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  MACVSOG - Command History Annexes A,N & M (1964-1966):
First Secrets of the Vietnam War
by Charles F. Reske

    [Webmaster note: this web page includes four sections which are excerpts from the first book in a series of three.]

Sections from the first book:

  1. Appendix B
  2. Maritime Operations - Historical Summary
  3. Maritime Operations
  4. Appendix III

Fast Patrol Boat
by Charles F. Reske

While covert operations throughout Southeast Asia were nothing new, the personnel of the Maritime Studies Branch and Maritime Studies Group were clearly the stars of the show from 1964 through 1966. Though this star would be partially eclipsed by the activities of the Ground and Airborne Studies Groups, the majority of actions above the 17th parallel were conducted by the U.S. Navy and the Coastal Security Service.

After November of 1968 all U.S. forces, MACV- SOG included, were prohibited from operating in North Vietnam -- with the single exception of the Maritime Studies Group. SOG's private Navy continued to conduct kidnapping missions, propaganda operations, and the interdiction of NVN's fishing and shipping industries until the organization was disestablished in 1972.

Naval operations in Southeast Asia had been underway since the 1950's, with the U.S. Navy assisting in the mass exodus from North Vietnam at the time of partition. Clearly, the naval elements were the most experienced and successful American covert war assets in Vietnam.

The most potent of SOG's Maritime resources were the PTFs, the so called "Nasty" Class motor gunboats built by Batservice Verft A/S in Mandal, Norway. Designed by Norwegian Naval Architect Jan H. Linge, the first PTF's were completed in 1957, and subsequently entered service with the Royal Norwegian Navy, U.S. Navy, and West German Navy.

The PTF could be configured in one of two ways. The original configuration was that of a Motor Torpedo Boat, with easy conversion to a Motor Gun Boat or minelayer with the addition of mine rails.

Capable of doing 44 knots at 75 tons displacement (70 tons plus half fuel), the boat had a cruising range of approximately 450 miles at maximum cruising speed, 500 miles at 35 knots, and 600 miles at 20 knots. In a long range version of the PTF, the approximate cruising ranges expanded to 800 miles (38 knots), 900 miles (35 knots), and 1100 miles (20 knots) .

In all, Batservice Verft A/S built 16 PTF's for MACV-SOG. Unable to keep up with increased U.S. demands for more of the craft, the contract was let to Trumpy Boat Works in Annapolis, Maryland.  


  1. Operations Summary
  2. Crews for Maritime Craft
  3. PTF Delivery Schedule
  4. PTF Maintenance
  5. PTF Support
  6. -- Deleted -- Defense [Package Two. A plan to add four to six U.S. aircraft to afford cover and incorporate action against certain North Vietnamese coastal targets above the 19th Parallel.]
  7. PTF-1 and PTF-2 Disposition
  8. Swift Status
  9. PTF Lease

Maritime Operations
I. Operations Summary

    1. Maritime Operations Section of SOG, functioning as two staff components of USNAD -- Deleted -- [Da Nang] commenced formal operations in February 1964 with unsuccessful swimmer attacks against -- Deleted -- and -- Deleted -- at -- Deleted -- [a kidnap mission and demolition sortie in NVN] on 16 February 1964. They were followed by a similarly unsuccessful swimmer attack at -- Deleted -- and two aborted actions against -- Words Deleted -- A total of eight action personnel were lost on these operations.

    2. The first in a planned series of DRV fishing junk captures, named operation [Possibly: Lucky Dragon, Glynn Reef, Hai Gang Tudo-I] was successfully executed off (shore) on 27 May. -- Two Sentences Deleted -- Three successive team actions resulted in destruction of a storage facility at -- Deleted -- 12 June, demolishing a -- Deleted - bridge [Bridge Route One?] in the vicinity of -- Deleted -- on 26 June, and damage to the -- Deleted -- pump house on 30 June. On 26 June, defection offers to DRV -- Deleted -- [Junk or Swatow] captains were placed in lighted buoys off -- Deleted -- [Possibly: Phuoc Loi] naval bases in support of psychological operations concept "Operation Lure."

    3. -- Deleted -- were successful on 9 and 25 July respectively. A team action against the -- Deleted - security post on 15 July was aborted in the objective area, with loss of two team members. [Late in 1963 similar operations had been carried out with JCS approval of CINCPA C OPLAN 34-63, which called for MACV and CAS (the Saigon office of the Central Intelligence Agencyl, Saigon to pro- vide advice and assistance to the GVN in certain operations against North Vietnam. Phase I of the plan was to consist of Psychological Operations, Phase II of Hit and Run Attacks. The latter included amphibious raids using Vietnamese UDT/SEAL Team, Rangers, Airborne, and Marine units against selected targets south of the Tonkin Delta having little or no security. It almost goes without saying that U.S. advisors accompanied the Vietnamese on these missions.]

    4. At this stage of operations, with Navy adapted 81mm mortars installed on PTFs 7 and 8 (recently arrived at -- Deleted --) [USNAD Da Nang] it was decided to initiate the already programmed bombardment concept in support of OPLAN 34A, commencing with utilization of 57mm teams from the deck of PTFs and later expanding to the 81mm mortars. The first bombardments on 30 July, utilized PTFs 2 and 5 against -- Deleted -- Officer in Tactical Command (OTC)- Deleted --, and PTFs 3 and 6 against -- Deleted -- (OTC) -- Deleted - These missions were well executed and highly successful, with secondary explosions as -- Deleted - and enemy resistance encountered at -- Deleted -

    5. In July MACV set up July-August -- Deleted - [VNN/CSS] patrol coordination procedures, indicating -- Deleted -- [VNN/CSS] Maritime Operations compatibility, provided MACV always had accurate knowledge of -- Deleted -- [VNN/CSS] whereabouts. On 31 July a DeSoto -- Deleted - [Desoto: USN Destroyer intelligence gathering patrols off North Vietnam] entered the - Deleted   [Tonkin Gulf] which made it necessary to schedule maritime operations during this period no sooner than 36 hours after passage of the -- Deleted - [Destroyer] in any specific area. [Refers to OPLAN34A attacks against Non Gnu and Non Me islands.]

    6. Dates for proposed bombardments against -- Deleted -- [Possible targets included Vinh Son, Mui Dao, Yen Phu, or Sam Son radar installations in NVN] radar and -- Deleted -- security post were adjusted to conform and the actions were executed on 3 August. PTF-6 reported many fires upon departure from -- Deleted -- bombardment and as a result of the -- Deleted -- bombardment by PTFs 2 and 5, -- Deleted -- radar was off the air for an approximate period of at least five days. During this action, -- Deleted -- [DeSoto] patrol was in the northern reaches of the -- Deleted -- [Gulf] and to insure noninterference, was requested by COM- USMACV not to proceed below -- Deleted - [possibly 19th parallel] during the night of 3-4 August .

    7. The ensuing attack by DRV motor torpedo boats against -- Deleted -- [DeSoto] patrol ships on the night of 4 August precipitated a stand-down of maritime operations in the -- Deleted -- [Gulf] ordered by JCS, which was eventually to result in no boat activity in -- Deleted -- [North Vietnam] for a two month period. 

    [On 2 August 1964 the USS Maddox was attacked in the Tonkin Gulf by DR V motor torpedo boats while on a DeSoto patrol off the DR V coast. Several patrol boats were sunk. On 4 August 1964 the USS Maddox and C. Turner Joy were attacked in a repetition of the 2 August incident. After efforts to confirm the attack, President Johnson authorized reprisal air strikes against the North. Many historians have long suspected that MACSOG 34A PTF operations in the Tonkin Gulf led to the DRV attack on the Maddox. They also suspect that the subsequent attack on the Maddox and C. Turner Joy on 4 August 1964 never actually took place. On 7 August 1964 President Johnson briefed leaders of Congress, and had a resolution of support for U.S. policy introduced. It was passed with near-unanimity by both Houses. The Tonkin Gulf Resolution, while not a formal declaration of war, effectively put America squarely on the path that would lead to 58, 000 American deaths in Southeast Asia. By 1973, when the last U.S. troops were pulled out of Vietnam, more than 2.5 million Americans had been in- country.]  

    To preclude loss of craft from possible reprisal effort by DRV -- Deleted -- [Coastal], Air, and/or Naval elements immediately following the 4 August -- Deleted -- [Gulf] incident, the eight PTFs deployed to -- Deleted -- [USNAD, Da Nang] on 5 August with combined US/VNN crews on board (VNN, OTC -- Name Deleted -- and Senior US Advisor Lt(jg)- Name Deleted -- Overall staff coordination for the deployment was supervised by the Chief, Maritime Operations Section of SOG (Cdr -- Name Deleted --) and on-scene liaison was effected by Lcdr -- Name Deleted -- and Lt(jg) -- Name Deleted -- All craft returned to -- Deleted -- [USNAD] by 10 August.

    8. In August JCS requested testing of a 106mm RR on board a PTF for possible use as a standoff weapon with sufficient range to reach some inland targets not attainable with the 81mm mortar. The ordnance was obtained from -- Deleted -- along with suitable supervisory personnel and complete tests were conducted over a period of several weeks. Resulting shock damage to PTF components, indicated unsatisfactory capability of employment of the 106mm RR in this manner and this was reported to JCS. 

    [In 1971 SOG mounted Communist-made 122mm rockets and launchers aboard their PTFs. This allowed the boats to fire two salves of four rockets in a 15 minute period at a standoff range of 11,000 meters.]

    9. On 12 August CINCPACFLT requested COMSEVENTHFLT plan for aircraft cover of maritime operations probe into the -- Deleted -- [DRV] utilizing Seventh Fleet EC-121 following -- Words Deleted -- Plans were developed by COMSEVENTHFLT and MACSOG for two such coordinated missions scheduled for 28 and 31 August. At this time, it was felt appropriate that a set of communication and recognition signals be developed for use in case of emergency procedures between units of the Seventh Fleet and SOG craft. The first set of signals was to be promulgated on 23 August by MACSOG and incorporated the already existing two letter recognition signals, developed in July for use between Coastal Security Service (CSS)/VNN craft in I Corps coastal waters by the Naval Advisory Group. The proposed missions were eventually passed over by events and did not materialize. However, the significance of the two emergency procedures developed at this time was to be confirmed by examples of their future usefulness.

    10. Higher authority decided upon VNAF vice U.S. air cover for maritime operations -- Deleted -- [in South Vietnam] only. Accordingly, NAD installed an/ARC-27 in PTFs for A1H compatibility and conducted training with VNAF A1H controlled by SOG C-123 aircraft. 

    11. During late August, an accidental rocket launcher explosion resulting in injury of a SEAL team member at -- Deleted -- prompted CINCPACFLT to initiate action to assist in testing/development and procurement of all operational ordnance items.

    12. JCS authorized resumption of maritime operations and requested schedule submission by 12 September. A five day -- Deleted -- was scheduled for commencement 17 September. MACSOG submitted eight proposed operations to run over a 13 day period commencing 23 hours after the -- Deleted -- [DeSoto] patrol cleared the -- Deleted -- [Gulf] (22 September). 

    [Very little was accomplished during September of 1964.]

    13. -- Deleted -- [OPLAN 34A] Maritime Operations delayed due to weather and on 21 September all PTFs deployed to -- Deleted -- to evade Typhoon Tilda, returning 23 September. -- Deleted -- [OPLAN 34A] was deferred indefinitely. Maritime operations L-day probe off -- Deleted -- [Vinh Sor] further delayed by Typhoon Anita and residual was finally conducted 3 October.

    [October Schedule]

    Recon L-Day (Oct. 4) Probe to 12 miles of Vinh Sor.
    Recon L-Day + 2 (Oct. 10) Probe to 3 miles of Vinh Sor.
    Loki IV L + 5 -- Junk capture failed.
    32 & 45 E L + 8 (Oct.28/29) Bombard Vinh Son radar and Mui Dao observation post.

    November Schedule

    34B L + 12 (Nov. 4, on) Bombardment of barracks on Hon Matt and Tiger Island.
    L + 13 Capture of prisoner by team from PTF.
    L + 15 Junk Capture.
    L + 19 Bombard Cap Mui Ron and Tiger Island.
    L + 25 Bombard Yen Phu and Sam Son radar.
    L + 28 Blow up Bridge Route 1 and bombard Cap Mui Dao.
    L + 30 Return any captives from L + 15.
    L + 31 Bombard Hon Ne and Hon Me.
    L + 36 Blow up pier at Phuc Loi and bombard Hon Ngu.
    L + 38 Cut Hanoi-Vinh rail line.
    L + 41 Bombard Dong Hoi and Tiger Island.
    L + 24 Bombard Nightingale Island.

    14. At CINCPAC suggestion, DD/PTF training plan was formulated and firmed during OTG 70.8 representatives Cdr -- Name Deleted -- visit to USNAD, with USNAD providing PTFs for one-time identity training exercise, which eventually expanded into formal continuing training. CSS emergency communication and recognition procedures were promulgated in final format on 4 October.

    15. Maritime operations missions for approximately one and one-half month period were forwarded per JCS request on a time schedule format. All missions were to be launched only upon JCS case by case evaluation of previous mission and JCS authorization.

    16. OTG 70.8 usurpation of maritime operations PTF services resulted in MACSOG deferment of services until schedule was submitted via MACV and cleared. MACSOG proposal for orderly scheduling was concurred in and reiterated by COMSEVENTHFLT, and PTF services resumed.

    17. After several aborted -- Words Obscured - was conducted 10 October, and -- Word Obscured -- was conducted 15 October capture. [10 October: Probe to within 3 miles of Vinh Sor. 15 October: Failed Junk capture.] -- Words Deleted -- bombardment was delayed due to erroneous photo interpretation readout indicating motor torpedo boats plus weather. It was successfully conducted 28 October. [Bombard Vinh Son radar and Mui Dao observation post.]

    18. In order to take advantage of a few days of periodic good weather during the northeast monsoon, maritime operations commenced submission of several final OPLANS for successive conduct. Operations were restricted -- Words Deleted -- by message through special communication channels due to higher authority concern over DRV reaction capability.

    19. In view expanding interest in maritime operations, MACSOG requested CINCPAC distribute emergency procedures to additional addressees including PACAF [Pacific Command Air Force].

    20. MACSOG conducted a six boat naval bombardment of -- Deleted -- on 26 November, and 27 December and -- Deleted -- radar on 8 December. [See: October/November Schedule.]

    21. The Quang Khe naval bombardment was aborted in the target area due to DRV naval order of battle on 1 and 22 December and aborted because of weather. December operations were dominated by unfavorable (conditions) and typhoon weather.

    22. MACSOG requested the presence of U.S. Naval vessels (specially) modified in anti-DRV measures in the -- Word Obscured -- for psychological operations (when weather conditions preclude maritime operations).

    23. Approval for -- Deleted and Illegible -- as corollary junk capture are granted for conduct. [Possibly refers to a series of MAROPS designated LOKI IV.] Request for case-by-case windfall VNN attack against anchored/disabled DRV craft and vulnerable windfall beach targets was approved.

    24. JCS proposed two package mission concepts with package one to run from approximately 15 December through 15 January and package two thereafter, with provision for US air cover in package two.

    MACV proposed use of existing CSS emergency procedures; COMSEVENTHFLT suggested evaluation of procedures, and CINCPAC/CINCPACAF requested that MACV/COMSEVENTHFLT test. MACV, meanwhile, laid down provisions for conduct of training due to intensive use of PTFs in favorable periods of monsoon weather.

    [Package One was programmed for 30 days' duration. Basically, they were shallow penetration raids on all types of targets which would provide the greatest psychological benefits. The destructive results and military utility were to be strictly secondary considerations. In other words, convincing the DRV of U.S. and SVN resolve, and the ability to strike anywhere with impunity, was more important than the actual destruction of the targets.

    Package Two added 4 to 6 U.S. aircraft to afford protective cover and incorporate action against certain North Vietnamese coastal targets above the 19th parallel. This package was intended to begin approximately 30 days after initiation of the first, although the instructions cautioned that the plans should be prepared to provide for an indefinite period of operations under Package One.]

    25. JCS informed of intent to launch concepts valid each day if weather favorable until continuous good weather prevails.

    26. MACSOG granted authority to COMSEVENTHFLT to downgrade emergency procedure extracts to Secret for training. OTG 70.8 proposal DD/PTF training air/surface tactics on continuing basis. MACSOG approved the DD/PTF aircraft tactics training plus emergency procedures against returning PTFs for missions above 17th parallel.

II. Crews For Maritime Craft

    1. On 18 January 1964 General -- Name Deleted - dispatched letter (MACSOG 0061-64) to Major General -- Name Deleted -- RVN, concurring in his proposal to raise the manning in the VNN from 45 to 145 men during 1964 to support the boat requirements.

    2. On 27 January 1964, General -- Name Deleted -- dispatched another letter to General -- Name Deleted -- (MACSOG 0062-64) informing him that there would be a total of eight boats and listed personnel requirements for the six additional boats. Dates for crew availability were listed as follows:

      a. Crew requirements: 1 March: 30
      b. Crew requirements: 15 April: 30
      c. Crew requirements: 15 May: 30
      d. Supervisory personnel as soon as possible: Seven officers.

    3. On 12 February 1964, General -- Name Deleted -- dispatched letter (MACSOG ~059-64) to General -- Name Deleted -- outlining the same requirements to those forwarded to General -- Name Deleted -- with the additional requirement for 40 station team personnel.

    4. The following personnel reported for duty with Mobile Support Team (MST) as boat training teams for PTFs 3 and 4: -- Names of Assigned Personnel Deleted -

    5. On 21 April 1964 the following personnel reported to MST-1-64 for duty with boat training teams 5 and 6: -- Names Deleted -

    6. On 2 May PTFs 5 and 6 arrived and the crews (spares from PTFs 3 and 4) commenced training. PTF-5 was operational ready 7 June and PTF-6 was operational ready 24 June.

    7. On 19 June 1964, Chief, SOG forwarded a letter to COMUSMACV requesting two complete crews for PTFs 7 and 8. The letter was prepared for forwarding official requests to General -- Name Deleted --, although -- Illegible -- agreed to provide such crews. Colonel -- Name Deleted -- coordination was obtained on the letter. On 22 June, General -- Name Deleted -- replied that he had discussed the requirement with General -- Name Deleted - that the latter had approved our request.

    8. On 27 April the following personnel reported to MST-1-64 for duty with boat training teams 7 and 8: -- Names Deleted -

    9. PTFs 7 and 8 with VNN crews arrived and commenced training 7 July. Both crews were operational ready by mid-August.

    10. On 28 August, General -- Name Deleted - dispatched a letter to -- Illegible -- [possibly SES (Special Exploitation Service)] Subj: Personnel. Among other requests, this letter requested that VNN provide PTF crew 9 as a spare crew. 

III. PTF Delivery Schedule 

    1. -- Deleted -- stated that PTF-3 was delivered - DTG Illegible -- MACSOG attempted to confirm delivery of PTF's 5 and 6 on or about 14 May with COMNAVBASE SUBIC. 

    [Subic Naval Base in the Philippines. Many of SOG's Maritime assets plied back and forth between Subic and Da Nang for refitting and repair. Eventually MA CSOG would contract with ECC to provide on site repair and service technicians for the VNN.]

    2. CINCPACFLT stated PTFs 1 and 2 plus pontoon dock, crane barge, and tender being readied at -- Deleted -- for delivery to -- Deleted -- The anticipated delivery of the PTFs was 22-24 April.

    [PTFs, also called Nasty Boots, were built by Boatservice Ltd. A/S of Mandal, Norway. The hulls consisted of two layers of mahogany that sandwiched a layer of fiberglass. Equipped with British engines (Napier-Deltic diesels), they had a range of 450 miles at 41 knots, or 600 miles at 25 knots. Those extended cruising ranges made them ideal for long range covert missions above the 17th parallel. With a crew of3 officers and 16 enlisted, they and their American-built successors served throughout the war. PTF-I and PTF-2 were later sunk as targets. PTFs 4, 8, 9, 14, 15, and 16 were sunk in action between 1964 and 1966. Jane's Fighting Ships, 1974-75]

    3. In answer to a query by COMNAVFOR, Seventh Fleet, COMNAVBASE SUBIC informed as to the following proposed PTF shipping dates:

      a. 13 April: Pontoon drydock, crane, and tender barge.
      b. 20 April: PTFs 1 and 2.
      c. 1 May: PTFs 5 and 6; return PTFs 3 and 4 to Subic for fuel tank improvement.
      d. 20 May: Return PTFs 3 and 4 to Da Nang.
      e. 20 June: PTFs 7 and 8.

    4. On 20 April CTF 76 [Commander, Task Force 76] informed MACSOG and others of following revised PTF delivery schedule via -- Deleted -

      a. 26 April: PTFs 1 and 2 to -- Deleted -
      b. 14 May: PTFs 5 and 6 to -- Deleted -
      c. 15 May: PTFs 3 and 4 for Subic; return -- Deleted -
      d. 23 June: PTFs 7 and 8 to -- Deleted -

    5. CINCPACFLT requested evaluation of PTFs 1 and 2 due to greatly different characteristics and recommendation as to whether these craft should be removed from Vietnam.

    6. MACSOG requested CINCPACFLT to delay delivery of PTFs 7 and 8 until on or about 15 July due to slippage in docking facilities and fuel farm system. This would also permit noise level tests on these boats and input of VNN crews which are scheduled arrive -- Deleted -- July. COMSEVENTHFLT agreed to the above request and stated that -- Deleted -- [Boatservice A/S Ltd.] could make delivery about 15 August. In reply, MACSOG stated delivery on 7 July was desired. Accordingly, CINCPACFLT established 7 July as delivery date.

    7. In response to JCS query, COMUSMACV stated five additional PTFs were needed; two to replace PTFs 1 and 2 with these additional PTF back-up in Subic.

    8. CINCPACFLT stated four new PTFs were due -- Deleted -- January-March 1965. 

IV. PTF Maintenance 

    1. In March 1964 MACSOG advised -- Deleted - [Batservice Verft A/S (Boatservice A/S Ltd.)] that fuel cell tank #9 ruptured along a weld on its out- board side. Also, Tanks #8 and #9 shifted fore and aft due to loose strapping. Further, new tanks #2 and #3, and #9 vertically buckled on the inboard side above the horizontal weld. MACSOG evaluation was that new tanks with square edges do not provide sufficient strength for securing without modification. It was recommended that a representative -- Deleted -- [Boatservice A/S] visit and investigate the problems.

    2. According to the above request, a -- Deleted - [Boatservice A/S] representative visited -- Deleted - and reported findings recommending installation of new style tank manufactured in Subic on PTFs 3 through 8.

    3. CINCPAC passed fuel tank problems to CINCPAC and BUSHIPS and informed all that the installation recommendation in paragraph 2 above was underway.

    4. NAVSHIPREPFAC [Naval Ship Repair Facility] -- Deleted -- notified BUSHIPS [Bureau of Ships] that the -- Words Illegible -- on PTF 2 tumbles during high accelerations or heavy pounding. Similar problems encountered in PTF 1 were solved by a change to -- Words Illegible -- Early resolution of problem was requested.

    5. MACSOG informed -- Deleted -- [Boatservice A/S Ltd.] that the quill saline shaft sheared on #1 engine on PTF 1 and #4 engine on PTF 2. Spare parts from PTF 2 were cannibalized to make PTF 1 operational.

    6. MACSOG requested that enlarged heat exchangers be installed at -- Deleted -- [Boatservice A/S Ltd.] for PTFs 3 and 4. Another query was dispatched to -- Deleted -- [Boatservice A/S] requesting plans for installing heat exchangers on PTFs 3 and 4 as well as PTFs 5 and 6, which had arrived without exchangers.

    7. MACSOG advised -- Deleted -- [Napier-Deltic, a British engine manufacturer] that the starboard engine on PTF 3 failed to turnover and that coolant water was found in engine block. Repairs were beyond capacity of MST and the engine would be returned to -- Deleted -- [Napier-Deltic]. Engine had 200 hours time, serial #523, installed in -- Deleted -- [Napier-Deltic] with one year guarantee or 750 running hours. Further, message requested status of spare Deltic engines at Subic.

    8. MACSOG expressed concern to -- Deleted - [Napier] with high noise level of the PTFs. In reply -- Deleted -- [Napier] stated that the turbo- supercharger is the major source of boat noise, exhaust noise being reduced to minimum by exhaust through an eight inch pipe. Further isolation of super-charger noise was not considered practical by manufacturer's representative.

    9. On 21 May, MACSOG advised CINCPACFLT that PTF engine noise was excessive and requested authority to conduct initial investigation on PTFs 7 and 8 to determine feasibility of an economical lightweight installation designed to reduce engine noise level.

    10. CINCPACFLT passed MACSOG's desires to BUSHIPS requesting comments and recommendations. Accordingly, BUSHIPS advised it and no -- Word Illegible -- to -- Deleted -- conducting tests provided -- Deleted -- [Napier] representative concurred that any solution considered would not adversely affect engine performance.

    11. MACSOG advised -- Deleted -- on 9 June that it appeared that above tests would be drawn out and that delay of delivery of PTFs was not acceptable.

    12. MACSOG proposed to commence overhaul of PTFs by starting with PTF 3, sea lifting it from -- Deleted -- approximately 1 December 1964 to -- Deleted -- MACSOG further stated overhaul schedule of first four PTFs should be based on overhaul experience for PTF 3. Overhaul was estimated to be 30 days. 

V. PTF Support
    1. COMNAVPHIL [Commander, U.S. Navy, Philippines] passed the following arrangements for support of the PTFs in WESTPAC [Western Pacific].  
      a. PTF administrative/logistical support and repair/maintenance function for PTFs in -- Deleted - were delegated to -- Deleted -- in accordance with CINCPACFLT. 

      [Possibly refers to Maritime Studies Branch, MACSOG-31/Maritime Studies Group, MACSOG-37. SOG's repair facilities in Da Nang were located at Lower Base, which was approximately 3 miles NW of Camp Fay. NAD Mobile Support Teams and Mobile Training Teams provided logistics support for the boats through liaison with the Navy Special Programs Office at Ship Repair Facility, Naval Supply Depot, Subic Bay.]

      b. PTF administrative/logistical function for PTFs in RVN were delegated to -- Deleted -- in accordance with CINCPACFLT.

      c. Assignments of governing procedures and responsibilities for PTF support were established by CINCPACFLT.

    2. In order to clarify responsibilities CINCPACFLT informed COMNAVPHIL and COMSEVENTHFLT that the responsibility for assembly of drydock package, supervising instruction of personnel, evaluation of number of propulsion units required for crane barge, preparation for movement to and mooring at, final site and administrative/ logistical functions for pontoon package in RVN was assigned to COMNAVPHIL vice COMSEVENTHFLT. COMSEVENTHFLT would continue provide assembly personnel and drydock transportation to mooring site.

    3. MACSOG as to arrangements for refueling PTFs 1 and 2 with AVGAS.

    4. MACSOG advised CINCPACFLT that an interim measure for refueling PTFs 1 and 2 would be by AVGAS truck on the beach as a base, with craft moored 100 yards offshore. Also, MACSOG stated that fuel farm completion might be delayed if resolution of finding problem by higher authority not forthcoming soon. A contract with low bidder was also completed but not signed. ESSO required a contract and estimated six weeks for completion after receipt of a contract. 

    [Chieu-ESSO maintained a large fuel storage facility north and across the bay from Da Nang.]

    5. CINCPACFLT indicated readiness to assist in test, development, and procurement of special PTF ordnance support materials if requirements were made known. These requirements were provided by the following Top Secret messages:
    Message  Requirement 
    MACSOG 2711102 Aug64 PTF armament 
    MACSOG 2811512 Aug64 Underwater mission material
    MACSOG 0107432 Sep64 Over the beach material 
    [Refers to UDT/SEAL team operations.]

    6. MACSOG confirmed to CINCPAC a requirement for a T-14 swimmer propulsion unit.

    7. MACSOG reviewed and restated prior voluminous message traffic on PTF ordnance support requirements.

    8. CINCPACFLT scheduled a Navy-wide maritime operations conference at -- Deleted - [either Hawaii or Subic] for 12-13 October which was attended by MACV (Director) of Operations, Maritime Operations, and -- Words Illegible - conference, general maritime operations support problems -- Words Illegible -- as a result, NAD weekly summaries of significant unfilled requisitions related to not only maritime operations ordnance equipment but also to general support material and PTF (MST) support material.

    9. MACSOG requested CJNCPAC/CINCPACFLT assistance in:

      a. Providing PTF radar/gyro parts.
      b. Providing D... [?] radar cosal and cosal stacks.
      c. Shortening lead times in responding to PTF radar/gyro repair and repair part needs.
      d. Expediting procurement and -- Deleted - delivery of PTF repair parts let by -- Deleted -

    MACSOG requested an enlisted electronics technician at -- Deleted -- assist in overcoming electronic problems. One was subsequently provided.

    10. CINCPACFLT questioned whether significant PTF support degradation had occurred. MACSOG replied that degradation had not occurred but that some repair parts problems existed which could be subject of SOG representatives visit to -- Deleted - on 6 November 1964.

    1l. CINCPACFLT recommended establishment of a PTF casualty reporting system to improve support. MACSOG concurred and system placed in effect.

    12. MACSOG proposed reliefs for key maritime operations officer personnel at -- Deleted -- to fulfill prescribed language, security, preparatory briefing, and instruction requirements.

    13. MACSOG requested CINCPAC initiate Navy action to terminate security breach of unclassified message references to U.S. PTFs. CINCPAC (complied) and implemented.

    14. MACSOG representatives -- Deleted -- and team -- Words Illegible -- in solving radar and gyro problems. On 24 November installation of De(ros) 202 radar was completed in Swifts plus PTFs 5-8 and additional gyro material ordered from Subic.

    15. A favorable comparison was achieved between recently obtained T-14 SPU [Swimmer Propulsion Unit] characteristics with previously stated MACSOG required characteristics. A message stated special SPU maintenance personnel could return to CONUS and NAD personnel would maintain SPUs cannibalizing two SPUs to keep the other four operational.

    16. MACSOG received -- Deleted -- and - Deleted -- letters which contained debriefs of SHF electrical, mechanical, and electronic inspections on PTF. These letters requested authority to debrief MACSOG personnel in connection with PTF material support, MACSOG considered such authority already provided and requested that forth- coming -- Deleted -- improvement recommendations to MACSOG on: 

      a. Preventative maintenance.
      b. Engineering operating.
      c. Casualty control.
      d. -- Deleted -- PTF logistical support.

VI. -- Deleted -- [Naval Advisory Detachment] Harbor Defense

    1. In addition to ground security augmentation, MACSOG requested special support from CNO to improve -- Deleted -- [Naval Advisory Detachment] defense. Equipment arrived -- Deleted -- [NAD] in October 1964 and was unsatisfactory.

    [The U.S. Naval Advisory Detachment controlled five camps and two beaches on a rocky peninsula Southeast of the city of Da Nang. Camp Fay was the principal berthing area for all personnel assigned to NAD and Monkey Mountain Forward Operating Base (MMFOB). Lower Base, approximately 3 miles NW from Camp Fay, was the operational base of NAD and the Coastal Security Service. In-country craft were docked at three pontoon piers.

    Upper Base, located across the road from Lower Base, contained facilities for the CSS. Camp Black Rock, located 1 mile east from Camp Fay, housed the U.S. Navy SEALs. Nung Camp was located adjacent to Upper Base, and contained additional CSS and CIDG facilities. Coral Beach, near Camp Black Rock, contained a pistol and rifle range, grenade/mortar area, and infiltration training area. Spanish Beach, near Nung Camp, contained three magazines for ammunition and demolitions storage. MACSOG, with considerable assets hugging the coastline of Da Nang, was correct to worry about defenses.]

    2. MACSOG requested CINCPACFLT representative, knowledgeable in harbor defenses, to survey - Deleted -- [NAD] defense needs and assist in arriving at an in-country resolution.

    3. CINCPAC requested concept (in event surface craft attack -- Deleted --) [NAD] for PTF role in passive protection or active defense. MACSOG submitted the following concept: 

      a. Active:
        (1) Attack and deflect DRV craft wherever encountered.
        (2) Operate in assigned sections to avoid mistaken identity. [To avoid the possibility of the South Vietnamese VNN/CSS panicking and opening fire on SOG craft.]
        (3) U.S. OTC on PTFs involved in operations -- Deleted -- [Above the 17th parallel. No CSS craft left port without Americans aboard to keep an eye on the Vietnamese and, more importantly, keep them pointed in the right direction.]
        (4) If provided, use US/VN naval and air support with appropriate communications and coordination.
      b. Passive:
        (1) Readiness of PTFs to increase alert or 1 sortie. 
        (2) Surveillance by PTF/Swift craft and base personnel to repel attack from land and sea.

    4. MACSOG reported to CINCPAC that the CINCPACFLT survey was completed on 16 December with its report to be hand-carried to CINCPACFLT. MACSOG also stated that some aspects of the survey were being implemented and that assistance would be requested from CINCPAC at a later date. 

    [If the report was hand-carried it was probably classified Top Secret. Top Secret documents can only be transmitted by:

      a. Direct personal contact.
        (1) Military personnel (E-7 and above). 
        (2) Civilian personnel (GS-7 and above).
      b. Armed Forces Courier Service (for MACSOG the Safe Hands Courier Service). 
      c. Electric means, in encrypted form.]

    5. -- Deleted -- [Naval Advisory Detachment] requested firm decision on disposition of PTF 1 and PTF 2 in view of extreme difficulty -- Deleted - [CSS] in providing supply and maintenance support. Officer in charge previously recommended PTFs and 2 be used in -- Deleted -- [Harbor] security patrol, limited to operations/training missions in which MACSOG concurred, and that this status continue until the crews of PTFs 1 and 2 transferred to new PTFs at -- Deleted -- [NAD]. 

    [PTFs 1 and 2 were later sunk as targets.]

IX. PTF Lease

    1. In October 1964, MACSOG stated that the time was not ripe to lease PTFs to the Government of Vietnam; although CNO indicated prior to 34A operations, PTFs should be leased.

    2. CINCPAC emphasized the need for MACSOG to complete the PTF leases.

    3. COMUSMACV indicated lease discussions had progressed to point where CINCPAC legal assistance was required.


[The most productive branches on the Studies and Observations Group tree were the Maritime Operations Sections and Maritime Operations Group, later designated Maritime Studies Branch (MA CSOG-3I~ and Maritime Studies Group (MA CSOG-31). From 1964 through 1965 Maritime operations were the unchallenged stars of the show, with the Air Force bombing programs in Laos (Barrel Roll) and attacks on North Vietnam (Rolling Thunder) running a close second. Later assessments of the bombing missions would conclude that they did little to deter the North Vietnamese war-making potential, but like the naval operations, at least it looked as if we were doing something significant.

The Maritime star would soon be eclipsed by SOG's ground operations in Laos, Cambodia, the DMZ, North Vietnam, and South Vietnam. But in 1964-6~ the Maritime Operations Section was riding high.  

Much of the success of the Maritime program was due to the fact that U.S. naval forces had been operating in Vietnamese waters since the mid-fifties, and had, by that time, determined what would work and what wouldn't.  

One of the early, little known naval operations conducted was named Operation: Exodus, in which Dr. Tom Dooley was to win fame. Exodus involved sea lifting refugees fleeing south after the signing of the Accords that divided Vietnam at the 17th parallel. The Navy lifted over 300,000 persons to safety. In all, 900,000 refugees fled from North to South, and 100,000from South to North.  

OPLAN 34A maritime operations had been presaged by DeSoto intelligence-gathering patrols conducted in international waters above the 17th parallel, and many historians believe the Tonkin Gulf incident, in which the USS Maddox and Turner Joy were attacked by NVN gunboats, was triggered by an earlier 34A raid. The attack on the Turner Joy may never have taken place, but the attack on the Maddox provided all the justification the President need to push through the Tonkin Gulf Resolution. By the time the war ended, more than 2.5 million Americans had moved through South Vietnam, thanks, in part, to MACV-SOG and the actions of a few PTFs operating above the 17th parallel in 1964. 

Maritime operations under OPLAN 34A, however, represented nothing significantly new. These had been underway since October 4, 1964. Assignments for the Maritime Operations Group included 15 missions involving shore bombardments, a junk capture, a kidnap mission, and a demolition sortie against a coastal highway bridge.  

Soon after the decision had been made to commit U.S. assets to the 34A program, the Joint Chiefs of Staff tasked COMUSMACV with developing a revised December 1964 34A operations schedule to better reflect the newly adopted concept of applying ever increasing pressure on North Vietnam. CINCPAC was requested to submit revised 34A plans not later than 8 December.  

The instructions specified that these plans were to include a proposed sequence and timing for increased frequency of maritime operations in two packages.  

The first was to begin on December 15, extend over a period of 30 days, and provide for shallow penetration raids by UDT/SEAL personnel on ad types of targets which would provide the greatest psychological benefits. Package Two added 4 to 6 U.S aircraft to the program to afford protective cover and incorporate action against certain North Vietnamese coastal targets above the 19th parallel.  

MACV's new proposal for maritime operations was submitted on 5 December, with proposals for psychological operations and aerial resupply/reinforce missions following close behind. On the 10th, approval for the latter two was communicated back to the field. At the time, MAROPS proposals were still under consideration within the JCS.  

On the 12th, the JCS submitted their two-package proposal. Included in their first 30-day package were coastal bombardment of radar sites, barracks, and PT boat bases plus a maritime equivalent of aerial armed reconnaissance. Patrol boats would make fire sweeps along the coast against targets of opportunity. In addition, upon their return from bombardment missions, it was proposed that the GVN PT boats attempt the capture of NVN junks and   

With the single exception of the coastal fire sweeps, all of these initial package operations were approved by the OSD (Office of the Secretary of Defense), and instructions were issued to implement the initial increment of such operations on or about IS December. 

The Joint Chiefs of Staff pointed out that without the fire sweeps, there would be no additional pressure on North Vietnam. Plans were overtaken by nature. Heavy seas throughout the month of December 1964 and January 1965 had effectively cancelled all MAROPS. By February of 1965 they were still on hold.]

1. Summary of Operations 

    The currently used code names for the various types of MAROPS mission conducted during CY 1965 will be used in this summary to facilitate brevity. These code names are defined as follows: 
      a. Separately scheduled Nasty Class PTF -- Word Deleted -- Swift mission wherein NVN junks are -- Sentence Deleted -- Junks are either destroyed or captured as tactical situation dictates. 

      b. Separately scheduled Nasty Class PTF and/or Swift mission interdiction mission wherein NVN vessels in patrol area are stopped and searched. -- Remainder Deleted - 

    [The deleted section probably deals with operation Sea Dragon, also known as Traffic Cop. This was a program of interdiction of North Vietnamese coastal shipping 17:OO N to 18: OO N. The Traffic Cop phase consisted of Destroyer operations against coastal shipping of NVN 17:OO N to 18:OO N. Other missions utilized the PTFs to intercept and destroy infiltration trawlers that had been designated a threat by CINCPAC, conduct bombardment of designated transshipment points and storage areas along the coast of North Vietnam, and the destruction of the North Vietnamese fishing industry along the coast of North Vietnam. 

    SOG also conducted in-country cross-beach operations, called Dewey Rifle (or Dodge Mark), Insistence operations, which were conducted in coordination with Market Time (NAVFORV) to prevent infiltration by sea into South Vietnam, and Footboy (formerly Plowman), which dealt with the infiltration and support of agents in North Vietnam.] 

    f. General
    (1) The continually increasing readiness posture of North Vietnamese coastal defense forces made maritime operations either ashore or in close proximity to shore increasingly difficult during the year. Timely intelligence, careful briefing of operational personnel and thorough planning alleviated this problem to some extent. Unacceptably high sea states resulting from unfavorable weather and limited boat availability due to maintenance requirements also hindered operations. Nevertheless, operations were vastly increased in tempo and scope. -- Paragraph Deleted - 

    [The North Vietnamese coastal defense forces SOG mentions were equipped with Soviet and Red Chinese radar, missiles and artillery.] 

    On 12 August 1965 -- Name Deleted -- was assigned to duty as the Targeting Officer for MAROPS. His assignment expedited procurement of adequate intelligence for planning MAROPS missions and provided expert photo interpretation services on a prompt and continuing basis.

    -- Sections 2 through 6 Deleted - 

    (7) The floating drydock at USNAD, in spite all possible preventative maintenance, deteriorated to the extent that it was necessary to send it to the Ship Repair Facility, Japan, on 25 August. It was overhauled and returned to USNAD on 27 October.

    [According to Jane's Fighting Ships, 1974-75, the USNAD drydock was designated AFDL-23. Built in 1944, it weighed 1,900 tons and was constructed of steel. Some drydocks in the AFDL series had concrete hulls. All AFDLs were constructed between 1943 and 1944. AFDL-22 was loaned to South Vietnam.]

    (8) Planning/coordination/liaison conferences and visits between MAROPS and USNAD personnel occurred frequently throughout the year with a resultant increase in proficiency, unity of purpose and effort. -- Paragraph Deleted - 

    (9) Unsatisfactory characteristics of various items of boat -- Words Deleted -- imposed operational limitations. Corrective action was initiated and close supervision maintained. A conference was held CINCPAC HQ during December which was concerned with this problem area. The Chief, Operations, and Chief, MAROPS from SOG, and the Assistant Training Officer, USNAD attended this conference which dealt with the following: 

      (a) Funding
      (b) Need for specific details regarding equipment characteristics or purpose, to aid R & D of certain items  
      (c) Determination of on-shelf procurement vice R & D.
      (d) Priority based on operational need. 
      [The PTFs were undergoing almost constant modification during 1964-65. Added to SOGs Iist of concerns was the inability of South Vietnamese repair personnel to properly maintain the boats.]

    (10) Provision of adequate logistical support of USNAD continued to be a problem; supply sources, transportation, long distances and items peculiar to MAROPS all being contributory factors. SOG Logistics was cognizant of, and continually devoted its best efforts to solving these problems. -- Section Illegible - 

    (12) Close coordination was continually effected with 7th Air Force and Naval Advisory Group regarding matters pertaining to OPLAN 34A, Market Time, and Fleet operations. Close liaison was maintained with Vietnamese counterpart personnel with adjacent and support augmentation units. 

    (13) A civic action program initiated to aid destitute Vietnamese nationals in close proximity to USNAD facilities was gratefully received. The success of this program was such that it was placed on a continuing basis. 

    [SOG was not being generous or considerate of the plight of the locals. The civic action program was designed to keep the people happy and, hopefully, out of the grasp of the Viet Cong. Up until the end of the war, SOG never realized that the Marble Mountain area of Da Nang had been heavily infiltrated by Viet Cong.] 

    (14) The massive -- Words Deleted - 
    [SOG is complaining about infiltration of  VC and the attendant security problems experienced by USNAD.]

    (15)-- Words Deleted -- awarded the following citation army degree, to the Vietnamese personnel of the Coastal Security Service (CSS) at USNAD effective 24 September 1965: 

    "Since its formation on April first 1964, the Coastal Security Service has performed an efficient job and achieved -- Words Deleted -- missions behind enemy lines, inflicting heavy casualties: 
    -- Destroying 51 military installations. 
    -- Sinking two boats, 20 armed junks. 
    -- Killing the -- Number Illegible -- the most, capturing 75 NVN officers and wounding a number of them. 
    -- Capturing a big haul of weapons, military equipment, and ammunition. 
    -- Displaying a commendable fighting spirit and strong sense of duty, the Coastal Security Service has greatly contributed to checking the expansion of communist sea infiltration accompanied by a gallantry -- Words Illegible --" 

    [Compare SOGs glowing words about the CSS with (a) below. Perhaps this schizophrenic section has something to do with the fact that the CSS was organized on April Fool's Day.]

2. Training Activities

    (a) The standards of aggressiveness, professionalism, competency, initiative and judgment which U.S. Armed Forces personnel are accustomed to accepting as a matter of course were not always as apparent in our Vietnamese counterparts or operational units. Constant efforts were made to address problems of this nature by example, appropriate advisory action, and consistent training. 

    (1) Boat Crew Training. Refresher training was accomplished whenever operational requirements and boat availability permitted. Particular emphasis was placed on Vietnamese crew boat maintenance and underway repairs. Individual and multiple boat tactics and gunnery were also stressed. 

    (2)- Deleted -

3. Facility Improvement

    a. Officer and enlisted quarters and messing facilities were constructed at Camp Fay, and all hands moved from their quarters in Da Nang to their new housing. This move, which was completed on 24 August was highly desirable from both security and operational readiness viewpoints, since it removed sensitive USNAD personnel from the immediate proximity of Vietnamese civilians and the numerous uncleared American forces personnel, and also put them in housing only a few minutes ride from their duty stations. Formerly, a lengthy trip across a bridge and along poorly maintained roads had to be made to get from quarters to duty station. 

    b. Other new and isolated individual training camps were built along China Beach including the facility constructed at Camp Black Rock Bay. This base was highly desirable due to the buildup of American forces in the area, as well as affording an opportunity for close supervision of Landing Teams. Quarters were completed with the exception of installation of messing and sanitary facilities, so the consolidation had to be delayed until this was ac- sometime during early 1966. 

    c. Continual efforts were made to improve the security and comfort of existing facilities. Windows in the Command Post were closed with concrete blocks, better fencing was installed, trenches and weapons emplacements were dug in all required areas, and numerous other projects were completed. 

    [Many of the existing facilities SOG renovated had been inherited from the French.]


(TSLD) Appendix III contains the historical summaries of the operational aspects of OPLAN 34A. 

Section 1 -- Maritime Operations

1. (TS) Summary of Operations. The current means of identifying types of MAROPS missions is by number, -- Material Deleted -- The current mission designation method was adopted midway through CY-66. However, the code names are used throughout this report to simplify identification. These code names are defined as follows: 

    a. -- Word Deleted -- Separately scheduled Nasty Class PTF -- Section Deleted -- Junks are either destroyed or captured as tactical mission dictates. 

    b. -- Word Deleted -- Separately scheduled Nasty Class PTF -- Words Deleted -- interdiction mission wherein NVN vessels encountered in the patrol area are stopped, bearded, and searched. -- WORDS Deleted -- If cargo of a military nature is found, vessel is destroyed. 

    c. -- All of C is Deleted - 
    [The deleted sections refer to the practice of MAROPS 34A craft operating above the 17th parallel. SOG personnel captured NVN fishing and/or cargo junks and took appropriate measures. In some instances, fishermen were kidnapped and sent to an island off the coast of Da Nang for a program of political re-education. 34A maritime operations above the 17th parallel -- which continued long after the U.S. prohibition against actions in NVN in November, 1968 -- were always sensitive.]

      (1) (C) The Nasty class PTF is an 80-foot, 80-ton diesel powered -- Words Deleted -- hull boat capable of speeds up to 40 knots. Normal armament consists of one 40-mm gun, two 20-mm guns, one .50 cal MG and 81 mm mortar. Radar and communications equipment are provided. 
      [The deletion refers to the fact that the hull is composed of a layer of fiberglass sandwiched between sheets of mahogany. The boats were initially built in Norway, and MACSOG 's reason for classifying the hull composition remains an unsolved mystery./

      Date: CY 1966 
      Operation: 126 Primary missions; 56 Secondary missions.
      Results (totals):

      • 353 prisoners captured.
      • 352 prisoners returned
      • 86 enemy craft destroyed.
      • 16 enemy craft damaged.
      • 2,000,000 PSYWAR leaflets distributed by 81mm mortar .
      • 60,000 PSYWAR gift kits delivered.
      • 2,600 PSYWAR radios delivered. 

      -- Section Deleted - 
      f. General: 

      (1) No MAROPS were conducted in 1966 until 17 February, at which time a 55-day JCS-ordered stand down was terminated. -- Sentences Deleted -

      (2) Coastal guns engaged MAROPS craft frequently and as PTF assets decreased through operational attrition, missions were scheduled with a definite view toward conserving PTF assets on hand. Nevertheless, missions were executed along the entire NVN coast and over one-half of the total MAROPS missions conducted in 1966 were executed north of 19:00 N.

      (3)- Name Deleted -- relieved -- Name Deleted -- as the Chief, MAROPS on 24 April. - Name Deleted -- relieved -- Name Deleted as Operations Officer, MAROPS on 6 June. Lieutenant Colonel Butler relieved -- Name Deleted - as Plans Officer, MAROPS on 6 July. -- Name Deleted -- relieved -- Name Deleted -- as Assistant Operations Officer, MAROPS on 4 August. -- Name Deleted -- relieved Lieutenant Commander -- Name Deleted -- as Operations Officer, MAROPS on 20 November.

      (4) Commander -- Name Deleted -- relieved -- Name Deleted -- as Officer in Charge, USNAD on 1 May.

      (5) On 31 July the Chief, Naval Advisory Group, Military Assistance Command, Vietnam, approved the TO&E for the naval element of the Coastal Security Service. Approved strength was set at 362 Vietnamese Naval personnel. An average of 11 PTF crews composed of Vietnamese Naval personnel were operationally ready throughout the year. -- Material Deleted -

      (6)- Deleted -

      (7) PTF operational status varied due to material casualties and operational losses. Three new Nasty Class PTFs were acquired in 1966. All three of these boats were subsequently lost during the year. The inventory at the beginning of the year consisted of nine Nasty Class PTFs. At the end of 1966 seven Nasty Class PTFs were in the SOG inventory.

      An average of seven Nasty Class PTFs were operationally ready throughout the year. At the end of 1966 the status of replacement PTFs was reflected in a JCS message which stated that the Trumpy Boat Yard, Annapolis, Maryland, had been awarded a contract to build six Nasty Class PTFs with first delivery in 18 months.

2. (TS) Operations:

    a. The most effective operations conducted by MAROPS in pursuance of OPLAN 34A were PTF maritime interdiction missions. -- Several Sentences Deleted -- Maritime action team missions during the year did not succeed in attaining the degree of success anticipated. Several factors contributed to the relatively poor results achieved in action team missions. Adverse weather caused cancellation of missions which could not be rescheduled until the suitable moon phase in the following month; instances of mutual interference were experienced; -- Words Deleted --; primarily pre-strike photography, necessitated several action team cancellations; and, finally, an -- Words Deleted - coupled with -- Words Deleted -- resulted in other missions being aborted. 

    [The deleted sections probably refer to VNN interference and the lack of coordination between SOG and non-SOG U.S. maritime support assets. SOG's problems with both the VNN and non-SOG support assets would continue throughout its lifetime.]

    b. The operational areas available to the MAROPS craft became increasingly -- Sentence Deleted -- a USN NGF/interdiction operation employing USN destroyers to engage military cargo vessels and active military coastal installations. By the end of 1966 Sea Dragon had extended north to 18:00 N. Additionally -- Words Deleted -- restricting MAROPS craft to areas south of l9.30N so as not to expose PTFs to known operating areas of NVN air. PTFs had been attacked in northern waters by enemy air in 1966 without possessing adequate air defense weapons. -- Sentences Deleted -

    [Sea Dragon operations were permitted between the 17th and 20th parallels (NVN). Sea Dragon consisted of naval surface operations against NVN military/logistic watercraft and against suitable targets in NVN ashore north of 20 degrees N latitude to the redefined buffer zone (DMZ). 'Suitable targets' included coastal radar and missile sites. 

    The advantages foreseen by an expansion of Sea Dragon operations were apparent. Simply stated, MACSOG/34A forces would be able to interdict coastal water traffic and reduce the use of land LOCs by harassing gunfire. The risks, however, were formidable. 

    It was considered entirely possible that, if Sea Dragon expanded radically, U.S. 34A forces would face possible naval and air reactions by NVN in northern waters, together with the ever increasing likelihood that Red Chinese and Soviet patrol craft (and PRC/Soviet crews) might be drawn into the conflict.

    Nonetheless, plans were drawn to expand the Sea Dragon concept to include valid military targets ashore south of 19 degrees N Forces engaged in Sea Dragon up to this point in the war required extensive authorization for offensive action against shore targets.

    The most ambitious and far-ranging plans included provisions for action by MAROPS craft above the 20th parallel. Coastal targets between the 17th and 22nd parallels were:

      a. Hon Gio
      b. Don Hio
      c. Ha Tinh
      d. Vinh 
      e. Thanh Hoa 
      f. Ninh Binh 
      g. Nam Dinh 
      h. Thai Binh 
      i. Hainan Island 
      j. Haiphong 
      k. Hon Gai
      and everything in between. 

    The advantages of such actions were interdiction of coastal water traffic and the reduction of land LOCs. 

    The physical risks assessed for all of these actions were considered only minimal beyond normal combat. The political risks vacillated between low - since US ships were already firing against shore targets in self-defense and against waterborne logistic craft beached and in rivers -- and high, with Soviet and CHICOM direct action anticipated. Clearly, MACSOG 34A Maritime operations were the star of the show from 1964 through 1967.]

3. (TS) Training: 

    a. Action Team Training. The major training advancement implemented in 1966 was the -- Words Deleted -- These operations began in September and introduced across-the-beach missions similar in all respects to action team missions in NVN with certain exceptions. SOTROPS were conducted in SVN against known VC-occupied areas. The action teams were accompanied by US advisors who observed the conduct of the teams throughout the mission. Each SOTROPS was scheduled and executed as a final rehearsal for a future mission in NVN and as nearly as possible involved elements and techniques which the teams would experience in operations in NVN. In addition to the value of SOTROPS in regard to action team training, intelligence information of value to the III MAF in the I Corps was furnished to G-2, III MAF. 

    b. Boat Crew Training. Cyclic and refresher training continued whenever boat availability and operational requirements permitted. Individual and multiple boat tactics as well as gunnery and fire discipline were stressed. Proper communication procedures were emphasized constantly as was the proper use of recognition procedures. The Mobile Support Team began a program of training all Vietnamese engineering ratings in maintenance and repair of the Napier-Deltic engines, the propulsion system of the Nasty PTF.

4. (TS) Equipment -- Deleted -

5. (TS) Facilities:

    a. The operational base for MAROPS cr USNAD Da Nang became -- Words Deleted because of the increased waterborne traffic attendant personnel in the immediate area. 

    b. In the summer of 1966 the action team base camp construction at Black Rock was completed. Action Teams were relocated at this camp from their individual camps in the vicinity of My Khe. These camps were turned over to the Da Nang Real Estate Directorate for other than SOG use. U.S. SEAL advisors continued to be based at My Khe with their move to Black Rock scheduled in CY-67. In the fall of 1966 an explosion of unknown origin extensively damaged the My Khe camp. Repairs were effected; however, no rebuilding of facilities was undertaken since all activities will be transferred to Black Rock during first of CY-67.