BI~N( 1[_1 OfUUlOfllL nPERUICIE IN ,IUttA ..






Introdu,ctlon., . .' " • ., • 1

H:nep!~ Do ctr1 r:I.€:' • '.' • ,"' •• • 3

Enemy Sources ,of Suppl~ " . ,0 .3

vo f-Un,e Facto,lJi!'.:!AiU3 •• • • • 5,

Enemy Tactics . • . •• ••• 6


Nont,act;.ical C'Qunlt,el",IUD,@,B,Sltl"E!S '.'. 9 Ta,Gtica1. Countel"mea.~Ul·@,S •• • 13 Indl vid,u"al C()W1ItermeaSlU'es • • JL5 Immed i a:t. e A, c t i 0 fJ. t a Take'

When. and After an Explos,iv€'

Dev1,ee is Tr:1PP,ed., • - ". 22

Un1t Traln1ng. • . . . . . . . 23



Explo,~,1ve' Ant:1pel":sonn:€!'l

Devices .••.•.•• Nlo,~e.xplo'5i v'e' Boob; . ,ttntt't,ank: andV,eh1c,le Mi~e"5 Antlhelioopter ,Mining. '. •



The history or m1::ne and bOilbytrap warfare is a,lmost as long as the history of war 1 tself. Although these devietH! were once cQ,ns1d.el"ed. an 1Ji'if'a:1r and cowardly manner of.' fighting an enemy. nations nont1nued ,to dev,~lop and employ and boobytl"ap,s because they provided an effe' a.nd simple means ,of inflicting

casus Ities upon an e'nemy f'ol"c,e ~

DUl':1 ng 'the WU"" wit h Fra nee '. 19 ~ 6 -19 5 !J " the Viet M1nh use lrnpl'ovia,ed explos1\fe ml.nea and booibytraps etfectc!vely aga1n:st the Prench forces. The VC/'NVA continued, to 1mpl'o've upon these 't~chnlqyes and a!',~ ,employing mines and b'oo'bytra,pe as an eft'ect1v'E! weapo,ns system against free world m111,tary forces in SVN "t.oday. T-h,e' number of Marine casualt1es~ pe~haps better than any other e%ampleJ illustrates ho,w e1'fectl ve the ,enemy is w.1'th these CIl,ev1ces " Mar! nes landed 1nfcrrce In SVN during March 19,65 and durin.gthe f'lrs·t months of fIghting appr,ox1mately 65-'75, perce~~Jii of a.ll flJarin,e easu.alt1es wer'e

C: a U5 ed by m1 ne s &r;lcil, DO 0 b:,rtrap s ., Mue 1) ha 5 been 1 e arne d. alb ou:t ttle e n.em.y m a m.e '1;; hod oS of ,employing mines and b,oobytraps since 11.aI"ch 1965 ~ but d1espi te thiS! knowledge,. Mar'ines ~ at an ala..rming rate" cont.fnue to become casualties as a direct result of ~nem, mineB and boob, During 1968" 37 ,_ 7 per,cent of all l'1'arlne casualtl'e~ were eauaed by the acc1dentlal detona.tion of a mine Qr booby trap. In other words" more than one or every three Mar'1nes .killed!. or


wou'nQ@d! in SVN becomes a.os,sualty as the result of a mIne or boobytra.p... Although

a. gt:'eat ma.ny detection metiU1S.,. ranging r'I'om i.tLtlli'lcate electronie de·vl,ce8 to sp· tr&iru::!di d.ogs s have been deve<ioped" expel"!'" ence ha..s sh.own tha.t. an a.lert Ma:Jt"ine" aware. 'of whalt too look fcl'!" a.nd wh.ere to lOcC!llti:j• is the most effective detection device.

Th,e 1i:l.foI'.m.atiofJI contained In ·this book 1:9 Intended to make' each ~181i"in.e aware of the ways which the VC/NVA use :mines and t).()ob~ to d,e.!;! cl!"lbetlle' meal!sto 'E!i'feetivel.:r prote'et one" s se,l!' a.nd u_nit fl'·om t.h!eQe· d~v:l.ces. To aid 1ft this object.1ve.I, mines and boob,traps. fI'cequ.e.ntl, used by the VC:/NV.A. are· ident1fi@d and d}escri bed.

Study thi:s :l,s.sue i tbe i.nfo}'mat1'~nl 1n

l:t can save I1veH your5 and your-

fellO'W' Marines ~ •

Although m,odU'1e.d til pa.stguerrl11a W'BI'fare expe'rienoe 1n V1etna:m" Ve/NVA mine wa.rfare doctr111e c,ont1'm~!es to c lO'$E!.ly pa;r~ al1el that of the Ch.1nese Communist ,Arm,. ,Ext,ensi ve de~lberatleminef~e1ds, have ru'l't, been enclount,ere,Ci in Vietnam. Rather j the elilemy empl,oys minle'5 :sinSly CIt" tTli e luster-s, to adli1ev,e his purp,ose':s.

In area,s Qccltpied. ,and ·'t:ected b", tree 'world forces !II th.e eQf!my employs mines to Ciielay and lCi!fsIiUpt the UJi! ~ of' roads and patbs and! to eause the allies ,to cU.vel't topces ·t,f) gua.rd and! o le·a.r thoBle rOll tes .In add.l1!::lon t.o thle' tiU"fHll.t to mIll tary traffic and lawful civilIan movement~ the-free W'or,ld personnel and equipment emplo,yeCli in pa:tr'ol11ng the ;['loads and in. det,ectlng .and J"emov1ng mines cl'r·e pr;lme t.argets,.

In contested areas where friendly offensive operations or patrol activities are conducted, ~the enemy emplc,ysmines antl lboob~tralPs to inflict casu,alt1es I dlelay

and channelize movement~ and damage or

de lSI troy ,eq u:.1pme rt t .

·IUI·I- '1 It •


The enemy usee a very limited number of modlel"n ma,ch1ne-p.l',gdu{:ed mi'nes. The ma.1'Ol'·~ 1ty of enemy mines ar'e handmade by the VC using U.,S. dude, d1scarded ammuni tlon and equlpm·ent ~ a:nd materIals thrown away by U.S", feu"olea· as t:r8sb. Nine'ty pe.rce·nt of all the ma.te'l"lal in enero:y" 'mine's andi booby, ... · 15 or U .,S. lorigin ~(see .r1g.1). Of' all ·the explosive lie1.ric'es, pJ"ICiJduced. locally in VC ndn,e fa,c.t,o~ies, 95 percent ·are anti·per,sor.Lrlel bo,o'bytrap'5.


F1gUl"'e 1. --Enemy equipment ca.ptuJi'ed

by' - ali'ines on a,weep olPer-ations 1n ICTZ. 'N1o't e USM- 2,6 ,gr,enade 1 r:L center' of plc:tu.r-e,. Other g,t",enades are locally ~roduced us1ng C-ratlon cans.

All dud ammunition is a source or enemy suppl~ " Afte:r a.lrstrike,g and ut.111el", ,and [no:f"tar missions:1 enemy sal v' teams rnak,e sweeps to c'ollect dud:s '.' L1g'hter o~dna.nee 1s carried away to preparatIon aneas ; lal"gebombs and proJect11e5 are bI"oken down and 8 tripped en. the' spot" In 8,ome cases the l,arger au,cis are rigged! a.1S boobytr,aps where the~ fallen. This i5 ,eiiipec1ally true w'hen the en,emy fee,Is the str1'k;,e or tir-e :missio:n wa.s a. preparatio:n :for' an infantry attack.

However;li d.ud amm.un1 t1o,n 1::; not the anly soyrce. of enemy supply. Carelessly ... carded! ordnance of all sizes and in ,any quan't1tY1s '!1!Qllecl'ted by enelllY' teams. MQrt,at" rounds, rocket,s,~ LAAW' is)

grenades" ,fu'lI,d small arms amillunltio:n abandoned to - 11,s:;h'tetl t:he, 1.oad (O~ i:mproperly se,cureda.nd lost by fast~m.ov1ng Marine'3) halite va.lue as the e.xplo:slve element... in booby-traps. Ev,en ,a,B.:lngle MIG Found,

e'j ected to e leu a. .fii'' can be' used by t'h.!ll: enemy.

Add.! t1onaJ.lY:IJ m8,t' dL:Lscarded. ,as trash aod Ifllrprop'eI'ly such ,a.8 rat..ion ,', a;mm.ut!l t.lon~ beem"ii!!'l,d_ so,dal ~ail1a ,~,

ba t ter' Ie a ~ \!!'IaterprcNM'p ae ng mate'!" 1 alB" ba.ndoliers ~ etc.:~ provide 'th.€!!' enemJl' a, - valua.ble'solll'ce of' supply to ,s;u:ppol"thts fl11ne -wal't3.l'e opera.tions ~ These i'tems have" on tUlmerous 1~8tance8 " been employed srl..H!ces5fully agalns't r~at"ln~3 andthe11" equipment. Thorough pa11,ce or f't:'1endl:r

Dosi t 10 ll'OOrl: de artu'l'ta ,and eom: Ie-te

de5 true II'!!. oftrR'fIhare mamiatol'! to defly'

the enemx th!i,550,uree of supply.


Pr1m1'tive V'C ntlr:'U~ fa-eto:rles are lO(l,ated intne,B.8 t:i'l,ey supply. Gl"ea.t cas-e is taken lntbe camouflage ,and dbl!-' pel"sal of tbes'e' f,aciJlLi tles • Usua.lly (::O!l1- stl'ucted un.d,erg-round I' ,effo!'·t is, 'tiO disperse tbe '~'orkshi'op5 and stQI'ale thf'01ll1:tJ~ eun a. series of' tunnel::;. These' lim1 t

d.e str-uc t i en b,;Y 'Wio.rk i ng ac e idell t;"S,D:m"fI"le-e world f'Qrc~e..~t111Iel'Y, ail" and :navalgun ... f:ire andproteet aga.inst dls,covery. As

imp o'rt a rl t as e t'lftC ea Im.en.t '0 fthe m.jl ne' fllct-ol"Y I' is th.e mol;1,.11i t~ of it,s PJle~sollnel and equ.:lpment.. :Ev~:n While tb~ mine f'<1':l,e,t;ot')' 1 s be ing se't tIled ;[ n one po,S 1 ,t, te,n.~, nerw

ptHil. il ti'OM, a.1' e bel!'ili!lu"epall"edfol" l'ap:1d! d:tspl,acem:ent . Ra.l'le~l" 'dI.oes a mine tilil!C t01r'Y


~em.aln in one' place any longer than a few 'w,e,eks ~ Th,e,re is no dl,stinct pattern 01" movement. "' havE! ,b'e'en known to, ,r'etuf'n. to, pr-e!,v1ous p08, 1'1;;10:0:5, evena,rte'~ 'tha:t posit.1o'n ha.,9, been dIs,cover-,ed ,and!.

des troyed by Marine ,forc'es '.

NVA,-tl'"'s:ined engine,er's Pl"'QviJie' t'he skilled nucl,eu5 for the ene~y mine factori,eEl, bu t :supervis1.on and labol" ar,e pl"imarl1y Vt:. The typIcal ou,tpu~ of a loca.l VC mine f'actory ls abcnJlt 135 mines and e)!,plosive devicles per month.



As we improve in our abil1.tyt,o detect Ih1 nes j; the enemy C ountle:rs with new tw1.s ta such as increased use of' b'oobltl"B.P,S attached to a basic mi'ne' to create casual'~les among m1ne-clearing personnel i larger mines burled Q,eeper' wi th reduc ed!. ac'tivatl,on pressure; and pressure, electric de'conatoI's with offset devices to. explode Pdnes under vehf e Lea , COlDmand-detonating mlne~ normally used in d.ensely,ted area.s and pressure-type devlc,€'s in less popula..ted sections. The heaviest 'mining is along of near- ,fixed Install,at1ons.

The enemy makes ,every ,ef:fc.r't ,to avo.1d repeating pra~t1ces wh1chjo wnen ana,lyz,ed, eould l~dlcate a pattern. Therefope~ the VC!NVA doet:r1:ne stress,es where to use mine!S I not hOil. Lis t,ed below are a few of the kindLs 'of' p Lacas where enemy a.nti tank and antlv,ehieula.l" mines may tHe found,':,

.Roa.d j'llrtctlons and the areas In the vicinity of' the' road! nea!" the'3 unction ~


with a.11 the mines set to, dietonate simultaneously.

1.,:Bridges and the' appr'oa,ch,es 5 to 15 me" ere, t'l'orn the bI"1.d.g,es '.

" Old wheel and tread 'track,s in the :road~ with"'e t.aken 't,O dU,plicsd;:e 'the

tl"'31c,1( after mine emplacrE!'Ment •

• ' Ur.lCierneath rosods - 'tu-O'ne11ng in f"r'o.m the should.ers.

• P'olholes in the ro'ad .

• Areas recently cleared by free world! rnlitar'y forces. The enemy repla.ces the mi nea 'tha 'been taken out-.


EnemlY tactIcs in emplac:1ng a:nt,ipet:'6Qn~ nel mines and boobj'traps d1f'l'er fl'"lomthose used In antitank ami antlveh1cular' ,mining

olnl. y where they put them. Locations

mcs commonly used by the VC/NVA to empla,ce antipersonnel mines and 'booby traps are:

.',NarrQw pas5 ges. • Paddy dikes.

" Trail Juno tiQr'U;ii"

'. HedS)e,row8 a.nd tree line,s;. I.Tunnels and eaves"

I.Penc,fa' ~ines and sat'as.

I. Tree br,anei1es overhanging trail.s .

• L1k~ly CP sites .

• ,High grou.nd and ridgellnes.

'. Shady areas"

• Stream :fords •

• We'll,s and nat'U.ral wat"el"':tng pOi.nts on s'trewns and 1"1 ve'r',s •

• 'Likely helicopter l,anding 2,o:oes,.

~, Remembel:' : Any place a. Marine f'l',equ.ent ly walks, I' t:.aies covell" rests ~ or draws wat'er' is a lUc:e1J lo,ca.tion for enemy ant,ipersonnel mines and boobytra:ps.




Countermeasures SI"e 'tho'Be act:1ons ~ bo'tb tact1ea~ an~ ncntact1cal~ th~t can be

ta.ken by t5 and/or 111(:U Ma~1rD:e s whiclt'l reduce the mine and bQoby-tra:p thr'eat. Countermea.sures decrease the e.fu~'my Ii s

ab111 ty to emp lace rnin,E:'s and booby traps

or limit their effectiveness 1f they are empla,ced .'


The' roost efl'ectlve' way t.o counter 'the ,enemy F i!ll m1ne and booby trap thl"'eat is to destroy thls threat at ita l;lOou:rce,; 1.e.~ t,he ,elimina:tlon of the V'C/NVA m!neandl boobyt;r-a.p f"actQrles and tIle sources of supply ,for tbese factories.

,Every e!'fort must be made to locate existing enemy mine ana booby'tril:!!p f'aotorol,lS's ,and to aetermine like ly locatlon6i 1'01" future' factor" sites" Hoi Chanhs ~ PO'"/" s and ca.;pt.ured docu.merats mUSl't be ca.refully prooessed because ~ with ,skillful hand11nB, they provide vita.l InfoMDatio:n on f'a.c'toI'~ location sites. Onoe round~ existing faotories and future locat1,on.s must be

made unusable.

Mor,@' impoZ'tant than neutralizing tb.e enemy m S mme and b,oobytrap .fa.ctorIes ~ 1,5 the denial to' the enemy of the source of supply with which he operates these fac:'tcr1efil; i" e." u.nexploded U .,15. oI"'dina:r'.lce"

d.1 IS cardi e d eq uipment:andl 1:mp!!:"ope r 1.y d,rEl' B troyed trash., The fact :t;ha t 11.. S ", ordnance and sa.l:'J'agea.ble trash falls into enem:.' ha.nds

can !be tra~ed to several 1'a.ct,ors::


10 [in'" xp laded Or.dnanc·e

The fir5t talc tor and. an ilmportant source of unexploded ordnance fer 'th.e enero;y 1.s pl'Qvld.ed 'by the r.ree worldl mllitary fo·pee II s employment ot alrJ artillery and nava.l gunt'ire' =tIupport. Som,e ordnance 1te'iIlls fall to detona.te',J' become a ~Idudn and! prcrv1de a potentIal .mine or 'bo,obytrap., A 11 Marines who lemploy' 1'1rlE" supp,ort should cons1d,e'1' this, fact - in tbe empl,oyment of ~upportins arms I and be 'careful not to call ,for fires 1n excees of wha:,t 1s. requ1-red t.;" aeconp11sh, the mission.

10 Aband'oned Nun1 t ions

The sec'ondf,Elc tor.i! another important souree of exploa:1 ve 1IIliter'1el supply fOT the ,enemY'!it mine and booby'trap operations, 15 ahand.oned. or lost munitions., The following examp le's" it allowed to oeeur , wil]l. as sis t the enemY' ::lnhis ef'rorts: II unit (l·vel"stoeks ammu ... n1tlon and then is l'equil"ed to move en sho.rt. notice with only a hastc load. T'he lI'ema1n1ng anunun.ition is left ant-he aband,oned pos1 t1cn •

• Ammunition Randling Procedures. A JJ.n1 t a ttempt'5 t C! turn 1 n ex t: es s ammuni·t; 1 em to an ASP (ammunl ticn supply poln't) and is refused due to lneff1e1ent disposal procedures .

• A ·se C.r .Ammunition,. A unit discl!.Pda

ammun on eans 1der!ed :unse·rv1.c cable uecause

of dirt, tarnish, ;mud 'or other avoidable concU t10ns or minor 1m,perfe,et.:1ons •

• Loss in Transit. A helicopter sling breaks ,o:n an ammu.nltio:n resu.pply mi,sslon a.nd a.ll Or" a port-ioll of the load 1s sca.ttered across the countrysIde.


o ImproperlY Destroyed Trash.

The last f,act,oI', bu't far fl'om least 1mport,ant to the e'ne~ 'I'S mi ne and booby'trap Pl"ogl"aJII;I 18 his source of' :supply from fr1.endly-trash" All items cona1dler:ed unusable I.1Jl1 r'ree w'orld forces must be ceJll-' pletely dle5tl'oy,ed or properly d1sposed of. Figure 2 shows one eli:"ampl,e of the' I"esult~ of an improperly ~o11ced f:r:1endly a,res,of' operations '., Disca.rded C'~I'tl'tlon/sodia cans are a.l:so commonly used in a type or boo'Oytra.,p whicn 1s CDiL6tructed with ,an ",,26 grenade. The :sar,et~ pin 150 removed and tbe grenade Is put in the ean , Whe't:i tbe can is dis turbed ~ 'he gremUie s cut:t the 6POO':n pop,s and th,e ,grenade detona,tes.

Figure 2.--Shown 15 a VO grenade made tr'om locally ,a,va-iiahle materials 10- cludln,g a carelessly d1s,cud,ed '''Coke''


•• 111'1

The VI P (Volunteler Informant Program) has pro'v"ed to. be an incI"l!!B:.s'inl!Cly effect.1ve c'ountermeasure to. the enem:;r m s, mine and 'boobyt:rap ef'!'Ol"'ts. This pl'ogI"aJn l',ewar'ds Vletnamese lnd1 vldu:els who turn, in dud.

,and ,aband.oned mu.n1 ions. Continued lempha:sIs on this pr'ogl"'aM will s1gniflea.n,tly decrea.Si! the enel'll.J capacity ,to. €rnploy U.,S. ordnance aga1nst free wor'ld fOI"ces '.' (See Cig,. 3.) DUI'ing one period J' laB of 259 pa,ments in tne' 'III MiAii' area were ''1.;10 chl1dr,en who turned in 'explQsl~es, suj_table 1"'01" the manuracture of booby traps. T'o en~ sure, that the' ett,ec.t1ve'ness. 0'£ VIP rea,che.s, its full lPote'ntial, it ls the r,e'spcn1s1b.l11ty of' every' indiv1dual Mai"'ine and eacb lImrine' un1 t ,to. give VIP' their complete' :Bupport.

F1g:ure 3.- ... Sh.own here Is the VIF' (_VO_llulteel:" InfoJ"mar;t Program) in action. Articles on g~ound hs.'V"e.' been 'tlU"ned! in _ to Mal"ines by local villagers.



Ta,ct1ca~ eountermeasures employed by Marine units are' v'er" e-.f'.feetiv'e in !'educ~ Ingthe e!l'lLemy ~ s ca.pab.lll ty of ,empla.c1ng mines ,orlboobytl"&ps if such cou'n·termea,;suI',i:!,S are a.ggressi yel~ planned and, aXE-outed., Unit co:mmand,el's have sev'eral ta .. o.t1c:al measures

at their d1sposalJl, in.cluding the employment of SO:P'hi5t ic.a.ted. e:l"ectI'lo,ll1ic d'BV1c@'5. They ar,e:

I. Employ' portable ground r,adar and se1s.m1c in rus10n 'dev:lces .

• ' ainta1ninl a. c.onstan.t p"hysical presence 'through.out the TAOR to includ,e ou.t~ posting of' key roads,. This 1s the' mo,st eff'Eict1 veta,ctica.l eOW'ltern!ie'asu1"e' ~ but ,somet;·1rftes difficult to a"c'h1eve because ot the number of _ QI"ines l"equ.ired tOI ens~(u',e good co v,e ra.lI€!' •

1.'Conduc'ting ,aggressive patrQl11ng,.

• Conducting, l'e'ccn:maissa.n,ce patrols to v,er:if" 5-2 1:ntell1gence reports ~

• 'Employing SCou,t ..... ,sml,Per teams. ,.,IConduct1ng snmll unit 'cordlo'n W'1Id search Qperatlons in coo,rdlna't.lon with Vietnamese Mits/police •

• Emp.l,o;y1:n,I!!:' HlI f1.r,e:1$ oVer roads, or over sp aific areas.

• Emplo,1ng small s tay"'lbehind pa. troIs dr-,op:p,ed off unno'tl,ced from unltspa.ss1ng

near a road!. -

," P',a v.1ng e,r' .:;d.llng: d1r't :roads,. 1.,Patrolling and Clu'tpost1ng OIl and ne'ar roads.

• Employ'1ng ,K'it Car,son SCGU'to '. Using khe nat~ve ability ot the Kit Carson Scouts~ eou:pled Wi1tbtbelr ,1mCi<wledg,e of. the' ar,e,a,

(lIlf o'j;)el"a.t:t.'ons and VO ac't1vlties ~ ,can provl!! highl;y u8,ef'ul in de'vlces. Durins:


Octob~r 19'68 J Kl t Car on Scouts found 2,29 IIdne-s and boebytraps :1nthe III MAF area .

• Scout Doss '", 'Using s[ple'Ci,ally trained dogs (see fig", JiI.) to d.etect the scent left by the l.nd1 vidual ,emplac1'ng a mine or boobytl"ap '. T.h1.s ac ent is detecta.ble l-!4 day,s aft,e!' emplae,em.en,t. Since boobyt,rap8 are g,enerally emplaced shoI-'tly afte'l' 1n1t1~ a.t1on of fl"ie'ndly operations,. the chance'

of cI1sc.,overy by ,dQgs 1sgood. A trained dog will u:;;e his vi,sion to deteet 'tripwIre's, and unnatural elements" and his hearing to d,etect sQund waves created by tripwire vibration ., Ma.n~r' dogs dete,ct Q, tripwire wh.en 1 touches th.e body hail" of the1r fore'h~g5 or ehe$t '. )!ost are iI.,gile e':I:lo,ugh to back a.way before' 1t is trIpped. Ot' 119 dogs k11~e.d in SVN slnce January 1967 ~

onl;y seven were killed !by 'bcobyt.raps .. '

Figure J;j. ~-8peeia.llytI'alned c),o,gs

such as the one 'Shown. here ,have proven extremely valuable :in ,detecting enemy mines and boob~traps '0'


lnd :1. v :1.dua.l count el"'me.a:.$Ure.~ are-thQ ::;ke mea.sUl"€!S 'ea~h and every MBr1n'!e' can ta:ket,o dlnrl.nishthe e.ffe·c't1 v'en'ess 0.1" a .mineor booby't:rap d·9vl.,ce whIch has been em.plac'edlo• and! 18 .found Ot' Is ac:c:1dentally detonated. This can 'Ole lie complisbed thl"ough 1.oa1 pro·te-ctlvlI;! lI!ea;sur€s.~ detection. and."uc" ·I;1on. me83urea ~ avo1,oar:H.:e o.r ex-pIons:!",€, devica's ~ and throu,gh a.ppl:1ca. t1oril. ct, 1;rnmedl.~ a:te .!!Lct1.on whel1 an ,explosive device has been. aeeid, deton.ated ..

O,Physica.l Protective Countermea.:sures Tbe ind1·vldua.l Marine' ca.ntake the·se step:5 t.o reduce the ef!',ectlve]].ess of' e.oem;y Ild[H~5, :

• Wea.r bo,dy armol" and helmet.

!. Sandbag 'veh1c Ie :floorIng ... WhetJ. pO!lsl~ ble~ pl.a.e@ a. h,ea;vy :rubber mat aver sandbags to reduce .seco.ndary f'l'agm.ents aueh as shrapnel~ sand~ stan~s and pieces or sandba~ ..

-Keep arm~ alld leg.s irllsicl:'e ¥'ehicle'sta ach1e·ve maximum prote'ct1on from

I. Ma,lri:l;;a:1n propelr distance f'rom other pel'S onne 1 ..

• I1on'!t; tl".a.'!"'el alone.

'.' Don It.; pick up or ·touch wha.t applsar to be' attract1ve "souvenirs!!. Tne VC/NV.A pl"ey IJP'o:nt.he natural curiosity of' ,Ma:ro!ne,g ,and .ihelr desire to take nome ill :5 ouv,eni.r •. "Beware: Tha.t '''souvenir!! 1:;; :moat likely

o";i: bQob~rtra.p.

o Detec'tl,cm Couflt'ermeaSUli:'es Oneeem_J)lao,e'd~, .8. mine OI' :Coobytr'.ap must be .found ·o,e.f·ore it eausee m'l[ casu ... alt:1es th:rougbaccldental d,e'tonat1olll \)I,


a. Marine., UnfOl"·tllnat,ely, too many booby, are d·sccvel"ed only after they - explode" It l's imperative that detection techniques be' stre'ssed. DetectIon []'lay be by:

• V1.sua.l Inspl@ct1on,. At pr'e'se'nt ~th.e' 'be'st mine and boob,ytra:p de't,ectol' 1n the ,t'Il'ar'1ne Corps is an alert and o'bsel'ViiU],t 'Marine" Bach Marine must KnO'W' the areas in whIch bQobytl"aps and! min'es, are' normally found and be al,e'l"'t to'r 'things \l'Ihl'c·h ''',just (i.on ~ t lCCik: r1gh,'t. III Examples arE!:

IloIud. smears II mudbal1s .. dungJ OI' IS. b,oa.rd en the rQad ,_

.Apparen road repa1r~ new fill or paving patchesl d1chlng or culvert work . • Wires leading away i'r,ol'll the side of' th@ road •

• Tripwire's across the trails· along , of' road5 at IUc:ely' amb'ul:!,h sites! across the most aceessibl'e route :thr'ough dense vegE!:'tatiol'lj at fO!I'ds ~ (Uteh@s and a'C:~Q'SS rice paddy cUke·s .. '

I.T,err.a.ln teatu:l"e'8whlch do not appe,ar Mtllif'al. Cut ve'getation dries aru'!. ch.anges co,la,r j !'a'in if.a~ wash a'~ary covel'; matlifu'ia.l a.nd 'caMS e an ,@xpl.'oo1ve de-viole t,o sink le.a.ving a s!J.I'fa'ce depr,€'ss.lon, a covered de'vice: ma" appear as ,s. mou.nd,

1 •• Suspicious items in tre,es ~ branches, or bus,hes.

• ark1ngs used by V('VlIN'A to 1ncU,c8,''I::;e the location of' 8. mine or b,ooby-tra.p •

• ' Prohing. Suspicious apo,t:s must be' oare-· f'ully probed wi t,b a. probe-olE" ba.yone·t.

I. MinE!! de'teet-or,s,. Mine detec'tors dc'signed ,to ,ass,la,t the Individual Mari,ne in a de'ta11,edi ~ ,CI'ellbe:rate SiIIU!Jlep of a specific ar-ea , usu,a.lly e. road ... , Partic.ular


at t,ent 1 (HIl mus, t be givI!;l'n.t at he time :f's.'ct ors, @f the 1.~d1v.idua.l swe,eplng 81tYiIa.:UrJTI.~ 51 nee cnrerha5re.J opening of a road can mean an 1ne.f:fe'(l't:1vt!;! sweep and quite' pClssiJ::Il.y destruction or in,f Ul'jI' to vehicula:r 'traffic and: personnel" The a,vE'!l" sweep !'at.e' "!Tu'i@s from ~lmoi!!J't nothing 'to, ai:HJ1Jlt ~5 m.p.h. depending ~ of' Ci01l1rse" on the' proficiency

of the tea:m and the number of COllt!8!CtS encountered. In using de~@ctors~ ce~ta1n c,oh31derat1orlsm'll8:t be kept in mind.:

'd~~r'a,vele,d: rgad.:; m.ake it difficult for tbe AN/P'!ltS-4 aetectQI" to d1scrimina:te be'tw,e'tU!, l"eal. andfalsetaI"ge't:s.

Ii Metallic debris~, such as can to;ps i1 small arms a.rnmun1.t:1o:n aa,se':8t,Bndmetal fragment:.'9i from. art:111e'I'Y !l:"ound~ fll"ed. over r-eads ·at n1gh.t tQ dls.cQur',age mine laJfl~g" make' it for the ~:N'lP153: d,ete'ctoI' 'to a1scr'i:rnlnate betWlI'te'1l rea.lanClfals,e' targets .

• The ' f'or the ene.myto bury mines d.eeper than designed, detleo't:1on d,e;:l'ths~ and! 'to ~$elf.b'era'tel:y pla.n!!; metailJ.1c debr:!.s,

In the road j ca:lls fol'" Qadi t.1ona.l caut·1on 1n the use of detectors.

I. Op'€'l'" 8 tc)'[I" fatigue'" COlui,lderotio:n must '!]e gi vim ,to 'the :I.a. tlgue exp'erlenced 'by opel"a.toI's after 20 iil1nute:8 ,of \llE!'ar:1ng de't:,eet,or ,ea.r-p,henes" 'This condition can be delay'ed to 1 OF 2 hours by we-8!.1"1ng earphones over the helmet sotba.t:;fto ~ inches e:xlst ibetween leal'" Qnd phone" Thi,~ also p@,lt"'n1Ilts tbe op·e:r.a tOf' to, verbal alert tor

aJ:1, ambush"

• Use of the Buddy System.... 'This 9ust,em rs not only useful J.nt..I"Qin1ng ;tfJ.e'xpe:r1.~ @need MaI'irJ,E.'s~. but 8.15,0 pI'olvld,es an e)rtra. margin of .9af'etyto tbe indl v1dualo wh.O' employ it '. Tlillo 'wc'I"k1:ng toge't.her,,, 1l'J ·the same- 8'l"es, :ha,ve the advantage 'Of

lncrea.sed detectigtl capab:111.ty .• mutual rea.stn.l.rance, and shared knowledge.

II) .Destl"uetl(.m. Counter.mea,5,ures

Onc.e d,etec teet ~ and :Ooo:bytraps mu;!rt be marked and/ol" lIest!',oy,ed in pla.ce by thle d1sc:over:1ng pecrsQ,n o,r unit to proevent acc:ldenrt:b.:l d,etonat.lon by a :f' unit or lnd.1.vldual Marine. Considera.tions fm:" de:stru.c·tion are =

'.' Min es. and booby traps should not be moved unless absolutely necessary and then only by qua.l1f'1ed. EOD or enginee:rpe:rsonnel. Many booby t:r a.p 5 .are themselves boobytrs:ppedj, a.nd if d.1.eiturbedl. w1ll detonate the Blssocla·ted diev1c e.

I.Explos1ve devices fiihould be destroyed by engineers.. :Ir e:ng1nee'I"'s are not a:vailo.ble ~ th.en. Clevie es may !be destroyed by selected qualified personnel within each un1'!:; •

,., a.nd boabytrsps may be destroyed or neutralized by us .. e of gl'app.l1n.g haoks ~ demol1 tlo·ns:.l and a'rtille'ry fires.. The LVTE 11ne·ch9.I"ge and the LVTE with plow-shaped mine exca.vator (figs" 5 a.nd 6) sh.ou1d be considered for 'Use Ih .8.l'·,ea.s of high mine density.

I;' Avo1d,!IiJlce Cou.nt'erme8.5UreS

Stri~t application of training and oarefU.l planning of movements thr'ough danger area.s will lenabla unit commanders and to reduce ca.sua.lties by simply ~voldlng 'tne· explosive devices.. The un1 t le&der' must- analy z.e .rl'om tb~ enemy·j:; view ... point eaeh area throuSh which hie' intends tomoY's :h1s men. He' m'l1s·t ask hims,elf the questlon~ '~lf I 'Were the 'enemy" where would I put the boobytra.ff?t' This.'1on can and should 1 nfl uenee bo,th a~i'n19'tI'a t 1 ve


Figure 5 .. --The LVTE firing its organic lihecharge to (llear mim!:9.

Figure 6. --The' LVTE wIth 1 ts plow-sha.ped mine eKcava:tor.


a:n.d tactical nlO'\!,lenu;mts and Ie:; ;a facto!' to be considered in the scbeme of' maneuver durIng an a.ttaok '. Seme' sUJggested means fo,:r avoidllng mines and booby'trs:ps

I. Sta.y off trails:l! foo'tpa't'hl'l" cart trackl',:!" or other likely 1"'out'es of tr,Qvel as !IIll;U:;:·h ae po,sslble. Vary rou.tes used to

villages aM key tel"lI"a.1.n fE!'il't.u.res., Ilh3c' of

'the same route twice is an l:nvt'ta:tlon to the enemy to ,employ booby traps . Ke,ep the 'VC/NVA g'Ues,sing aa Eo which route :will be used next '"

.,!I1:ove here local inhabitants moVe.

These peo]J,le know the lcuJa'lt,10n of' mos't, mines and boobytrap:s and will a,void these areas. 1m a village", sta~ near the \1'11- agel's and watch which build:i:n,gsthey use., Use V'i,etnamese as guIdes 'whenever J)loss1ble. Hav'e sufficient mon.ey on nand to pay for information on mine and b,oobytrap loca..tlo:rll' and ,support VIP •

• Avoid patterns. Constantly change direction of movement. Cheek times nf departure and return of pa trots to ensure , .for example_, that all daylight patrols

don It return before sU.pper and all nighttime patrols depart after SIJPper. Avoid the repeated use of t,hi:!! same bJ.vou·ac ar-eas ,

-Maintain 1ntepvals of 15 meters between men and 10'0 me'ters between men: and tracked vehicles. In view of the' fa.ct tha·t, the 'effeet1've radius of the )126 grenade Is 15 me,ters., and that trorwn;;l' 00" mO!"e casualties are sufter-eo fo'1" boobytra:p grenade acc:ident13 detonated, th.e main'ti'fmance of pr'oper lnter\ral is mOB t illlportant •

• Move slo'wly,. Rapid movement genel"ates careles,sl'le·s~. A unit must be all.llw'ed sur ... , rieSent time to move to its objective.

"At 't.imes the enemy will sho'w themselves onl), when tbe:l want to be Se'E:D. WhEm


pursuing the ,eneD'lIJ ill' be espee1fiL1J.y a.l€T"1t; for de11,'b1e:rstely ,empl,ac,ed blJ,o'bJl'traps on

the axl:s of ad'v;:rn,ce,. -

.Artillery mortal'" f'lI'les near and in 'the area, o,f olpe'~e.t1onBwl11 not only lct1scourage boo,brtrap em,pla,cem,ent, but w1.11 also neutralIze devices - 'bl s,ympa;the'tic d.etona"ti'On.i, o,,"',ertur'nl,ng and. bW",,':1ng em-, plac,ed mines I' and l"'llptu.~'lng tril:l'W'il"Els ~ Employment of' tbes,'a fir,es be&1de ,8., road I 'b'e-Ear,e and dlU'ing a rQa.d :\j,: eep ~ will conwsnd de tonation of I'oa.d: mines,.

"'At all time:s ~ a 11gi'h twei.e;ht s'tick (bamboo) 01" a slender is'teel rod can be helpful. if used ' 0' feel for tri,pwires . .. Muk Cle't e c t ed 1111 neB ,and b cob, ,t ra:p is so' 'tnose follow:1I1g may a.vo1d 'them, .

• ,Uellcopters 'Cum be used to ex.tract a unit which flnds itself ina heavily boobytrapped aI'lt8..

-At., the :flank:B of a road ar,e I),oob,trapp,ed out to 250 meters as an Qbatacle to :r:'ca.di a~e'ep. security teams. Tanks" the 1 nf,an'try , can deton8't,e th,ese boc' 'When tratf'1caibi11ty perm1t3~, t,anks moving o,ff and pal"allelto 'the I'O,ad sweeps ean also reduce tank: .roadmining incident,s. Random. s,~decticn ,of tank traveI'l 'b,etween road and adJaeent t'I!l'I"I"a.1n will kee:p 'th,€' NVA lues"s,ins; aa to the actual rout e th.e tank will t. ake ' .

• When en'li roads ~ 5ta.y in the Wlell-used PQrt1QI'Ir and o:ff should.e'l"s.,

- .Pol.low 'the 't;roticks of the'vehle le' ahead.

If there 1,9 no veh1.cle abea..d,j at-ay out. of' tile .~uts .

• Avo~d ~ole8~ depress1ons~ and obJects lying ,on tine poaa.

,RJe:membe.r: A booby-trap too easily det'ect'ed ~,an be' a ruse f'lesul.ting in, detona:'ti,o:n o·f other' explosive devlces emplaced ne'arby.



Imm.ed1a.te ,Actio:" To 'TJike When ~ilnd After an 'Exp]l,oslve Device Is Tr'ipp'ed

It is recogn1zedtl'lat little r'ea,c'tion time 'Bx1stl6 once the detcmat10n chain sta~rta. 'The m.a:x1mum drela), tOl' 'the M26 and ,fo:re1gn grenades 'ranges from ~to 9 seeenea, If the delay element has been m,cdlfiedl" the minimum fu.sede,la.yciEUl be le's9 'than 1 1/2 se'conn,g,. However ,s1nce 'the time available cannot be predl'ct'ed:j' certain lmmecliate action can assist in [', ea.sualtl,e's

and 'the d.egree of personal 1nj:ury.

O'lnned1ate Ac't1on

,F'IRST:, Be .aler-t for the, ~lpOp~1 of the exploding caplithe tug of the tl"1.pw1r,e oJ 01"- the warning' of another Nar1n,e.

SECO:ND,: Sound, a warning so that others, may t.ake cOover.

mum: Drop to the ground 1mro'ea1atell' ,.

Immediate ,a.,etlan is d,esignedl as an Instinet.ive reaction based. on min Inum fuse delay., Wb~Hl using it:: also remem~,El'I'~;

'.'00 not ,attelll~rt to outrun the explosl,on., The, 800 fragments of the M2Ei gl"emule - have

an initial \l'lel'oe1ty of over 5000 feet per second. During the available dela', ~ how'Iie'vel" bl"l,ef'j an 1ndi vidual can best-remove himself from the corte of" the e,xplos;1,on by dropping to' 'be sround. He:!ill. assume

a m1.n1mum ~,ela.y in every ca.-Be •

• 'If when dr,opping to the ground 11 present the smallest ta.rget t'o,the' f'ol"'ce C r the ,ex:plosio!l'l by pOint1ng 'the feet 1111 the d1:re.ct1.on of the charge •

• 'A,lltho,se nearbY' 9bcfU,ld drop to the ground when the wa.rning is, sounded.


·,00 not 1mmedJl.a't,ely rush to the aid

of' Marr:'i:nes wO!Jlndied. bY!II:ines a·.t' booibyt!',a.p5., F:reqlllen'tlytbeI"e' l,s, 2, sec'ond, booby tra.p in t.he vlc.1nlt~o,rthe first. The man n.ear'-, est each casualty should carefully e1ear h.i,s way to thewounde'd indlv1dua.l and reN'laer first ai.d. Un.dle!" no circUlILstances .Shou.ld, the un! t lead,ers or others crowd near the- w'ound,ed m_en.

-Conduct a br1.,e·' but careful .se·arch for otbel'" e·x,plosi v,e d.ev1.ces in: the imme-, dta(te 'li1 clni t:y 'b,ef'ore' moving on .

• If a device is tripped and do~s not e.xplode' ~ fo 110iW the same 1mmedia.t"ea.ct i on and then blow it in :pla.ce.


We have dis aussed CQut:lJ't,el"measunes Ii ta.ctical c>()unte'l"measures and ind.ividual CCH.l.nterme'a"surE!s. Simply rea1- 1z1nl!!;t.ha.tthe'se counteromeaSUl"es exist 1sn1t; suffIcient. It 1s 1mperat:f've that ever, Marine becomes knowledgeable of a.nd proficient in the execution of the countermea:atJ.:I"e's discussed. Thhitas.k can be a.ecornpl..ished tbr'ough an a.ggressive :and compr-enensive unit and ind.ividual training prog'l"am. Su,chtr,a1.nlng, shc,u].d emphasize:

'. Wearing of hel!IIE:,t5and body armQ(' •

• Dispers ion between men. •

• Al'1';l'l['

'. Vl,6ua:l de'teciion teehniqu'e,s .

• Operation af electronic detection 'eq u.ipm.ent •

• Demo11t~on training which enables Martines t.o destro'y explo,sive devices in pla,ce.

," Em.plc:YPI.ent of the budd., system., .' Avcd_d an e'f! of pa t:terns ,.

I.' I[lJJT.le d ial t.e ae tl,on p roo cJ~'!dul'es a..nd ac t ion to, 1t:a.kJe ~ub,s,eque:nt to' the d,elt~ona t1ol:"1 o'r an e<1tplo~:l.lIjI'e de'vice.



If the enem3 eiiIpl.iEU~,es m1'n,es or booby'tra'ps in 1Ii:he vicinity of' villages OJ" in

ar'a a 5whe 1"e !b.e moves 01" e'.xp e c t s to mOlllfe,;

he of'ten indicate6 the 1I.,Qcat1on or diir'ection or the eJq)losive d'evices in some iDs-nne!"',,, Tbe V'C'/NVAmay not ,always :follow the exa.mples in this pu.blleai;;i,," in absolute detail, but as .a gen,er:e.l I"ule i he indicatoI"s al"~ usually round in a. I'egular pattern suoh as sticks or stones in a line or ,st leks placed on or in the I2:round '. Th1 is'lty of' patt'i!.:rn is 'the daflgel" sl.g,na.l (see tig. n , Any a:rrange'm,ent of i!I tl,cks

and .stone6 which appears unnatural indica.tes a s,t:rong poss1b111 t:y a,r the pr,esence 'of

Flg,uf:'e 7. --,Note' the .row of rocks: on

top Q,f br1.tiS,e' beam at tne {'o,ot o,r the br1dge '. -This is typical of the' warn1ng .sillns used by the VC!NVA to warn o.! t.hei.r mlning- actlv1t1e:s"


:mine,s and booby-traps '. The iJ.lust.ratloflS f'ollow are ,examples Olf markin,g ';~ terns, lm:11c'atin.g tbe p:re',setJI(:e' o,r mines

,and bQohytraps which heve been eneou:l'.ite~ed thllilli far' in svn.

<, <,




A. T',tu"'ee' '5tlGk:!i5 aI'I@, placled on. the tpall in 'the 't"o:rm of a.n !rl'1owhead ,. Th.e' irnpolrt~t1t t:hlnstQ r'emembe'l"l 1s that the, pOil'l.t lof theaf'r'ow dc'ens not always plQint In tbe direct! on of the boobytl"s.p. The symbol can. only be co,t'ls1der-ed a.s a :m.e:ans to 1dlen.t:if',Jiin a!l'ea.

as be1ng boob,tl"a.PP,ed ..

B. A va.r:iatlon o.fthetlilree-'st1ck: aI'I'o'Wtiea.d shows a_ .f'Ol.l!!l'th :s'tilck, Aga:ln., no defin1 te pa:t·telr'r'i :ha.s been es:'tab11snea. a,:s 'to' dtl"eetioril, ol"the reason foI' the fOUl"t.tIi, stt1e:k (us,uall;y :iJrokefJ.) • But it does mean. boobytI" In - this alt"ea.

C; • The ~'i II arrangement is ,som,etimes f,ound fill'tber down the' ,fl'om tbl!l Ifu,"!:'owh@a.d .1i'ldi.cating the 11m t of 'the d~U'lgel.r area. No patt'el'n or' sp,ec1:f'lc dll,sta~ee :i1a.6 he~m establl,shed.



As shcrwn ~ 'th15 imarker iU:S1i.l:all~ irJIdii.lcat,es a b,oobytre,pwlthin tbe squ.are ,', Moat, o.t these s,ymi)Qls _ found have !been 1,a1d out

wi tb bamboo IBto ~'2 ;1:.nches in le'ngth",

, -".

A pi<€:ce ,ofba:-Irtrt:lcllo 6 tiC) 8 inches lOlng 1,s st~ek- 1n th.e grou!I'I!d at an.llI,gle of' l,j15i d,eS1l'eeB. Generally jboobytraps cantle €>qpec.ted allong tbe a~19 of' bhe bamboo, in el:therl' d1:r'ec:t;lon ,',


The' ba.mboo trIp'od oon81.9ot5 of' bamboo, usually abc,ut 18 inches long" tied to- 8,ether' 11..0 f,Ol'rr1 a tripod. Wire:li vines it

cord lor string 1,s wrap,ped around the legs neal'" the bo'ttom to hold the tripod in pla.ce. Tbis device has been. fou.nd directly ove'I" punj 1pi'ts ~ 'baoby'traps:t and ndnes.


A ," The enemy haa been known to break the tops, of small saplings, and bushes pointing the oro,ken part in 'the di!',ec t10n of the

bo QI::;i'Y t ,riBLp~Had a:r e a", U,:;!U e.,lly ml nee and]

boobytra.:p',5 are planted 50 to 100 Ine,ters f:rom -tnt s markeT'.

,S. It sti,c,t or le'ngth of bamboo brok,en at

a rIght angle and lying 8 .. 01'085 the :road '0,1" tr:oal1 may mean an enem:r' mIne 01" boo,bytrap

2010 to 1.1,00 m,eter5 a.head. -


A 'banana leaf' Df:' ot:herslnl1 lar leaf' 1s fo,lcLed down the center ''I'll th a 't'h1.n a,tick, apP'l'oxima,te ly'the, thickness of a toothp1ck ,woventhro"ush 1nt._ 0 ,pla.ce,s. In aCIdi tion to marking mine's, "this maY' Indiea;te an ambush al"ea,. The.;r'e 1s no pa'ttern ae to location or d1s'' of mine'fil or ambushes from this marke'r.


I -

Short: sticks, 0,1" leng'ths, of bamboo paralle',l ,to ,11 'l"'oi.Ui olrt!'!.!l usually m,ean, the road Cit' t'l"a.ll 1:s "pee Qf mines or booby traps, •


G:row:ing iSll"aSS 1.9 ,sometimes, tl,ed to

,ror,m four grow:ing sil1eave,s 0(" gr'a.fl5. Thoe ti'ed sneavee form a square of about 6 f,e'e't. Tbe m1ne 15 burled or concealed in the c'ent,er of the squar'e.



,m !IIi

These (lj,evice:s bave been u5'ed e'xtef.lsl v'ely ·to,set,b,er., Thle mine or boebytrap 1.s pla.ce,dIl (buried) und,er' two lar'lSje le'a.ve5, '. In - :fI"'Oflit and 'tottle rea:.r'~ at nOI sps'c.1al dls'ta'nce~ ar,e dr1.ven. Tbe m.ark,e:rsh:ave al,901 been u.sed 1ndepe'n<.i.en-tly of each other a.t times.

A for.kled sti,et is. dr1 ven vi@'!'t:1c:,all:y Into the· ,Ep:oound and '9'not·iI1e·r stIck 15 laidl into ·t·he fork wl·th. t.he el@'va:ted end pcd"iIlt:~

ingto the diange·zr are·a,lO' D::Lstanc's ·to

ex~lo31v'e ,d.evioe' l!i!.lnknolwn. This sIgn. ms,;y' also :I1.ndl1oate· ell:em,,. dh·,ectiOllo·f iilovement.

I~ ~

Vari.ous forroat1.tHli5 of :roc.ks and small stones, are used to m.ark boobytra.ppe,a areas. No pattern or distance or loc&tlo~ has been estab11shed.

Thr<ee sticks, one on leach ,side of' a rlOad or tra.!l and one in therolddle J' usually mea.:n the road is no't t,o be us,ed. A mine or boobytra,p is u5\Lally 200 to 40.0 mete'rs from the lIIarkel:". Stones have been IJsed in t he ~;aJl'ie ma.nner.,



The ene/my hss capltal.l:z:ed on our habit. of follDw·il:1g old y,e.hiele· tr'9!cks by placing mine-a in these traek::!5i.. M1ne~ are SOInetll~le'fiI ma:rked with c.:ro,sBed stioks or an arrangemen.t, ot 3,tgllles. The 1(H::at1of.ll gt' "the in rel.a.t1o'n. to these m.a.rkers is unkncrwn. The may be und.e:r t.tle

marker lOr iJ.ptoLiOO lIlet'eT15 fa1ir'ther Oon.


An M1Als:ntl ta.nk:m1ne w'l th apPl"c,x1ma te ly 25 pO'Ltud.s, of TN1' was discovered under thls,marker. The mine had been 'marked stakes at each corne.l'!' a.nd three' st.leks Q"n fiX,1'! o,v,er 'them1ne.




Mines and explosive booby~traps employed b, the enem,. against friendly personnel are 11m1.ted In. 'type a.nd. qu.anti·ty only by ·the a:v·a 1~ab'111 ty - of e xplo,5,1 ve mat'e:r la1a and the 1_ma.:Kina·t1.on or the enemy" Any~ thing 't.ha.t can be made to explode and ca.US'19' 1nJ ll.ry can be' rigged as a.n ant1-· peI"50·n.nel mine. or bo·obyt:rap.

Ailltipers'onnel mine's and explos:1 ve boo:bytraps are' very sUlccessf"ll.ll, emplcy,ed by th<e VC/NVA. Pa.rt o,tthls Bucc,ess 1s because Mal'i.n,es are not familial" with the :physical Q,escI"'i,ptlon of explosive devices no,rmal1v emplo!if"e~b, the VC'/NVA.j,and thUS fail to reco,&nize them prl,or to ,acclden·tal d.etcna;tlon.

Tbe f'o11owing illustI'B.t:lons. :r'epre5el'ft some of th.e 4evl'ces employed by the VC/NVA. in SVN.


S,U1N-SIAIKElD MUD' ,Q,R AP'PIA!Ii)X ~ •• ' 1"1"10"',

Tbe mud-ball mine consis'ts of a handgrenade ,encl9!::ied in sun-baked. m-ud OI" cl.ay. The safffty ,pin (pull ring,') Is remov'ed - andlm:u,rj 19 mOldled arou~~tbe gI"enade. After' the muCii dries i't holds 'the lever

of the e;re'J'· in the s,a,fe position. Tta,e mudball 1s pla,ced on trails or an_ywhere t.l"'QOPS may walk. Stepping on th,e ba.Ll, break.s tbe drl,ed mud apart ,and relea:,se,g th.e le've'I' d.etonatlng the grenade. The

1J • ,s ., M 2' 6 an d ,M:3; 3: hand grenad,e a ba ve be en t.l')e mQ'st commonly u5'ed gl"ena.d,es forth1s purpose al·thQugh o·ther lever-type grenades Ola, be used.


The ti'n can mine La ean.s'tl"uctedl. from sh~et metal or any discarded ruetal container (C-ratlon~ beerJ or sort drink can). The firing dev1c'" ror the explosive 1~ an. 1~pr'ov1sed fuse wi th ze':ro delay a.ction" Po f'Uae may be y=:;ed

by remova.l of the delay element '" The :min,e' f'unct1ons by a tripwire attached to thoe pull ring. PI'e55ure on Ulie tripwire pull,s the' ,pull ring" activatIng th.e mine in th,e same manner as a banagre:n.ade'.


Ttl lsm1n.e" rn:ade of cast 1rof:lJ Ji resembles, a, $'t1(lk; bandlrenadie wi ttl S, V'Ell"'Y s-hol"t ha.ndlle., 'The word ~'MI.Nu 113 glten found into 'the b'Qdy. The handle ,houses ,a pull-r'l'lctlon 19n1 tel' . A ,tug on Ii tl"i,p~ wire a'ttacbe1d to the frio tion 19n1.t,er

w1_1 act1'vate the fuse.

OM I NiESE COMNlJ:NlrST :10.. ,6 DllA,L--:PUllPO:SE MINE

Almost H.h;~'ntleal tOI the CHICONlN·o. ~ Dual-Purpose Mine j this d.evice also, hae a double-acting ruBle • Like ·tne No ... 1I j a. pressure of' 300 pounds on tne p'l"e6tHll"e' spider Qr a pull of 1Q pounds on an attached tripwire w::ll.ll d.,;te the mine.. Sl:lgh·tly 18;l'ger' than ·t.heNo. ~ JI ·this mne ,coirlta1n;EI 5 pounds. 'of' explos! "Ie and naa an oV'E!I:'a.Ui. w,e1shtof 12 pounds... It 1s ma61e' of m.e·t,sl and eoa.bed! with c~e'olsote for we:terpI'Clof'1ng ..



The bounding mine 15 improvised fro.m expended U.S. M2 bounding m ne or M48 tr1pflare cases. A ~oodEn cylinder slightly smaller in diaMeter than t(Je mine case t s hollowed out so triat a standard grenade-

con fit 11151 e. The wooden coy 11ndeI" (wi 11 enclosed g;t'enacie) 13 then fitted into ,he mine case: and th~ grenad,e I ssaf'e y piJ'l is extracte,d. Whe-n the mine is de'tonated~

the cyllnaer and grenade ar,e propelled Llpward. As the wooden cylinder and gl"eona.d Sepal"B,'te JI 'the hal1dle flies, off' the gTenade" ,a.ctive,tins: the fuse.

This mine ,is fabricated of ca.rtridg,e cases or p1e'ces ,of pipe o,r variQus a,1zes. It is loaded wl·th Eli charge of black

powder j a prlmer~, andl a var1ety or f'ragments, r'or missile effect. When th.e 'victim st'eps 'on the ,mine ~ the .1gnlte.~ ,d!e'tonates the bla,gk: po,:wder ,eharge and! 'p:ropels 'the fragments upwar(t.


Foursirop,le' and easily componen.t,s, Ilpt.h.1:s mine 5, a bamboo tube" a naili~ a. :r;d.,ece of wood ~ a.ndan, small armiS ,ammunition OJ" M1'9 round", 'The' piece of' wood 1,1,) used as a 'base ,', The bamboo is plaeed Upl'!,ght en the

w,ooden tlas'~ and a nail is driven ~.p 'thI"(')ugh 'the~ood to pe~,etr'ate'tbe bottom of the bamboo. Ttie cal:"'tl"1dge is 'then wedged into the bamboo sotho t 'the primeI' 1s touching th.e po.1nt of 'Ul.le nat.t, Part1aU_,v bur:1ed a;lorrlig a trail. o:rpath" the p:re:ssu.r'E! of' a mil,Ul'l s foot s'te'pp:ing on the nose IQf' the' cartri.d,g€ ,fm:'ce,sthe primer ont o the nail J' f:1l"'ingtbe cartrIdge,.


'Cemmanl,Y referred ,to as a IICHICOM or'

VC clClymg;re;; I~ tbl,s mitile bas characteristics similar to, t,he U~S. M18 Cla,ymoreMine.

Fused e.l e c't;;ri,eall-r~, 1 t is a oommand- de to .. , nati:ng device desi!;ned 1'01' emplo,yment from ambush. or def'efl.81ve positions ~ lIt has a range of' 150 ,to 200 meters and 13 et:!,'e c tt ve against personnel and thln ... sklnnedv'e'hlcl.'es.



C'hinesE!' Communist caple's. of tbe S'o"i"i,c't, POMZ .. 2 m.ine' aI'e' :now belitl employ-,ed by the VC/N:VA,. WeiEhlng only .It,.~, pounds ~ ,it 1s eas11, carried. and can be emplaced quickl"" Fus.ed!. :fOil" de'tcnat:1on. by tl"'ipw'il"e ('te'.nsioiJ:'l, ol"pr.eS5ure' ," I't eam, a.lslO be rlg~e,d electr.1eally ,fo,'r' command d~to .... na,t.ion.


Th.e i,d,es. of none,xploslve 'lboob,'tl"' 1s as o,ld as man 0, From the s1,mple earth p,i't linedl with sha.l"pened stakes, to hiSh,l:y soph16tlca,ted mech&rd.sms of 't1'1,g~er\ed c01ls ,and l,atcbes ,', the enemy eRq)loys them all. The prlnc1,ph~ ,emplo'ye,d is, s,1mply tOllS'€' 9.1'l)"thinl 'tha.,tw:Lll ca.tch t,hs'vlet,il1l by' s'UI"prl~u!' .,


1:'HfH:!P Of' nit 'DRI!ll~ 1 .... 'fE

.r _. '"

~~!!I, ~SPII!(E WU,mEfli. ""''' ;

The ba.rbed-spik·e plate :1s ·the ba's1c ,element 'of all ,en,emy nOJ1Enc:p~os1.'IIe b()olby ...

t rape .,. The p la t;.·e .1' a .r la.t pIe' c. e 0 t woo d

or me·tal" 1s use,d as a bas~ to fashm

any number of' blrbed spj.k:es. The spikes:. l"ang1nl: 1n length from sev,eral tnenes to se,veral feet jJ are '.as tened securely to t.helJa:se. When a man steps or tal15 on the spiked plate~ or Is struck by one~ the spike,s will p'em~trate, prodllllc1ng- a s.er1ouswound •


Th IS device- 1s: a a,imp le woothm. box

mad,e 00 r boards J oil'led together 11'11 th four corner posts. The box has a lightweIght tal) but the bottom is removed. Earbed spikes 8.f:!e placed in the ground. at the bottom ,point1ng apwClf'd. This trap 1,5 us u.s.lly

set. up on dirt roads and trails to take adv~nt8ge of favorable camouTlage.



Made of hamboo which ha.s been sharpened, the stakes are stuek in the gro1l1nd and, cover'ed with gl'; ~lhen a weapon 1s f1r,ed 0,[' a. grenade thrown, 'troop:s seek cover and are impale .,



A trap pit is a large trap box w1'th ill bamboo, top. Stakes are- made of sharpened bamboo O.I!" barbed spikes and u5@d to line the box, When a ma.n steps em t.he trap he will fall :Into the pit. Tbe top tUl"ns 'On an axle ~ there fore, the tra'p does no-t need tQ be reset to ",ark again. Thep1t 19 o~n~en prepared as a aef,ensive obstacle and then ma e safe by locking it in place with a cT'Q'ssbeam (so it can b"e' crossed! safel:y by t.he enemy) WiLt:!...l the desired t.ime of use",



"_1)1. ~\\}~,t\t'l '


A small .footbridge 115 partIally cut in. the middle" The' cut is t:hen camou.flaged with coverings of mud" etc. Ba.rbed spikes or sharpened bamboo sta.kes are emplaced under the cut ~ using, the water.J mud or tailage unger' the br1dle as ca.mouflage. The weigh of a. man on the br1dge w111 caus,e it 'to collapse II tumbling the v1ctim onto the spikes. Like, the sp ke trap pi t I bridges can, be prepared in th1s manner,

t ben. - b r-ae ed for :norma 1 us e • A t the approach c,f free world forc'e:1'l the braces are 'removed.




Thi strap util.1:ii!:es a. bamboo ·tube ('usua.~ly about 3 long) as a. Launcner-, A s bHH alr'f"ortl 1 s pI ac,ed 1n the tub e "

Using a bloek or wood as tbe bolt~ a stpip or~tI'olng rubber r'or power> and a. a:a'tcb to lock: the rubber 5 tl"1p "the device is .fir,ed w.lth, a trlpw.1re. When the victim tr1ns the w1re~ the lat~b disengages) allowing ther'ubber stri.pto lali.lillch the iEU",l"ClW.



A strip or springy bamboo from 3 to 10 .feet in length is Hsed to make a !bamboo whip., A. bal'bed ~8plk:e plate is to the' tip of the bamboo ,( or several ot the spikes c1r1 van thrQugh the ba.mDo'o 1 ,', and 'ttle whip 15 dra:wn back and. secured. A tl"lpwtre!' is then lat,chedto the whip and' the wire is strung across the 'traIL When a man trlps the wlre" the bamboo. is reI,eased., and wh1ps aroundJ striking the victim with the spikes.



Mlnes employ,ed by the en,emy agail:'l,st wne,elecl and tracked veh1c lies vary from conventional anti tank mines of fOlrel,gin manuf'a,etuI'e tOI r1.gged duds and locally pr'odueedi e xpl,osl ve devlc es., All 'the industriall,), produced mines are of' the type f'used :for de'tona.tion a.t .fl"om 150 to lIOO pounds ofpressU're., They ar,e buried

slightly beneath th.e sur-race o,fthe ground., The 'enem~ generally employs these' mines as, Idesigned but has 'varIed fu.sing and posl ... , bioning 50 that tn1ere 1:5 DO d"ef:1nltc' patts'rn""

Designed to a.void detection bya,m1.i1'e detector~ this mine 1s construct~d of black

or' brown tar-1mpregnat,e(l! eardboard It 18

ga.u,geld, 1"'01" ac:tlvat1of!J :tiy a force ol,f 350

pounds Qr pressure '. Furtber I' 1 t can be wa.terproofed by use of wood and plastic sbeet1ng~ without losing Its nQndetectlon cha.l"'ac'ter1sti.c. It contains 11 pounds of explosive a.nd bas a.n overall weight o.f l5.,!J pounds ,



Intended fol' ,employment aga.ln51 t b::J ct.h vehicle,s and personnel~, &hls mine in.corporates a diouble..,act1ng fusethatw1.l1 deton.ate the mine under e1ther of two circumstances: The f1r'st ~ when a load of JOO' pounda o.r pressure 1s applied to th.e p':!:",essure sp1d,er;; the' second, whe'T! a pull. of 10 pounds is ex,erted Qn a. tripwire fastened to the ,fuse 'I s striker-roe a1nel" pin. Constructed or creosoted metal, 1t carries lj pounds of e,x,p los 1 ve and has an overa.ll \'I'eight of' abeut 10 pounds.



; II I

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J !, ,
- - - , , t
I r----:;- 4111 I
.. , ,:
i oj , I'
1 WJ Thi.s mine is constructed or explosive encased in a cylindricall, sha~ed concrete s,hell with a flat side fOr. stable emplacement '. Po 2-1nch ... pipe CHl one end of the mln~ se-rves as a carrying handle a.nd detonator hou.s°ng. The two swivels on top of the mim~! are used to tie 1 t 'to' an obj'ect. employed as a comma.nd '" dietonat1ng mlne~ it Is equipped with an electrical tiring device.



Produced 1n NOl:'th Vietnam; this egg~ shapeo mine is illaide of eaae 11'on witb serrations on its outer surface. De"'igned fo,!'" command detonation, the mine Is fused w1'th. an electrical detona.'tor and ~'H~:1gb5

12 pounds ,



Manufa.ctured locally in VC mine :rac~ tor1e5 J th,is mine conta:it:ls an iron-pipe die tona t ot' e ne as e dl 1 n C o' e ,', Anot her' cOmrt'land-detonatln,g mine~, it is fused. elect~lcall, and ~elgbs 13 poundB.



:f:rodl.lll.l::'ed loe.a.ll'y in VC !]tine thIs min'e is a prototype of numer'Ol1S either VC-ma:nuf'·aatured explosiv,e d.ev1ces. Con ... st'ruct'edl of' sheet metal.:! with weld.ed sesl1LS j it . senerall.ywelghs about 15 pounds" of which. 13 pou nds are explosl 'liE! ,', Command d.etonated-;) It is fused. ele(rtrlcally and employ,s tllO detonB.tOI"'S j one in each end at' the' m.1ne. Tbe same pl"lnelple of com;;,·tr-uc ... tlon La app11'ed to artillery sh,ell eas ings, lexpended LAA'W laun,chers ,', and iliOS't other d.ev1ces usinl me'tal containers.,



111 "!CC'OB,AlHbIM Be, 400' rpUIMI

The VC box mine 11';1 const.ructed Cif' wood utl11z1,ng disc,81'died ammlu11tl.Qii 'box,ss or any scrap mat,erlal. Mine de·tector,s will not

Loea e these devices. Th,ey can be waterproofed with plastlcshe'etlng" Box r.n1nes

are pl"'oduced in various sf zes bu t the moos t cammon ~onta.l:ns anou t 1I o pounds 01' exp 10s1 ve _, The mine can. be fused fer eomman:'ld d'~f~o'llat1on 0'1" ,5i'1=:lf~d<e onatlo:n by th€ use of various devices" The' explosl ve char,ge La usually made up 01' :so tanda.rd. Sovie·t or Ch1n.E!'se' Communist I.-pound de'mol! tlQn blocks.



A length of bamboOI l.S! elIl.:plac·ed at an ansl,@' ot liS degrees al,ong the shoulder of a r.o,ad. A B-40rocket 1s then placed in the bamboot'Ube and fired electrIcally by comman.d. de\;ona:t1on a8 'the 'tank or vehle;le er-oases the line (J,( fire.


{::Orlstru,cted (If bl1Jed steelj s(lmet~mes paintedi olive drab or wtL:Ue J! the TM-~,l earl'ies an explosive cha.rge of a pou.nd.s and! ha.s.a total 'Weight of 12 pouiIlds.A rQree of 350 pounds of p:r'essure IOn the lid will activate the ~lrln~ device. With very little a.dd1 tiona.l waterproofing it ca.nremaln operational indefinitely.


~'a.nufractl;.lr\ed 1n Communis t Ch1nat, thl;! mine 1s s1m11ar to and oft·en m1.sta.ken f,or a U.S,. pre ... World ar II mine. ~ade of' metalj 1 t is pa.inted ollv'e drab wi tb the yell~w marklng::i "MINE MIAI-TN'IIfI. rt is activated b;y 200 pounds or pr'essure on the pre'saure plate. Thi 1;; mine contains

,~ pounds or explosive and wclgh:s 11. 5 pounds.



The degree or euceese that 'th.e employ~ ment Qfbelicopte:rs has had Ion l'estr.i~t;ing and, co:nta,:1,n1ng VtC/NiVA acM~ vi ties is evl~ denced hI t,be ,efH~':mV ~s ef'f'or'ts "t,o de'st:roy (U~ neutr,al:lz,ethe,!'iII;!' machines. ,ll'!! a.dd,lt1cn 'to· in t'en se ,ground fi l"e IItlle le'ne1rn;w h:aa dl€'\iI"lsed nwm.e'I'OU5 :I1.e'l.icopter lemelIlIlg zone IQes tl"uct1on sy.ste'm3. Such destruction sys,tems I'a.nge f1"omtheprlPdtl ve planting of long poll'11te'Q :S"t;a.k:e5to :1 lI'Iag1n!iL't 1 'II'€: explos lVE! devi¢e:s. BecauG e 0 r 1'ts de.:; 1,B:nl, the heH.,co];yter is ,extr>emelF vulner-able ,to thesoe devices~, l,la];"t1c'Ullar, ttu,e rotors and. a. i f' frame •


Greni:d.e5~, ,art111Iery/morta:l'" l'(liunds,~ or a.ny oth,er type of' expl,odln,g .ol:'.din.ancle. are mounted in 'trees: or' on the' oftbe landii'll: sone '. The explosive ldievl(l'es 31"'€' rigged :rot' tl"1p,w1r'e c:i@tcmat.lo:l'l and the'


wire Is strung to lo,osiely emplaced poles. The rotorwash 'of 1,a:rHiln.g hel1,copters r..:l11 blow tt;I<~' PQlee f~om their loosepo·s1tlorli,J tr1.ppingthe device.

A. 13-year'-old 'V1ebJiame,se boy recen·tly claimed that the VC had :!,',orc.ed him to reconnoiter helIcopter landing z·ones. The boy-was instructed by the VO tOI place handgrenades 1nthe zones with strings w1"apped sroundthe lle'vers~, p:leQes c.r paper att·a.c::bed t,o the fTee ends of the :~!'trlngs and ther1r'ig~ I( pull rings) pulled. Rot,i:)r,w,ash from la:n,d)1n,g h.el1eop"ter,5 would 'then blow the pa:pe,!" J! unwrap tbe string::l1 and, release the sarety lever .





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