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Vietnam DeclassifiedThe CIA and Counterinsurgency$
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Thomas L Ahern

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780813125619

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813125619.001.0001

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A Matter of Running City Hall

A Matter of Running City Hall

Chapter:
(p.342) (p.343) Chapter 15 A Matter of Running City Hall
Source:
Vietnam Declassified
Author(s):

Thomas L. Ahern

Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
DOI:10.5810/kentucky/9780813125619.003.0016

The implementation of the Paris agreements in January 1973 intensified the Central Intelligence Agency's (CIA) focus, and that of all U.S. officials, on the military balance. The question of rural political loyalties, once held by so many to be the key to the outcome, was ignored or the answer taken for granted. A mistake in the analytic context, this omission had no practical effect on policy, for the United States had abdicated any effort to influence the “hearts and minds” of uncommitted peasants. By 1974, there was no American interest either in positive programs of rural political and social mobilization or in new efforts to deter or punish collaboration with the Viet Cong. The province fell three weeks later. Some Army of the Republic of South Vietnam (ARVN) forces put up desperate resistance, but such heroism served only to delay the end. North Vietnamese tanks rolled unopposed into Saigon, and the communists took over city hall.

Keywords:   Paris agreements, CIA, United States, Viet Cong, ARVN, North Vietnam, Saigon, communists, peasants

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