What was President Nixon’s involvement in ending the war?
By: Hailey Hazlett
When Richard Nixon became president in 1969, the whole vietnam war fell on his plate and it was up to him to decide how he was going to handle this issue. When he took office the U.S had been sending troops to Vietnam since 1965, in those 4 years 31,000 american lives had been lost due to the war. Previously before him, President JFK had plans to take troops out gradually and attempt to strengthen the South Vietnamese army so they could fight the war themselves. But when President Johnson took over, he wanted to keep the troops there.
Nixon created a strategy known as ‘Vietnamization” which included a lot of the same plans as JFK had for the war. Richard Nixon believed his Vietnamization strategy, which involved building up south vietnam’s military strength would prepare them to take their own responsibility for the fight against North Vietnam and allow the US to leave the conflict with our world honor still in tact.
However, Nixon differed from Kennedy's plans in one
extremely significant way. In order to end the war, Nixon had to intensify the conflict. He announced his plan to the nation on November 3, 1969. he stated “
The defense of freedom is everybody’s business, not just America’s business. And it is particularly the responsibility of the people whose freedom is threatened,” Nixon explained. “In the previous administration, we Americanized the war in Vietnam. In this administration, we are Vietnamizing the search for peace.”
At home, Nixon was facing extreme pressure from the anti-war public that made up the majority of the country. He had originally campaigned to be the man who was going to end the war and bring peace with honor, and supposedly had a “secret plan” to end it. He wanted to make the public happy, but he couldn't just abandon South Vietnam.
So when the
Vietnamization plan was put in place, he also escalated U.S. military activity in other parts of...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document