2President Nixon inherited an unpopular war and increasing troubles on the home front.
3Peace Talks Stall Formal peace talks began in May, 1968 in Paris US wanted all VC out of South Vietnam and release of POW’sNorth Vietnam wanted halt to bombings, withdrawal of US troops, and recognition of NLF (Vietcong) as a political partyNeither side would budge on negotiationsBoth sides argued over shape of the negotiating table.
7VietnamizationNixon expressed his faith in the South Vietnamese Army (ARVN) to assume the burden of the warThis was called VietnamizationThe idea was to transfer front-line fighting to the South Vietnamese
8Bombing of CambodiaThe North Vietnamese were continuing to supply the Vietcong by way of the Ho Chi Minh TrailThe trail ran through neutral Laos and CambodiaNixon secretly ordered the bombing of the Ho Chi Minh Trail in Cambodia to reduce the flow of supplies to the Vietcong
10American Troops Attack Cambodia Nixon was growing impatient at the pace of peace negotiationsIn order to break the negotiations stalemate, Nixon ordered a ground attack by U.S. soldiers on North Vietnamese bases in CambodiaHe also hoped to aid the pro-American Cambodian government in its fight against the communist Khmer RougeNixon addressed the nation on TV and informed them of the invasionAlthough large quantities of supplies were seized, the North Vietnamese continued their struggleAnti-war activists immediately criticized Nixon for expanding the scope of the war
12Students ProtestAt Kent State University in Ohio, four students were shot by National Guardsmen.A similar confrontation at Jackson State University in Mississippi left two students dead.Counterprotests were held by those supporting Nixon and the war efforts.
15My LaiIn 1971, Americans were stunned to learn about the My Lai massacre.Four years earlier, U.S. soldiers searching for Vietcong in the village of My Lai had killed hundreds of unarmed civilians.The unit commander, Lt. William Calley, claimed he had been following orders.The military was criticized for covering up the incident and not performing an adequate investigation.Lt. Calley was convicted by a military court and sentenced to life imprisonment,President Nixon commuted sentence to house arrest and later granted him a pardon.
17The Pentagon PapersThe publication of the Pentagon Papers further shocked the nation.The report revealed that American leaders had lied to Congress and failed to inform the public fully about the American involvement in Vietnam.Nixon tried to stop publication of the Pentagon Papers, but The New York Times published the report in 1971.
18Nixon Wins in 1972In October 1972, the US and North Vietnam came to terms on a peace settlementNixon won reelection one month laterNorth Vietnam refused to sign the agreementNixon ordered the bombing of North Vietnam to force the Vietnamese to resume negotiations
19Paris Peace AccordsIn January 1973, the war finally ended with the signing of the Paris Peace Accords.The United States, South Vietnam, North Vietnam, and the Vietcong would stop fighting.U.S. troops would withdraw from South Vietnam.North Vietnamese troops would remain in South Vietnam.South Vietnam’s noncommunist government would remain in power.US POW’s would be returned
27More Problems in Southeast Asia In Cambodia, the communist Khmer Rouge unleashed a genocide, killing more than 2 million peopleA communist government took control in LaosVietnam, now unified and communist, attacked Cambodia who were supplied by the Chinese and supported by the US
29The Cost of War More than 58,000 Americans died in Vietnam. It would be years before Vietnam veterans were acknowledged for their sacrifices.The war undermined Americans’ trust in their leaders.Americans became reluctant to intervene in other nations’ affairs.
35Vietnam Changes American Policies The cost of fighting a war effectively killed Johnson’s Great Society programsCongress passed the War Powers Act in 1973.The act restricted the President’s ability to send the nation to war.