Eisenhower was the first president to go head first into the Vietnam conflicts. Eisenhower did not support the Geneva Accords signed by France and Vietnam in the summer of 1954. The Accord made the 17th parallel dividing the country of Vietnam to north and south section until two years when they would hold a free election for all of the country. Eisenhower and his secretary of state John Foster Dulles believed that the agreement gave the communist too much power in the north. Instead Eisenhower decided to create the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO). This treaty’s purpose was to stop any more communist influence in Southeast Asia. Using the SEATO as a cover, Eisenhower started to help build a new nation in South Vietnam. In 1955 GVN was born, the government of the republic of Vietnam, the image 1leader being Ngo Dinh Diem, after a landslide election.
Soon after Diem claimed his country was under attack from communist. In 1957 the Vietnam War began. Diem imprisoned all those he viewed as being suspected communist and his people became outraged, administering protest and demonstrations.
From 1956-1960, North Vietnam did all it could to put political pressure on Diem’s regime, gathering followers in the south to overthrow him. Since the false imprisonments it was not hard to rally rural areas in the south. This was how the National Liberation Front (NFL) was created.
By 1961 Kennedy was now in office and he had a new team to investigate the conditions in South Vietnam. This investigation was known as the “December 1961 White Papers”. The content in the white paper was basically a cry for more aid to Vietnam. Kennedy decided to send more advisors and machinery but would not send troops. In 1963 Kennedy put his support into a Portrait of Lyndon B. Johnsoncoup. Diem and his brother were killed. Three weeks later Kennedy was assassinated.
Lyndon B. Johnson 1963-1969...
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