Maj. John Plaster went on 22 missions while as an enlisted Green Beret attached to MAC-V-SOG in South Vietnam. Of course, none of those missions were IN Vietnam. He made contact on almost every mission. Later the recipient of a battlefield commission, he retired from the Army and went on to become a noted author and expert on sniping and military history. I must admit that I have almost all of his books on my own library and have attended several presentations of his over the years.
That’s why I made sure to squeeze his 2-hour talk in Indy last month on the guns of MAC-V-SOG into my schedule and ignored calls from my editor during that slice of time. And I was glad I did. After 50 years, he was given “his” XM177E2 back.
More in my column at Guns.com.
Sometimes, an idea sounds so good that it just won’t go away no matter how bad it is.
Below, I give you a pair of overshoes designed for Special Operations Executive (SOE) agents operating in South East Asia during the Second World War. They were intended to disguise footprints to fool the Japanese as, if they saw a big ole European bootprint in the jungles of Burma, Indochina etc, it would give away the fact that the Allies were poking around in the rear. The soles did not work very well in practice, however, as they were still very big, and awkward to use, akin to snowshoes.
Fast forward to the MAC-V-SOG groups of U.S. Army SF guys working behind the lines in VC country in the 1960s and I give you boots designed to leave traces that look like footprints of peasants and to hide the movements of the teams. They proved instantly unpopular because they provided no heel support and made walking a jungle trail on your tip toes very awkward, especially when you are trying to avoid contact with unfriendlies.