4. State of Vietnam & Republic of Vietnam
The story of the region we now know as Vietnam is another of those that features European colonial powers (in this case France) making their influence felt in a foreign land. As often happens the relationship deteriorated and a struggle for power ensued. In this case, following the Second World War the area around Hanoi in Northern Vietnam was declared as independent from France by a communist regime. In response the non-communists established a power base in Saigon in the South in 1949. This new nation, which used an adapted version of the flag of the former state of Cochinchina, existed as the State of Vietnam until 1955 when a change of government saw the nation become the Republic of Vietnam. However, South Vietnam is more usually used to refer to both, as opposed to the Democratic Republic of Vietnam/North Vietnam. A brutal war took place between the North and South until eventually Saigon was overrun by the North in 1975, despite the intervention of the USA on the side of the South. Though the flag officially fell with the state, it is occasionally still used by emigrants from South Vietnam and has become known as the Vietnamese Heritage and Freedom Flag.