The Tet Offensive 1968
<ul><li>The Vietnam War was a military struggle fought in Vietnam from 1959 to 1975. </li></ul><ul><li>It involved the Nor...
<ul><li>The longest military conflict in U.S. history  (1965-1973). </li></ul><ul><li>The hostilities in Vietnam, Laos, an...
<ul><li>Vietnam was divided in half in 1954: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>North Communist </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>South Democr...
Leading up to Tet… <ul><li>Between 1965 and 1967, the US increased its military presence dramatically. </li></ul><ul><li>T...
<ul><li>Monk in South Vietnam lights himself on fire to protest South Vietnamese government. </li></ul><ul><li>Self-Immola...
<ul><li>In November 1967 General Westmoreland spearheaded a public relations drive for the Johnson administration to bolst...
Khe Sahn <ul><li>January 21, 1968 - 20,000 NVA troops under the command of Gen. Giap attack the American air base at Khe S...
<ul><li>US focus was on the siege of Khe Shahn. </li></ul><ul><li>General Giap knew Americans were protesting war at home....
Giap’s Overall Goal <ul><li>Giap was aware of the growing US peace movement and of the deep divisions the war was causing ...
What is Tet? <ul><li>Tet is the most important and popular holiday and festival in Vietnam.  </li></ul><ul><li>It is the V...
Tet Holiday 1968 <ul><li>Truce was declared so both sides of conflict could celebrate Tet with their families. </li></ul><...
Tet Offensive Begins <ul><li>January 31, 1968 -   84,000 Viet Cong guerrillas aided by NVA troops launch the Tet Offensive...
<ul><li>35 of 44 provincial capitals including the ancient city of Hue. </li></ul><ul><li>Capital of South Vietnam – Saigo...
Battle for Saigon <ul><li>January 31- March 7  </li></ul><ul><li>35 NVA and Viet Cong battalions are defeated by 50 battal...
<ul><li>January 31, 1968 </li></ul><ul><li>19 VC commandos blew their way through the outer walls of the Embassy and overr...
<ul><li>The VC failed and found themselves pinned-down by the Marine guards who kept the VC in an intense firefight. </li>...
<ul><li>January 31- March 2   </li></ul><ul><li>12,000 NVA and Viet Cong troops storm the lightly defended historical city...
 
<ul><li>Over 3000 &quot;enemies of the people&quot; including South Vietnamese government officials, captured South Vietna...
Tet Offensive:   Success or Failure <ul><li>Much like the Vietnam war itself, deciding whether Tet was a success or a fail...
Tet Offensive:   Failure <ul><li>Militarily for the NVA and VC, it was a huge failure. </li></ul><ul><li>All attacks were ...
Losses during Tet Offensive
<ul><li>The Tet Offensive was both a  big public relations and psychological victory  for the communists.   </li></ul><ul>...
Contradiction <ul><li>The optimistic assessments made prior to the Tet offensive by the administration and the Pentagon ca...
<ul><li>Parts of the Tet Offensive were captured on film. </li></ul><ul><li>Many Americans saw first hand the assault on t...
 
1968: AP Photo   <ul><li>Chief of Police of Saigon Nguyen Ngoc Loan, whose execution of a Viet Cong prisoner in Saigon bec...
<ul><li>&quot;For it seems now more certain than ever,&quot; Cronkite said, &quot;that the bloody experience of Vietnam is...
<ul><li>The pressure from Vietnam on President Johnson increased after Tet. </li></ul><ul><li>On March 31, 1968, Johnson a...
American Losses <ul><li>Starting with the Tet Offensive in January; 1968 became the bloodiest and costliest year for US tr...
Anti-War Movement <ul><li>The Tet Offensive also helped unite those at home in their dissenting opinions of the war. </li>...
Conclusion <ul><li>The Tet Offensive importance lies in the fact that it broke the will of the American government and peo...
THE END
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Tet 1968

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Tet Offensive 1968

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Tet 1968

  1. 1. The Tet Offensive 1968
  2. 2. <ul><li>The Vietnam War was a military struggle fought in Vietnam from 1959 to 1975. </li></ul><ul><li>It involved the North Vietnamese and the National Liberation Front (NLF) in conflict with United States forces and the South Vietnamese army . </li></ul>Conflict in Vietnam
  3. 3. <ul><li>The longest military conflict in U.S. history (1965-1973). </li></ul><ul><li>The hostilities in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia claimed the lives of more than 58,000 Americans. </li></ul>Vietnam War
  4. 4. <ul><li>Vietnam was divided in half in 1954: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>North Communist </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>South Democracy </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In 1965 the US sent in troops to prevent the South Vietnamese government from collapsing and turning all of Vietnam Communist. </li></ul>Why US Involvement?
  5. 5. Leading up to Tet… <ul><li>Between 1965 and 1967, the US increased its military presence dramatically. </li></ul><ul><li>This policy led to increased anti-war demonstrations in America. </li></ul><ul><li>The US government claimed progress was being made. </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Monk in South Vietnam lights himself on fire to protest South Vietnamese government. </li></ul><ul><li>Self-Immolation also in US (1965): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Norman Morrison </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Alice Herz </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Roger LaPorte </li></ul></ul>Extreme Protest
  7. 7. <ul><li>In November 1967 General Westmoreland spearheaded a public relations drive for the Johnson administration to bolster flagging public support. </li></ul><ul><li>In a speech before the National Press Club he said that a point in the war had been reached &quot;where the end comes into view.&quot; </li></ul>Light at the End of the Tunnel
  8. 8. Khe Sahn <ul><li>January 21, 1968 - 20,000 NVA troops under the command of Gen. Giap attack the American air base at Khe Sanh. </li></ul><ul><li>A 77 day siege begins as 5000 U.S. Marines in the isolated outpost are encircled. </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>US focus was on the siege of Khe Shahn. </li></ul><ul><li>General Giap knew Americans were protesting war at home. </li></ul><ul><li>Media attention was becoming key factor. </li></ul><ul><li>Giap also wanted to start a people’s uprising in the South against the US. </li></ul>On the Eve of Tet
  10. 10. Giap’s Overall Goal <ul><li>Giap was aware of the growing US peace movement and of the deep divisions the war was causing in American society. </li></ul><ul><li>What the General needed was a body-blow that would break Washington's will to carry on. </li></ul><ul><li>Wanted a quick and decisive victory that would be well in time for the 1968 US Presidential campaign. </li></ul>
  11. 11. What is Tet? <ul><li>Tet is the most important and popular holiday and festival in Vietnam. </li></ul><ul><li>It is the Vietnamese New Year which is based on the Lunar calendar. </li></ul><ul><li>Usually a 3 day holiday; end of January. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Tet Holiday 1968 <ul><li>Truce was declared so both sides of conflict could celebrate Tet with their families. </li></ul><ul><li>NVA and Viet Cong began sneaking into cities with smuggled weapons. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Used flower carts, jury rigged coffins and trucks supposedly filled with rice and vegetables. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>They were disguised as peasants, refugees and workers. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Tet Offensive Begins <ul><li>January 31, 1968 - 84,000 Viet Cong guerrillas aided by NVA troops launch the Tet Offensive attacking a hundred cities and towns throughout South Vietnam. </li></ul><ul><li>They used the Tet truce agreement to aid the element of surprise. </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>35 of 44 provincial capitals including the ancient city of Hue. </li></ul><ul><li>Capital of South Vietnam – Saigon. </li></ul><ul><li>US Embassy in Saigon. </li></ul>Major Targets
  15. 15. Battle for Saigon <ul><li>January 31- March 7 </li></ul><ul><li>35 NVA and Viet Cong battalions are defeated by 50 battalions of American and Allied troops that had been positioned to protect the city on a hunch by Gen. Fred Weyand. </li></ul><ul><li>Weyand became known as the “Savior of Saigon” for his actions . </li></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>January 31, 1968 </li></ul><ul><li>19 VC commandos blew their way through the outer walls of the Embassy and overran the five MP's on duty. </li></ul><ul><li>2 MP's were killed as the VC tried to blast their way through the main Embassy doors with anti-tank rockets. </li></ul>Attack on US Embassy
  17. 17. <ul><li>The VC failed and found themselves pinned-down by the Marine guards who kept the VC in an intense firefight. </li></ul><ul><li>By mid-morning, the battle had turned. </li></ul><ul><li>All 19 VC were killed, their bodies scattered around the Embassy courtyard. </li></ul>Attack Fails
  18. 18. <ul><li>January 31- March 2 </li></ul><ul><li>12,000 NVA and Viet Cong troops storm the lightly defended historical city. </li></ul><ul><li>South Vietnamese troops and three U.S. Marine battalions counter-attack and engage in the heaviest fighting of the entire Tet Offensive. </li></ul><ul><li>See pictures on next slide. </li></ul>Battle for Hue
  19. 20. <ul><li>Over 3000 &quot;enemies of the people&quot; including South Vietnamese government officials, captured South Vietnamese officers, and Catholic priests were executed by the Viet Cong and NVA in Hue. </li></ul>Massacre in Hue
  20. 21. Tet Offensive: Success or Failure <ul><li>Much like the Vietnam war itself, deciding whether Tet was a success or a failure is very confusing ! </li></ul><ul><li>Either way, the Tet Offensive today is seen as the turning point of the war. </li></ul>
  21. 22. Tet Offensive: Failure <ul><li>Militarily for the NVA and VC, it was a huge failure. </li></ul><ul><li>All attacks were turned back and the uprisings predicted did not take place. </li></ul><ul><li>Crippling losses for NVA and VC would make it years before the NVA could launch another big scale attack. </li></ul><ul><li>The Viet Cong would never recover fully from the losses they sustained during the Tet Offensive. </li></ul>
  22. 23. Losses during Tet Offensive
  23. 24. <ul><li>The Tet Offensive was both a big public relations and psychological victory for the communists. </li></ul><ul><li>There were several reasons Giap was able to claim success after the offensive. </li></ul>Tet Offensive: Success
  24. 25. Contradiction <ul><li>The optimistic assessments made prior to the Tet offensive by the administration and the Pentagon came under heavy criticism </li></ul><ul><li>The &quot;credibility gap&quot; that had opened in 1967 widened into a chasm. </li></ul><ul><li>Many Americans did not believe LBJ or Gen. Westmoreland’s assessment of the war. </li></ul>
  25. 26. <ul><li>Parts of the Tet Offensive were captured on film. </li></ul><ul><li>Many Americans saw first hand the assault on the US embassy in Saigon. </li></ul><ul><li>Brought the war home for many Americans. </li></ul><ul><li>Next slide is one of the most famous images from the Vietnam War. </li></ul>The “Living Room” War
  26. 28. 1968: AP Photo <ul><li>Chief of Police of Saigon Nguyen Ngoc Loan, whose execution of a Viet Cong prisoner in Saigon became one of the most chilling images of the Vietnam War. </li></ul><ul><li>Eddie Adams, whose photo of the execution won a Pulitzer Prize for The Associated Press, said the man Loan shot had been seen killing others and that the execution was justified . </li></ul>
  27. 29. <ul><li>&quot;For it seems now more certain than ever,&quot; Cronkite said, &quot;that the bloody experience of Vietnam is to end in a stalemate.&quot;  </li></ul><ul><li>After watching Cronkite's broadcast, LBJ was quoted as saying. &quot;That's it. If I've lost Cronkite, I've lost middle America.&quot; </li></ul>Walter Cronkite Respected CBS Anchorman turns against the War in Vietnam
  28. 30. <ul><li>The pressure from Vietnam on President Johnson increased after Tet. </li></ul><ul><li>On March 31, 1968, Johnson announced that he would not seek another term as President. </li></ul>Political Fallout in US
  29. 31. American Losses <ul><li>Starting with the Tet Offensive in January; 1968 became the bloodiest and costliest year for US troops in Vietnam. </li></ul><ul><li>Losses in 1968 made the call to bring the troops home louder. </li></ul>
  30. 32. Anti-War Movement <ul><li>The Tet Offensive also helped unite those at home in their dissenting opinions of the war. </li></ul><ul><li>The Anti-War movement really began to strengthen, especially during the election year of 1968. </li></ul>
  31. 33. Conclusion <ul><li>The Tet Offensive importance lies in the fact that it broke the will of the American government and people to continue the fight. </li></ul><ul><li>Tet turned many people, especially the US media, against the Vietnam War . </li></ul>
  32. 34. THE END

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