• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explain why the United States became increasingly involved in the war in Vietnam

Extracts from this document...


Explain why the United States became increasingly involved in the war in Vietnam Vietnam lies in South East Asia; it is bordered by Laos and Cambodia to the West and China to the North. Its two major cities are Hanoi in the North and Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City) in the South. Vietnam is a mainly agricultural country and most of the population is Buddhist. The history of modern Vietnam starts in the 1870s and 1880s when France annexed Vietnam (known then as French-Indo-China) into their colonial empire. From then until the start of World War two in 1939, France imported their culture, architecture and language. Some Vietnamese adopted the French way of life, but others resisted French rule and were ruthlessly put down by the authorities. At the start of the Second World War, Vietnam was ruled only in name Emperor Boa Dia, it was still a French colony however. The defeat of France by Germany in Europe made it impossible for her to protect much of her overseas empire. When the Japanese made a "request" to move troops into French-Indo-China in July 1941, the French were too weak to refuse. Five months later, when Asia and the Pacific were at war, a rebel leader, Ho Chi Minh, came back to Vietnam. ...read more.


Diem received the United States full support, because he was Catholic and anti-communist. Diem refused to hold the election, as he believed North Vietnam would not allow free elections to take place. Now it looked that Vietnam was to remain split into two, opened up a lot of worrying problems to America. The North was getting stronger, but the South despite American support was getting weaker. The USA soon believed that the North would take over all of the country, and that all of Vietnam would become communist. The Americans thought that what was happening in Vietnam could happen at a much larger scale all over the world. The Domino Theory, as it was known, scared America as they thought that if lots of countries became communist, it would eventually get to America. Americans liked life how it was, and didn't want to follow the ideals of equality and communism. This helped the government in American start the war, as it had the full backing of the American people. America had to step in Vietnam as Diem was becoming disliked for being extremely harsh (he imprisoned 12000 of his own people) and his tactics for fighting the Vietminh were ineffective, for example 4000 South Vietnamese politicians were being assassinated each year and Diem could do nothing. ...read more.


In December 1964 there were 16,000 US troops in South Vietnam, 2 years on and this total had rocketed to 268,000 and in January 1968, it reached a peak at well over 500,000 troops. In Conclusion there were a number of factors that brought the United States into the war in Vietnam. There was the impact of the Cold War, where America attempted to keep foreign nations from becoming Communist. The ultimate fear America had of communism spreading throughout the world and trying to stop the Domino effect. The Failure of the Geneva Convention to halt Communism in Vietnam. The failure of President Diem and his weaknesses as a leader, which included the Strategic Hamlet Program which was a costly, complete failure and encouraged communism in South Vietnam and ultimately led to the founding of the Vietcong. And finally the Gulf of Tonkin incident, which escalated tension between America and North Vietnam. In my opinion the most important factor to why the US got involved in Vietnam was their fear of communism spreading throughout the world. If this hadn't been the case then America probably wouldn't have supported the French in their attempt to retake Vietnam and then wouldn't have gradually got involved with money and troops. ?? ?? ?? ?? Page 1 of 4 Vietnam History Coursework By Adam Whybro 11R ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level International History, 1945-1991 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Explain why America became increasingly involved in the affairs of Vietnam

    3 star(s)

    The Americans thought that anything with 'communist' in it was an insult. In December 1960 the communists in Hanoi set up the National Liberation Front in the South. The NLF, though, did not consist only of communists. It had broad appeal to middle-class professionals such as doctors and teachers, as well as peasants and workers.

  2. The Vietnam War – G.C.S.E. History Coursework

    saying his daughter was not a hippie bum and that not all AWM members are hippies. Source 20 has an average, married with children American office-working woman - no hippie at all - protesting in the place of war.. The fact that she is shocked when people called her a communist communicates sincerity.

  1. I will be looking at how the U.S became increasingly involved Vietnam, the problems ...

    persecution many of them received from the Christian government in South Vietnam. The support for the Viet Cong was increasing day by day. They were ridding Vietnam of the government that persecuted so many of their fellow Buddhists. The Americans knew that to have any chance of defeating the Communists

  2. The Vietnam War was a war of communism against Capitalism. The North of Vietnam ...

    This led to the introduction of Smart Bombs. These were specially designed to hit specific targets, which meant that the US now had the ability to destroy anything that was associated with the Vietcong. This tactic would have worked extremely well except for the Vietcong introduction of anti-aircraft missiles.

  1. Analysis of Vietnam Renunciation Speech - Lyndon B. Johnson General: ...

    With such an Asia, our country-and the world will be far more secure than it is tonight. I believe that a peaceful Asia is far nearer to reality because of what America has done in Vietnam. l believe that the men who endure the dangers of battle fighting there for

  2. The Battle of Dien Bien Phu

    forces was that we had more of a cause to be fighting for. We were more unified in our fight and were fighting for Vietnam's independence and reunification. The French were ignorant of our possession of heavy artillery and our ability to move such weapons to the mountain crests overlooking the French encampment.

  1. Why did the United States become involved in Vietnam in the 1950's and 1960's?

    Over the history of the United States this had not been such a problem. Before the First World War was an isolationist nation, it did not want to be involved in foreign affairs.

  2. America In Vietnam, 1953-73

    refugees and to live in filthy, unhealthy, overcrowded camps -the American aid money spent on maintaining the refugees for a year was less than the money spent on the war in one half of a day Harrison Salisbury (a Pulitzer Prize winning New York Times reporter).

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work