Good Morning Vietnam!

  • Ho Chi Minh Declares Vietnamese Independence

    Ho Chi Minh Declares Vietnamese Independence
    Ho Chi Minh declares independence from the French in Vietnam. Creates provisional government.
  • Period: to

    American Involvement in Vietnam

  • First American is Killed in Vietnam

    First American is Killed in Vietnam
    Lt. Col. A. Peter Dewey, head of American OSS mission, was killed by Vietminh troops while driving a jeep to the airport. Reports later indicated that his death was due to a case of mistaken identity -- he had been mistaken for a Frenchman.
  • US Pledges 15 Million Dollars to French

    The United States sends $15 million dollars in military aid to the French for the war in Indochina. Included in the aid package is a military mission and military advisors.
  • Battle of Dien Bein Phu

    Battle of Dien Bein Phu
    A force of 40,000 heavily armed Vietminh lay seige to the French garrison at Dienbienphu. Using Chinese artillery to shell the airstrip, the Vietminh make it impossible for French supplies to arrive by air. It soon becomes clear that the French have met their match.
  • Geneva Convention Peace Talks

    Delegates from nine nations convene in Geneva to start negotiations that will lead to the end of hostilities in Indochina. The idea of partitioning Vietnam is first explored at this forum. Vietminh General Ta Quang Buu and French General Henri Delteil sign the Agreement on the Cessation of Hostilities in Vietnam. As part of the agreement, a provisional demarcation line is drawn at the 17th parallel which will divide Vietnam until nationwide elections are held in 1956. The United States does not
  • French Leave Vietnam

  • US Training South Vietnamese

    The US Military Assistance Advisor Group (MAAG) assumes responsibility, from French, for training South Vietnamese forces.
  • Terrorist Attacks in Saigon

    Terrorist Attacks in Saigon
    Thirteen Americans working for MAAG and US Information Service are wounded in terrorist bombings in Saigon.
  • US Servicemen Killed in Guerilla Attack

    Major Dale R. Buis and Master Sargeant Chester M. Ovnand become the first Americans to die in the Vietnam War when guerillas strike at Bienhoa
  • Kennedy Elected as US President

    Kennedy Elected as US President
  • Vietcong Formed

    Vietcong Formed
    Hanoi forms National Liberation Front for South Vietnam. Diem government dubs them "Vietcong."
  • Vice President Johnson tours Saigon

    Vice President Johnson tours Saigon
    During a tour of Asian countries, Vice President Lyndon Johnson visits Diem in Saigon. Johnson assures Diem that he is crucial to US objectives in Vietnam and calls him "the Churchill of Asia."
  • US Uses Agent Orange

    US Uses Agent Orange
    US Air Force begins using Agent Orange -- a defoliant that came in metal orange containers-to expose roads and trails used by Vietcong forces.
  • Buddhists Protest

    Buddhists Protest
    Tensions between Buddhists and the Diem government are further strained as Diem, a Catholic, removes Buddhists from several key government positions and replaces them with Catholics. Buddhist monks protest Diem's intolerance for other religions and the measures he takes to silence them. In a show of protest, Buddhist monks start setting themselves on fire in public places.
  • Deim Overthrown, Murdered

    Deim Overthrown, Murdered
    With tacit approval of the United States, operatives within the South Vietnamese military overthrow Diem. He and his brother Nhu are shot and killed in the aftermath
  • Gulf of Tonkin Incident

    Gulf of Tonkin Incident
    On August 2, three North Vietnamese PT boats allegedly fire torpedoes at the USS Maddox, a destroyer located in the international waters of the Tonkin Gulf, some thirty miles off the coast of North Vietnam. The attack comes after six months of covert US and South Vietnamese naval operations. A second, even more highly disputed attack, is alleged to have taken place on August 4.
  • Gulf of Tonkin Resolution

    Lyndon B. Johnson & Gulf of Tonkin ResolutionThe Gulf of Tonkin Resolution is approved by Congress on August 7 and authorizes President Lyndon Johnson to "take all necessary measures to repel any armed attack against forces of the United States and to prevent further aggression." The resolution passes unanimously in the House, and by a margin of 82-2 in the Senate. The Resolution allows Johnson to wage all out war against North Vietnam without ever securing a formal Declaration of War from Congress.
  • Period: to

    Operation Rolling Tunder

    Sustained American bombing raids of North Vietnam, dubbed Operation Rolling Thunder, begin in February. The nearly continuous air raids would go on for three years.
  • Marines arrive at DaNang

    Marines arrive at DaNang
    The first American combat troops, the 9th Marine Expeditionary Brigade, arrive in Vietnam to defend the US airfield at Danang. Scattered Vietcong gunfire is reported, but no Marines are injured.
  • Teach Ins

    Teach Ins
    The practice of protesting US policy in Vietnam by holding "teach-ins" at colleges and universities becomes widespread. The first "teach-in" -- featuring seminars, rallies, and speeches -- takes place at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in March. In May, a nationally broadcast "teach-in" reaches students and faculty at over 100 campuses.
  • US Troops in Vietnam= 200,000

  • McNamara Calls Bombing Ineffective

    Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, appearing before a Senate subcommittee, testifies that US bombing raids against North Vietnam have not achieved their objectives. McNamara maintains that movement of supplies to South Vietnam has not been reduced, and neither the economy nor the morale of the North Vietnamese has been broken.
  • Tet Offensive

    Tet Offensive
    In a show of military might that catches the US military off guard, North Vietnamese and Vietcong forces sweep down upon several key cities and provinces in South Vietnam, including its capital, Saigon. Within days, American forces turn back the onslaught and recapture most areas. From a military point of view, Tet is a huge defeat for the Communists, but turns out to be a political and psychological victory. The US military's assessment of the war is questioned and the "end of tunnel" seems ver
  • General Westmoreland requests 206,000 More Troops

  • My Lai Massacre

    My Lai Massacre
    On March 16, the angry and frustrated men of Charlie Company, 11th Brigade, Americal Division entered the village of My Lai. "This is what you've been waiting for -- search and destroy -- and you've got it," said their superior officers. A short time later the killing began. When news of the atrocities surfaced, it sent shockwaves through the US political establishment, the military's chain of command, and an already divided American public.
  • Nixon Elected

  • Operation Breakfast

    Operation Breakfast
    Nixon's secret bombing of Cambodia. In an effort to destroy Communist supply routes and base camps in Cambodia, President Nixon gives the go-ahead to "Operation Breakfast." The covert bombing of Cambodia, conducted without the knowledge of Congress or the American public, will continue for fourteen months.
  • Vietnamization Strategy Announced

    Vietnamization Strategy Announced
    Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird describes a policy of "Vietnamization" when discussing a diminishing role for the US military in Vietnam. The objective of the policy is to shift the burden of defeating the Communists onto the South Vietnamese Army and away from the United States.
  • Kissinger and Le Duc Tho Begin Secret Talks

    Kissinger and Le Duc Tho Begin Secret Talks
  • US Troops in Vietnam Fall to 200,000

  • Pentagon Papers Published

    Pentagon Papers Published
    A legacy of deception, concerning US policy in Vietnam, on the part of the military and the executive branch is revealed as the New York Times publishes the Pentagon Papers. The Nixon administration, eager to stop leaks of what they consider sensitive information, appeals to the Supreme Court to halt the publication. The Court decides in favor the Times and allows continued publication.
  • Nixon Cuts Troops by 70,000

  • Draft Ends

  • Cease Fire Signed in Paris

    Cease Fire Signed in Paris
    A cease-fire agreement that, in the words of Richard Nixon, "brings peace with honor in Vietnam and Southeast Asia," is signed in Paris by Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho. The agreement is to go into effect on January 28.
  • Communitsts Take Over MeKong Delta

  • Communists Plan Major Offensive

    With North Vietnamese forces in the South believed to be at their highest levels ever, South Vietnamese leaders gird themselves for an expected Communist offensive of significant proportions.
  • Last Americans Leave as Saigon Falls to the North

    Last Americans Leave as Saigon Falls to the North
    South Vietnamese President Duong Van Minh delivers an unconditional surrender to the Communists in the early hours of April 30. North Vietnamese Colonel Bui Tin accepts the surrender and assures Minh that, "...Only the Americans have been beaten. If you are patriots, consider this a moment of joy." As the few remaining Americans evacuate Saigon, the last two US servicemen to die in Vietnam are killed when their helicopter crashes