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The Tet offensive was a military operation planned by the government of North Vietnam and executed by the Army of North Vietnam and the Vietcong in 1968 against allied forces led by the United States, especially the Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN, Army of South Vietnam), during the Vietnam War.

The offensive was a failure of the communists but had a strong effect on the US government and shocked the American public, which their political and military leaders had led to believe that the North Vietnamese were being defeated and unable to launch such an ambitious military operation. US public support for the war soon declined and the US began to change its strategy after being convinced that it could not win militarily and sought negotiations to end the war.

The planning of the offensive was meticulous and the execution well done but the military results proved disastrous for the communists; not so the political consequences, especially in the United States. The large number of US soldiers killed during the offensive, some 4,000, was not digested by the American people.

The rejection of war in the United States increased. Some historians consider that it was a tactical defeat, since in addition to dying tens of thousands of North Vietnamese fighters, they lost many of the positions they had control over previously. However, has been considered by some to be a strategic victory due to the subsequent change it caused in the US military strategy.

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