A modern Vietnam

Discuss air warfare, doctrine, air forces, historic campaigns, etc.
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Active Member

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Unread post06 Jul 2018, 21:16

I've been watching a documentary series on the Vietnam war and it has raised the question for me of how modern technology would effect a similar conflict. I understand that there were many things that decided the outcome in Vietnam and most were not technology or even military related at all. However, what difference would things like persistent surveillance and modern sensors have had on the military side of a similar conflict.


Elite 1K

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Unread post06 Jul 2018, 21:40

That is a very good question. I think that our current array of PGMs came about as a direct result of Vietnam.

Persistent surveillance and multispectral sensors would make interdiction of the Ho Chi Minh trail far easier, with downstream effects on frontline communist troops. Really, modern sensors and PGMs would dramatically improve the efficiency of US airpower.

Hopefully Gums will chime in with his experience.
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Elite 1K

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Unread post07 Jul 2018, 05:51

You improve the body count without altering the outcome. Wars of ideology aren't won with body counts.


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Unread post07 Jul 2018, 14:50

Just look at 1991 Gulf war for the big changes in technology that allowed far better situational awareness in A-A alongside better radar and missiles. Guided bombs and missiles improved things where they were used although the first guided weapons came about the end of Vietnam.

Taking out ground targets sounded a nightmare in Vietnam - probably an extreme example was Dragons Jaw (Thanh Hoa) bridge which took 871 sorties over 7 years (11 Jets lost) and eventually was taken out by F-4s with LGBs in 1972. Then needed further A-7 attacks a few months later with Walleye dropping the thing.

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