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During its short and tragic history, the Republic of Vietnam faced the usual problems of a newly independent nation compounded by armed communist assault.  Its armed forces were in combat during most of the republics life, at times with valor and success, but in the end not with victory. The United States, aided by others came to the defense of the Republic of Vietnam in an intervention that in the end failed. American forces lost no battles, but the cost grew too high in blood, money and politics. Vietnamese, American, and allied Armed Forces personnel and many civilians received medals for their service in the war. Orders, decorations, and medals are symbols of courage and merit, as well as human vanity. They are, also perhaps, enduring fragments and mementos of history. This book is intended to illustrate and describe all of the awards of the Republic of Vietnam. It also includes those of its allies for the war, along with the pertinent French and local ones. Included are short histories relevant to each one of these medals and other information that puts them in context. There are some additional sections that show examples of the uniforms, badges and shoulder sleeve insignia. The color plates and written descriptions of the Vietnamese awards are in the order of precedence. The Republic of Vietnam had separate precedence for the military and civilian medals, but a set of military ribbon bars would have the military awards first and the civil medals following. All of the information came from the book :