Vietnam War Failure

1128 Words 5 Pages
In 1945, the Viet Minh, led by Ho Chi Minh was fighting for Vietnamese independence from Japan, and French colonial rule. The Viet Minh soon drove them out and took power during the August revolution. The Viet Minh soon tried to establish a communist nation, but the United States disagreed with their views, fearing that one communist country in southeast Asia would trigger a chain reaction, spreading communism like wildfire. The United states quickly took action stationing troops to “stop the spread of communism” thus beginning the Vietnam war.
Ultimately this war ended in failure for the United States, at the cost of 211,454 American lives. There are too many opinions of why the United States failed in Vietnam too talk about in one sitting,
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It was General Westmorland’s strategy in which he believed was the key to destroying the Viet Cong. This strategy consisted of the wearing down of Viet Cong forces and materials until they no longer had the numbers for war, or lost the will to fight back. Despite The United State’s superior firepower and mobility, search and destroy was a failure, due to the loss of thousands of American lives. There were many flaws in General Westmorland’s "key" to defeating the Viet Cong. As the war became more aggressive as it progressed, so did the missions. The destination between the search and destroy and the clear and hold missions started to become less noticeable, making both types of missions to be identical. With distinction never fully established, the Viet Cong’s pacification was unsuccessful, allowing them to take more control over parts of South Vietnam. Another flaw was that the American soldiers were ordered to search south Vietnamese homes, exposing them to the possibility of ambush. These ambushes, made the Americans cold hearted toward civilians, leading them to burn down villages in zippo raids and massacre many inhabitants of the villages. One of the most Infamous massacres in the search and destroy strategy was the My Lai massacre of 1968. Incidence like this demolished the locals’ trust in American soldiers. The North Vietnams infiltration of the South, …show more content…
In 1969, President Richard Nixon took office, then shortly after he introduced a new strategy to end American Involvement in the Vietnam war, and transfer all military responsibilities to south Vietnam, leaving them to fight the war alone. Before Nixon took office, he had been sending troops to fight in Vietnam since 1965, but he soon saw that the United States putting full military commitment into defeating the communist forces in Vietnam was useless. The initial plan was to strengthen South Vietnam’s Military while gradually withdrawing American troops. Nixon believed that by doing this south Vietnam could take its own action against the North while the United States pulls out of the war with while it still has its honor. Nixon’s removal of American troops was a gradual process, at the rate of 549,000 in 1969 to 69,000 in 1972. The U.S. treaty with the North Vietnamese in 1973 completed the Vietnamization process, leaving South Vietnam to fight the war alone. Unfortunately, the South Vietnamese Army was not strong enough to stop North Vietnam’s forces. This was proven during the 1972 Easter offensive, this made the South Vietnamese’s poor performance and their over-reliance on American air support quite obvious. South Vietnam soon was defeated as they surrendered during the fall of Saigon on April 30, 1975. I think the United States pulled out of the Vietnam war was, because of the high number of

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