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Written March 2013



17 Aug 1965 - 24 Aug 1965

Area of Operation:

Van Tuong Peninsula, 16 miles south of Chu Lai, I Corps

Allied Units:

USMC 3d Battalion 3d Marine Regiment, 2d Battalion 4th Marine Regiment, 3d Battalion 7th Marine Regiment

Allied Casualties:

45 KIA, 120 WIA

Enemy Units:

VC 1st Regiment

Enemy Casualties:

614-700 KIA


To rid the Van Tuong peninsula of the Viet Cong 1st Regiment, as they were a significant threat to the Chu Lai base, with a hammer and anvil attack using amphibious and heliborne forces.


Starlite was the first decisive action between American and Viet Cong forces. The operation was prompted when a Viet Cong prisoner said that there was a planned attack on the Chu Lai airfield. Because Starlite was the first large action against the enemy and ended successfully, it served at a huge confidence and morale boost for the troops.


Vietnam War Almanac by James H. Willbanks

The Vietnam Center And Archive (at Texas Tech University)

Further Reading:

Photo Gallery

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