Richard Nixon & the Vietnam War

Sean Evans

Richard Nixon

Richard Nixon was the 37th President of the United States. Before coming President he was the 36th Vice President of the United States. He served as president from 1969-1974, when he would resign from office, becoming the only president to ever resign. He graduated form Duke University Law School in 1937. He later on served in the U.S. Navy reserve during World War II. And in 1950, he was elected into Senate. Nixon is credited with ending American involvement in the Vietnam War and bringing the Americans home. He is also credited with many other things. Nixon ended the military draft, opened diplomatic relations with China, initiated the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty with the USSR, enforced desegregation in Southern schools, established the Environmental Protection Agency, and presided over the Apollo 11 moon landing.

5 facts on Nixon & the Vietnam War

1. Nixon thought that he could intimidate North Vietnam though the "Madman Theory". This was introduced by Nixon, which basically was that his administration would attempt to make leaders of other countries think that Nixon was mad, and his behavior was irrational and volatile. According to this theory, leaders of the Communist nations would avoid provoking the United States.

2. Nixon approved of a secret bombing of North Vietnam and Cambodia. This secret mission was code named as "Operation Menu". This resulted in a large and heavy bombing of Cambodia. It was actually stated that more bombs were dropped on Cambodia by Johnson and Nixon than bombs allies dropped during World War II.

3. In July of 2969, Richard Nixon visited South Vietnam where he met his military commanders and Nguyen Van Thieu, the president of South Vietnam at the time. He then implemented a strategy of replacing American troops with Vietnamese troops. This strategy was called Vietnamization. U.S. troops were being withdrawn and returned home in phases. Nixon authorized incursions into Laos to interrupt the Ho Chi Minh Trail, which was used to supply forces in North Vietnam. Nixon later announced in 1970 the ground invasion in Cambodia.

4. U.S. troops continued to be withdrawn and conscription was reduced. In 1973, Richard Nixon ended the military draft, which forced people from the United States to fight and participate in wars. Nixon made it all-volunteer.

5. Nixon signed the Paris Peace Accords on January 27th, 1973. This was intended to establish peace in Vietnam and the Vietnam War itself. It stopped the fighting of North and South Vietnam, temporarily. This ended U.S. involvement in the war, and allowed for the withdraw of all remaining troops in Vietnam. North Vietnam later took over South Vietnam in 1975.

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Connections

1. Laos and Cambodia- in March of 1969, Nixon ordered a secret bombing campaign of Laos and Cambodia. Nixon also tried to take over the Ho Chi Minh trail which supplied North Vietnam during the war, and this trail ran through Laos and Cambodia.

2. Kent State- After Richard Nixon announced on television the invasion of Cambodia by the United States, riots broke out on the campus of Kent State. the students set fire to the ROTC building. This forced the governor of Ohio to dispatch 900 guardsmen to the campus. At an altercation of May 4th, 28 of the guardsmen were forced to shoot at a group of students killing 4 and wounding 9.

3. Jackson State- Riots broke out on the Jackson state campus after the announcement of the invasion of Cambodia, just like Kent state. Students were setting fires, overturning trucks, etc. Shootings occurred during the riots, and a couple of deaths had occurred.

4. Ho Chi Minh- Nixon had written Ho Chi Minh a letter talking about the war, and was read in Paris. Ho accused the U.S. of a war of aggression, and demanded them to cease the aggression. Nixon later on removed all troops from Vietnam, ending U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War.