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Viet Minh
Viet Minh
victory[10][11][12][13]

Vietnam
Vietnam
is partitioned between North (controlled by the Viet Minh) and South (controlled by the State of Vietnam) Geneva Conference Departure of the French from Indochina State of Vietnam, Democratic Republic of Vietnam, Laos
Laos
and Cambodia achieve independence

Territorial changes Provisional division of Vietnam

Belligerents

Viet Minh Lao Issara
Lao Issara
(1945–1949)

Pathet Lao
Pathet Lao
(1949–1954)[1]

Khmer Issarak[2]

United Issarak Front
United Issarak Front
(1950–1954)[3]

Japanese volunteers

Supported by:[4]  Soviet Union[5]   China
China
(1949–1954)[5]  East Germany[6][7]  Poland[8]

France

  French Indochina
French Indochina
1945–1954

Cambodia (1953–1954)  Laos (1953–1954) State of Vietnam
Vietnam
(1949–1954)

Supported by:  United States[9] (1950–1954)

Commanders and leaders

Hồ Chí Minh Võ Nguyên Giáp Phạm Văn Đồng Trường Chinh Souphanouvong Son Ngoc Minh

French Expeditionary Corps

Philippe Leclerc de Hauteclocque
Philippe Leclerc de Hauteclocque
(1945–1946) Jean-Étienne Valluy (1946–1948) Roger Blaizot
Roger Blaizot
(1948–1949) Marcel Carpentier (1949–1950) Jean de Lattre de Tassigny
Jean de Lattre de Tassigny
(1950–1951) Raoul Salan
Raoul Salan
(1952–1953) Henri Navarre (1953–1954)

State of Vietnam

Ngô Đình Diệm Bảo Đại

Strength

Viet Minh: Regulars: 125,000 Regional: 75,000 Popular Forces/Irregulars: 250,000[14] Former Imperial Japanese Army
Imperial Japanese Army
volunteers: ~5,000[15] Total: ~450,000 France: Expeditionary Corps: 190,000 Local Auxiliary: 55,000 State of Vietnam: 150,000[16] Total: ~450,000

Casualties and losses

Viet Minh: 175,000-300,000 dead or missing (Western historian estimated)[17][18][19][20] 191,605 dead or missing (Vietnamese Government's figure)[21] French Union: 75,581 dead (20,524 being French)[22][23] 64,127 wounded, 40,000 captured State of Vietnam: 58,877 dead or missing[24] Total: ~134,500 dead or missing

400,000-842,707 total killed[25][26][27] 125,000–400,000 civilians killed[26][28][29][30]

v t e

Indochina Wars

Masterdom First Second

Laotian Civil War Cambodian Civil War

Third

Cambodian-Vietnamese

Cambodian-Thai border

Sino-Vietnamese

border conflicts

Hmong insurgency FULRO insurgency against Vietnam

v t e

First Indochina War

Masterdom Haiphong Hanoi Cao Bằng Papillon Léa Ceinture Đông Khê RC4 Vĩnh Yên Mạo Khê Đáy River 1st Nghĩa Lộ Hòa Bình 2nd Nghĩa Lộ Lorraine Nà Sản Bretagne Adolphe Muong Khoua Hirondelle Camargue Brochet Mouette Castor Pollux Atlante Điện Biên Phủ Condor Mang Yang Pass

The First Indochina War
First Indochina War
(generally known as the Indochina War in France, and as the Anti- French Resistance
French Resistance
War in Vietnam) began in French Indochina
French Indochina
on 19 December 1946, and lasted until 1 August 1954. Fighting between French forces and their Viet Minh
Viet Minh
opponents in the south dated from September 1945. The conflict pitted a range of forces, including the French Union's French Far East Expeditionary Corps, led by France
France
and supported by Bảo Đại's Vietnamese National Army against the Viet Minh, led by Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
and the People's Army of Vietnam
Vietnam
led by Vo Nguyen Giap. Most of the fighting took place in Tonkin
Tonkin
in northern Vietnam, although the conflict engulfed the entire country and also extended into the neighboring French Indochina
French Indochina
protectorates of Laos
Laos
and Cambodia. At the Potsdam Conference
Potsdam Conference
in July 1945, the Combined Chiefs of Staff decided that Indochina south of latitude 16° north was to be included in the Southeast Asia Command under British Admiral Mountbatten. Japanese forces located south of that line surrendered to him and those to the north surrendered to Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek. In September 1945, Chinese forces entered Tonkin
Tonkin
and a small British task force landed at Saigon. The Chinese accepted the Vietnamese government under Ho Chi Minh, then in power in Hanoi. The British refused to do likewise in Saigon, and deferred to the French there from the outset, against the ostensible support of the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
authorities by American OSS representatives. On V-J Day, September 2, Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
had proclaimed in Hanoi
Hanoi
the establishment of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam
Vietnam
(DRV). The DRV ruled as the only civil government in all of Vietnam
Vietnam
for a period of about 20 days, after the abdication of Emperor Bảo Đại, who had governed under Japanese rule. On 23 September 1945, with the knowledge of the British commander in Saigon, French forces overthrew the local DRV government, and declared French authority restored in Cochinchina. Guerrilla warfare
Guerrilla warfare
began around Saigon
Saigon
immediately,[31] but the French gradually retook control of the South and North of Indochina. Hô Chi Minh agreed to negotiate the future status of Vietnam, but the talks, held in France, failed to produce a solution. After over one year of latent conflict, all-out war broke out in December 1946 between French and Viet Minh
Viet Minh
forces as Hô and his government went underground. The French tried to stabilize Indochina by reorganizing it as a Federation of Associated States. In 1949, they put former Emperor Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
back in power, as the ruler of a newly established State of Vietnam. The first few years of the war involved a low-level rural insurgency against the French. However, after the Chinese communists reached the northern border of Vietnam
Vietnam
in late 1949, the conflict turned into a conventional war between two armies equipped with modern weapons supplied by the United States, China
China
and the Soviet Union.[32] French Union forces included colonial troops from the whole former empire (Moroccan, Algerian, Tunisian, Laotian, Cambodian, and Vietnamese ethnic minorities), French professional troops and units of the French Foreign Legion. The use of metropolitan recruits was forbidden by the government to prevent the war from becoming even more unpopular at home. It was called the "dirty war" (la sale guerre) by leftists in France.[33] The strategy of pushing the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
into attacking well-defended bases in remote parts of the country at the end of their logistical trails was validated at the Battle of Nà Sản. However, this base was relatively weak because of a lack of concrete and steel. French efforts were made more difficult due to the limited usefulness of armored tanks in a jungle environment, lack of strong air forces for air cover and carpet bombing, and use of foreign recruits from other French colonies (mainly from Algeria, Morocco
Morocco
and even Vietnam). Võ Nguyên Giáp, however, used efficient and novel tactics of direct fire artillery, convoy ambushes and massed anti-aircraft guns to impede land and air supply deliveries together with a strategy based on recruiting a sizable regular army facilitated by wide popular support, a guerrilla warfare doctrine and instruction developed in China, and the use of simple and reliable war material provided by the Soviet Union. This combination proved fatal for the bases' defenses, culminating in a decisive French defeat at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu.[34] At the International Geneva Conference on July 21, 1954, the new socialist French government and the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
made an agreement that was denounced by the State of Vietnam
Vietnam
and by the United States, but which effectively gave the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
control of North Vietnam
Vietnam
above the 17th parallel. The south continued under Bảo Đại. A year later, Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
would be deposed by his prime minister, Ngô Đình Diệm, creating the Republic of Vietnam. Soon an insurgency, backed by the north, developed against Diệm's government. The conflict gradually escalated into the Vietnam
Vietnam
War.

Contents

1 Background

1.1 After the surrender of Japan

2 Rival sides 3 Timeline

3.1 1946 3.2 1947 3.3 1948 3.4 1949 3.5 1950 3.6 1951 3.7 1952 3.8 1953 3.9 1954

4 Geneva Conference and Partition 5 French domestic situation 6 War crimes and re-education camps 7 French Union
French Union
involvement 8 Foreign involvement

8.1 Japanese volunteers 8.2 People's Republic of China 8.3 Soviet Union 8.4 United States

8.4.1 Mutual Defense Assistance Act
Mutual Defense Assistance Act
(1950–1954) 8.4.2 US Navy assistance (1951–1954) 8.4.3 US Air Force assistance (1952–1954) 8.4.4 Central Intelligence Agency
Central Intelligence Agency
covert operations (1954) 8.4.5 Operation Passage to Freedom
Operation Passage to Freedom
(1954)

9 Popular culture 10 See also 11 Notes 12 References 13 Further reading 14 External links

Background[edit]

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Further information: Vietnam
Vietnam
Expedition, Franco-Thai War, Second French Indochina
French Indochina
Campaign, Empire of Vietnam, August Revolution, Vietnamese Famine of 1945, Proclamation of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, French Far East Expeditionary Corps, War in Vietnam
Vietnam
(1945–46), 1940–46 in the Vietnam
Vietnam
War, and 1947–50 in the Vietnam
Vietnam
War

French Indochina
French Indochina
(1913)

Vietnam
Vietnam
was absorbed into French Indochina
French Indochina
in stages between 1858 and 1887. Nationalism grew until World War II
World War II
provided a break in French control. Early Vietnamese resistance centered on the intellectual Phan Bội Châu. Châu looked to Japan, which had modernized and was one of the few Asian nations to successfully resist European colonization. With Prince Cường Để, Châu started two organizations in Japan, the Duy Tân hội (Modernistic Association) and Vietnam
Vietnam
Cong Hien Hoi. Due to French pressure, Japan
Japan
deported Phan Bội Châu
Phan Bội Châu
to China. Witnessing Sun Yat-sen's 1911 nationalist revolution, Châu was inspired to commence the Viet Nam Quang Phục Hội movement in Guangzhou. From 1914 to 1917, he was imprisoned by Yuan Shikai's counterrevolutionary government. In 1925, he was captured by French agents in Shanghai and spirited to Vietnam. Due to his popularity, Châu was spared from execution and placed under house arrest until his death in 1940. In September 1940, shortly after Phan Bội Châu's death, Japan launched its invasion of French Indochina, mirroring its ally Germany's conquest of metropolitan France. Keeping the French colonial administration, the Japanese ruled from behind the scenes in a parallel of Vichy France. As far as Vietnamese nationalists were concerned, this was a double-puppet government. Emperor Bảo Đại collaborated with the Japanese, just as he had with the French, ensuring his lifestyle could continue. From October 1940 to May 1941, during the Franco-Thai War, the Vichy French in Indochina were involved with defending their colony in a border conflict which saw the forces of Thailand
Thailand
invade, while the Japanese sat on the sidelines. Thai military successes were limited to the Cambodian border area, and in January 1941 Vichy France's modern naval forces soundly defeated the inferior Thai naval forces in the Battle of Ko Chang. The war ended in May, with the French agreeing to minor territorial revisions which restored formerly Thai areas to Thailand.

Võ Nguyên Giáp
Võ Nguyên Giáp
and Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
(1945)

In 1941, Ho Chi Minh, seeing communist revolution as the path to freedom, returned to Vietnam
Vietnam
and formed the Viet Nam Doc Lap Dong Minh Hoi (League for the Independence of Vietnam), better known as the Viet Minh. Ho created the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
as an umbrella organization for all the nationalist resistance movements, de-emphasizing his communist social revolutionary background.[citation needed] During the Vietnamese Famine of 1945, Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
blamed ruthless Japanese exploitation and poor weather for up to two million Vietnamese deaths. The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
arranged a relief effort in the north, winning wide support there as a result.[citation needed] In March 1945, Japan
Japan
launched the Second French Indochina
French Indochina
Campaign and ousted the Vichy French and formally installed Emperor Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
as head of the nominally independent Empire of Vietnam. The Japanese arrested and imprisoned most of the French officials and military officers remaining in the country. American President Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt
and General Joseph Stilwell privately made it clear that France
France
was not to reacquire French Indochina after the war was over. Roosevelt suggested that Chiang Kai-shek place Indochina under Chinese rule; Chiang Kai-shek supposedly replied: "Under no circumstances!"[35] Following Roosevelt's death in April 1945, U.S. resistance to French rule weakened.[36] After the surrender of Japan[edit]

Japanese troops lay down their arms to British troops in a ceremony in Saigon
Saigon
(1945).

Commander of the C.L.I. (Corps Léger d'Intervention) in Indochina after the surrender of Japan

An armistice was signed between Japan
Japan
and the United States
United States
on August 20, 1945. The Provisional Government of the French Republic
Provisional Government of the French Republic
wanted to restore its colonial rule in French Indochina
French Indochina
as the final step of the Liberation of France. On August 22, 1945, OSS agents Archimedes Patti and Carleton B. Swift Jr. arrived in Hanoi
Hanoi
on a mercy mission to liberate Allied POWs, and were accompanied by French government official Jean Sainteny.[37] The Imperial Japanese Army, being the only force capable of maintaining law and order, remained in power while keeping French colonial troops and Sainteny detained.[38] Japanese forces allowed the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
and other nationalist groups to take over public buildings and weapons without resistance, which began the August Revolution. On August 25, Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
was able to persuade Emperor Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
to abdicate. Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
was appointed "supreme advisor" to the new Vietminh-led government in Hanoi. On September 2, aboard the USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay, CEFEO Expeditionary Corps leader General Leclerc signed the armistice with Japan
Japan
on behalf of France.[citation needed] The same day, Ho Chi Minh declared Vietnam's independence from France. Deliberately borrowing from the Declaration of Independence of the United States
United States
of America, Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
proclaimed:

We hold the truth that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, among them life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.[39]

After their surrender, the Japanese Army gave weapons to the Viet Minh.[citation needed] In order to further help the nationalists, the Japanese kept Vichy French officials and military officers imprisoned for a month after the surrender. OSS officers met repeatedly with Ho Chi Minh and other Viet Minh
Viet Minh
officers during this period.[40] The Viet Minh had recruited more than 600 Japanese soldiers and given them roles to train or command Vietnamese soldiers.[41][42] On September 13, 1945, a Franco-British task force landed in Java, main island of the Dutch East Indies
Dutch East Indies
(for which independence was being sought by Sukarno), and Saigon, capital of Cochinchina (southern part of French Indochina), both being occupied by the Japanese and ruled by Field Marshal Hisaichi Terauchi, Commander-in-Chief of Japan's Southern Expeditionary Army Group
Southern Expeditionary Army Group
based in Saigon.[43] Allied troops in Saigon
Saigon
were an airborne detachment, two British companies of the Indian 20th Infantry
Infantry
Division and the French 5th Colonial Infantry Regiment, with British General Sir Douglas Gracey as supreme commander. The latter proclaimed martial law on September 21. The following night the Franco-British troops took control of Saigon.[44] Almost immediately afterward, as agreed to at the Potsdam Conference (and under Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers' "General Order no. One".[45][46]), 200,000 troops of the Chinese 1st Army occupied Indochina as far south as the 16th parallel. They had been sent by Chiang Kai-shek
Chiang Kai-shek
under General Lu Han to accept the surrender of Japanese forces occupying that area, then to supervise the disarming and repatriation of the Japanese Army. This effectively ended Ho Chi Minh's nominal government in Hanoi.[citation needed] Initially, the Chinese kept the French Colonial soldiers interned, with the acquiescence of the Americans.[38] The Chinese used the VNQDĐ, the Vietnamese branch of the Chinese Kuomintang, to increase their influence in Indochina and put pressure on their opponents.[47]

Telegram from Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
to U.S. President Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman
requesting support for independence (Hanoi, February 28, 1946)

On October 9, 1945, General Leclerc arrived in Saigon, accompanied by French Colonel Massu's March Group (Groupement de marche). Leclerc's primary objectives were to restore public order in south Vietnam
Vietnam
and to militarize Tonkin
Tonkin
(north Vietnam). Secondary objectives were to wait for French backup in view to take back Chinese-occupied Hanoi, then to negotiate with the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
officials.[44] Chiang Kai-shek
Chiang Kai-shek
threatened the French with war in response to manoeuvering by the French and Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
against each other, forcing them to come to a peace agreement. In February 1946, he also forced the French to surrender and renounce all of their concessions and ports in China, such as Shanghai, in exchange for withdrawing from northern Indochina and allowing French troops to reoccupy the region starting in March 1946.[48][49][50][51] Following this agreement, VNQDĐ forces became vulnerable due to the withdrawal of Chinese forces and were attacked by Viet Minh
Viet Minh
and French troops. The Viet Minh massacred thousands of VNQDD members and other nationalists in a large-scale purge.[52][53] Rival sides[edit] The British supported the French in fighting the Viet Minh, armed militias from the religious Cao Đài
Cao Đài
and Hòa Hảo
Hòa Hảo
sects and the Bình Xuyên
Bình Xuyên
organized crime groups, which were all individually seeking power in the country and fought the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
as well. The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
were militarily ineffective in the first few years of the war and could do little more than harass the French in remote areas of Indochina. The French were backed by the Nung minority while Viet Minh
Viet Minh
were backed by the Tay minority.[54] Timeline[edit] 1946[edit]

Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
and Marius Moutet
Marius Moutet
shaking hands after signing modus vivendi 1946 after Fontainebleau Agreements

In early 1946, the French landed a military force at Haiphong. Negotiations took place about the future for Vietnam
Vietnam
as a state within the French Union.[citation needed] Fighting broke out in Haiphong
Haiphong
about a conflict of interest in import duty at the port between the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
government and the French.[55] On November 23, 1946, the French fleet began a naval bombardment of the Vietnamese sections of the city that killed over 6,000 Vietnamese civilians in one afternoon.[56][57][58] The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
quickly agreed to a cease-fire and left the cities. This is known as the Haiphong incident. There was never any intention among the Vietnamese to give up, as General Võ Nguyên Giáp
Võ Nguyên Giáp
soon brought up 30,000 men to attack the city. Although the French were outnumbered, their superior weaponry and naval support made any Viet Minh
Viet Minh
attack unsuccessful. In December, hostilities between the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
and the French broke out in Hanoi, and Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
was forced to evacuate the capital in favor of remote mountain areas. Guerrilla warfare
Guerrilla warfare
ensued, with the French controlling most of the country except far-flung areas.

Play media

"Envoys probe Indo- China
China
rebellion" (January 16, 1947), Universal Newsreel

1947[edit] In 1947, General Võ Nguyên Giáp
Võ Nguyên Giáp
retreated his command to Tan Trao deep in the hills of Tuyên Quang Province. The French sent military expeditions to attack his bases, but Giap refused to meet them head-on in battle. Wherever the French troops went, the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
disappeared. Late in the year the French launched Operation Lea
Operation Lea
to take out the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
communications center at Bắc Kạn. They failed to capture Ho Chi Minh
Ho Chi Minh
and his key lieutenants as intended. The French claimed 9,000 Viet Minh
Viet Minh
soldiers KIA during the campaign which, if true, would represent a major blow for the insurgency. 1948[edit] In 1948, France
France
started looking for means of opposing the Viet Minh politically, with an alternative government in Saigon. They began negotiations with the former emperor Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
to lead an "autonomous" government within the French Union
French Union
of nations, the State of Vietnam. Two years before, the French had refused Ho's proposal of a similar status, albeit with some restrictions on French power and the latter's eventual withdrawal from Vietnam. However, they were willing to give it to Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
as he had freely collaborated with French rule of Vietnam
Vietnam
in the past and was in no position to seriously negotiate or impose demands. 1949[edit]

French Marine commandos wade ashore off the Annam coast

In 1949, France
France
officially recognized the nominal "independence" of the State of Vietnam
Vietnam
as an associated state within the French Union under Bảo Đại. However, France
France
still controlled all foreign relations and every defense issue. The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
quickly denounced the government and stated that they wanted "real independence, not Bảo Đại independence". Within the framework of the French Union, France also granted independence to the other nations in Indochina, the Kingdoms of Laos
Laos
and Cambodia. Later, as a concession to the new government and a way to increase their numbers, France
France
agreed to the formation of the Vietnamese National Army commanded by Vietnamese officers. These troops were used mostly to garrison quiet sectors, so French forces would be available for combat. Private armies from the Cao Đài
Cao Đài
and Hòa Hảo
Hòa Hảo
religious sects and the Bình Xuyên
Bình Xuyên
crime syndicate were used in the same way. With the triumph of the communists in China's civil war, the Vietnamese communists gained a major political ally on their northern border, supporting them with weapons and supplies. Giap re-organized his local irregular forces into five full conventional infantry divisions, the 304th, 308th, 312th, 316th and the 320th. The war began to intensify when Giap went on the offensive, attacking isolated French bases along the Chinese border. The United States
United States
began to give military aid to France
France
in the form of weaponry and military observers. 1950[edit]

A map of dissident activities in Indochina in 1950

By January 1950, Ho's government gained recognition from China
China
and the Soviet Union. In the same year, the government of Bao Dai gained recognition by the United States
United States
and the United Kingdom. In February, Giap seized the vulnerable 150-strong French garrison at Lai Khê
Lai Khê
in Tonkin
Tonkin
just south of the border with China. In June, the Korean War
Korean War
broke out between communist North Korea
North Korea
(DPRK) supported by China
China
and the Soviet Union, and South Korea
South Korea
(ROK) supported by the United States
United States
and its allies in the UN. The Cold War was turning 'hot' in East Asia, and the American government feared communist domination of the entire region would have deep implications for American interests. The US became strongly opposed to the government of Ho Chi Minh, in part, because it was supported and supplied by China. Major general Thái attacked Đông Khê on September 15.[59] Đông Khê fell on September 18. Cao Bằng garrison was then evacuated south, together with the relief force coming from That Khe, were attacked all the way by ambushing Viet Minh
Viet Minh
forces, which result in a stunning French defeat in the Battle of Route Coloniale 4. The French air-dropped a paratroop battalion south of Cao Bằng to act as diversion only to see it quickly surrounded and destroyed. After that, Lạng Sơn, is evacuted in panic while it wasn't menaced. By the time the remains of the garrisons reached the safety of the Red River Delta, 4,800 French troops had been killed, captured or missing in action and 2,000 wounded out of a total garrison force of over 10,000. Also lost were 13 artillery pieces, 125 mortars, 450 trucks, 940 machine guns, 1,200 submachine guns and 8,000 rifles destroyed or captured during the fighting. China
China
and the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
recognized Ho Chi Minh as the legitimate ruler of Vietnam
Vietnam
and sent him more and more supplies and material aid. The year 1950 also marked the first time that napalm was ever used in Vietnam
Vietnam
(this type of weapon was supplied by the U.S. for the use of the French Aéronavale at the time). The military situation improved for France
France
when its new commander, General Jean Marie de Lattre de Tassigny, built a fortified line from Hanoi
Hanoi
to the Gulf of Tonkin, across the Red River Delta, to hold the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
in place and use his troops to smash them against this barricade, which became known as the De Lattre Line. This led to a period of success for the French. 1951[edit]

General Trình Minh Thế

On January 13, 1951, Giáp moved the 308th and 312th Divisions, made up of over 20,000 men, to attack Vĩnh Yên, 20 miles (32 km) northwest of Hanoi, which was manned by the 6,000-strong 9th Foreign Legion Brigade. The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
entered a trap. Caught for the first time in the open and actually forced to fight the French head-on, without the ability to quickly hide and retreat, they were mown down by concentrated French artillery and machine gun fire. By January 16, the Battle of Vĩnh Yên ended as Giáp was forced to withdraw, with over 6,000 of his troops killed, 8,000 wounded and 500 captured.[citation needed] On March 23, Giáp tried again, launching an attack against Mạo Khê, 20 miles (32 km) north of Haiphong. The 316th Division, composed of 11,000 men, with the partly rebuilt 308th and 312th Divisions in reserve, went forward and were beaten in bitter hand-to-hand fighting against French troops. Giap, having lost over 3,000 (French estimation) / ~500 ( Viet Minh
Viet Minh
information) dead and wounded by March 28, withdrew. Giáp launched yet another attack, the Battle of the Day River, on May 29 with the 304th Division at Phủ Lý, the 308th Division at Ninh Bình, and the main attack delivered by the 320th Division at Phat Diem south of Hanoi. The attacks fared no better and the three divisions lost heavily. Taking advantage of this, de Lattre mounted his counteroffensive against the demoralized Viet Minh, driving them back into the jungle and eliminating the enemy pockets in the Red River Delta by June 18, costing the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
over 10,000 killed.[60] Every effort by Võ Nguyên Giáp
Võ Nguyên Giáp
to break the De Lattre Line failed, and every attack he made was answered by a French counter-attack that destroyed his forces. Viet Minh
Viet Minh
casualties rose alarmingly during this period, leading some to question the leadership of the Communist government, even within the party. However, any benefit this may have reaped for France
France
was negated by the increasing domestic opposition to the war in France. On July 31, French General Charles Chanson was assassinated during a propaganda suicide attack at Sa Đéc
Sa Đéc
in South Vietnam
Vietnam
that was blamed on the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
although it was argued in some quarters that Cao Đài nationalist Trình Minh Thế
Trình Minh Thế
could have been involved in its planning. On November 14, 1951, the French seized Hòa Bình, 25 miles (40 km) west of the De Lattre Line, by a parachute drop and extended their perimeter. 1952[edit]

French foreign airborne 1st BEP firing with a FM 24/29 light machine gun during an ambush (1952)

In January, General de Lattre fell ill from cancer and had to return to France
France
for treatment. He died there shortly thereafter and was replaced by General Raoul Salan
Raoul Salan
as the overall commander of French forces in Indochina. Viet Minh
Viet Minh
launched attacks on Hòa Bình, forcing the French to withdraw back to their main positions on the De Lattre line by February 22, 1952. Each side lost nearly 5,000 men in this campaign, and it showed that the war was far from over. Throughout the war theater, the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
cut French supply lines and began to seriously wear down the resolve of the French forces. There were continued raids, skirmishes and guerrilla attacks, but through most of the rest of the year each side withdrew to prepare itself for larger operations. Starting on October 2, the Battle of Nà Sản
Battle of Nà Sản
saw the first use of the French commanders’ "hedgehog" tactics, consisting in setting up well-defended outposts to get the Viet Minh out of the jungle and force them to fight conventional battles instead of using guerrilla tactics. On October 17, 1952, Giáp launched attacks against the French garrisons along Nghĩa Lộ, northwest of Hanoi, and overran much of the Black River valley, except for the airfield of Nà Sản where a strong French garrison entrenched. Giáp by now had control over most of Tonkin
Tonkin
beyond the De Lattre line. Raoul Salan, seeing the situation as critical, launched Operation Lorraine along the Clear River to force Giáp to relieve pressure on the Nghĩa Lộ
Nghĩa Lộ
outposts. On October 29, 1952, in the largest operation in Indochina to date, 30,000 French Union
French Union
soldiers moved out from the De Lattre line to attack the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
supply dumps at Phú Yên. Salan took Phú Thọ on November 5, and Phu Doan on November 9 by a parachute drop, and finally Phú Yên on November 13. Giáp at first did not react to the French offensive. He planned to wait until their supply lines were overextended and then cut them off from the Red River Delta. Salan correctly guessed what the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
were up to and cancelled the operation on November 14, beginning to withdraw back to the De Lattre Line. The only major fighting during the operation came during the withdrawal, when the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
ambushed the French column at Chan Muong on November 17. The road was cleared after a bayonet charge by the Indochinese March Battalion, and the withdrawal could continue. The French lost around 1,200 men during the whole operation, most of them during the Chan Muong ambush. The operation was partially successful, proving that the French could strike out at targets outside the De Lattre Line. However, it failed to divert the Viet Minh offensive or seriously damage its logistical network. 1953[edit]

A Bearcat naval fighter aircraft of the Aéronavale drops napalm on Viet Minh
Viet Minh
Division 320th's artillery during Operation Mouette (November 1953)

On April 9, 1953, Giáp, after having failed repeatedly in direct attacks on French positions in Vietnam, changed strategy and began to pressure the French by invading Laos, surrounding and defeating several French outposts such as Muong Khoua. In May, General Henri Navarre replaced Salan as supreme commander of French forces in Indochina. He reported to the French government "... that there was no possibility of winning the war in Indo-China," saying that the best the French could hope for was a stalemate. Navarre, in response to the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
attacking Laos, concluded that "hedgehog" centers of defense were the best plan. Looking at a map of the area, Navarre chose the small town of Điện Biên Phủ, located about 10 miles (16 km) north of the Lao border and 175 miles (282 km) west of Hanoi
Hanoi
as a target to block the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
from invading Laos. Điện Biên Phủ
Điện Biên Phủ
had a number of advantages: it was on a Viet Minh
Viet Minh
supply route into Laos
Laos
on the Nam Yum River, it had an old airstrip for supply, and it was situated in the Tai hills where the Tai tribesmen, still loyal to the French, operated. Operation Castor
Operation Castor
was launched on November 20, 1953, with 1,800 men of the French 1st and 2nd Airborne Battalions dropping into the valley of Điện Biên Phủ
Điện Biên Phủ
and sweeping aside the local Viet Minh
Viet Minh
garrison. The paratroopers gained control of a heart-shaped valley 12 miles (19 km) long and 8 miles (13 km) wide surrounded by heavily wooded hills. Encountering little opposition, the French and Tai units operating from Lai Châu to the north patrolled the hills. The operation was a tactical success for the French. However, Giáp, seeing the weakness of the French position, started moving most of his forces from the De Lattre line to Điện Biên Phủ. By mid-December, most of the French and Tai patrols in the hills around the town were wiped out by Viet Minh
Viet Minh
ambushes.[citation needed] The fight for control of this position would be the longest and hardest battle for the French Far East Expeditionary Corps
French Far East Expeditionary Corps
and would be remembered by the veterans as "57 Days of Hell". 1954[edit]

Map of the war in 1954. Orange = Areas under Viet Minh
Viet Minh
control. Purple = Areas under French control. White-dotted hatch = Areas of Viet Minh guerilla encampment and fighting.

Franco-Vietnamese medics treating a wounded Viet Minh
Viet Minh
POW at Hưng Yên (1954)

By 1954, despite official propaganda presenting the war as a "crusade against communism",[61][62] the war in Indochina was still growing unpopular with the French public. The political stagnation of the Fourth Republic meant that France
France
was unable to extract itself from the conflict. The Battle of Dien Bien Phu
Battle of Dien Bien Phu
occurred in 1954 between Viet Minh
Viet Minh
forces under Võ Nguyên Giáp, supported by China
China
and the Soviet Union, and the French Union's French Far East Expeditionary Corps, supported by US financing and Indochinese allies. The battle was fought near the village of Điện Biên Phủ
Điện Biên Phủ
in northern Vietnam
Vietnam
and became the last major battle between the French and the Vietnamese in the First Indochina War. The battle began on March 13 when a preemptive Viet Minh
Viet Minh
attack surprised the French with heavy artillery. The artillery damaged both the main and secondary airfields that the French were using to fly in supplies. The only road into Điện Biên Phủ, already difficult to traverse, was also knocked out by Viet Minh
Viet Minh
forces.[citation needed] With French supply lines interrupted, the French position became untenable, particularly when the advent of the monsoon season made dropping supplies and reinforcements by parachute difficult. With defeat imminent, the French sought to hold on until the opening of the Geneva peace meeting on April 26. The last French offensive took place on May 4, but it was ineffective. The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
then began to hammer the outpost with newly supplied Soviet Katyusha rockets and other weaponry provided by communist allies.[citation needed] The final fall took two days, May 6 and 7, during which the French fought on but were eventually overrun by a huge frontal assault. General Cogny, based in Hanoi, ordered General de Castries, who was commanding the outpost, to cease fire at 5:30 pm and to destroy all materiél (weapons, transmissions, etc.) to deny their use to the enemy. A formal order was given to not use the white flag so that the action would be considered a ceasefire instead of a surrender. Much of the fighting ended on May 7; however, the ceasefire was not respected on Isabelle, the isolated southern position, where the battle lasted until May 8, 1:00 am.[63] At least 2,200 members of the 20,000-strong French forces died, and another 1,729 were reported missing after the battle, and 11,721 were captured. Of the 50,000 or so Vietnamese soldiers thought to be involved, there were an estimated 4,800 to 8,000 killed and another 9,000–15,000 wounded.[citation needed] The prisoners taken at Điện Biên Phủ
Điện Biên Phủ
were the greatest number the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
had ever captured: one-third of the total captured during the entire war. One month after Điện Biên Phủ, the composite Groupe Mobile 100 (GM100) of the French Union
French Union
forces evacuated the An Khê
An Khê
outpost and was ambushed by a larger Viet Minh
Viet Minh
force at the Battle of Mang Yang Pass from June 24 to July 17. At the same time, Giap launched some offensives against the delta, but they all failed.[citation needed] The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
victory at Điện Biên Phủ
Điện Biên Phủ
heavily influenced the outcome of the 1954 Geneva accords that took place on July 21. In August Operation Passage to Freedom
Operation Passage to Freedom
began, consisting of the evacuation of Catholic and loyalist Vietnamese civilians from communist North Vietnamese persecution. Geneva Conference and Partition[edit] Further information: Geneva Conference (1954)
Geneva Conference (1954)
and Partition of Vietnam

The 1954 Geneva Conference

The Geneva Conference on July 21, 1954, recognized the 17th parallel north as a "provisional military demarcation line," temporarily dividing the country into two zones, communist North Vietnam
Vietnam
and pro-Western South Vietnam.

Student demonstration in Saigon, July 1964, observing the tenth anniversary of the July 1954 Geneva Agreements

Negotiations between France
France
and the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
started in Geneva in April 1954 at the Geneva Conference, during which time the French Union and the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
were fighting a battle at Điện Biên Phủ. In France, Pierre Mendès France, opponent of the war since 1950, had been invested as Prime Minister on June 17, 1954, on a promise to put an end to the war, reaching a ceasefire in four months:

Today it seems we can be reunited in a will for peace that may express the aspirations of our country ... Since already several years, a compromise peace, a peace negotiated with the opponent seemed to me commanded by the facts, while it commanded, in return, to put back in order our finances, the recovery of our economy and its expansion. Because this war placed on our country an unbearable burden. And here appears today a new and formidable threat: if the Indochina conflict is not resolved — and settled very fast — it is the risk of war, of international war and maybe atomic, that we must foresee. It is because I wanted a better peace that I wanted it earlier, when we had more assets. But even now there is some renouncings or abandons that the situation does not comprise. France
France
does not have to accept and will not accept settlement which would be incompatible with its more vital interests [applauding on certain seats of the Assembly on the left and at the extreme right]. France
France
will remain present in Far-Orient. Neither our allies, nor our opponents must conserve the least doubt on the signification of our determination. A negotiation has been engaged in Geneva ... I have longly studied the report ... consulted the most qualified military and diplomatic experts. My conviction that a pacific settlement of the conflict is possible has been confirmed. A "cease-fire" must henceforth intervene quickly. The government which I will form will fix itself — and will fix to its opponents — a delay of 4 weeks to reach it. We are today on 17th of June. I will present myself before you before the 20th of July ... If no satisfying solution has been reached at this date, you will be freed from the contract which would have tied us together, and my government will give its dismissal to the President of the Republic.[64]

The Geneva Accords promised elections in 1956 to determine a national government for a united Vietnam. Neither the United States
United States
government nor Ngo Dinh Diem's State of Vietnam
Vietnam
signed anything at the 1954 Geneva Conference. With respect to the question of reunification, the non-communist Vietnamese delegation objected strenuously to any division of Vietnam, but lost out when the French accepted the proposal of Viet Minh
Viet Minh
delegate Pham Van Dong,[65] who proposed that Vietnam
Vietnam
eventually be united by elections under the supervision of "local commissions".[66] The United States
United States
countered with what became known as the "American Plan", with the support of South Vietnam
Vietnam
and the United Kingdom.[67] It provided for unification elections under the supervision of the United Nations, but was rejected by the Soviet delegation.[67] From his home in France, Bảo Đại
Bảo Đại
appointed Ngô Đình Diệm as Prime Minister of South Vietnam. With American support, in 1955 Diem used a referendum to remove the former Emperor and declare himself the president of the Republic of Vietnam. When the elections failed to occur, Viet Minh
Viet Minh
cadres who stayed behind in South Vietnam
Vietnam
were activated and started to fight the government. North Vietnam
Vietnam
also invaded and occupied portions of Laos
Laos
to assist in supplying the National Liberation Front guerillas fighting in South Vietnam. The war gradually escalated into the Second Indochina War, more commonly known as the Vietnam
Vietnam
War in the West and the American War in Vietnam. French domestic situation[edit] The 1946 Constitution creating the Fourth Republic (1946–1958) made France
France
a Parliamentary republic. Because of the political context, it could find stability only by an alliance between the three dominant parties: the Christian Democratic Popular Republican Movement (MRP), the French Communist Party
French Communist Party
(PCF) and the socialist French Section of the Workers' International (SFIO). Known as tripartisme, this alliance briefly lasted until the May 1947 crisis, with the expulsion from Paul Ramadier's SFIO government of the PCF ministers, marking the official start of the Cold War
Cold War
in France. This had the effect of weakening the regime, with the two most significant movements of this period, Communism
Communism
and Gaullism, in opposition. Unlikely alliances had to be made between left- and right-wing parties in order to form a government invested by the National Assembly, resulting in parliamentary instability, with fourteen prime ministers in succession between 1947 and 1954's Battle of Dien Bien Phu. The rapid turnover of governments (there were 17 different governments during the war) left France
France
unable to prosecute the war with any consistent policy, according to veteran General René de Biré (who was a lieutenant at Dien Bien Phu).[68] France
France
was increasingly unable to afford the costly conflict in Indochina and, by 1954, the United States was paying 80% of France's war effort, which was $3,000,000 per day in 1952.[69][70] A strong anti-war movement came into existence in France
France
driven mostly by the then-powerful French Communist Party
French Communist Party
(outpowering the socialists) and its young militant associations, major trade unions such as the General Confederation of Labour, and notable leftist intellectuals.[71][72] The first occurrence was probably at the National Assembly on March 21, 1947, when the communist deputees refused to back the military credits for Indochina. The following year a pacifist event was organized, the "1st Worldwide Congress of Peace Partisans" (1er Congrès Mondial des Partisans de la Paix, the World Peace Council's predecessor), which took place March 25–28, 1948, in Paris, with the French communist Nobel laureate atomic physicist Frédéric Joliot-Curie
Frédéric Joliot-Curie
as president. Later, on April 28, 1950, Joliot-Curie would be dismissed from the military and civilian Atomic Energy Commission for political reasons.[73] Young communist militants (UJRF) were also accused of sabotage actions like the famous Henri Martin affair and the case of Raymonde Dien, who was jailed one year for having blocked an ammunition train, with the help of other militants, in order to prevent the supply of French forces in Indochina in February 1950.[68][71] Similar actions against trains occurred in Roanne, Charleville, Marseille, and Paris. Even ammunition sabotage by PCF agents has been reported, such as grenades exploding in the hands of legionaries.[68] These actions became such a cause for concern by 1950 that the French Assembly voted a law against sabotage between March 2–8. At this session tension was so high between politicians that fighting ensued in the assembly following communist deputees’ speeches against the Indochinese policy.[73] This month saw the French navy mariner and communist militant Henri Martin arrested by military police and jailed for five years for sabotage and propaganda operations in Toulon's arsenal. On May 5 communist Ministers were dismissed from the government, marking the end of Tripartism.[73] A few months later on November 11, 1950, the French Communist Party
French Communist Party
leader Maurice Thorez went to Moscow. Some military officers involved in the Revers Report scandal (Rapport Revers) such as Salan were pessimistic about the way the war was being conducted,[74] with multiple political-military scandals all happening during the war, starting with the Generals' Affair (Affaire des Généraux) from September 1949 to November 1950. As a result, General Georges Revers was dismissed in December 1949 and socialist Defense Ministry Jules Moch (SFIO) was brought on court by the National Assembly on November 28, 1950. Emerging media played their role.[clarification needed] The scandal started the commercial success of the first French news magazine, L'Express, created in 1953.[75] The third scandal was financial-political, concerning military corruption, money and arms trading involving both the French Union
French Union
army and the Viet Minh, known as the Piastres affair. The war ended in 1954 but its sequel started in French Algeria
French Algeria
where the French Communist Party played an even stronger role by supplying the National Liberation Front (FLN) rebels with intelligence documents and financial aid. They were called "the suitcase carriers" (les porteurs de valises). In the French news, the Indochina War was presented as a direct continuation of the Korean War, where France
France
had fought: a UN French battalion, incorporated in a U.S. unit in Korea, was later involved in the Battle of Mang Yang Pass of June and July 1954.[61] In an interview taped in May 2004, General Marcel Bigeard
Marcel Bigeard
(6th BPC) argues that "one of the deepest mistakes done by the French during the war was the propaganda telling you are fighting for Freedom, you are fighting against Communism",[62] hence the sacrifice of volunteers during the climactic battle of Dien Bien Phu. In the latest days of the siege, 652 non-paratrooper soldiers from all army corps from cavalry to infantry to artillery dropped for the first and last time of their life to support their comrades. The Cold War
Cold War
excuse was later used by General Maurice Challe
Maurice Challe
through his famous "Do you want Mers El Kébir and Algiers
Algiers
to become Soviet bases as soon as tomorrow?", during the Generals' putsch (Algerian War) of 1961, with limited effect though.[76] A few hours after the French Union
French Union
defeat at Dien Bien Phu in May 1954, United States
United States
Secretary of State John Foster Dulles
John Foster Dulles
made an official speech depicting the "tragic event" and "its defense for fifty seven days and nights will remain in History as one of the most heroic of all time." Later on, he denounced Chinese aid to the Viet Minh, explained that the United States
United States
could not act openly because of international pressure, and concluded with the call to "all concerned nations" concerning the necessity of "a collective defense" against "the communist aggression".[4] War crimes and re-education camps[edit]

The Boudarel Affair. Georges Boudarel was a French communist militant who used brainwashing and torture against French Union
French Union
POWs in Viet Minh reeducation camps.[77] The French national association of POWs brought Boudarel to court for a war crime charge. Most of the French Union prisoners died in the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
camps and many POWs from the Vietnamese National Army
Vietnamese National Army
were missing. Passage to Freedom
Passage to Freedom
was a Franco-American operation to evacuate refugees. Loyal Indochinese evacuated to metropolitan France
France
were kept in detention camps.[78] In 1957, the French Chief of Staff with Raoul Salan
Raoul Salan
would use the POWs’ experience with the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
reeducation camps to create two "Instruction Center for Pacification and Counter-Insurgency" (Centre d'Instruction à la Pacification et à la Contre-Guérilla aka CIPCG) and train thousands of officers during the Algerian War. According to Arthur J. Dommen, the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
assassinated between 100,000 and 150,000 civilians during the war; total civilian deaths are estimated at 400,000.[30][79] The French Army tortured Viet Minh
Viet Minh
prisoners[80] Cat Bay Massacre, 311 Vietnamese civilians were killed by the French Army[81] Cau Hoa Massacre, 286 Vietnamese civilians were killed by the French Army[82]

French Union
French Union
involvement[edit] Further information: French Union By 1946, France
France
headed the French Union. As successive governments had forbidden the sending of metropolitan troops, the French Far East Expeditionary Corps (CEFEO) was created in March 1945. The Union gathered combatants from almost all French territories made of colonies, protectorates and associated states (Madagascar, Senegal, Tunisia, etc.) to fight in French Indochina, which was then occupied by the Japanese. About 325,000 of the 500,000 French troops were Indochinese, almost all of whom were used in conventional units.[83] French West Africa
French West Africa
(Afrique Occidentale Française, AOF) was a federation of African colonies. Senegalese and other African troops were sent to fight in Indochina. Some African alumni were trained in the Infantry
Infantry
Instruction Center no.2 (Centre d'Instruction de l'Infanterie no.2) located in southern Vietnam. Senegalese of the Colonial Artillery fought at the siege of Dien Bien Phu. As a French colony (later a full province), French Algeria
French Algeria
sent local troops to Indochina including several RTA (Régiment de Tirailleurs Algériens) light infantry battalions. Morocco
Morocco
was a French protectorate and sent troops to support the French effort in Indochina. Moroccan troops were part of light infantry RTMs (Régiment de Tirailleurs Marocains) for the "Moroccan Sharpshooters Regiment".

French Foreign Legion
French Foreign Legion
patrol question a suspected member of the Viet Minh.

As a French protectorate, Bizerte, Tunisia, was a major French base. Tunisian troops, mostly RTT (Régiment de Tirailleurs Tunisiens), were sent to Indochina. Part of French Indochina, then part of the French Union and later an associated state, Laos
Laos
fought the communists along with French forces. The role played by Laotian troops in the conflict was depicted by veteran Pierre Schoendoerffer's famous 317th Platoon released in 1964.[84] The French Indochina
French Indochina
state of Cambodia
Cambodia
played a significant role during the Indochina War through its infantrymen and paratroopers.[citation needed] While Bảo Đại's State of Vietnam
Vietnam
(formerly Annam, Tonkin, Cochinchina) had the Vietnamese National Army
Vietnamese National Army
supporting the French forces, some minorities were trained and organized as regular battalions (mostly infantry tirailleurs) that fought with French forces against the Viet Minh. The Tai Battalion 2 (BT2, 2e Bataillon Thai) is infamous for its desertion during the siege of Dien Bien Phu. Propaganda leaflets written in Tai and French sent by the Viet Minh were found in the deserted positions and trenches. Such deserters were called the Nam Yum rats by Bigeard during the siege, as they hid close to the Nam Yum river during the day and searched at night for supply drops.[85] Another allied minority was the Muong people
Muong people
(Mường). The 1st Muong Battalion (1er Bataillon Muong) was awarded the Croix de guerre des théâtres d'opérations extérieures after the victorious Battle of Vinh Yen in 1951.[86] In the 1950s, the French established secret commando groups based on loyal Montagnard ethnic minorities referred to as "partisans" or "maquisards", called the Groupement de Commandos Mixtes Aéroportés (Composite Airborne Commando Group or GCMA), later renamed Groupement Mixte d'Intervention (GMI, or Mixed Intervention Group), directed by the SDECE counter-intelligence service. The SDECE's "Service Action" GCMA used both commando and guerrilla techniques and operated in intelligence and secret missions from 1950 to 1955.[87][88] Declassified information about the GCMA includes the name of its commander, famous Colonel Roger Trinquier, and a mission on April 30, 1954, when Jedburgh veteran Captain Sassi led the Meo partisans of the GCMA Malo-Servan in Operation Condor
Operation Condor
during the siege of Dien Bien Phu.[89] In 1951, Adjutant-Chief Vandenberghe from the 6th Colonial Infantry Regiment (6e RIC) created the "Commando Vanden" (aka "Black Tigers", aka "North Vietnam
Vietnam
Commando #24") based in Nam Định. Recruits were volunteers from the Thổ people, Nùng people
Nùng people
and Miao people. This commando unit wore Viet Minh
Viet Minh
black uniforms to confuse the enemy and used techniques of the experienced Bo doi (Bộ đội, regular army) and Du Kich (guerrilla unit). Viet Minh
Viet Minh
prisoners were recruited in POW camps. The commando was awarded the Croix de guerre des TOE with palm in July 1951; however, Vandenberghe was betrayed by a Viet Minh recruit, commander Nguien Tinh Khoi (308th Division's 56th Regiment), who assassinated him (and his Vietnamese fiancée) with external help on the night of January 5, 1952.[90][91][92] Coolies and POWs known as PIM (Prisonniers Internés Militaires, which is basically the same as POW) were civilians used by the army as logistical support personnel. During the battle of Dien Bien Phu, coolies were in charge of burying the corpses—during the first days only, after they were abandoned, hence giving off a terrible smell, according to veterans—and they had the dangerous job of gathering supply packets delivered in drop zones while the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
artillery was firing hard to destroy the crates. The Viet Minh
Viet Minh
also used thousands of coolies to carry the Chu-Luc (regional units) supplies and ammunition during assaults. The PIM were civilian males old enough to join Bảo Đại's army. They were captured in enemy-controlled villages, and those who refused to join the State of Vietnam's army were considered prisoners or used as coolies to support a given regiment.[93] Foreign involvement[edit] Japanese volunteers[edit] Further information: Japanese holdout Many former Imperial Japanese Army
Imperial Japanese Army
soldiers fought with the Viet Minh - perhaps as many as 5,000 volunteered their services throughout the war. These Japanese stayed behind in Indochina soon after World War II concluded in 1945 out of a peak number of 50,000 - the majority of which were repatriated to Japan
Japan
by the then occupying British.[94] For those that stayed behind, fighting with the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
became a more attractive idea than returning to a defeated and occupied homeland. In addition the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
had very little experience in warfare or government so the advice of the Japanese was welcome. Some of the Japanese were ex- Kenpeitai
Kenpeitai
who were wanted for questioning by Allied authorities. Giap arranged for them all to receive Vietnamese citizenship and false identification papers.[94] Some Japanese were captured by the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
during the last months of the war and were recruited in to their ranks. Most of the Japanese officers who stayed served as military instructors for the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
forces, most notably at the Quang Ngai Army Academy.[95] There were necessary conventional military knowledge such as how to conduct assaults, night attacks, company/battalion level exercises, commanding, tactics, navigation, communications and movements. A few, however, actively led Vietnamese forces into combat.[95] The French also identified eleven Japanese nurses and two doctors working for the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
in northern Vietnam
Vietnam
in 1951. A number of Japanese are remembered at the Yasukuni Shrine
Yasukuni Shrine
as a result of the First Indochina War.[96] People's Republic of China[edit]

The People's Republic of China
China
(PRC) supplied the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
with hundreds of Soviet-built GAZ-51
GAZ-51
trucks during the 1950s.

One point that the French had a major problem with was the concept of "sanctuary". So long as the anti-colonial revolutionaries who are fighting a guerilla war have a sanctuary, in which they can hide out, rest and recuperate after losses and store supplies and necessary material, it is almost impossible and highly unlikely for any foreign enemy or foe to ever destroy and defeat them.[citation needed] During the early 1950s, the southern areas of the China, by then under communist rule and allied with the anti-French Viet Minh, was used as a sanctuary by their guerrilla troops. Several hit-and-run ambushes were successfully operated and carried out by the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
against French Union
French Union
military convoys along the neighboring Route Coloniale 4 (RC 4) roadway, which was a major supply passage in Tonkin
Tonkin
(northern Vietnam). One of the most famous attacks of this nature was the Battle of Cao Bằng. The People's Republic of China
China
supplied and provided the Viet Minh guerrilla forces with almost every kind of crucial and important supplies and material required, such as food (including thousands of tonnes of rice), money, medics and medical aid and supplies, arms and weapons (ranging from artillery guns (24 of such were used at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu) to rifles and machine-guns), ammunition and explosives and other types of military equipment, including a large part of war-material captured from the then-recently defeated National Revolutionary Army (NRA) of Chiang Kai-shek's Nationalist Chinese government following the end of the Chinese Civil War
Chinese Civil War
in 1949. Evidence of the PRC's secret aid and supplies were found hidden in caves during the French military's Operation Hirondelle in July 1953.[97][98] 2,000 military advisors from the PRC and the Soviet Union trained the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
guerrilla forces with the aim of turning it into a full-fledged armed force to fight off their French colonial masters and gain national independence.[68] On top of this, the PRC sent two People's Liberation Army (PLA) artillery battalions to fight at the siege of Dien Bien Phu on May 6 in 1954, with one battalion operating the Soviet Katyusha multiple-rocket launcher systems (MRLS) against French forces besieged at Dien Bien Phu's valley.[99] Soviet Union[edit] The Soviet Union
Soviet Union
was the other major ally of the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
aside from the PRC, supplying GAZ-built trucks, truck engines and motor-parts, fuel, tyres, many different kinds of arms and weapons (including thousands of Škoda-manufactured light machine-guns of Czech origin), all kinds of ammunition (ranging from rifle to machine-gun ammunition), various types of anti-aircraft guns (such as the 37mm air-defense gun) and even cigarettes and tobacco products. During Operation Hirondelle, French Union
French Union
paratroopers captured and destroyed many tonnes of Soviet-supplied material destined for Viet Minh
Viet Minh
use in the area of Ky Lua.[97][100] According to General Giap, the chief military leader of all Viet Minh
Viet Minh
forces, the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
used about 400 Soviet-produced GAZ-51
GAZ-51
trucks at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu. Because the trucks were concealed and hidden with the use of highly effective camouflage (comprising predominantly of thick vegetation), French Union reconnaissance aircraft were not able to notice them and take note of the effective Viet Minh
Viet Minh
supply train. On May 6 in 1954, during the siege against French forces at the valley at Dien Bien Phu, Soviet-supplied Katyusha MRLS were successfully fielded against French Union military outposts, destroying enemy troop formations and bases and lowering their morale levels. Together with the PRC, the Soviet Union sent up to 2,000 military advisors to provide training to the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
guerilla troops and turn it into a fully recognised army.[68] United States[edit] Mutual Defense Assistance Act
Mutual Defense Assistance Act
(1950–1954)[edit]

Anti-communist Vietnamese refugees moving from a French LSM landing ship to the USS Montague during Operation Passage to Freedom
Operation Passage to Freedom
in 1954

At the beginning of the war, the U.S. was neutral in the conflict because of opposition to European colonialism, because the Viet Minh had recently been their allies, and because most of its attention was focused on Europe where Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill
argued an Iron Curtain
Iron Curtain
had fallen. Then the U.S. government gradually began supporting the French in their war effort, primarily through the Mutual Defense Assistance Act, as a means of stabilizing the French Fourth Republic
French Fourth Republic
in which the French Communist Party
French Communist Party
was a significant political force. A dramatic shift occurred in American policy after the victory of Mao Zedong's Communist Party of China
China
in the Chinese Civil War. By 1949, however, the United States
United States
became concerned about the spread of communism in Asia, particularly following the end of the Chinese Civil War, and began to strongly support the French as the two countries were bound by the Cold War
Cold War
Mutual Defense Programme.[101] After the Moch–Marshall meeting of September 23, 1950, in Washington, the United States
United States
started to support the French Union effort politically, logistically and financially. Officially, US involvement did not include use of armed force. However, recently it has been discovered that undercover (CAT)—or not—US Air Force pilots flew to support the French during Operation Castor
Operation Castor
in November 1953. Two US pilots were killed in action during the siege at Dien Bien Phu the following year. These facts were declassified and made public more than 50 years after the events, in 2005 during the Légion d'honneur award ceremony by the French ambassador in Washington.[102] In May 1950, after the capture of Hainan
Hainan
island by Chinese communist forces, U.S. President Harry S. Truman
Harry S. Truman
began covertly authorizing direct financial assistance to the French, and on June 27, 1950, after the outbreak of the Korean War, announced publicly that the U.S. was doing so. It was feared in Washington that if Ho were to win the war, with his ties to the Soviet Union, he would establish a puppet state with Moscow with the Soviets ultimately controlling Vietnamese affairs. The prospect of a communist-dominated Southeast Asia was enough to spur the U.S. to support France, so that the spread of Soviet-allied communism could be contained. On June 30, 1950, the first U.S. supplies for Indochina were delivered. In September, Truman sent the Military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG) to Indochina to assist the French. Later, in 1954, U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower
Dwight D. Eisenhower
explained the escalation risk, introducing what he referred to as the "domino principle", which eventually became the concept of domino theory. During the Korean War, the conflict in Vietnam
Vietnam
was also seen as part of a broader proxy war with China
China
and the USSR in Asia. US Navy assistance (1951–1954)[edit]

Bois Belleau (aka USS Belleau Wood) transferred to France
France
in 1953

The USS Windham Bay delivered Grumman F8F Bearcat
F8F Bearcat
fighter aircraft to Saigon
Saigon
on January 26, 1951.[103] On March 2 of that year, the United States
United States
Navy transferred the USS Agenor (ARL-3) (LST 490) to the French Navy in Indochina in accordance with the MAAG-led MAP. Renamed RFS Vulcain (A-656), she was used in Operation Hirondelle in 1953. The USS Sitkoh Bay carrier delivered Grumman F8F Bearcat
F8F Bearcat
aircraft to Saigon
Saigon
on March 26, 1951. During September 1953, the USS Belleau Wood (renamed Bois Belleau) was lent to France
France
and sent to French Indochina
French Indochina
to replace the Arromanches. She was used to support delta defenders in the Hạ Long Bay operation in May 1954. In August, she joined the Franco-American evacuation operation called "Passage to Freedom". The same month, the United States
United States
delivered additional aircraft, again using the USS Windham Bay.[104] On April 18, 1954, during the siege of Dien Bien Phu, the USS Saipan delivered 25 Korean War
Korean War
AU-1 Corsair aircraft for use by the French Aeronavale in supporting the besieged garrison. US Air Force assistance (1952–1954)[edit]

A 1952 F4U-7 Corsair of the 14.F flotilla who fought at Dien Bien Phu

A total of 94 F4U-7s were built for the Aéronavale in 1952, with the last of the batch, the final Corsair built, rolled out in December 1952. The F4U-7s were actually purchased by the U.S. Navy and passed on to the Aéronavale through the U.S. Military Assistance Program (MAP). They were supplemented by 25 ex-U.S.MC AU-1s (previously used in the Korean War) and moved from Yokosuka, Japan, to Tourane Air Base (Da Nang), Vietnam, in April 1952. US Air Force assistance followed in November 1953 when the French commander in Indochina, General Henri Navarre, asked General Chester E. McCarty, commander of the Combat Cargo Division, for 12 Fairchild C-119s for Operation Castor
Operation Castor
at Dien Bien Phu. The USAF also provided C-124 Globemasters to transport French paratroop reinforcements to Indochina. Under the codename Project Swivel Chair,[105] on March 3, 1954, twelve C-119s of the 483rd Troop Carrier Wing ("Packet Rats") based at Ashiya, Japan, were painted with France's insignia and loaned to France
France
with 24 CIA pilots for short-term use. Maintenance was carried out by the US Air Force and airlift operations were commanded by McCarty.[102] Central Intelligence Agency
Central Intelligence Agency
covert operations (1954)[edit]

French-marked USAF C-119 flown by CIA pilots over Dien Bien Phu in 1954

Twenty four Central Intelligence Agency
Central Intelligence Agency
(Civil Air Transport) pilots supplied the French Union
French Union
garrison during the siege of Dien Bien Phu by airlifting paratroopers, ammunition, artillery pieces, tons of barbed wire, medics and other military materiel. With the reducing Drop zone
Drop zone
areas, night operations and anti-aircraft artillery assaults, many of the "packets" fell into Viet Minh
Viet Minh
hands. The 37 CIA pilots completed 682 airdrops under anti-aircraft fire between March 13 and May 6. Two CAT pilots, Wallace Bufford and James B. McGovern, Jr. were killed in action when their Fairchild C-119 Flying Boxcar
C-119 Flying Boxcar
was shot down on May 6, 1954.[102] On February 25, 2005, the French ambassador to the United States, Jean-David Levitte, awarded the seven remaining CIA pilots the Légion d'honneur.[102] Operation Passage to Freedom
Operation Passage to Freedom
(1954)[edit] Main article: Operation Passage to Freedom In August 1954, in support to the French navy and the merchant navy, the U.S. Navy launched Operation Passage to Freedom
Operation Passage to Freedom
and sent hundreds of ships, including USS Montague, in order to evacuate non-communist—especially Catholic—Vietnamese refugees from North Vietnam
Vietnam
following the July 20, 1954, armistice and partition of Vietnam. Up to 1 million Vietnamese civilians were transported from North to South during this period,[106] with around one tenth of that number moving in the opposite direction. Popular culture[edit]

French Indochina
French Indochina
medal, law of August 1, 1953

Although a kind of taboo in France, "the dirty war" has been featured in various films, books and songs. Since its declassification in the 2000s, television documentaries have been released using new perspectives about the U.S. covert involvement and open critics about the French propaganda used during wartime. The famous Communist propagandist Roman Karmen
Roman Karmen
was in charge of the media exploitation of the battle of Dien Bien Phu. In his documentary, Vietnam
Vietnam
(Вьетнам, 1955), he staged the famous scene with the raising of the Viet Minh
Viet Minh
flag over de Castries' bunker which is similar to the one he staged over the Berlin Reichstag roof during World War II
World War II
(Берлин, 1945) and the "S"-shaped POW column marching after the battle, where he used the same optical technique he experimented with before when he staged the German prisoners after the Siege of Leningrad
Siege of Leningrad
(Ленинград в борьбе, 1942) and the Battle of Moscow
Battle of Moscow
(Разгром немецких войск под Москвой, 1942).[107][108] Hollywood made a film about Dien Bien Phu in 1955, Jump into Hell, directed by David Butler and scripted by Irving Wallace, before his fame as a bestselling novelist. Hollywood also made several films about the war, Robert Florey's Rogues' Regiment (1948). Samuel Fuller's China
China
Gate (1957). and James Clavell's Five Gates to Hell (1959). The first French movie about the war, Shock Patrol (Patrouille de Choc) aka Patrol Without Hope (Patrouille Sans Espoir) by Claude Bernard-Aubert, came out in 1956. The French censor cut some violent scenes and made the director change the end of his movie which was seen as "too pessismistic".[109] Léo Joannon's film Fort du Fou (Fort of the Mad) /Outpost in Indochina was released in 1963. Another film was The 317th Platoon (La 317ème Section) was released in 1964, it was directed by Indochina War (and siege of Dien Bien Phu) veteran Pierre Schoendoerffer. Schoendoerffer has since become a media specialist about the Indochina War and has focused his production on realistic war movies. He was cameraman for the army ("Cinematographic Service of the Armies", SCA) during his duty time; moreover, as he had covered the Vietnam
Vietnam
War he released The Anderson Platoon, which won the Academy Award for Documentary Feature. Graham Greene's novel The Quiet American
The Quiet American
takes place during this war. A Vietnamese software developer made a videogame called 7554
7554
after the date of Battle of Dien Bien Phu
Battle of Dien Bien Phu
to commemorate the First Indochina War from the Vietnamese point of view. See also[edit]

My Trach Massacre Hélie Denoix de Saint Marc Japanese invasion of French Indochina Franco-Thai War Japanese coup d'état in French Indochina Indochina Wars North Vietnamese invasion of Laos Second Indochina War Third Indochina War Cambodian–Vietnamese War Pathet Lao United Issarak Front

Notes[edit]

^ Jacques Dalloz, La Guerre d'Indochine 1945–1954, Seuil, Paris, 1987, pp. 129–130, 206 ^ Jacques Dalloz (1987). La Guerre d'Indochine 1945–1954. Paris: Seuil. pp. 129–130.  ^ Kiernan, Ben. How Pol Pot Came to Power. London: Verso, 1985. p. 80 ^ a b henrisalvador. " John Foster Dulles
John Foster Dulles
on the fall of Dien Bien Phu". Dailymotion. Retrieved August 19, 2015.  ^ a b "Viện trợ của Trung Quốc đối với cuộc kháng chiến chống Pháp của Việt Nam". Archived from the original on December 2, 2013. Retrieved August 19, 2015.  ^ http://geb.uni-giessen.de/geb/volltexte/2013/9311/pdf/DaoDucThuan_2013_02_05.pdf ^ " East Germany
East Germany
– The National People's Army and the Third World".  ^ Radvanyi, Janos (1980). " Vietnam
Vietnam
War Diplomacy: Reflections of a Former Iron Curtain
Iron Curtain
Official" (PDF). Paramaters: Journal of the US Army War College. Carlise Barracks, Pennsylvania. 10 (3): 8–15. ^ "CNN.com – France
France
honors CIA pilots – Feb 28, 2005". Retrieved August 19, 2015.  ^ Lee Lanning, Michael (2008). Inside the VC and the NVA. : Texas A&M University Press. p. 119. ISBN 978-1-60344-059-2.  ^ Crozier, Brian (2005). Political Victory: The Elusive Prize Of Military Wars. Transaction. p. 47. ISBN 978-0-7658-0290-3.  ^ Fall, Street Without Joy, p. 63. ^ Logevall, Fredrik (2012). Embers of War: the fall of an empire and the making of America's Vietnam. Random House. pp. 596–9. ISBN 978-0-375-75647-4.  ^ Windrow 1998, p. 23 ^ Ford, Dan. "Japanese soldiers with the Viet Minh".  ^ Windrow, Martin (1998). The French Indochina
French Indochina
War 1946–1954 (Men-At-Arms, 322). London: Osprey Publishing. p. 11. ISBN 1-85532-789-9.  ^ Fall, Bernard, The Two Vietnams (1963) ^ Eckhardt, William, in World Military and Social Expenditures 1987-88 (12th ed., 1987) by Ruth Leger Sivard. ^ Clodfelter, Michael, Vietnam
Vietnam
in Military Statistics (1995) ^ Stanley Kutler: Encyclopedia of the Vietnam
Vietnam
War (1996) ^ Chuyên đề 4 CÔNG TÁC TÌM KIẾM, QUY TẬP HÀI CỐT LIỆT SĨ TỪ NAY ĐẾN NĂM 2020 VÀ NHỮNG NĂM TIẾP THEO, datafile.chinhsachquandoi.gov.vn/Quản%20lý%20chỉ%20đạo/Chuyên%20đề%204.doc ^ Pierre Vermeren (2015). Le Choc des décolonisations: De la guerre d’Algérie aux printemps arabes. Éditions Odile Jacob. p. 16. ISBN 978-2-7381-6477-3.  ^ [1] ^ Dommen, Arthur J. (2001), The Indochinese Experience of the French and the Americans, Indiana University Press, pg. 252 ^ T. Lomperis, From People's War to People's Rule (1996) ^ a b Clodfelter, Michael, Vietnam
Vietnam
in Military Statistics (1995) ^ S. Karnow, Vietnam : a History (1983) ^ Smedberg, M (2008), Vietnamkrigen: 1880–1980. Historiska Media, p. 88 ^ Eckhardt, William, in World Military and Social Expenditures 1987–88 (12th ed., 1987) by Ruth Leger Sivard. ^ a b Dommen, Arthur J. (2001), The Indochinese Experience of the French and the Americans, Indiana University Press, pg. 252. ^ s:Page:Pentagon-Papers-Part I.djvu/30 ^ Fall, Street Without Joy, p. 17. ^ Edward Rice-Maximin, Accommodation and Resistance: The French Left, Indochina, and the Cold War, 1944–1954 (Greenwood, 1986). ^ Flitton, Dave. "Battlefield Vietnam
Vietnam
– Dien Bien Phu, the legacy". Public Broadcasting System PBS. Retrieved 29 July 2015.  ^ Tuchman 1985, p. 235 ^ Tuchman 1985, p. 237 ^ "Interview with Carleton Swift, 1981". Open Vault. Retrieved October 15, 2016.  ^ a b Stuart-Fox, Martin (1997). A History of Laos. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.  ^ Stanley Karnow, Vietnam: A History, (New York: Penguin Books Ltd., 1997), 146 ^ "WGBH Open Vault – Interview with Archimedes L. A. Patti, 1981". Retrieved 2015-08-19.  ^ "ベトナム独立戦争参加日本人の事跡に基づく日越のあり方に関する研究" (PDF). 井川 一久. Tokyo foundation. October 2005. Retrieved 2010-06-10.  ^ "日越関係発展の方途を探る研究 ヴェトナム独立戦争参加日本人―その実態と日越両国にとっての歴史的意味―" (PDF). 井川 一久. Tokyo foundation. May 2006. Retrieved 2010-06-10.  ^ Allies Reinforce Java
Java
and Saigon, British Paramount News rushes, 1945 ^ a b Philipe Leclerc de Hauteloque (1902–1947), La légende d'un héro, Christine Levisse-Touzé, Tallandier/Paris Musées, 2002 ^ Text of Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers General Order no. One, Taiwan Documents Project, http://www.taiwandocuments.org/surrender05.htm[permanent dead link] ^ Hugh Dyson Walker (November 2012). East Asia: A New History. AuthorHouse. pp. 621–. ISBN 978-1-4772-6516-1.  ^ Peter Neville (2007). Britain in Vietnam: prelude to disaster, 1945-6. Psychology Press. p. 119. ISBN 0-415-35848-5. Retrieved 2010-11-28.  ^ Van Nguyen Duong (2008). The tragedy of the Vietnam
Vietnam
War: a South Vietnamese officer's analysis. McFarland. p. 21. ISBN 0-7864-3285-3. Retrieved 2010-11-28.  ^ Stein Tønnesson (2010). Vietnam
Vietnam
1946: how the war began. University of California Press. p. 41. ISBN 0-520-25602-6. Retrieved 2010-11-28.  ^ Elizabeth Jane Errington (1990). Elizabeth Jane Errington; B. J. C. McKercher, eds. The Vietnam
Vietnam
War as history. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 63. ISBN 0-275-93560-4. Retrieved 2010-11-28.  ^ "The Vietnam
Vietnam
War Seeds of Conflict 1945–1960". The History Place. 1999. Retrieved 2010-12-28.  ^ Tucker, Spencer C. (2000). Encyclopedia of the Vietnam
Vietnam
War: A Political, Social and Military History. Santa Barbara, Californiap. p 443. ^ Currey, Cecil B. (1999). Victory at Any Cost: the genius of Viet Nam's Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap. Washington D.C.: Brassey. p 120. ^ Michael C. Howard; Kim Be Howard (2002). Textiles of the Daic Peoples of Vietnam. White Lotus Press. p. 46. ISBN 978-974-7534-97-9.  ^ Windrow 2004, p. 90 ^ Barnet, Richard J. (1968). Intervention and Revolution: The United States in the Third World. World Publishing. p. 185. ISBN 0-529-02014-9.  ^ Sheehan, Neil (1988). A Bright Shining Lie. New York: Random House. p. 155. ISBN 0-394-48447-9.  ^ Cirillo, Roger (2015). The Shape of Battles to Come. Louisville: University Press of Kentucky. p. 187. ISBN 978-0813165752.  ^ Trận then chốt Đông Khê Archived November 5, 2014, at the Wayback Machine.. 02 November, 2014. ^ Gras, Yves (1979). Histoire de la Guerre d'Indochine. Paris. p. 408. ISBN 2-259-00478-4.  ^ a b "La Guerre En Indochine" (video). newsreel. October 26, 1950. Retrieved May 20, 2007.  ^ a b "Bigeard et Dien Bien Phu" (video). TV news. Channel 2 (France). May 3, 2004. Retrieved May 20, 2007.  ^ "dienbienphu.org". Archived from the original on October 24, 2003.  ^ Assemblée Nationale. "Le Gouvernement provisoire et la Quatrième République (1944–1958)".  ^ The Pentagon Papers (1971), Beacon Press, vol. 3, p. 134. ^ The Pentagon Papers (1971), Beacon Press, vol. 3, p. 119. ^ a b The Pentagon Papers (1971), Beacon Press, vol. 3, p. 140. ^ a b c d e Hercombe, Peter (2004). "Dien Bien Phu, Chronicles of a Forgotten Battle". documentary. Transparences Productions/Channel 2 (France). Archived from the original on March 21, 2007.  ^ "France's war against Communists rages on" (video). newsreel. News Magazine of the Screen/Warner Bros. May 1952. Retrieved May 20, 2007.  ^ A Bernard Fall Retrospective, presentation of Bernard B. Fall, Vietnam
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Witness 1953–56, New York, Praeger, 1966, by the Ludwig von Mises Institute ^ a b Ruscio, Alain (August 2, 2003). "Guerre d'Indochine: Libérez Henri Martin" (in French). l'Humanité. Archived from the original on August 4, 2003. Retrieved May 20, 2007.  ^ Nhu Tang, Truong (March 12, 1986). "A Vietcong Memoir: An Inside Account of the Vietnam
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War and Its Aftermath". Vintage. Retrieved June 27, 2007.  ^ a b c " France
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History, IV Republic (1946–1958)" (in French). Quid Encyclopedia. Archived from the original on August 30, 2007. Retrieved May 20, 2007.  ^ Patrick Pesnot, Rendez-vous Avec X – Dien Bien Phu Archived October 14, 2007, at the Wayback Machine., France
France
Inter, December 4, 2004 (Rendez-vous With X broadcast on public station France
France
Inter) ^ "We wanted a newspaper to tell what we wanted" interview by Denis Jeambar & Roland Mihail Archived October 1, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. ^ General Challe's appeal (April 22, 1961) ^ "Accueil". Retrieved August 19, 2015.  ^ "USS Skagit and Operation Passage To Freedom". self-published. Archived from the original on October 27, 2009. Retrieved May 20, 2007. CS1 maint: Unfit url (link) ^ https://books.google.com.vn/books?id=MauWlUjuWNsC&pg=PA252&dq=The+Indochinese+Experience+of+the+French+and+the+Americans+100,000+to+150,000&hl=vi&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjt-L-o-9bQAhXFqo8KHZq-A58Q6AEIGTAA#v=onepage&q=The%20Indochinese%20Experience%20of%20the%20French%20and%20the%20Americans%20100%2C000%20to%20150%2C000&f=false ^ http://indochine.uqam.ca/en/historical-dictionary/1420-torture-french.html ^ http://www.nguoiduatin.vn/nhan-chung-song-sot-ke-chuyen-vu-tham-sat-cat-bay-kinh-hoang-a78313.html ^ http://www.bentre.gov.vn/Pages/GioiThieu.aspx?ID=1837&CategoryId=Di+t%u00edch&InitialTabId=Ribbon.Read ^ Alf Andrew Heggoy and Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in Algeria, Bloomington, Indiana, Indiana University Press, 1972, p.175 ^ The 317th Platoons script Archived June 14, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. ^ Original audio recordings of General de Castries (Dien Bien Phu) and General Cogny (Hanoi) transmissions on May 7, 1954, during the battle of Dien Bien Phu (from the European Navigator based in Luxembourg) ^ French Defense Ministry archives, ECPAD Archived September 14, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. ^ Raymond Muelle; Éric Deroo (1992). Services spéciaux, armes, techniques, missions: GCMA, Indochine, 1950–1954 ... Editions Crépin-Leblond. ISBN 978-2-7030-0100-3.  ^ Michel David (2002). Guerre secrète en Indochine: Les maquis autochtones face au Viêt-Minh (1950–1955). ISBN 978-2-7025-0636-3.  ^ Dien Bien Phu – Le Rapport Secret, Patrick Jeudy, TF1 Video, 2005 ^ French Defense Ministry archives Archived September 15, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. ^ French Defense Ministry archives Archived September 14, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. ^ French Defense Ministry archives Archived September 16, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. ^ Dr. Jacques Cheneau in In Vietnam, 1954. Eight episode ^ a b Goscha 2008, pp. 46–49 ^ a b Goscha 2008, pp. 50–55 ^ Igawa, Sei (2005-10-10). "Japan- Vietnam
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Beijing published in Communisme magazine and the Pierre Renouvin Institute of Paris, July 20, 2004. ^ French Defense Ministry archives Archived September 14, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. ^ "Replacing France: The Origins of American Intervention in Vietnam" (PDF). book. University Press of Kentucky. July 2007. Retrieved June 28, 2007.  ^ a b c d "U.S. Pilots Honored For Indochina Service" (PDF). Embassy of France
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References[edit]

Buttinger, Joseph (1972). A Dragon Defiant: A Short History of Vietnam. New York: Praeger. OCLC 583077932.  Chaliand, Gérard (1982). Guerrilla Strategies: An Historical Anthology from the Long March to Afghanistan. California: University of California Press. ISBN 0-520-04443-6.  Jian, Chen (1993). " China
China
and the First Indo- China
China
War, 1950–54". The China
China
Quarterly. London: School of Oriental and African Studies. 133 (March): 85–110. doi:10.1017/s0305741000018208. ISSN 0305-7410.  Cogan, Charles G. (2000). "L'attitude des États-Unis à l'égard de la guerre d'Indochine". In Vaïsse, Maurice. Armée française dans la guerre d'Indochine (1946–1954). Bruxelles: Complexe. pp. 51–88. ISBN 2-87027-810-1.  Conboy, Kenneth; Morrison, James (1995). Shadow War: The CIA's Secret War in Laos. Boulder, CO: Paladin Press. ISBN 978-1-58160-535-8.  Devillers, Philippe; Lacouture, Jean (1969). End of a War: Indochina, 1954. New York: Praeger. OCLC 575650635.  Dunstan, Simon (2004). Vietnam
Vietnam
Tracks: Armor in Battle 1945–75. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 1-84176-833-2.  Fall, Bernard B. (1967). Hell in a Very Small Place: The Siege of Dien Bien Phu. Philadelphia: Lippincott. OCLC 551565485.  Fall, Bernard B (1994). Street Without Joy. Stackpole Books. ISBN 0-8117-1700-3.  Fall, Bernard B. (1963). The Two Viet-Nams: A Political and Military Analysis. New York: Praeger. OCLC 582302330.  Giap, Vo Nguyen (1971). The Military Art of People's War. New York: Modern Reader. ISBN 0-85345-193-1.  Goscha, Christopher E (2008). "Chapter 3 Belated Asian Allies: The Technical and Military Contributions of Japanese Deserters, (1945–50)". In Young, Marilyn B; Buzzanco, Robert. A Companion to the Vietnam
Vietnam
War. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 9781405172042.  Hammer, Ellen Joy (1954). The Struggle for Indochina. Stanford: Stanford University Press. OCLC 575892787.  Humphries, James. F (1999). Through the Valley: Vietnam, 1967–1968. Lynne Rienner Publishers. ISBN 1-55587-821-0.  Perkins, Mandaley (2006). Hanoi, Adieu: A Bittersweet Memoir of French Indochina. Sydney: Harper Perennial. ISBN 978-0-7322-8197-7.  Roy, Jules (1963). The Battle of Dienbienphu. New York: Pyramid Books. OCLC 613204239.  Summers, Harry G. (1995). Historical Atlas of the Vietnam
Vietnam
War. New York: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 0-395-72223-3.  Thi, Lam Quang (2002). The Twenty-Five Year Century: A South Vietnamese General Remembers the Indochina War to the Fall of Saigon. University of North Texas. ISBN 1-57441-143-8.  Tuchman, Barbara Wertheim (1985). The march of folly: from Troy to Vietnam. Random House, Inc. ISBN 0-345-30823-9. Retrieved 2010-11-28.  Vaïsse; editor (2000). L'Armée française dans la guerre d'Indochine (1946–1954). Paris: Editions Complexe. ISBN 978-2-87027-810-9.  Wiest, Andrew; editor (2006). Rolling Thunder in a Gentle Land. Oxford: Osphrey. ISBN 978-1-84603-020-8.  Windrow, Martin (1998). The French Indochina
French Indochina
War, 1946–1954. Osprey. ISBN 1-85532-789-9.  Windrow, Martin (2004). The Last Valley. Weidenfeld and Nicolson. ISBN 0-306-81386-6. 

Further reading[edit]

Pescali, Piergiorgio (2010). Indocina. Bologna: Emil. ISBN 978-88-96026-42-7. 

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to First Indochina War.

Pentagon Papers, Chapter 2 Vietnam: The Impossible War Fall, Bernard B. Street Without Joy: The French Debacle In Indochina ANAPI's official website (National Association of Former POWs in Indochina) Hanoi
Hanoi
upon the army's return in victory (bicycles demystified) Viet Nam Portal Photos about the First War of Indochina (French Defense Archives) (ECPAD) (in French)

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Bengal famine of 1943 Chinese famine of 1942–43 Greek Famine of 1941-1944 Dutch famine of 1944–45 Vietnamese Famine of 1945

Air warfare of World War II Blitzkrieg Comparative military ranks Cryptography Diplomacy Home front

United States Australian United Kingdom

Lend-Lease Manhattan Project Military awards Military equipment Military production Nazi plunder Opposition Technology

Allied cooperation

Total war Strategic bombing Puppet states Women Art and World War II

Aftermath

Expulsion of Germans Operation Paperclip Operation Osoaviakhim Operation Keelhaul Occupation of Germany Territorial changes of Germany Soviet occupations

Romania Poland Hungary Baltic States

Occupation of Japan First Indochina War Indonesian National Revolution Cold War Decolonization Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany Popular culture

War crimes

Allied war crimes

Soviet war crimes British war crimes United States
United States
war crimes

German (Forced labour) / Wehrmacht war crimes

Holocaust Aftermath Response Prosecution

Italian war crimes Japanese war crimes

Unit 731 Prosecution

Croatian war crimes

against the Serbs against the Jews

Romanian war crimes

Wartime sexual violence

German military brothels Camp brothels Rape during the occupation of Japan Sook Ching Comfort women Rape of Nanking Rape of Manila Rape during the occupation of Germany Rape during the liberation of France Rape during the liberation of Poland

Prisoners

Finnish prisoners of war in the Soviet Union German prisoners of war in the Soviet Union German prisoners of war in the United States Italian prisoners of war in the Soviet Union Japanese prisoners of war in the Soviet Union Japanese prisoners of war in World War II German mistreatment of Soviet prisoners of war Polish prisoners of war in the Soviet Union Romanian prisoners of war in the Soviet Union Soviet prisoners of war in Finland

Bibliography Category Portal

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French Indochina

Background

France–Asia relations French colonial empire France– Vietnam
Vietnam
relations France– Thailand
Thailand
relations France– China
China
relations

Constituent territories

Cochinchina Tonkin Annam Cambodia Laos Guangzhouwan Provisional Central Government of Vietnam State of Vietnam

Events

French assistance to Nguyễn Ánh
French assistance to Nguyễn Ánh
(1777–1820) Lê Văn Khôi revolt
Lê Văn Khôi revolt
(1833–35) Bombardment of Tourane
Bombardment of Tourane
(1847) Siege of Tourane
Siege of Tourane
(1858) Cochinchina campaign (1858–62) Tonkin
Tonkin
Campaign (1883–1886) Sino-French War
Sino-French War
(1884–1885) Pacification of Tonkin Franco-Siamese War
Franco-Siamese War
(1893) Holy Man's Rebellion (1901-1936) World War I 1916 Cochinchina uprising Thái Nguyên uprising War of the Insane Bazin assassination Yên Bái mutiny World War II French–Thai War (1940–1941) Japanese invasion of French Indochina Japanese coup d'état in French Indochina August Revolution Proclamation of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam First Indochina War Battle of Dien Bien Phu Partition of Vietnam

Treaties

Treaty of Versailles (1787) Treaty of Saigon
Saigon
(1862) Treaty of Huế (1863) Second Treaty of Saigon
Saigon
(1874) Treaty of Huế (1883) Geneva Conference (1954)

French personalities

Alexandre de Rhodes Pierre Pigneau de Behaine Jean-Baptiste Chaigneau Jean-Baptiste Cécille Charles de Montigny Charles Rigault de Genouilly Amédée Courbet Henri Rivière Francis Garnier Ernest Doudart de Lagrée Auguste Pavie Albert Sarraut

Organisations

Paris Foreign Missions Society Tirailleurs indochinois Tonkin
Tonkin
Expeditionary Corps Tonkinese Rifles Governor-General of French Indochina

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French colonial conflicts

16th–17th centuries

Brazil (1557–60) Florida (1562–65) Brazil (1612–15) Morocco
Morocco
(1629) Beaver Wars
Beaver Wars
(1641–1701) French colonization of Texas
French colonization of Texas
(1685–89) Siam (1688) King William's War
King William's War
(1689–97)

18th century

Queen Anne's War
Queen Anne's War
(1702–13) Chickasaw Wars
Chickasaw Wars
(1721–52) Dummer's War
Dummer's War
(1721–25) Burma– France
France
relations (1729–56) King George's War
King George's War
(1744–48) First Carnatic War
First Carnatic War
(1746–48) Second Carnatic War (1749–54) Nova Scotia (1749–55) French and Indian War
French and Indian War
(1754–60) East Indies (1757–63) Larache expedition
Larache expedition
1765 Vietnam
Vietnam
(1777–1820) North America (1778–83) Caribbean and East Indies (1778–83) Haitian Revolution
Haitian Revolution
(1791–1804) Siege of Pondicherry (1793) French acquisition of Santo Domingo (1795–1809) French campaign in Egypt and Syria
French campaign in Egypt and Syria
(1798–1801)

19th century

West Indies (1804–10) Indian Ocean (1809–11) Java
Java
(1811) Algeria (1830–47) Algeria (1835–1903) Río de la Plata (1838–40) Mexico (1838–39) Argentina–Uruguay (1845–50) Morocco
Morocco
(1844) Philippines (1844–45) Bombardment of Tourane
Bombardment of Tourane
Vietnam
Vietnam
(1847) Franco-Tahitian War
Franco-Tahitian War
(1844–47) French conquest of Senegal
French conquest of Senegal
(1854) Cochinchina Campaign
Cochinchina Campaign
(1858–62) Second Opium War
Second Opium War
(1860) Intervention in Mexico (1861–67) Japan
Japan
(1863–64) Korea (1866) North Vietnam
Vietnam
(1873–74) Tunisia
Tunisia
(1881) Madagascar
Madagascar
(1883) Ivory Coast (1883–98) Tonkin
Tonkin
Campaign (1883–86) Sino-French War
Sino-French War
(1884–85) North Vietnam
Vietnam
(1886–96) Leewards War
Leewards War
(1888–97) First Franco-Dahomean War (1890) Second Franco-Dahomean War
Second Franco-Dahomean War
(1892–94) Franco-Siamese War
Franco-Siamese War
(1893) Second Madagascar
Madagascar
expedition (1895) Voulet–Chanoine Mission
Voulet–Chanoine Mission
(1898)

20th century

Boxer Rebellion
Boxer Rebellion
(1901) Holy Man's Rebellion (1901-36) Ouaddai War (1909–11) Morocco
Morocco
(1911) Zaian War
Zaian War
(1914-1921) Volta-Bani War
Volta-Bani War
(1915-1916) Kaocen Revolt
Kaocen Revolt
(1916-1917) Syria (1919–21) Cilicia (1920–21) Rif War
Rif War
(1920–26) Kongo-Wara rebellion (1928–31) Franco-Thai War
Franco-Thai War
(1940–41) Indochina (1945) South Vietnam
Vietnam
(1945–46) First Indochina War
First Indochina War
(1946–54) Malagasy Uprising
Malagasy Uprising
(1947–48) Tunisian independence
Tunisian independence
(1952–56) Algerian War
Algerian War
(1954–62) Suez Crisis
Suez Crisis
(1956) Ifni War
Ifni War
(1957–58) Cameroonian Independence War (1955-1960) Bizerte
Bizerte
crisis (1961) Ouvéa cave hostage taking (1988)

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Vietnamese independence movement

Events

Bombardment of Tourane Siege of Saigon Capture of the Citadel of Saigon Conquest of Cochinchina Ba Dinh uprising / Cần Vương Pacification of Tonkin Hanoi
Hanoi
Poison Plot World War I 1916 Cochinchina uprising Thái Nguyên uprising Bazin assassination Yên Bái mutiny Nghệ-Tĩnh Soviets World War II 1940 Cochinchina uprising Japanese coup d'état in French Indochina August Revolution Proclamation of Independence of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam First Indochina War Battle of Dien Bien Phu Geneva Conference

Organisations

Cần Vương Đông Du Duy Tân
Duy Tân
hội Empire of Vietnam Nguyễn dynasty Tonkin
Tonkin
Free School Việt Nam Quang Phục Hội Vietnamese Revolutionary Youth League Việt Nam Quốc Dân Đảng Viet Minh Communist Party of Vietnam

Revolutionaries

Cường Để Đinh Công Tráng Ho Chi Minh Huỳnh Thúc Kháng Lương Văn Can Ngô Đức Kế Nguyễn An Ninh Nguyễn Quang Bích Nguyễn Quyền Nguyễn Thái Học Nguyễn Thần Hiến Nguyễn Thành Nguyễn Thiện Thuật Nguyễn Thượng Hiền Nguyễn Trung Trực Nguyen Xuan On Phạm Bành Phan Bội Châu Phan Chu Trinh Phan Đình Phùng Phan Thanh Giản Phan Xích Long Tạ Thu Thâu Tôn Thất Thuyết Trần Cao Vân Trương Định Vũ Hồng Khanh

Emperors

Tự Đức Hàm Nghi Thành Thái Duy Tân Bảo Đại

French rulers

Albert Sarraut Jean Decoux French Indochina

Governor-General

Collaborators

Hoàng Cao Khải Trần Bá Lộc

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20th century in Vietnam

World War I

Interwar

World War II

First Indochina War

Vietnam
Vietnam
War

Subsidy phase

Đổi Mới

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Cold War

USA USSR ANZUS NATO Non-Aligned Movement SEATO Warsaw Pact Cold War
Cold War
II

1940s

Morgenthau Plan Hukbalahap Rebellion Dekemvriana Percentages Agreement Yalta Conference Guerrilla war in the Baltic states

Forest Brothers Operation Priboi Operation Jungle Occupation of the Baltic states

Cursed soldiers Operation Unthinkable Operation Downfall Potsdam Conference Gouzenko Affair Division of Korea Operation Masterdom Operation Beleaguer Operation Blacklist Forty Iran crisis of 1946 Greek Civil War Baruch Plan Corfu Channel incident Turkish Straits crisis Restatement of Policy on Germany First Indochina War Truman Doctrine Asian Relations Conference May 1947 Crises Marshall Plan Comecon 1948 Czechoslovak coup d'état Tito–Stalin Split Berlin Blockade Western betrayal Iron Curtain Eastern Bloc Western Bloc Chinese Civil War
Chinese Civil War
(Second round) Malayan Emergency Albanian Subversion

1950s

Papua conflict Bamboo Curtain Korean War McCarthyism Egyptian Revolution of 1952 1953 Iranian coup d'état Uprising of 1953 in East Germany Dirty War
Dirty War
(Mexico) Bricker Amendment 1954 Guatemalan coup d'état Partition of Vietnam Vietnam
Vietnam
War First Taiwan Strait Crisis Geneva Summit (1955) Bandung Conference Poznań 1956 protests Hungarian Revolution of 1956 Suez Crisis "We will bury you" Operation Gladio Arab Cold War

Syrian Crisis of 1957 1958 Lebanon crisis Iraqi 14 July Revolution

Sputnik crisis Second Taiwan Strait Crisis 1959 Tibetan uprising Cuban Revolution Kitchen Debate Sino-Soviet split

1960s

Congo Crisis 1960 U-2 incident Bay of Pigs Invasion 1960 Turkish coup d'état Soviet–Albanian split Berlin Crisis of 1961 Berlin Wall Portuguese Colonial War

Angolan War of Independence Guinea-Bissau War of Independence Mozambican War of Independence

Cuban Missile Crisis Sino-Indian War Communist insurgency in Sarawak Iraqi Ramadan Revolution Eritrean War of Independence Sand War North Yemen Civil War Aden Emergency 1963 Syrian coup d'état Vietnam
Vietnam
War Shifta War Guatemalan Civil War Colombian conflict Nicaraguan Revolution 1964 Brazilian coup d'état Dominican Civil War South African Border War Transition to the New Order Domino theory ASEAN Declaration Laotian Civil War 1966 Syrian coup d'état Argentine Revolution Korean DMZ conflict Greek military junta of 1967–74 Years of Lead (Italy) USS Pueblo incident Six-Day War War of Attrition Dhofar Rebellion Al-Wadiah War Protests of 1968 French May Tlatelolco massacre Cultural Revolution Prague Spring 1968 Polish political crisis Communist insurgency in Malaysia Invasion of Czechoslovakia Iraqi Ba'athist Revolution Goulash Communism Sino-Soviet border conflict CPP–NPA–NDF rebellion Corrective Move

1970s

Détente Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Black September
Black September
in Jordan Corrective Movement (Syria) Cambodian Civil War Koza riot Realpolitik Ping-pong diplomacy Ugandan-Tanzanian War 1971 Turkish military memorandum Corrective Revolution (Egypt) Four Power Agreement on Berlin Bangladesh Liberation War 1972 Nixon visit to China North Yemen-South Yemen Border conflict of 1972 Yemenite War of 1972 NDF Rebellion Eritrean Civil Wars 1973 Chilean coup d'état Yom Kippur War 1973 oil crisis Carnation Revolution Spanish transition Metapolitefsi Strategic Arms Limitation Talks Rhodesian Bush War Angolan Civil War Mozambican Civil War Oromo conflict Ogaden War Ethiopian Civil War Lebanese Civil War Sino-Albanian split Cambodian–Vietnamese War Sino-Vietnamese War Operation Condor Dirty War
Dirty War
(Argentina) 1976 Argentine coup d'état Korean Air Lines Flight 902 Yemenite War of 1979 Grand Mosque seizure Iranian Revolution Saur Revolution New Jewel Movement 1979 Herat uprising Seven Days to the River Rhine Struggle against political abuse of psychiatry in the Soviet Union

1980s

Soviet–Afghan War 1980 and 1984 Summer Olympics boycotts 1980 Turkish coup d'état Peruvian conflict Casamance conflict Ugandan Bush War Lord's Resistance Army insurgency Eritrean Civil Wars 1982 Ethiopian–Somali Border War Ndogboyosoi War United States
United States
invasion of Grenada Able Archer 83 Star Wars Iran–Iraq War Somali Rebellion 1986 Black Sea incident 1988 Black Sea bumping incident South Yemen Civil War Bougainville Civil War 8888 Uprising Solidarity

Soviet reaction

Contras Central American crisis RYAN Korean Air Lines Flight 007 People Power Revolution Glasnost Perestroika Nagorno-Karabakh War Afghan Civil War United States
United States
invasion of Panama 1988 Polish strikes Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 Revolutions of 1989 Fall of the Berlin Wall Velvet Revolution Romanian Revolution Peaceful Revolution Die Wende

1990s

Mongolian Revolution of 1990 German reunification Yemeni unification Fall of communism in Albania Breakup of Yugoslavia Dissolution of the Soviet Union Dissolution of Czechoslovakia

Frozen conflicts

Abkhazia China-Taiwan Korea Nagorno-Karabakh South Ossetia Transnistria Sino-Indian border dispute North Borneo dispute

Foreign policy

Truman Doctrine Containment Eisenhower Doctrine Domino theory Hallstein Doctrine Kennedy Doctrine Peaceful coexistence Ostpolitik Johnson Doctrine Brezhnev Doctrine Nixon Doctrine Ulbricht Doctrine Carter Doctrine Reagan Doctrine Rollback Sovereignty of Puerto Rico during the Cold War

Ideologies

Capitalism

Chicago school Keynesianism Monetarism Neoclassical economics Reaganomics Supply-side economics Thatcherism

Communism

Marxism–Leninism Castroism Eurocommunism Guevarism Hoxhaism Juche Maoism Trotskyism Naxalism Stalinism Titoism

Other

Fascism Islamism Liberal democracy Social democracy Third-Worldism White supremacy Apartheid

Organizations

ASEAN CIA Comecon EEC KGB MI6 Non-Aligned Movement SAARC Safari Club Stasi

Propaganda

Active measures Crusade for Freedom Izvestia Pravda Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Red Scare TASS Voice of America Voice of Russia

Races

Arms race Nuclear arms race Space Race

See also

Allied intervention in the Russian Civil War Soviet espionage in the United States Soviet Union– United States
United States
relations USSR–USA summits Russian espionage in the United States American espionage in the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
and Russian Federation Russia– NATO
NATO
relations Brinkmanship CIA and the Cultural Cold War Cold War
Cold War
II

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