Seeing what I believed to be an erroneous analysis of the Vietnam War becoming so widely accepted was too disturbing for me to give up in my attempt to present what I believed to be a more accurate alternative interpretation.
The argument below elaborates upon a number of points treated in a cursory manner in the previous chapter. I believe that the two chapters taken together undermine the widely held view, evident in the quotations below, that the conflict in Vietnam was a war of aggression rather than a revolutionary civil war.
There are still those who would attempt to fit it into the revolutionary An analysis of the american conception of vietnam mold and who blame our defeat on our failure to implement counterinsurgency doctrine.
At first glance the argument appears to be quite reasonable, buttressed by the credentials of the people making it, and it has great appeal to readers who may want to avoid interpretations implying that the United States lost the war in Vietnam because of its inability to combat a communist insurgency.
In this passage, the author describes American strategy in Vietnam. Specifically, the strategy involved taking highly trained soldiers and equipping them with weapons. The thinking was that the great resources of the American army would, over time, wear out the enemy, a much poorer nation.5/5(1). It was the Vietnam War that brought back to political discourse the concept of imperialism as the main explanatory factor for understanding the foreign policy of advanced capitalist states. Fathers, Sons, and Vietnam: Masculinity and Betrayal in the Life Narratives of Vietnam Veterans with Post Traumatic After Vietnam, American society was still a patriarchal system analysis of these men's narratives, I argue that the shift in notions of masculinity.
Also supporting such a view is the evidence, not widely recognized in the United States at the time, that local communist forces in South Vietnam were devastated during the Tet Offensive. Data gathered in the last years of the war indicated that many Vietnamese, particularly in the South, were tired of war, and even the communists noticed that enthusiasm for their cause was waning.
One should be wary, however, of any argument that fits so well with the long-standing conventional war bias of the American military or the individual desires of people who served in Vietnam or supported the American involvement to believe that the United States was not defeated there.
The war in Vietnam was not a war of aggression by the North against the South, nor was it ever a purely conventional war. In theory, the war moved through stages, from subversive activities that avoided direct confrontation with government military forces, to guerrilla war, and finally to mobile warfare in which regular forces predominated.
They moved their strategic emphasis back and forth from stage to stage as events and circumstances warranted. At times all three stages of activity existed simultaneously.
In part the problem is a function of the tendency of many Americans to see North Vietnam as a separate country bent on the conquest of its southern neighbor. Clearly people in the American anti-war movement often had difficulty distinguising between reality and communist propaganda, but they did not have a monopoly on self-deception.
Americans supporting the war also failed to distinguish between reality and their own propaganda, refusing to see that a sovereign and independent Republic of Vietnam RVN could only exist if the Saigon government and its American ally won the war.
The RVN was not a state to be defended but a state to be created. Inneither communist nor anticommunist Vietnamese accepted the idea that their nation had been partitioned.
Communist strength in the North precluded unification of Vietnam on terms acceptable to the United States and its Vietnamese allies in the South. American leaders denied the civil nature of the conflict and worked for a solution to the Vietnam conflict similar to that achieved earlier in Korea.
That outcome could only be achieved, however, if the United States succeeded in forcing the communists to abandon their goal of creating a revolutionary state in all Vietnam, a difficult task to say the least.
Significantly, the war in Vietnam was never a war of northerners against southerners. Except for a few readjustments after the death of Ho init changed little from the s to the mids. Ina majority of the nine member Secretariat of the Vietnamese Workers Party VWP came from the South, as did half of the members whose place of birth can be determined 20 of 38 elected to the Council of Ministers following the communist triumph.
Although the seat of the communist government that conquered the South resided in North Vietnam, its leadership was national, not regional.
The names of some of the individuals from south of the 17th parallel who held high positions in the communist leadership during the war are well known. Countless southerners also served in the ranks, not only as political cadres and guerrillas, but also as regulars.
No knowledgeable author disputes the fact that southerners provided the vast majority of the combatants in the Viet Cong units that carried the major burden of the war beforejust as widespread agreement exists that the communist leadership in Hanoi initiated and directed the war in the South from its inception.
The regular forces that moved down the Ho Chi Minh trail to participate in the large unit war against the Americans contained soldiers returning to the South as well as combatants from the North.
As historian Warren I.
Separateness was something to be won on the battlefield by the secessionists, not proclaimed by others or imposed from outside. Latimer highlighted that flexibility in his survey of the ongoing debate within the leadership of the Vietnamese Workers Party over the proper strategy in the struggle for unification.
From tothe communists undertook political organization and mobilization in the South while building socialism in the base area of the North and awaiting the collapse of the Ngo Dinh Diem government in Saigon.
When that collapse did not take place, the communists adopted a more forceful approach, beginning with guerrilla warfare in and attempting to shift to mobile warfare in That move was thwarted by the United States, as was an attempt to gain a decisive victory early in Failure is a hard word, and no matter how you analyze the Vietnam War, that is exactly what it was.
The War was a personal failure on a national scale.
From its covert beginnings, through the bloodiest, darkest days and finally to the bitter end, this ten-year period of American history is a. – South Vietnam was on the ropes under a Revolutionary Guerrilla War approach combining strong organization building, terrorism and guerrilla strikes.
– The introduction of American airpower and troops presented a massive challenge that directors of the communist effort attempted to meet with a Regular Force Strategy. This includes the brutal border battles of , and the Tet .
The Tragedy of the American Military. The American public and its political leadership will do anything for the military except take it seriously. There is still indignation in her voice when she gets on the subject of the building of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. She hates Washington, and has rarely been back since her work was finished. Excerpted from American Studies Vietnam, Vietnam Veterans Memorial Posted in Military History. Sociology Quizzes Chapters STUDY. PLAY. 1. According to the sociological perspective, people's behavior: • Sociology attempts to connect individual experiences to a conception of a larger social structure. • A town with a large population of immigrants from Vietnam opens a Vietnamese-American .
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From start to finish, the Vietnam War was a people’s war, and the communists won because they had, as one American general who served in Vietnam observed, “a coherent, long-term, and brilliant grand strategy–the strategy of revolutionary war.”.
The Insidious Ideology of Ken Burns’s The Vietnam War Burns and co-director Lynn Novick take a "many sides" approach to history at a time when "many sides" is a tool of obfuscation.
By Alex Shephard. Fathers, Sons, and Vietnam: Masculinity and Betrayal in the Life Narratives of Vietnam Veterans with Post Traumatic After Vietnam, American society was still a patriarchal system analysis of these men's narratives, I argue that the shift in notions of masculinity.