Vietnam War - Atchu Thanapalan

Timeline created by Atchuthan
In History
  • Vietnamese defeat French

    Vietnamese defeat French
    The battle at Dien Bien Phu lasted 55 days in which three thousand French troops were killed, 8,000 wounded. The Viet Minh suffered much more, with 8,000 dead and 12,000 wounded; however, they managed to take the command post and victory, which shattered France's resolve to carry on the war.
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    Vietnam War

    The Vietnam War is unlike any other war America has ever fought in during the course of its history. U.S involvement had no definite beginning nor has any single day received consensus as the end from scholars. This war holds significance because it changed the way people view conflict and it continues to influence American foreign policy. To this date, it has been America's longest and most controversial war.
  • The Geneva Accords

    The Geneva Accords
    Delegates from nine nations gather in Geneva to start discussion that will lead to the end of the disputes and fights in Indochina mainly between France and the Vietminh. Vietnam is then divided into two countries, the communist North Vietnam and the capitalist South Vietnam.
  • Ngo Dinh Diem becomes President

    Ngo Dinh Diem becomes President
    Ngo Dinh Diem becomes the first president of the republic of South Vietnam. In America, President Eisenhower pledges his support for the new government and offers military aid. Diem assigned the highest ranking positions to family and close friends, including his brother who becomes his chief advisor. Diem's political style which is autocratic and uncaring would result in many problems for South Vietnam in the future.
  • National Liberation Front

    National Liberation Front
    The National Liberation Front (NLF), also called the Viet Cong, is established in South Vietnam. They would be known as the communist enemies of the United States and South Vietnam during the war.
  • Operation Chopper

    Operation Chopper
    Helicopters flown by U.S. Army pilots transport 1,000 South Vietnamese soldiers to attack a NLF stronghold near Saigon. It marks America's first combat mission against the Vietcong.
  • Thich Quang Duc Immolation

    Thich Quang Duc Immolation
    Duc was a Vietnamese Mahayana Buddhist monk who burned himself to death at a busy Saigon road intersection on 11 June 1963. He was protesting the persecution of Buddhists by South Vietnam's Roman Catholic government led by Ngo Dinh Diem. Photos of his self-immolation were circulated widely across the world and brought attention to the policies of the Diem regime; this in turn led to international pressure on Diem to change his biased policies.
  • Coup d'état

    Coup d'état
    South Vietnam's President Diem is overthrown in a military coup, widely due to his handling of the Buddhist crisis. Although the United States did not actively participate in the coup, the attempt to overthrow couldn’t and wouldn’t have happened without US approval. The United States hoped that by removing the unpopular Diem, they could strengthen the opposition to the communist Viet Cong. Diem and his brother Nhu were both captured and summarily executed.
  • Assassination of JFK

    Assassination of JFK
    Kennedy, opposed to his successor, Lydon Baynes Johnson, wanted to contain communism in more peaceful ways. He wanted to gain Vietnamese supporters by aiding South Vietnam with money and supplies; he helped the government with their peasantry problems, and wanted enforced education and agricultural advancement. His death led to the inauguration of LBJ, who would later on, plunge American troops into Vietnam in the thousands.
  • USS Maddox Incident

    USS Maddox Incident
    This incident is what escalated the American involvement in the Vietnam War by directly resulting the passing of the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. American naval vessels were sent to the Gulf of Tonkin where they gathered Intel on North Vietnamese forces, and also supported South Vietnamese military attacks along the coast of North Vietnam. These operations led to the alleged attack of NV boats on the USS Maddox. This allowed Johnson to gather enough support to pass the Gulf of Tonkin resolution.
  • Gulf of Tonkin Resolution

    Gulf of Tonkin Resolution
    The U.S. congress passes the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution; this gives President Johnson the power to take whatever actions he sees necessary to defend Southeast Asia. This was significant because it was the Congressional equivalent of a declaration of war to defend the Republic of Vietnam (Saigon) from aggression by the Democratic People's Republic of Vietnam (Hanoi) in that it permitted the President to wage war and spend the funds necessary to its pursuit.
  • China tests atomic bomb

    China tests atomic bomb
    North vietnams neighbor and ally succesfully tests its first atomic bomb, with this it becomes the worlds 5th nuclear power.
  • Operation Rolling Thunder

    Operation Rolling Thunder
    Operation Rolling Thunder was the name given to America’s continuous bombing campaign against North Vietnam during the Vietnam War. Operation Rolling Thunder was a perfect demonstration of America’s air supremacy during the war. Its purpose was to demoralize the North Vietnamese people and to undermine the capacity of the government in North Vietnam. Operation Rolling Thunder failed on both accounts, due to potential targets being restricted out of fear of soviet or Chinese response.
  • Operation Starlite

    Operation Starlite
    This operation was the first major ground combat mission for US forces in Vietnam. Vietcong forces were pushed back to their bunkers in Hill 43, where they fought to the death. It was a decisive and crushing victory for the US. To the Americans, who believed in the strategy of attrition, the kill ratio of 13 to 1 proved that US soldiers could dominate, and was essential in raising troop morale.
  • Operation Crimp

    Operation Crimp
    The US military deploys nearly 8,000 troops, making it the largest American operation of the war. The goal of the campaign is to capture the Vietcong's headquarters for the Saigon area, which is believed to be located in the district of Chu Chi. Though the area in Chu Chi is razed and repeatedly patrolled, American forces fail to locate any significant Vietcong base.
  • Operation White Wing

    Operation White Wing
    This was a joint military operation conducted by the United States and South Vietnamese forces. The purpose of this operation was to search and destroy communist camps from which Vietcong guerilla troops launched attacks on US and South Vietnamese bases. This was done by coercing peasants to hide weapons in their villages. Although this operation showed yet again that US firepower is capable of killing more of the enemy, the battle was rather inconclusive in terms of the broad attrition strategy
  • Tet Offensive

    Tet Offensive
    On the Vietnamese holiday known as Tet, Vietcong soldiers struck hundreds of cities and towns throughout South Vietnam with surprise attacks. By the end of the battles, the Vietcong faced devastating losses as their best fighters, political officers and organizers were among the casualties. They also faced a daunting 37,000 death count and even though the Americans only lost 2500; it was a serious blow to public support. This event was a crucial factor in the eventual withdrawal of the US forces
  • My Lai Massarcre

    My Lai Massarcre
    Originally initiated as a "search and destroy" mission, it eventually degenerated into the massacre of over 300 apparently unarmed civilians including women, children, and the elderly. When news of the atrocities finally surfaced, it sent shockwaves through the U.S. political establishment, the military's chain of command, and an already divided American public. It led to serious questions being brought up about the conduct of American soldiers in Vietnam.
  • Vietnamization begins

    Vietnamization begins
    The policy of Vietnamization was officially declared during a press conference while Nixon (then President) was visiting Guam, he announced that the U.S. had plans to increase the training of South Vietnamese troops and to bring the American soldiers home. The reason behind the policy was to get the South Vietnamese to take more responsibility for the war, so that the US forces can slowly begin to withdraw.
  • Cambodian Campaign

    Cambodian Campaign
    The Cambodian Invasion was significant in relation to America’s involvement in Vietnam because the protests against it lead directly to the Kent State massacre. When protesters had started to get more rowdy, soldiers tried to control the movement, eventually prompting them open fire on the students. Many Americans were outraged by this, as unnecessary violence had been used and innocent bystanders were hurt. This response by the government made the public insecure about their right to express.
  • Operation Linebacker

    Operation Linebacker
    Unlike its predecessor Operation Rolling Thunder, this mission didn’t have restrictions placed upon it, due to a change in administration. The objective of this operation is to destroy DRV infrastructure and its ability to sustain the invasion, eliminate the import of supplies coming into the DRV and to stop the flow of supplies and reinforcement from entering South Vietnam. The operation achieved all of its main objectives, and was a major success.
  • Operation Linebacker II

    Operation Linebacker II
    Operation Linebacker II (also known as the Christmas bombings) was the result of American frustration at the incompliance shown by the DRV. The United States desperately needed and wanted peace with Vietnam, so they began an aggressive 11-day bombing campaign (with a break for Christmas Day) that relentlessly attacked until the North Vietnamese agreed to re-open negotiations. This was one of the most intense bombing campaigns of the war and was also the last US bombing operation of the war.
  • Paris Peace Accords

    Paris Peace Accords
    The Paris Peace Accords were important because it lead to the final peace agreement that ended the war in Vietnam. The terms of the accords called for a complete ceasefire in South Vietnam, allowed for North Vietnamese forces to retain the territory they had captured, released US prisoners of war, and called for both sides to find a political solution to the conflict; rather than war.
  • NVA takes Phouc Long city

    NVA takes Phouc Long city
    The South Vietnamese face a disastrous loss, as the NVA takes the poorly defended Phouc Long city and the surrounding province. Although this is an extremely blatant violation of the Paris peace agreement, no retaliation is produced from the United States. This event is significant as it serves as a stepping stone for the North Vietnamese, who go on to win the war.
  • Fall of Saigon

    Fall of Saigon
    Two U.S. Marines are killed in a rocket attack at Saigon's Tan Son Nhut airport; they are the last Americans to die in the Vietnam War. At dawn, the last Marines of the force guarding the U.S. embassy take off. Only hours later, looters ransack the embassy, and North Vietnamese tanks roll into Saigon, ending the war. In the bloody 15 years, nearly a million NVA and Vietcong troops and a quarter of a million South Vietnamese soldiers have died. Hundreds of thousands of civilians had been killed.