Operation Masher was a combined U.S., Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN), and Republic of Korea Army (ROKA) operation that began on January 28, 1966. The name "Operation Masher" was changed to "Operation White Wing", because the name was deemed too crude for 'nation-building'. The mission was a search and destroy mission, and had little to do with nation-building. The operation was divided into four Phases.
Masher/White Wing lasted 42 days and ended on March 6. The U.S claimed 1,342 enemy soldiers had been killed by the 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) at the cost of 288 United States' troops killed and 990 wounded. The ARVN and ROKA forces killed an additional 808 enemy soldiers. 65 crew-served and 289 individual weapons were captured. The U.S claimed the 3rd NVA Division was destroyed; however, later it was back in action elsewhere on the battlefield.
The US Government summarized the amount of firepower deployed during Operation Masher/White wing. 1352 strikes coupled with 1126 fighter sorties dropped 1.5 million pounds of bombs. 292,000 pounds of napalm was also used. Operation Masher left over 1884 refugees.
By 1967, the number of Communists captured in Vietnam numbered 17,000 but there were over 1.2 million civilian refugees.
- Summers, Harry G. Historical Atlas of the Vietnam War. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company.
- The Ten Thousand Day War Imperial War Museum Dept of Printed Books
- The short film STAFF FILM REPORT 66-12A (1966) is available for free download at the Internet Archive [more]
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