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Vietnam Conflict (continued). The failed South Vietnamese government. Ngo Ding Diem became widely unpopular and was considered by many to be corrupt. By 1962 many of Kennedy’s advisors believed the Vietnam situation was becoming worse.

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the failed south vietnamese government
The failed South Vietnamese government
  • Ngo Ding Diem became widely unpopular and was considered by many to be corrupt.
  • By 1962 many of Kennedy’s advisors believed the Vietnam situation was becoming worse.
  • In Nov of 1962 South Vietnamese generals led a coup d’etat authorized by the CIA and JFK. Diem was killed in the coup.
the assassination of jfk
The Assassination of JFK
  • Nearly one full year after Diem was assassinated, JFK also was assassinated.
  • Lyndon B. Johnson then was faced with how to proceed with the Vietnam situation.
  • By early 1963, the U.S. had over 1,000 military advisors in Vietnam but not yet in combat situations.
the gulf o f tonkin incident
The Gulf of Tonkin Incident
  • In August of 1964, the U.S. navy reported being fired upon by North Vietnam in the Gulf of Tonkin.
  • U.S. ships were given authority to fire back.
  • President Johnson went before congress and asked for approval to send troops into Vietnam to confront the communist aggressors, this was called The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution.
the u s escalates in the war
The U.S escalates in the war
  • At first, the war was popular with the U.S. public.
  • General William Westmoreland commanded U.S. troops in Vietnam.
  • By 1969, the U.S. had placed nearly 500,000 troops in South Vietnam to fight the North Vietnamese and Vietcong troops.
  • U.S. troops were not allowed to cross over the 17th parallel.
the vietcong tactics
The Vietcong tactics
  • Like the Vietminh, the Vietcong used guerilla war tactics.
  • It was highly difficult for U.S. troops to identify and locate the enemy.
  • The Vietcong plan was to draw out the war and frustrate the U.S.
  • The Vietcong and North Vietnamese used supply lines called the Ho Chi Minh trail leading into Laos and Cambodia.
the turning point in the war
The turning point in the war
  • By 1968, the U.S. public was starting to turn against the war.
  • College protests had become extremely common place.
  • Many in the media and musical groups were writing anti war stories and songs.
  • In January of 1968, the turning point in the war took place, The Tet Offensive
the tet offensive
The Tet Offensive
  • A calculated Vietcong and North Vietnamese attack against over one hundred cities in S. Vietnam. (January of 1968)
  • The U.S. was able to defeat the Vietcong in one month considering it a military victory.
  • The Vietcong considered it a victory as the U.S. public no longer trusted the military statement that the war was under control and close to an end.
lyndon b johnson and the election of 68
Lyndon B. Johnson and the election of 68’
  • As a result of the Tetand growing unpopularity Johnson decided not to run for reelection in 1968. Great Society programs also a casualty of the war.
  • Richard Nixon (Rep) ran against Hubert Humphrey (Dem) and George Wallace (Ind)
  • Nixon won the election (capturing only 43%) and pledged to end the war with honor.