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  • When Ho Chi Minh returned to Vietnam in 1940, Vietnam was ruled by the colonial rulers of France, and was later occupied by the Imperial Japanese Army during the Second World War With the Japanese defeated, the French was hoping to restore order in Vietnam, but then, underneath the lead of Ho Chi Minh, the Vietnamese fought the French for independence After 7 years of intense fighting, the French were finally defeated, at the battle of Dien Bien Phu in 1954
  • Although the French Army has air superiority, the French still got defeated, because the Vietminh soldiers have first hand knowledge about the terrain and the local hideouts, making French bombers and fighters unable to kill the Vietnamese soldiers Also, the French didn’t know that other Communist Countries like the Soviet Union and Communist China are supplying the Vietminh with heavy artillery and tanks, so when the Vietminh begun their siege of Dien Bien Phu, the French were caught off-guard, as heavy artillery shells exploded around them The Battle lasted 55 days, before the French surrendered
  • The main strategy used by the Vietminh is by hiding in foxholes and travelling around in tunnels, while the ground above is being bombed by artillery fire and French planes The Vietminh are very experienced soldiers that all master the art of camouflage, making them invisible to the French Air Force With the Vietminh soldiers invisible, the French positions fall, one by one, as the Vietminh soldiers advance
  • After the defeat of the French in the Battle of Dien Bien Phu, peace talks began in Geneva The Geneva agreement was signed by the French and North Vietnam These are the terms listed in the Geneva Agreement: France to grant independence to Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam Vietnam to be split in half – but only temporarily – by a partition line along the 17th parallel A demilitarized zone separating North and South Vietnam And to have free and democratic elections to be held in 1956 under the supervision of an International commission to reunite North and South Vietnam under a single leader
  • Ngo Dinh Diem was appointed Prime Minister by the Emperor Bao Dai Ho Chi Minh, the leader of the communists in the North was confident that he would win the free elections promised in the Geneva Agreement in 1956 But a year later, in 1957, Diem overthrown the Emperor Bao Dai, and transformed South Vietnam into a Republic, and named himself president Diem was a nationalist, who was supported by the United States With the US supporting Diem, Ho Chi Minh was not that confident that he would win the elections and become the one and only leader of a unified Vietnam But Diem didn’t hold any elections at all, saying that the North does not allow free elections, which was supported by the US government, although Diem didn’t really follow the Geneva Agreement.
  • Although Diem was supported by the US, Diem was not popular amongst the Vietnamese Farmers in the countryside who owned land from the Vietminh were evicted from their homes, and moved to the cities, losing their land And because of Diem’s religion, Roman Catholicism, many Vietnamese people disliked him and hated him, especially monks, who follow the Buddhist religion, Buddhism, who were not allowed to fly flags on the Buddha’s birthday, while Catholics are allowed to fly flags and get all the best jobs in the government Street protests began and riots started, as Diem’s popularity rapidly drops Monks protest against Diem by burning themselves in the street And soon near the end of 1963, Diem was assassinated by ARVN generals, who overthrown the government
  • The incident happened on August 2nd, 1964, when a US destroyer USS Maddox was attacked by 3 North Vietnamese Navy torpedo boats belonging to the 135th Torpedo Squadron There were no US casualties during the whole incident, but the North Vietnamese did suffer 4 dead and 6 wounded The US destroyer received minor damage from bullet rounds fired by the NV navy on board the boats The incident was used as an excuse by US President Lyndon B. Johnson to pass a solution through the Congress in response to the Gulf on Tonkin incident to take all necessary means of action against any further attacks from the North Vietnamese Johnson needed full support, and his justification came on the 6-7th of Feb.1965, when the Vietcong attacked a US base in Pleiku, making the US public see the point in sending troops into Vietnam
  • They hid in underground tunnels and stored weapons, food supplies, and ammunition. Some were dug as bomb shelters, others were huge strongholds where hundreds of armed troops could live for weeks, because they were well hidden. When the Americans thought they had cleared an area or when they shut themselves in their ‘safe’ bunks surrounded by barbed wire, the Vietcong would come out of their hideouts and attack (usually at night-time)
  • Booby traps were used a lot in the area of the hideouts in-case any Americans were to discover their position. Some of the traps used were called Punji traps. The Vietcong dug holes in the ground and put sharpened bamboo stakes, covered with poison, so when an American came onto their territory, they would fall in and die, or get injured and get blood poisoning Another trap used in the war was trip wire. The Vietcong attached wires to two trees opposite each other and when someone ran into it would set off a grenade. Also for trip wires, they could attach spiked balls or maces to a rope and when the trip wire was triggered the rope would snap and the weapon would slice down and kill anyone in its path.
  • Traps were another expertise of the Vietcong besides their skill in camouflaging An estimation of approx. 11% of American deaths are caused by traps, and 17% of American injuries Traps similar to the Punji trap were also used during the war
  • The Vietnam war was mainly fought over in tropical conditions Swamps, paddy fields, jungles, and mountains surrounded the country Weather conditions were harsh
  • Because of the tropical conditions in Vietnam, the Vietcong and the NVA had an advantage against US soldiers who were not adapted to Vietnam’s terrain It took a large amount of precious time for the Americans to adapt to Vietnam’s conditions, as they were trained in a different environment And because of this unfamiliar environment, the US army relied heavily on helicopters and APCs (Armoured Personal Carriers) Helicopters were used as transports, armoured gunships, and troop carriers ‘ choppers’ were also manly used in search and destroy missions, to overcome the difficulties of travelling on land Over 2200 helicopters were lost in the war, during battle APCs were also used heavily, because of its ability to travel on water and land, and provide protection to the infantry inside the vehicle
  • Vietcong members were all men and women who lived in or fled from South Vietnam The Vietcong fighters mainly fought night-time guerilla warfare, unlike their North Vietnamese Army (NVA) counter-parts, who fight conventional warfare, although they have similar abilities as the Vietcong NVA units are all recruits from the North, unlike the Vietcong Vietcong forces were mainly concentrated at the countryside, although Vietcong fighters do stay in the cities as saboteurs and terrorists Sabotages by the VC reminded the people why the war was being fought
  • Vietcong Tactics were divided into 3 main stages: 1: Infiltrate the countryside: Get to know the people, gain their trust, spread the idea of revolution, and signing up new recruits 2:a) Fight guerrilla warfare: -Ambush Enemy vehicles, isolated units and outposts -Sabotage, terrorism, and murder -Plant mines and traps b) Camouflage: -move around undetected -the use of tunnels and foxholes to avoid US pursue 3: Open warfare: If kindness didn’t work to gain the people’s trust, they use terrorism and murder, torturing officials and executing spies When the Vietcong gained control of the countryside, they immediately launched guerrilla campaigns against US and ARVN troops
  • Guerrilla war means “little war” in Spanish Guerillas were members of an irregular armed force that fights a stronger force by sabotage and harassment Local guerrillas were given only a basic minimum of infantry training But if they were to become main attack force unit, they would receive up to a month of advanced training Local forces also designed primitive weapons, some designed to frighten intruders, but others were extremely dangerous American troops were new to this type of warfare, because they were mainly trained to fight conventional warfare, and that is why the US Army carried-out search and destroy missions
  • By the mid-1960s, most of the main force Vietcong troops were armed with Chinese versions of the Russian AK-47, which is also known as the Type 56 assault rifle They used a range of effective Soviet and Chinese light and medium machine guns, as well as a range of sniper rifles supplied by the Soviet Union They also used heavy machine guns as an anti-air weapon against incoming US helicopters The Vietcong and the NVA both used weapons like recoilless-rifles, and highly effective Rocket Propelled Grenades (RPGs) During the war, other countries in the Warsaw pact also supplied guns to the NVA and VC Captured American weapons were also used by the Vietnamese, such as the M16, M1 carbine, and the M1918A2 30. caliber Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR)
  • Vietcong had no uniform, making them looking the same as normal Vietnamese peasants, because of their identical black pyjamas and wide straw hats The Americans had a hard time distinguishing the real VC fighters from the normal Vietnamese peasants Vietcong forces avoided large-scale confrontations with the enemy, because they knew they cannot win against the US air force, as well as their other military advantages Vietcong fighters instead, moved on to being experts of camouflage, disguise, ambushes, tricks, and traps Whenever chased or hunted by the US troops, the Vietcong always had the ability of merging into the landscape and vanishing into thin air
  • Vietcong fighters built and dug tunnels to evade American air attacks Tunnels developed from basic tunnels and hideouts to ambush enemy units to a vast tunnel system By the end of the war, tunnels have merged into systems that are as long as 250km Inside the tunnel system, there are underground kitchens, weapon stores, dormitories, hospitals, and resting areas The tunnel system showed the determination of the Vietcong troops, and not their demoralization from US air attacks Tunnels were also used as supply routes During the war, supply routes were built from North Vietnam to South Vietnam One of the most famous supply routes was called the Ho Chi Minh Trail
  • The Ho Chi Minh Trail was a route way between North and South Vietnam stretching as far as 1000km long This trail enabled North Vietnam to supply guerrillas, weapons, equipment and food to the Vietcong in the South The trail is mainly around ridges, valleys, and hills in the Kingdoms of Laos and Cambodia The trail was able to support troops not only in south Vietnam, but other places in Vietnam itself too The Ho Chi Minh Trail was not a single route way, but a system of routes, with dummy paths and decoys to confuse enemy aircraft The Communists called the trail the Truong Son Strategic Supply Route, named after a mountain range in Vietnam The Ho Chi Minh Trail had routes for trucks, paths for foot and bicycle traffic, and river transportation systems
  • The Ho Chi Minh Trail was the main supply route for NV to supply the VC in the south In some parts of the trail, the trail is 80km wide A work force of 40,000 people were stationed along the trail to keep the supply vehicles moving Much of the trail was hidden from the air underneath the layers of canopy in the forest The trail was quoted as “one of the great achievements of military engineering of the 20th century” Life and work was hard on the Ho Chi Minh Trail, US and ARVN warplanes attacked supply convoys when the weather was fine, when the weather was poor, they were soaked to the skin Packs carried by soldiers doubled in weight from the monsoon rains in the rainforests Mosquitoes attacked the soldiers after the US warplanes did
  • Most of the weapons and supplies came from the Communist allies of North Vietnam Soviet Union: The Soviet Union supplied most of the aircraft, heavy guns, and Surface-to-air missiles (SAM) Communist China: China supplied most of the fuel, ammunition, firearms, and food And finally, the Third most important supplier, the US United States Of America: Large amounts of American equipment fell into enemy hands during the war The captured equipment was recycled and re-used Unexploded shells were dismantled and the explosives inside were used to make Vietcong booby traps and bombs
  • On 11th of Feb. 1965, the US launched a bombing campaign against the NVA called Operation Rolling Thunder The Main Cities in North Vietnam were constantly being bombed by US B-52 Heavy Bombers This is called saturation bombing, as Americans thought that the more they bombed, the quicker NV will fall to its knees, but quite the opposite, the NVA morale increased and their determination strengthened from US air raids Hanoi and other areas in NV was soon quoted by US aircrews as “the most heavily defended region the world has ever seen.” Over 1,400 US war planes were shot down in NV territory between 1965 and 1968
  • The NVA in North Vietnam used 3 main strategies to engage US fighters 1) Anti-Aircraft Guns: These Anti-Aircraft Guns were manned by eager gun crews who were responsible for most of the plane hits 2) SAMs (Surface-To-Air Missiles): These missiles supplied by the Soviet Union were used, but it was proved to be less effective than AA guns, because SAMs can be easily evaded by US pilots using emergency counter-measures 3) Soviet MIG-17 and MIG-21PF fighters were used by the NVA to engage and intercept incoming US fighters with air-to-air missiles, flown by NVA pilots who were highly trained and skilled, and were respected by the American pilots who were equally skilled
  • The reason why the Americans had to use chemical weapons is because planes and helicopters found it very difficult to target Vietcong units concealed underneath the Vietnamese forests They Used 4 Main methods to remove the cover provided to the VC: 1) Napalm: This was a chemical substance that is mixed with gasoline or other flammable liquids to produce a sticky gel, which sticks to objects or victims when dropped from planes and ignited by white phosphorus Napalm was used to burn away leaves and vegetation in the forests But because of its feature of being sticky, some unfortunate civilians suffered serious burns when napalm stuck to them after it was dropped from US warplanes
  • 2) Herbicides and weed-killers were used to kill the plants and vegetation 3)Dropping heavy bombs at trees to turn them into smaller fragments Bombs such as the BLU-82 or known as “daisy-cutters” were used during the war on rainforests to clear landing spots for helicopters and artillery guns 4) American troops also used giant mechanical ploughs to tear down/up-root trees Then the US Army came up with a solution to effectively take down trees They began using weed-killers or known as defoliants, which kills leaves on trees The American air force then launched a series of defoliant missions known as the “Ranch Hand Operations”
  • The spraying of these defoliants began from 1962-1971, with 20% of Vietnam’s forests being sprayed over a 9 year period During these defoliant missions, a range of colour-coded defoliants were used (these defoliants were known as “Rainbow Herbicides”) The most well-known defoliant out of the “Rainbow Herbicides” was the chemical defoliant called “Agent Orange” Approx. 77,000,000L of Agent Orange were sprayed over the Mekong Delta Region and parts of Vietnam Unfortunately, Agent Orange contains a poison that is highly toxic called dioxin The toxic chemical poisoned the environment and contaminated the soil and the people who handled the chemical when it was loaded onto the planes in the US airbases
  • After the defoliant was sprayed, the affected people in the area sprayed began vomiting and having headaches, and Vietnamese doctors are beginning to become concerned about the situation The vomiting and the headaches were just the short-term effects Long-term effects caused by the chemical are things like: Birth defects Serious skin complaints Damage to the brain development of babies exposed to the chemical Over 25,000 sq km of rainforest and cropland was ruined by this nasty defoliant Mangrove swamps in the Mekong Delta area were almost destroyed Agent Orange was responsible for over 400,000 deaths and disabilities, and approx. 500,000 children who were born with birth defects because of the exposure to the chemical
  • Search and Destroy missions began in 1966 The aim of these missions were to hunt and eliminate NVA units and Vietcong fighters hiding underneath the cover of forests Huge Supply bases were built to support inland ‘firebases’ for search and destroy missions The Main supply bases were built on the coast, like the Danang and Cam Ranh base, so they can be reinforced by sea if attacked Helicopters were widely used for search and destroy, as the environment in Vietnam was not suitable for tanks Operation Junction City – One of the largest offensive search and destroy missions launched on the 22nd of Feb. 1967
  • Because of the identical clothes worn by the Vietcong and normal Vietnamese peasants, The Americans have devised a way of detecting Vietcong suspects The one and only method to detect Vietcong fighters is to either search and find weapons, equipment, and food supplies, or catch the person at night holding a rifle, or other weapons Vietcong suspects from search and destroy missions were treated brutally and tortured Vietcong suspects were also interrogated in hidden compartments, while an informant identifies the person as a VC member or not After the interrogation is done, the US soldiers call for an air strike and level the villages with napalm, after they exit the area
  • On the 16th March, 1968 – 9 black helicopter gunships landed in My Lai Village, 120km away from the large supply base of Danang along the coast 3 platoons of US marines left the choppers on a search and destroy mission The US soldiers shot everything in sight when they reached the village Children, women, men, and animals were shot ruthlessly by the US troops Some people were still moving after their legs were shot off After 18 months, the truth of the massacre was revealed to the world, many people were horrified, while others believed that the incident was fake Soldiers who were involved all said that they were just “following orders”, and that if they don’t follow the orders, they will be “court-martialled” Official estimates say that not less than 175 civilians were killed, but the death toll could have been as high as 400 or 500 deaths The soldiers were briefed that everything in the village were either Vietcong or Vietcong sympathizers Missions like the one in My Lai village were executed all over Vietnam at the time, so there was no reason for the US to think that My Lai Village was any different
  • “ Body Counts” were done after a battle or a mission, to see how many of the enemy are killed Many Us soldiers died in combat, but US casualties were small, compared to Vietnamese casualties Because of the high casualties on the Vietnamese side, the US officers thought that they were winning the War of Attrition (War to used up all the enemy’s resources faster than using up your own)
  • These are the statistics of the casualties suffered on the US side. You can see a peak in 1968, when the troop level was at its highest, and the number of casualties as well.
  • These are the statistics of the casualties suffered from the NV and VC side. Again you can see a peak in 1968, when over 200,000 soldiers were killed in action.
  • January, 1968, General Westmoreland was convinced that the Americans will win the war, because of the amount of casualties suffered from the NVA and VC side The Vietcong had lost almost 100,000 soldiers in 1967 By 1968, there are over 500,000 US troops stationed in Vietnam Nguyen Van Thieu had been elected President of South Vietnam in 1967 The Vietcong and NVA had lost every battle against the US army and the ARVN US soldiers carried out Search and Destroy missions in the jungles while the ARVN protected the South Vietnamese Cities US soldiers thought victory was in sight The attack began in the morning of Wednesday 31st of Jan. 1968
  • This campaign was named Tet, after the holiday known as the Tet Festival, which is the Lunar New Year for the Vietnamese and the most important holiday of the year The Tet Offensive was the largest military operation launched by the Communist forces in the whole war The attack began in the morning of the 31st of January 1968 This attack was well organized and coordinated Over 80,000 communist soldiers from the NVA and VC attacked more than 100 towns and cities at the same time The targets in this attack covered 36 out of 44 provincial capitals, 5 out of 6 independent cities, 72 out of 245 district towns, and finally, the Southern Vietnamese Capital of Saigon The attack surprised the US Army and the ARVN, but soon they fought back against the communists and pushed them back The Communist forces were exhausted and suffered heavy casualties, after the US and ARVN troops fought back
  • Although the attack was a failure for the communist forces, the attack also killed many US and ARVN troops, causing the public in the US homeland to think that the Vietnam war was a waste of US lives The original plan and aim was to start uprisings in the South, but instead, the people in the US homeland urged the government to end the war, forcing the country to start peace talks The North Vietnamese government agreed to join the peace talks after the Tet Offensive At least 30,000 Vietcong fighters have been killed in the Offensive, which was a heavy blow to the Vietcong, and they never really managed to recover from that blow, so the fighting after the offensive was mostly handled by the NVA Over 100,000 VC and NVA units were killed during the offensive
  • The ceasefire agreement from the peace talks gave authorization to the Americans to give South Vietnam air support if attacked by North Vietnam Although the agreement gave permission for air support, the US help was half-hearted, and soon the North Vietnamese pushed steadily southwards People who had opposed the Communists fled in terror before their advance, while they jammed the roads leading south Along the coast, swarms of little boats pushed off, awash with frantic refugees
  • The last US combat troops left South Vietnam in March 1973, two months after the ceasefire was signed But the agreement allowed 150,000 Communist soldiers to stay in the country while the South Vietnamese were unable to drive them out American aid was dwindling, while Soviet help for the North had grown considerably As the fighting continued all through 1973 and 1974, the South Vietnamese soldiers slowly showed their vulnerability without American Aid
  • In Saigon, US helicopters flew 8000 of their Southern Vietnamese supporters to safety aboard American warships anchored offshore The last guards at the American embassy were airlifted off the roof as looters broke down the main door And on the 30th of April, the Northern Vietnamese army captured Saigon, and the Communist victory was complete
  • And on the 8th of August 1974, President Nixon resigned and Vice President Gerald Ford took his place No-one could tell whether the new President would continue to support South Vietnam, and this uncertainly encouraged the Communists to risk a final assault on the Southern Vietnam Capital of Saigon And on the January of 1975, the North Vietnam began a full-scale general offensive against the South The Vietnam War officially ended, after the City of Saigon was seized by Northern Vietnamese Army and the Vietcong 30th of April, 1975 The Vietnamese not only won the war, but they also won their freedom and independence

Vietnam war new version Vietnam war new version Presentation Transcript

  • By: Esmond, Ryan, Wing Fung, JH, Nikhil, Justin, Monika, Ellen, Christine, Kimmy, Prudence
  • HOW DID THE VIETNAMESE DEFEAT THE FRENCH?
    • Ho Chi Minh returned to Vietnam in 1940
    • Vietnam was occupied by the Japanese during the Second World War
    • After the war, the French wanted to restore order in Vietnam
    • The French were then defeated at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu
  • Battle of Dien Bien Phu
    • The Battle lasted 55 days and then the French surrendered
    • The Vietminh had first hand knowledge about the terrain and the local hideouts
    • Other communist countries like the Soviet Union and Communist China are supporting the Vietminh
  • Strategy used by the Vietminh in The Battle of Dien Bien Phu
    • Main strategy of the Vietminh was to avoid direct confrontation with enemy fire
    • They all master the art of camouflaging, making them invisible to the French
    • And soon after, the French were defeated by the Vietminh
  • The Geneva Agreement
    • After the French were defeated at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu, the French was willing to talk peace with the North Vietnamese
    • This was known as the Geneva Agreement
    • The list of terms covered the independence of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam
    • And splitting North and South Vietnam with a demilitarized zone along the 17 th parallel
  • Ngo Dinh Diem
    • Ngo Dinh Diem – appointed as Prime Minister by Emperor Bao Dai
    • Diem called himself President after overthrowing Emperor Bao Dai a year later, in 1957
    • Diem had the US supporting him, because he was nationalist, and Ho Chi Minh was communist
    • Diem would not hold any elections, saying that the North does not allow free elections
  • Protests against Ngo Dinh Diem
    • The Vietnamese and Farmers disliked the new President, Diem
    • Farmers in the countryside lost their land from the Vietminh and were forced to move into the cities
    • Religion was also another main reason why the Vietnamese didn’t like their new President
    • Diem was Roman Catholic and the Vietnamese were mainly Buddhists
    • Assassinated by ARVN generals who overthrown the government near the end of 1963
  • The Gulf of Tonkin Incident
    • This incident involved a US destroyer – USS Maddox and 3 NV Navy torpedo boats belonging to the 135 th Torpedo Squadron
    • No US casualties in the whole incident
    • But the NV suffered 4 sailors killed and 6 others wounded
    • This incident was used as an excuse by President Johnson to get support from the congress in sending troops to Vietnam
  • Strategies Used by the NVA and Vietcong during the war
    • Guerrilla War
    • The use of tunnels was also another way to
    • avoid direct contact with enemy soldiers
    • Bomb shelters, underground strongholds, and
    • weapon stores are found in the tunnel systems
    • When the time is correct, the hiding soldiers
    • will come out of their tunnels and attack
  • Booby Traps
    • Booby traps were used as a defensive measure against US troops in the jungle
    • The most well known trap was called the Punji Trap
    • It was a hole dug by the VC with sharp bamboo stakes covered in poison waiting at the bottom of the hole
    • These traps were lethal, and were capable of killing a soldier instantly
    • Trip wires were used a lot during the war as well, as a trip wire can set off a grenade when a rather careless soldier walks and trips on the wire
    • Other weapons can be attached to the wires as well, such as sharp maces, and spike balls etc.
  • Traps
    • Side-closing Punji trap:
    • A simple trap that is very cheap to make and very commonly used
    • Basically a small hole covered with leaf and sticks, and the victim's foot is impaled when stood on
    • Spike Board:
    • The spike board is a board fixed on the sides of a pit, like a see-saw, with one side spiked
    • So when the victim steps on the side without spikes, the other side full of spikes will smash into the victim’s face or chest
  • “ Vietnam is a terrible country for fighting”
    • Vietnam was a new environment for the Americans to fight in
    • ‘ It is a terrible country for fighting, The jungle tree and the vines that cover the sharp ridges and the deep valleys in the mountains make the military movement difficult. Bombs explode harmlessly on the thick jungle canopy’ – An American soldier
    • Also, a constant drizzle of monsoon rain kept all the soldiers soaked
    • ‘ for five days it rained without let up.’ – A Vietnamese soldier
  • The Geography of Vietnam
    • The Vietcong and NVA fighters were already adapted to the climate of Vietnam
    • The humid and hot conditions forced the Americans to spend time to adapt to the climate
    • The US Army relied on helicopters and APCs to travel around the landscape of Vietnam (APC -> Armoured Personal Carriers)
    • Helicopters played a big part in search and destroy missions
    • Helicopters were mainly used as transports, and supply helicopters
    • Over 2200 helicopters were lost in the war during combat
  • Vietcong
    • Vietcong – consists of men and women who lived in or fled from South Vietnam
    • They fought guerrilla warfare, usually at night-time
    • These guerrilla fighters are concentrated at the countryside
    • Guerrilla fighters in the cities have a role as saboteurs and terrorists
  • Vietcong Tactics
    • Vietcong Tactics were divided into 3 main stages:
    • 1: Infiltrate the countryside:
    • Get to know the people, gain their trust, spread the idea of revolution, and signing up new recruits
    • 2:a) Fight guerrilla warfare:
    • -Ambush Enemy vehicles, isolated units and outposts
    • -Sabotage, terrorism, and murder
    • -Plant mines and traps
    • b) Camouflage:
    • -move around undetected
    • -the use of tunnels and foxholes to avoid US pursue
    • 3: Open warfare:
    • If kindness didn’t work to gain the people’s trust, they use terrorism and murder, torturing officials and executing spies
    • When the Vietcong gained control of the countryside, they immediately launched guerrilla campaigns against US and ARVN troops
  • Guerrilla Warfare
    • The main strategy in guerrilla warfare is to avoid direct exposure with the enemy at all times
    • And try to fight the stronger enemy by sabotage and small scale attacks (eg. ambushes)
    • Local guerrilla fighters were given a basic amount of infantry training
    • Local guerrillas also invented and designed simple weapons that can either kill or frighten an enemy
  • Weapons used by the Vietcong
    • By the mid-1960s, most of the main VC troops were armed with automatic rifles supplied by Communist China and the Soviet Union
    • The Type 56 assault rifle was a Chinese version of the Russian AK-47
    • Heavy machine guns and highly effective Rocket Propelled Grenades were used as an Anti-air weapon against US helicopters
    • Captured American weapons were re-used by the NVA and VC
  • Camouflaged Vietcong – Friend or Foe?
    • The Vietcong had no uniform, making them look the same as South Vietnamese peasants
    • Americans cannot tell the difference
    • VC fighters became experts in camouflage and other things, because they knew they cannot win against the US air force
    • When ever a group of VC fighters are being chased by US troops on search and destroy missions, they can always disappear into thin air
  • Vietcong Tunnels
    • Tunnels were first dug by the Vietcong as bomb shelters
    • Tunnels then developed into a very sophisticated system of strongholds
    • Some tunnels are as long as 250km
    • The tunnels were a sign of the strong will and determination of the Vietcong
    • Tunnels were also used as supply routes
  • The Ho Chi Minh Trail
    • The Ho Chi Minh Trail was a supply route from North Vietnam to South Vietnam crossing through the countries of Laos and Cambodia
    • The route stretches as far as 1000km long
    • The trail was called the Truong Son Strategic Supply Route, named after a mountain range in Vietnam
    • The trail gave an option to North Vietnam to supply everything the VC needed in the south
    • The trail can also reach other places in Vietnam too
  • Supplying the Vietcong with the trail
    • A work force of 40,000 people were stationed along the rail to keep the supply vehicles moving
    • Most of the trail have been carefully hidden from the air
    • The trail was quoted as “one of the great achievements of military engineering of the 20 th century”
    • Sacks carrying the supplies doubled in weight from the monsoon rains in the forest
  • Supplying North Vietnam
    • Most of the weapons and supplies came from the Communist allies of North Vietnam
    • Soviet Union:
    • The Soviet Union supplied most of the aircraft, heavy guns, and Surface-to-air missiles (SAM)
    • Communist China:
    • China supplied most of the fuel, ammunition, firearms, and food
    • And finally, the Third most important supplier, the US
    • United States Of America:
    • Large amounts of American equipment fell into enemy hands during the war
    • The captured equipment was recycled and re-used
    • Unexploded shells were dismantled and the explosives inside were used to make Vietcong booby traps and bombs
  • NVA’s Defence against US fighters
    • Operation Rolling Thunder was a series of bombing missions launched on the 11 th of Feb. 1965
    • Saturation bombing from B-52 Heavy bombers at targets in NV
    • Over 1,400 US war planes were shot down in NV airspace between 1965 and 1968
  • Air Defence strategies used by NV
    • The NVA in North Vietnam used 3 main strategies to engage US fighters
    • 1) Anti-Aircraft Guns: These Anti-Aircraft Guns were manned by eager gun crews who were responsible for most of the plane hits
    • 2) SAMs (Surface-To-Air Missiles): These missiles supplied by the Soviet Union were used
    • 3) Soviet MIG-17 and MIG-21PF fighters were used by the NVA to engage and intercept incoming US fighters with air-to-air missiles
  • Chemical Warfare
    • Chemical weapons were used to remove the cover that conceals the VC
    • With the cover removed, the US planes can target the VC units with ease
    • They Used 4 Main methods to remove the cover provided to the VC:
    • 1) Napalm: A gel like chemical substance mixed with flammable liquids to create a sticky gel that burns aggressively when ignited
    • Napalm was used to burn away leaves from plants
  • The Use of Chemical Weapons
    • 2) Herbicides and weed-killers were used
    • 3)Dropping heavy bombs at trees to create bare land without any vegetation
    • 4) American troops also used giant mechanical ploughs to tear down/up-root trees
    • Then the US Army came up with a solution to effectively take down trees
    • They began using weed-killers or known as defoliants, which kills leaves on trees
    • The American air force then launched a series of defoliant missions known as the “Ranch Hand Operations”
  • Agent Orange
    • A range of colour-coded defoliants were used during defoliant missions (also known as “Rainbow Herbicides”)
    • Agent Orange was the most well-known defoliant out of the colour-coded defoliant chemicals
    • Approx. 77,000,000L of Agent Orange were sprayed over the Mekong Delta Area and other parts of Vietnam
    • Agent Orange contains a poison called dioxin
    • The toxic chemical poisoned the areas sprayed and also the people who handled the chemical in the airbases
  • The effects of Agent Orange
    • Short term effects suffered from victims were symptoms like vomiting and headaches
    • Long term effects suffered include:
    • Birth defects
    • Serious skin complaints
    • And damage to brain development of minors exposed to the chemical
    • Agent Orange was responsible for over 400,000 deaths and disabilities, and approx. 500,000 children who were born with birth defects
  • Search and Destroy Missions
    • The first search and destroy missions began in 1966
    • Search and Destroy Missions were carried out to hunt and eliminate any VC units hiding in the rainforests
    • Huge supply bases were built to support inland ‘firebases’
    • Helicopters were depended on heavily, as a form of transportation
    • Operation Junction City was one of the largest offensive search and destroy missions launched on the 22 nd of Feb. 1967
  • Vietcong Suspects
    • The Americans have designed a unique way of detecting VC suspects
    • The person is a VC suspect if you find weapons, food supplies, and equipment in their homes
    • Or if you catch the person at night holding a rifle or a weapon
    • Vietcong suspects from search and destroy were treated brutally and tortured
    • VC suspects were interrogated in hidden compartments
  • The My Lai Massacre
    • On the 16 th of March, 1968, 9 black helicopter gunships landed in My Lai Village, 120km away from Danang Supply base
    • 3 platoon of US marines left the helicopters on a search and destroy mission
    • The 3 platoons of soldiers ruthlessly killed everything that moved in the village
    • The public were horrified when the truth was revealed
    • People are beginning to think that this war is not worth fighting
    • Official estimates that not less than 175 people were killed
    • But the death toll could have been as high as 400 or 500
  • Body Counts – Are we winning?
    • Body counts were done after a battle to see how many of the enemy is dead
    • But because of the high demand of dead VC and NVA units, US unit commanders in search and destroy missions often counted civilians as VC or NVA units
    • A quote from a marine lieutenant: “…The pressure on unit commanders to produce enemy corpses was intense and led to such practices as counting civilians as Vietcong ‘If it’s dead and Vietnamese, it’s Vietcong’ was the rule in the jungle”
  • Statistics of US casualties Year Troop level Casualties 1962 11,000 52 1963 16,000 118 1964 23,000 206 1965 184,000 1,863 1966 385,300 6,143 1967 485,600 11,153 1968 586,100 16,592 1969 475,200 11,616 1970 334,600 6,081 1971 156,800 2,357 1972 24,200 641
  • Statistics of NVA and VC casualties
    • Total casualties:
    • 1,100,000
    • Total wounded:
    • 600,000
    Year Casualties 1966 71,473 1967 133,484 1968 208,254 1969 132,051 1970 86,591 1971 19,320 1972 4,261
  • Tet Offensive – Are the US winning?
    • By looking at the casualties, General Westmoreland from the US side was confident that they would win
    • The VC had lost nearly 100,000 men in 1967
    • And with the VC casualties rising, the number of US troops in Vietnam are also rising
    • By 1968, there are over 500,000 US troops stationed in Vietnam
    • The Tet Offensive attack began in the morning of Wednesday 31 st of Jan. 1968
  • The Tet Offensive
    • This assault campaign was named Tet, after the Tet festival, which is the Lunar New Year for the Vietnamese
    • The Offensive was the largest military operation launched by the communists
    • Over 80,000 communist soldiers from the NVA and VC attack more than 100 towns and cites at once
    • The attack surprised the US Army and the ARVN, but soon they fought back against the communists and pushed them back
  • Public Reaction to the Offensive
    • Although the attack was a failure to the communists, they achieved a different goal
    • Their target was to start uprisings in the South, but instead, the people back in the US are protesting with an anti-war attitude
    • The US government then had no choice but to start peace talks
    • At least 30,000 VC units were killed in the offensive, which was a big blow to the VC, and they never really recovered
    • Over 100,000 VC and NVA units were killed in the Offensive
  • HOW DID THE NORTH VIETNAMESE WIN THE WAR?
    • A ceasefire was agreed and gave authorization to the US to give air support if SV is attacked by NV
    • As the US help was decreasing, the communists advanced south, jamming roads
    • People who opposed the communists were killed
    • Refugees flee the area in little boats, while the ARVN officers and soldiers retreat as well
  • THE WITHDRAWAL OF US TROOPS – DECIDING THE FATE OF SOUTH VIETNAM
    • The last US combat troops departed South Vietnam in March 1973
    • The withdrawal of US troops meant that all the fighting was now handed over to the ARVN
    • Meanwhile, the communist allies of NV are still supporting them with all the supplies they need
    • As the communists are pushing downwards, the ARVN showed their vulnerability with American Aid
  • AMERICAN WITHDRAWAL- COMMUNIST VICTORY
    • In Saigon, US helicopters flew 8000 of their Southern Vietnamese supporters to safety aboard American warships anchored offshore
    • The last guards at the American embassy were airlifted off the roof as looters broke down the main door
    • And on the 30th of April, the Northern Vietnamese army captured Saigon, and the Communist victory was complete
  • HOW DID THE WAR END?
    • On the 8 th of August 1974, President Nixon resigned and Vice President Gerald Ford took his place
    • The new president was uncertain whether to support South Vietnam or not
    • And on the Jan. of 1975, the NV began its final assault on the remaining resistance from the ARVN
    • And on the 30 th of April, 1975, the war is officially ended, as the Capital of Saigon was captured by the NVA
    • The Vietnamese not only won the war, but they also won their freedom and independence
  • Credits
    • Research:
    • Causes: Justin, Nikhil, Wing Fung, J.H.
    • Strategies: Esmond, Monika, Ellen, Kimmy, Christine
    • Results: Prudence, Ryan
    • Power-point: Esmond, Ellen, Monika, Prudence
    • Script: Kimmy, Prudence
    • Thank you for your undivided attention!!!