(Re)Collecting the Vietnam War

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As war between France and Vietnam escalates, the Viet Minh’s People’s Army of Vietnam invades the northeastern part of the French Protectorate of Laos on 12 April 1953. This provides the opportunity for the Pathet Lao to establish a "resistance…

The French assembly passes the Elysée Agreement on 29 January 1950, granting limited autonomy to the Associated States of Indochina (Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia) within the French Union.

On 26 September 1989, the last Vietnamese troops withdraw from Cambodia.

In the 1980s, with no infrastructure, faced with poverty and famine, 510,000 Cambodians flee to neighboring Thailand and Vietnam. Almost 150,000 Cambodian refugees, aided by the passage of the 1980 Refugee Act, find asylum in the United States.

On 7 January 1979, Vietnamese troops takeover Phnom Penh, marking the end of the Khmer Rouge reign of terror. Cambodia is renamed “The People’s Republic of Kampuchea” and is under Vietnamese control for the next decade (until 1989).

There were numerous protests in the United States against the expansion of the Vietnam War into Cambodia. The most famous protest occurred at Kent State, where on 4 May 1970 the Ohio National Guard opened fire and killed four student protesters.

In 1995, the U.S. opens normal diplomatic relations with Viet Nam. Việt Nam opens an embassy in Washington, D.C., on 5 August 1995, and the U.S. Embassy opens in Hà Nội the following day.

On 3 February 1994, President Bill Clinton lifts the U.S. trade embargo against Việt Nam that was in place since 1964, allowing U.S. firms to export to Việt Nam and to compete for business opportunities in Việt Nam that had been previously…

The United Nations convenes the Geneva Conference on 20-21 July 1979, resulting in agreements with Southeast Asian countries to provide temporary first asylum to the refugees, Vietnam to promote orderly departures under the ODP rather than permit…

The United States Air Force begins “Operation Arc Light,” a three-year B-52 bombing campaign intended to support ground combat operations in Vietnam, on 18 June 1965. Ignoring Cambodia’s neutrality, the U.S. illegally bombs the nation’s…
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