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Vietnam [3] Richard Nixon's War and "Peace with Honour" (1968-75) Peace talks and the "secret plan" to end the war The anti-war movement [2] Cambodia and the "endless war" Peace, withdrawal, and defeat Some Vietnam legacies

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Darren Mulloy

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November 23
Vietnam [3] Richard Nixon’s War and “Peace with Honor” 1968-75
May 13, 1968 - Paris Peace talks begin
no one is really interested in peace talks
Johnson puts a temporary hold on bombing of N Vietnam.
N Vietnam said make this permanent before we talk
N Vietnam refuses to talk with the government of S Vietnam
Oct 1968 - LBJ halts bombing of N Veitnam
N Vietnam agrees
stop attaching S Vietnam cities
reduce supplies to South
negotiate with Nguyen Van Thieu’s government
Thieu suspects a “sell out” so that Democrats can win next election
Thieu stalls peace talks (debates the shape of the table)
doesn’t go over well with Americans because fighting is continued
Neither N Vietnam or America is willing to make major concessions
Nov 1968 - Nixon defeats Hubert Humphrey
Henry Kissinger = National Security Advisor
“The Secret Plan” and “Peace with Honor”:
there was no secret plan, Nixon knew that the US could not win a decisive military
victory in Vietnam, didn’t want to be the first president to lose a war
misunderstood the nature of the conflict in Vietnam, like his many predecessors and
Wanted to end the war quickly, didn’t want to end up like LBJ “holed up in the white
South Vietnam must remain an independent non-communist country.
The Plan:
Vietnamization (Deamericanization) of the war
withdrawal of the US troops
May 1969 = 25,000 US troops out
Aug. = 35,000
Escalation of bombing of N Vietnam
Vietnam must have a breaking point (Kissinger to Nixon)
Force the Vietnamese to meet American terms
Coupled with Nixon’s “madman theory”
needs N Vietnam’s allies to put pressure on them
needs N Vietnam to think that he’s as unpredictable as a crazy man
The Madman Theory
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Secret Negotiations
Kissinger and Le Duc Tho
Ending the draft
because people were only protesting because “they didn’t want to get their
asses shot off”
Oct 15 1969 - 2 million people in 200+ cities protest
Nov 3 - Nixon’s “silent majority” speech
only americans can defeat the americans
calls on the “silent majority” of people who he thinks will back him and support him
Draft resistance movement increased as well, even soldiers in the military were
Nov. 13 - My Lai massacre public (December = Photos in Life)
University protests and occupations
1969-1970 = 500 killed
New York (park) Harvard, Berkley, San Fransisco
May 2-4 1970 - shooting at Kent State (4 killed, 11 wounded) brought in national guard,
shot unprovoked, declared marshall law
May 14 - shootings at Jackson state (2 killed)
SDS splits and the shift to violence:
After Kent State the SDS splits because they feel that violence is now the only
method to protest
Progressive Labour Faction
Revolutionary Youth Movement
Up Against the Wall Motherfuckers
The Weathermen
The Weathermen:
October 1969 = “Days of Rage” in Chicago
300 Weathermen stomping through Chicago causing property damage
Terrorism was the effective method
“Bringing the War Back Home”
American needed to wake up and realize that they were all responsible for the
bombings in Vietnam
20 Bombings (New York Police HQ, courts, US Capitol)
Declared a state of war between themselves and the US Government
Greenwich Townhouse bombing (March 1970 = 3 killed)
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