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US Involvement Grows. United States History Chapter 16, Section 2 Mrs. Huston. President Johnson drastically altered the US role Ordered Operation Rolling Thunder. Americanizing the War. Operation Rolling Thunder. Sustained bombing campaign against North Vietnam

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US Involvement Grows


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    1. US Involvement Grows United States History Chapter 16, Section 2 Mrs. Huston

    2. President Johnson drastically altered the US role Ordered Operation Rolling Thunder Americanizing the War

    3. Operation Rolling Thunder • Sustained bombing campaign against North Vietnam • Demonstrate total air supremacy • Carried out 1965 – 1968 • Vietcong attacked US air bases as a result • More troops sent to Vietnam to defend the bases

    4. Who is primary? • US role grew beyond just advisors • South Vietnamese role became more limited and supportive

    5. Whose idea was it? • Secretary of Defense – Robert McNamara • US Commander – General William Westmoreland

    6. What did they want? • Increase military presence in Vietnam • Win the war to stop the spread of communism

    7. What did they use? • Conventional bombing • More than 6 million tons (more than all of WWII) • Napalm • Jellied gasoline dropped in large canisters that exploded • Burst into flames • Agent Orange • Herbicide sprayed from planes

    8. The Enemy • Vietcong: civilian guerilla fighters including both North and South Vietnamese • North Vietnamese Army: supported by Soviets and Chinese

    9. Tactics • Few large scale battles • Huge tunnel system • Quick, hit and run attacks • Booby traps • sabotage

    10. Results • Although US bombing did hurt North Vietnamese industry, they did not surrender • Being unable to use technological advantage hurt the US • Number of troops and casualties jumped tremendously

    11. Problems • Series of corrupt, ineffective South Vietnamese governments • Alienated South Vietnamese people • By 1967 the war was almost a stalemate

    12. Different kind of war • No territorial acquisition • Couldn’t tell friends from enemies • Battles indecisive, many at night

    13. Morale Declines • US soldiers, naval personnel, and airmen served with courage and dedication • More than 10,000 women served—mostly as nurses • Began to question US involvement • Felt resented by the South Vietnamese

    14. Back Home in the US • People couldn’t understand why our powerful nation wasn’t winning • Government kept saying victory was close • Body counts rose • Economy suffered • Domestic programs expensive • War equally so

    15. Antiwar Movement • Even Congress divided into Hawks & Doves • Hawks supported the war effort • Doves opposed it • Doubts about the domino theory and containment • Antiwar protestors included many groups

    16. Protestors • Congressmen—those who oppose the President’s programs • Pacifists—oppose war altogether • Students—opposed the draft and the war • Civil rights leaders—charged racism

    17. Senator Fulbright • Led the doves in Congress • Had supported the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution • Became convinced it was a civil war, not our business • He held public hearings, providing a public platform for critics of the war

    18. The End