The Untold Stories Through the Lenses of the ARVN Soldiers

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The Vietnam War began in December in 1956 and ended in April 1975. Initially the war was between North Vietnam and South Vietnam but they both formed allies. North Vietnam’s allies were the Soviet Union, China, and other communist allies, while South Vietnam’s allies were anti-communist countries like the United States. The United States entered the war and sought the help of the South Vietnamese army (ARVN). Despite the US collaborating with the ARVNs, the ARVNs were constantly belittled and were not recognized for their contributions. Therefore, because the U.S. failed to work effectively with the ARVNs, it may have cost the Americans the war. In other words, if the U.S. collaborated appropriately with the ARVNs and learned to trust them with weapons and helped them economically, the war may have ended differently.
Prior to 1945, Vietnam had already been through years of dynastic ruling, monarchies, was taken over and governed by the French, and occupied by the Japanese. Slowly the French invaded Vietnam and were able to take control of the provinces in Vietnam. Following the August Revolution and the end of the First Indochina War in 1954, the Geneva Accords summarily divides the country along the 17th Parallel, with Ho Chi Minh and his group occupying the north and a French puppet government in the south (which is then later ousted when America-backed Ngo Dinh Diem establishes his regime, the Republic of Vietnam). The National Liberation Front, led by Southern dissidents, was established in 1959 to oppose Diem’s government. Diem’s actions regarding negotiations with North Vietnam on the withdrawal of American influence and possible reunification led to a US-backed coup in 1963. This resulted in a series of military dictator...

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