At the Geneva Accords in 1954 the country of Vietnam was split into north and south at the 17th parallel. The French retained control of the south while the the Communist Vietmihn, led by Ho Chi Minh, controlled the north.

Eventually war erupted between north and south, with the north being backed by the Soviet Union and the south by the United States. After a long, bloody war, in which the north were victorious, the country was reunited in 1975.

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