- Although the Americans left Vietnam in 1973, they continued to support the South Vietnamese army - the ARVN - with financial and military aid.
- In April 1975 the South Vietnamese regime collapsed and Vietnam was united.
The impact on Vietnam
- The North Vietnamese army - the NVA - massacred thousands of South Vietnamese after the Americans had left. Many people tried to flee South Vietnam (eg the "boat people").
- The Vietnamese had to fight wars against Cambodia and China before their independence was secured.
- Vietnam was ruined - its infrastructure was destroyed, thousands of its people had been killed, and its farmland was polluted by American chemical warfare. It remains one of the poorest countries in the world.
The impact on America
- 58,000 Americans died in Vietnam.
- The war had cost so much that President Johnson's Great Society program of social reform had to be cancelled.
- Loss of confidence: America had failed to "contain" communism. In 1973, Nixon announced that America was abandoning the Truman Doctrine. It was nearly 20 years before America again intervened militarily in world affairs.
- The domino theory was proved to be wrong. The fall of South Vietnam to communism was not immediately followed by a similar effect in other countries.
- News of atrocities such as the killings at My Lai lost the US its claim to moral superiority, and its status as the world's defender of freedom and right.
- 700,000 Vietnam veterans suffered psychological after-effects.
October 15th 1964
Nikita Krushchev removed from office. He was replaced by Leonid Brezhnev.
3. Novotny fell from power and on 5 January 1968, Alexandr Dubcek - a reformer - took over as leader of the Communist Party (KSC).
4. In April 1968, Dubcek's government announced an Action Plan for what it called a new model of socialism - it removed state controls over industry and allowed freedom of speech.
5. For four months (the Prague Spring), there was freedom in Czechoslovakia. But then the revolution began to run out of control. Dubcek announced that he was still committed to democratic communism, but other political parties were set up.
7. At a meeting in Bratislava on 3 August 1968, Brezhnev read out a letter from some Czechoslovakian Communists asking for help. He announced the Brezhnev Doctrine - the USSR would not allow any Eastern European country to reject Communism.
8. On 20 August 1968, 500,000 Warsaw Pact troops invaded Czechoslovakia. Dubcek and three other leaders were arrested and sent to Moscow.
9. The Czechoslovakians did not fight the Russians. Instead, they stood in front of the tanks, and put flowers in the soldiers' hair. Jan Palach burned himself to death in protest.