DMPQ- What caused the civil war in South Vietnam and why did the USA become involved?

Following its 1945 defeat in World War II, Japan withdrew its forces from Vietnam, leaving the French-educated Emperor Bao Dai in control. Seeing an opportunity to seize control, Ho’s Viet Minh forces immediately rose up, taking over the northern city of Hanoi and declaring a Democratic Republic of Vietnam (DRV) with Ho as president.  Seeking to regain control of the region, France backed Emperor Bao and set up the state of Vietnam in July 1949, with the city of Saigon as its capital.  Both sides wanted the same thing: a unified Vietnam. But while Ho and his supporters wanted a nation modeled after other communist countries, Bao and many others wanted a Vietnam with close economic and cultural ties to the West.

The Vietnam War and active U.S. involvement in the war began in 1954, though ongoing conflict in the region had stretched back several decades.  After Ho’s communist forces took power in the north, armed conflict between northern and southern armies continued until a decisive the northern Viet Minh’s decisive victory in the Battle of Dien Bien Phu in May 1954. The French loss at the battle ended almost a century of French colonial rule in Indochina.

With the Cold War intensifying worldwide, the United States hardened its policies against any allies of the Soviet Union, and by 1955 President Dwight D. Eisenhower had pledged his firm support to Diem and South Vietnam.  With training and equipment from American military and the CIA, Diem’s security forces cracked down on Viet Minh sympathizers in the south, whom he derisively called Viet Cong (or Vietnamese Communist), arresting some 100,000 people, many of whom were brutally tortured and executed.

APPSC GROUP 1 Notes brings Prelims and Mains programs for APPSC GROUP 1 Prelims and APPSC GROUP 1 Mains Exam preparation. Various Programs initiated by APPSC GROUP 1 Notes are as follows:- For any doubt, Just leave us a Chat or Fill us a querry––