VII. The Contemporary Period, 1945–2000 > G. East Asia, 1945–2000 > 5. Vietnam, 1945–2000
  The Encyclopedia of World History.  2001.
(See Aug. 2)
5. Vietnam, 1945–2000
1945, Sept. 2
With U.S. support, HÔ CHI MINH (1890–1969) proclaimed an independent Democratic Republic of Vietnam in Hanoi.  1
The surrender of Japanese forces was taken north of the 16th parallel by the Chinese and south of it by the British. In the north the Viêt Minh, under Nationalist Chinese auspices, continued to operate with Chinese support, in spite of usually tacit French desires to the contrary. The British in the south supported the Free French, with some 20,000 French civilians still in Saigon concerned that French imperial glory not be completely undone. With British help, the French militarily recaptured Saigon (Sept. 23) and by Jan. 1946 had retaken much of Cochin China. The British withdrew in Jan. 1946, the Chinese in the spring.  2
To gain wider support domestically from the educated elite and also internationally (especially from the Nationalists in China), the Viêt Minh claimed to disband the Indochinese Communist Party. Elections were held, and many non-Communist nationalists were brought into the government under the banner of the Lien Viêt popular front group.  3
The Encyclopedia of World History, Sixth edition. Peter N. Stearns, general editor. Copyright © 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Maps by Mary Reilly, copyright 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.