Flashcards in Book 4: Part 3 Vietnam Deck (30):
What happened in 1954?
USA prevented elections as the feared communist victory
France pulled out of Vietnam
Vietnam was divided along the 17th parallel
Who was Diem?
Corrupt anti communist leader
Elected in 1955
Overthrown in 1963
Treated peasants badly so they wanted communism
What did America do in the build up to going to war?
America first sent in advisors to fight Viet Cong - Kennedy
They then sent
11,500 troops by the end of 1962
23,000 troops by the end of 1964 - Johnson
Why did the USA go to war with Vietnam ( 4 )
To follow their policy of containment
The gulf of Tonkin
So America do not seem weak, Americans wanted a president to be tough on communism
Domino theory. To stop the spread of communism so it would not reach its neighbours
Military industrial complex
High ranking military officers wanted war to bring in more money for them so they could make more arms.
Eisenhower warned America but did not directly accuse
What was the gulf of Tonkin incident?
In August 1964, north Vietnamese open fired on US ships on the gulf of Tonkin, this triggered war
When did the USA go to war in Vietnam?
8th March 1965
3500 marines came ashore
Tactics used by the capitalists in Vietnam?
ARVN and USA
Operation rolling thunder
Search and destroy
Tactics used by the communist supporters in the Vietnam war?
Viet Cong and NVA
Hearts and minds
If you get a tactics 4 marker, what do you do?
Say the three tactics and one in more detail e.g.
Operation rolling thunder
Chemical warfare such as the use of a highly toxic week killer called agent orange
Search and destroy
What was chemical warfare?
Using powerful chemical weapons
Agent orange- highly toxic weed killer
Napalm-burned through skin
This killed guerrilla fighters but also killed peasants and made people turn against America
What was search and destroy?
Helicopters descended on villages and raided them destroying Viet Cong
Did kill Viet Cong but
Many civilians were killed which made the is unpopular
What was operation rolling thunder?
Extensive bombing raids along the Ho Chi Minh Trail and military/ industrial targets
Disrupted Viet Cong supply routes but did not stop it
It cost $400,000 to kill one Viet Cong fighter
What was guerrilla warfare?
The Viet Cong did not wear uniform so America could not distinguish them
They had a 240km tunnel complex
40,000 Vietnamese right to keep it open
It was hard to defend against
What were booby traps?
Booby traps caused 11% of casualties
They were cheap and unexpected
However they could be leant to be avoided, but USA soldiers left after a year!
What were hearts and minds?
They would protect Viet Cong and share information as the US were bombing them as well
Evidence low morale and inexperience caused problems in Vietnam?
( 4 )
The average age for a soldier was 19, so this was their first war experience
Many soldiers turned to drugs, and 3% of officer deaths were caused by their troops - "fragging"
Incidents of desertion and they only had to stay for a year
Evidence Vietnam's neighbours caused problems in Vietnam
Neighbouring countries such as Cambodia and Laos were sympathetic to the Viet Cong
They were able to retreat there for ammunition and the Ho Chi Minh trail went through these countries that America could not enter.
Describe the events of my Lai ( 4 )
Charlie company went to My Lai and shot as many as 500 unarmed civilians
In 1968 but In March 1969 the coverup was revealed
Soldiers were told to explode brick homes and set fire to thatch houses
William Calley was 24 and a "reckless officer" "a kid trying to play war"
Who were the Charlie company?
Low scoring soldiers that beat, raped and killed civilians
Outcome of My Lai?
Turned Vietnamese against the US army
Turned the USA public against the army
How did the media effect/reflect the support at home?
At the start of the war
The media rarely covered bad stories and the journalist that broke my Lai struggled to find a newspaper to publish his story
TV films crews could now get closer to the action
Walter Cronkite said the war was "Unwinnable"
Johnson said if he lost his support, her would lose the support of middle America
CBS showed marines setting fire to villager's homes
What did civil rights campaigners do in the Vietnam war? ( 2 )
30% of African Americans were drafted compared to 19% of white Americans
" we are spending $500,000 to kill one Viet Cong soldier whilst we spend $53 for every person considered to be in poverty in the USA " - Martin Luther King
What did students do in the war?
Thousands dodged the draft
In November 1969, almost 700,000 anti war protestors demonstrated in Washington
Biggest protest in American history
What was the Tet Offensive?
Turning point in the war
Viet Cong attacked over 100 cities and lost around 10,000 troops
Why was the Tet Offensive a turning point?
It made people question the war
Big attack on a small army
Why there were 500,000 troops in Vietnam and spending $20 billion a year on war
Consequences of the Tet offensive?
President Johnson concluded the war could not be won militarily
In March 1968 a peace conference began
What was vietnamisation?
Nixon would spend resources to train ARVN to protect themselves
He wanted to get "peace with honour"
He tried to weaken the communists so they would negotiate by lots of bombing.
He had SALT talks with the USSR which helped relations
SALT = strategic arms limitation talks
When and how did the Vietnam war end for America?
Peace was agreed in 1973
Vietnam could choose who rules them
Outcomes of the Vietnam war?
America withdrew but didn't lose as they didn't lose any battle of consequence
However Vietnam fell to communism in 1975
So they failed