Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Ngo Dinh Diem
Ngo Dinh Diem was a Vietnamese political leader who was president with dictatorial powers, of South Vietnam from 1955 until his assassination. He was born into one of Vietnam's noble families on January 3, 1901. When he was younger he was friendly with Vietnamese imperial families. In 1933, he served as emperor Bao Dai's minister of the interior, but resigned the same year because the French didn't approve of the legislative reforms. However, he returned in 1954 due to Bao Dai's request to serve as prime minister of a U.S.-backed government in South Vietnam. He made himself president of South Vietnam (newly declared Republic of Vietnam) after defeating Bao Dai in government controlled referendum. During which, he refused to carry out the Geneva Accords, this called for free elections to be held throughout Vietnam in 1956 in order to establish a national government.