Operation Wheeler/Wallowa was a U.S. offensive operation during the Vietnam War, launched on 11 September 1967 and concluding in February 1968. Tiger Force reportedly also killed hundreds of unarmed civilians during the operation who were reported as enemy combatants.
Operation Wheeler/Wallowa was launched as part of the operations conducted by Task Force Oregon, a multi-brigade force of the U.S. Army, made up of the 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne Division; and the 3rd Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, with its headquarters at Chu Lai Base Area. Its objective was to "blunt" the offensive by the People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN) 2nd Division, and allow units of the 1st Marine Division to relocate to Da Nang. Shortly after the Task Force became operational, Brigadier General Samuel W. Koster took command. Three days later, the Task Force was reconstituted as the 23rd Infantry (Americal) Division. Wheeler/Wallowa actually started as two separate operations, which were merged in November 1967.
Operation Wheeler was launched on 11 September 1967, under the control of the 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne Division. It was launched against the PAVN 2nd Division to the northwest of Chu Lai. The operation was essentially a series of assaults and search-and-destroy missions against the 2nd Division. The operation was coordinated with the U.S. Marine Corps/Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) Operation Swift/Lien Ket 116 in the Quế Sơn Valley.:119
Operation Wallowa was launched on 4 October 1967 under the control of the 3rd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, when it replaced the 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne Division and two battalions of the 3rd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division. The operation involved intensive surveillance of the Hiệp Đức District-Quế Sơn Valley. Small units were combat assaulted into the area to find the PAVN prior to the insertion of ready reaction forces.
On 11 November 1967 both Operations Wheeler and Wallowa were merged to facilitate coordination and control, under the authority of Koster, who was now a Major General. Wheeler/Wallowa became a codename for a series of operations throughout Quảng Nam and Quảng Tín Provinces. Seven U.S. Army infantry battalions were participating in the action.
On 12 February 1968, after participating in Task Force Miracle (the defense of Da Nang during the Tet Offensive), the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment returned south and conducted combat operations under the control of the 3rd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division. On 27 February 1968, the 3rd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division tactical area of operations passed to the 196th Infantry Brigade and the 1/6th Infantry came under their operational control. The 3rd Brigade, 4th Infantry Division moved out of the Americal Division area and deployed in the II Corps further to the south.
The operation ended on 28 February 1968. Following the disclosure of the My Lai massacre, the Peers Commission, which was charged with investigating the events that occurred at My Lai, found that several similar events had occurred in many villages in the Wheeler/Wallowa operational area.
The 6th Infantry Regiment ("Regulars") was formed 11 January 1812. Zachary Taylor, later the twelfth President of the United States, was a commander of the unit. The motto, "Regulars, By God!" derives from the Battle of Chippawa, in which British Major General Phineas Riall noticed that the approaching regiment had on the uniforms of militia, which the British had defeated at Queenston Heights. Instead, the Americans pressed the attack. Riall is assumed to have said, "Those are Regulars, By God!" (though the only source of this was opposing U.S. general Winfield Scott).List of allied military operations of the Vietnam War (1967)
This article is a list of known military operations of the Vietnam War in 1967, conducted by the armed forces of the Republic of Vietnam, the United States and their allies.List of allied military operations of the Vietnam War (T–Z and others)
This article is a list of known military operations of the Vietnam War, a war fought by America to try to stop communism in Southeast Asia, conducted by the armed forces of the Republic of Vietnam, the United States and their assorted allies. This is not a complete list.My Lai Massacre
The Mỹ Lai Massacre (; Vietnamese: Thảm sát Mỹ Lai [tʰâːm ʂǎːt mǐˀ lāːj] (listen)) was the Vietnam War mass murder of unarmed South Vietnamese civilians by U.S. troops in Sơn Tịnh District, South Vietnam, on 16 March 1968. Between 347 and 504 unarmed people were killed by the U.S. Army soldiers from Company C, 1st Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 11th Brigade, 23rd (Americal) Infantry Division. Victims included men, women, children, and infants. Some of the women were gang-raped and their bodies mutilated as were children as young as 12. Twenty-six soldiers were charged with criminal offenses, but only Lieutenant William Calley Jr., a platoon leader in C Company, was convicted. Found guilty of killing 22 villagers, he was originally given a life sentence, but served only three and a half years under house arrest.
The massacre, which was later called "the most shocking episode of the Vietnam War", took place in two hamlets of Sơn Mỹ village in Quảng Ngãi Province. These hamlets were marked on the U.S. Army topographic maps as Mỹ Lai and Mỹ Khê.The U.S. Army slang name for the hamlets and sub-hamlets in that area was Pinkville, and the carnage was initially referred to as the Pinkville Massacre. Later, when the U.S. Army started its investigation, the media changed it to the Massacre at Songmy. Currently, the event is referred to as the My Lai Massacre in the United States and called the Sơn Mỹ Massacre in Vietnam.The incident prompted global outrage when it became public knowledge in November 1969. The incident increased to some extent domestic opposition to the U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War when the scope of killing and cover-up attempts were exposed. Initially, three U.S. servicemen who had tried to halt the massacre and rescue the hiding civilians were shunned, and even denounced as traitors by several U.S. Congressmen, including Mendel Rivers, Chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. Only after 30 years were they recognized and decorated, one posthumously, by the U.S. Army for shielding non-combatants from harm in a war zone. Along with the No Gun Ri massacre in South Korea 18 years earlier, Mỹ Lai was one of the largest publicized massacres of civilians by U.S. forces in the 20th century.Nick Turse
Nick Turse (born 1975) is an American investigative journalist, historian, and author. He is the associate editor and research director of the blog TomDispatch and a fellow at The Nation Institute.Operation Auburn
Operation Auburn was a US Marine Corps operation that took place south of Danang, lasting from 28 December 1967 to 3 January 1968.Operation Essex
Operation Essex was an operation by the 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines in "Antenna Valley", Hiệp Đức District south of An Hoa Combat Base from 6 to 17 November 1967.Quảng Nam Province
Quảng Nam (listen) is a province in the Central region of Vietnam. It is bordered by Thừa Thiên–Huế Province to the north, the nation of Laos to the west, Kon Tum Province to the southwest, Quảng Ngãi Province to the southeast, the South China Sea to the east, and the city of Da Nang to the northeast. It is extremely famous for Quang noodles, Hoi An ancient town and My Son holy land.United States war crimes
United States war crimes are the violations of the laws and customs of war of which the United States Armed Forces are accused of committing since the signing of the Hague Conventions of 1899 and 1907. These have included the summary execution of captured enemy combatants, the mistreatment of prisoners during interrogation (torture), and the use of violence against civilian non-combatants.
War crimes can be prosecuted in the United States through the War Crimes Act of 1996. However, the U.S. Government, which strongly opposes the International Criminal Court (ICC) treaty, arguing that the Court lacks checks and balances, and thus does not accept ICC jurisdiction over its nationals.Vietnam War Crimes Working Group
The Vietnam War Crimes Working Group (VWCWG) was a Pentagon task force set up in the wake of the My Lai Massacre and its media disclosure, to attempt to ascertain the veracity of emerging claims of war crimes by U.S. armed forces in Vietnam, during the Vietnam War period.
The investigation compiled over 9,000 pages of investigative files, sworn statements by witnesses and status reports for top military officers, indicating that 320 alleged incidents had factual basis.Vietnam War body count controversy
The Vietnam War body count controversy centers on the counting of enemy dead by the US forces during the Vietnam War with issues around killing and counting unarmed civilians as enemy combatants as well as inflating the number of actual enemy KIA. For search and destroy operations, as the objective was not to hold territory or secure populations, victory was assessed by having a higher enemy body count.
Easter Offensive (1972)
Post-Paris Peace Accords (1973–1974)