Siege of Dak To

The battle for Hill 875 took place in the Vietnamese Central Highlands during the Vietnam War.

It was fought between the 2nd and 4th Battalions of the 173rd Airborne Brigade, US Army, and the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) from November 19 to November 23, 1967. It was one of the costliest engagements of the war. Of the 570 US troops involved in the attack on the hill, 340 became casualties.

By 1967, the United States Army had been fighting for months over control of Vietnam's Central Highlands. The war had escalated over the previous decade; by then, the US had committed over 500,000 troops to the Vietnam War. The 173rd Airborne Brigade had seen fighting before - the 2nd Battalion was down to about 300 soldierss.

American and ARVN forces had been fighting since November 3, 1967, in the Battle of Dak To as part of Operation MacArthur in the difficult terrain of the central Vietnamese Highlands. US forces, consisting of two brigades of the 4th Infantry Division, one brigade of the 1st Cavalry Division, three battalions of the 173rd Airborne Brigade, and six ARVN battalions, a total of just over 16,000 men. They were engaged with the 24th, 32nd, 66th, and 174th NVA infantry regiments of the 1st NVA division. Despite high casualties, the American and ARVN forces had pushed through the dense, well-defended jungle terrain.

Hill 875 (so named because it was 875 meters high), was a strategic hilltop that overlooked one of the main routes from the Ho Chi Minh Trail into South Vietnam. Intelligence had spotted large numbers of NVA troops on Hill 875. Hill 875 ran along a small ridge-line near the Cambodian border. The 173rd Airborne Brigade was ordered in to slow or stop the flow of enemy troops in the area.

A battle in the Central Highlands of Vietnam in November 1967, one of the bloodiest of the war. It was an American victory, with more than a thousand fatalities on the North Vietnamese Army side, and casualties in the hundreds for the Americans.