Dien Bien Phu Fifty Years On

Nikki Cooper

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticlepeer-review


Although 2004 marks the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Dien Bien Phu and the end of France's colonial presence in Indochina, the war seems to have little resonance for the majority in today's France. Official commemorations of the anniversary, though muted in France, mythologise the battle as epic and legendary: the epitome of military honour and heroism. Veterans' memories, however, are evoked in terms of betrayal, abandonment and humiliation. What little debate exists over the war has stalled over the issue of whether the war would have been lost had its opponents not sought to scupper the French effort in Indochina.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)445-457
Number of pages14
JournalModern and Contemporary France
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2004


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