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VIETNAM WAR 1964-1973

Background
5 presidencies
(Eisenhower, JFK, LBJ,
Nixon, Ford)
France out in 1954
Cold War Stuff
Hot War 1964-1973

Division of Vietnam

Geneva Conference, 1954 -- 17th parallel


Elections
Ngo Dinh Diems South
Ho Chi Minh leader of communists in
North Vietnam

Why We Fight
Domino Theory
Vietnam, Laos,
Cambodia, Thailand,
Burma

Who We Fight
Vietcong South
Vietminh North
Officially called the
NLF (National
Liberation Front)
Civil War

LBJs War
"Im not going to be the
president who saw
Southeast Asia go the
way China went."
Dean Rusk, Sec. of State
Robert McNamara, Sec.
of Defense
Non-Communist Govt.

Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, 1964


Official Story
Aug.2 Unprovoked
Attack on U.S.S. Maddox
Aug. 4 Follow up
Attack
Aug. 7 LBJ introduces
Resolution demanding
power to take all
necessary steps to
prevent further aggression
Congress
Complies

Truth Behind the


Truth
Aug. 2 USS
Maddox was not on
regular patrol. It
was gathering intel for
S. Vietnam
Aug. 4 attack never
even happened
Media jumped on LBJ
bandwagon
As did Congress

"For all I know, our


Navy was shooting
at whales out
there."
-LBJ, 1965

Operation Rolling Thunder

US Escalates
Quagmire
Domino Theory!!
US bombing
"Ho Chi Minh Trail"

Napalm & Agent Orange


Napalm tough jelly
burns
Agent Orange kills
vegetation
G.I. Cancer

Jungle War

Search & destroy


Charlie
Vietcong backyard
"Pacification"
Avg GI = 19

Tet Offensive, 1968


Tet New Year, Jan 30.
1968
VC attack!
Effects

1968 Homefront

Tet Offensive
My Lai Massacre
Martin Luther King, Jr. assassinated
Robert Kennedy assassinated
Riot outside the Democratic National Convention
in Chicago
Nixons victory ushered in an era of political
conservatism
Stokely Carmichael & Black Panthers
Summer of Love

Nixons War
1969 Secret Plan?
Nope. 4 more years,
thousands lost
Lottery draft
"Vietnamization"
Nixon Doctrine

Silent Majority Speech


Large-scale protests
My Lai Massacre,
1968 (revealed to
public in 1969)
By October 1969, 2
million protest
Silent Majority
Protestors were
divisive

"Pentagon Papers" 1971


Classified docs leaked to
press
Govt. deception
Primary reason for
fighting was not to
eliminate communism but
to "avoid a humiliating
political defeat."
Gulf of Tonkin truth
revealed

Paris Accords (1973)

N. Vietnam controls South


US POWs freed
US withdraws
Nixon: "Peace with honor"
Critics: "Could have come to
this agreement 4 years earlier."
March 29, 1973 last troops
out
S. Vietnam falls in 1975
Saigon Ho Chi Minh City

Costs of the War

58,000 dead Americans


300,000 wounded
MIA -2,583
Over 2 million Vietnamese dead
MIAs - 300,000
No Great Society
Public Distrust (Watergate also)
26th Amendment