Viet Cong knife scabbard : 2 Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, Operation Coburg

Accession Number REL/01565.003
Collection type Heraldry
Object type Edged weapon or club accessory
Physical description Brass, Leather
Maker Unknown
Place made Vietnam
Date made c 1967-1968
Conflict Vietnam, 1962-1975

Brown leather scabbard to hold a knife approximately 160mm long and 35mm wide. Stitched to the scabbard is a split leather loop to allow it to be carried on a belt. A plain leather band stitched to the central split on the loop is secured by a brass stud and is designed to hold the knife handle steady.

History / Summary

Knife scabbard captured by members of A Company, 2 Royal Australian Regiment (RAR) on 3 February 1968 during Operation Coburg. Operation Coburg was the defensive reaction to the impending Viet Cong Tet Offensive, where elements of the Australian Task Force moved from Phuoc Tuy to Bien Hoa Province to operate alongside American forces preparing to block any thrust against the vast complex of military installations around Bien Hoa city and adjoining Long Binh, located some 25 kilometres north-east of Saigon. The task force included the bulk of 2 RAR/NZ (ANZAC) and 7RAR, along with supporting armour, artillery and engineers. In the late afternoon of 3 February, some 12 Viet Cong were engaged by 3 Platoon, A Company, 2 RAR over the period of 60 minutes, resulting in three enemy deaths and two wounded, with one wounded captured. The prisoner revealed that he had been involved in the attack on Bien Hoa airbase. Besides the personal equipment (see REL/1565.001 to .006) six weapons were also captured.