They Called It Naked Fanny
During the early years of the Vietnam War, several small cadres of men served their country and their fellow comrades-in-arms from a remote airbase cut out of the jungles of northeast Thailand. The base was named Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai Air Force Base, but the men assigned there had a special name for it: “Naked Fanny.”
Initially they were assigned to rescue military pilots shot down over Laos or forced to leave their aircraft over Thailand. But as the war expanded, their mission changed and they were asked to fly into hostile situations in North Vietnam, making numerous rescues—detailed here by the pilots who flew them and those who were rescued.
This is a story that has never been told in its entirety but is an integral part of U.S. Air Force aviation history. Scott Harrington has compiled and written the story of those early years of the Vietnam War at the little base just west of the town of Nakhon Phanom, Thailand. After reading it, you’ll understand why these fragile aircraft and the men who flew them were often referred to as “Blades of wood – Men of steel.”