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The Vietnam War was a military struggle starting in 1959 and ending in 1975 It began as an attempt by the Vietcong Communist Guerrillas to overthrow the Southern Vietnam Government This research paper will discuss the Vietnam War US involvement in this war and significant battles Following the surrender of Japan to the Allies in August 1945 Vietminh guerrillas seized the capital city of Hanoi and forced the abdication of Emperor Bao Dai On September 2 they declared Vietnam to be independent and announced the creation of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam commonly called North Vietnam with Ho Chi Minh as president France officially recognized the new state but the subsequent inability of the Vietminh and France to reach satisfactory political and economic agreements led to armed conflict beginning in December 1946 Northern Vietnam was determined to gain its freedom Davis 12 With French backing Bao Dai set up the state of Vietnam commonly called South Vietnam on July 1 1949 and established a new capital at Saigon now Ho Chi Minh City Where as the Southern Vietnam government seemed content to be a sort of a colony Davis 12 The following year the US officially recognized the Saigon government and to assist it President Harry S Truman dispatched a military assistance advisory group to train South Vietnam in the use of US weapons In April 1961 a treaty of amity and economic relations was signed with South Vietnam and in December President John F Kennedy pledged to help South Vietnam maintain its independence Subsequently US economic and military assistance to the Diem government increased significantly In December 1961 the first US troops consisting of 400 uniformed army personnel arrived in Saigon in order to operate two helicopter companies the US proclaimed however that the troops were not combat units as such A year later US military strength in Vietnam stood at 11200 By the end of 1965 American combat strength was nearly 200000 In
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