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The Vietnam War as History MyLai Massacre The Decision To Escalate Lessons of Vietnam Teacher Resources Public Opinion and the War Negotiated Settlement The Antiwar Movement Music of the Vietnam Era

Where is Vietnam?

Vietnam map

Vietnam and Southeast Asia

Vietnam is located on the eastern side of the Indochina Peninsula in Southeast Asia.

Geography

Area: 331,114 sq. km. (127,243 sq. mi.); equivalent in size to Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee combined.
Cities (2009): Capital--Hanoi (pop. 6.472 million). Other cities--Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon; pop. 7.163 million), Haiphong (pop. 1.841 million), Danang (pop. 890,500), Can Tho (pop. 1.189 million).
Terrain: Varies from mountainous to coastal delta.
Climate: Tropical monsoon.

People

Nationality: Noun and adjective--Vietnamese (sing. and pl.).
Population (2011): 90 million.
Annual population growth rate (2011): 1.077%.
Ethnic groups (2009): 54 groups including Vietnamese (Kinh) (73.594 million, or 85.7% of the population), Tay (1.89%), Thai (1.8%), Muong (1.47%), Khmer (1.46%), Chinese (0.95%), Nung (1.12%), Hmong (1.24%).
Religions (2008): Buddhism (approx. 50%), Catholicism (8%-10%), Cao Dai (1.5%-3%), Protestantism (0.5%-2%), Hoa Hao (1.5%-4%), Islam (0.1%), and other animist religions.
Languages: Vietnamese (official), English (increasingly favored as a second language), some French, Chinese, and other ethnic minority languages.
Education (2009): Literacy--94%.
Health (2011): Birth rate--17.07 births/1,000 population. Infant mortality rate--20.9 deaths/1,000 live births. Life expectancy--73 yrs. Death rate--5.96/1,000 population.

Government

Type: Single-party constitutional republic (Communist Party).
Independence: September 2, 1945.
Constitution: April 15, 1992.
Branches: Executive--president (head of state and chair of National Defense and Security Council) and prime minister (heads cabinet of ministries and commissions). Legislative--National Assembly. Judicial--Supreme People's Court; Prosecutorial Supreme People's Procuracy.
Administrative subdivisions: 58 provinces, 5 municipalities (Can Tho, Haiphong, Danang, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City).
Political party: Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) with over 3 million members, formerly (1951-76) Vietnam Worker's Party, itself the successor of the Indochinese Communist Party founded in 1930.

U.S. Department of State World Factbook
http://www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/bgn/4130.htm

Also see A Country Study: Vietnam at the Library of Congress
http://memory.loc.gov/frd/cs/vntoc.html

 

The following locations were significant in Vietnamese history:

 

 

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