***************************
IT WILL TAKE SOME TIME
TO READ THIS OFFER
IT TOOK  3 YEARS & 176 HOURS
TO PUT IT ALL TOGETHER

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I WANTED TO SAY BEFORE YOU INVEST IN SUCH A COLLECTION AS THIS FRENCH 1ST VIETNAM WAR INDOCHINA 1945-1954 GROUPING, YOU SHOULD INVEST 15.00 U.S. DOLLARS IN THE BOOK "STREET WITHOUT JOY, The French Debacle In Indochina by Bernard B. Fall

Originally published in 1961, before the United States escalated its involvement in South Vietnam, Street without Joy offers a spell bining  birds eye view of the French 1st Vietnam war [1945-1955]. An amazing history of the French and French Foreign Legion in the jungles of "Nam". From the ambushes to the micro detals of engagements as well as policy, this book will keep you awake! It also offered a clear warning about what American forces would face in the jungles of Southeast Asia: a costly and protracted revolutionary war fought without fronts against an extremely   mobile and determined enemy. In harrowing detail, Fall describes the brutality and frustrations of the Indochina War, the savage eight-year conflict-ending in 1954 after the fall of Dien Bien Phu-in which French forces suffered a staggering defeat at the hands of Communist-led Vietnamese nationalists. With its frontline perspective, vivid reporting, and careful analysis, Street without Joy was required reading for anyne who loves history as well as for policymakers and soldiers in the field.

 

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Bernard eating in the feild with US troops in Vietnam

Bernard B. Fall (November 19, 1926 ₦ƒ¢â€š¬…€œ February 21, 1967) was a prominent war correspondent, historian, political scientist, and expert on Indochina during. Born in Austria, he moved with his family to France and at 16 would fight with the French Resistance and later the Free French Army during World War II. In 1950 he first came to the United States for graduate studies at Syracuse University and Johns Hopkins University. He taught at Howard University for most of his career and made regular trips to Southeast Asia. He predicted the failures of France and the United States in the wars in Vietnam.

Though Fall supported the American military presence in South Vietnam, believing it could stop the country from falling to Communism, he criticized Ngo Dinh DiemAmerican-backed regime and the tactics used by the United States military in Vietnam. As the conflict between the American forces and the Communists in Vietnam escalated throughout the 1960s, Fall became pessimistic about the U.S.'s chances of success. He predicted that if it did not learn from France mistakes, it too would fail in Vietnam. Fall wrote extensive articles detailing the situation in Vietnam, and lectured about his ideas on the Vietnam War. Fall's research was considered invaluable to many U.S. diplomats and military officials, but his negative opinions were often not taken seriously.

By 1964, Fall concluded that the U.S. forces in Vietnam were losing. Fallƒ’dire predictions caught the attention of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which began to monitor his activities.Yet many noted Fall's accuracy and comprehension in his writing about the Vietnam War.

In Colin Powell's 1995 autobiography, My American Journey, he wrote:

"I recently reread Bernard Fall's book on Vietnam, Street Without Joy. Fall makes painfully clear that we had almost no understanding of what we had gotten ourselves into. I cannot help thinking that if President Kennedy or President Johnson had spent a quiet weekend at Camp David reading that perceptive book, they would have returned to the White House Monday morning and immediately started to figure out a way to extricate ourselves from the quicksand of Vietnam."


On 21 February 1967, while accompanying a company of the 1st Battalion 9th Marines on Operation Chinook II in the Thua Thien Province ["Street Without Joy"], Fall stepped on a Bouncing Betty land mine and was killed, along with Gunnery Sergeant Byron G. Highland, a U.S. Marine Corps combat photographer. He was dictating notes into a tape recorder, which captured his last words: "We've reached one of our phase lines after the fire fight and it smells bad-meaning it's a little bit suspicious... Could be an ambUSH". Fall left behind his wife and three daughters.

IRREGARDLESS OF YOUR INVESTING OR NOT IN STREET WITHOUT JOY,  I HAVE DECIDED TO INCLUDE MY PERSONAL COPY OF "A STREET WITHOUT JOY" WITH THIS FRENCH INDOCHINA MILITARY WATCH BOX AND FRAMED INDOCHINA MAP. IT IS A  MUST!

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READY TO WEAR
RESTORED & OVERHAULED

VINTAGE
TRI-COLOR
FRENCH LANCET
PILOT JUMP WATCH
WITH
1945-1955
15 JEWEL
SHOCK PROTECTED
SWEEP SECONDS HACK
MOVEMENT

AND


RESTORED & OVERHAULED
VINTAGE

1944-1954
FRENCH
LANCET
MILITARY POCKET WATCH

IN

LEATHER CASE

41.5 mm x 40.5 mm
with outer leather case

28.6 mm

without leather

WITH
15 JEWEL SWISS BAR SUB SECOND
MANUAL WIND MILITARY MOVEMENT


STORED
IN A

RARE
&
AWESOME
FRENCH INDOCHINA
DIEN BIEN PHU
MILITARY WATCH BOX

CONTAINING

A COLLECTION OF
FOREIGN LEGION
FRENCH PARATROOPER
&
1945 - 1954
FRENCH
INDOCHINA
MILITARY MEMORABILIA

AND

FRAMED 1902 COLOR MAP
OF FRENCH INDOCHINA

AND
LATE 19TH EARLY 20 CENTURY
FRENCH EMBLEMS AD MORE

WITH

ONLINE PROFESSIONAL APPRAISAL
TO INSURE YOUR INVESTMENT


[ONE APPRAISAL WITH A) MWB BOX & B) WATCH PRICING]

WITH

THE COMPLETE HISTORY
AS TOLD WITHIN THIS OFFER

AND

A 1 YEAR LIMITED WATCH WARRANTY

USA 2 DAY INSURED AIR DELIVERY 65.00

INTERNATIONAL SUPER FAST FEDEX 140.00


*******************************************

FREE 800 438 6894 TOLL FREE SUPPORT
INTERNATIONAL +17708311257

M-SAT 11AM - 7 PM EST

VISIT MILITARY WATCH BOX ON EBAY FOR
BANDS JEWELRY TRDE IN WATCHES

******************************************

THE FRENCH
AFTER THEIR DEFEAT
IN WWII

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Free French Cross of Lorraine Flag of France Kingdom of France
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Free French Adrian Helmet Free French Naval 1939-1940 French Republic

FREE FRENCH WWII

France and the United Kingdom were the first to declare war after Germany invaded Poland in 1939. In a lightening, successful campaign in the Low Countries and, in the Battle of France, Germany inflicted defeat on the Allied forces.

France surrendered in June of 1940 and formed a collaborating government -- headed by  PAtain -- titled "The French State" and known as the Vichy government.

Right after the French Government surrender, PAtain went on French National Radio to appeal to units still battling the Germans to obey him and "cease the fight".

Within days of PAtain's speech, Charles de Gaulle, a French officer who would became a Brigadier General in WWII and then French President after the war, gave what would become a historical speech to the French people on BBC Radio. De Gaulle focused on bolstering French pride by informing his fellow citizens that "France has lost a battle, but France has not lost the war". And then, from England, he formed both the Free France Government (La France Libre) and the Free French Forces and began to recruit French Citizens and Soldiers to fight, to start the underground in France and to bolster support of French Colonies .

But it was Capitaine de corvette Thierry d'Argenlieu who suggested the adoption of the Cross of Lorraine as a symbol of the Free French, both to recall the perseverance of Joan of Arc, whose symbol it had been, and as an answer to the Nazi swastika.

 

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CEFEO

Georges Thierry d'Argenlieu was a priest, diplomat   French Navy officer and, eventually, an  admiral in charge of French Colonial Administration in Indochina. An interesting side note was that though d'Argenlieu had a heroic resume and was an important co-founder and leader in the Free French Goverment & Forces, after the defeat of Japan the French decided to regain Indochina,Thierry d'Argenlieu was promoted to Vice Admiral and sent in 1946 to Indochina with the French far East Expeditionary Corps [CEFEO] to restore French Colonial Administration. Once there, he was promoted to Admiral, but by February 1947, he was recalled and replaced by Emile Bollaert due to "conroversy". 

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This "controversy" is an important story herein as concerns this collection. 

In June of 1946, on his own, D'Argenlieu issued a proclamation establishing of a Republic of Cochin-China. At this time, Communist Viet Minh leader Ho Chi Minh and Paris were getting ready for the Fontainebleau Conference in which both sides were to discuss the future of Indochina. This caused the cancellation of the conference and a loss of face to Ho Chi Minh.

D'Argenlieu not only released this proclamation, traveled to Paris to convince Premier Georges Bidault of the need to "teach the Vietnamese Nationalists a lesson."  D'Argenlieu then cabled his deputy in Saigon, General Jean-Etienne Valluy, who in turn ordered the French commissioner in Tonkin [north Vietnam] General Morlire, " to use force in the north". The result was that the French cruiser Suffren was ordered to shell Haiphong on November 23 1946 which led directly to the outbreak of the Indochina War on December 19, 1946.

*********************************

Back to the Free French.  In his general order in July 1940, Vice Admiral mile Muselier, chief of the naval and air forces of the Free French, created the bow flag displaying the French colors with a red cross of Lorraine, and a cockade, which also featured the cross of Lorraine

The Free French forces included soldiers rescued from Dunkirk as well as units of the Foreign Legion. *Free French Generals recruited additional Free French forces from the French Colonial Empire. They chose French Nationals & Natives from tropical African colonies. French Algeria and Moroco supplied men from their native populations. Senegal in French West Africa provided conscripts. Even Tahitians were recruited and served with distinction.

In fact, the battles fought during WWII in Italy included *120,000 French Colonial Forces that made history and were, in many cases, the major difference in the defeat of the Germans in Italy. 1/4 of the forces died or were injured, 2000 went missing in action.  . 

[*Men who would eventually fight & die in the jungles &
communist prison camps of Indochina]

With Allied success in the French Colonial strong-hold of North Africa, the Free French troop strength grew. De Gaulle rallied of the Army of Africa and pursued the fight against the Axis in multiple campaigns until the Free French Forces would have the opportunity to participate in the invasion of Italy and assist in the occupation of France and Germany.

On 23 October 1944, the United States, Britain and the Soviet Union officially recognized De Gaulle's Free French as the provisional government of France; which would become the Fourth Republic in 1946.

The French, both free and *collaborating, had 1,250,000 troops in 10 divisions when the war ended in May of 1945. During the course of the war, French military losses totaled 212,000 dead, of which 92,000 were killed through the end of the EUROPEAN campaign of 1940, 58,000 from 1940 to 1945 in other campaigns, 24,000 lost while serving in the French resistance, and a further *38,000 lost while serving with the German Army.

When WWII ended, the French created an expeditionary corps to "liberate" French Indochina from the Japanese.

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NOTE THE NEW FRENCH ARILLERY
INSIGNIA AND BADGES RIGHT IN RED

*************************

THE WATCH

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WE RESTORED 39 LANCETS --INCLUDING 4 OF THE RAREST PLANE SIGNED PILOTS/JUMP LANCET WATCHES W/SUB-SECONDS -- AND VARIOUS LANCET TRENCH, CONVERSION AND POCKET (3) WATCHES IN THE LAST 3 YEARS.

SOME WERE ACQUIRED FROM VIETNAM, A FEW FROM ALGERIA, ITALY, GREECE, FRANCE & TURKEY. 

THE AVERAGE PLANE SIGNED JUMP WATCH WITH SUB-SECONDS WENT FOR $1000.00 RESTORED WITH WARRANTY AND APPRAISAL.
.

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ROCK'S SWEEPING LANCET

IT TAKES MONTHS, SOMETIMES YEARS, TO FIND AND RESTORE THE ABOVE STYLE FRENCH (SWISS MADE) 1940/1950'S MILITARY LANCET WRIST WATCH. BUT IT IS ALWAYS THE CONDITION FOUND THAT MEANS THE MOST.

THE KEY ITEM IN THIS DIEN BIEN PHU MILITARY WATCH BOX IS A 1951 "PLANE SIGNED" SWEEP SECONDS LANCET PILOTS JUMP WATCH THAT WAS A PURCHASE FROM ALGERIA. IT HAS A RARE (SECOND FOUND) VERSION (BASE WAS A 1945 SUB-SECONDS) ELECTION 645 WITH HACKED SWEEP SECOND HAND.

WHEN I FIRST SAW THIS BEAUTY I REALIZED THAT THE  DIAL WAS EXCELLENT FOR RESTORATION, AND, THOUGH MOST COLOR WAS ABSENT OR FADED AND THE RADIUM NUMERALS WERE DEPLETED -- SHOWING FAINT ORANGE COLOR -- THE BRIGHT RED PAINT ON THE SWEEP HAND & THE BLACK STEEL HAND CONDITION, POINTED TO A WELL CARED FOR LANCET.

BUT I HAD A PATRON INVEST IN THE SUB-SECONDS LANCET PILOT JUMP WATCH FROM THIS FRENCH MILITARY WATCH BOX AND THOUGHT, WELL, I WOULD "RE-DO" THE BOX WITH A FEW MAJOR ADDITIONS AND INCLUDE THIS WONDERFUL LANCET.

I REMOVED THE BAYONET DUE TO INTERNATIONAL RESTRICTIONS & THE BINOCULARS DUE TO THE NEW BOX SIZE AND AM ADDING MORE ITEMS DIRECTLY RELATED TO THE BATTLE OF DIEN BIEN PHU. I AM PASSIONATE ABOUT FRENCH INDOCHINA WAR HISTORY AND THE INDIVIDUAL BRAVERY AND SACRIFICE OF THE SOLDIERS THROUGH OUT THE CONFLICT FROM 1946 THROUGH 1954, SO I PLAN TO ADD SOME MORE AWESOME ITEMS. SO DO NOT BREEZE THROUGH THIS OFFER, READ IT!! 

********************************************

LANCET
French

Pilots Jump Watch

THE FIRST OF 6 THAT
HAS SWEEPS SECONDS

YOU RECEIVE BOTH
THE NYLON BALLISTIC
AND
LEATHER CUFF STYLE


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THE DIAL HAS BEEN RESTORED.
IT HAS THE ORIGINAL FRENCH COLORS
WITH
RE-ILLUMINATED RADIUM DIAL
AND
RE-ILLUMINATED
ORIGINAL STEEL HANDS
AND
RE-PAINTED
CENTER
*BUTTON STYLE
RED SWEEP SECONDS

(* NO TAIL) 

RE-ILLUMINATED
WITH

AF-LUMINOVA
HIGH-PERFORMANCE
PHOSPHORESCENT PIGMENT

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WE CHOSE TO KEEP
THIS LANCET
AS ORIGINAL AS POSSIBLE
THOUGH WE RESTORED THE DIAL
(LOOK AT THE FADED VERSION THEN THE RESTORED)

NOTE: 3 OF THESE LANCET WATCHES IN THE SAME
IS SIZE AND STYLE SOLD FOR 1000.00 EACH

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IF YOU DESIRE A DIFFERENT STRAP IN TYPE, STYLE AND/OR COLOR
PLEASE CONTACT GSW BEFORE YOU INVEST. ROCK HAS OVER 1000 VINTAGE
STRAPS AND BANDS OF ALL TYPES AS WELL AS OUR LARGE INVENTORY
OF NEW STRAPS IN JUST ABOUT EVERY SKIN AND HYDE

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THE CASE WAS KEPT ORIGINAL

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MAIN CENTER CASE
WITH
WIRE & LUGS
IS STEEL
TOP CRYSTAL BEZEL IS BRASS WITH CHROME
CASE BACK IS STEEL

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WE CHOSE AN 18MM G-18
NATO STYLE BALLISTIC  NYLON
IN OLIVE COLOR FOR THE STEEL WIRE LUGS

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BALLISTIC NYLON IS TWICE THE THICKNESS
OF 90% OF ALL NATO STRAPS OFFERED ONLINE

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THIS "STRAIGHT THROUGH" STYLE
MILITARY STRAP
IS CLOSER TO WHAT WAS
ORIGINALLY UTILIZED
IT HAS THREE HD KEEPERS

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IT WILL FIT UP TO SIZE NINE

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THE LANCET IS AWESOME
I HAVE WORN THIS BEAUTY A FEW TIMES
WHAT A RESPONSE!

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THE MAIN STEEL CASE IS POLISHED JUST ENOUGH
TO CLEAN IT UP AND OFFER A LOW LUSTER FINISH
THE BEZEL WAS HAND BUFFED WITH A CLOTH
WE COULD RE-PLATE

BUT THEN
THE WATCH WOULD LOOSE
THE LOOK & VALUE

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HERE IS THE STANDARD LANCET CASE STYLE
ALL FOUR WERE LIKE THIS

WIDE RING PROVIDES STABILITY FOR LARGE DIAL

WITH A LARGE DIAL
LARGE DIAL TABLE
10.5 MOVEMENT CENTER

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YOU CAN SEE WE BUFFED THE CENTER CASE

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A SHOT OF OTHER SIDE

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A SHOT OF STEEL CASE BACK

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HERE SHE IS WITH REFINISHED DIAL

BLUE WHITE RED

WITH
SILVER METALLIC RINGS

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I WAS TEMPTED TO STRIP THE BEZEL & CROWN & RE-PLATE

BUT A LANCET LIKE THIS IS TOO RARE
ONLY 4 OF THE SUB REGISTER STYLE HAVE SURFACED
ONLY 2 OF THE HACKED SWEEP SECONDS HAS BEEN FOUND
AND

ONLY 2 SMALLER 30MM VERSIONS HAVE BEEN FOUND

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"INDO"
"CHINE"

"FREE FRENCH
CROSS OF LORRAINE"

"1953"

 

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THE LANCET WAS MADE UTILIZING CASES AND PARTS FROM VARIOUS WATCH COMPANIES. TRENCH VERSIONS HAD 10 MOVEMENT AND CASE BRANDS. THE FIRST STANDARD MODERN (THE BLACK DIALED VERSION AT TOP WITH LUGS) LANCET WATCH HAD AS MOVEMENTS. THERE WERE FOUR WITH ELECTION MOVEMENTS. THE BASE 465 FOUND IN JUMP WATCHES WITH SUB-SECONDS IS AN ELECTION VERSION MADE IN 1945 WITH 15 JEWELS AND A UNIQUE CAP JEWEL SPRING WHICH OPERATED AS A SHOCK SYSTEM. THIS VERSION HAS A HACKED SWEEP SWEEP SECONDS HAND. THE MOVEMENT HAS SMALL WRITING LIKE "UNADJUSTED" "FIFTEEN" AND IT IS TAGGED 645S WHICH WOULD BE A 645 WITH SWEEPS SECONDS, HENCE THE "S". THE CASE STYLE AND SIZE FOR THE LARGE 1950 LANCET --32.90 X 37 MM W/O CROWN-- WITH SCREW DOWN 10.5''/23.35mm MOVEMENT, HAS BEEN THE STANDARD WITH ALL JUMP WATCHES.

WHAT DOES HACKED SWEEP SECONDS MEAN
UNLIKE HACKING WATCH THAT MEANS WATCH STOPS
RUNNING WHEN CROWN IS PULLED


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Prior to WWII, most watches had a sub-second register above the #6 position. By 1942, the sweep second hand watch had became the only watch to have. The two most important reasons were the fact that sweep seconds had become a must. The Government issued U.S.A. A-11pilots watch and  the need for sweep seconds watches for Doctors, Medics and Nurses and other professionals, simply caused a rush to adapt watch makers sub seconds to sweeps. Rather than create new movements, watch companies simply re-tooled their existing stock piles of movements. They placed a hollow canon pinion that allowed a wheeled center shaft to protrude through the dial, mounted a second hand to it, and ran the combo with a few wheels from the very sub-seconds wheel they were eliminating..

 

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gsw/mwb/gsww archive photo

 

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THE FRENCH WORE RED/MAROON BERET
THIS 1952 BERET IS FROM VIETNAM AND
IT HAD THE PATCH AS SHOWN
THUS WE KNOW IS IS FRENCH. YET WE
HAVE NOT LEARNED OF ITS USE
BUT IT IS DATED 1952 VIETNAM SO
IT IS A GREAT FRENCH FIND FOR THIS MWB


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TD 2 ND - 2nd Airborne Special Forces (BN)

*******************************************************

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Indochina
IndoChine

France began its conquest of Indochina in the late 1850s. It would take years to complete the pacification of the Vietnamese, Laos and Cambodian People.  In 1883 "The Treaty of Hu" formed the foundation for French colonial rule in Vietnam. In spite of military resistance, such as the Can Vuong of Phan Dinh Phung, and the Viet Nam Quoc Dan Dang, the area of the current-day nations of Vietnam Cambodia, and LAOS were made into the colony of French Indochina.

1940-1945

45 years later, in September of 1940, during the second Sino-Japanese war, the Japanese seized Indochina. Though the Collaborating French government had signed an agreement with Japan allowing the stationing of troops and other concessions,  the Japanese attacked French positions and made landings and assumed control by force. The Japanese allowed the  French to "run things" for nearly 4 years until news of a possible invasion of Indochina as the war wound down caused the Japanese to lock the French up. At the same time, the "Viet Minh", a communist organization founded in 1941 and funded by the Chinese Nationalist Party and the U.S in their fight against Japanese occupation of Vietnam, had grown into a small yet powerful force trained at and in guerrilla warfare tactics.

1946-1954

During the First Indochina War (194654), the Legion saw its numbers swell due to the incorporation of Second World War veterans who couldn't adapt to civilian life. Even so, although the Legion distinguished itself, it also took a heavy toll during the war: constantly being deployed in operations, it even reached the point that whole units were annihilated in combat, in what was a traditional Legion battlefield. Units of the Legion were also involved in the defense of Dien Bien Phu and lost a large number of men in the battle.

THE BATTLE BEGINS

During the French Indochina War (1945-1954), French forces attempted to re-establish colonial control of Vietnam, while the "Viet Minh" forces led by Ho Chi Minh fought for independence.

Initially, the Viet Minh, were unsuccessful in dealing with the better trained and equipped French forces. Their situation improved in 1949 after the Chinese Communist army of Mao Zedong defeated the Nationalist army led by Chiang Kai-Shek. This gave the communist Viet Minh a safe haven for organization and training, as well as an initially sympathetic ally to provide them with arms and logistical support.

Vo Nguyen Giap, the military leader of the Viet Minh, launched an offensive against the French in early 1950. From February to April, his operation Le Hong Phong I raged through the Red River Valley, largely giving the Viet Minh control of northwestern Tonkin, near the Chinese border. The area became a Viet Minh stronghold, except for the RC4 highway.

On 25 May, 2,500 Viet Minh troops overwhelmed the French fortress at Dong Khƒ’†€™ƒ€ â‚„ which lay at the strategic center of RC4, thus cutting the supply line between the French positions at Cao Bang and Lang Son. French parachutists retook Dong Khon the evening of 27 May and a company of Legionnaires took charge of the fort.

Though the French won the first battle of the RC4 on 9 October 1947, the second was another story:

Route Coloniale 4 (RC4, also known as Highway 4) is a road in Vietnam, bordering the Chinese border from Hanoi to Cao Bang. The Battle of Route Coloniale 4 lasted from 30 September to 18 October 1950. Several units of the French army, including some battalions of the Foreign Legion, were decimated by the Viet Minh and essentially ceased to exist as fighting units.


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WE ADDED ANOTHER FRENCH LANCET
FROM INDOCHINA DATING 1945 -1955

RESTORED & OVERHAULED
VINTAGE

1944-1954
FRENCH
LANCET
MILITARY POCKET WATCH

IN

LEATHER CASE

41.5 mm x 40.5 mm
with outer leather case

28.6 mm
without leather

AND
15 JEWEL SWISS BAR SUB SECOND
MANUAL WIND MILITARY MOVEMENT

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NEAR MINT CONDITION DETAILED LEATHER ON OUTER CASE
RED 24HR SILVER # 9  12  3 - RECTANGULAR - HOUR MARKERS

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FRONT AND REAR  CRYSTALS WERE CELLULOID
CHANGED TO MODERN PLASTIC

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A SHOT OF  MARKERS.SHOW ORIGINAL SILVER

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I AM GLAD I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO INVEST IN THIS 1945 TO 1955 LANCET
IT IS AMAZING CLEANED &  RESTORED

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NOTE THE EDGES

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NOTE THE EDGES

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NOTE THE EDGES

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SHE RUNS & LOOKS GREAT

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JUST A FEW MARS ON THE DIAL
THE BLACK STEEL HANDS ARE ORIGINAL

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EXCELLENT CONDITION WITH NEW OLD STOCK PLASTIC CRYSTALS

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HERE YOU CAN SEE  THE DIAL IS FANTASTIC

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I HAVE RESEARCHED THE EGG LOGO WITH 34 IN THE TOP AND AN "R" IN
THE BOTTOM WITH NO LUCK IF YOU COME UP WITH SOMETHING LET US KNOW

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THIS MOVEMENT IS AWESOME
SWISS MADE
15 JEWELS
GOLD JEWEL SETTINGS
SWISS DETAILING
SWISS BARS
WITH
NUMBER 34
ON MAIN BRIDGE

**********************

A SUPER
EXTRAORDINARY
TIME PIECE

*****************************
CONDITION WATCH:
EXCELLENT  -  RUNS EXCELLENT 
*****************************

 

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SOME ITEMS INCLUDED IN THIS
FRENCH INDOCHINE MILITARY WATCH BOX

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French Foreign Legion   Insigne 1st Foreign Company Parachutist of Mortars lourds la 1st foreign company parachutist of heavy mortars (1st CEPML) is a unit of the French Parachutist Foreign Legion that fought in Indochina.Sixty-seven men and grades, with eight 120-mm mortars and 800 shells, jumped into with the first wave of operation Beaver on the edge of the drop zone Natacha.

3 BEP Airborne Heavy Mortar Co 1953-54 C.E.P.M.L COMPAGNIE ETRANGERE PARACHUTISTE de MORTIERS LOURDS. "3rd Battalion Parachute Abroad". On the 4 May 1954, 3 BEP was sent to Indochina integrating with the survivors of the BEP second battalion destroyed at Dien Bien Phu.

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CROIX DU GUERRE T.O.E. (O/seas Operations War Cross) w/2 silver stars. The French Croix de guerre des TOE was created in 1921 for wars fought in theatres of operation outside of France. Awarded During Indochina War, Artillery 34th Field Artillery Regiment (3 Groupes of 75mm guns)XII Corps 24th Div. French Army. Franco- Prussian War / WWI subordinated to Fourth Army.  IVe Arm WW II. IndoChina 49-53.
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COLLAR GORGET 3 REI Officer Early Indochina Bullion Wire Grenade & 2 Green Soutache Stripes On Black Felt. SENIOR N.C.O INFANTRY
Bullion wire grenade. With Button Hole. Shoulder Boards
1950-55 C.E.P.M.L (Heavy Mortar Comp.) PATCH INDOCHINA OFFICER
Gold Bullion Grenade Dir. Embr on felt w/3 gold soutache stripe ROP
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INFANTRY BERET BADGE. FRENCH MILITARY
SCHOOL C.I.T.151
DIVERS BADGE. LEGIONNAIRE   16TH MECHANIZED BATTALION

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Paratroops

1st Foreign Legion Parachute Regiment

1st Foreign Legion Parachute Regiment was born on 1 July 1948 and embarked on the "Shepherd" October 24 1948 at Mers El-Kebir and arrived in Indochina in Haiphong on November 12 1948 . Though the regiment was stationed throughout the Indochina War Theater, the main battles will take place in Tonkin (Northern Vietnam).

On the 17 and 18 of September 1950, the battalion jumped at That Khe to rescue French forces in Cao Bang (Battle of RC4) and was almost destroyed during the fighting taking place around Khe Dong and was dissolved on December 31.

Its losses included 21 officers, 46 NCOs and 420 legionaries whose commanding officer was the battalion commander Segrtain. Only a few survivors managed to reach the French lines, including the captain Jeanpierre, who would later, in Algeria, become the commanding officer of the 1st REP.

1st BEP
1st BEP was recreated 18 March 1951 from the remainder of the original battalion, along with reinforcements from the 2nd BEP and North Africa. The BEP then comprised 3 companies (CCB, 1st and 2nd Company) and Cipla (company Indochinese Foreign Legion paratrooper company-4e). A third company will be incorporated in November 1952.

1st CEPML

On 1 September 1953 the 1st foreign company paratrooper heavy mortar (1st CEPML) was created from elements of the 1st and 2nd SEN. This unit was attached to the 1st BEP.

1st BEP was again annihilated on May 7, 1954 at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu: there were 316 killed at the end of fighting (not counting the prisoners who never returned from captivity).

The 2nd REP remains the only FRENCH Foreign Regiment of paratroopers.

1er REP
The 1st Foreign Parachute Regiment (French: 1er tranger de Parachutistes, 1er REP) was a Foreign Legion airborne unit of the French Army. It fought in the First Indochina War, Suez Crisis and Algerian War, but was disbanded after taking part in a putsch against the French government in 1961

First Indochina War
*Battle of Route Coloniale 4
*Battle of Hoa Binh
*Operation Lorraine
*Battle of Na San
*Operation Castor
*Battle of Dien Bien Phu
*Algerian War
*Suez Crisis

Decorations
* Croix de guerre des with 5 palms
* Camere 1863[
* Indochine 1949-1954
* AFN 1952-1962

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BEAUTIFUL FRENCH OPINEL SIZE 9
FRUIT WOOD HANDLED VIROBLOC FOLDING KNIFE

COCHIN CHINA
1953/54
ISABELLE
2ND REP PARAS
VICTOIRE   1954  HONORER

The Opinel is a brand of simple, wooden-handled pocket-knifes manufactured since 1890 in the town of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne in the Savoie region of France. Invented by Joseph Opinel in 1890 in Savoie as a simple working man's knife It proved popular with local farmers/workers. In 1897, a series of twelve sizes, numbered 1 to 12, were developed. Joseph Opinel built his first factory in Pont de Gvoudaz and produced a machine for mass production of the knife's wooden handles in 1903. To distribute his new range of knives, Opinel hired peddlers to sell the knife. The knives became popular with PLM railroad workers, who in the course of their work spread word of the new knife all over France. By 1909, Opinel had registered the crowned hand as his emblem. By the start of World War II annual sales were in the hundreds of thousands and 20 million knives had been sold. Opinel's best invention was the "Virobloc" or safety twistlock mechanism that increased the safety and versatility of folding knives by allowing the blade to be locked in the open position.

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ISABELLE
2ND REP PARAS
VICTOIRE  1954  HONORER

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1950' OPINEL VIROBLOC KNIFE WITH FUIT WOOD HANDLE

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SIZE 9  23/4 INCHES CLOSED  8 INCHES OPEN

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VIROBLOC DEVICE ALLOWS THE BLADE TO BE OPENED AND LOCKED

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CLOTH LEATHER NECK PIECE SILVER ATTACHMENT & FRENCH INDOCHINA COIN

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SIGNED AND HALLMARKED

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SIGNED
ISABELLE
2ND REP PARAS
VICTOIRE   1954  HONORER

tranger de Parachutistes, 2e REP was an Airborne regiment in the French Foreign Legion. It is a part of the 11e Brigade Parachutiste and the spearhead of the French Rapid reaction force.

AT DIEN BIEN PHU, THE 2E REP WERE PART OF THE DEFENSE FOR THE SOUTHERN OUTPOST FIRE BASE "CAMP ISABELLE" . THE FRENCH GARRISON FOUGHT FOR FIFTY SEVEN DAYS. FROM 17:30 13TH MARCH UNTIL 17:30 , THE 7TH OF MAY 1954. CAMP ISABELLE IGNORED THE CEASE FIRE ORDER AND FOUGHT ON UNTIL 01:00, A FEW HOURS BEFORE THE GENEVE CONFERENCE INVOLVING THE US, FRANCE, THE UK, AND THE USSR. 

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THE BATTLES BEFORE THE STORM

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On 16 September, five Viet Minh infantry and one heavy weapons battalion attacked Dong . It was then garrisoned by some 300 French troops comprising the 5th and 6th companies of the 2nd battalion of the 3rd Regiment of the French Foreign Legion (3rd REI). On 18 September, the fort was overrun after bitter fighting, and only 12 survivors escaped to the nearby post at That  140 Legionnaires had been taken prisoner, the remainder being killed or missing in action.

That Khwas quickly reinforced by the Foreign Legion's 1st Parachute Battalion (1st BEP), which parachuted in on 17 September. The 1st BEP waited at That Khe while a force of French colonial troops, the Moroccan 1st and 11th Tabors, assembled at Lang Son. Designated Groupement Bayard the combined force comprised 3,500 men under the command of Colonel Le Page. The task force launched an intelligence raid, capturing prisoners who said a massive Viet Minh offensive was planned.

On 30 September, Groupement Bayard set out from That Khe, led by the 1 BEP. However, Giap had concentrated ten battalions around Dong Kh reinforced by a complete artillery regiment, together with the remaining forces from Le Hong Phong I. The Viet Minh rebuffed the French forces, which were forced to pull back and wait for air support. Le Page renewed the attack on 2 October, pushing west to bypass Dong Khƒ’†€™ƒ€ â‚„ as Viet Minh numbers were overwhelming.

Meanwhile Colonel Charton's group, led by the 3rd Battalion of 3rd REI, left Cao Bang on 1 October; contrary to orders he took with him his heavy equipment. The group's movement down RC4 was slowed by Viet Minh ambushes. After bitter fighting, they finally abandoned their heavy equipment and linked up with Groupement Bayard in the hills around Dong Khƒ’†€™ƒ€ â‚„ on 5 October.

The French forces were driven into the Coc Xa gorge, where they were completely annihilated by 7 October. Martin Windrow notes that: Some 130 of the Legion parachute battalion out of the 500 that had jumped emerged from this breakthrough fight; they had only escaped by clambering down lianas shrouding a 75 ft cliff with their wounded tied on their backs.
 
In an attempt to support the embattled troops the 1er BEP Replacement Company (120 men) under Lieutenant Loth had been merged with 268 men from 3e BCCP (Bataillon Colonial de Commandos Parachutistes, Parachute Colonial Commando Battalion) under Captain Cazeaux and they were parachuted into That Khe on 8 October, but over the course of the next week destroyed as well.

Only 23 survivors of the 1st BEP, led by Captain Jeanpierre, managed to escape to French lines: it became the first French parachute battalion lost in combat, followed by the 3rd BCCP, of which only 14 soldiers returned unscathed.

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INCLUDED IS A RTM BADGE
Regiment de Tirailleurs Marocains

CPL A. Hamed
2nd Moroccan Infantry Division
5th Regiment de Tirailleurs Marocains
Enlisted on 3th of July 1944 at 5th RTM

Corporal in Indochina for 3 years.

Napoleon titled his light infantry Tirailleur's which meant "sharpshooters". The Tirailleur's mission was to skirmish ahead of the main columns. When French colonial expansion began the term "tirailleurs" was used to classify native troops recruited from the various colonial territories. Each territory would be represented by native troops. The name of each Regiment would include the Colony Territory that the troopers originated from. Thus the 5th RTM would be the Fifth Regiment of Tirailleurs from Marocco or the Fifth Regiment of Tirailleurs Marocains. So, the last initial represented the territory + troopers. Each battalion and regiment would be commannded by French Officers. While recruits came from most French colonial possessions, Many times troops raised fron IndoChina would fight in Tunisia, or troops from Algeria would fight in IndoChina; even in the territory they originated from. Before During and after World War II, Tirailleurs were recruited from Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, West Africa (Senegalai), Madagascar and Indochina (Annam, Tonkin and Cambodia).The last Moroccan regiment in the French Army was the 5th RTM ("Regiment de Tirailleurs Marocain") was disbanded in 1965.

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The Death Of
General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny
and
French Indochina

The French army would recover from their disasters along Colonial Route 4 due to the fact the Viet Minh had been stopped on the doorstep of Hanoi at the Battle of Dong Trieu in March 1951. Then in May of 1951, the Viet Minh move into the Red River Delta via the Day River was stopped dead at Ninh Binh, Yen Phuc and Thai Binh. The Viet Minh were then expelled from the Black River highlands at Nghia Lo after a daring airborne drop into their rear.

From the panic of one disastrous defeat after another to a light at the end of the tunnel in one year could be laid at the feet of the architect of warfare General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny.

Vain, Arrogant and Self-Centered, Jean de Lattre de Tassigny was a landed nobility cavalry officer who abandoned the 12th Dragoons Calvary for World War I Infantry Trench Fighting. After WWI, he was sent to Morocco where he commanded Colonial Troops.  With the outbreak of World War II and the defeat of the supposed "vaunted" French Army, he was called to command the French First Army under the banner of  the Free French Forces. From the South France to the Rhine and Danube rivers, Jean de Lattre de Tassigny commanded Colonial and French forces to victories.

At the end of WWII Jean de Lattre de Tassigny abandoned the relative Military Peace of France and a cushy position in NATO for the action of Indochina; a war that almost all senior officers desired no part of.

French aims in Indochina were the development of Vietnam as an independent state in the French Union with a Vietnamese national army. Following the battle of Dong Trieu, de Lattre continued on his blueprint for success; which centered on ending the "reactive"  war fare --responding to the Viet Minh--  and returning to strict offensive warfare that would re-establish the French military and subsequent Vietnamese national authority in disputed and enemy-held territory.

After a quick tour of the US, where he lobbied the US Military and Political Leaders, and then through France for the same, General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny discovered he had cancer.
Yet, his first action after arriving in Saigon was to implement his offensive strategy.

His ground commanders and he were in agreement with the intelligence that the Viet Minh were preparing another Delta offensive. Now the was time to go on the offensive and force the the Viet Minh to react before they began their offensive by taking Hoa Binh back from the Viet Minh. . 

The French had retaken Hoa Binh with an airborne drop in 1946, but had abandoned it in October of 1950 following the devastating Viet Minh victories on Colonial Route 4. Viet Minh Control of Hoa Binh now meant they could move Viet Minh forces from their Tonkin highlands staging area; they could travel unimpeded to Hanoi from the south --and it allowed for the flow of Viet Minh arms and munitions to forces in northern central Vietnam.

Taking control of Hoa Binh would force the Viet Minh to face paratroops, riverine forces and the new de Lattre created Mobile Groups with enough firepower and mobility to destroy Viet Minh regular forces. Once Hoa Binh was gained the French would garrison Hoa Binh with French forces until the Vietnamese army could be formed to replace them.

The first phase of the campaign, Operation Tulipe, kicked off on November 10, 1951, to seize the Cho Ben Pass and extend French military control beyond Provincial Route 21(the so-called Route des Concessions).It was successful. With a toehold in the Muong highlands, de Lattre moved on to Phase II.

Following the seizure of Cho Ben, de Lattre restructured forces into three operational groups in order to take Hoa Binh by land, air and river. On November 13.riverine and ground forces began their movement  Operational Group North advanced as far as Dan The and the Ap Da Chong crossroads , another liaison group got bogged down in dense vegetation and  Operational Group South reached Kem Pass on Colonial Route 6. The 2nd Colonial Parachute Battalion (2nd BPC), an airborne engineer platoon, an airborne artillery section and a small paratroop battle staff and the 1st Colonial Parachute Battalion (1st BPC) jumped in followed by the 7th Colonial Parachute Battalion (7th BPC) . The paratroops took their objectives.

General Jean de Lattre de Tassigny won three major victories at Vinh Yen, Mao   and Yen Cu Ha. He  successfully defended the north of the country against the Viet Minh. He even saw his only son sacrificed in Frances cause during the Battle for Nam Dinh. In 1951, illness forced de Lattre de Tassigny to return to Paris where he later died of cancer; he was posthumously made Marchal de France.

After his return to France, his successors Raoul Salan and Henri Navarre did not enjoy the same level of success as de Lattre did. They completely disregarded the successful military methods and operations of de Lattre. General Raoul Salan would draw Viet Minh units away from the Red River delta and into a similar campaign at Na San. But Salan and his staff were replaced by General Henri Navarre and his staff .

General Henri Navarre, who had not studied the lessons of de Lattre and Hoa Binh, would make every mistake ever made in Indochina since 1946 in one place: Dien Bien Phu. His decisions would cost thousands of lives, including Americans, cost the prestige and wealth of his nation, cost the entire French Colonial System and open the door to the Second USA Indochina War .

THE FRENCH TRIBULATION WOULD CONTINUE UNTIL
THE BATTLE OF DIEN BIEN PHU.

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MILITARY DOCUMENT
MONEY POUCH BELT

signed
FREE FRENCH CROSS
1ST FFB

13eDBLE
11/13e

MANUFACTURED DURING WWII. THIS AMERICAN MILITARY DOCUMENT / MONEY
BELT/POUCH/ FITS UP TO 40 INCH WAIST WITH TWO COMPARTMENTS AND CONMAR ZIPPER

VIETNAM NOTES JAPANESE NOTES VIETNAMESE COINS AND THE POUCH IS SIGNED

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Lai Chau & T'ai Federation

In November 1953, the Chinese, at odds with the US over Korea, and knowing the US was financing the French in Indochina, convinced the Viet Minh to attack Lai Chau, the capital of the T'ai Federation (in Upper Tonkin), which was backed by, and loyal to, the French.

The new French commander in chief in Indochina, General Henri Navarre, moved to defend his allies. The T'ai "maquis" had long formed a significant threat to the Viet Minh "rear". In addition, the T'ai supplied the French with opium that was sold to finance French special operations. And, by not assisting The T'ai, the Viet Minh could sweep into Laos. Yet Lai Chau was impossible to defend.

So, after contact with many military personel, the US and other parties, a plan was developed and decision was made (against many of the "individuals" and countries advice--including the US ) to set up a strong hold and lure the Viet Minh into a set battle in a valley called Dien Bien Phu.

On November 20, Navarre launched Operation Castor with a paratroop drop on the broad valley of Dien Bien Phu, which was chosen partially due to its aged runway. Focusing on THAT runway, the troops rapidly transformed  a defensive perimeter consisting of eight strong points around the airstrip.

In December 1953, the T'ais received word to march out of Lai Chau and come to Dien Bien Phu -- they were badly mauled by the waiting Viet Minh forces- a sign of things to come.

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AP PHOTO
RELIEF TROOPS TRANSPORTED TO
DIEN BIEN PHU


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SIGNED & DATED AP 6 X 9 PHOTO

APRIL 26 1954. FRENCH TROOPS IN MUFTI LEAVE FOR INDOCHINA
FRENCH PARATROOPERS, GARBED IN CIVILIAN CLOTHES, ARRIVE AT ORLY FIELD PARIS , WITH THEIR GEAR PRIOR TO BOARDING U.S. AIR FORCE PLANES FOR FLIGHT TO BOLSTER FRENCH UNION FORCES IN INDOCHINA APRIL 20,. ON THE FOLLOWING DAY, U.S. DEFENSE SECRETARY CHARLES E. WILSON ANNOUNCED THE AIR FORCE WAS CARRYING FRENCH TROOPS TO INDOCHINA AT THE REQUEST OF THE FRENCH GOVERNMENT. (AP WIRE-PHOTO) 1954.

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DIEN BIEN PHU 1

A bad situation got worse.

The French army had built a huge fortified outpost deep in the jungles northwest of Hanoi in a valley called Dien Bien Phu.

They then sent 15,000 soldiers into this "bastion", which could only be supplied by airplane.

Unkown to the French, with Communist China's help, including tons of arms, supplies, artillery and anti aircraft guns --many being advanced KOREAN WAR CAPTURED AMERICAN MADE GUNS--  the Viet Minh hauled artillery and anti-aircraft guns into positions in the hills surrounding the valley fortress. They placed them in concealed and protected emplacements that made it impossible to detect when they fired, let alone the ability to knock them out.

In addition to the placement of the US heavy weapons, the Viet Minh sent teams of "workers" to spie on the fortifications of Beatrice Eliane Gabrielle Dominique Claudine Isabelle Anne-Marie and Huguette when they were being built and THEY mapped all the structures, including command posts, artillery placements and had the complete layout and measurements of the main defensive and command areas as well as the entrenchments.

The Viet Minh also utilized perfect intelligence to know where and how many of the various troops would be stationed. With Frenchmen, Legionnaires, Vietnamese, Moracans, Algerians, Africans, and T'ais defending various positions in various strengths, this knowledge allowed the Viet Minh to cause some soldiers to desert or quit fighting, and, from 8 years of war, they knew which troops were weak and which were strong willed and they knew which were new and which were seasoned.   On the twelvth  of March the Viet Minh toasted the battle and readied their troops to start the battle. During the next 56 days, the French situation would become   increasingly desperate.

At 17:30, on the 13th of March, 1954, the Viet Minh began their attack. The first, immediate casualty was a direct hit on an important command bunker killing an experienced and important top level commander and his entire high ranking staff. Within several days, the Viet Minh had caused devastation and had struck every important top level objective including the runway. When the French tried to fly in additional troops, the Viet Minh shot down the slow lumbering airplanes, and when the French tried to fly their wounded out, the Viet Minh shot them down as soon as they took off. The Runway was taken out within the first 16 days.

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French Indochina
BATAILLON 1 ETRANGER
DE PARA FLAG

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1954
BATAILLON  1
ETRANCE DE PARACHUTISTES
FLAG

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DIEN BIEN PHU 2

Airdrops, hampered by weather and anti aircraft flack, delivered supplies until the Viet Minh began trench digging and repositioning anti air craft guns to target drops and then eliminating the drop zones. Attack and bombing airplanes were shot down and then the weather made it all but impossible to fly anything.

As the noose tightened around Dien Bien Phu, and the casualties grew by the hundreds, replacing troops became impossible. When aircraft came in many men jumped from moving planes at 50 feet. It was the snipers in black hawk down on steroids, but casualties simply became the two edged sword. Paratroopers dropped to their deaths knowing their chances were slim.

The trenches were dug for two main purposes.

One: To relieve the troops from countless lethal frontal attacks Though the French forces were at more than a disadvantage, they had caused the Viet Minh heavy losses and casualties. In fact, at one point, the Viet Minh forces were decimated and those that remained refused to fight. The Viet Minh had to bring in new troops!

Two: To cut off airdrop zones and gain access to French trenches and positions. In one "trench attack" , the Viet Minh, upon several failures to overwhelm a French defensive strong point, dug a trench under the objective and, after laying explosives, blew the entire defensive position off the map. The parties blown up never knew what hit them.

The Viet Minh ordered new troops in and while waiting for their arrival, they forced various tribes peoples and Vietnam civilians, by the  hundreds if not thousands, to build trenches. Thousands  of trenches, each allowing the next to get closer.

With food and basic supplies missing targets and dropping right into the Viet Minh hands. Tons of supplies became Viet Minh property. In one Viet Minh picture, the captured drops were enough to stack 40 feet high by 50 wide.

Every day the Viet Minh ring surrounding the fortress grew tighter. The French forces that survived would state that they could hear the digging 24/7. A frenzy of digging. They also said they could see the men and woman laborers digging but could not shoot them due to ammunition supplies, At one point there were 50 shells per soldier left!

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VINTAGE  MILITARY COLONIAL MEDICAL MEDAL AWARD

|
medal awarded to graduates of military medical training school

Before the French revolution each medical corps of the Military had to train its own personnel. In 1856 Emperor Napoleon the third set up the Imperial Military Medical Academy in Strasbourg. Prior to this date, applicants for a position of medical officer were trained in Army hospitals.

When the Colonial expansion started, there were very few military health professional on duties in the colonies and their training had taken place in Medical Academies of the Navy. After completing their curriculum these medical officers were assigned to regiments of the metropolitan army or were assigned to posts in territories of the Maghreb, which were either colonies or protectorates (Algeria, Indochine, Tunisia and Morocco). A new section of this academy was added in 1941 for the Air-force.

The school of health of the armies of Bordeaux was set up in 1890 to train military and colonial doctors and pharmacists. During he Great War it temporarily was utilized as a hospital and its teachers and students operated and cared for French wounded.

Marine and Air Force troops desiring to be medical officers attended the school of health of the armies of Bordeaux. The end result was that they became physicians, pharmacists and military personnel or they became a "colonial" and entered the Colonial Medical Corps. In 1945 Colonial Subjects were allowed to attend.

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DIEN BIEN PHU 3

And thus the Viet Minh began digging trenches 24/7 and the French were powerless to stop them. Each day the trenches got closer and closer. No place was safe from the shelling and waves of attacks as the trenches began to strangle the strong points.

Soon each defensive position was attacked and in many cases the French successfully fought off an attack or two, or four, but eventually they all fell. 

On 7 May, an all-out attack against the remaining French units with over 25,000 Viet Minh against fewer than 3,000 garrison troops was ordered.

By nightfall, all French central positions had been captured. The last radio transmission from the French headquarters reported that enemy troops were directly outside the headquarters bunker and that all the positions had been overrun. The radio operator in his last words stated: "The enemy has overrun us. We are blowing up everything. Vive la France!"

That night the garrison made a breakout attempt. While some of the main body managed to break out, none succeeded in escaping the valley. However at "Isabelle", a similar attempt later the same night saw about 70 troops, out of 1,700 men in the garrison, escape to Laos

On 8 May, the Viet Minh counted 11,721 prisoners, of whom 4,436 were wounded. This was the greatest number the Viet Minh had ever captured: one-third of the total captured during the entire war. The prisoners were divided into groups. Able-bodied soldiers were force-marched over 250 miles (400 km) to prison camps to the north and east. where they were intermingled with Viet Minh soldiers to discourage French bombing runs. Hundreds died of disease along the way. The wounded were given basic first aid until the Red Cross arrived, removed 858, and provided better aid to the remainder. Those wounded who were not evacuated by the Red Cross were sent into detention

The French survivors (now prisoners) of the battle at Dien Bien Phu were starved, beaten, and heaped with abuse, and many died Of 10,863 survivors held as prisoners, only 3,290 were officially repatriated four months later however, the losses figure may include the 3,013 prisoners of Vietnamese origin whose eventual fate is unknown

At Dien Bien Phu regiments of Foreign Legion as well as Tirailleur's were present:


1st Battalion/13th Foreign Legion Demi-Brigade
(1/13 DBLE)    
3rd Battalion/13th Foreign Legion Demi-Brigade
(3/13 DBLE)    
1st Battalion/2nd Foreign Infantry Regiment
(1/2 REI)    
3rd Battalion/3rd Foreign Infantry Regiment
(3/3 REI)    
2nd Battalion/1st Algerian Rifle Regiment
(2/1 RTA)    
3rd Battalion/3rd Algerian Rifle Regiment
(3/3 RTA)    
5th Battalion/7th Algerian Rifle Regiment
(5/7 RTA)    
1st Battalion/4th Moroccan Rifle Regiment
(1/4 RTM)    
2nd Thai Battalion
(BT 2)
3rd Thai Battalion
(BT 3)

Parachute Infantry

1st Foreign Parachute Battalion
(1st BEP)    
2nd Foreign Parachute Battalion
(2nd BEP)    
1st Colonial Parachute Battalion
(1st BPC)    
6th Colonial Parachute Battalion
(6th BPC)    
8th Shock Parachute Battalion
(8th BPC)    
5th Vietnamese Parachute Battalion
(
5th BPVN)    
2nd Battalion/1st Parachute Chasseur Regiment
(II/1RCP)

Armoured Cavalry
3rd Squadron/1st Light Horse Regiment
(3/1 RCC)

Artillery
2nd Group/4th Colonial Artillery Regiment
(II/4 RAC)    
3rd Group/10th Colonial Artillery Regiment
(III/10 RAC)    
Claudine
11th Battery/4th Group/4th Colonial Artillery Regiment
(11/IV/4 RAC)    
Platoon/1st Colonial Far East Anti-Aircraft Artillery Group
(I GAACEO)    
1st Foreign Composite Heavy Mortar Company
(1 CMMLE)    
2nd Foreign Composite Heavy Mortar Company
(2 CMMLE)    
Anne-Marie
1st Foreign Parachute Heavy Mortar Company

Service Units
31st Engineer Battalion
(31 BG)

Service Units
2nd Company/822nd Signals Battalion
(2/822 BT)     -
2nd Company/823rd Signals Battalion
(2/823 BT)     -
342nd Parachute Signals Company
(342 CPT)     -
2nd Platoon/5th Foreign Legion Medium Repair Company
(2/5 CRMLE)
3rd Ammunition Resupply Company (detachment)
(3 CM)    
730th Fuel Resupply Company (detachment)
(730 CR)     -
712th Traffic Company
(712 CCR)     -
3rd General Staff Transport Company
(3 CTQG)     -
1st Exploitation Group (Quartermaster Corps)
(GEO 1)     -
3rd Marching Battalion/Republican Guard Mobile

Gendarmerie (detachment)
(3 LM/GRGM)     -
403rd Military Post Office
(403 BPM)Medical Service Units

29th Mobile Surgical Team
(ACM 29)    
44th Mobile Surgical Team
(ACM 44)    
3rd Parachute Surgical Team
(ACP 3)    
5th Parachute Surgical Team
(ACP 5)    
6th Parachute Surgical Team
(ACP 6)
Intelligence
8th Commando Group/Mixed Intervention Group
(GC 8/GMI)    
Operations-Patrols Detachment
(DOP)


Air Force
Airfield Control Post 'Torri Rouge'
(PCIA)     Major Jacques ƒ’†€™ƒ¢â€š¬‚¦ƒ’â‚šƒ€š‚©rin    
Fighter Squadron 1/22 'Saintonge' F8F-1 Bearcat (x6)   
21st Artillery Air Observation Squadron
(GAOA 21)     MS-500 Criquet
1st Light Medical Evacuation Company
(1 CLES)     Sikorsky H-19 S-55
21/374th Air Force Signals Company
(CT 21/3  
Air Force Marching Company
Fighter Squadron 2/22 'Languedoc'     F8F-1 Bearcat      Haiphong (Cat Bi)
Bomber Squadron 1/19 'Gascogne'     B-26 Invader      Haiphong (Cat Bi)
Bomber Squadron 1/25 'Tunisie'     B-26 Invader      Haiphong (Cat Bi)
Transport Squadron 2/62 'Franche-Comt     Dakota DC-3      Hanoi (Bach Mai Airfield)
Transport Squadron 2/63 '     Dakota DC-3      Hanoi (Gia Lam)
Transport Squadron 1/64 ''     Dakota DC-3      Hanoi (Gia Lam)
Transport Squadron 2/64 'Anjou'     Dakota DC-3      Hanoi (Bach Mai Airfield)
23rd Artillery Air Observation Squadron
(GAOA 23)     MS-500 Criquet     Muong Sai
80th Overseas Reconnaissance Squadron
(EROM 80)     RF-8F Bearcat (reco)
B-26C Invader (reco)     Hanoi (Bach Mai Airfield)
52nd Air Liaison Squadron
(ELA 52)     Sikorsky H-19 S-55     Bien Hoa
53rd Air Liaison Squadron
(ELA 53)

Naval Air Arm
3rd Carrier Attack Squadron
(3F)     SB2C-5 Helldiver     Carrier Arromanches (Tourane)
Hanoi (Bach Mai Airfield)
11th Carrier Fighter Squadron
(11F)     F6F-5 Hellcat     Carrier Arromanches (Tourane)
Hai Phong (Cat Bi)
14th Carrier Fighter Squadron
(14F)     F4U-7 Corsair
AU-1 Corsair     Carrier Bois Belleau (Halong Bay)
Hanoi (Bach Mai Airfield)
28th Bomber Squadron
(28F)     PB4Y Privateer     Hai Phong (Cat Bi)

U.S. Central Intelligence Agency
Civil Air Transport
(CAT)     Dakota DC-3
C-119 Flying Boxcar     Hai Phong (Cat Bi)     37 pilots

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Medal Valour Discipline
Medal & Ribbon Indochina Campaign

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FRENCH MEDAL VALOUR
INDO CHINA

Medaille Commemorative
de la Campagne d'Indochine
WITH RIBBON

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President Eisenhower

Early in his presidency Dwight Eisenhower made a tough decision about whether to send American troops to fight in Vietnam. Americaƒ’†€™ƒ€ â‚„ƒ’â‚ ƒ¢â€š¬â€ž¢ ally in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, France, was struggling to retain its colonial empire in Indochina (the associated states of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia). Before becoming president, Ike had quietly urged the French government to grant independence to Indochina, but France had refused to withdraw

By the time Eisenhower became president in 1953, the communist insurgency against the French had become a fierce war. In 1952, President Truman had authorized $60 million for support of the French military efforts in Indochina. In 1953, President Eisenhower increased that authorization sixfold because his advisors convinced him that, it was the cheapest way to block the spread of communism in Southeast Asia.Again, he urged the French government to grant independence and withdraw from Indochina. When the French refused, Ike said their response was, An example of the stupidity of men.

On April 26, 1954, Dwight D. Eisenhower stated: As you know, I started more than three years ago trying to convince the French that they could not win the Indo-China war and particularly could not get real American support in that region unless they would unequivocally pledge independence to the Associated States upon the achievement of military victory. Along with this -indeed as a corollary to it- this administration has been arguing that no Western power can go to Asia militarily, except as one of a concert of powers, which concert must include local Asiatic peoples. To contemplate anything else is to lay ourselves open to the charge of imperialism and colonialism or-at the very least-of objectionable paternalism. Even, therefore, if we could by some sudden stroke assure the saving of the Dien Bien Phu garrison, I think that under the conditions proposed by the French, the free world would lose more than it would gain. If we were to put one combat soldier into Indochina, then our entire prestige would be at stake, not only in that area but throughout the world.

During the battle of DIEN Bien Phu, Eisenhower turned over ten additional B26 light bombers to the French and even authorized sending 200 American mechanics to Vietnam to maintain the equipment he was sending, but these gestures had no effect on the battle raging in the valley. Both Ike and his Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, believed that a communist takeover in Indochina would lead to a similar pattern of aggression against other Southeast Asian states.

Trapped, the French government asked for help: for American aircraft carrier planes to bomb the hills surrounding Dien Bien Phu and for American military personnel to support the French combat troops on the ground. Ike personally wanted to support France, not for their adventure in Indochina, but because they were Allies in NATO
and he wanted the French government to endorse the European Defense Union then being debated throughout Europe. But his military experience led him to conclude that there was just no sense in even talking about United States forces replacing the French in
They would fall, Ike said, like a series of dominoes lined up close to each other. In such a manner Eisenhower predicted that all of Southeast Asia would become part of the communist block. Eisenhower told his staff,  can€™t throw its forces against the teeming millions of Asia. But support for U.S. intervention came from Congress, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the National Security Council. During the last week in March and the first week in April 1954, the pressure on Eisenhower increased from Congress, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the National Security Council.for U.S. intervention.

The President decided to cut off the movement for deeper involvement by stating clearly and precisely the conditions under which he would sanction sending American combat soldiers to Vietnam.

He set out three preconditions: first, the troops would have to be from allied forces sent in approximately equal numbers by at least America, Britain, and Australia; second, the French would have to promise unconditional independence to the people of Indochina; and, third, the United States Congress would have to declare war.

The Prime Minister of Great Britain, Winston Churchill, immediately announced that his country would send no troops to Indochina even though he believed that the British colony of Singapore was in danger. During the remaining years of his presidency, when pressured by his advisors to send combat troops to South Vietnam, Eisenhower would continue to adhere to the principles he set for intervention in the battle of Dien Bien Phu.

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MARINE NATIONALE

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USA AIR POLICE COVER CAP
GIVEN TO FRANCE
DATED 1951

COVER

CONVERTED TO FRENCH NAVY BERET
MARINE NATIONALE

THE DRAGO FRENCH MILITARY TRAINING COLLEGE   BADGE
WAS PLACED ON THE CAP FOR DISPLAY ONLY

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THIS
"FRENCH MARINE BERET "
BEGAN IT'S LIFE AS A US AP OUTER CAP.
THE UNITED STATES GAVE

THE FRENCH A FEW THOUSAND OF THESE
THE FRENCH ADDED THE BLACK BAND WITH
"MARINE NATIONALE"
EMBROIDER IN GOLD
AND
TURNED THEM INTO A BERET

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President John F. Kennedy

In the 1960 U.S. presidential election, Senator John F. Kennedy defeated Vice-President Richard Nixon. Although Eisenhower warned Kennedy about Laos and Vietnam, Europe and Latin America "loomed larger than Asia on his sights." In his inaugural address, Kennedy made the ambitious pledge to "pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and success of liberty.

After taking office he was beset by the same forces that attempted to get President Eisenhower to commit U.S. Troops. According When President Kennedy asked General MacArthur his opinion, MacArthur said that it would "be foolish to fight on the Asiatic continent," and that "the future  should be determined at the diplomatic table." He said that "there was no end to Asia and even if we poured a million American infantry soldiers into that continent, we would still find ourselves outnumbered on every side."

As reports came in and those desiring war increased their pressure, Kennedy advisers Maxwell Taylor and Walt Rostow recommended that U.S. troops be sent to South Vietnam disguised as flood relief workers. Kennedy rejected the idea but decided instead to send 3,000 Green Berets, US Army Special Forces experts to advise the ARVN (Army of the Republic of Vietnam).

Kennedy would send more military advisors to Vietnam so that by the end of 1962 there were 12,000 of these advisors in South Vietnam. Kennedy also sent 300 helicopters with US pilots. They were told to avoid military combat at all costs but this became all but impossible to fulfil.

As Kennedy increased military assistance, John Kenneth Galbraith warned Kennedy of the "danger we shall replace the French as a colonial force in the area and bleed as the French did."

By 1963, there were 16,000 American military personnel in South Vietnam, up from Eisenhower's 900 advisors. As the failure of the South Vietnamese Government and Military to conduct the war or run the country in spite of the US aid and advisors became evident, Kennedy had decided to reduce the number of US troops in South Vietnam by 1963 --but he was assasinated..

 

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CROIX du GUERRE T.O.E.

 

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CROIX du GUERRE T.O.E.
Silver tip.

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1902 COLOR MAP OF INDOCHINA
IN PRISTINE CONDITION AND FRAMED

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YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS!!