Historical Background ofVietnam• Vietnam has been fighting for its independence since 208 B.C.• 1862-Asked Lincoln for help against the French• 1918-Asked Wilson for help against French• 1940-Vietnam fell to the Japanese during WWII
Why not help theVietnamese?• 1949-Asia became important • France was an ally during the war (NATO) • Anti-communist FoPo • Stay consistent-Korea, Eastern Europe• USSR Detonates the A- bomb• 1st American killed-Sept. 1945 • Ho sent apology in letter
Truman cont.• June 27, 1950• US gave 3 billion + 300 Advisors to South Vietnam• President of SV was Buddhist Monk (Bao Dai)
B. Ike• US supplied 80% of the French War • 500,000 total troops in Vietnam• US paying to keep Vietnam in French Hands• A Tiger vs. An Elephant?
Dien Bien Phu• March 13- May 7, 1954• French took the low ground & had no aircraft!• Ike would not use nukes!• Congress would not authorize strike without UK.• Ridgway- to win in Vietnam, draft almost 1 million men• French Forces leave October 9, 1954
Election of 1956• US Support-Ngo Dinh Diem • Lived in New Jersey• Election of 1956 • Diem (Red-Good Luck) • Bao Dai (Green-Bad Luck) • If vote red, receive a treat • If still voted green, followed, beaten, pepper spray, water down throat • Diem 98%, Bao Dai 2%
JFK cont.• Can we win in Vietnam? • Yes, 150,000 troops + nuclear weapons• “We failed & so will you”- Charles De Gaulle• Can-do-ism-Americans can do anything • Panama Canal
Quiet Escalation of the War• Ike- 700 advisors• JFK- 16,000 advisors• Quang Duc-Buddhist monk that self- immolates • June 11, 1963 • JFK- “They hate us, they’re going to kick our ----- out there.
Assassination of Diem• November 1, 1963 • Diem captured and murdered • US knew and supported it! • JFK did not know assassination was coming.• “In the final analysis it is their war. They are the ones who have to win it or lose it. • Thought about troop withdrawal, did bring home 1000