VAN GILDER, William S. (Lt. Colonel)

Call No.: K239.512-065 

IRIS No.: 00903820 

IRIS Tape No.: 00903821 

Accessibility: OPEN 

Pages/Time: 45pp/0:40 

Class: U 

Date/Location: 20 June 1968/Maxwell AFB AL 

Interviewer: 1st Lt. G. Harrison 

Source: Project CORONA HARVEST Collection 


(1966-1967) Oral history interview with Lt. Colonel William Van Gilder, assigned to the 388th Tactical Fighter Wing, Korat Royal Thai Air Force Base. Topics discussed are interdiction of targets in North Vietnam (NVN) by F-105, flight commander, operations officer, and executive officer, 100 missions over NVN, briefing photos out of date, weather information from weather satellite, targets in NVN easy to find, need for aircraft modification to protect the hydraulic system, 3,000 pound bombs more effective on some targets such as Thai Nguyen steel mill and tactics changed to World War II B-17 fashion and no more planes lost. Also discussed are the forward air controller's lack of knowledge of aircraft capability, 20mm guns for suppressing ground fire, rules of engagement in NVN too restrictive, morale--pilots had no official rest and recreation, motivation excellent, psychological effect of malassignment in Southeast Asia and the poor use of experienced and highly trained pilots.