Conflict in Indochina

Foreign Office Files for Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia

The resource, part of the Archives Direct suite drawn from The National Archives, UK, provides comprehensive coverage of the key events during the War in Vietnam, and the wider impact on Laos and Cambodia.

The material covers the role of regional actors within Indochina, including China, the US and the Soviet Union, as they compete for influence within the context of the Cold War.

Broader themes include examinations of Anglo-American relations and British foreign policy. In depth files on the internal politics of Laos, Cambodia, and North and South Vietnam further explore increasing instability across the region following French decolonisation.

File classes

  • FO 371
  • FCO 15

Modules include

Module Summary Date
Crisis and Upheaval, 1959-1964

Covers the growing conflict between North and South Vietnam, and the resulting political instability across the region. There is significant coverage of Laos and the Geneva Convention in 1962, which produced an agreement on the neutrality of Laos.

Escalation, Reunification and Withdrawal, 1965-1979 (publishing 2024)

Features material on US activity and escalation in the region as well as the Cambodian Civil War and eventual control by the Khmer Rouge. The materials will extend users understanding of the situation in Cambodia, including files examine the relations between the UK, Vietnam and Cambodia and material from the United Nations investigations into the Cambodian genocide.


Key data

Period covered


Source archive

  • The National Archives, UK
  • Anglo-American relations and foreign policy
  • Commercial relations and trade
  • Internal politics in the region
  • Military conflict and upheaval
  • The Cold War and global relations
  • Government records
  • Matthew Jones, London School of Economics
  • Kosal Path, Brooklyn College, City University of New York
  • Ang Cheng Guan, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
  • Edward Miller, Dartmouth College
  • Simon Creak, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
  • East Asian Studies
  • International Relations
  • Political History and Science
  • South Asian Studies


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