The years between the signature of the Paris "peace accords" in 1972 and the final collapse of South Vietnam in 1975 are usually neglected. Very often, they are little more than a footnote in histories of the Vietnam War. This does a great disservice to the fighting men of South Vietnam, especially the infantry, Rangers, airborne troops and Marines who fought long, bravely and under great handicaps and hardships in defense of their country. This history of the South Vietnamese armed forces operations between 1972 and 1975 reveals that during 1973 they had the upper hand in conflicts with the North Vietnamese. It was the abrupt end of American economic and material support in 1974 that doomed their efforts and brought about their eventual defeat. This period also saw Soviet and Chinese aid to North Vietnam transform the Nva from a largely light infantry army to a mechanized tank- and artillery-heavy combined arms force that so greatly outgunned the Arvn.