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

How far was the decision to rollback past the 38th parallel a military and political blunder by the USA?

Extracts from this document...


How far was the decision to rollback past the 38th parallel a military and political blunder by the USA? In the beginning, the USA planned to contain S.Korea, but when the opportunity arose to capture N.Korea they could not turn it down; as it would be a significant step to stopping communism in Asia. Although, the Chinese had stated that they would help defend N.Korea if any attacks commenced. The USA called this theory "rollback", as they where trying to undo all of the recent communist uprisings in Asia. I will investigate whether or not the decision to rollback over the 38th parallel was a successful political and military decision. First of all I will look to see whether the decision to rollback was beneficial towards the military. One reason for this was because the USA wanted a foothold in Asia. This was clear, as after China fell to communism in 1949 the USA needed a country in Asia to influence other countries. If the USA had Korea as foothold in Asia they could exert their influence by making capitalism look superior over communism. They could make it look superior by helping to rebuild Korea and by increasing their economic status through Asia. This made the decision to rollback beneficial as they could therefore prevent more communist uprisings in Asia, thus stopping the domino theory A further reason why the decision appeared to be first-rate was because it protected S.Korea even further. Although pushing forward is actually not considered protecting, in this case it was. ...read more.


As a result this made the decision look like a disaster, this is because for their "rollback theory" to work they needed to maintain momentum, certainly not be pushed back. Another reason why it was a poor mistake by the US military to allow rollback was that the Chinese heavily outnumbered them. Not only did the Chinese outnumber the USA but they were also a large well-trained army that used good tactics. These are the two biggest factors you could have in the war, but yet the USA was still confident that they could win against China. As a result I see this a poor decision by the USA because they never had a chance to win against the Chinese considering how many of them there were and how well-trained they were, but they chose to ignore the threat of China. Another reason why the decision was dreadful was due to the fact that the USA were dragging themselves into a bigger war. Whereas before they were just defending their allies in a civil war, they are now the attackers. The USA's plan was to take over N.Korea, a country both heavily affiliated with Russia. This was a very stupid decision as it was bringing a super power into this, otherwise, small war. Also before the USA chose to attack N.Korea they were told by China if they attack their allies they would help to defend them. This escalated the war even further due to China's large population, which greatly outnumbered the UN. ...read more.


Another reason that made the decision a shocking one was that it pretty much guaranteed the Republicans the new election next year as they lost. This makes it a bad political decision as this is the worst thing you can do in politics - make an error so bad that people want to vote for the opposing party. The reason it guaranteed the opposing party the elections was because the loss was so significantly poor. This made the decision a bad one as it helped the opposing party to win the elections. The final reason that made the decision a bad one is that the communists will now believe that the USA is weak. The communists would believe that the USA are weak because the USA wanted the war, but did not manage to push the Chinese/Koreans at all and in some cases even fell back. This is bad because more people will support the communist regime and the communists will feel that they have the upper hand over the capitalists. This makes this decision a bad one as more people will be supporting the communists and the communists feel that they have the upper hand. To conclude on the political decision I feel that the decision to chose rollback was a significantly catastrophic one. This is because, it ruined Truman's political career, the republicans were guaranteed the next election and also the communists now believe that you are weak. The most catastrophic of these decisions was that of allowing the communists to believe that you are weak. This is bad because the communists will try to take advantage of this by making you look weak, which will result in more communist followers. ...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 History of the USA, 1840-1968 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 History of the USA, 1840-1968 essays

  1. How far do these sources support the view expressed in source one that, in ...

    This means that the revolts that occurred before 1069 are not mentioned. A final limitation, which I believe is the most key, is a list of rules that William I laid down when he first conquered England. The first rule was "that above all things he (William)

  2. Revision notes - the USA 1945 to 1980

    Later that year came the Washington march when over 250,000 blacks and whites marched together in the capital in support of the bill. It was at this march that King gave his famous "I have a dream" speech, which had a tremendous impact on US public opinion.

  1. In considering the development of the USA in the years 1815-1917, how far can ...

    'Transcontinental Railroads made modern America'- Simon Scharma, this quote relates to the railroads being a contributing factor of westward expansion and creating America, the Pacific Railway Act was set in 1862 before the Civil War, but measures for Railways was already estimated before the Civil war which was catalyst to

  2. "In its intervention in South East Asia in the years 1950-1964, the USA was ...

    From the viewpoint of the U.S.A, in the years post World War 2, the U.S.S.R was extending her sphere of influence throughout Eastern Europe, there was a war in Korea, China had become communist and North Vietnam was winning its fight against the French.

  1. Discuss the influences on Malcolm X and how they helped form his ideology in ...

    He read the works of Dubois, Marx, and Nietzsche. He read about Lenin, Hitler and Ghandi amongst others. In later years when asked about his alma mater, he replied "books".6 It was in prison he was exposed to diverse ideologies spanning the spectrum.

  2. Comparison of Presidents Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower and Lyndon Johnson

    While Eisenhower did make promises to continue the advancement of civil rights in his State of the Union address, it was only mentioned in a very small portion of his lengthy speech, suggesting that it may not have been the most important factor in his mind.

  1. a) "How far do these sources support the view expressed in source one that, ...

    wishes one God to be revered throughout his whole realm, one faith in Christ to be kept ever inviolate, and peace and security to be preserved between English and Normans". William's want, and favor towards peace is fully recognised in this statement.

  2. How far do you agree that the KKK had a strong political influence and ...

    KKK became a movement of vengeance both towards the Republican regime but also towards the influx of migrants.

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