The U.S. Navy turns 64 river patrol gunboats valued at $18.2 million over to the South Vietnamese Navy in what is described as the largest single transfer of military equipment in the war thus far. The transfer raised the total number of boats in the South Vietnamese Navy to more than 600. This was part of the “Vietnamization” program, which President Richard Nixon initiated to increase the fighting capability of the Republic of Vietnam Armed Forces (to include the Army, Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps) so that they could assume more responsibility for the war. Vietnamization included the provision of new equipment and weapons and an intensified advisory effort.
Posted in Vietnam War.