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The Vietnam War

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					The Vietnam War
     The U.S. decided to stop
 communism in Southeast Asia
A Pre-War Time Line
Vietnam was under Chinese rule for 1100
 years
In the 1500s the French took over
 Southeast Asia
  Sent their navy to protect them, but they never
   left
  Hoped to civilize Vietnam
  Created plantations and tenant farms
  Controlled the masses with opium and alcohol
A Pre-War Time Line
Ho Chi Minh (communist)
  Formed the Vietminh to help fight Japanese
   occupation in WWII
  Vietminh supported by the U.S.
  BUT, U.S. supported French occupation after
   the war
French Indochina War
  France and the Vietminh fight for control of
   Vietnam
A Pre-War Time Line
 At the Battle of Dienbienphu France loses the
  war.
 The Geneva Accords split Vietnam on the 17th
  parallel
  The North is governed by Ho Chi Minh – Chinese
   backed communist
  The South is governed by Ngo Dinh Diem – U.S. backed
   dictator
 Planned 1956 nation-wide election
Ho Chi Minh
 Vietnamese
  revolutionary
 Wanted independence
  for Vietnam
 Communist
 In exile for over ten
  years before WWII
 Formed the Vietminh to
  fight for Vietnamese
  independence
Ngo Dinh Diem
            Western educated
            Catholic - restricted
             Buddhist practices
            Dictator of South
             Vietnam
            Strong anti-
             Communist
So many differences…

             List the differences
              between Ho Chi Minh
              and Ngo Dinh Diem.

             Do they have any
              similarities?
The U.S. Intervenes
In a nation-wide election Ho Chi Minh
 would have won…
  He was extremely popular because of his land
   reform in the North
The U.S. believed that if Ho was elected it
 would cause the rest of South East Asia to
 become communist
  The Domino Theory
Vietcong
By 1957, an opposition group to Diem
 developed.
The Vietcong were communists and began
 attacks against Diem’s government
By 1959, Ho began to supply the Vietcong,
 the National Liberation Front (NLF), with
 arms through the Ho Chi Minh Trail
Conflicting Interests in Vietnam
Vietminh and Vietcong   Wanted freedom from foreign interference in Vietnam
                        Wanted all of Vietnam to be Communist
United States           Afraid of Communist takeover of South Vietnam
                        Supported Diem as best hope for keeping South
                                  Vietnam non-Communist
                        Willing to intervene militarily, but did not want to
                                  involve China
Ngo Dinh Diem           Dictator, not democratic
                        Used American aid to maintain personal power
Buddhists               Persecuted by Diem’s government
                        Protested persecution
Rebel Generals          Wanted to get rid of Diem
                        Wanted power for themselves
Diem is overthrown…

Between 1955-1961 the US gave more
 than $1 billion to Diem for military aid
US tired of Diem using that to maintain
 power instead of fighting the Vietcong
Communists and non-Communists in
 South Vietnam began to protest the Diem
 government.
US staged a military coup - Diem killed.
Vietcong
 By 1964 the Vietcong
  controlled over half of
  South Vietnam
 Used tunnels all over
  the south to hide,
  plan, live.
 Booby traps and
  small entrances kept
  American soldiers
  from infiltrating the
  tunnel system
Gulf of Tonkin Resolution
 August 2, 1964 the
  U.S.S. Maddox
  experienced apparent
  hostility from North
  Vietnamese gun
  boats in international
  waters.
 A second interaction
  followed two nights
  later…
 Congress, given intel
  from the DOD,
  created the GOTR
Power to Johnson
 The Gulf of Tonkin
  Resolution gave the
  president the power
  to wage a war against
  communism in South
  Vietnam.
 Technically, it was not
  a declaration of war,
  but it gave the
  president the same
  powers as he would
  have in war.
Operation Rolling Thunder
 LBJ orders extensive
  bombing on North
  Vietnam and Laos
 North Vietnamese still
  persisted - supplying
  the Vietcong
 In 1965 LBJ ordered
  more troops to
  Vietnam
 1969 - U.S. troops in
  Vietnam peaked at
  543,400
South Vietnamese Reaction
 Ho continued to
  supply the Vietcong
  with arms.
 Johnson tried to make
  this an
  “Americanized” war
 With each bomb
  dropped on a village
  more South
  Vietnamese began to
  support the Vietcong
Tet Offensive
 1968
 Vietcong and NVA
  attacked 100 different
  cities and villages at
  the same time.
 Proved that the
  “enemy” was
  organized
 Not the rag-tag force
  we thought we were
  fighting
Vietnamization

 After Johnson asks
  Hanoi to begin
  negotiations
 Nixon suggests the
  policy of
  “Vietnamization”
 Replacing U.S. troops
  with Vietnamese
  troops
Bombing of Cambodia
 Nixon says we are
  going to get the
  Vietnamese to fight
  their own war
 Then America finds
  out that he is
  escalating the war by
  bombing Cambodia
 Trying to stop
  supplies from North
  Vietnam
Cease Fire

January of 1973 U.S. and North Vietnam
 sign a cease fire agreement
The U.S. promises to withdraw within 60
 days
Vietnam plunged into full scale civil war
April 29, 1975 Saigon falls to the northern
 communists
Eventually, Cambodia and Laos become
 communist too.
Vietnam Chronology…

 1954
 Defeat of French by Vietminh
 at Dienbienphu
 Geneva Conference splits
 Vietnam into North and South
 at the 17th Parallel
Vietnam Chronology…

 1957
 Formation of the NLF
 (Vietcong) in South Vietnam
Vietnam Chronology…

 1964
 Tonkin Gulf Resolution by
 Congress in response to the
 North Vietnamese “attack”
Vietnam Chronology…

 1965
 First ground troops arrive in
 South Vietnam
Vietnam Chronology…

 1967
 Antiwar protests in the U.S.
 intensify.
Vietnam Chronology…

 1968
 Tet Offensive launched by
 Vietcong with support from
 North Vietnam
 What else happened in 1968?
Vietnam Chronology…

 1969
 U.S. troops be withdrawn from
 Vietnam - Vietnamization
Vietnam Chronology…

 1970
 -Kent State tragedy
 -Nixon decides to bomb
 Cambodia
Vietnam Chronology…

 1973
 U.S. and North Vietnam and
 Vietcong sign a cease fire,
 ending American involvement
 in Vietnam War
Vietnam Chronology…

 1975
 Saigon falls;
 South Vietnam surrenders to
 the communists of the North
Cause and Effect: The War in Vietnam

				
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