Historical Dictionary



According to Vietnamese sources, between May 1950 and June 1954 the People’s Republic of China provided 21,517 tons of military and economic aid to the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (DRV). This aid included weapons, ammunition, and artillery, as well as rice, trucks, and medicines. The nature of this aid breaks down on an annual basis as follows: Between May and December 1950: 3,983 tons; 1951: 6,086 tons; 1952: 2,160 tons; 1953: 4,400 tons; and between January and June 1954: 4,892 tons. Thanks in large part to this assistance, General Vo Nguyen Giap built, coordinated, and unleashed a remarkably modern army against the French in a set-piece battle at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. Vietnamese troops were also trained and outfitted in southern China in the early 1950s.

Chinese aid also extended into the economic, ideological, intelligence, and health fields. The Vietnamese borrowed and applied Chinese rectification methods, allowing them to take hold of the army, the party, and the society they sought mobilize and communize. Between July and September, the DRV received via Plan Z 11,546 tons of weapons and equipment and 1,116 motor vehicles of all types. This was the remaining amount that the Chinese and Soviets had budgeted to the DRV, but had not delivered before the Geneva Accords put an end to the war in July 1954. See also AID, AMERICAN; AID, MALAYSIA; AID, SOVIET; AIR FORCE, FRANCE; ARMY, ASSOCIATED STATE OF CAMBODIA; ARMY, ASSOCIATED STATE OF LAOS; ARMY, ASSOCIATED STATE OF VIETNAM; FINANCIAL COST OF INDOCHINA WAR, FRANCE.