Tunnel Rats

November 1, 1955: War breaks out in Vietnam. Now, before I continue with this we need some back story.

During the late 1940s, communist forces began digging tunnels under South Vietnam. The Cu Chi tunnels were dug by hand and stretched more than 120 miles. However, 20 years after the tunnels were first created, they would be utilized once more. During the Vietnam War, these tunnels were used for many different purposes: cover from aerial attacks, housing troops, mount surprise attacks and the transportation of supplies and communication. After an attack the North Vietnamese soldiers would disappear underground to escape capture.In order to navigate these tunnels.

The Cu Chi tunnels played a key role in combat during the Vietnam War. VC soldiers would lay trip wires that would either set off a grenade or overturn boxes of scorpions or poisonous snakes.In order to combat this, the United States military trained “tunnel rats” to go, armed with only a pistol and a flashlight, and scout out enemy soldiers and detect booby traps. Many different large scale attacks, like that on January 1966, were conducted to try and sweep the Cu Chi district but were unsuccessful. However, after the sweeps the North Vietnamese and VC troops would just slip back into the area using the tunnels. Two years later the tunnels would serve as the North Vietnamese stronghold in their attack against Saigon, during the Vietnamese New Year (Tet), in what would be known as the Tet Offensive.

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3 thoughts on “Tunnel Rats

  1. I thought this was a really cool topic to read about. I liked how you gave the history of the tunnels, it helped me understand the rest of the article. I’m just wondering what became of those tunnels after the war up to the present day.

    Like

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