The war in Vietnam started with the fear in the United States for communism.
This resulted in the idea of containment. The idea of containment meant that the USA( and the West) would do everything in their power to stop the spread of communism.
There would even be military action taken if needed and that was the case in Vietnam.
In 1954, the French left Vietnam divided into two separate parts. North Vietnam and South Vietnam.
The North was being ruled by Ho Chi Minh and the South was being ruled by an Americanized Vietnamese named Ngo Dinh Diem and supported by America.
North Vietnam wanted to combine the two parts to form one whole country again and to free South Vietnam from the Western capitalist orientated governance and the Americans.
From 1959 more and more South Vietnamese people disagreed with the political ideas of their government and joined the Vietcong (a group of communist guerrillas who tried to overthrow Ngo Dinh Diem’s government)
As the Vietcong grew stronger and controlled nearly half of Vietnam, the US decided to change their policy and take direct militarily action.
The first US troops entered Vietnam in March 1965 and the fighting began.
Although the Americans were much better equipped than the Vietcong, they could not win the war.
The Vietcong fought a guerrilla war against the Americans which is a big reason why the Americans and the South Vietnamese army had a hard time fighting them.
When Richard Nixon became president of America he decided to end Americas involvement in the Vietnamese war and he began to withdraw troops.
On January 27, 1973 the US arranged a cease-fire.
Despite the treaty, the North and South continued fighting soon afterwards, but there were no US troops involved in the fighting.
The South eventually surrendered to North Vietnam on April 30, 1975 and the war ended.
Soon the two parts were combined again as the Socialist (communist) Republic of Vietnam. Vietnam was now a communist country and America lost the war.
The Vietnam war left behind long term effects on both Vietnam and America.
In Vietnam, the North Vietnamese army murdered thousands of South Vietnamese after the Americans left. Also after the Vietnam war Vietnam was completely destroyed. Many towns and villages were demolished by the bombings of the Americans and its farmland was poisoned by American chemical warfare. Even today, Vietnam remains one of the most poverty stricken countries in the world.
In America, the Vietnam war had a heavy blow on their economy. There was a huge inflation.
But that was not the only problem the Vietnam war caused.
The American government lost the trust of their citizens and a lot of American soldiers came back home traumatised, maimed or didn’t came back at all.
In the end, the Vietnamese war was just a huge failure for the US. They didn’t stop the spread of communism
in Vietnam, they just delayed it.
...(download the rest of the essay above)