10 Terrible Famines In History

9. Vietnamese Famine of 1945


As a protectorate under France, Vietnam was under colonial rule for much of World War II. As Japanese expansion began in Indochina, Vietnam was taken for the Japanese, and a collaborationist French government sided with the Japanese. Agricultural focus shifted from sustenance to war-materials, specifically rubber. The Japanese exploited what little crop farms remained, and the invading forces commandeered most of these crops. This, teamed with an unbearable drought followed by biblical flooding, caused mass starvation across much of Northern Vietnam. The resulting famine killed 2 million Vietnamese.

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