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The war in Vietnam

The Vietnam War (Vietnamese: Chiến tranh Việt Nam), also known as the Second Indochina War, and also known in Vietnam as Resistance War Against America (Vietnamese: Kháng chiến chống Mỹ) or simply the American War, was aCold War-era proxy war that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War (1946–54) and was fought between North Vietnam—supported by the Soviet Union, China and other communist allies—and the government of South Vietnam—supported by the United States and other anti-communist allies. The Viet Cong (also known as the National Liberation Front, or NLF), a South Vietnamese communist common front aided by the North, fought a guerrilla war against anti-communist forces in the region. The People's Army of Vietnam (also known as the North Vietnamese Army) engaged in a more conventional war, at times committing large units to battle.

As the war continued, the part of the Viet Cong in the fighting decreased as the role of the NVA grew. U.S. and South Vietnamese forces relied on air superiority and overwhelming firepower to conduct search and destroy operations, involvingground forces, artillery, and airstrikes. In the course of the war, the U.S. conducted a large-scale strategic bombing campaign against North Vietnam, and over time the North Vietnamese airspace became the most heavily defended in the world.

The U.S. government viewed American involvement in the war as a way to prevent a Communist takeover of South Vietnam. This was part of a wider containment strategy, with the stated aim of stopping the spread of communism. According to the U.S. domino theory, if one state went Communist, other states in the region would follow, and U.S. policy thus held that Communist rule over all of Vietnam was unacceptable. The North Vietnamese government and the Viet Cong were fighting to reunify Vietnam under communist rule. They viewed the conflict as a colonial war, fought initially against forces from France and then America, as France was backed by the U.S., and later against South Vietnam, which it regarded as a U.S. puppet state.











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