How and why did Eisenhower increased commitment to Vietnam

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How and why did the Eisenhower increase US commitment to Vietnam?

For many years, the American presidents have cited the Domino Theory as the reason for US involvement in Indochina. During his term, Eisenhower had greatly increased US efforts in Vietnam in war against Communism. US military advisers were sent to Vietnam to aid the French and financial commitment was made. However, it is arguable whether or not the interest of Vietnam was important to the Americans at the time and if Eisenhower’s involvement was truly justified.

When Eisenhower was inaugurated as the 34th US president, he succeeded Truman whom had previous commitments to the French and the emperor of Vietnam, Bao Dai. He continued to finance the French military and the dumb emperor. Just before the military unrest in Dien Bien Phu between the Vietminh and the French militaries, Eisenhower had given financial aid to the French $385 million dollars worth of armaments to fight against the communists. By supporting the French soldiers in a war against communism, Eisenhower prevented any American soldiers from being sent in yet another war in Indochina, especially as immediate after the Korean civil war.

7th May 1954, delegations representing France, Bao Dai, the Vietminh, Cambodia, Laos, the Unisted States, the Soviet Union, the People’s Republic of China and Great Britain assembled in Geneva in attempt to resolve the war in Indochina. Like Korea, Vietnam was divided into two separate states, the north governed by communists and the south in which Bao Dai and his prime Minister Diem took charge. The French were supposedly to stay in south of Vietnam to enforce the cease-fire until the nationwide elections in 1956. Diem realized with the popularity gained by Ho Chi Minh, communist leader in the north, he would never stand a chance in winning and turned to the Americans instead. Eisenhower administration had increased aid to Diem after he had won a fraud election in which he claimed 605,025 vietnamese had voted for him when in reality only 450,000 registered to vote, by giving him hundreds of millions of dollars and advice on politics, land reforms and covert operations against Vietminh. American recommendations had included sabotage and recruitment of fortune tellers to predict doom of communism. America also helped in transporting one million northern Vietnamese into the south; most of the refugees were catholic and supporters of Diem. By 1960, Eisenhower had given over a billion dollar to support Diem’s government which was rapidly deteriorating due to his oppressive and unpopular administration. Many historians raised the question as to why Eisenhower had supported an unpopular regime and whether it was a wise move on his part.

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Not long before the showdown at Dien Bien Phu, Eisenhower had given the French 385 million dollars worth of arms and weaponry to help fight against the Vietminh. Eisenhower decided to help the French not only because of inheriting previous commitment by Truman but also because he did not want to send American troops to Indochina so soon after the Korean War. He felt that paying other nation to fight an American cause; fight against communism was far more convenient and cheaper. He provided further aid when the French were losing the battle in early 1954 by sending US ...

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