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Subject: Vietnam.....why did the US get involved?

Written By: Tony20fan4ever on 06/25/04 at 3:50 am

I have to wonder why the H*LL we got involved in the "police action"(read:WAR)in Vietnam..the Commies there were NO threat to us...Besides the South Vietnamese government was CORRUPT from top to bottom! What the h*ll were JFK and Johnson thinking!?! IMO Vietnam was an unwinnable and totally POINTLESS war!!!

Subject: Re: Vietnam.....why did the US get involved?

Written By: CatwomanofV on 06/25/04 at 12:16 pm

Oh man, how much time do you have? (or should I say, how much time do I have to tell you). First of all, Vietnam was occupied by the French. The French decided to move out and the U.S. "had" to move in. It was during the height of the Cold War was "communism" was the "enemy". There was the "domino theory" which basically was if Vietnam fell to the communists, then other south Asian countries would also fall. Vietnam just wanted to govern themselves (after the French left) but the U.S. put in a puppet government in South Vietnam. And basically all hell broke loose. The strange thing about it, was that Ho Chi Man cited the Declaration of Indepence as he spoke to his people. He was NOT an enemy of the U.S. he just wanted his country to be free.

Why did the U.S. get involved? Because it could. It was once again, the U.S. trying to "police" the world because of the imaginary fear of communism.

(The short answer)


Subject: Re: Vietnam.....why did the US get involved?

Written By: Don Carlos on 06/25/04 at 12:33 pm

What Cat said was all more or less correct but incomplete.  Before WWII Indochina, as it was called, was a French colony but was overrun by the Japanese.  After the war the French wanted it back, and since we were their ally, and wanted their cooperation in other parts of the world, like N Afreica, we supported them.  The Vietnamese launched a struggle against the French, who we continued to support, and drove them out at the battle of Diem Bien Phu.  The UN stepped in and sponsored a plebicite on reunification, which won.  Eisenhower refused to accept the result and backed the new Gov't of South Vietnam.  The North Vietnamese refused to accept that imposition, and began the guerrilla struggle.  So Kennedy and Johnson were simply continuing (and expanding) Eisenhower's policy of 2 Vietnams.  It was the height of the cold war, and soon after the McCarthy era, so being "soft on communism" was not a political option.  This "tough" stance also brought us the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban missle crisis, along with Korea etc.

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