The Mekong Delta known as the Western Region or the South-western region is the region in southwestern Vietnam where the Mekong River approaches and empties into the sea through a network of distributaries. The Mekong delta region encompasses a large portion of southwestern Vietnam of over 40,500 square kilometres; the size of the area covered by water depends on the season. The region comprises 12 provinces: Long An, Đồng Tháp, Tiền Giang, An Giang, Bến Tre, Vĩnh Long, Trà Vinh, Hậu Giang, Kiên Giang, Sóc Trăng, Bạc Liêu, Cà Mau, along with the province-level municipality of Cần Thơ; the Mekong Delta has been dubbed as a "biological treasure trove". Over 1,000 animal species were recorded between 1997 and 2007 and new species of plants, fish and mammals have been discovered in unexplored areas, including the Laotian rock rat, thought to be extinct; the Mekong Delta was inhabited long since prehistory. Archaeological discoveries at Óc Eo and other Funanese sites show that the area was an important part of the Funan kingdom, bustling with trading ports and canals as early as in the first century AD and extensive human settlement in the region may have gone back as far as the 4th century BC.
Angkor Borei is a site in the Mekong Delta that existed between 400 BC-500 AD. This site had extensive maritime trade networks throughout Southeast Asia and with India, is believed to have been the ancient capital to the Kingdom of Funan; the region was known as Khmer Krom to the Khmer Empire, which maintained settlements there centuries before its rise in the 11th and 12th centuries. The kingdom of Champa, though based along the coast of modern Central Vietnam, is known to have expanded west into the Mekong Delta, seizing control of Prey Nokor by the end of the 13th century. Author Nghia M. Vo suggests that a Cham presence may indeed have existed in the area prior to Khmer occupation. Beginning in the 1620s, Cambodian king Chey Chettha II allowed the Vietnamese to settle in the area, to set up a custom house at Prey Nokor, which they colloquially referred to as Sài Gòn; the increasing waves of Vietnamese settlers which followed overwhelmed the kingdom—weakened as it was due to war with Thailand—and Vietnamized the area.
During the late 17th century, Mạc Cửu, a Chinese anti-Qing general, began to expand Vietnamese and Chinese settlements deeper into Cambodian lands, in 1691, Prey Nokor was occupied by the Vietnamese. In 1698, the Nguyễn lords of Huế sent Nguyễn Hữu Cảnh, a Vietnamese noble, to the area to establish Vietnamese administrative structures in the area; this act formally detached the Mekong Delta from Cambodia, placing the region under Vietnamese administrative control. The Khmers were cut off from access to the South China Sea, trade through the area was possible only with Vietnamese permission. During the Tây Sơn wars and the subsequent Nguyễn Dynasty, Vietnam's boundaries were pushed as far as the Cape Cà Mau. In 1802 Nguyễn Ánh crowned himself emperor Gia Long and unified all the territories comprising modern Vietnam, including the Mekong Delta. Upon the conclusion of the Cochinchina Campaign in the 1860s, the area became part of Cochinchina, France's first colony in Vietnam, part of French Indochina.
Beginning during the French colonial period, the French patrolled and fought on the waterways of the Mekong Delta region with their Divisions navales d'assaut, a tactic which lasted throughout the First Indochina War, was employed by the US Navy Mobile Riverine Force. During the Vietnam War—also referred to as the Second Indochina War—the Delta region saw savage fighting between Viet Cong guerrillas and the US 9th Infantry Division and units of the United States Navy's swift boats and hovercrafts plus the Army of the Republic of Vietnam 7th, 9th, 21st Infantry Divisions; as a military region the Mekong Delta was encompassed by the IV Corps Tactical Zone. In 1975, North Vietnamese soldiers and Viet Cong soldiers launched a massive invasion in many parts of South Vietnam. While I, II, III Corps collapsed IV Corps was still intact due to under Major General Nguyen Khoa Nam overseeing strong military operations to prevent VC taking over any important regional districts; when the South Vietnamese President Duong Van Minh ordered a surrender, both ARVN generals in Can Tho, General Le Van Hung and Nguyen Khoa Nam, committed suicide after deciding not to continue battle against the VC soldiers.
Following independence from France, the Mekong Delta was part of the Republic of Vietnam and the country of Vietnam. In the 1970s, the Khmer Rouge regime attacked Vietnam in an attempt to reconquer the Delta region; this campaign precipitated the Vietnamese invasion of Cambodia and subsequent downfall of the Khmer Rouge. The Mekong Delta, as a region, lies to the west of Ho Chi Minh City forming a triangle stretching from Mỹ Tho in the east to Châu Đốc and Hà Tiên in the northwest, down to Cà Mau at the southernmost tip of Vietnam, including the island of Phú Quốc; the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam displays a variety of physical landscapes, but is dominated by flat flood plains in the south, with a few hills in the north and west. This diversity of terrain was the product of tectonic uplift and folding brought about by the collision of the Indian and Eurasian tectonic plates about 50 million
Taoyuan International Airport
Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport is an international airport serving Taipei and northern Taiwan. Located about 40 km west of Taipei in Dayuan District, the airport is Taiwan's largest and busiest airport, it is one of five Taiwanese airports with regular international flights, is operated by the Taoyuan International Airport Corporation. In 2016, it was ranked the best airport for its size in the Asia-Pacific region by Airports Council International; the airport opened for commercial operations in 1979 and is an important regional trans-shipment center, passenger hub, gateway for destinations in Asia. Known as Chiang Kai-shek International Airport, it was renamed on 6 September 2006 to its current name, it is one of two. Songshan now serves chartered flights, intra-island flights, limited international flights. In 2016, Taiwan Taoyuan handled a record 42.3 million passengers and 2.1 billion kg of freight, making it the 10th busiest airport worldwide by international passenger traffic, 6th busiest in terms of international freight traffic in 2015.
It is the main international hub for EVA Air. It is a hub of Uni Air and the LCC Tigerair Taiwan; the airport planned as Taoyuan International Airport, bore the name of late President Chiang Kai-shek until 2006. In Chinese, its former name was "Chung-Cheng International Airport", where Chung-Cheng is the legal given name that Chiang Kai-shek had used since the 1910s. In Taiwan, Chiang Kai-shek is associated with the Chinese Nationalist Party or Kuomintang and its many years of one-party authoritarian rule. Local officials in Taoyuan City and members of the Pan-Green Coalition referred to the hub by the name associated with it: "Taoyuan International Airport". News organizations and local residents sometimes combined the two used names as "Taoyuan Chung-Cheng Airport."The Executive Yuan of then-President Chen Shui-bian's administration approved the name Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport for the hub on 6 September 2006. The opposition Kuomintang, which together with its political allies held a one-vote majority in the Legislative Yuan, decried the change and proposed "Taiwan Taoyuan Chiang Kai-shek International Airport" instead.
The disagreement, like those affecting the names of the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall and other landmarks in Taiwan, stands as another manifestation of the trend known as Taiwan localization among pan-Green officials and desinicization by Pan-Blue Coalition. The media in mainland China has always referred to the airport as "Taoyuan International Airport" so as to avoid mentioning Chiang Kai-shek. In the 1970s, the original airport in Taipei City — Taipei Songshan Airport — had become overcrowded and could not be expanded due to space limitations. Thus, a new airport was planned to alleviate congestion; the new airport opened on 26 February 1979, as part of the Ten Major Construction Projects pursued by the government in the 1970s. The airport was planned under the name Taoyuan International Airport but was changed to Chiang Kai-shek International Airport in memory of former President Chiang Kai-shek; the airport is the main hub of China Airlines, the Republic of China's flag carrier, as well as EVA Air, a private airline established in 1989.
Overcrowding of the airport in recent years prompted the construction of Terminal 2, opened on 29 July 2000, with half of its gates operational. The remaining gates opened on 21 January 2005 for China Airlines, making China Airlines the only airline to operate from both terminals; the airport has announced construction plans for a third terminal. In October 2015, the design of British firm Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, founded by Pritzker Architecture Prize-laureate Richard Rogers, was chosen for the 640,000 square meter Terminal 3. Over US$2.3 billion will be poured into the project, among the most costly constructions in modern Taiwanese history. The terminal is expected to be opened in 2020 and accommodate 45 million passengers per year, boosting the yearly capacity of the airport to 86 million passengers. Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport has two terminals, which are connected by two, short people movers; the third and fourth terminals are planned, the Taoyuan Airport MRT links the terminals together underground, provides transportation to Taipei City.
Terminal 1 is the original passenger terminal of the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. The building was designed by Chinese-born, Taiwanese-American structural engineer Tung-Yen Lin and is based on the main terminal of Washington Dulles International Airport; the five-storey, 169,500 m2 terminal, along with the airport, opened in 1979 to relieve the overcrowded Taipei Songshan Airport. All international flights were moved to the airport following the completion of this terminal. Terminal 1 featured 22 gates. A row of 11 gates are located on the north end of the airfield facing the north runway and another row of 11 gates are located on the south end airfield facing the south runway; the two concourses that contained the airplane gates are linked together by a main building that contained the check-in areas, baggage claim, passport immigration areas, security checkpoint areas. Together they form a giant "H". All gates are equipped with jetways. Gates located at the end of the concourses have one jetway and reducing people and gates not located at the end of the concourses have two jetways.
The terminal used to be white in color when it first opened. As the years
Tan Son Nhut Air Base
Tan Son Nhut Air Base was a Republic of Vietnam Air Force facility. It was located near the city of Saigon in southern Vietnam; the United States used it as a major base during the Vietnam War, stationing Army, Air Force and Marine units there. Following the Fall of Saigon, it was taken over as a Vietnam People's Air Force facility and remains in use today. Tan Son Nhat International Airport, has been a major Vietnamese civil airport since the 1920s. Tan Son Nhat Airport was built by the French in the 1920s when the French Colonial government of Indochina constructed a small unpaved airport, known as Tan Son Nhat Airfield, in the village of Tan Son Nhat to serve as Saigon's commercial airport. Flights to and from France, as well as within Southeast Asia were available prior to World War II. During World War II, the Imperial Japanese Army used Tan Son Nhat as a transport base; when Japan surrendered in August 1945, the French Air Force flew a contingent of 150 troops into Tan Son Nhat. After World War II, Tân Sơn Nhất served domestic as well as international flights from Saigon.
In mid-1956 construction of a 7,200-foot runway was completed and the International Cooperation Administration soon started work on a 10,000-foot concrete runway. The airfield was run by the South Vietnamese Department of Civil Aviation with the RVNAF as a tenant located on the southwest of the airfield. In 1961, the government of the Republic of Vietnam requested the U. S. Military Assistance Advisory Group to plan for expansion of the Tan Son Nhut airport. A taxiway parallel to the original runway had just been completed by the E. V. Lane company for the U. S. Operations Mission, but parking aprons and connections to the taxiways were required. Under the direction of the U. S. Navy Officer in Charge of Construction RVN, these items were constructed by the American construction company RMK-BRJ in 1962. RMK-BRJ constructed an air-control radar station in 1962, the passenger and freight terminals in 1963. In 1967, RMK-BRJ constructed the second 10,000-foot concrete runway. In late 1951, the French Air Force established the RVNAF 312th Special Mission Squadron at Tan Son Nhat Airfield equipped with Morane 500 Criquet liaison aircraft.
In 1952 a heliport was constructed at the base for use by French Air Force medical evacuation helicopters. In 1953, Tan Son Nhut started being used as a military air base for the fledgling RVNAF, in 1956 the headquarters were moved from the center of Saigon to Tan Son Nhut, but before that time and Vietnamese military aircraft were in evidence at Tan Son Nhut. On 1 July 1955, the RVNAF 1st Transport Squadron equipped with C-47 Skytrains was established at the base; the RVNAF had a special missions squadron at the base equipped with 3 C-47s, 3 C-45s and 1 L-26. The 1st Transport Squadron would be renamed the 413rd Air Transport Squadron in January 1963. In June 1956 the 2nd Transport Squadron equipped with C-47s was established at the base and the RVNAF established its headquarters there, it would be renamed the 415th Air Transport Squadron in January 1963. In November 1956, by agreement with the South Vietnamese government, the USAF assumed some training and administrative roles of the RVNAF. A full handover of training responsibility took place on 1 June 1957 when the French training contracts expired.
On 1 June 1957 the RVNAF 1st Helicopter Squadron was established at the base without equipment. It operated with the French Air Force unit serving the International Control Commission and in April 1958 with the departure of the French it inherited its 10 H-19 helicopters. In October 1959 the 2nd Liaison Squadron equipped with L-19 Bird Dogs moved to the base from Nha Trang. In mid-December 1961 the USAF began delivery of 30 T-28 Trojans to the RVNAF at Tan Son Nhut. In December 1962 the 293rd Helicopter Squadron was activated at the base, it was inactivated in August 1964. In late 1962 the RVNAF formed the 716th Composite Reconnaissance Squadron equipped with 2 C-45 photo-reconnaissance aircraft. In January 1963 the USAF opened an H-19 pilot training facility at the base and by June the first RVNAF helicopter pilots had graduated. In January 1963 the 211th Helicopter Squadron equipped with UH-34s replaced the 1st Helicopter Squadron. In December 1963 the 716th Composite Reconnaissance Squadron was activated at the base, equipped with C-47s and T-28s.
The squadron would be inactivated in June 1964 and its mission assumed by the 2nd Air Division, while its pilots formed the 520th Fighter Squadron at Bien Hoa Air Base. In January 1964 all RVNAF units at the base came under the control of the newly established 33rd Tactical Wing. By midyear, the RVNAF had grown to thirteen squadrons; the RVNAF followed the practice of the U. S. Air Force, organizing the squadrons into wings, with one wing located in each of the four corps tactical zones at Cần Thơ Air Base, Tan Son Nhut AB, Pleiku Air Base and Da Nang Air Base. In May 1965 the Douglas A-1 Skyraider equipped; as the headquarters for the RVNAF, Tan Son Nhut was a command base, with most operational units using nearby Biên Hòa Air Base. At Tan Son Nhut, the RVNAF's system of command and control was developed over the years with assistance from the USAF; the system handled the flow of aircraft from take-off to target area, return to the base it was launched from. This was known as the Tactical Air Control System, it assured positive control of all areas where significant combat operations were performed.
Without this system, it would not have been possible for the RVNAF to deploy its forces where needed. The TACS was in close p
Phu Quoc International Airport
Phu Quoc International Airport is an international airport, completed in 2012 on Phú Quốc Island, in southern Vietnam. The airport covers nearly 900ha in Duong To village, Phú Quốc island-district, Kiên Giang Province having been built at a cost of around VND 16.2 trillion and is planned to be built in phases. The airport is 10 km from the previous Phu Quoc Airport; the airport was able to handle about 2.5 million passengers per annum, the maximum capacity will be 7 million passengers per annum, with international destinations expected to include Singapore and Sihanoukville International Airport. The airport has a single 3000m runway, capable of handling aircraft like the Airbus A350 and Boeing 747; the construction was completed in November 2012 and was put into operation on 2 December 2012. The Vietnamese government expects the airport to facilitate the arrival of international tourists who are attracted to the island's beaches. Airports Corporation of Vietnam began construction of the airport on 23 November 2008 with an investment of VND 3,000 billion.
It was designed by Singaporean-US design consulting firm CPG-PAE. After four years work the airport operated its inaugural flight on 15 December 2012. Duong Dong Airport Phu Quoc International Airport Guide Official website of Airports Corporation of Vietnam
Taichung International Airport
Taichung International Airport known as Ching Chuan Kang Airport or Qingquangang Airport, is an international airport located in Taichung, Taiwan, used for both commercial and military purposes. It is the third international airport in Taiwan, with scheduled services to China, South Korea and Vietnam. Taichung International Airport was constructed during the era of Japanese rule and was named Kōkan Airport; the United States Air Force had been garrisoning the base with two fighter squadrons until the Sino-American Mutual Defense Treaty came into force on March 3, 1955. The airport expanded in 1954 according to the Sino-American Mutual Defense Treaty, renamed Ching Chuan Kang Air Base in memory of General Ching Chuan Kang. In 1966 the American Air Force established a joint forces air-base at CCK, it was the largest air force base in the Far East at the time, allowing Boeing B-52 Stratofortress bombers to land. During the Vietnam War, CCK became a depot for the USAF; the US Military used CCK and Shuinan Airport to run many of its long-distance Vietnam and Laotian bombing and cargo transport runs during the Vietnam War era.
This base was shut down and most American facilities were removed after U. S. established diplomatic relations with the China in 1979. Construction of passenger facilities was completed in September 2003 and civilian services began on March 5, 2004, replacing the old Shuinan Airport located in downtown Taichung. Ching Chuan Kang Airport has since become the only airport serving Taichung; the airport has been promoted to an international airport on Jan 03, 2017 and named as Taichung International Airport. In 2003, with the demand to develop cross-strait and other international air routes from Taichung City, Taiwanese officials made the decision to transfer airports from Shuinan Airport to RMQ; the first terminal was completed in 2004, all flights moved from TXG to RMQ soon afterwards. In 2008, officials decided to build another terminal. Terminal 2 now handles all international/cross-strait flights, while the older Terminal 1 serves domestic flights. Civil Aeronautics Administration Transportation in Taiwan List of airports in Taiwan Taichung International Airport Official Website Airport information for RCMQ at World Aero Data.
Data current as of October 2006
United States Air Force
The United States Air Force is the aerial and space warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces. It is one of the five branches of the United States Armed Forces, one of the seven American uniformed services. Formed as a part of the United States Army on 1 August 1907, the USAF was established as a separate branch of the U. S. Armed Forces on 18 September 1947 with the passing of the National Security Act of 1947, it is the youngest branch of the U. S. Armed Forces, the fourth in order of precedence; the USAF is the largest and most technologically advanced air force in the world. The Air Force articulates its core missions as air and space superiority, global integrated intelligence and reconnaissance, rapid global mobility, global strike, command and control; the U. S. Air Force is a military service branch organized within the Department of the Air Force, one of the three military departments of the Department of Defense; the Air Force, through the Department of the Air Force, is headed by the civilian Secretary of the Air Force, who reports to the Secretary of Defense, is appointed by the President with Senate confirmation.
The highest-ranking military officer in the Air Force is the Chief of Staff of the Air Force, who exercises supervision over Air Force units and serves as one of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Air Force components are assigned, as directed by the Secretary of Defense, to the combatant commands, neither the Secretary of the Air Force nor the Chief of Staff of the Air Force have operational command authority over them. Along with conducting independent air and space operations, the U. S. Air Force provides air support for land and naval forces and aids in the recovery of troops in the field; as of 2017, the service operates more than 5,369 military aircraft, 406 ICBMs and 170 military satellites. It has a $161 billion budget and is the second largest service branch, with 318,415 active duty airmen, 140,169 civilian personnel, 69,200 reserve airmen, 105,700 Air National Guard airmen. According to the National Security Act of 1947, which created the USAF: In general, the United States Air Force shall include aviation forces both combat and service not otherwise assigned.
It shall be organized and equipped for prompt and sustained offensive and defensive air operations. The Air Force shall be responsible for the preparation of the air forces necessary for the effective prosecution of war except as otherwise assigned and, in accordance with integrated joint mobilization plans, for the expansion of the peacetime components of the Air Force to meet the needs of war. §8062 of Title 10 US Code defines the purpose of the USAF as: to preserve the peace and security, provide for the defense, of the United States, the Territories and possessions, any areas occupied by the United States. The stated mission of the USAF today is to "fly and win...in air and cyberspace". "The United States Air Force will be a trusted and reliable joint partner with our sister services known for integrity in all of our activities, including supporting the joint mission first and foremost. We will provide compelling air and cyber capabilities for use by the combatant commanders. We will excel as stewards of all Air Force resources in service to the American people, while providing precise and reliable Global Vigilance and Power for the nation".
The five core missions of the Air Force have not changed since the Air Force became independent in 1947, but they have evolved, are now articulated as air and space superiority, global integrated intelligence and reconnaissance, rapid global mobility, global strike, command and control. The purpose of all of these core missions is to provide, what the Air Force states as, global vigilance, global reach, global power. Air superiority is "that degree of dominance in the air battle of one force over another which permits the conduct of operations by the former and its related land, sea and special operations forces at a given time and place without prohibitive interference by the opposing force". Offensive Counterair is defined as "offensive operations to destroy, disrupt, or neutralize enemy aircraft, launch platforms, their supporting structures and systems both before and after launch, but as close to their source as possible". OCA is the preferred method of countering air and missile threats since it attempts to defeat the enemy closer to its source and enjoys the initiative.
OCA comprises attack operations, sweep and suppression/destruction of enemy air defense. Defensive Counter air is defined as "all the defensive measures designed to detect, identify and destroy or negate enemy forces attempting to penetrate or attack through friendly airspace". A major goal of DCA operations, in concert with OCA operations, is to provide an area from which forces can operate, secure from air and missile threats; the DCA mission comprises both passive defense measures. Active defense is "the employment of limited offensive action and counterattacks to deny a contested area or position to the enemy", it includes both ballistic missile defense and air-breathing threat defense, encompasses point defense, area defense, high-value airborne asset defense. Passive defense is "measures taken to reduce the probability of and to minimize the effects of damage caused by hostile action without the intention of taking the initiative", it includes warning.
South Vietnam Air Force
The South Vietnam Air Force the Republic of Vietnam Air Force was the aerial branch of the Republic of Vietnam Military Forces, the official military of the Republic of Vietnam from 1955 to 1975. The VNAF began with a few hand-picked men chosen to fly alongside French pilots during the State of Vietnam era, it grew into the world's sixth largest air force at the height of its power, in 1974. It is an neglected chapter of the history of the Vietnam War as they operated in the shadow of the United States Air Force, it was dissolved in 1975 after the Fall of Saigon. In March 1949, Emperor Bảo Đại requested that the French help set up a Vietnamese military air arm. Pressure was maintained with the assistance of Lt. Col. Nguyễn Văn Hinh, who had flown the B-26 Marauder with the French Air Force during the Second World War. In March 1952, a training school was set up at Nha Trang, the following year two army co-operation squadrons began missions flying the Morane-Saulnier MS.500 Criquet light aircraft.
In 1954, the French allocated a number of Dassault MD.315 Flamant armed light transports to the inventory of this Vietnamese air arm. Vietnamese pilot trainees began to be sent to France for more advanced training. In May 1954, with the fall of Dien Bien Phu, the position of France changed, on January 31, 1955, the Vietnam Air Force was inaugurated; the RVNAF consisted of 58 aircraft and about 1,300 personnel. Aircraft consisted of C-47 Skytrains, Grumman F8F Bearcats. French instructors for pilots and mechanics remained until late 1956, transferred 69 F8F Bearcat aircraft to the VNAF, which throughout the late 1950s were the main strike aircraft. In May 1956, by agreement with the South Vietnamese government, the United States Air Force assumed some training and administrative roles of the RVNAF. Teams from Clark Air Force Base began in 1957 to organize the RVNAF into a model of the USAF when the French training contracts expired. Unlike the ARVN, the VNAF was an all-volunteer service, remaining so until its demise in 1975.
The VNAF recruiting center was located at Tan Son Nhut Air Base. Recruits were given a screening test, followed by a physical examination. Basic requirements for service in the VNAF was to be a Vietnamese citizen. S. 9th grade education for airmen. If a volunteer met all the qualifications, the recruit was sent to basic training at the ARVN training base at Lam Song. Non-commissioned officer training was held at Bien Hoa Air Base. After two months of training, or four months for aviation cadets, the recruit was given an aptitude test and progressed to specialized technical training. From there, he was sent to one of the ARVN wings for journeymen training. Aviation cadets pursued three additional months of specialized training after completing their initial four-month training course; some were sent to the United States for advanced pilot training while non-rated officers pursued training in South Vietnam for their non-flying assignments. This training lasted about nine months, whereupon a cadet served in an operational unit for about a year before receiving a commission as a second lieutenant.
Women served in the VNAF. The Women's Armed Forces Corps was formed to fill non-combat duties beginning in December 1965. Women were assigned to VNAF wings, the Air Logistics Wing, performing duties as personnel specialists and other administrative roles. During the final 1975 offensive, it was not a case of a massive collapse; the ARVN forces in Long Khánh were fighting to the death. A cooperative effort between the ARVN and the VNAF enabled ARVN troops there to hold on. CH-47 helicopters brought in 193 tons of artillery ammunition over two days. A-1 Skyraiders flew in and C-130 Hercules transports dropped massive 15,000-pound daisy cutter bombs on enemy positions. Flying against intense antiaircraft fire, they took a heavy toll on the NVA divisions around Xuân Lộc. On 28 April at 18:06 three A-37 Dragonflys piloted by former VNAF pilots who had defected to the Vietnamese People's Air Force at the fall of Danang, dropped 6 Mk81 250 lb bombs on the VNAF flightline at Tan Son Nhut Air Base destroying several aircraft.
VNAF Northrop F-5s were unable to intercept the A-37s. At dawn on 29 April the VNAF began to haphazardly depart Tan Son Nhut Air Base as A-37s, F-5s, C-7s, C-119s and C-130s departed for Thailand while UH-1s took off in search of the ships of the U. S. Task Force 76 offshore. At 08:00 Lieutenant General Trần Văn Minh, commander of the VNAF, 30 of his staff arrived at the American DAO Compound, demanding evacuation; this signified the complete loss of command and control of the VNAF. Some VNAF aircraft did stay to continue to fight the advancing NVA however. One AC-119K gunship from the 821st Attack Squadron had spent the night of 28/29 April dropping flares and firing on the approaching NVA. At dawn on 29 April two A-1 Skyraiders began patrolling the perimeter of Tan Son Nhut at 2500 feet until Maj. Trương Phùng, one of the two Skyraider pilots was shot down by an SA-7. At 07:00 the AC-119K "Tinh Long" flew by Lt. Trang van Thanh was firing on NVA to the east of Tan Son Nhut when it was hit by a SA-7 missile, fell in flames to the ground.
Sgt. Son, one of the AC-119K gunners tried to escape but his chute tangled in the tail of the airplane. Despite sporadic artillery and rocket fire, Binh Thuy Air Base remained operational throughout 29 April and on the morning of