11THE LIMITS OF PROCESS

Trying to End the Vietnam War

THE VIETNAM WAR (1955–1975) was ostensibly fought between North Vietnam and South Vietnam, but it is often regarded as having been a proxy war between the Soviet Union and the United States. The United States and its allies supported the South Vietnamese government based in Saigon. The Soviets, along with other communist states, supported the North Vietnamese and the National Liberation Front (NLF, AKA the Viet Cong), a heavily armed communist insurgency in the South. Although US involvement in Vietnam dates to the early 1950s, the water-shed moment for increased US military involvement occurred in August 1964. This is when the infamous “Gulf of Tonkin” incidents took place. In two separate ...

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