Biggest part of the problem and one that is ongoing, is that the US military has never recognized that there has been a change in tactics and strategy by the enemy to directly attack support units. Therefore anything they have is makeshift, or adapted from another non-combat vehicle. Trunks, tankers, HMMWV, jeeps, were all designed as rear area vehicles without armor because they were not expected to actually be attacked, they were to operate behind essentially static lines. The real need is to develop armored convoy control vehicles that can resist the initial attacks, and and focus tremendous firepower on the ambush (which is what the gun trucks did), and to have command and control assets to deploy drones, direct the fight, and direct air and indirect fire support.
To me it does not make sense (cost and loss of payload) to up-armor every vehicle in the convoy, but it does make sense to develop a purpose built unit with purpose built vehicles to protect the convoys.
One of the men that attends my church was on one of those gun trucks. He started out as a driver then moved to a gunner position. The TV documentary sure made him happy and he knew some of the men in the documentary.
Thanks for posting.
I've always remembered this convoy I met at an intersection in Saigon. I was leaving town after picking up a load of supplies from the Commissary and I saw what I remember as a deuce and 1/2 (could have been larger) pull into the crowded intersection in Saigon. This truck had quad 50's on it. He pointed them into the traffic and it evaporated. Then the convoy rolled through. Many troop trucks in that one. I'd never heard about these trucks. I don't remember that one being painted up or heavily armored, but that was 50 years ago. Plus that may have been 25th Infantry Division. My guess is they might have been a bit straighter than those in the Transportation outfits. What a story. I had to laugh a bit when they talked about how they came by all the weapons. We came by a .50 and later a 40mm grenade Gatling gun for our roof by trading stuff with the River Patrol Boats.
Like the one guy in the film said, I partied a little too much in collage and got that notice from the Dean of Students that said "my grades had fallen below standards to maintain a deferment and my local draft board would be notified." The very next day my Mom called and stated I had a notice from the draft board in the mail that morning, I told her to open it and sure enough it was my invitation to go take a physical. I was in my second year at Toledo U in Toledo OH but Home was in Indiana and My local draft board was in Fort Wayne IN. it didn't take long for that news to travel did it?
I ended up passing my physical and was just waiting on the draft notice to arrive when the lottery came out, I drew 289 which was supposed to be on the bubble but it never got that high.
I lost a couple of friends in Nam and I sometimes feel a little guilty about not serving but my parents were pretty adamant about me going to collage and that delayed it long enough that I didn't have to go.
The film was very good, thanks for posting it.