The War in Vietnam 1954-1973 - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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The War in Vietnam 1954-1973

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Title: The War in Vietnam 1954-1973


1
The War in Vietnam1954-1973
2
Background
  • Vietnam had a 2000 year history of nationalism
  • Had consistently fought off Chinese invasions
  • Colonized by the French in the late 1800s
  • Both France and Vietnam appealed to the US for
    help

3
Ho Chi Minh
  • The Vietminh were led by Ho Chi Minh
  • The French were defeated at the siege of Dien
    Bien Phu in 1954
  • Vietnam was split until elections could be held.

4
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5
  • North Vietnamese Army (NVA) and Viet Cong (VC)
    vs. The Republic of Vietnam (RVA) and the US

6
US Involvement
  • Eisenhower begins to send advisors (500)
  • Kennedy increases this number (16000)
  • Johnson will GREATLY increase this number
    (536,000 by 1968)

7
Containment
  • The United States would not openly confront
    Communist Russia, but would oppose the expansion
    of Soviet territory.

8
Domino Theory
  • If one falls, the rest will follow
  • This was our FIRM belief in the region
    (Appeasement!!!)
  • Johnsons commitment

9
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10
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11
Gulf of Tonkin Resolution
  • Alleged attack on a US warship by Vietnamese
    patrol ships
  • LBJ used this to push the Gulf of Tonkin
    Resolution through Congress (416 to 0, 88 to 2)
  • Greatly expanded the Presidents War Powers

12
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13
Battlefield Conditions
  • Vs. guerilla warfare in the swamps and jungles

14
Viet Cong could retreat into Laos and Cambodia
for protection
15
Vs. booby traps and land mines
16
Vs. the intricate tunnel system
17
  • South Vietnamese government was corrupt, and did
    not help the war effort as much as it could have.

18
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19
Toll on Civilians
  • Communist Brutality
  • Viet Cong Forces killed thousands of civilians as
    they were forced from cities

20
Massacre at My Lai
  • American forces killed 400 civilians who were
    suspected supporting the Viet Cong
  • American helicopter pilots helped to save many
    others

21
Intensifying The War
  • 1964-1968 LBJ gradually steps up the war in terms
    on manpower and dollars

22
Ho Chi Minh Trail
  • Steady stream of supplies that moved through Laos
    and Cambodia
  • Caused LBJ to start bombing North Vietnam
  • US never stopped

23
Ho Chi Minh Trail
24
Ho Chi Minh Trail
25
Rolling Thunder
  • Nonstop, intensive bombing campaign of North
    Vietnam

26
Chemical Weapons and Defoliants were used (Agent
Orange)
27
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28
Napalm
  • Incendiary gel that burns in excess of 5,000
    Degrees used by the US Military in Vietnam.
  • Photos of burned civilians turned many Americans
    against the war.

29
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30
Tet
  • 1/30/68 series of surprise attacks all
    throughout South Vietnam
  • Viet Cong were turned back with very heavy losses
  • Government had been telling people that the North
    Vietnamese were on the verge of surrender

31
Effects of Tet
  • showed that the Viet Cong could still mount major
    offensive
  • images of fighting on American TV turned many
    against the war
  • led many to believe the war was un-winnable

32
Effects on LBJs Presidency
  • LBJ went from being a very popular president in
    1963/1964, to one of the most unpopular by 1968.
  • Vietnam, in effect, wrecked his presidency.

33
Troop Levels in Vietnam
  • ESCALATION!
  • 1965
  • Beginning 25,000 End 184,000
  • 1966 385,000
  • 1967 485,000
  • 1968 536,000

34
Political Divisions
  • Student Activism
  • Baby Boomers
  • Sit-ins, Teach-ins
  • Free Speech Movements

35
Hawks and Doves
  • Hawks supported the war in Vietnam, while doves
    opposed it.

36
Communes
  • Hippies would SOMETIMES live together, share
    common property, possessions, work, resources,
    and income. Far out, man!

37
Conscientious Objectors
  • Men and women who refused to serve, though some
    served in non-combat roles

38
  • Resistance to the Vietnam War, and the draft for
    the War led to the formation of The New Left
    from Student Demonstration Groups

39
Students for a Democratic Society
  • SDS groups
  • Major college protest group
  • Organized protests among student groups
  • Protested against Vietnam War and Oppressive
    Government

40
Counterculture
  • Group whose norms are outside that of normal
    society. Examples include Clothing, drugs,
    music, goals, and sexual practices.

41
Johnson Decides not to Run
  • Tet Offensive convinces Johnson that he cannot
    win the war, nor the election, seeks peace with
    North Vietnam
  • Johnson not running causes the Democratic Party
    to Split into several factions

42
The Election of 1968
  • Democratic National Convention results in protest
    and rioting
  • Nixon tells America about his Secret Plan to
    win the war in Vietnam
  • Nixon Wins the Election

43
1968
  • Assassination of MLK
  • Tet Offensive
  • LBJ decides not to run for re-election
  • RFK is assassinated
  • Democratic National Convention / Election of
    1968
  • Passage of the 26th Amendment

44
The Last Years of the War 1968
  • Nixon Elected
  • Paris peace talks begin

45
1969
  • Nixon announces policy of Vietnamization
  • Formation of the Weather Underground Terrorist
    Group

46
1969 - Woodstock
  • Massive 3 day concert that is seen as the
    highpoint of 1960s music

47
1969 - Moon Landing
  • USA was challenged by JFK to make it to the moon
    by the end of the decade.
  • Landed July 20, 1969

48
1970
  • Nixon calls for law and order
  • Appeals to the Silent Majority
  • Students killed while protesting at Kent State in
    OH, and Jackson State in MS

49
1971
  • Nixon meets Elvis

50
1972
  • Nixon Re-elected
  • US troop levels in Vietnam fall to 24,000
  • North Vietnam renews attacks on South Vietnam
  • Nixon orders the most intensive bombing of the
    war

51
1973
  • US troops are completely withdrawn from Vietnam.

52
1975
  • Saigon falls to the North Vietnamese, the war is
    over

53
At Home - 58,000
  • US Soldiers were killed, 2500 were either POWs or
    MIAs. Many returning Vietnam Vets felt
    unappreciated. Ideas about the war left the
    country divided for years to come. Vietnam was
    the longest and least successful war in American
    history.

54
  • South Vietnam falls to The North Vietnamese army
    in 1975. Millions of Vietnamese soldiers and
    civilians died in the war.
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