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Udorn Royal Thai Air Force Base

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Udorn RTAFB was one of seven U.S. military bases in Thailand supporting wars in Vietnam and Laos. The 432d TRW, "Home of the Hunters" - Mission: Protect the force, get the pictures and Kill MiGs!

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Strategic Location
At 244 miles NE of Bangkok, Udorn RTAFB was near to the enemy's command center in Hanoi. Tactical and reconnaissance aircraft could quickly fly 278k to the capital and select targets in northern Laos or along the Ho Trail on return. Despite being 32 miles from Laos, Udorn was in the sanctuary of Thailand and protected by a natural border, the wide Mekong River.
 
Eisenhower, Kennedy and Laos
In his final weeks in office President Eisenhower expressed caution to newly elected president, John F. Kennedy, that Laos was the first domino. "If Laos is lost to the Communist, we will lose all of Southeast Asia." -more-

CAT and Air America - Secretly the CIA purchased the assets of the Civil Air Transport in 1950 to carry out clandestine operations in Asia. During the Korean War more than one hundred missions were flown over China's mainland airdropping supplies and special agents.
 
France requested assistance from the U.S. in 1953 to airlift tanks and heavy military equipment in their efforts during the Indochina War. President Eiserhower was quick to Ablige the French by sending six USAF aircraft with CAT pilots to conduct the airlift. - more -

  

udornmaingate.jpg
Udorn Main Gate - Courtesy Don Bailey

Birth of Udorn
Mail service to remote Northeast Thailand in 1922 (Isaan) was slow and untimely, usually arriving overland taking two to three weeks from Korat. - more -
 

Udorn Research Group

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