Ngo Dinh Diem and Gen. Paul Harkins, 1962


Al Chang ©Stars and Stripes
South Vietnam, 1962: Gen. Paul D. Harkins, commanding general of the U.S. Military Assistance Advisory Command, Thailand and Vietnam, shakes hands with South Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem during opening ceremonies for the new airfield at Tan Son Nhut, outside Saigon. Fifty years ago this month, Diem and his brother and adviser, Ngo Dinh Nhu, were assassinated by South Vietnamese military forces, plunging an already-unstable country into further turmoil.

Read a 1963 story about the coup.

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