Vietnam Marines 1965-73 (Elite)

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The models I had been given were fine but needed a little repainting so that they matched my own painting style and blended in with the VNMC uniforms. The VNMC was officially formed in Initially it comprised a single infantry battalion but evolved and expanded over the next 21 years to a divisional sized formation of 3 brigades with 9 infantry battalions and 3 artillery battalions and a range of supporting arms and services.

In a fourth brigade was authorised, with a further 3 infantry battalions and an artillery company.


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  8. Plans were also in hand to form a 2nd Marine Division but this was never implemented due to the collapse of the Saigon regime and the communist victory in As an elite formation, and with an enviable combat record, the VNMC was frequently in the news, and featured prominently in the South Vietnamese media, particularly the press and TV. The high profile afforded the VNMC meant that it was, to a certain extent, able to select the pick of the conscripts in order to maintain its standards. In addition, the high media profile afforded to the Corps meant that many Vietnamese men and a significant percentage of the conscripts volunteered, simply to be part of an elite, rather than an ordinary ARVN unit.

    Vietnam Marines 1965-73 (Elite)

    This produced solders with a higher than average level of motivation and determination, all of which were fostered by the VNMC ethos, the privilege of belonging to an elite unit, its battlefield successes, and the distinctive "sea wave" camouflage uniform. One battalion frequently tried to select recruits over 5 feet 5 inches tall above average height for Vietnamese males so that they would look physically more imposing!

    Recruits were trained according to the 16 week basic training syllabus set by the AFRVN National Training School but with the addition of a further 4 weeks amphibious and helicopter drills training. Of course, being Marines and an elite force, the basic training was considered harder than the ARVN equivalent with the possible exception of the ARVN Airborne units and much time and effort was spent in indoctrinating new recruits into the Marine Corps ethos.

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    Recruitment was remarkably consistent throughout the war, for the reasons given above. This system allowed the corps to replace losses relatively quickly when compared to other formations. One of the VNMC methods of maintaining high morale was in the use of unit nicknames to foster unit pride, esprit de corps and a feeling of belonging amongst the soldiers.

    Each infantry and artillery battalion had its own nickname, which was frequently used as a battle cry by the troops. View cookies policy. Zoom Zoom.

    Melson Author , Paul Hannon Illustrator. Availability Usually despatched within 2 weeks.

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