Thesoldiersproject is supported by its audience. When you buy through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

What Military Advantages Did the Americans Have Over the Vietcong?

Written by Everett Bledsoe / Fact checked by Brain Bartell

what military advantages did the americans have over the vietcong

What military advantages did the Americans have over the Vietcong? This is a common question if you’re learning US history in school.

While the Vietcong had better knowledge of the land to aid them in guerilla warfare, plus support from the Soviet Union and China, America had superior weapons, greater firepower, technology, and more soldiers.

We’ll discuss these advantages in detail below.

American Military Advantages in the Vietnam War

1. Soldier Number


American troop strength partially came from superiority in numbers. At the start of 1967, there were about 100,000 more American soldiers than there were Vietcong fighters.

By the end of the war in 1975, more than 3.4 million Americans had been sent to Vietnam, while the total number of Vietcong fighters was 2.3 million in the same year.

2. Weaponry and Firepower

American Helicopters in the Vietnam War

In terms of weaponry, the Vietcong had no aircraft, tanks, or artillery and had to rely on foreign support.

They also used low-tech weapons like daggers and swords or equipment seized from South Vietnamese bases, along with guns from the French army acquired during the first Indochina war.

Soviet rifles and anti-tank weapons came into use later in 1967, but up to 1970, the firepower of Vietcong forces was insubstantial compared to the strength of American military technology.

The US, in contrast, had air superiority with gunships, grenade and rocket launchers, helicopters, and vessels for artillery support.

This advantage allowed for military strategies like air raids and bombings to destroy bases & supply routes, napalm dumping to attack Vietcong fighters, and the use of Agent Orange to destroy natural camouflage.


What military advantages did the Americans have over the Vietcong? We hope this article gave you the answer.

The reasons for the outcomes of war are numerous, and although it may be debatable why the Vietnam War ended the way it did, one thing is clear: technological strength and numerical advantage are important, but they’re not everything.

5/5 - (1 vote)