dumped by U.S. planes on the dense forests of Vietnam. In 1982, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was unveiled in Washington, D.C. On it were inscribed the names of 58,200 American armed forces killed or missing during the war In VIETNAM :War had decimated the country’s infrastructure and economy, and reconstruction proceeded slowly. In 1976, Vietnam was unified as the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, though sporadic violence continued over the next 15 years, including conflicts with neighboring China and Cambodia. Many Vietnamese left their country to never go back again. Comparison in 2008 dollars: America Revolution 1.8 billion, Civil War 45.2 billion, WWI 253 billion, WWII 4.1 Trillion, Vietnam war 686 Billion, Gulf war 96 Billion “ We should enter wars of choice only with the greatest reluctance, and then only after being completely honest with ourselves and the world about our rationale for undertaking such missions” ex-spy chief : George Tenet in 2007 6
VIETNAM VOCABULARY 1-French Indochina: Indochina was a federation of states controlled by the French consisting of the countries of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. When Vietnam was under the control of the French they divided the country into three separate states consisting of Cochin China (South Vietnam), Annam (Central Vietnam), and Tonkin (North Vietnam) 2-Vietminh; The Viet Minh (League for the Independence of Vietnam) was formed in 1941 and primarily led by Communists under Ho Chi Minh to counter the Japanese invasion of Vietnam. Japan handed Vietnam to the Viet Minh in 1945. The Viet Minh were helped when the Communist Party of Mao Zedong was victorious in China in 1949 3- Domino theory: Domino Theory speculated that if a region came under communism, other countries would follow. The Containment Policy and the speculations of the Domino theory resulted in the Vietnam War and arguably led to the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand staying free of Communism 4- Dien Bien Phu: The French defeat at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu on May 7, 1954 by the Viet Minh Communist army ended the French effort to retain Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos in the Indochina War but began the direct involvement of the United States who later replaced France to fight against communism in Vietnam. 5-“Operation Rolling Thunder”: Code name for search and destroy: Between March 2, 1965 and October 31, 1968, the United States was involved in a bombing operation called “Operation Rolling Thunder” as part of the Vietnam War. The United States dropped about 1,600,000 tons of bombs in “Operation Rolling Thunder” which were 100,000 tons more than were used in WWII by the United States. The operation targeted the Ho Chi Mihn Trail to try and cut off Communist supply lines. In spite of all the bombs used, the mission was a failure 6-Geneva Accords (17 th parallel): after the defeat of the French at Dien Bien Phu Delegates from 9 nations convene in Geneva to start negotiations that will lead to the end of hostilities in Indochina. The idea of partitioning Vietnam is first explored at this forum.
- Spring '09
- History, Vietnam War