This poem refers to a Viet Cong unit active in Phuoc Tuy Province. They were a militia group from local hamlets who we occasionally ran in to. They were used by the Viet Cong units D440, D445 Battalions, 84 Rear Services and 33 NVA Regiment as couriers and supply personnel.
Poorly trained and equipped they were expendable and allowed Viet Cong and NVA troops to concentrate on combat duties. They were probably press ganged into service, lonely, riddled with malaria, hook worm and goodness knows what else, but they were there when they were needed and believed in the cause.
10 little Chau Ducs hiding on a hill
Along came the Kiwis and got themselves a kill.
9 little Chau Ducs thinking up new schemes
Down came an H & I and gave one his beans.
8 little Chau Ducs looking round for grub
Along came an air strike and one got the rub.
7 little Chau Ducs going like all hell
An Aussie company opened fire, only one fell.
6 little Chau Ducs hid behind a tree
Down came a branch, there's only 5 to see.
5 little Chau Ducs found a brand new track
One stood up to have a look and never heard the crack.
4 little Chau Ducs found a mortar blind
One tried to pick it up, now there's 3 you'll find.
3 little Chau Ducs running out of breath
One tried to run away and ran himself to death.
2 little Chau Ducs feeling pretty glum
One got a note from home to go and see his mum.
1 little Chau Ducs finding little joy
Took off for Baria deciding to Chu Hoi.
No little Chau Ducs to admire the Wolvies view.
No little Chau Ducs, what's Task Force gonna do.
Peter M. Anderson, W3 Coy, 1969-70
© Peter M. Anderson. Not to be published or reproduced without the permission of the copyright holder.