New User Special Price Expires in

Let's log you in.

Sign in with Facebook


Don't have a StudySoup account? Create one here!


Create a StudySoup account

Be part of our community, it's free to join!

Sign up with Facebook


Create your account
By creating an account you agree to StudySoup's terms and conditions and privacy policy

Already have a StudySoup account? Login here

US & Vietnam - Major Problems in the History of the Vietnam War

by: Hannah Bryant

US & Vietnam - Major Problems in the History of the Vietnam War Hst 488

Marketplace > Oregon State University > History > Hst 488 > US Vietnam Major Problems in the History of the Vietnam War
Hannah Bryant

Preview These Notes for FREE

Get a free preview of these Notes, just enter your email below.

Unlock Preview
Unlock Preview

Preview these materials now for free

Why put in your email? Get access to more of this material and other relevant free materials for your school

View Preview

About this Document

Chapters notes over chapter 3 and 4 documents
The US and Vietnam 1945-1995
Paul A. Wanke
Study Guide
vietnam war
50 ?




Popular in The US and Vietnam 1945-1995

Popular in History

This 5 page Study Guide was uploaded by Hannah Bryant on Sunday September 25, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to Hst 488 at Oregon State University taught by Paul A. Wanke in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 12 views. For similar materials see The US and Vietnam 1945-1995 in History at Oregon State University.


Reviews for US & Vietnam - Major Problems in the History of the Vietnam War


Report this Material


What is Karma?


Karma is the currency of StudySoup.

You can buy or earn more Karma at anytime and redeem it for class notes, study guides, flashcards, and more!

Date Created: 09/25/16
HST 488: The US & Vietnam 1945 – 1995, Professor Wanke, Oregon State University Major Problems in the History of the Vietnam War, chapter notes 3-4 Chapter 3: The Roots of the American Commitment • During WWII, FDR advanced proposals intended to help colonized people prepare for self-governance, particularly those in Indochina under French rule. Shortly before his death, he began to lighten his stance due to America’s need to work with its allies, including the French, on postwar diplomatic initiatives • Harry S. Truman was reluctant to support either side of the colonization issue, and the US remained officially neutral until 1950, when they provided France with military and economic help – this is typically considered the official start of the American commitment in Vietnam • There is disagreement about why the US got involved “George C. Marshall Expresses Concern About Indochina Dispute, 1947” • Setbacks to French interests would also be setbacks to American interests • Relaxing European control over colonized Asian countries would “plunge [them] into violent discord, or already apparent anti-Western Pan-Asiatic tendencies could become dominant political force, or Communists could capture control” (48). • Vietnam needs France to make its will happen, but this must be voluntary or it will crash and burn. Don’t let Vietnamese compare their situation unfavorably to their neighbors • France should understand that the US is greatly concerned with the situation but is not ready to intervene directly yet • Western democracy is on the defensive in Asia because they associate it with the denial of their rights. Many leaders encourage anti-Western sentiments. The US hopes France will be swift to find a solution “Statement of U.S. Policy Toward Indochina, 1948” • Objectives o Assist in finding a solution that France and Vietnam can both agree on o Eliminate Communist influence and see Vietnam establish government that is friendly to the US and is patterned upon Western democracy o Help people of Indochina understand the Western powers so they will cooperate culturally, economically, and politically o Raise the standard of living so Indochinese people will be less receptive to totalitarian influences and will want to work and create a better economy o Prevent Chinese from influencing Indochina so that the people will be able to develop naturally • Policy Issues o France needs to accommodate what Vietnam wants: unity of Cochinchina, Annam, and Tonkin; complete internal autonomy; the right to choose freely whether to participate in the French Union o US recognizes French sovereignty but does not have a commitment to help them exert authority o Ho Chi Minh is encouraging people to resist French rule and his Communist group influences nearly all armed forces who are fighting the French o Agreements negotiated between Ho Chi Minh and French were not successfully implemented, and the Vietnamese people do not trust the French anymore • Political o Hostilities in the colonial area are detrimental to the long-term interests of the US and France both o Anti-Western sentiments in Asia are helpful to the USSR while hurting the US o French should not negotiate with Ho Chi Minh since he is a Communist, even though he is supported by a majority of the Vietnamese people o Postwar France either doesn’t understand or underestimates the strength of Communist influence o Declined to permit exportation of arms and munitions to the French present in Indochina • Policy Evaluation o Objectives have not been realized o Communist control has increased o US influence in the region has suffered o We do not have a practical solution to offer o We have immediate interest in maintaining a friendly French government in power o Need to find a compromise “The United States Praises the Elysee Agreements, 1949” • Vietnam’s formation and the announcement that the constitution will be decided by the people is good • It will help reestablish peace in the region • The US hopes this will form the basis for the Vietnamese people to see their aspirations realized “The State Department Recommends Military Aid to the French, 1950” • The Problem o Should the US provide military aid? How much and in what way if so? • Assumption o No effective split between USSR and China in next 3 years o USSR will not declare war on any Southeast Asian country in the next 3 years o Same with China o USSR will try to bring down Southeast Asian governments that disagree with Communism • Facts Bearing on the Problem o Mutual Defense Assistance Act of 1949 did not specify any countries except the Philippines o Attitude of Congress toward the topic has stiffened o Congress is dissatisfied with current policies o MDA gives $75 million to use in the area to advance UN’s interested o Funds are unrestricted in use o No regional military pact exists now o Communism making large advances o Opposition to Communism only being carried on by Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos o China and the USSR helping Communist forces in Indochina • Conclusions o Significant changes in the region since the MDA o All of Southeast Asia could fall under Communist domination o Countries are not capable of defending themselves right now o French are engaged in military operations to stop Communism o France needs help to do this • Recommendations o US should give military aid o Should be financed out of funds given in MDA “The National Security Council Identifies Important U.S. Security Interests in Indochina, 1950” • Problem o Undertake determination of what US should do to protect its security in Indochina and prevent spread of Communism • Analysis o Communists want all of Southeast Asia o Large segment of Indochinese national movement is under Ho Chi Minh’s control o US has told France they need to establish government in Vietnam to stop Communism from spreading o French government entered into agreements with Laos and Cambodia o US continue to bring attention to dangers of Communism o Newly-created countries do not have resources to protect themselves o Chinese Communist troops are present around the border of Indochina o They need help to hold off Communist forces • Conclusions o US needs to protect its interests through any measures possible o Neighboring countries could also fall to Communism if nothing is done o Need to prepare a program to help them as a matter of priority “Dean Acheson Urges Aid for Indochina, 1950” • Situation is urgent • The outcome of the situation could greatly affect Western interests negatively • US government needs to give aid economically and militarily “Ho Chi Minh Denounces U.S. Intervention, 1950” • US is openly interfering • Prevents the development of local handicrafts, contaminates the culture, overall bad • Need to defeat the colonists in order to gain independence Chapter 4: Dwight D. Eisenhower, Ngo Dinh Diem, and the Deepening U.S. Commitment • Eisenhower gained presidency; no resolution was in sight • American stake had grown while French had deteriorated • French were essentially defeated after US refused to intervene on May 7, 1954 • US gave aid to Ngo Dinh Diem regime “Dwight D. Eisenhower Appeals for British Help, 1954” • Written to Winston Churchill • French can’t see it through alone, and if they don’t win, Communists do • There is no negotiated outcome that will truly accomplish anything good; must be a physical pushback against Communism • US needs British help to make it work, and this is in everyone’s best interest “Eisenhower Explains the Domino Theory, 1954” • Essentially, if Communism is allowed to take hold, the countries nearby would all fall like dominoes as a result • Consequences of this are incalculable to the free world “Vo Nguyen Giap Assesses Dienbienphu’s Importance (1954), 1964” • Dien Bien Phu victory is an inspiration to all progressive people • A huge victory for those fighting against imperialism • Peace could not have been reestablished without this victory “The Geneva Conference Signatories Issue Their Final Declaration, 1954” • Ending hostilities in Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam is satisfactory • No foreign military base can be established in these places now • Vietnamese people can enjoy fundamental freedoms • Every member of the Geneva Conference should recognize these places as sovereign and independent “South Vietnam Renounces Negotiations with North Vietnam, 1955” • Government does not consider itself bound by Geneva documents that it did not sign • It is just propaganda to make people complacent rather than truth • Policy of government remains the same as before, and partition of the country is not what the people want • The citizens must enjoy democratic freedoms and fundamental human rights “Elbridge Durbrow Assessed the Diem Regime, 1957” • Problems that have arisen might lead to a deteriorating situation in Vietnam soon • Diem is the only man of stature to guide the country so far • However, he has not made decisions that need to be made in order to serve Vietnam’s future independence and strength • He is suspicious and authoritarian • Does not grant Ministers real authority • If he continues this path, the majority of the country may fall victim to dangerous beliefs • We must pressure him to make these decisions he holds out on “Ngo Dinh Diem Pledges to Continue Fighting Communism, 1957” • The world now condemns imperialism • Need a new system to stop Communism from becoming the new go-to system • Vietnam is most sensitive area • US can be assured that Vietnam intends to fight Communism and is grateful to the US for help


Buy Material

Are you sure you want to buy this material for

50 Karma

Buy Material

BOOM! Enjoy Your Free Notes!

We've added these Notes to your profile, click here to view them now.


You're already Subscribed!

Looks like you've already subscribed to StudySoup, you won't need to purchase another subscription to get this material. To access this material simply click 'View Full Document'

Why people love StudySoup

Bentley McCaw University of Florida

"I was shooting for a perfect 4.0 GPA this semester. Having StudySoup as a study aid was critical to helping me achieve my goal...and I nailed it!"

Janice Dongeun University of Washington

"I used the money I made selling my notes & study guides to pay for spring break in Olympia, Washington...which was Sweet!"

Bentley McCaw University of Florida

"I was shooting for a perfect 4.0 GPA this semester. Having StudySoup as a study aid was critical to helping me achieve my goal...and I nailed it!"


"Their 'Elite Notetakers' are making over $1,200/month in sales by creating high quality content that helps their classmates in a time of need."

Become an Elite Notetaker and start selling your notes online!

Refund Policy


All subscriptions to StudySoup are paid in full at the time of subscribing. To change your credit card information or to cancel your subscription, go to "Edit Settings". All credit card information will be available there. If you should decide to cancel your subscription, it will continue to be valid until the next payment period, as all payments for the current period were made in advance. For special circumstances, please email


StudySoup has more than 1 million course-specific study resources to help students study smarter. If you’re having trouble finding what you’re looking for, our customer support team can help you find what you need! Feel free to contact them here:

Recurring Subscriptions: If you have canceled your recurring subscription on the day of renewal and have not downloaded any documents, you may request a refund by submitting an email to

Satisfaction Guarantee: If you’re not satisfied with your subscription, you can contact us for further help. Contact must be made within 3 business days of your subscription purchase and your refund request will be subject for review.

Please Note: Refunds can never be provided more than 30 days after the initial purchase date regardless of your activity on the site.