Edwards, Richard. The Vietnam War. Rourke Enterprises, Vero Beach Fl 1986 Late on Augusr 4, 1964 the United States began its first bombing raid against North Vietnam, adding a new dimension to the slowly escalating conflict between the south Vietnamese goverment and the Vietcong. Its was from this point that the possibilites of direct American involvement were to increase radically. In the eight and a half year to the signing of the Paris Peace Accord in 1973, this resulted in the dropping of a greater tonnage of bombs on Vietnam than the Allies had dropped during World War II.
On March 8, 1965, the first American marines splashed ashore at Da Namg, after there was no hope of the South Vietnamese Army defeating the Vietcong on thier own.
By the end of the year there were 200,000 American troops in Vietnam, a figure which at its height in 1967 was to reach 540,000.
It's eventual economic cost incalcuaculable, the human losses were immense. Exact figures are unavailable. It is estimated that between 1965 and 1973, the United States spent 120 billion dollars in Vietnam. The loss of life among North Vietnamese as a result of American Bombing is put at 1.5 million. About 924,000 Vietcong and North Vietnamese were killed in the South. However, this figure is unreliable, as many ordinary villagers were classified as Vietcong to improve the body-count, which was supposed to show Americans at home that the war was being won.
South Vietnamese losses are put at 183,000, while 58,000 American troops dies fighting in a country no bigger than the state of Florida.
One of the biggest questions stems from why and how, despite these huge losses, it was the Vietcong and North Vietnamese who were eventually victorious. The United States, the leading military power in the world, took on an initally poorly equipped guerrilla army and lost. For the United States greater firepower proved insufficient. The United Sates never really accepted this and it was that failure, combined with lack of understanding of the nature of the Vietnamese people as a whole, thats what resulted in a phantom encounter involving two American destroyers developing into what was to become an increasingly tragic war as it went on.
After a gruwling war, the cease fire agreement between the United Sates and North Vietnam was finally initaled in Pris on January 23, 1973 by Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho, and formally signed on January 27. However, the South Vietamese goverment under President Thieu, was implacably opposed to this agreement. When, in October1972, the draft proposals had been presented to Thieu, he had put foward sixty-nine amendments. These had been objected toby the North. I like this book alot it had loads of usefull information. Alot of what i read was new to me i found that the stistic were socking in a sense. The one thing i didnt like that the auther Ricard Edwards was alittle bies towards the United States, the reader can tell the Edwards was fully against the war.