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How useful are sources A, B, C in explaining why the U.S.A. involved in Vietnam?Source A is a quote from the U.S. President Johnson to the American public in 1965.

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Introduction

How useful are sources A, B, C in explaining why the U.S.A. involved in Vietnam? After WW2 Vietnam was separated into the communist north, and the democratic south governed by the corrupt American supported leader Diem. Americas initial aim was to prevent communism spreading, particularly from North Vietnam. A guerrilla army emerged who were sympathetic to the communist beliefs of North Vietnam called the Vietcong and were lead by Ho Chi Minh. In this coursework I intend to assess the usefulness of three sources related to the war in Vietnam. Source A is a quote from the U.S. President Johnson to the American public in 1965. The President is speaking one month after 'operation rolling thunder' and is trying to justify to the public the reasons why America is in Vietnam. One of the most interesting things about this source is that the President does not once directly mention communism or the domino theory although he does make references to communism and the Truman Doctrine, he says 'We fight in Vietnam because we have a promise to keep'. Here he is talking about the Truman Doctrine but he is twisting it to make it sound heroic and dutiful. 'Our objective is the independence of South Vietnam and the freedom of their people'. ...read more.

Middle

He also describes Vietnam as a complete mess asking what is it worth fighting for as it means nothing to him and his country and that he feels there is no way out. America had fallen into its own trap in Vietnam according to this source as the President did not want to fight in Vietnam and he did not think he could pull out without risking his own position. 'Of course if you start running from the communists, they may chase you to your own kitchen' the President believes the domino theory will come into practice which America is meant to be preventing from happening, if he pulls out. He also comments on the war saying 'This is a terrible thing we are getting ready to do.' He believes that it is the wrong thing to do the War in Vietnam but does not see any other option. This source again gives little indication to the reasons that America is in Vietnam it does not give any of the history in Vietnam or of communism though it is less biased than the previous source but does not include enough of the reasons. Source C is the complete opposite of the previous sources it is biased in completely the opposite way to Source A it is taken from an interview with Professor Noam Chomsky who is strictly anti - U.S. ...read more.

Conclusion

The reason America had such influence in South Vietnam was to try and prevent the spread of communism from the North, it was not particularly useful or profitable to the U.S. in its current position. A Guerrilla army called the Vietcong infiltrated South Vietnam from the North. The U.S. used an attack on U.S. ships in the gulf of Tongking as an excuse to launch a full scale assault on North Vietnam. The sources most importantly did not include any information on the U.S. policy of counter- communism which was most relevant to their involvement in Vietnam. Communism was a big issue for the U.S. and the Truman Doctrine stated that they were to aid any country threatened by communism. The sources completely ignored this although Source A hinted at it this was never put across as a definitive reason why America was in Vietnam. Sources A, B, C were not very useful at all in giving reasons why the U.S. was in Vietnam, all were biased to an extent and ignored many of the most vital reasons completely. These sources would not be very useful if they were the only information you had on the Vietnam war as they all lack vital information and reasons to the events in Vietnam. Although this doesn't mean that the sources are not useful as they would be helpful if studying the war from different viewpoints but none are very useful as to why America got involved. ...read more.

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