gulf of tonkin incident

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August 2nd 1964: Gulf of Tonkin incident

On this day in 1964, North Vietnamese gunboats allegedly fired on American destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin. The incident was used by the administration of President Lyndon B. Johnson to demonstrate the aggression of the North Vietnamese communists, and to justify an escalated US military presence in the country. In the wake of the incident, Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin Joint Resolution which authorised the President to intervene in Vietnam to counter “communist aggression”. Thus, Johnson was authorised - in what was essentially a blank cheque from Congress - to send troops into Vietnam to fight the communist North and aid the South; there was no formal declaration of war by Congress. It was later confirmed that the USS Maddox in fact fired first on the North Vietnamese, and that the incident was twisted for the purposes of the Johnson administration.

Conspiracy Theories

by  Saṃsāran

The internet is rife with conspiracy theories. Stories about Flat Earth, fake moon landings, Illuminati, the Trilateral Commission, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, 9/11, the Freemasons, Area 51, the assassination of President Kennedy, Roswell and others. All of these subjects make for interesting study and many genuine questions are raised.

People have plenty of reasons to suspect conspiracies involving business and government. The United States government DID secretly infect African American men with syphilis, it DID administer LSD secretly to American citizens, it DID fabricate the Gulf of Tonkin incident and lie about it to get public support for what became the Vietnam War, it DID engage in a cover-up with respect to the Kennedy assassination by down playing Oswald’s connection to the Soviet Union out of fear that the public would demand armed retaliation, it DID engage in an entire campaign of falsehood during the Vietnam war, it did harass and intimidate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. illegally bugging his hotel room, blackmailing him and even trying to convince him to commit suicide, it DID during J. Edgar Hoover’s tenure at the FBI routinely blackmail political figures, celebrities and others, it DID engage in the covert other throw of democratically elected regimes to ensure profits for American business interests and lie about it to the American people. Big oil DID kill the electric car and the mass transit industry in the U.S.

The list goes on and on. However, all of the conspiracies outlined above have been proven with facts. Many of the facts coming from whistle blowers within the organizations. You see, people cannot keep secrets especially if there is a buck to be made by spilling the beans.  Conspiracy theories which rely upon the assumption of a vast network of conspirators and which none have ever come forward just fly in the face of human nature and common sense.


Why in the world would the Illuminati or the Freemasons plant “secret messages” in things like the currency or the National seal? If you want to have a secret society wouldn’t it be best, you know, to keep it secret? When it comes to conspiracy theories what I need is good hard facts.  Not allegations. Not speculation. Not hearsay. Facts with supporting back up documentation. Facts which stand up to Occam’s razor. Motives which are believable. In a word, give me real evidence and I will consider any theory. Give me unsubstantiated allegations and I will dismiss them. Call me a “sheep” or tell me that I am being “duped by the establishment” for so doing and I will dismiss you.

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January 3rd 1901: Ngô Ðình Diệm born

On this day in 1901, the future South Vietnamese President Ngô Ðình Diệm was born in Quang Binh. Born to a staunchly Catholic noble family, his eminent ancestry secured him a spot in the imperial ministry. However, he left politics due to frustrations with French colonial rule, and went into self-imposed exile for many years, during which time he travelled to the United States. Diệm returned in 1954 to lead the government of the newly independent Vietnam, and, after defeating the emperor in a referendum in which his supporters intimidated voters, made himself the sole president of South Vietnam. He quickly established an autocratic rule, flouting requirements for free elections in 1956 and imprisoning dissenters. Diệm was fiercely opposed to the communist control of North Vietnam, and therefore received military and economic support from the United States, who feared the fall of Vietnam to communism would lead to a ‘domino effect’ in the region. The Catholic Diệm pursued an aggressive policy towards the Buddhist majority in South Vietnam, which led to a high level of protests in Vietnam and defections to communism. These protests included self-immolation by Buddhist monks, captured by Malcom Browne in one of the most iconic images of the twentieth century - the self-immolation of Thich Quang Duc. The United States withdrew their support for South Vietnam amid the protests, and, in November 1963, Diệm was assassinated in a military coup. In 1964, after the Tonkin Gulf Incident, the United States became fully engaged in the war effort against Ho Chi Minh’s communist forces, thus beginning America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. Diệm was a major force in Vietnamese politics during the troubled years after independence, and his brutal suppression of his own people exacerbated the tensions which erupted in one of the major wars of the twentieth century.

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January 27th 1973: Paris Peace Accords

On this day in 1973, the Paris Peace Accords were signed in the French capital, ending U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. American involvement in the country went back to the 1950s, with Cold War fears of the region falling to communism leading a series of presidents to steadily increase the presence of American advisers in Vietnam. Vietnam successfully achieved independence from the colonial French in 1954, which also resulted in the division of the country between the communist North under Ho Chi Minh, and the South under U.S.-backed Ngo Dinh Diem. The two sections soon broke out in fighting, and in August 1964 the United States fully committed to the war after the Gulf of Tonkin incident. This was when the North Vietnamese allegedly fired on American ships in the gulf, which resulted in Congress passing a resolution allowing the President to intervene in the war to counter the communists. The high casualty rates of American soldiers, and tales of horrific acts of violence like the My Lai massacre in 1968, prompted mass protests against the war in the United States. This increased opposition to the presidency of Lyndon Johnson, who declined to run for another term in 1968 and was succeeded by Richard Nixon. Nixon initially expanded the war into neighboring Laos and Cambodia, but then began to gradually withdraw troops from the war that had reached an unwinnable and bloody stalemate. The 1973 settlement, known as ‘An Agreement Ending the War and Restoring Peace in Vietnam’, included a cease-fire throughout Vietnam, as well as the withdrawal of U.S. forces. U.S. Representative Henry Kissinger and North Vietnamese Le Duc Tho were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts in Paris, though the latter refused the award. However, the fighting in Vietnam continued until 1975, when Saigon fell to the North Vietnamese Army, and the nation was united under communist rule.

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January 27th 1973: Paris Peace Accords

On this day in 1973, the Paris Peace Accords were signed in the French capital, ending U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War. American involvement in the country went back to the 1950s, with Cold War fears of the region falling to communism leading a series of Presidents to steadily increase the presence of American advisers in Vietnam. Vietnam successfully achieved independence from the colonial French in 1954, which also resulted in the division of the country between the communist North under Ho Chi Minh, and the South under U.S.-backed Ngo Dinh Diem. The two sections soon broke out in fighting, and in August 1964 the United States fully committed to the war after the Gulf of Tonkin incident. This was when the North Vietnamese allegedly fired on American ships in the gulf, which resulted in Congress passing a resolution allowing the President to intervene in the war to counter the communists. The high casualty rates of American soldiers, and tales of horrific acts of violence like the My Lai massacre in 1968, prompted mass protests against the war in the United States. This increased opposition to the presidency of Lyndon Johnson, who declined to run for another term in 1968 and was succeeded by Richard Nixon. Nixon initially expanded the war into neighboring Laos and Cambodia, but then began to gradually withdraw troops from the war that had reached an unwinnable and bloody stalemate. The 1973 settlement, known as ‘An Agreement Ending the War and Restoring Peace in Vietnam’, included a cease-fire throughout Vietnam, as well as the withdrawal of U.S. forces. U.S. Representative Henry Kissinger and North Vietnamese Le Duc Tho were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts in Paris, though the latter refused the award. However the fighting in Vietnam continued until 1975, when Saigon fell to the North Vietnamese Army, and the nation was united under communist rule.

Douglas A-1 Skyraider

Skyraiders from Constellation and Ticonderoga participated in the first U.S. Navy strikes against North Vietnam on 5 August 1964 as part of Operation Pierce Arrow in response to the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, striking against fuel depots at Vinh.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/08/us/08pentagon.html?pagewanted=2
Daniel Ellsberg is responsible for releasing the Pentagon Papers which provided 7,000 pages of info proving that Vietnam was based on lies. Not to mention the Gulf of Tonkin Incident was a lie, but the reason for going into Vietnam was also a lie. He went to court and won,he is a hero just like Assange, Manning, and Snowden. 
Just remember most if not all wars are based on lies and we send our troops off to die for profits, resources, and control.

sunnycryssy  asked:

Hey, could you sum up why the Vietnam war started? I'm Vietnamese and never really understood the war. This might sound like a stupid question.

It’s not a stupid question at all. As with most wars, there is a long backstory to its beginning that is not always easily understood.

The most basic summary is this:
To prevent the spread of communism. The United States originally backed France as its ally while France tried to retain control of its Vietnamese colony. After French defeat, the US took steps towards a more active role in the region. Various events, most notably the Gulf of Tonkin Incident, and following resolution, led to the involvement of US combat troops on the ground in Vietnam.

A more fleshed out (though by no means complete) summary is this:
French missionaries came to the area that would become known as Vietnam and, as many European countries did while exploring the world, began to spread and push their influence on the local people. France ultimately colonized Vietnam along with other parts of Indochina. During WWII, Japan conquered the colony however and while they allowed the local French government officials to remain, the colony was subject to a Japanese military presence. Many Vietnamese were unhappy with both of these larger powers’ occupation of their country and there was a growing independence movement.

The Viet Minh (a sort of pre-cursor to the Viet Cong) occupied Hanoi following the surrender of Japan and the end of WWII, but France did not want to lose her colony and the assets it provided. Fighting broke out in 1946 and thus began the First Indochina War.

Where does the United States come into play? Well Ho Chi Minh asked President Harry Truman for help in the matter of Vietnamese independence, but received no aid. The US did not want to upset its longtime ally of France, and gave monetary aid as France fought in Southeast Asia. This aid escalated, with the US also playing a role in back room politics and schemes. 

In 1954 the Geneva Accords were signed and elections were supposed to be held two years later that would officially reunite the country. They never happened. President Dwight Eisenhower, among others, was concerned about the spread of communism, and so aid continued to increase during his presidency. Advisers were sent to help train the Army of the Republic of Vietnam (more commonly known as South Vietnam) to fight the communist forces. The number of advisers continued to increase, doing so rather drastically under President John F Kennedy. 

Following the events occurring the first week of August 1964 in the Gulf of Tonkin, the US no longer felt that the communist threat in Vietnam could be dealt with using the more indirect methods it had been employing thus far. Combat troops were authorized and first landed in March 1965. The last combat troops would not leave until March 1973.