An American War

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American involvement in Vietnam was largely in response to Cold War polices and Strategies. Kennedy took a much more laid back approach to Vietnam than Eisenhower did. He only wanted to support the South and not give them direct military aid by getting involved. Kennedy believed that the nations themselves should bear the burden of fighting the war and America would merely give them supplies and political support. However, the administration’s attempt to help the South largely failed because neither the South Vietnamese nor the Americans knew how to deal with guerrilla warfare. Another issue was that Diem’s support quickly declining to the point where it was just about his own family. He never trusted any popular government official in…show more content…
The fighting lasted for two days and nights, with both sides reporting heavy casualties. Ultimately in the end the US won and Robert McNamara now had his strategy to win the war, numbers (We Were Soldiers, film). McNamara’s strategy for the War was to have as many inflict as many causality on the North Vietnamese, which he thought would in the end lead to Ho Chi Minh surrendering because the North Vietnamese would no longer be able to fight. The body count system was the only way he knew to measure success since the ultimate US goal was to keep communist influence out of South Vietnam, and there was no clear way to measure that. With the victory of the Ia Drang Valley McNamara and President Johnson decided to increase the number of troops in Vietnam and by the end of 1965 US troops exceed 200,000 (Fog of War). The US tactics for the war, such as its manpower policy had a great impact on the American soldiers. One of the manpower policy tactics was to rotate soldiers out after a twelve month tour of duty, which made it hard to establish unit cohesion. Another issue with the manpower policy established by the US was that the war was fought by young soldiers, with the average age be twenty. With such a young age many soldiers had limited
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