While Hanoi has suffered several weeks of intensive bombing by United States aircraft, Saigon has been virtually untouched by the war in Vietnam except for a rocket attack on an ammunition dump in mid-December.
GV Saigon street with cars & people (3 shots)
SV PAN Troops & people (2 shots)
SV Police in jeeps patrol the city (4 shots)
SV PAN Ammunition barge in river
GV & SV Naval patrol boats (2 shots)
SV Troops search barge (4 shots)
SV Patrol boat PAN TO depth charge exploding in water
GV & SV Workers harvesting rice crop (5 shots)
SV Worker thrashing rice
SV Bags of rice loaded on truck (2 shots)
Initials SGM/1836 SGM/1918
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Background: While Hanoi has suffered several weeks of intensive bombing by United States aircraft, Saigon has been virtually untouched by the war in Vietnam except for a rocket attack on an ammunition dump in mid-December.
North Vietnam has agreed to a full resumption of the Paris Peace Talks next week (8 January). The renewed talks will see Hanoi returning much battered by the U.S. bombing attacks, while Saigon will be in much the same position as before.
Increased patrols by Saigon Police and naval craft guard against possible attacks on the city. And the South Vietnamese Army has gained sufficient control of outlying areas to permit the peaceful harvesting of the rice crop.
The increased security in and around Saigon may have helped to strengthen President Thieu's position politically.
SYNOPSIS: While the past few weeks have seen intensive bombing of Hanoi in North Vietnam, Saigon has remained almost untouched by the ravages of war.
South Vietnamese troops are in evidence in Saigon, but there is none of the heavy military equipment usually associated with the capital of a war-torn country...Police patrols within the city have been intensified and the United States has supplied new jeeps to be sued in guarding against sabotage -- but there hasn't been any. The calm in Saigon is a dramatic contrast to destruction in Hanoi caused by the U.S. bombing.
Arms and munitions continue to pour into South Vietnam. Barges loaded with ammunition lie in Saigon's river, guarded by United States-trained units of the South Vietnamese Navy. Searching the vessels on the river is a common occurrence and protects against an attack from this direction.
The boats patrol the river day and night and are equipped with depth charges.
The security in Saigon also extends into the areas around the capital. This year's rice crop is currently being harvested. Control of the rice-producing areas of South Vietnam is a critical factor in maintaining control of the country. When the full Paris Peace Talks resume next week, South Vietnam may be in a stronger position than when the talks ended, because Saigon has not suffered the destruction the U.S. bombing has caused in the North Vietnamese capital.