The Strategic Hamlets Policy Analysis

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Register to read the introduction… Completely out-of-touch with his people, he fiddled the figures to produce a turnout for Saigon of over 650,000 when only around 425,000 were registered. This fiddling of elections showed what the Americans’ real priorities were – rather than focusing on installing democracy, they were focusing on not installing communism. In an almost entirely Buddhist country, Diêm was a devout Roman Catholic, one who favoured the rich landowners over the peasants – a mistake that, combined with his ‘re-education’ policies, would prove to lose him a lot of support. The only place that support could go was to the Viêt Minh, who thrived on Diêm’s unpopular …show more content…
Its extremely high implementation meant that the hamlets were often poorly constructed and barely guarded – and if sympathisers were already present in a town, the communist ideals spread with them when the hamlet was moved. The education and medical supply lines to many hamlets never materialised, and as one history textbook quotes from an observer in South Vietnam, who said: “Peasants resented working without pay to dig moats, implant bamboo stakes, and erect fences against an enemy that did not threaten them but directed its sights against government officials." This drove lots of support to the Viêt Minh, who thrived on this recruitment method – Diêm’s failings. Diêm tried to quell Viêt Minh uprisings by capturing suspected members and torturing or executing them, but this only further added sympathy to the North’s cause – the peasants didn’t particularly understand why Diêm was targeting these ‘insurgents’ who weren’t threatening to them; in fact they gave peasants the food and shelter they needed when they …show more content…
Domino Theory, theorised by the administration of the Republican Eisenhower, dictated that if South Vietnam wasn’t under the control of a strong leader, then communism would spread through South Vietnam and on to possibly Cambodia and Laos. Introducing Diêm was an American attempt to control Vietnam, but in reality, systemic failings were taking place throughout his regime. The Strategic Hamlets Policy is an example of how suspected communists would be moved around the country to incite further rebellion, and the ways in which Diêm killed the Vietnamese morale is evident from what I have previously discussed. The captivating protest of the monk Thích Quang Đúc reached out to the world to demonstrate the very serious problems with Diêm’s regime. However, Diêm remained in power and only lost the ‘hearts and minds’, which the world policing American army had sought to

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