Because come the end the americans were fighting their own kids?
I never said they did. It's clear from their reluctance to support it that they didn't want the US-sponsored one they were given when the French pulled out.Moot. It's unclear if the Southern Vietnamese people actually wanted the Northern administration.
But the alternative was what? Bear in mind the mentality of the timeI never said they did. It's clear from their reluctance to support it that they didn't want the US-sponsored one they were given when the French pulled out.
It's as if the US hadn't learned anything from Korea.
A government chosen by the Vietnamese, what with democracy and all.But the alternative was what?
The mentality at the time (and not just in SEA) was, "who cares if they're a bastard so long as they're our bastard."Bear in mind the mentality of the time
Well I guess now we'll never know if it would have gone the way you suggest it might have. I agree though that having to deal with the Government in the South would have been a nightmare.Given the US's war aims, I doubt that would have resulted in them winning. A good 'mission accomplished' moment at best.
They'd still have had to deal with the Republic of Vietnam's government being wholly incapable of running their country effectively or even extending their writ beyond the barrel of an American gun.
You do see what I did there in anticipation of your answer. I seem to recall that the concept of a democratic choice would never have been tolerated in those days. It simply wasn’t an option other than the status quo. We can’t rewrite history.A government chosen by the Vietnamese, what with democracy and all.
The mentality at the time (and not just in SEA) was, "who cares if they're a bastard so long as they're our bastard."
Didn't work out well at all, did it?
Yes, I did but the question was "the alternative was what?", not "what permissible alternative was there?"You do see what I did there in anticipation of your answer.
Well we all know that FP is carried out with pegs on noses, but one has to ask oneself if that was a bad decision at the time. The point was it was to prevent further incursions of Communism and whichever way you slice it that is still the US’s policy in relation China and North Korea.Yes, I did but the question was "the alternative was what?", not "what permissible alternative was there?"
Standing up behind their justification for being in Vietnam in the first place was an option: they chose supporting the unpopular, incompetent and corrupt anti-Communist instead.
as noted before, the Americans were fighting nationalists.Well we all know that FP is carried out with pegs on noses, but one has to ask oneself if that was a bad decision at the time. The point was it was to prevent further incursions of Communism and whichever way you slice it that is still the US’s policy in relation China and North Korea.
Probably one reason the French took such a hard line in Algeria shortly afterwards.I think Ho Chi Minh told the French - in 1945/6 - that the VM would accept a sort of 'protected' status for Indochina. Internal affairs would be left to the local population, with France maintaining military bases, overseeing Indochina's foreign affairs, etc. France couldn't see the writing on the wall and I wonder whether the French felt it necessary to demonstrate that the defeats of WW2 were of the past? It was a huge missed opportunity and of course very costly in terms of lost lives.
LBJ is a case of classic stolen valorA certain USN officer resigned his commission to run for fir congress
Having secured Texas he had the honour to succeed a fellow pacific officer in the big chair only to be replace by another Pacific officer who swore a lot
The US didn't want formal British military support. What they wanted and got was covert political support to prevent interference by the Soviet Union through the Geneva Agree,emt. Britain was chair of the Geneva Agreement and both the UK and the USA were completely aware that the numbers of troops being committed to Vietnam broke the international agreement for such things. Britain's primary role, supported also by the South Vietnamese, was to ensure that Russia did not get the 'chair' to move towards an investigation. The following is extracted from a paper on released files from the UK National Archives:They weren't, POTUS asked Harold Wilson for British troops, he declined POTUS replied" Don't expect any help from us in the future"............
‘However, this recommendation might be possible to implement if the personnel are detached and given temporary civilian status, or are attached to the American Special Forces in such a manner that their British military identity is lost in the US Unit. However the Americans are crying out for expert assistance in this field and are extremely enthusiastic that [one inch of text censored] should join them. He really is an expert, full of enthusiasm, drive and initiative in dealing with these primitive peoples and I hope that he will be given full support and assistance in this task’.Other covert aid provided by Britain included secret British air flights from Hong Kong to deliver arms, especially napalm and five-hundred-pound bombs.
Apparently over 2 Million fled in boats and overland because the North was NOT the government they wanted. tens of thousand of others were sent to reeducation campsFor my money, the war being lost in Washington was down to Washington having opted to fight for the Vietnamese government they wanted instead of the Vietnamese government the Vietnamese wanted.
The Soviets and PRC were arguably doing the same, the main differences being they were not committed in any scale and that their choice of government was headed by people who had reputations as Vietnamese patriots from the anti-colonial wars.
Soviet leadership tried (though without any success) an interesting tactics. There is a lot of Tadjiks and Uzbeks in Afghanistan and millions of them lived in the Soviet union. There were the whole military units in the Soviet armed forces formed strictly on an ethnical ground. The idea was simple - The Afghans (especially in Northern Afghanistan would regard the Soviet army not as just foreign invaders but as their 'brothers'. But these efforts appeared to be fruitless.An interesting comparison in Rodric Braithwaite's Afghantsy on the Soviet Afghan war was the demographics of the conscript troops were very similar to the US's in Vietnam. In both cases, large numbers of connected kids avoided the draft through family influence while the urban middle classes had various schemes of their own.
The bulk of the troops who went were urban working class and - disproportionately high in both settings - rural kids from Nowhereville and Nigdegrad.
There is a big difference between nationalists that are ready to fight and die and ones that are ready to surrender.Like in 1941-45
Even Vichy French Nationalists
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