Indochina Weeks 8-11
Tet Offensive 1968 <ul><li>The North’s strategy: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In January 1968 North Vietnam launched a major offe...
The Offensive <ul><li>US/ARVN had received warnings that ‘something big’ was about to happen. These were downplayed or ign...
The Results <ul><li>Militarily, NVA and VC forces suffered severe losses and the war did not end. The Tet Offensive had fa...
Anti-war movements in the U.S <ul><li>1960s- Social Division  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>For Americans, the Vietnam War became ...
Cont… <ul><li>In 1968 divisions in American society were extensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>President Johnson, broken by the...
Defeat of South Vietnam
Spread of the Vietnam War to Cambodia
 
Background <ul><li>Cambodian history features a continued struggle between the Hindu and the Buddhist. Both have created m...
20 th  Century <ul><li>In 1953, Cambodia managed to gain independence and was obtained through the skillful diplomacy of K...
King Norodom  Sihanouk General Lon Nol
Rise to Power of the Khmer Rouge <ul><li>The Lon Nol regime was directly tied to US aid and succumbed to internal politica...
Between 1970 & 1975 <ul><li>Cambodia was engulfed by the Indochina conflict between 1970 and 1975. Around 60,000 people di...
Khmer Rouge <ul><li>As the Khmer Rouge knew well, there were no American plans to attack the city. The deception was a plo...
Cont… <ul><li>The city dwellers of Phnom Penh and other Cambodian cities, on the other hand, were seen as  new people . Ne...
Cont… <ul><li>As new people were forced out of the urban centers they soon learned of the new rules that were being impose...
“ When the smiling Khmer Rouge Army occupied Cambodia’s capital Phnom Penh on the morning of Thursday 17 April 1975 their ...
Pol Pot “ I did not join the resistance movement to kill people, to kill the nation. Look at me now. Am I a savage person?...
Pol Pot <ul><li>Saloth Sar  , also known as  Pol Pot , was the leader of the communist movement known as the Khmer Rouge. ...
Cont… <ul><li>Following Pol Pot’s proclamation of ‘Democratic Kampuchea’ he shut the country of from the rest of the world...
Tuol Sleng- Prison S-21 <ul><li>Torture and execution became facts of life in Kampuchea. Tuol Sleng, Phnom Penh’s high sch...
 
 
Tuol Sleng Rules <ul><li>1. You must answer accordingly to my question. Don’t turn them away.   </li></ul><ul><li>2. Don’t...
The ‘Killing Fields’ at Choeung Ek  <ul><li>The majority of the victims were trucked out to Choeung Ek, at about 8 or 9 o’...
 
 
Outcomes for Indochina <ul><li>The U.S retaliated against Vietnam for nearly twenty years via international embargoes and ...
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Indochina

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A brief overview of the end of the Vietnam war and the war in Cambodia, including the impact of the Khmer Rouge.

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Indochina

  1. 1. Indochina Weeks 8-11
  2. 2. Tet Offensive 1968 <ul><li>The North’s strategy: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In January 1968 North Vietnam launched a major offensive to coincide with the Lunar New Year Holiday known as Tet. Hanoi’s plans was to: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Attack more than 44 cities in South Vietnam </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Gamble on humiliating US/ARVN forces, thus forcing a quick end to the war </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Provoke a general uprising amongst the population of South Vietnam in favour of the NVA and VC </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 3. The Offensive <ul><li>US/ARVN had received warnings that ‘something big’ was about to happen. These were downplayed or ignored. </li></ul><ul><li>Jan/Feb 1968, dozens of battles erupted in South Vietnam. </li></ul><ul><li>NVA and VC fought openly in urban conditions for the first time. </li></ul><ul><li>Giap’s plan was to ‘create chaos, diversions and phony fronts’, aimed at luring American troops away from their bases. This proved successful. </li></ul><ul><li>Television reports vividly showed that the US position in South Vietnam was vulnerable. This undermined earlier reporting of the war, which had suggested that while the conflict was difficult, America was still winning. </li></ul>
  4. 4. The Results <ul><li>Militarily, NVA and VC forces suffered severe losses and the war did not end. The Tet Offensive had failed. </li></ul><ul><li>However, the Tet Offensive was a turning point. It gave the North a psychological victory and the American Home Front began to seriously question the relevance of the war. </li></ul><ul><li>Impetus was given to university anti-war movements. American personalities such as Jane Fonda, visited Hanoi and were filmed making appeals for an immediate withdrawal of the US. </li></ul><ul><li>Worldwide, the media focused on a hostile domestic situation which shook America to its core. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Anti-war movements in the U.S <ul><li>1960s- Social Division </li></ul><ul><ul><li>For Americans, the Vietnam War became a bitterly controversial aspect of the turbulent 1960s, a decade characterised by the ‘Hippy Movement’, feminism and women’s liberation, civil rights movements and growing environmental awareness. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Within this broader context, participation in the Vietnam War became increasingly unpopular and divisive. For the first time, the horrors of war were brought home into lounge rooms. </li></ul><ul><li>This highlighted the fact that the US gamble in Vietnam could not be won. US forces were guilty of atrocities and people were realising that enormous suffering was being inflicted on the people of Indochina. More and more Americans came to question the notion that involvement in the war was essential to the security of the US. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Cont… <ul><li>In 1968 divisions in American society were extensive: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>President Johnson, broken by the war, announced that he would not seek re-nomination in March. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In April, civil rights activist Martin Luther King was assassinated. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Senator Robert Kennedy was shot dead in June. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>From July to September huge anti-war rallies were held in New York, Chicago, Washington D.C and San Francisco. Violence was common. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The American Federation of Labor boycotted supply ships bound for Vietnam. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Sit-ins’, often featuring conscripts burning their draft cards, were common on university campuses. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Defeat of South Vietnam
  8. 8. Spread of the Vietnam War to Cambodia
  9. 10. Background <ul><li>Cambodian history features a continued struggle between the Hindu and the Buddhist. Both have created monumental temples dedicated to their Gods. The people are known as Khmer and they have a very rich, but also dark history. </li></ul><ul><li>In the 1830s a war almost destroyed Cambodia and King Norodom signed a treaty that allowed the French to be a protectorate. This effectively stopped the Viet-Thai war that was ensuing within Cambodia, but allowed the French to essentially rule over Cambodia for the next 90 years. </li></ul>
  10. 11. 20 th Century <ul><li>In 1953, Cambodia managed to gain independence and was obtained through the skillful diplomacy of King Sihanouk. He abdicated the throne and started a political faction called the People’s Socialist Community. </li></ul><ul><li>In 1965 he ceased all diplomatic relations with the US and allowed Communist Vietnamese access to Cambodian soil to set up bases. The American response to this came in 1969, when it began the secret bombing of Cambodia, thus drawing the Khmer people into a war they didn’t want. </li></ul><ul><li>In 1970, while Sihanouk was abroad, General Lon Nol led a coup against Sihanouk. Lon Nol was both pro-US and anti-Communist; his coup as US backing. This takeover prepared the way for the invasion of Cambodia in 1970. </li></ul>
  11. 12. King Norodom Sihanouk General Lon Nol
  12. 13. Rise to Power of the Khmer Rouge <ul><li>The Lon Nol regime was directly tied to US aid and succumbed to internal political rot and widespread corruption. Moreover, Lon Nol found himself in the grip of double crisis. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Firstly, his demand that Hanoi withdraw all its forces from Cambodia fell on deaf ears. Instead, the NVA attacked the Royal Cambodian Army, inflicting heavy causalities. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Secondly, and most importantly, Sihanouk’s downfall and Lon Nol’s seizure of power prompted the Khmer Rouge to retaliate. Civil war ensued and Lon Nol’s regime collapsed in April 1975. </li></ul></ul>
  13. 14. Between 1970 & 1975 <ul><li>Cambodia was engulfed by the Indochina conflict between 1970 and 1975. Around 60,000 people died as a result of US bombing raids, the US/ARVN invasion in 1970, attacks from the NVA and the civil war between Lon Nol’s forces and the Khmer Rouge. Agricultural activity ground to a halt. Famine and refugees became a fact of life. </li></ul>
  14. 15. Khmer Rouge <ul><li>As the Khmer Rouge knew well, there were no American plans to attack the city. The deception was a ploy to get people into the countryside, away from the urban confines of the city. The Khmer Rouge believed that cities were living and breathing tools of capitalism in their own right - KR cadres referred to Phnom Penh as &quot;the great prostitute of the Mekong.&quot; (Chandler, The Tragedy of Cambodian History , 247) </li></ul><ul><li>In order to create the ideal communist society, all people would have to live and work in the countryside as peasants. Peasants, in fact, were the Khmer Rouge communist ideal, not unlike the blonde-haired, blue-eyed Aryan of Nazi Germany. Peasants were seen as simple, uneducated, hard-working and not prone to exploiting others. </li></ul><ul><li>Their way of life had not changed for centuries, yet they always managed to survive. It was this perception that caused the Khmer Rouge to view peasants - old people , to use their political jargon - as the ideal communists for the new Cambodian state. </li></ul>
  15. 16. Cont… <ul><li>The city dwellers of Phnom Penh and other Cambodian cities, on the other hand, were seen as new people . New people were the root of all capitalist evil in the eyes of the Khmer Rouge. It didn't matter if you were a teacher, a tailor, a civil servant or a monk: new people were the embodiment of capitalism and the enemy of communism, their personal political ideologies irrelevant. </li></ul><ul><li>The Khmer Rouge felt that new people had made an active choice to live in the cities and thus declared their allegiance to capitalism. All city dwellers became enemies of the new communist state, a status that would cost hundreds of thousands of them their lives.Evacuation of the cities was the first of many radical steps taken by the Khmer Rouge. </li></ul>
  16. 17. Cont… <ul><li>As new people were forced out of the urban centers they soon learned of the new rules that were being imposed by Angka (&quot;The Organisation&quot;), the secretive team of Khmer Rouge leaders who dictated the lives of every Cambodian citizen. </li></ul><ul><li>Among these new rules, religion, money and private ownership were all banned, communications with the outside world eliminated and family relationships dismantled. All previous rights and responsibilities were thrown out the window. </li></ul><ul><li>As was often said by the Khmer Rouge, 2000 years of Cambodian history had now come to an end. April 17 was the beginning of Year Zero for the new Cambodia: Democratic Kampuchea (DK). </li></ul>
  17. 18. “ When the smiling Khmer Rouge Army occupied Cambodia’s capital Phnom Penh on the morning of Thursday 17 April 1975 their entrance was greeted by cheering and clapping. By late afternoon of the same day the entire population of the city had been driven from their homes and were being force marched into the countryside. The agrarian revolution of the Year Zero had begun.”
  18. 19. Pol Pot “ I did not join the resistance movement to kill people, to kill the nation. Look at me now. Am I a savage person? My conscience is clear.” Date of Birth: May 19, 1925 Date of Death: April 15, 1998
  19. 20. Pol Pot <ul><li>Saloth Sar , also known as Pol Pot , was the leader of the communist movement known as the Khmer Rouge. He was the Prime Minister of Cambodia from 1976 to 1979, having been de facto leader since mid-1975. During his time in power Pol Pot imposed a version of agrarian collectivization whereby city dwellers were relocated to the countryside to work in collective farms and forced labor projects with the goal of restarting civilization in &quot;Year Zero&quot;. The combined effect of slave labour, malnutrition, poor medical care and executions had an estimated death toll of 750,000 to 1.7 million . </li></ul>
  20. 21. Cont… <ul><li>Following Pol Pot’s proclamation of ‘Democratic Kampuchea’ he shut the country of from the rest of the world. Internally policies were directed by Angkar Loeu, a non-human political concept likened to Big Brother. </li></ul><ul><li>In Pol Pot’s Kampuchea: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The basic cornerstone of the Khmer Rouge was ‘Radical Agrarian Marxism’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pol admired Mao, especially China’s ‘cultural revolution’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>RAM was to be achieved by: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Emptying urban areas in order to establish new agricultural zones, promote disorientation and eliminate ‘potential troublemakers’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A brutal attack on intellectual values and the educated classes. Year zero, or the start of a new Kampuchea, was proclaimed. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Forcing Buddhist monks to work manually for Angkar, a humiliation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The elimination of at least 1.7 million people for reasons determined by Angkar </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Re-education Camps, where thousands were assigned to work gangs. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender equality- Angkar had no gender. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Destroying all western influences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Regaining former Khmer territory lost to the Vietnamese in the 13th century. </li></ul></ul>
  21. 22. Tuol Sleng- Prison S-21 <ul><li>Torture and execution became facts of life in Kampuchea. Tuol Sleng, Phnom Penh’s high school, was converted to a death camp. </li></ul><ul><li>14,499 prisoners were ‘processed’ through Tuol Sleng. Only four survived. On a single day, 15 October 1977, 418 people were executed. </li></ul><ul><li>This genocide was accomplished by executions, systematic terror, malnutrition, overwork and disease. Pol Pot’s agents were thousands of young, illiterate, and highly propagandised former farmers or urban workers, who were given unlimited power and weapons to achieve their task. </li></ul><ul><li>The methods of extracting confessions at Tuol Sleng were cruel and barbaric. Prisoners were tortured with battery powered electric shocks, searing hot metal prods, knives and other instruments. Even a wooden frame once used for gymnastics was now used to the hanging torture and execution of prisoners. Killing prisoners outright was discouraged, it was much more important for the Khmer Rouge to get confessions on paper first. </li></ul>
  22. 25. Tuol Sleng Rules <ul><li>1. You must answer accordingly to my question. Don’t turn them away. </li></ul><ul><li>2. Don’t try to hide the facts by making pretexts this and that, you are strictly prohibited to contest me. </li></ul><ul><li>3. Don’t be a fool for you are a chap who dare to thwart the revolution. </li></ul><ul><li>4. You must immediately answer my questions without wasting time to reflect. </li></ul><ul><li>5. Don’t tell me either about your immoralities or the essence of the revolution. </li></ul><ul><li>6. While getting lashes or electrification you must not cry at all. </li></ul><ul><li>7. Do nothing, sit still and wait for my orders. If there is no order, keep quiet. When I ask you to do something, you must do it right away without protesting. </li></ul><ul><li>8. Don’t make pretext about Kampuchea Krom in order to hide your secret or traitor. </li></ul><ul><li>9. If you don’t follow all the above rules, you shall get many many lashes of electric wire. </li></ul><ul><li>10. If you disobey any point of my regulations you shall get either ten lashes or five shocks of electric discharge. </li></ul>
  23. 26. The ‘Killing Fields’ at Choeung Ek <ul><li>The majority of the victims were trucked out to Choeung Ek, at about 8 or 9 o’c l ock PM, to be killed. The guards took the prisoners from their cells to the main gate where a large truck waited and told them that they were being transferred to another place. This lie was created to prevent the prisoners from crying, refusing to go or from escaping.  In order to be well prepared for execution, a messenger from the defense unit was sent to the Choeung Ek Killing Field in advance to inform a permanent team about the number of the prisoners to be killed that day. </li></ul><ul><li>Prisoners were led in small groups to ditches and pits that were dug in advance by another team stationed permanently at the site. </li></ul><ul><li>They were told to kneel down and then they were clubbed on the neck with tools such as cart axle, hoe, stick, wooden club or whatever else served as a weapon of death. They were sometimes stabbed with knives or swords to save using bullets, which were deemed to be too expensive. </li></ul>
  24. 29. Outcomes for Indochina <ul><li>The U.S retaliated against Vietnam for nearly twenty years via international embargoes and diplomatic pressure. In 1995, Washington and Hanoi established diplomatic relations. </li></ul><ul><li>In December, 1978, the People’s Army entered Cambodia in response to ongoing border clashes between the Khmer Rouge and the Vietnamese. On Christmas Day, Vietnamese forces captured Phnom Penh. The Khmer Rouge were defeated, the ‘Killing Fields’ exposed and Pol Pot and his henchmen fled to Thailand. </li></ul><ul><li>Vietnam’s attack on Cambodia prompted China to wage a one month war on Vietnam- resulting in over 80,000 casualties. </li></ul><ul><li>Vietnam occupied Cambodia until 1993. During this period, the last remnants of the Khmer Rouge and the negative legacies of Pol Pot were destroyed. Norodom Sihanouk was reinstated as Cambodia’s new monarch in 1993. </li></ul><ul><li>In April 1998, Pol Pot, surrendered himself to the Cambodian people. A series of mock trials eventuated. Unfortunately, Pol Pot, suddenly died, allegedly of old age, a heart condition, and uncured malaria. No autopsy was performed. </li></ul><ul><li>Cambodia’s current president had indirect links with the Khmer Rouge and has followed a policy of amnesty towards ex Khmer Rouge. The result is that many have escaped punishment. </li></ul>

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