This Week in HistoryThis Week in History: Week 18 (30 April 1975)

The War Ends In Vietnam

The South Vietnamese government surrenders to North Vietnam and the country is unified.

In 1975, the US-backed government of South Vietnam surrendered to North Vietnamese forces as they entered and took over Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City). The defeat surprised many as South Vietnam was supported in the war by US forces with their great supremacy in technology and fire-power. The victory of the North Vietnamese forces led to the unification of Vietnam under communist rule.

surrender (verb): give up the fight
backed (adjective): supported
supremacy (noun): extreme power; state of being superior to all others
fire-power (noun): the capability of weapons
unification (noun): the bringing together into one
communist rule (noun): the style of governing where property is publicly owned

Evacuation of American personnel from Saigon
This iconic photo shows the retreat by helicopter of the last remaining American CIA personnel from the rooftop of 22 Gia Long Street in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City), Vietnam, effectively bringing the American War in Vietnam to a close. Image: Hugo van Es

Mini Quiz

1. During the war in Vietnam, North Vietnamese forces defeated
a) communist forces throughout Vietnam
b) communist forces in South Vietnam only
c) US and South Vietnamese military forces

Show answer


2. The fact that North Vietnamese forces defeated the US military surprised many because the US forces had
a) much better soldiers
b) much better training
c) much better equipment

Show answer


3. Unification of a country can only occur after it has been
a) divided into independent states
b) attacked by a foreign army
c) under communist rule

Show answer


Contributor: Matt Errey creator of Word Up