Vietnam notes Essay

Submitted By yassiem
Words: 2158
Pages: 9

Vietnam revision
Truman (1945-53)
Elysee Accords
Set up by Bao Dai in 49' to give Vietnam more independence from France
Intended to increase US support for France's actions in Indochina
To convince Bao Dai that France would give Vietnam greater independence
Agreements:
could conduct own foreign affairs control its finances have an army
Agreement fell short of granting complete independence
IMPORTANCE: showed USA moving from neutrality to supporting Bao Dai
Financial support
Concluded French were invaluable allies against communism
Important to NATO so deserved help
$10 million in May 50' to support the French military effort
By end of 1950, France was given $100 million
Paying nearly 80% of French bill for Indochina
In the end gave over $2 billion to France and $50 million for economic and technical aid to the Vietnamese people
Military support
Established a US military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG) in Saigon
Only 15 American military officers in MAAG in 50s
Given France aircraft, patrol boats, napalm bombs and ground combat machinery
Reasons for involvement
The 'Loss of China' in 1949 -- fear of communism spreading
Believed Ho was being controlled from Moscow and Beijing
Didn't want to support colonialism but France important NATO member
Under domestic pressure to show he was tough on communism
Domino theory - if Vietnam turned communist then Thailand and Malaysia would follow. It threatened Japan's security.

Eisenhower (1953-61)
Dien Bien Phu
Suffered a massive defeat
First, established a position at Dien Bien Phu - to stop Viet Minh entering Laos and to try and cut off aid from China to DRV
Surrounded by heavily wooded hills
Viet Minh used guerrilla tactics to fool enemy - dismantled weapons and carried it up the hills so they could rebuild it and attack the French
Giap led a two month assault which ended in defeat
Broke France's will to fight and persuaded the French government to withdraw from the region
Last French soldiers left Vietnam in 1956
Geneva Accords
Vietnam to be split at 17th parallel - Ho would control North and Diem would govern the South
10 KM demilitarized zone above the 17th parallel
French to withdraw from North and Viet Minh from South
Democratic elections to be held in 56' to reunify Vietnam
Neither sides allowed foreign allies (military alliances + bases in territory) but French to stay and help prepare for elections
America supported Diem as his American contacts were useful
Financial support
US gave Diem $7 billion as they thought he would help win the battle against communism
He ended up wasting the money and gained opposition from South Vietnam
SEATO
Created in 1954 to stop the spread of communism in South East Asia
Terms set out in Manila Pact signed by Britain, US, France, Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Thailand and the Philippines
It was a military alliance to show a united front against aggressors
Didn't have an army like NATO
South Vietnam not a member but granted military protection
IMPORTANCE: Showed that they were committed to South East Asia and they were prepared to use military force to prevent the spread of communism

Reasons for involvement
Fear of domino theory
Defeat of the French in 1954
Geneva Accords - emergence of S. Vietnamese state
Fear of N. Vietnamese state and Ho Chi Minh
Failure of S. Vietnamese state - peasants disliked Diem
Kennedy (1961-1963)
Background
Family was Catholic so anti-communist
Mccarthy was a good family friend so shared similar beliefs on communism
Criticised Truman for loss of China
Scared of Domino theory
Believed America needed president to get USA moving again. Eisenhower had lost focus in the past
Other foreign policies to deal with
Cuba was a communist country in 1959, less than 100 miles from the USA
Bay of pigs invasion authorised in 1961 (an attack on Cuba by anti-communist Cubans who left Cuba when Castro took power)
Badly affected Kennedy's prestige as…