Today marks the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Paris Peace Accords, the agreement that effectively marked the end of U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. Despite the ceasefire agreement, however, conflict would continue for years between North and South Vietnam.
The 10 years the the United States military committed to Vietnam gripped the public consciousness. The Vietnam War marked the first conflict in which images of war were beamed directly into American households via their television sets.
Explore some of the most gripping images from the Vietnam War.
Troops with the South Vietnamese Army combat Viet Cong in 1961. Prior to President Lyndon B. Johnson dramatically increasing the U.S. military presence in Vietnam in 1963, the U.S. government supported the South Vietnamese with money, munitions and military advisers.
The helicopter was a critical tool for the American military in transporting troops across the jungles of Southeast Asia.
South Vietnamese forces in 1966 capture a North Vietnamese soldier for interrogation.
North Vietnamese women undergo rifle training before joining Viet Cong forces in 1967. The rifles they wield are of America origin.
U.S. F105 Thunderchief bomb targets in North Vietnam. The effectiveness of the kind of large-scale bombing campaign waged by the United States was called into question in the aftermath of the war.
Just days after a massive assault by Viet Cong forces, American soldiers at Hill 875 near Dakto decorate a small Christmas tree.
American journalist Walter Cronkite reports from Vietnam for CBS News in 1968. Images broadcast from the battlefield and the reporting of journalists like Cronkite helped turn the tide of public opinion against the war.
A chaplain administers communion to a Marine in Hue, Vietnam in January 1968. That year would prove to be the deadliest on record for American forces, with more than 16,000 soldiers killed in action that year.
A wounded soldier is carried by American Navy and marines to safety in Dong Ha.
A 23-year-old American soldier takes a self portait. A Harvard study that came out in 2006 claimed that 19 percent of U.S. troops sent to Vietnam returned with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
The remains of a U.S. military plane crash scorch the land around the Khe Sanh Air Force base. The base was abandoned by American forces in 1968.
The fall of Saigon in 1975 marked the chaotic end of the civil war in Vietnam, with the Northern Communists overwhelming the capital of South Vietnam. American personnel and Vietnamese refugees scrambled to evacuate in the final moments the city remained in South Vietnamese control. In this photo, an American evacuee punches a Vietnamese man attempting to board an already overcrowded chopper out of the American embassy.