The profound misjudgment that propelled the united states into the vietnam war was captured in two november 1961 cables from gen maxwell dean rusk, who as secretary of state argued ad nauseam that the united states had to fight in vietnam if for no other reason than because it was, in his (widely disputed) view,. Ever since the late reporter peter braestrup wrote his classic book about tet in 1977, it has become popular to assume that news media coverage of tet was a major reason why the united states lost the war, the news dispiriting the public and causing americans to think all was hopeless there is a kernel. Make research projects and school reports about tet offensive easy with credible articles from our free, online encyclopedia and dictionary inflict outright defeat on the american military, the communists had somehow to destroy american confidence that “limited war” could eventually bring victory for the united states. In 1968, when us officials were claiming the vietnam war was nearly won, north vietnam and the viet cong launched a devastating attack during the tet and their viet cong allies swept throughout cities and towns, into military bases, even breaching the walls of the us embassy grounds in saigon. Both of whom had strong personal and professional reasons for downplaying any intelligence failure, the united states had anticipated the offensive despite the assertions of westmoreland and helms, the historical record indicates that the us intelligence community failed to predict the tet offensive. We're going to talk about tet, which is held up as a pivotal moment in the vietnam war by many—not necessarily by all we'll get into lindsay: so— well, let's talk a little bit about the political scene, frankie, both in the united states and in south vietnam because there was a reason why general william. The tet offensive was a coordinated series of north vietnamese attacks on more than 100 cities and outposts in south vietnam the offensive was an attempt to foment rebellion among the south vietnamese population and encourage the united states to scale back its involvement in the vietnam war though us and.
Vo nguyen giap had planned the offensive to break the will of the united states and south vietnam and end a long stalemate in the struggle by the north fifty years ago, starting with tet, millions of americans concluded that enemy soldiers in vietnam were willing to die in large numbers for their cause. Add to this the evidence that the purpose of these coordinated attacks on the points of governmental control in vietnam was not to kill or even to seize control the tet offensive was understood at the time throughout the united states as a massive refutation of the claim that the vietnamese adversary was. The north vietnamese surprise attack on dozens of military sites in south vietnam, including the us embassy in saigon, had a seismic impact on the us public while a military failure for the north, it was a huge propaganda success attitudes in the us towards the war and toward president lyndon. How did the tet offensive influence society, politics, and military policy in the united states back to top overview the vietnam war was fought between the communist north vietnamese and the democratic south vietnamese originally, a french controlled colony, vietnam gained its independence after the battle of.
Just as it happened in eastern europe, so could communism spread to the united states if it wentshow more content most of the reasons for ignoring the possibility of the tet offensive involved the assurances made by officials that the north vietnamese were far too weak to launch a massive counteroffensive general. This was the most significant battle of the vietnam war for both north vietnam and the united states the north vietnamese had two major objectives in mind: cause as much destruction to the united states and south vietnamese forces as possible and encourage south vietnamese civilians to turn against the united states. Tet offensive: examination of the tet offensive and its significance in the outcome of the vietnam war alternatively, the offensive could convince the united states that it could not win the war many americans had reached that conclusion by the third day of the attacks by february 1968, the us death toll in vietnam had. During the vietnam war (1959–1975), the tet offensive in 1968 significantly marked a crucial turning point that led to the “de-escalation” and total withdrawal of us troops from vietnam, just several years later mr william  foreign relations of the united states, 1964-1968, volume vi, vietnam, january-august 1968.
The role of tet offensive in the history of the united states of america. On its 40th anniversary, alan woods analysed the events that led to the vietnam war and the significance of the tet offensive in bringing about the defeat of having deliberately split the country in half, the united states underwrote the vicious dictatorship of president diem in south vietnam, a fanatical.
Around midnight, jan 30, 1968, vietcong and north vietnamese army troops began a massive surprise attack on us, south vietnamese and allied forces across south vietnam. When americans wince upon hearing presidents make proclamations about foreign policy, the legacy of the 1968 tet offensive looms large conducted a massive public relations blitz in the end of 1967 to convince the public that the war was nearing a conclusion and that the united states was winning. The purpose is obvious: to obscure the fact that the united states did attack south vietnam and the major war was fought against south vietnam the real invasion of south vietnam which was directed largely against the rural society began directly in 1962 after many years of working through mercenaries and client groups.
In fact, in strictly military terms, the two-month struggle known as the tet offensive was a disaster for the attackers it ended with the expulsion of the north vietnamese army and the southern-based insurgent troops, known in the west as vietcong, from each place they invaded in the theater of public opinion in the united. The us military fought with disciplined determination into 1968, but after the tet offensive, disastrous crime, drug and morale problems poisoned the army in particular, vc suicide squads penetrated the grounds of the united states embassy in saigon (now ho chi minh city) the enemy shrewdly used.
Tet offensive 23 a viet cong prisoner being restrained by south vietnamese marines next to corpses of 11 of his slain fellow guerrillas after a street a vietnamese national police officer in a tunnel and bunker network leading from pagoda grounds to an outside entrance in the gia dinh province on the. Then came tet it was 2:45 am, on jan 30, 1968—the day vietnam celebrated the lunar new year—when viet cong troops raced through a three-foot hole they had blown in a wall protecting the united states embassy in saigon thus began the tet offensive, in which thousands of communist-backed viet. It is worth nothing that there are several factors involved in why the united states lost the vietnam war vietnam war should have been negotiated to an end and troops removed directly following the tet offensive, because by that time, it was made evident that further fighting would only cause more unnecessary harms.