Welcome to SGU Veterans and Families Development of USA, Inc.
The Special Guerrilla Units (SGUs) were composed primarily of Hmong peoples who served as a covert military force for America during the Vietnam era.
By reason of the 1962 Geneva Accords, the United States was prohibited from conducting military operations in Laos, a country crucial to U.S. foreign policy because of its geographic centrality in Southeast Asia. Laos shares borders with China, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, and Burma. After Geneva, America needed the SGUs to counteract the North Vietnamese Army (NVA), which openly flouted the international agreements by keeping thousands of troops in Laos.
The SGUs—who were recruited, trained, fed, clothed, armed and directed by the CIA—answered America’s call. In Northern Laos, the SGUs controlled the Plain of Jars region which was of key strategic importance. In Southern Laos, they engaged 80,000 NVA troops in Laos who could have otherwise fought in Vietnam, tracked NVA troop movements on the Ho Chi Minh trail, disabled substantial quantities of equipment headed for NVA troops in Vietnam, and rescued many downed American pilots. In short, the SGUs were critical to America’s war effort in Vietnam.
Some 60,000 Lao Hmong, individuals indigenous to Southeast Asia, served in the SGUs. They suffered tremendous casualties through their service on behalf of the United States. Of the approximately 350,000 to 500,000 Hmong who lived in Laos before the Vietnam era began, 35,000 men, women, and children died during the war, a fatality rate that was triple that of American military forces in Vietnam. When a Communist government assumed power in Laos after the war ended, the Hmong were severely persecuted. Many were thrown in forced labor camps. Several thousands were able to flee and seek refugee status in the United States.
The SGU veterans seek congressional recognition and equitable benefits for their crucial and unique military service to the United States. As more of them pass away, the need for such action becomes more pressing. The SGU veterans hope that you will join and support their cause.