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Conor Bulman

The Vietnamese People

Vietnam was invaded by the French in 1859. By the end of the Vietnamese conquest (1888) most Vietnamese were rice farmers. The French separated Vietnam into three different districts for administrative purposes. The capital of the north was Hanoi, the centre capital was Hue and the south capital was Saigon Vietnam at the time was spilt in to the native Vietnamese and the colonial French.

The Effect of WW II on the Vietnam Conflict.

There was a power vacuum left.

The Vietnamese were left with the weapons

The French troops were released without weapons

The Japanese left Vietnam

The Truman Doctrine

President Harry S. Truman presented the Truman Doctrine to congress. It was an anti-communist declaration that would shape American foreign policy for four decades. It committed America to step in and support the Greece government against communist pressure. The same mindset was shown when the communist Vietcong started to fight the democratic government.

Why America Intervened

The Americans invaded Vietnam because they thought the communists were going to win by taking over a country. The ruling class of America pushed for the invasion because communists opposed their very existence. Troops were sent to help bolster the French troops.

The Vietcong
The Peoples Liberation Armed Forces, more commonly known as the Vietcong, was the military arm of the National Liberation Front. They were established at the end of 1960. They were organized in to three different levels, regular forces, full time guerrillas and a part time self defence militia.

Guerrilla Warfare
Guerrilla warfare is used by armies to fight armies that are much bigger than themselves. The term guerrilla comes from a Spanish word meaning little war. It originated from small bands of Spanish soldiers fighting Napoleans army in the peninsular war (1807-1814)

Guerrilla Tactics
The tactics date back to Sun Tzu, the Chinese strategist who lived 2000 years ago. They were adapted by Mao Zedong, the leader of the communist china. The National Liberation Front (NLF) based their tactics on Mao.

The Effect of the peasants

One of the Vietcong's first actions was to gain the favour of the peasants They gained the favour by following a certain set rules. This included working for their food and repairing the houses. The peasants thus helped the Vietcong by hiding them and some even joined them to fight for the future of equality they were promised.

The Cu-Chi Tunnels.

The famous tunnels used by the Vietcong were the Cu-Chi tunnels. They are located approximately 70 KM from Ho Chi Minh city. They were dug in the late 1940s. They allowed the Vietcong to travel must easier then they would above ground.

Weapons used by the Vietcong

Between 1950 and 1960 America supplied south Vietnam with weapons used during the second world war. These included the M-1 Garand, hand grenades, Thompson submachine guns and the M-1 Carbine. The Vietcong largely supplied themselves with stolen south Vietcong weapons.

The CHICOM influence.

The CHICOM were a group of Chinese communists. The CHICOM supplied a small amount of the Vietcongs weapons. Some of the communist issued weapons were SKS Semi-automatic carbines, potato masher style grenades and the well known rocket propelled grenades (RPG)

1) The American War: Vietnam by Jonathan Neale. 2) Battlefield:Vietnam.com 3) Topdocumentary.com/the-cu-chi-tunnels/