8. The United States worked to start the war between North and South Vietnam
Under the Eisenhower Administration, several governments were toppled around the world with the support of the Central Intelligence Agency, including in Iraq, Iran, South America and the Caribbean. In Vietnam, beginning in 1954, according to the Pentagon Papers, the CIA and other agencies worked on both sides of the DMZ to foment an insurrection against the Geneva Agreement. In one of the most startling revelations of the documents, it was revealed that the United States played a “direct role in the breakdown of the Geneva settlement”.
At the same time, the United States offered covert support to the government in South Vietnam for the creation of the Army of the Republic of Vietnam, in the form of financial aid and military advisors. Driven by the belief that it was necessary to contain the imperial ambitions of China under Mao, the United States took a chance on creating a well-armed and trained ally in the ARVN and the government which controlled it. The Pentagon Papers contained a statement which read, by the time President Kennedy entered office, the nation of South Vietnam existed and, “We must note that South Vietnam (unlike any of the other countries in Southeast Asia) was essentially the creation of the United States”.