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- 101st Airborne Division : A division of the U.S. Army, originally created as airborne, but now air assault with permanently assigned helicopter mobility
- Ambassador : An individual of the highest diplomatic rank, most commonly the representative of the head of state of his or her government to the head of state of the country to which the ambassador is accredited.
- Armed Forces Council : One of the military juntas of South Vietnam
- Command and control : The combination of lawful authority over people and resources, coupled with the methods of directing their execution of missions and tasks directed at goals set by that authority
- Cuban Missile Crisis : Probably the closest the U.S. and Soviet Union came to nuclear war, a confrontation, in October 1962, when Soviet missiles were discovered in Cuba, and eventually removed through a naval show of force and diplomatic maneuvering
- David Halberstam : Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author, who was especially controversial for his coverage of the Vietnam War, where some thought he was providing critical investigation for the public, while others believed he was undermining the war effort
- David Shoup : A U.S. Marine Corps general and the 22nd Commandant of the Marine Corps (1960-1963); received the Medal of Honor for the Battle of Tarawa
- Division (military) : A regularly constituted military formation that combines infantry, artillery and cavalry.
- Edward Lansdale : A U.S. Air Force general on assignment to the CIA, key counterinsurgency advisor to Philippine President Ramon Magsaysay, involved in French Indochina and South Vietnam 1954-1960, although lost influence in U.S. policymaking through bureaucratic infighting
- Frederick Nolting Jr. : U.S. ambassador and head of the United States Mission to the Republic of Vietnam, from May 10 to August 15, 1963. A career Foreign Service Officer, he was preceded by Elbridge Durbrow, and succeeded by Henry Cabot Lodge Jr.. A supporter of Ngo Dinh Diem, he did not agree with the policy of U.S. support for a coup against Diem.
- Henry Cabot Lodge Jr. : (1902-1985) was a representative and Senator from Massachusetts, Vice Presidential nominee (1960) and ambassador to Vietnam.
- High Legislative Council : A Buddhist-dominated 17-member body, which selected the government of South Vietnam, led by generals Nguyen Khanh (figurehead) and Duong Van Minh (actual), formed a government of neutralist sympathy in September 1964
- Joint warfare in South Vietnam 1964-1968 : The period of the Vietnam War in which large numbers of foreign ground troops, primarily but not exclusively U.S., allied with the Army of the Republic of Viet Nam against the People's Army of Viet Nam and the Viet Cong
- Mendenhall-Krulak mission : A 1963 U.S. investigating mission to South Vietnam, to assess the political and military situation there, by a career diplomat and a major general, who came up with radically different views of the situation.
- Ngo Dinh Diem : President of the Republic of Vietnam from shortly after its creation, to his overthrow and death in the Vietnam War, Buddhist crisis and military coup of 1963. He was of the Catholic minority, ascetic and autocratic, and strongly anti-Communist
- Pacification in South Vietnam : Sometimes called the "other war" in the Vietnam War, involving counterinsurgency and local development
- Richard Holbrooke : United States diplomat, currently the U.S. special envoy to South Asia, including Afghanistan; director, National Endowment for Democracy; Director, Atlantic Council
- Robert McNamara : A specialist in quantitative management who became president of the Ford Motor Company, but was quickly nominated as Secretary of Defense, becoming a major architect of policy, especially for the Vietnam War, in the John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson administrations.
- Special Assistant for Counterinsurgency and Special Activities : In the 1960s and 1970s, an officer who had responsibility for advising the Chairman of he Joint Chiefs of Staff on counterinsurgency and covert operations, the latter including military support to Central Intelligence Agency operations
- Tran Van Huong : South Vietnamese civilian politician, a Catholic but generally opposed to Ngo Dinh Diem, who was Prime Minister twice as well as Vice President, under military dominated rule but maintaining a certain personal independence and integrity, if authoritarianism
- Tran Van Tra : General officer of the People's Army of Viet Nam, serving from 1954 to the fall of South Vietnam, who has been in some disfavor for writing a frank history of the North Vietnamese side.
- United States Mission to the Republic of Vietnam : The combination of all U.S. official organizations in Vietnam; during the Vietnam War, it included the military, as opposed to the separate chains of command in Iraq and Afghanistan
- Vietnam War : A post-colonial independence/Cold War conflict between communist North Vietnam against South Vietnam, assisted by the United States (1955-1975), to unify Vietnam; won by North Vietnam in 1975.
- Vietnamese Communist grand strategy : Add brief definition or description
- Wars of Vietnam : Add brief definition or description
- William Bundy : Add brief definition or description