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US INVOLVEMENT GROWS CH. 16 SECTION 2. TERMS & PEOPLE William Westmoreland – (born March 26, 1914 & died July 18, 2005) was a United States Army General,

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Presentation on theme: "US INVOLVEMENT GROWS CH. 16 SECTION 2. TERMS & PEOPLE William Westmoreland – (born March 26, 1914 & died July 18, 2005) was a United States Army General,"— Presentation transcript:

1 US INVOLVEMENT GROWS CH. 16 SECTION 2

2 TERMS & PEOPLE William Westmoreland – (born March 26, 1914 & died July 18, 2005) was a United States Army General, who commanded US military operations in the Vietnam War at its peak (1964–68), during the Tet Offensive. He adopted a strategy of attrition against the National Liberation Front of South Vietnam and the North Vietnamese Army. He later served as U.S. Army Chief of Staff from 1968 to Napalm – jellied gasoline dropped in large canisters that explode on impact and cover large areas in fames; dropped by U.S. planes during the Vietnam War. Hawk – a person who supported U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. Dove – person who opposed U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War.

3 SECTION FOCUS What were the causes and effects of America’s growing involvement in the Vietnam War?

4 I. “AMERICANIZING” THE WAR A.Assumptions and Strategies 1.Operation Rolling Thunder - the first sustained bombing campaign against North Vietnam. Ordered by President Johnson, which dramatically altered the U.S. role in Vietnam. 2.Napalm, Agent Orange, and other weapons used. Agent Orange is an herbicide that destroys plant life. It was used to disrupt the enemy’s food supply.

5 An image of Napalm used in Vietnam

6 B.Elusive and Determined Enemy 1.Fought guerrilla fighters – Ho Chi Minh’s military doctrine (teachings) was to fight only when victory was assured, which meant never fighting on his opponents’ terms. 2.Small battles- communists forces used hit-and-run attacks, nighttime ambushes, and booby traps. C.Costly and Frustrating War 1.Many casualties – Each year the war cost more American dollars and claimed more American lives. By 1968 more than 30,000 Americans had been killed in Vietnam. 2.South Vietnamese government was corrupt and unpopular.

7 II. PATRIOTISM, HEROISM, AND SINKING MORALE A.Danger on a New Battlefield 1.It was difficult for the U.S. troops to know which Vietnamese person was a friend or an enemy. 2.Could win no large victories. U.S. forces had no alternative but to fight indecisive battles in the jungles, rice paddies, and mountains of Vietnam. Much of the fighting took place at night, which reduced the effectiveness of American planes, artillery, and troop tactics.

8 B.American Soldiers Fulfill Their Duty 1.Soldiers fought for a variety of reasons a)Prevent the spread of communism b)Protect villagers in S. Vietnam and win their trust and respect. c) Felt it was their duty because their country was at war. 2.Around 10,000 women served in Vietnam, most were nurses. C.Moral Declines 1.Later in the war, most soldiers were draftees. 2.South Vietnamese often seemed indifferent.

9 III. DOUBT GROWS ON THE HOMEFRONT The Johnson administration continued to assert (declare) that an American victory was close at hand, but when that die not come, many began to question the President’s foreign policy. A.War Weakens Economy 1.Rising prices and inflation 2.Costs of Great Society cold not be met. The Great Society’s goals were to: a)Eliminate poverty b)Improve education and medical care c)Fight racial discrimination B. Antiwar Movement Emerges 1.Hawks and Doves 2.Fullbright hearings-provided a platform for critics of the conflict in Vietnam


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