DUC PHO—The men of Company B, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry were
only 800 meters from their battalion firebase when the first of six
concealed spider holes was discovered.
Located deep in a hedgerow, the entrance was well camouflaged by a
dense bamboo thicket.
The 3rd Platoon, after discovering the hiding place, began a search
and clear of the spider hole, an operation that the infantrymen of the ‘Cacti
Blue" have developed into an successful art.
Slowly and meticulously probing the thicket with sticks and bayonets
the hole’s covering was located. The cover was a woven metal screen
covered with rocks and loose dirt.
Flipping up the screen, the Ivymen detected movement inside the
hole. When their call to surrender brought no response, the hideout was
riddled with M-16 fire. Two enemy guerrillas were killed as grenades and
assorted equipment were captured.
However, the day was only beginning for Company B. Five more spider
holes were discovered in a 10-meter square area.
Searching and clearing the holes, a practice that has been robbing
Charlie of his most well concealed daylight sanctuaries, netted two more
enemy killed and another captured during the day.
The intensive use of spider holes and tunnels in the Duc Pho area
has become a practice since the 3rd Brigade began defeating and breaking
up large enemy units