Accession Number:

ADA586312

Title:

Project CHECO Southeast Asia Report. USAF Control of Airstrikes in Support of Indigenous Lao Ground Forces

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

PACIFIC AIR FORCES HICKAM AFB HI CHECO DIV

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1972-07-19

Pagination or Media Count:

175.0

Abstract:

The Butterfly and Raven Forward Air Controller programs represented a unique attempt to provide effective air strike control for USAF jet fighters under restrictive political conditions. International agreements the Geneva Accords of 1962 had forbidden the introduction of any foreign military forces or assistance into Laos. North Vietnam disregarded this restriction and continued to provide weapons, training, and eventually manpower to support native Lao communists. To counter this North Vietnamese effort the U.S. was obliged to organize various clandestine military air projects to maintain a pro-western or neutralist Lao government in face of the communist challenge. Since the overt introduction of U.S. ground forces was ruled out by the Geneva Accords and by the increasing U.S. involvement elsewhere in Southeast Asia, this support took the form of material and training assistance and air power. The effective use of airpower, however, required trained strike control personnel to operate in the field with non-communist Lao ground forces. To provide this service, USAF strike control personnel were introduced clandestinely into Laos starting in mid-1964. This effort was to evolve eventually into the Raven Forward Air Control program.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE