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Nixon and the End of the War Mr. Williams 10 th Grade U.S. History.

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Presentation on theme: "Nixon and the End of the War Mr. Williams 10 th Grade U.S. History."— Presentation transcript:

1 Nixon and the End of the War Mr. Williams 10 th Grade U.S. History

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13 Silent Majority “Middle America” who disapproved of the anti-war protestors and supported the Vietnam War This group would become what was known as the “New Right” who would be largely responsible for the conservative movement in the 1980s

14 “Peace with Honor” Pledged to pull troops out of war 1969: 540,000 troops 1972: 24,000 troops Vietnamization: Turning over more of the fighting in Vietnam to the South Vietnamese while gradually bringing troops home

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17 Laos and Cambodia Nixon secretly ordered bombing campaigns and sent ARVN troops into both of these countries in 1969 and 1970 “I want the North Vietnamese to believe that I’ve reached the point where I might do anything to stop the war”

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20 Khmer Rouge Led by Pol Pot Wanted to take Cambodia back to “Year Zero” Forced population on to collectivized farms in an attempt to make it a communist system

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24 My Lai Massacre March 16, 1968 U.S. soldiers killed 567 men, women and children “I sent them a good boy, and they made him a murderer.” American people find out about this in November of 1969

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27 Army concludes that top military officers deliberately covered up the massacre 25 soldiers and officers charged Lieutenant William Calley Jr. only person ever convicted “Our Colonel kept asking us, ‘Where’s your body count, where’s your body count’. I did what ever lieutenant had to: I finally got us a body count.”

28 Why was Nixon able to win the Election of 1968? What was his strategy in Vietnam? What was the My Lai Massacre? What happened at Kent State University in May 1970?

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30 Credibility Gap Widens America learns of My Lai Massacre in the Pentagon Papers were leaked to the New York Times Secret government documents about the war which proved government was misleading Americans about the war

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34 The War Ends 1973: Paris Peace Accords U.S., North and South Vietnamese Governments and Vietcong Removal of all U.S. troops and military advisers but allowed North to remain in place

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36 Both sides agreed to return P.O.W.s including over 600 Americans North and South would remain split and this meant that U.S. could withdrawal keeping its promise of not allowing Communism to spread

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38 South Vietnam Falls 1975 North Vietnam launched New offensive in the South Achieved victory in just 5 months May 1, 1975, Saigon became Ho Chi Minh City Last workers at embassy are pulled out in 1975

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40 Vietnam by the Numbers 185,000 South Vietnamese soldiers and 450,000 civilians died 58,000 Americans dead, 300,000 wounded, and 2,500 missing Over 2,000,000 NVA and Vietcong were dead 1,500,000 refugees fled after Saigon was captured

41 Political Impact More than $150,000,000,000 spent on the Vietnam War Wars Powers Act 1973: Sets a 60-day limit on the presidential commitment of U.S. troops to foreign conflicts without specific Congressional authorization or declaration of war DISTRUST OF GOVERNMENT

42 “The left hated us for killing, and the right hated us for not killing enough.” “Feelings of rejection and scorn that a bunch of depressed and confused young men experienced when they returned home from doing what their country told them to do.”

43 “Prior to the defeat in Vietnam, most Americans had been content to think of themselves as honorable people, unerringly drawn to the side of what was true and noble and right, not the kind of people to push women and children away from the last helicopter out of town. If the war proved them wrong in this judgment, it was because the war was never honestly declared and because, at the end of it, nobody, certainly none of its official sponsors, could say why 58,000 American soldiers were dead and another 300,000 wounded. What could be said was that America had lost not only a war but also the belief in its virtue.” –Lewis Lapham 1989

44 “Our waging the war, not our losing of it, disgraced us in men’s eyes.... Our national effort was squalid in concept and execution. We tried to bend an ancient and civilized people to our will, and we failed, but not before we used our overwhelming power and technology to the full. We cratered vast stretches of Vietnam with our bombs. We destroyed villages without number and herded their inhabitants into stockades. We poisoned the wells, the forests and the farms with Agent Orange. We bulldozed millions of acres of forest and jungle. All in all we killed over two million of them, mostly civilians. We napalmed women and children. Many of our soldiers disintegrated and did terrible things which haunt them today.“ –Charles Owen Rice 1982

45 “It is time we recognized that ours was, in truth, a noble cause. A small country newly free from colonial rule sought our help in establishing self- rule and the means of self-defense against a totalitarian neighbor bent on conquest. We dishonor the memory of 50,000 young Americans who died in that cause when we give way to feelings of guilt as if we were doing something shameful, and we have been shabby in our treatment of those who returned. They fought as well and as bravely as any Americans have ever fought in any war. They deserve our gratitude, our respect and our continuing concern.” –Ronald Reagan 1980

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49 What was the impact of Vietnam(soldiers, home front, America today)? How should we remember this conflict? 3.8 Format


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