Essay about Operation Rolling Thunder The Cost Of The Operation

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operation did not sit well with the White House as they would not have the control over the operation. As the war progressed, McNamara realized the most effective way to defeat the Viet Cong would be to destroy the direct supply lines from China to southern Vietnam. The intent of his plan was to perform
“a total quarantine of the movement of war supplies into North Vietnam, by sea, rail, and road, through the mining of Haiphong and all other harbors and the destruction of rail and road bridges leading from China to Hanoi.” (Drew)
While this operation had the support of the Joint Chiefs, the President rejected it as it may have trigged Chinese intervention. In order to force McNamara to conform his ideals, the President sent him to do an assessment in Vietnam and ultimately dissuaded him from any dissenting opinions.
Cost Analysis Over the course of operation Rolling Thunder the cost of the operation was estimated to be over nine hundred million dollars. The United States also lost 922 aircraft and 1054 casualties. Whereas the North Vietnamese forces would face an estimated three hundred million dollars (Schlight). The cost differential between the two sides puts the war into perspective. The United States was clearly unable to cost effectively continue fight the North Vietnamese with the already waning support of American population.

Failure to Destroy Key Supply Routes Just as the Joint Chiefs foretold, the key to the North Vietnamese victory was the unrestricted…

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