Saturday marks the 30th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War. Following is a chronology of some key events in U.S. involvement in the conflict between communist leader Ho Chi Minh and the Republic of South Vietnam.
1962: United States has 12,000 military advisers in South Vietnam. "Strategic hamlet" program forces peasants to regroup in 16,000 fortified villages.
1964: North Vietnamese patrol boats allegedly attack U.S. destroyer Maddox in Gulf of Tonkin. United States starts bombing North Vietnam. Congress passes Gulf of Tonkin Resolution allowing president to take steps "to prevent further aggression."
1965: Marines land at Danang on March 8, the first U.S. combat troops officially in Vietnam.
1967: The number of U.S. troops in Vietnam rises to 500,000. Anti-war rallies staged in U.S. cities.
1968: The Tet Offensive. North Vietnamese and Viet Cong attack U.S. positions across South. Siege of Khe Sanh. My Lai massacre in March. U.S. presence peaks at 549,000 troops. Preliminary peace talks open in Paris. Lyndon Johnson withdraws from presidential race, halts bombing of North.
1969: President Nixon begins withdrawing U.S. ground troops. Covert bombing of Cambodia starts.
1970: Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho begin secret talks in Paris. In June, U.S. Senate repeals Tonkin Gulf Resolution.
1973: Kissinger and Le Duc Tho sign cease-fire in Paris.
1975: Southern cities fall one by one until Saigon on April 30.