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1970 February 21 February March 12 March 18 March 27–28 April 11 April 28 April 29 April 30 June 24 June 29 June 30 October 7 December 31 Kissinger and Le Duc Tho hold first secret meeting. PAVN and Pathet Lao forces drive Royal Lao, Thai, and CIA-backed H’mong troops off the Plaine des Jarres and Xieng Khoang airfield, enlarging secure logistical corridor through southern Laos, With Prince Sihanouk out of the country, Phnom Penh government demands the immediate withdrawal of Vietnamese Communist troops from Cambodian territory.

Ho Chi Minh, “The Path Which Led Me to Leninism,” in Ho Chi Minh on Revolution, ed. Bernard B. Fall (New York: Praeger, 1967), 6; William J. Duiker, Ho Chi Minh (New York: Hyperion, 2000), 64–65; and Hue-Tam Ho Tai, Radicalism, 69. 5. See David G. Marr, Vietnam 1945: The Quest for Power (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1995). 6. Chen Jian, “China and the First Indo–China War, 1950–54,” The China Quarterly, no. 112 (March 1993): 85–110; and Qiang Zhai, “Transplanting the Chinese Model: Chinese Military Advisers and the First Vietnam War, 1950–54,” The Journal of Military History 57, no.

5 million American soldiers to South Vietnam. Though in many respects a continuation of the first war, the period from 1954 to 1975 was also a distinct phase. This phase should be known as the Second Indochina War. I prefer “Second Indochina War” to “Vietnam War” because the term identifies the latter as one segment in a longer complex of conflict, it more accurately describes the geographic scope of the fighting, and it avoids focus on a single country. Under this title one is free, indeed obliged, to weave stories from disparate vantage points into a single narrative.

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