Unformatted text preview: advantage. The Viet Minh army, under the command of Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap, chose to engage the French, and by Mar., 1954, some 49,500 Viet Minh troops had encircled Dienbienphu, where some 13,000 soldiers, under the leadership of Col. (later Gen.) Christian de Castries, were firmly entrenched in strong positions. The first Viet Minh assault came on Mar. 13, and by the end of April, despite massive French air bombardment, the French defense area had been reduced to 2 sq mi (5 sq km). Desperate pleas for U.S. intervention were unsuccessful, and on May 7, after a 56-day siege, the French positions fell. This defeat signaled the end of French power in Indochina....
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- Fall '10
- Vietnam War, Battle of Dien Bien Phu, Viet Minh, Viet Minh forces, Viet Minh thrust