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Vietnam War

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Alex Beekman

on 19 March 2015

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Transcript of Vietnam War

Vietnam War and Anti-War
Alex Beekman and Juster Rivera
The Domino Theory
Speculated that the 'fall' of one state to communism will lead to the fall of surrounding states to communism
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Communist Regime was apparent in Northern Vietnam
US afraid of Domino Theory going into effect
Declaration of War imminent
Civil Rights movement occurred in parallel with Anti-War sentiments
Peace organizations were not popular in the nation until the Cold War
Students for a Democratic Society
Free Speech Movement
Background
French occupied Vietnam for 100 years
Dien Bien Phu Falls, forced to leave
Geneva Conference
Temporary partition at 17th parallel
National elections to be held in 1956
Background
Works Cited
"The Antiwar Movement." Ushistory.org. Independence Hall Association, 2014. Web. 04 Mar. 2015.
Barringer, Mark, and Tom Wells. "The Anti-War Movement in the United States." The Anti-War Movement in the United States. The Oxford Companion to American Military History, 1999. Web. 12 Mar. 2015.
"Vietnam War Protests." History.com. A&E Television Networks, 2015. Web. 21 Feb. 2015.
"Overview of the Vietnam War." Digital History. N.p., n.d. Web.
Brigham, Robert K. "Battlefield Vietnam: A Brief History." PBS. PBS, n.d. Web.
Communists supported the North
National Liberation Front (Viet Cong)
Ho Chi Minh
Originally anti-French
Allowed both Communist and Anti-Communist to join
Claimed to be separate from North Vietnam
Violent group, battled South Vietnam
Both opposed Ngo Dinh Diem
North Vietnam/Viet Cong
US not happy about outcome at Geneva
Creates South East Asian Treaty Org.
With US aid, Ngo Dinh Diem is elected president of South Vietnam
Immediately claimed North Vietnam wanted to take SV by force
Launched counterattack
Also, used CIA to identify and imprison suspected communists
SEATO
Guiding Questions
What caused strong opposition towards the War in Vietnam and how did Anti-war sentiment spread so widely across the nation?
What reasons did the US have for declaring War on Vietnam ?
What did the United States accomplish by engaging in a war with Vietnam?
US Involvement
November 1, 1963, Ngo Dinh Diem assassinated with US approval
Too radical
Originally US sent military advisors
16,000 by 1963
Viet Cong take over Mekong Delta in 1963
1965, LBJ escalated US involvement
Air strikes on North, troops sent (500,000 by 1968)
Gulf of Tonkin
August 2, 1964, USS Maddox engaged three NV torpedo boats
First involvement of US forces in Vietnam
Tet Offensive
January 31, 1968, NV launched waves of attacks on SV
70,000 soldiers attack major cities
Military defeat, but psychological victory
Got America to start negotiating (With Nixon, LBJ left office)
My Lai Massacre
March 16, 1968, US soldiers kill around 500 unarmed SV civilians
Misunderstanding
Dozens of other battles brought the final death toll to 400-800,000 soldiers in SV; 500,ooo-1,000,000 soldiers in NV; up to 2,000,000 civilians
Major Conflicts
Discriminatory drafting
Media portrayal of War in Vietnam moved people to oppose the devastating conflict
The validity of US involvement in Vietnam
Anti-War Movement Causes
End of the War
Secret peace meetings began in Paris in 1968
By 1972, Sec. of St. Henry Kissinger and NV representatives Xuan Thoy and Le Duc Tho agree in preliminary peace draft
SV President Nguyen van Thieu reject it
Fall of Saigon
Viet Cong captures Saigon on April 30, 1975
War is over
Ummm... We lost
Opposition to the Draft
Drafting age significantly reduced compared to drafting age of WWII soldiers
From 26 to 19
Young Americans sought to fight for more rights
They were allowed to die at 19, but were not allowed to drink or vote
Change was necessary and imminent
26th Amendment
Draft deferments were unfair to young men who could not afford higher education
Minorities saw combat more regularly than their white counterparts
Media during the Vietnam War
US Validity of Entering the War
The War was becoming too expensive
$25 billion per year
More men called for drafts to fuels war efforts
As many as 40,000 per month
College students attributed US involvement in Vietnam to Imperialism
Congress justified entering through Domino Theory
Domestic Issues plagues the nation during Vietnam War
Civil Rights Movement
Free Speech Movement
12 men burned their draft card to protest the war in New York in 1964
SDS, along with other activist groups , led the first anti-war march in Washington DC
Draft Card burning in University of California, Berkeley with members of Vietnam Day Committee
Draft Burning
Anti-War Groups
Students for Democratic Society
Founded in 1960
Students were a majority group of Anti-War protesters
Included students from UC Berkley, Shimer College and more
Hippies
Youth group in the 1960s
Counter-Beat Culture
Known for revolutionizing sex and drug use
African Americans
Black Panthers openly opposed US involvement in Vietnam
Pop Culture
John Lennon and Jimi Hendrix
Blowin' the Wind by Bob Dylan
Give Peace a Chance by John Lennon and Plastic Ono Band
Gallup Polls
Hippies
Group of anti-culture comrades against the War
Participated in 1968 Democratic National Convention Protests
Also refused to serve in the military and organized "teach-ins"
Human Be-in
San Francisco gathering of 1960s counter-culture
Organized by Michael Bowen
Focused on 1960s counterculture against War
Involved heavy "psychedelic" drug use even though it was banned the year before
Reception to Anti-War Movement
"The following year, Nixon claimed in a famous speech that anti-war protesters constituted a small–albeit vocal–minority that should not be allowed to drown out the “silent majority” of Americans. Nixon’s war policies divided the nation still further, however: In December 1969, the government instituted the first U.S. draft lottery since World War II, inciting a vast amount of controversy and causing many young men to flee to Canada to avoid conscription. Tensions ran higher than ever, spurred on by mass demonstrations and incidents of official violence such those at Kent State in May 1970, when National Guard troops shot into a group of protesters demonstrating against the U.S. invasion of Cambodia, killing four students.

In mid-1971, the publication of the first Pentagon Papers–which revealed previously confidential details about the war’s conduct–caused more and more Americans to question the accountability of the U.S. government and military establishments. In response to a strong anti-war mandate, Nixon announced the effective end to U.S. involvement in Southeast Asia in January 1973."
Effects of Anti-War Movement
Argued that Anti-War movement did not do much to affect the war
Did, however, change American Society
Less soldiers for War
Veterans opposed the war
Full transcript