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Tet Offensive

Slated for January 30, 1968, to coincide with the Tet, or lunar new year, holiday, the Tet Offensive was the largest communist-led military offensive of the Vietnam War. Coordinated actions by the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) and Viet Cong guerrillas struck without warning across South Vietnam and triggered heavy fighting. Viet Cong infiltrators penetrated the grounds of the U.S. embassy in Saigon. Communist forces sustained significant casualties during the months that followed, resulting in a tactical defeat for the communists.

However, the shock of the offensive and the realization that communist forces were capable of such a coordinated military action resulted in a strategic and propaganda victory for the NVA and Viet Cong. Extensive media coverage in the United States contributed to an erosion of support for the Vietnam War among the American people.

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