[211932Z.OH 05/22/96]

RCV 07982     9:49 06/24/93
VZCZCBT0818
DE RUHQSGG #6051 1701932                   PW-MIA-2  CJTF-2
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R 212 932Z JUN 93 ZYB
FM CDR JTF-FA HONOLULU HI//J2//
TO RUEKJCS/DIA WASHINGTON DC/PW-MIA//
INFO RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASH DC
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UNCLAS //N03460//
SECTION 01 OF 02
DIA PASS TO DOD POW-NIA CENTRAL DOCUMENTATION OFFICE//
MSGID/SYS.RRM/CDR JTF-FA/J2//
AMPN/SUBJ/INTERVIEW OF REQUESTED SOURCE, NGUYEN XUAN NGOAN//
REF/A/FAX/DET  2/16MAY93//

PAGE 02 RUHQSGG6051 UNCLAS ANPN/SUBJ: LIST OF PERSONS FOR
INTERVIEW-SENATOR KERRY, ENTRY NUMBER 15 OF 83//
RMKS/1. BACKGROUND.
ON 22 NAY 2 993, A JOINT US/VIETNAM INTERVIEW TEAM  INTERVIEWED MR.
NGUYEN XUAN NGOAN, A 54-YEAR-OLD RETIRED PAVN SENIOR CAPTAIN,
CURRENTLY RESIDING IN HUU THUONG HAMLET THUONG HOA VILLAGE, HOANG
LONG DISTRICT, NINH BINH DISTRICT. THE TEAM MET AT THE
ANTE-BUILDING MEETING ROOM OF THE GOVERNMENT GUEST HOUSE, 2 LE
THACH STREET, HOAN KIEM DISTRICT, HANOI, TO INTERVIEW MR. NGOAN,
LISTED IN REFERENCE, BELIEVED TO BE A POTENTIAL SOURCE OF INFORMATION
CONCERNING U.S. PERSONNEL HISSING IN ACTION IN VIETNAM. THE U.S.
CONTINGENT CONSISTED OF MR. KEITH GARY FLANAGAN, DET 2 JOINT TASK
FORCE-FULL ACCOUNTING (JTF-FA) CASUALTY RESOLUTION SPECIALIST; AND
PETTY OFFICER JOHN HARVEY JTF-FA LINGUIST THE VIETNAMESE  CENTRAL
GOVERNMENT CONTINGENT CONSISTED OF LTC LE KY, MINISTRY OF DEFENSE;
AND MR. NGUYEN THANG LOI, MINISTRY OF INTERIOR. ON 21 MAY 1993,
CENTRAL GOVERNMENT CADRE DROVE TO NINH BINH PROVINCE AND ESCORTED
MR. NGOAN TO HANOI. ON 22 MAY 1993, LTC KY ESCORTED MR. NGOAN TO THE
GOVERNMENT GUEST HOUSE. MR. NGOAN SAID HE HAD NOT BEEN INTERVIEWED
BY JOINT TEAMS PREVIOUSLY.

PAGE 03 RUHQSGG6051  UNCLAS
2. SUMMARY.  THE SOURCE PROVIDED EYEWITNESS
INFORMATION CONCERNING THE ALLEGED DEATH AND BURIAL OF TWO U. S.
SERVICEMEN IN AN LAO DISTRICT, BINH DINH PROVINCE IN APPROXIMATELY
JULY 1967. UNABLE TO LOCATE THE BURIAL SITE ON AVAILABLE MAPS THE
SOURCE DREW A SKETCH MAP (ATTACHMENT ONE) DEPICTING THE PAVN
STRATEGIC ROUTE ALONG WHICH THE SOURCE CLAIMS THE TWO U.S. SERVICEMEN
WERE BURIED IN A BUNKER.  THE SOURCE SAID THAT HE HAD SHARED SOME
OF THIS INFORMATION WITH MEMBERS OF HIS FAMILY AND HAD RELATED THIS
INFORMATION  TO A GROUP OF VETERANS BUT HE HAD NEVER TRIED TO
DESCRIBE OR LOCATE THE PRECISE BURIAL LOCATION UNTIL HE DREW THE
SKETCH FOR THIS JOINT TEAM. THE SOURCE'S  STATEMENTS  AND SKETCH
OF THE INCIDENT AREA PROBABLY CORRELATE TO TWO ACTIVE POW/MIA  CASES.

3. DETAILS.

A. AFTER FORMAL INTRODUCTIONS DURING WHICH THE JOINT TEAM
EXPLAINED ITS MISSION AND OBJECTIVES, THE INTERVIEW SUBJECT,
MR. NGUYEN XUAN NGOAN (NGUYEENX XUAANS NGOANX), BEGAN BY STATING
THAT SINCE 1973  HE HAD NEVER SEEN LIVE U.S. PRISONERS OF WAR (PW
IN VIETNAM  HE BELIEVED THE VIETNAMESE GOVERNMENT  HAD RETURNED
ALL AMERICANS PW'S TO U.S. CONTROL. ASIDE FROM THE U.S. MEMBERS

PAGE 04 RUHQSGG6051 UNCLAS
OF THE JOINT TEAM, NGOAN HAD NOT SEEN AN AMERICAN LIVING FREELY
IN VIETNAM SINCE THE WAR.

B. MR. NGOAN EXPLAINED THAT FROM 1965 TO 1970 HE SERVED AS A
COMPANY GRADE CADRE AND POLITICAL OFFICER FOR MILITARY REGION (MR)
5 UNITS IN THE BINH DINH AREA WITH THE MISSION OF GUERRILLA
WARFARE AIMED AT INTERDICTING RVN FORCES WEST OF NATIONAL ROUTE
ONE. HE PARTICIPATED IN MANY CLASHES, TO INCLUDE FIGHTING IN BONG
SON (BOONG  SOWNJ, XUAN SON (XUAAN SOWN), CHO CAT (CHOWJ  CATS),
AND HOAI NHON (HOAIF NHOWN), BUT NEVER CAPTURED ANY U.S.
PRISONERS.

C. IN APPROXIMATELY JULY 1967, EXACT DATE UNCLEAR HIS UNIT, THE
48TH ENGINEER COMPANY 22ND REGIMENT 3RD PAVN DIVISION (AKA 20B
DIVISION HAD ORDERS TO CONDUCT AN AMBUSH IN THE AN LAO AREA ON A
STRATEGIC ROUTE THAT RAN FROM NATIONAL ROUTE ONE, PAST A COLLAPSED
BRIDGE, TO STRATEGIC ROUTE THREE (NFI). THE PAVN ROUTINELY USED THIS
ROUTE FOR CASUALTY EVACUATION, BUT U. S. FORCES HAD SEVERAL TIMES
AMBUSHED THE EVACUATION TEAMS FROM "MOUNTAIN NUMBER ONE", OVERLOOKING
THE ROUTE.  NGOAN'S UNIT WAS TO COUNTER-AMBUSH THE AMERICANS IN THIS
AREA, APPROXIMATELY TWO KILOMETERS  NORTH OF HUNG NHON (HWNG NHOWN)
VILLAGE (BS7414).

PAGE 05 RUHQSGG6051 UNCLAS

D. ON THE DAY OF THE INCIDENT, AS THEY MOVED TOWARDS HUNG
NHON VILLAGE, A THREE MAN ELEMENT OF NGOAN'S COMPANY ENCOUNTERED
A SEVEN MAN AMERICAN PATROL MOVING FROM MOUNTAIN ONE, TO THE
COLLAPSED BRIDGE. NGOAN OPINED THE AMERICAN GROUP WAS POSSIBLY
SUBORDINATE TO THE 11TH LIGHT INFANTRY BRIGADE, AMERICAN
DIVISION. THE VIETNAMESE CONTINGENT AMBUSHED THE AMERICANS FROM
THE SURROUNDING JUNGLE, KILLING TWO SOLDIERS ON THE SPOT.  THE
REMAINING FIVE U.S. TROOPS WITHDREW TOWARD THE MOUNTAIN.

E. WHEN THE SOUNDS OF GUNFIRE CEASED, AT APPROXIMATELY 2600
HOURS, NGOAN'S GROUP APPROACHED THE TWO DEAD U.S. SOLDIERS AND
CONFISCATED TWO AR-15 TYPE RIFLES, AMMUNITION CARTRIDGES, WEB
BELTS, GRENADES, AND TWO STEEL HELMETS, BUT TOOK NOTHING ELSE. USING
BANDAGES AND SHROUDS, THE VIETNAMESE BOUND THE AMERICANS AND
BURIED THEM IN A NEARBY AMBUSH BUNKER. THE BUNKER, JUST OVER A
METER DEEP, WAS APPROXIMATELY 15 METERS FROM THE STRATEGIC
ROUTE, APPROXIMATELY THREE METERS EAST OF A STREAM NEAR A STEEL
BRIDGE THAT-CROSSED THE STREAM (APPARENTLY DIFFERENT THAN THE
COLLAPSED BRIDGE). THE VIETNAMESE ELEMENT FILLED THE BUNKER WITH
DIRT AND LEVELED IT, AND DID NOT MARK THE GRAVE.

F. THE TWO AMERICAN SOLDIERS WERE CAUCASIAN, APPROXIMATELY

PAGE 06 RUHQSGG6051 UNCLAS
25 YEARS OF AGE, OF MEDIUM HEIGHT AND BUILD, WORE CAMOUFLAGE
UNIFORMS WITH INSIGNIAS SEWN ON BUT NO RANK, AND STEEL HELMETS
ONE SOLDIER WAS SLIGHTLY LARGER THAN THE OTHER. ONE SOLDIER
APPEARED TO HAVE BEEN KILLED BY ROCKET FIRE, THE OTHER BY AK-47
FIRE.  BOTH BODIES WERE BURIED INTACT.

G. THE NEXT DAY A HELICOPTER FLEW IN TO LAND MORE TROOPS ON
THE MOUNTAIN AND COUNTER  ATTACK. NGOAN'S COMPANY LOST FIVE
MEMBERS, INCLUDING A FEMALE GUERILLA, AND CONSEQUENTLY LEFT THE
INCIDENT AREA. DURING THAT SAME TIME FRAME, PAVN FORCES USED A
TANK TO PACK DOWN AND OBSCURE THE GRAVE. NGOAN DID NOT BELIEVE THAT
U.S. TROOPS, WHICH SUBSEQUENTLY MOVED INTO THE AREA IN GREATER
FORCE, EVER FOUND THE GRAVE.

H. NGOAN LATER REPORTED THE INCIDENT IN PERSON TO HIS SUPERIORS
AT THE 22ND REGIMENT AND TURNED IN THE CONFISCATED WEAPONS AS PROOF
OF HIS UNIT'S DEEDS. HE RECALLED THAT AT THE TIME, A MAN NAMED
PHUONG (PHWONG) WAS THE REGIMENT COMMANDER AND LOC (LOOCJ) WAS THE
REGIMENTAL POLITICAL OFFICER.  NGOAN RECEIVED A CITATION FOR HIS ROLE
IN THE INCIDENT.

I. NGOAN ONLY SERVED IN THE INCIDENT AREA FOR ONE YEAR AND

BT
#6051

RCV10789                      19:52 06/24/93

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RMKS/
NEVER RETURNED THERE, NOR DID HE EVER SEE THE GRAVE AGAIN. HE

PAGE 02 RUHQSGG6052 UNCLAS
DID NOT KNOW WHO ELSE MIGHT BE ABLE TO PINPOINT THE GRAVE BUT REMEMBERED
THE FOLLOWING INDIVIDUALS WHO WERE WITH HIM ON THE DAY OF THE INCIDENT:

(1) BAO, NATIVE OF THAI BINH, KILLED DURING THE WAR.

(2) TOAN FTOANFJ, NATIVE OF PHO CHAY (PHOOS CHAYS)
VILLAGE, Y YEN (Y YEEN) DISTRICT, NAM HA (NAM HAF) PROVINCE,
PRESENT LOCATION UNCERTAIN.

J. AS FOR BEING ABLE TO FIND THE GRAVE LOCATION AGAIN, MR. NGOAN
STATED THAT IT WOULD BE EXTREMELY DIFFICULT TO DO SO. HE HAS NEVER
BEEN BACK JO THE AREA SINCE THE INCIDENT, WHICH HE SAID HAPPENED A
VERY LONG TINE AGO. HE KNEW THAT THE AREA FLOODED DURING THE RAINY
SEASON AND BELIEVED THAT THE TERRAIN HAS CHANGED MUCH SINCE THEN.
NGOAN KNEW OF NO ONE ELSE THAT COULD POSITIVELY LOCATE THE GRAVE
SITE. HE STATED THAT HE HAD ONLY RECOUNTED THE STORY OF THE INCIDENT
IN GENERAL TERMS TO HIS IMMEDIATE FAMILY AND MORE RECENTLY TO A
VETERAN'S GROUP. THE MOST SPECIFIC LOCATION DATA HE USED WHEN
RELATING THE STORY TO HIS FAMILY AND THE VETERANS WAS THAT THE
INCIDENT OCCURRED IN THE AN LAO AREA.

K. IN RESPONSE TO WHETHER HE KNEW OF ANY OTHER CIRCUMSTANCES IN
WHICH U.S. PERSONNEL WERE LOST, HR. NGOAN SAID THAT THERE WERE

PAGE 03 RUHQSGG6052 UNCLAS
AMERICANS KILLED IN A BATTLE AT XUAN SON, BUT U.S. HELICOPTERS
HAD RETRIEVED ALL THE DEAD.

L. AFTER DECIDING NO FURTHER QUESTIONING WAS NECESSARY AT
HE TIME, THE MEMBERS OF THE JOINT TEAM AGREED TO DISCONTINUE
THIS INTERVIEW.

4. CORRELATIONS TO EXISTING POW/MIA CASES.

A. MR. NGOAN'S STATEMENTS PROBABLY CORRELATE TO CASES 02420-01
AND 0242-0-02, BASED ON LOCATION (INCLUDING PROVINCE DISTRICT AND
VERY SIMILAR GRID COORDINATES); NUMBER OF PERSONNEL MISSING; THE
FACT THAT ONE SOLDIER WAS SLIGHTLY BIGGER THAN THE OTHER;
CIRCUMSTANCES OF LOSS; AND THE DESCRIPTION OF EVENTS FOLLOWING THE
INCIDENT

B. ELEMENTS OF NGOAN'S STATEMENTS THAT DO NOT HATCH
CIRCUMSTANCES IN CASES 0242-0-01 AND 0242-0-02 ARE:

(1) THE YEAR. THE 0242 INCIDENT OCCURRED ON 29 JANUARY
1966 VICE IN THE SUMMER OF 1967.

(2) WEAPONS INVOLVED. NGOAN STATED HIS ELEMENTS
CONFISCATED TWO "AR-15'S" FROM THE DEAD SOLDIERS. IN CASE 0242, ONE
SOLDIER HAD AN M-16 (SIMILAR TO AN AR-15), BUT THE OTHER HAD A SIMM
PISTOL.

PAGE 04 RUHQSGG6052 UNCLAS
5. POTENTIAL LEADS. MR. NGOAN PROVIDED NAMES  OF THE FOLLOWING
INDIVIDUALS WHO MIGHT HELP RESOLVE THE FATE OF THE TWO SOLDIERS
IN NGOAN'S STORY:

A. A TEAM  MEMBER  NAMED  BAO (BAOR),  A NATIVE OF THAI BINH,
WHO LATER BECAME  KIA.

B. ANOTHER TEAM  MEMBER  NAMED TOAN (TOANF), FROM  PHO CHAY
VILLAGE, Y YEN DISTRICT,  NAM  HA PROVINCE, WHO MIGHT  STILL BE
ALIVE, BUT TRANSFERRED OUT OF NGOAN'S  UNIT.

C. HE SAID THAT WHEN HE REPORTED THE DEATHS HE SEEMED  TO
REMEMBER  (MR. NGOAN SAID THAT  HE WAS NOT VERY SURE) THAT THE
REPORT WAS RECEIVED BY EITHER A HAN CALLED PHUONG, THE 22ND
REGIMENT  COMMANDER,  OR A HAN CALLED LOC), WHO WAS THE REGIMENT'S
POLITICAL OFFICER.

D. THE INFORMATION  MR.  NGOAN PROVIDED THE JOINT TEAM
CONCERNING THIS INCIDENT, ESPECIALLY THE LOCATION DATA ENHANCED BY
HIS HAND SKETCHED MAP, PROVIDES A POTENTIALLY VERY LUCRATIVE LEAD
TO RESOLVING CASES 0242-0-01 AND 0242-0-02. IF NGOAN CAN LEAD A JOINT
TEAM  TO THE BUNKER IN AN LAO DISTRICT WHERE THE  TWO SOLDIERS ARE
BURIED, A JOINT EXCAVATION TEAM MAY BE ABLE TO RECOVER THE
REMAINS.

PAGE 05 RUHQSGG6052 UNCLAS

6. MATERIAL  EVIDENCE: NONE. THIS SOURCE BROUGHT NO RECORDS, NOTEBOOKS,
DIARIES, OR ANY MATERIAL EVIDENCE CONTEMPORARY TO THE WARTIME  ERA WHICH
COULD BE ASSOCIATED WITH ANY UNACCOUNTED FOR U.S. PERSONNEL.

7. COMMENTS.

A. THE CONSENSUS OF THE JOINT TEAM  WAS THAT CONTINUATION OF THIS
INTERVIEW OR AN ATTEMPT  TO RE-INTERVIEW THIS SOURCE WOULD DEPEND ON
WHETHER FURTHER  PERTINENT  QUESTIONS  ARISE AND WHETHER A JOINT  TEAM
WILL REQUIRE MR. NGOAN TO ACT AS A GUIDE TO  THE GRAVE SITE.

B. THE SOURCE WAS INITIALLY  HESITANT TO SAY WHETHER HE WOULD BE
ABLE TO  RETURN TO  THE  SITE  OF THE LOSS INCIDENT  ONCE THE  SOURCE
LEARNED THAT  HE WOULD NOT HAVE TO  PAY FOR TRANSPORTATION, ROOM,
OR BOARD DURING A POTENTIAL  TRIP TO THE SITE, HE AGREED THAT HE
COULD POSSIBLY LOCATE THE ALLEGED BURIAL SITE. THE  SOURCE WAS NOT
OVERLY OPTIMISTIC, BUT HE AGREED TO ASSIST A JOINT TEAM IF NEEDED.//

BT

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