History GCSE Cold War

alexander.burden
Mind Map by , created over 5 years ago

Mind Map on History GCSE Cold War, created by alexander.burden on 04/02/2014.

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alexander.burden
Created by alexander.burden over 5 years ago
Cold War (1945-1975)
sagar.joban
How did the Cold War develop?
Elisa de Toro Arias
The Cold War: An Overview
Andrea Leyden
Geography Restless Earth
sophieelizabeth
AQA GCSE Chemistry Unit 2
Gabi Germain
Conferences of the Cold War
Alina A
Bay of Pigs Invasion : April 1961
Alina A
Key policies and organisations Cold War
Elisa de Toro Arias
Development of Cold War Tensions
c7jeremy
Truman Doctrine, Marshall Plan, Cominform and Comecon
Alina A
History GCSE Cold War
1 Cuban Missile Crisis 1962
1.1 Order Of Events
1.1.1 16th October: President Kennedy is informed of the missile build up in Cuba. Ex-Comm is formed..
1.1.2 20th October: Kennedy decides the blockade of Cuba.
1.1.3 22nd October; Kennedy announces the blockade and calls on the Soviet Union to withdraw the weapons
1.1.4 24th October: The blockade begins. The first missile- carrying ships, accompanied by a Soviet submarine, approach the 500-mile (800 km) long blockade zone. Then suddenly at 10:32 am, the 20 soviet ships which are closet to the zone stop or turn around.
1.1.5 25th October: Despite this, intensive aerial photographing reveals that work on the missile bases proceeds rapidly, and even without more missiles they would be able to do lots of damage.
1.1.6 26th October: Kennedy receives a long personal letter from Khrushchev. The letter claims the missiles on Cuba are purely defensive, but goes on " If assurances are given that the USA would not participate in an attack on Cuba and the blockade was lifted, then the question of the removal or the destruction of the missile sites would be an entirely different question." This is the first time Khrushchev has admitted the presence of the missiles.
1.1.7 27th October: Khrushchev sends a second letter - revising his proposal - that the Jupiter missiles in turkey must be removed firs as well. Also an American U-2 plane is shot down over Cuba and The President is advised to launch an immediate reprisal attack. Instead he publicly responds to the first letter agreeing to the first letter accepting the terms. He also says if the Soviet Union does not withdraw, an attack will follow. he secretly Kennedy sends his brother Bobby to negotiate with the Soviet Ambassador about the Jupiter missiles.
1.1.8 28th October: Khrushchev replies to Kennedy confirming the offensive missiles will be dismantled and removed, as are the Jupiter Missiles. Yet, it is made to seem as if the USSR backed down.
1.1.9 23th October: Kennedy receives a letter from Khrushchev saying that Soviet ships will not observe the blockade. Khrushchev does no admit the presence of missiles on Cuba
1.2 Why Did The Soviet Union Put Missiles On Cuba
1.2.1 To defend Cuba
1.2.2 To trap the USA
1.2.2.1 wanted to draw them into war
1.2.3 To bargain with the USA
1.2.3.1 Act as leverage
1.2.4 To test the USA
1.2.4.1 Mirrors the 1961 Berlin Crisis: 1958: Khrushchev issues a speech that the USA should pull out of Berlin( an airlift wold not be possible as 1.65 million Germans had fled into west berlin to flee the East by 1960. 1961 : Vienna summit, Khrushchev doesn't give in and gives the US 6 months. 1961: 150,000 Us reservists sent into west Berlin. But overnight, Ulbricht, the leader of East Germany built a barbed wire on the border which then became the Berlin Wall.
1.2.5 To get the upper hand in the arms race
1.2.5.1 there was a large gap between the Soviet's nuclear missile arsenal an the USA's, so would take any opportunity to bridge the gap
1.3 Build Up
1.3.1 Bay Of Pigs
1.3.1.1 JFK
1.3.1.1.1 Why did he support it?
1.3.1.1.1.1 He had been told it would be an easy victory by the CIA and he needed to remove the communist threat.
1.3.1.1.2 Changes he made
1.3.1.1.2.1 Hide any American involvement by scaling down the bombing to 6 planes and cancelling air support during the invasion.
1.3.1.2 Consequences
1.3.1.2.1 Castro's alliance with the USSR was strengthened and therefore the communist threat was more prominent than ever. Another consequence for JFK was that he had been humiliated and his authority and that of the white house had seriously been undermined.
1.3.1.3 Why did it fail
1.3.1.3.1 Too few bombing as there only 3 planes were destroyed in the strike, and Castro mistook it for a full scale invasion so mobilised all of his troops therefore all ex-nationals were captured or killed within 72 hours.
1.3.1.4 The Bay of Pigs Invasion, known in Latin America as Invasión de Bahía de Cochinos (or Invasión de Playa Girón or Batalla de Girón), was a failed military invasion of Cuba undertaken by the CIA-sponsored paramilitary group Brigade 2506 on 17 April 1961. A counter-revolutionary military, trained and funded by the United States government's Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Brigade 2506 fronted the armed wing of the Democratic Revolutionary Front (DRF) and intended to overthrow the revolutionary left-wing government of Fidel Castro. Launched from Guatemala, the invading force was defeated within three days by the Cuban armed forces, under the direct command of Prime Minister Fidel Castro.
1.3.2 Cuba Under Castro
1.3.2.1 Pre-1959
1.3.2.1.1 1890s
1.3.2.1.1.1 America fights short war with Spain for the control of Cuba, a 'puppet' government is set up that is pro-American
1.3.2.1.1.2 1899 The USA have a large military base on Cuba (Guantanamo Bay)
1.3.2.1.2 1933-1959
1.3.2.1.2.1 Cuba governed by corrupt dictator Fulgencio Batista who was backed by the American government
1.3.2.1.3 1940s-1950s
1.3.2.1.3.1 American businesses take control of 95% of Cuban business. The entire sugar crop is sold to American firms. Cuba is effectively a state of America
1.3.2.1.4 1920s
1.3.2.1.4.1 American organised criminals set up casinos in Havana with cheap booze and prostitutes. this is an attractive prospect for Americans in Prohibition.
1.3.2.2 1959
1.3.2.2.1 Fidel Castro seized power in Cuba. He was helped by Che Guevara. Until then Cuba had been under US influence and any companies had invested heavily in the country.
1.3.2.2.2 Castro asked for help but the USA refused, so at first Castro nationalised the oil refineries by sending in his malicia. In turn President Eisenhower cut all sugar import. Castro the retaliated by nationalising a further $1 billion of assets (all the assets in Cuba). To this President Eisenhower ordered a trade embargo.
1.3.2.3 1960
1.3.2.3.1 The Soviet Union signed an agreement to buy 1,000,000 tonnes of sugar every year. This tied the two counties closely together. There was now a communist all in the western hemisphere
1.3.2.4 1961
1.3.2.4.1 April: By of Pigs invasion launched and failed.
1.3.2.4.2 December: Castro announces he is a communist. Therefore there is now a communist country just 90 miles away from the USA.
1.3.2.5 1962
1.3.2.5.1 July: 43,000 soviet soldiers/technicians arrive with nuclear missiles and missile launchers in Cuba
1.3.2.5.2 16th October: A US spy planes took photographs which show Soviet missile bases being built on Cuba. This renders all US defence systems useless.
1.3.2.5.3 18th October: A Soviet fleet of ships is spotted in the Atlantic on the way to Cuba.
1.4 Kennedy's Options
1.4.1 Do Nothing
1.4.1.1 Advantages
1.4.1.1.1 USA had bigger nuclear arsenal
1.4.1.1.2 USA could destroy the USSR
1.4.1.1.3 Biggest threat to World Peace was to overreact
1.4.1.2 Disadvantages
1.4.1.2.1 Khrushchev had lied and so he would seem weak.
1.4.2 Diplomatic Pressure
1.4.2.1 Advantages
1.4.2.1.1 Avoid conflict
1.4.2.2 Disadvantages
1.4.2.2.1 If the USA was forced to back down it would be a sign of weakness.
1.4.3 Blockade
1.4.3.1 Advantages
1.4.3.1.1 Show the USA was serious.
1.4.3.1.2 Not an act of war.
1.4.3.1.3 USA had a strong Navy.
1.4.3.1.4 Put the burden on Khrushchev about what to do next.
1.4.3.1.5 Kennedy could still take another option if this did not work.
1.4.3.2 Disadvantages
1.4.3.2.1 Wouldn't solve main problem as the missile bases wold be available in 1 week.
1.4.3.2.2 Soviets could retaliate by blockading Berlin again.
1.4.4 Invasion
1.4.4.1 Advantages
1.4.4.1.1 Would get rid of missiles and Castro.
1.4.4.1.2 Troops were already trained and available.
1.4.4.2 Disadvantages
1.4.4.2.1 Almost guarantee an equivalent Soviet response, either to protect Cuba or within the Soviet sphere of influence - for example a take-over of Berlin.
1.4.5 Surgical air attack
1.4.5.1 Advantages
1.4.5.1.1 Destroy the missiles before they were ready to use.
1.4.5.2 Disadvantages
1.4.5.2.1 Destruction of all sites could not be guaranteed.
1.4.5.2.2 Would inevitably kill Soviet soldiers, so the Soviet Union may retaliate immediately.
1.4.5.2.3 To attack without advance warning was seen as immoral.
1.5 Who Won?
1.5.1 Evidence JFK Emerged Badly
1.5.1.1 France, led by de Gaulle, left NATO
1.5.1.2 Cuba still communist and highly armed
1.5.1.3 Some criticized him for not invanding
1.5.1.4 European leaders/allies were annoyed they were not consulted.
1.5.2 Evidence Khrushchev Emerged Well
1.5.2.1 Cuba still communist and an ally.
1.5.2.2 Improved reputation as he had shown he defends and protects his allies from future attacks.
1.5.2.3 Jupiter missiles removed.
1.5.2.4 Praised for his role as responsible peacemaker.
1.5.3 Evidence Khrushchev Emerged Badly
1.5.3.1 Seen as weak.
1.5.3.2 Chairman Mao of China was unimpressed so pursued a more independent path.
1.5.3.3 Highlighted he was not securely in power - overthrown in 1946.
1.5.4 Evidence JFK Emerged Well
1.5.4.1 Greatly improved reputation in his own country and throughout the West
1.5.4.2 Khrushchev stood down and removed the threat.
1.5.4.3 Proved he could avoid war and handle things diplomatically.
2 Who Was To Blame?
2.1 Traditionalist View
2.1.1 Held by most westerners, Stalin's aggressive expansionism to blame
2.2 Revisionist View
2.2.1 USA to blame for wanting open trade and forcing capitalism on countries, also for making the atomic bomb
2.3 Post-Revisionist View
2.3.1 Caused by mutual misunderstanding as both wanted peace, German question just got out of hand.
2.4 Post-1991 View
2.4.1 USSR did not want confrontation, just caused by clash of ideology.
2.5 Realist View
2.5.1 Caused by Soviet rise in power and the fear in the West this caused.
2.6 Liberal View
2.6.1 Military conflict caused by poor policies and missed opportunities.
2.7 Radical View
2.7.1 Both powers just wanted to increase influence with the excuse of ideology
3 Origins
3.1 Stalin's Take Over of Eastern Europe
3.1.1 Czechoslovakia
3.1.1.1 Left wing coalition existed in 1945
3.1.1.2 In 1946 the communists were the largest single party but still in coalition.
3.1.1.3 In 1948 the Communist party's position became threatened so they banned all other parties and became a one party state
3.1.2 East Germany
3.1.2.1 Given to the USSR after the war and run by the Red Arm
3.1.2.2 In 1949 became known as the German Democratic Republic.
3.1.3 Comecon
3.1.3.1 Short for Council for Mutual Economic Assistance.
3.1.3.2 Set up a bank that benefited the USSR the most, a market for them for cheap raw material; e.g Poland forced to sell coal to them at one tenth the open market price.
3.1.3.3 The Idea was to co-ordinate trade between the Communist countries, so that they would only trade with each other.
3.1.4 Cominform
3.1.4.1 Short for Communist Information Beareau
3.1.4.2 Was set up in October 1947 to co-ordinate communist governments.
3.1.4.3 Regularly brought communist leaders to Moscow to speak to Stalin and his ministers, where they would tell them what to do.
3.1.4.4 Allowed Stalin to keep a close eye on all the Communist countries he controlled
3.1.4.5 He spotted independent-minded leaders and replaced them with people who were completely loyal to him. the only Communist leader who escaped this close control was Tito who resented being controlled by Cominform. He was expelled for this hostility in 1948
3.1.5 Romania
3.1.5.1 Abolished Monarchy in 1947
3.1.5.2 Communist Prime minister in 1945
3.1.6 Hungary
3.1.6.1 Largest single party was communist party in 1947
3.1.6.2 Communists imprisoned opposition and attacked church leaders.
3.1.7 Bulgaria
3.1.7.1 Left wing coalition won election in 1945.
3.1.7.2 Communists executed opposition
3.1.8 Yugoslavia
3.1.8.1 Marshall Tito led war time resistance to the Nazis
3.1.8.2 He was elected in 1949, but wanted to apply communism in his own way.
3.1.8.3 Expelled from Cominform in 1948
3.1.9 Poland
3.1.9.1 After the war the communists joined the coalition.
3.1.9.2 1947 the non-communist leaders were forced into exile.
3.2 Yalta: 4 - 11th February 1945
3.2.1 Agreement
3.2.1.1 Peace should be kept by joining the United Nations
3.2.1.2 Countries liberated from Nazi rule would be allowed free elections and pick whichever party they wanted
3.2.1.3 Germany was to be divided among the victorious Nations
3.2.1.4 Eastern Europe would be allowed to be a soviet sphere of influence.
3.2.1.5 Stalin proposing a toast saying "may it (their alliance) be strong"
3.2.2 Disagreement/ Ill Feeling
3.2.2.1 Poland
3.2.2.1.1 Stalin wanted to control Poland as protection as he had faced 3 years of Nazi invasion resulting in 20 million deaths.
3.2.2.1.2 Churchill wanted it to be a free nation.
3.2.2.2 Greece
3.2.2.2.1 Churchill wanted to keep an important trade route open. and stop it from going communist.
3.2.2.3 Churchill writing to Roosevelt that the Soviet Union was a threat.
3.2.2.4 Stalin talking to Milon Djilas saying Churchill would pick-pocket you for a Kopek but Roosevelt only goes for bigger coins
3.3 Potsdam
3.3.1 Leaders
3.3.1.1 Stalin, Truman & Atlee
3.3.2 Changes Since Yalta
3.3.2.1 America Has New President
3.3.2.1.1 Deatails
3.3.2.1.1.1 America has a new President; 12th April 1945l Roosevelt dies and is replaced by his vice Harry S Truman.
3.3.2.1.2 Impact on Relations
3.3.2.1.2.1 HST was more anti-communist so the sides were more difinative
3.3.2.2 The Allies had tested the atomic Bomb
3.3.2.2.1 Deatails
3.3.2.2.1.1 16th July 1945 USA tested the Atomic Bomb, Truman informed Stalin about it at the conference.
3.3.2.2.2 Impact on Relations
3.3.2.2.2.1 Stalin became on edge and joined an Arms Race
3.3.2.3 Stalin's armies occupied most of Eastern Europe
3.3.2.3.1 Deatails
3.3.2.3.1.1 After liberating counties Soviet troops stayed there, so Stalin effectively controlled Czechoslovakia, Poland, Finland, Baltic States, Hungary, Bulgaria and Romania.
3.3.2.3.2 Impact on Relations
3.3.2.3.2.1 The West feared a communist takeover so were on edge and worried.
3.3.3 Disagreements
3.3.3.1 Germany
3.3.3.1.1 Stalin wanted to cripple Germany to Protect the USSR.
3.3.3.1.2 Truman was keen not repeat the mistakes of WW1 and was ready to invest a lot of money.
3.3.3.2 Reparations
3.3.3.2.1 Soviet Union had been devastated with 20 million dead, Stalin wanted compensation for war damages.
3.3.3.2.2 Truman did not want to repeat the mistakes of WW1 and resisted Stalin's demands.
3.3.3.3 Soviet Policy in Eastern Europe
3.3.3.3.1 Stalin got agreement at Yalta to set up pro-soviet governments and said "If the Slav people are united, no-one will dare move a finger against them."
3.3.3.3.2 Truman was unhappy about demands and adopted a 'get tough' attitude.
3.4 Iron Curtain Speech
3.4.1 Impact
3.4.1.1 Gave the government ore public support to actively act against the East.
3.4.1.2 It angered Stalin, and he called it called Churchill's speech a "declaration of war".
3.4.1.3 It caused tension because it showed that Britain and the USA were 'teaming up'
3.4.1.4 Made the American population more anti-communists.
3.4.1.5 Details
3.4.1.5.1 On March 5, 1946 the esteemed Sir Winston Churchill gave the most important speech of the early Cold War era to a largely unprepared audience at Westminster College, in Fulton, Missouri at the request of President Harry S. Truman.
3.5 Berlin Blockade
3.5.1 Causes
3.5.1.1 Different Aims in Germany
3.5.1.1.1 West
3.5.1.1.1.1 Rebuild Germany to a strong Capitalist Nation through economic assistance. They gave $500 million in 1948 & 1949 with at one point they had 4% economic growth. They set up a new currency on the 23rd of May 1948.
3.5.1.1.2 East
3.5.1.1.2.1 Wanted to cripple Germany so that they can't recover
3.5.1.1.3 How Did It Cause the Blockade?
3.5.1.1.3.1 1) The West can't fulfil their aims and help Germany recover if they can't reach Berlin 2) He didn't want capitalist ideas spreading into the East as it made him and Communism look bad.
3.5.1.2 Mistrust
3.5.1.2.1 West
3.5.1.2.1.1 Britain, France and USA combined their zones to form Trizonia in 1946 to contain Stalin; Later known as West Germany in 1949
3.5.1.2.2 East
3.5.1.2.2.1 Stalin though the West was acting provocatively by Unifying their zones and forming a new currency.
3.5.1.2.3 How Did It Cause the Blockade?
3.5.1.2.3.1 Stalin felt threatened so tried to defend himself and show his authority without committing an act of war
3.5.2 Effects
3.5.2.1 Germany became a definitely divided nation with no chance of unity
3.5.2.2 NATO - North Atlantic Treaty Organisation - was formed.
3.5.2.3 'set the trend' for the Cold War.
3.5.2.4 Berlin became a 'flashpoint'.
3.5.3 Airlift
3.5.3.1 In June 1948 Stalin started blocking a network of roads, rails and canals that were the west's only way into Berlin, and by the 28th of June the only way in was by air. As not to seem weak, and so Truman's policy of containment was taken seriously, the Western powers launched an airlift that lasted 319 days - from the 27th of June 1948 to the 12th of May 1949. this airlift included the UK, USA, Canada, South Africa and Australia. The airlift moved 1.5 billion tonnes of materials and a record of 13,000 in one day, but sadly 43 airmen died.
3.6 Truman Doctrine & Marshall Aid
3.6.1 Truman believed that Communism succeeded when people faced poverty and hardship. He sent the American General George Marshall to assess the economic state of Europe. What he found was a ruined economy. The countries of Europe owed $11.5 billion to the USA. There were extreme shortages of all goods. Most countries were still rationing bread. There was such a coal shortage in the hard winter of 1947 that in Britain all electricity was turned off for a period each day. Churchill described Europe as “a rubble heap, a breeding ground of hate”.
3.6.2 Marshall suggested that about $17 billion would be needed to rebuild Europe’s prosperity. “Our policy”, he said, “is directed against hunger, poverty desperation and chaos.” In December 1947, Truman put his plan to Congress. For a short time the American Congress refused to grant this money as $17 billion was a lot of money.
3.6.3 When the Germans retreated from Greece in 1944, there were two rival groups – the Monarchists and the Communists – who wanted to rule the country. Both had been involved in resistance against the Nazis. The Communists wanted Greece to be a Soviet republic. The Monarchists wanted the return of the King of Greece. Churchill sent British troops to Greece in 1945 – as they had important trade routes there for things such as oil – supposedly to help restore order and supervise free elections. In fact, the British supported the Monarchists and the King was returned to power.
3.6.4 In 1946, the USSR protested to the United Nations that British troops were a threat to peace I Greece. The United Nations took no actions and so the communists tried to take control of Greece by force. A civil war quickly developed. The British could not afford the cost of such a war and announced on the 24th of February 1947 that they were withdrawing their troops. Truman stepped in. Paid for by the Americans, some British troops stayed in Greece They tried to prop up the King’s government. By 1950 the royalists were in control of Greece, although they were a very weak government, always in crisis.
3.6.5 American intervention in Greece marked a new era for the USA’s attitude to world politics, which became known as the Truman doctrine. Under the Truman Doctrine the USA was prepared to send money, equipment and advice to any country which was, in the American view, threatened by Communist take-over. Truman accepted that Eastern Europe was now Communist. His aim was to stop it spreading any further. This policy became known as the policy of containment. Others though containment should mean something firmer. They said that it must be made clear to the Soviet Union that expansion beyond a given limit would be met with military force.
3.6.6 Americans’ attitude changed when the Communists took over the government of Czechoslovakia. Czechoslovakia had been ruled by a coalition government, which, although it included Communists, had been trying to pursue policies independent of Moscow. The Communists came down hard in March 1948. Anti-Soviet leaders were purged. One pro-American Minister, Jan Masaryk, was found dead below his open window. The Communists said he had jumped. The Americans suspected he’d been pushed. Immediately, Congress accepted the Marshall Plan and made $17 billion available over four years. However Europe requested more, $20 billion, as 16 countries signed up. In total Europe received $13.5 billion. Stalin, on the other hand, forbade his communist countries from signing up.
4 Vietnam War
4.1 Why Could The USA Not Win
4.1.1 US Tactics
4.1.1.1 Bombing
4.1.1.1.1 More bombs were dropped on North Vietnam than in the whole of WW2. This was effective to an extent—it damaged North Vietnam’s war effort and disrupted supply routes, it enabled the US to keep attacking even when it withdrew ground troops, and helped bring the North Vietnamese to the negotiating table. It did not however defeat the VC, just slowed them down, and cost a huge amount of money.
4.1.1.2 Chemical weapons
4.1.1.2.1 The US used ‘Agent orange’ to destroy the jungle where the VC hid, and napalm to destroy jungles where the VC hid. Napalm also burned skin through to the bone and killed many civilians and soldiers
4.1.1.3 Search & Destroy
4.1.1.3.1 Bombing could not defeat a guerrilla army so the US began to launch search and destroy raids on villages using helicopters to carry soldiers to villages and destroy any VC forces they found. This did kill VC but the raids were often based on inadequate information and innocent civilians were killed. This helped turn the peasants against the US. Inexperienced soldiers often walked into traps
4.1.2 Guerrilla Tactics
4.1.2.1 Tet Offensive
4.1.2.1.1 In 1968 the Communists changed tactics and went on the offensive, with the Tet Offensive. During the Tet New Year holiday, VC attacked over 100 cities and military targets, even trying to capture the US Embassy in Saigon. Around 4500 fighters tied down a much larger US and South Vietnamese force for two days. This however was unsuccessful—the people of South Vietnam did not rise up and join the VC, and the VC lost around 10,000 experienced fighters. However, it did increase opposition to the war in the USA.
4.1.2.2 To make up for the fact that the better equipped and more numerous US soldiers could defeat the VC in open warfare, Ho Chi Minh used guerrilla tactics. The VC blended in with the peasant population, attacking US troops and then escaping back into the jungle. This meant US soldiers were constantly in fear of ambushes, and often had no idea where the VC were.
4.1.3 The VC Had The Support Of The Vietnamese Population
4.1.3.1 This was essential for guerrilla warfare as the VC guerrilla fighters needed to be able to blend in with the peasants, VC troops were ordered to be courteous and respectful to the peasants, and often helped the peasants in the fields. The VC could also be ruthless and were quite prepared to kill peasants who opposed them or co-operated with their enemies. Between 1966 and 1971 the VC killed an estimated 27,000 civilians. However, the South Vietnamese population did not rise up to support the VC in the Tet offensive. Also the VC depended on supplies brought in from the North along the Ho Chi Minh Trail, this was constantly bombed by the US and South Vietnamese but 40,000 Vietnamese helped to keep it open whatever the cost.
4.2 Why Did The USA Become Increasingly Invoved
4.2.1 1945
4.2.1.1 The Communist Viet Minh, under the leadership of Ho Chi Minh declared Vietnamese independence from French rule in 1945. The French resisted, and war broke out in 1946. Because Ho Chi Minh kept quiet about wanting Vietnam to be Communist so received quite a lot of sympathy from the USA
4.2.2 1949
4.2.2.1 Communists took over in China and began to give help to Ho Chi Minh. The USA feared a Communist takeover of South East Asia so poured $500 million a year into the French war effort.
4.2.3 1954
4.2.3.1 The war dragged on until 1954, when the French were defeated at Dien Bien Phu (which is one of the events in ‘We Didn’t Start the Fire’). At the 1954 Geneva Peace Conference the country was divided into North and South Vietnam until elections could be held to decide its future.
4.2.4 1955
4.2.4.1 The USA then prevented the elections from taking place because they feared that the Communist Ho Chi Minh would win. This was despite having criticised the USSR for not holding free elections in Eastern Europe. In 1955 the USA helped Ngo Dinh Diem to set up the Republic of South Vietnam. He was bitterly anti-Communist but corrupt, and refused to hold elections. The Viet Cong started a guerrilla war against the South Vietnamese government. They also attacked American air force and supply bases.
4.2.5 1962
4.2.5.1 In August 1964 North Vietnamese patrol boats opened fire on US ships in the Gulf of Tonkin. The USA reacted furiously, and on 8th March 1965, 3500 US marines came ashore at Da Nang. America was at war with Vietnam.In August 1964 North Vietnamese patrol boats opened fire on US ships in the Gulf of Tonkin. The USA reacted furiously, and on 8th March 1965, 3500 US marines came ashore at Da Nang. America was at war with Vietnam.
4.2.6 1963
4.2.6.1 Kennedy was assassinated in 1963. His successor, Lyndon Johnson was more willing to commit to full scale military involvement in Vietnam.
4.2.7 1964
4.2.7.1 The USA then prevented the elections from taking place because they feared that the Communist Ho Chi Minh would win. This was despite having criticised the USSR for not holding free elections in Eastern Europe. In 1955 the USA helped Ngo Dinh Diem to set up the Republic of South Vietnam. He was bitterly anti-Communist but corrupt, and refused to hold elections. The Viet Cong started a guerrilla war against the South Vietnamese government. They also attacked American air force and supply bases.
4.3 Why was there opposition from the US public to the Vietnam War?
4.3.1 My Lai Massacre
4.3.1.1 In March 1968 a unit of young American soldiers called Charlie Company started a Search & Destroy mission in the Quang Ngai region of South Vietnam. They had been told that in the My Lai area there was a Viet Cong headquarters, and 200 guerrillas. They had been told that all the villagers would have left for market because it was Saturday Most of them were under the impression that they had been ordered to kill everyone on sight. Early on the morning of the 16th of March, Charlie Company arrived in My Lai. In the net four hours, between 300 and 400 civilians were killed. They were mostly women, children and old men. Some were killed while they worked in their fields. Others were shot in their homes. No Viet Cong were found. Only three weapons were recovered.
4.3.2 The media showed crying children burned by American napalm bombs. Was this why 900,000 young Americans had been drafted? Instead of Vietnam being a symbol of a US crusade against Communism, it had become a symbol of defeat and confusion. There were anti-war protests all over the country. Students taunted American President Lyndon B Johnson with the chant “Hey, Hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today?” Thousands began to draft dodge – refusing to serve in Vietnam when they were called up – even world champion boxer Muhammad Ali refused publicly. There were hundreds of demonstrations in universities across the USA. The most infamous, at Kent State University in Ohio, the National Guard broke up the demonstration, killing four students. The public was horrified. War seemed to be making the war unstable.
4.3.3 For a war on such a scale the USA had to have the support of the American public, but it was increasingly difficult to keep it. Public opinion in the USA was turning against the war even before the Tet Offensive. After it, the war became very unpopular. Many Americans felt deeply uncomfortable with what was going on in Vietnam. The Vietnam War was a media war. Thousands of television, radio and newspaper reporters and a vast army of photographers sent back to the USA and Europe pictures of the fighting. Television showed prisoners being tortured or executed, or women and children watching with horror as their house was set on fire – as there was no media censorship at the time.
4.4 Why Did The War In Vietnam End
4.4.1 1960s
4.4.1.1 After the Tet Offensive President Johnson conclude that the war could not be won militarily. He reduced the bombing campaign against North Vietnam and instructed his officials to begin negotiating for peace with the Communists. In March 1968 a peace conference began in Paris.
4.4.1.2 Johnson also announced he would not be seeking re-election as President. It was an admission of failure. In the election campaign both Republican and Democrat candidates campaigned to end US involvement in Vietnam. The anti-Vietnam feeling was so strong that if they had supported continuing the war they would have no chance of election. It was no longer a question of "could the USA win the war?" - now it was "how can the USA get out of Vietnam without it looking like a defeat?”
4.4.1.3 In November 1968 Richard Nixon was elected President. From 1969 to 1973 he and his National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger worked tirelessly to end US involvement in Vietnam. This was not easy because the bigger question of how to contain world Communism – the one that had got the USA into Vietnam in the first place – had not gone away. They did not want to appear to simply hand Vietnam to the Communists. They used a range of strategies.
4.4.1.3.1 Peace Negotiations With North Vietnam
4.4.1.3.1.1 From early 1969, Kissinger had regular meetings with the chief Vietnamese peace negotiator Le Duc Tho.
4.4.1.3.2 “Vietnamisation” Of The war Effort
4.4.1.3.2.1 In Vietnam Nixon began the process of Vietnamisation – building up of South Vietnamese forces and withdrawing US troops. Between April 1969 and the end of 1971 almost 400,000 troops left Vietnam.
4.4.1.3.3 Bombing
4.4.1.3.3.1 Nixon increased bombing campaigns against North Vietnam to show he was not weak. He also invaded Viet Cong bases in Cambodia, causing outrage across the world, and even in the USA.
4.4.2 1970s
4.4.2.1 In 1972, the North Vietnamese launched a major offensive, but were unable to conquer South Vietnam. In Paris in January 1973, Le Duc Tho, Nixon and the South Vietnamese President Thieu signed a peace agreement. Nixon was Jubilant. He described the agreement as “peace with honour”. Others disagreed, but the door was now open for Nixon to pull out all US troops. By 29th of March 1973, the last American Forces left Vietnam.
4.4.2.1.1 Peace agreement
4.4.2.1.1.1 1) Immediate cease-fire, 2) Release of all war prisoners within 60 days, 3) Withdrawal of all US forces, 4) Full accounting of missing in action and 5) self-determination for South Vietnam.
4.4.2.2 It is not clear whether Nixon really believed he had secured a long lasting peace settlement. But within two years it was meaningless and South Vietnam had fallen to the Communists. Nixon had promised continuing financial aid and military support to Vietnam, but Congress refused to allow it. They did not want to waste American money. The evidence was that the South Vietnamese regime was corrupt and lacked the support of the majority of the population. Even more important, Nixon himself was in big political trouble with the Watergate scandal. In 1974 Nixon was forced to resign over Watergate, but the new President, Gerald Ford, also failed to get the backing of Congress over Vietnam.
4.4.2.3 Without US air power or military back-up and without the support of the majority of the population, the South Vietnamese government could not survive for long. In December 1974 the North Vietnamese launched a major military offensive against South Vietnam. The capital, Saigon, fell to Communist forces April 1975.
4.4.2.4 One of the bleakest symbols of American failure in Vietnam was the televised news images of desperate Vietnamese men, women and children trying to clamber aboard American helicopters taking off from the US embassy. All around them Communist forces swarmed through Saigon. After 30 years of constant conflict, the struggle for control of Vietnam had finally been settled and the Communists had won.
4.4.2.5 Pressure On The USSR And China
4.4.2.5.1 In 1969 the USSR and China fell out. Indeed, in late 1969, it seemed possible there would even be a war between these two powerful countries. As a result, both the USSR and China tried to improve relations with the USA.
4.4.2.5.1.1 In 1970 Nixon began Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) with the USSR to limit nuclear weapons. He asked Moscow to encourage North Vietnam to end the war.
4.4.2.5.1.2 Nixon also started to improve relations with China. In February 1972 Nixon was invited to China. As with the USSR he asked China to pressure North Vietnam to end the war.

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