The Vietnam War

The Vietnam War was a struggle between years 1959 – 1975. The nationalists attempted to establish a communism government under the leadership of Ho Chi, which was opposed by the United States government. Drawing from the experiences of US citizens during and after the war, there was no need for the Americans to engage in the long struggle.

For decades, Vietnam had been fighting colonialists, the French, who had ruled the country for more than six decades. In 1940, Japan invaded some portions of Vietnam. By 1941, the country was under the ruler ship of the two colonial masters. Around this period, the revolutionary leader Ho Chi returned to the country.

With the support of the northern Vietnam citizens, Ho Chi decided to lead in the bid to get rid of the colonialists. He therefore announced the independence of Vietnam, whose government would go by the name Democratic Republic of Vietnam. The French, however, were not ready to give up the colony.

Ho chi tried to seek for US support against the French colonizers in Vietnam. However, the US government was not willing to offer support because of their focus on the cold war policy of containment. Additionally, for US and allies feared the spread of communism. This informed the decision of the US to support French against Ho Chi.

In 1954, the French withdrew from Vietnam after a defeat at Dien Bien Phu. Though it was agreed that the Vietnam would hold elections and form one government, the US feared that the new government would be formed under the communism regime. They therefore supported South Vietnam in holding an election. The winner, Ngo Dihn Diem, alienated most of the Vietnamese people. As a result, Viet Cong was established by communist sympathizers. The group later engaged in a guerilla war against South Vietnam.

The US supported the South Vietnamese defenses, provoking the response of North Vietnamese, who fired two US ships in 1964. The congress responded by coming up with a resolution to allow the US president, Lyndon Johnson, to exercise authority over Vietnam. He sent troops to the country with the aim of ensuring that the southern Vietnam would take over. However, the public were disappointed when US found themselves in a stalemate with the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese.

In 1968, the war reached a turning point when North Vietnam attacked the south. The U.S, realized their enemy was stronger and hence, under the leadership of Richard Nixon, decided to withdraw from the war. Though the war continued for a while, Vietnam was re-united as a communist country in 1975. Indeed, the US did not have to get involved in the war because they did not plan to win in the first place, and their other goals were never achieved.

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