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Laos Operation Ends #14790

ABC Evening News for Wednesday, Mar 24, 1971
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(Studio) South Vietnam ends Laos operation, forces withdraw from last fire base in Laos; North Vietnam conts. shelling Khe Sanh, South Vietnam, attacking along Highway 9
REPORTER: Howard K. Smith

(Highway 9, South Vietnam) Withdrawal phase of operation more difficult for United States forces than advance. [Lieutenant John FITZGIBBONS - in response to reporter questions, doesn't want to return to combat area again; go in if ordered, hope can survive today; operation not successful; too much support given to South Vietnam, not enough to United States forces.] Film shows United States unit under attack; South Vietnam forces returning from Laos.
REPORTER: Steve Bell

(Studio) South Vietnam claims 80-90% operation goals accomplished; Defense Secretary Laird says operation cut short by violent North Vietnam attacks.
REPORTER: Howard K. Smith

(DC) South Vietnam forces pull out 6 weeks earlier than original plan; forces planning sweep South, North Vietnam attacks forced withdrawal by Highway 9; limited operation success eliminates possibility of South Vietnam invading North Vietnam.

(Studio) South Vietnam claims 176,000 tons of enemy ammo destroyed, 13,672 enemy killed in operation; South Vietnam losses reported 1,146 men, 100 tanks.
REPORTER: Howard K. Smith

Bell, Steve;
Gill, Bill;
Smith, Howard K.

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