Monday, August 20, 2007

Overthrow #9 : Vietnam

I'm not really sure about this one. Yes, it certainly was an overthrow, but it was an overthrow of a guy we installed. Does cutting the strings of your own puppet count?

The Specifics: Since WWII, Vietnam had been fighting (led by Ho Cho Minh) for their right to rule themselves against France. In 1954, France gave up and sued for peace. At the ensuing meeting, it was decided that Vietnam would be split in half for 2 year (the North- Communist, the South- friends of France), and then would reunite.

France had no interest in sticking around, so the US decided to get involved, mostly due to fears of spreading communism. The US picked Diem, a fat anti-communist Catholic, to lead the South. Quickly, things began to fall apart: mutliple coup attempts, Budhist priest buring themselves, protests... Basically everyone hated Diem (although he did manage to get 98.2% of the vote in a 1955 referendum, it must've been a very vocal 1.8%), and even moreso when he put off reunification and constructed a cabinet of his family members. Everybody's favorite Ho had had enough, and started a war to reunite the Vietnams in 1960.

The US at this point also decided they were through with per Diem. They chose General Doung Van Minh ( A general? How strange) to be the new puppet and in 1963 they took Diem out. What does stand out in this overthrow is Diem wasn't exiled, he was murdered by Big Minh's men. They claimed his bullet ridden stabbed body was a suicide (see picture at right), but no one believed this. This meant that JFK had sanctioned the act that killed a Catholic.

Ranking (Worst to Least Worst)

2. Iran

6. Cuba

7. Vietnam

I'm going to rank this one pretty low. Again, per Diem was not the choice of the Vietnamese people in any way, he was the choice of the CIA. You could argue, and some have, that this was the pivotal event that led to us getting more involved into Vietnam, so consequently this event started the Vietnam War and all of its badness.

I think that's playing a little too "What If". You could argue that JFK would have pulled us out if reeelected and not assassinated (as he had told friends), and certainly if BFK had been elected the history of Vietnam would have changed. I think the biggest event for getting more involved in Vietnam was us getting more involved in Vietnam. So sorry Vietnam, but you just barely edge out Hawaii and Puerto Rico, and that's pretty much just for the violent way per Diem was ousted.

Labels: ,


Blogger The [Cherry] Ride said...


4:17 pm  
Blogger Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

A history blog! I can dig it!

8:41 pm  
Blogger Jenny! said...

I think JFK was an ugly mo fo! So NOT HOT! I don't know what's wrong with woman!

9:09 am  

Post a Comment

<< Home