topics
EventsPeopleDocumentsLibraryActivitiesResourcesReferencestools  
 

events
Cold War Files: All Units: Events: Operation Linebacker II Commences

December 18, 1972
Operation Linebacker II Commences

In Paris, peace negotiations between Kissinger and Le Duc Tho collapse after Kissinger presents a list of 69 changes demanded by President Thieu.

President Nixon now issues an ultimatum to North Vietnam that serious negotiations must resume within 72 hours, but Hanoi does not respond.

By order of the president, a new bombing campaign starts against the North Vietnamese. Operation Linebacker Two lasts for 12 days, including a three day bombing period by up to 120 B-52s. Strategic surgical strikes are planned on fighter airfields, transport targets and supply depots in and around Hanoi and Haiphong. U.S. aircraft drop more than 20,000 tons of bombs in this operation. Twenty-six U.S. planes are lost, and 93 airmen are killed, captured or missing. North Vietnam admits to between 1,300 and 1,600 dead.

Operation Linebacker II begins. The so called 'Christmas bombings' are widely denounced by American politicians, the media, and various world leaders including the Pope. North Vietnamese filmed footage of civilian casualties further fuels the outrage. In addition, a few downed B-52 pilots make public statements in North Vietnam against the bombing.

footer navigation
Copyright 2005, Cold War International
History Project. All rights reserved.