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The Vietnam War, 1954-1975

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The Vietnam War 1954 - 1975 58,000 * Ho Chi Minh had been fighting for Vietnamese independence since World War I. The U.S. gave France aid to win its support in ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The Vietnam War, 1954-1975


1
The Vietnam War 1954 - 1975
2
Background to the War
  • France controlled Indochina since the late 19th
    century
  • Japan took control during World War II
  • With U.S. aid, France attempted re-colonization
    in the postwar period

3
(No Transcript)
4
Background to the War
  • The French lost control to Ho Chi Minhs Viet
    Minh forces in 1954 at Dien Bien Phu
  • President Eisenhower declined to intervene on
    behalf of France.

5
Background to the War
  • International Conference at Geneva
  • Vietnam was divided at 17th parallel
  • Ho Chi Minhs nationalist forces controlled the
    North
  • Ngo Dinh Diem, a French-educated, Roman Catholic
    claimed control of the South

6
Background to the War
  • A date was set for democratic elections to
    reunify Vietnam
  • Diem backed out of the elections, leading to
    military conflict between North and South

7
U.S. Military Involvement Begins
  • Repressive dictatorial rule by Diem
  • Diems family holds all power
  • Wealth is hoarded by the elite
  • Buddhist majority persecuted
  • Torture, lack of political freedom prevail
  • The U.S. aided Diems government
  • Pres. Eisenhower sent financial and military aid
  • 675 U.S. Army advisors sent by 1960.

8
U.S. Military Involvement Begins
  • Kennedy elected 1960
  • Increases military advisors to 16,000
  • 1963 JFK supports a Vietnamese military coup
    detat Diem and his brother are murdered (Nov.
    2)
  • Kennedy was assassinated just weeks later (Nov.
    22)

9
Johnson Sends Ground Forces
  • Remembers Trumans loss of China ? Domino
    Theory revived (If one country fell to
    communism the surrounding countries would also
    fall.)

Im going to be the president who saw Southeast
Asia go the way China went. not
10
Johnson Sends Ground Forces
  • Advised to rout the communists by Secretary of
    State, Robert S. McNamara
  • Tonkin Gulf Incident ? 1964(acc. to Johnson, the
    attacks were unprovoked)
  • Tonkin Gulf Resolution
  • The Blank Check - Johnson could send as many
    forces as he wanted to Vietnam

11
U.S. Troop Deployments in Vietnam
12
The Ground War 1965-1968
  • No territorial goals
  • Body counts on TV every night (first living
    room war)
  • Viet Cong (N. Vietnamese Communists) supplies
    over the Ho Chi Minh Trail

13
The Air War1965-1968
  • 1965 Sustained bombing of North Vietnam
  • Operation Rolling Thunder (March 2, 1965)
  • 1966-68 Ongoing bombing of Hanoi nonstop for 3
    years! Esp. targets the Ho Chi Minh Trail.
  • Downed Pilots P.O.W.s
  • Carpet Bombing napalm

14
Who Is the Enemy?
  • Vietcong
  • Farmers by day guerillas at night.
  • Very patient people willing to accept many
    casualties.
  • The US grossly underestimated their resolve and
    their resourcefulness.

15
Who Is the Enemy?
The guerilla wins if he does not lose, the
conventional army loses if it does not win.
-- Mao Zedong
16
The Tet Offensive, January 1968
  • N. Vietnamese Army Viet Cong attack South
    simultaneously (67,000 attack 100 cities, bases,
    and the US embassy in Saigon)
  • Take every major southern city
  • U.S. ARVN (Army of the Republic of Vietnam
    South Vietnam) beat back the offensive
  • Viet Cong destroyed
  • N. Vietnamese army debilitated
  • BUTits seen as an American defeat by the media

17
The Tet Offensive, January 1968
18
Impact of the Tet Offensive
  • Domestic U.S. Reaction Disbelief, Anger,
    Distrust of Johnson Administration
  • Hey, Hey LBJ! How many kids did you kill
    today?

19
Impact of the Vietnam War
Johnson announces (March, 1968)
  • I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the
    nomination of my party for another term as your
    President.

20
American Morale Begins to Dip
  • Disproportionate representation of poor people
    and minorities
  • Severe racial problems
  • Major drugproblems
  • Officers in combat6 mo/in rear 6 mo

21
Anti-War Demonstrations
Student Protestors at Univ. of CA in Berkeley,
1968
Democratic Convention in Chicago, 1968
22
Nixon on Vietnam
  • Nixons 1968 Campaign promised an end to the war
    Peace with Honor
  • Appealed to the great Silent Majority
  • Vietnamization encourage the SV to take more
    responsibility for fighting the war
  • Expansion of the conflict ? The Secret War
    different opinions about the government structure
    Vietnam should have
  • Cambodia
  • Laos
  • Agent Orange chemicals sprayed on trees and
    plants that provided cover for enemy forces
    many veterans had health issues after exposure
    (cancer)

23
The Ceasefire, 1973
  • Conditions
  • U.S. to remove all troops
  • North Vietnam could leave troops already in S.V.
  • North Vietnam would resume war
  • No provision for POWs or MIAs
  • Last American troops left South Vietnam on March
    29, 1973
  • 1975 North Vietnam defeats South Vietnam
  • Saigon renamed Ho Chi Minh City

24
The Fall of Saigon
South Vietnamese Attempt to Flee the Country
25
The Fall of Saigon
April 30, 1975
America Abandons Its Embassy
26
The Fall of Saigon
North Vietnamese at the Presidential Palace
27
A United Vietnam
Formerly Saigon
28
  • Of the 2.7 million Americans that served in the
    Vietnam war
  • 300,000 were wounded in action
  • 75,000 were disabled
  • Of the casualties listed on The Wall,
    approximately 1,300 remain missing in action
  • 58,129 were killed
  • The average age was 19

29
  • On the Vietnamese side it is estimated
  • 1.1 million North Vietnamese and Viet Cong
    (Southern resistance soldiers) were killed
  • Over 2 million North and South Vietnamese
    citizens were killed

30
2,583 American POWs / MIAs still unaccounted
for today.
31
Andin the End.
Ho Chi Minh
  • If we have to
    fight, we will fight. You will kill
    ten of our men and we will kill one of
    yours, and in the end it will be you who tires of
    it.

32
Memorial to US Servicemen in Vietnam
33
Memorial to US Nurses in Vietnam
34
58,000
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