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Lecture

HIS377 Lecture March 13th.docx

3 Pages
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Department
History
Course Code
HIS377H1
Professor
Pouls Wegner

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HIS377 20  Century American Foreign Relations The Longest War: Vietnam and the Vietnam Syndrome Credibility is the key to understanding foreign relations of the Vietnam war Outline: I. Introductions: The Longest War • Quagmire theory • Domestic and international issues caused them to go forward even though  little is being effectively achieved • During the quagmire theory was first used during Kennedy’s  administration before troops even landed there.  • The Longest War: Ho Chi Ming, goes to Moscow and studies communism  at its sources as well as goes to China • He uses two documents to frame his speech: the French and the united  states declaration of independence • Despite that the French immediately start a counter revolution  • Ho Ming writes letters to Truman saying that the US committed to helping  them seek freedom. Truman never replies.  • After bloody siege, the French surrendered after 2 months (was not French  disaster by Western disasters)  II. Into the Quagmire • 1954 o French defeat at Dien Bien Phu o Geneva Conference   Temporary Division at the 17  parallel • 1955­1956 o US MAAG trains ARVN (S) o Elections o Domino Theory • 1964­1967 o Tonkin Gulf Incident (August 1964) – “Blank Check” o 3500 Marines arrive at Da Nang (March 1965) o Pleiku + Op Rolling Thunder • Johnson wants to be a domestic president and wants to change the shape  of America domestically but he has to deal with “that bitch of that war”.  Has critiques from the right, left and military.  • Out of three to four times an event where a ship sunk at sea has lead to the  war o Lusitania (starts the trajectory) • Robert Strange MacClimara • Vietnam is not a traiditonalwar because it is a gorilla conflict—but there is  also no clear win • The measure of victory is therefore the body count • Quantitative in scope but big problems even with the body count!! III. Peace with Horror • 1968 is an incredibly bad year – starts with the Tet Offensive • Even though US wins it is incredibly embarrassing and bad for morale • Kennedy killed • King killed • Prague and Paris • DNC 1968
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