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Subject: koreans and operation Van Buren
tettet    1/23/2004 3:13:00 PM
During "Operation Van Buren," a ROKMC platoon of about 13 people wiped out an elite North Vietnamese Army regiment. There were only 2 Koreans dead and more than 400 NVA soldiers dead. It was first a gun battle but it broke down into hand to hand combat. The ROKMC had an overall kill ratio of 25:1. source: Does anyone know more about this? I've read of it before but they don't get into details, I heard that they were the ones ambushed (they weren't the ambushers) so how can they get away with only two dead?
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HanKim    RE:koreans and operation Van Buren   1/25/2004 6:32:27 AM
The web page is probably talking about the battle at Tra Bihn Dong between the ROK Marines of 11th Company, 3rd Battalion, 2nd Brigade(aka Blue Dragons) and a regimental sized NVA force. I believe the web page is off by ONLY one order of magnitude. It was around 300 Korean marines defending a company OP rather than 13. There were around 15 KIA on the Korean side with many more wounded. The NVA suffered at least 240 confirmed KIA with possibly 60 more KIA, and 2 NVA were captured. The marines captured scores of enemy weoponry, including 3 czech-made flame throwers, several rpgs and machine guns and assorted small arms. The NVA goals were to overrun the company and with follow on forces attack the ROK artillery units and an American airbase at nearby Chu Lai. During the 4 hour night battle, the NVA penetrated the barb wire multiple times and had artillery support. NVA artillery hit the ammunition stores for the ROK's 4.2" mortars but the collapsing sandbags prevented secondary explosions which would have been devastating. The ROK marines disassembled their own heavy machine guns, mortars and recoiless rifle to prevent them from falling into enemy hands. Squads and fire teams moved behind the NVA that had penetrated the base along the trenches the NVA had previously overrun to counter attack. In these counter attacks, the ROK marines captured the flame throwers and machine guns the NVA had used to break through on the NVA. There were many instances of hand-to-hand combat with trenching tools. The presence of mind and combat skills displayed by the ROK marines that night is truly amazing. Han
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Final Historian    RE:koreans and operation Van Buren   1/25/2004 11:19:21 AM
That sounds a little more realistic Han... But still, not bad at all for the Koreans. Nice to know they are on our side...
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tettet    RE:koreans and operation Van Buren   1/26/2004 11:20:06 AM
Yeah, it is nice to know. That h2h combat part though short it sounded quite brutal.
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dba       4/7/2008 3:05:22 PM
Best acct of the battle here

http:// vietvet . co . kr/
Click on 'English'
Click on 'Violent Combats'
Click on ' Battle at Tra Binh Dong'
Your URL should be  http:// cafe3 . ktdom . com/vietvet/us/trabinh . htm

It's a bit difficult to read because the translation is not perfect but still gives you a good idea about what took place.
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