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The Vietnam War

How could the worlds most powerful country lose the vietnam war?

Joseph Wood

on 18 December 2016

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Transcript of The Vietnam War

Is it patriotic to protest one's government?
What are good reasons to fight a war?
How does war change our values?
The Vietnam War
Who has the right to rule?
How could the world’s most powerful country lose the Vietnam War?
Part of the Chinese Empire from 100 B.C.E to around 930 A.D.
In the 1600s, French missionaries arrive to convert the Vietnamese from Buddhism to Catholicisms.
In the 1850s, France sent troops to Vietnam to protect the Catholic missionaries.
After discovering the area's natural resources like coal, tin, and rubber France decided to make Vietnam a colony .
Japan's occupation during World War II
After the war, Viet Minh like Ho Chi Minh hoped Vietnam would once again become independent...
... but France ignored Ho's declaration of independence and continued to rule.
Who has the right to rule?
War is like ______________ because ______________.
(Pick a noun)
The United States did not back them because Ho Chi Minh was a communist...
Vietnamese citizens who wanted independence were called
The Vietnamese established their own dynasties and culture over the next 700 years.
People settle in Vietnam between 2000 and 1400 B.C.E.
The Viet Minh continued their war... now against the French.
In 1954,
a peace treaty was signed that
Vietnam in two
The North under Communist
Ho Chi Minh
The South under capitalist
Ngo Dinh Diem
In 1956 a vote was to be held to re-unify the country under one...
... but that vote was canceled when it looked like the communists would win.
How do American's show their anger with the Government?
...He wanted to confiscate land from the rich and divide it between the peasant farmers.
September 2, 1945
Declaration of Independence: Democratic Republic of Vietnam
by Ho Chi Minh

"All men are created equal. They are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness"
Vietnam Policy under
President's Eisenhower and Kennedy
Vietnam Policy under President Johnson
Vietnam Policy under Presidents Nixon and Ford
“If I’ve lost Cronkite,
I’ve lost America."
"How do you ask a man ..."
"Man, I ain't got no quarrel with them Viet Cong"
They helped the U.S. beat Japan during WWII.
Viet Minh
So Vietnam remained split, with the U.S. sending aid to the South.
Is it patriotic to protest one's government?
How does war change our values?
What are good reasons to fight a war?
"Communist control of all of Southeast Asia would render the U.S. position in the Pacific offshore island chain precarious and would seriously jeopardize fundamental U.S. security interests in the Far East...
... Southeast Asia especially Malaya and Indonesia, is the principal world source of natural rubber and tin, and a producer of petroleum and other strategically important commodities."
"Without consent and support of the peasants, failure is inevitable."

-China's communist leader
"The Vietnamese people want to have a free government. Nothing is better than independence and liberty... the Americans are capitalists, a few people take power. But in the Soviet Union the power is in the hands of all the people."

-Vietcong, 1957
John F. Kennedy becomes President
President Johnson was determined not to "lose" Vietnam.
He does not want to look weak against communism after the Bay of Pigs so he increases American forces in Vietnam
17,000 U.S. Military Forces in Vietnam
Are there good reasons for countries to go to war?
“take all necessary measures to repel armed attacks against the forces of the United States and to prevent further aggression.”
What are American values?
Americans in Vietnam
1955 - 100
1962 - 12,000
1963 - 15,000
1964 - 23,310
1965 - 184,310
Lyndon Johnson decided not to run for re-election in 1968.
The Tet Offensive
"the communists are unable to mount a major offensive...I am absolutely certain that whereas in 1965 the enemy was winning, today he is certainly losing...We have reached an important point when the end begins to come into view."

November 1967
Methods of Warfare
Agent Orange
Guerrilla Warfare
Operation Rolling Thunder
My Lia Massacre
The Draft
Not everyone in the South supported Diam. The
were communist who fought against Diam and the U.S.A.
The former WW2 General sends 100 "advisers" to South Vietnam to help train troops.
Domino Theory
Dwight Eisenhower's Farewell Address
He warns against an Industrial Military Complex (permanent war machine).
750-1,500 Americans are in Vietnam serving as Advisers
President Dwight Eisenhower
The Fall of Saigon
Diem is killed in a Coup attempt
The Vietnamese Empire
French Colonization
After Germany took over France during World War II, Germany gave control of Vietnam to their ally Japan.
Congress passes Gulf of Tonkin Resolution
23,000 U.S. Military forces in Vietnam
Johnson wins the election in a landslide
Presidential Election
Republican Richard Nixon
Democrat John Kennedy
Americans in Vietnam
1955 - 100
1965 - 184,310
1966 - 385,300
1967 - 485,600
1968 - 536,100
The Credibility Gap
Richard Nixon, promising a secret plan to end the Vietnam war, wins the 1968 election.
A turning point
The Vietnam War was like ______________ because ______________.
About 650,000 of the 3,000,000 soldiers who fought in Vietnam were drafted.
1965 - 52%
1966 - 48%
1967 - 44%
1968 - 37%
1969 - 32%
1971 - 28%
Vice President Hubert Humphries (D)
Former Vice President Richard Nixon (R)
Nearly 125,000 moved to Canada to "dodge the draft"
Presidential Election
The North Vietnamese Army Captures the the South's Capitol
Americans still in Vietnam were evacuated from the country
Vietnam was re-unifed under a Communist government.
Almost 1,000,000 people would leave Saigon within 2 years.
"expand, equip, and train South Vietnam's forces and assign to them an ever-increasing combat role, at the same time steadily reducing the number of U.S. combat troops."
Gulf of Tonkin Incident
The last American troops are removed from Vietnam
Bombing of Cambodia and Laos
Americans were not ready to fight a Guerrilla War in the Jungles. The Vietcong had been fighting one since 1941.
In fighting for Independence, the Vietcong were more motivated to win .
Americans turned against the war.
The tunnel system made it hard to know who we were fighting and where they were.
The Ho Chi Minh Trail
The trail was a way to get supplies from the North to the Vietcong
A set of dirt paths through Cambodia and Laos ending in South Vietnam.
"Cooling Down"
United States
Soviet Union
31 Attacks on South Vietnamese cities by the North Vietnamese Army and the Vietcong during the
Tet holiday
Full transcript