Please refer to bottom of post thread 2367
Vietnam was always one country, until 1954 when it was split into north and south as a temporary agreement until national elections were to be held in 1956.
the viet minh were the anti-colonialist revolutionaries, were throughout the entire country for the entire first five decades of the 20th century until the defeat of the French colonialists at DienBenPhu in 1953, after which the Vietnamese issued a declaration of independence.
The Viet Cong came into existence in the late 1950's in the south in opposition to the breakaway South Vietnamese government.
The opposition to the South Vietnamese government was initially Viet Cong (NLF) then increasingly the North Vietnamese.
I met a sweet lady from France who told me she was in the French Army in Vietnam, Can Tho, one of my locations in Vietnam as well....she said she was stabbed by a Viet Minh there in 1940.
Of course, when the Japanese invaded and took over Vietnam during WW2, the French colonial administration was left intact by the Japanese as they became allies of the Vichy government, the French government under the german Nazi occupation....and thousands of Vietnamese were drafted and sent to fight in southern France, used as laborers for the Nazis in Europe.
In WW2, the Vietnamese revolutionaries, the Viet Minh, were our allies. We both fought the Japanese together as allies.
After the war, the Vietnamese , our former allies, that is, wrote President truman asking for recognition and help in ending the French occupation.
Guess what happened?
I did my tour in Vietnam, being brought up in a conservative All-American authoritarian household, and then became an American revolutionary, non-violent, and you, my proud "Just-Word" Lit Kicks afficionado, are slumbering, waiting for an awakening.