Myth #1: The War Began 50 Years Ago
Actually, the Vietnam War began 2,100 years ago. Imperial China overran the country around 111 BC. What followed was a thousand years of oppression of a proud nation that yearned for self-rule. Vietnam finally threw the Chinese out at the Battle of Bạch Đằng River in 938 AD and enjoyed 1,000 years of independence until the arrival of French explorers around 1620. They saw enormous profits to be made in tobacco, indigo, tea and coffee. Vietnam's independence gradually eroded as the France “assisted” in various disputes. By 1884, the entire country had come under French colonial rule.