Ngo Dinh Diem
South Vietnam was a state which governed southern Vietnam until 1975. It received international recognition in 1950 as the "State of Vietnam" and later as the "Republic of Vietnam" . Its capital was Saigon...
(1955–1963). In the wake of the French withdrawal from Indochina as a result of the 1954 Geneva Accords
Geneva Conference (1954)
The Geneva Conference was a conference which took place in Geneva, Switzerland, whose purpose was to attempt to find a way to unify Korea and discuss the possibility of restoring peace in Indochina...
, Diệm led the effort to create the Republic of Vietnam. Accruing considerable U.S. support due to his staunch anti-Communism
Anti-communism is opposition to communism. Organized anti-communism developed in reaction to the rise of communism, especially after the 1917 October Revolution in Russia and the beginning of the Cold War in 1947.-Objections to communist theory:...
, he achieved victory in a 1955 plebiscite that was widely considered fraudulent. Proclaiming himself the Republic's first President, he demonstrated considerable political skill in the consolidation of his power, and his rule proved authoritarian, elitist, nepotistic, and corrupt.