Presidencies Of John F. Kennedy And Lyndon B. Johnson

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In the presidencies of John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson times were extremely confusing. Domestically, the civil rights movement was in full effect and the war in Vietnam was raging overseas. Another major implication on these two mens presidencies was the Cold War and the fight for democracy to rule over communism around the world. Thus, many of the stances these two presidents had on Vietnam involved being aggressive in the war and not letting communism defeat the “free” world. Their decisions were both aggressive and extremely stubborn when the scope of the war began to take shape. Both of these men fit the description of James Thompson extremely well because of these decisions and the escalation of the war that followed. John F. Kennedy …show more content…

Johnson would step in to fill the void in the presidency. Ironically, this was mere after Kennedy approved the coup of South Vietnamese president Ngo Dinh Diem that saw his death. The coup took place because of the clear lack of support for his government, again a step to defend the small nation from falling to communist ideology. Johnson took the presidency and was tasked with escalating the war, avoid involvement and surrender the country to communism. Johnson would choose the former until he was replaced by Richard Nixon in 1969. With already increasing financial support for the war to new South Vietnamese leader Gernal Khanh, the Gulf of Tonkin incident happened. An event that wasn’t even proven to exist, in August of 1964, the USS Maddox was attacked by Northern torpedo boats. Johnson was able to pass legislation that gave him a blank check to deal with a direct attack against United States military forces as a response,which lead to direct involvement in the war (Herring, ). In early 1965 the first ground forces that were not advisors were placed in Vietnam in the form of three thousand five hundred marines. On February, 1965 Operation Rolling Thunder was put into effect. With this operation in effect, the war was expected to end quickly. Operation Rolling Thunder would last for approximately three years. After these actions, escalation eventually ascended into a full scale war. In the year 1964, there were only 23300 troops stationed in Vietnam, most of them being advisors. By the time Johnson would leave office, 536,100 troops would be involved in

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