President Lyndon Johnson as he speaks at News Conference July 28, 1965: My fellow Americans, Not long ago I received a letter from a woman in the Midwest. She wrote:Dear Mr. President: In my humble way I am writing to you about the crisis in Vietnam. I have a son who is now in Viet-Nam. My husband served in World War II. Our country was at war, but now, this time, it is just something that I don’t understand. Why?
CU images of Hitler and Mussolini standing while riding in open car in Munich in 1938, streets of Munich lined with cheering people. CU of British Prime Minster Neville Chamberlain stepping from British Airways plane at Munich. Excellent image of German Honor Guard with white gloves and rifles at present arms. Hitler and Chamberlain walking up steps. Image of crowd of German people with arms raised in Hitler salute Nazi salute. Image of Hitler and Mussolini standing on balcony. CU image of British Prime Minster Neville Chamberlain speaking to the British on September 30, 1938 after meeting with Hitler We regard the agreement signed last night and the Anglo-German Naval Agreement as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again. Peace in our time.
Destroyed buildings and destruction of cities in WWII. CU image of Italian dictator Mussolini. Scenes of fighting after Italy invaded Ethiopia. Haile Selassie, Emperor of Ethiopia, made his protest before the League of Nations. CU of the Reich Nazi Germany symbol, the Imperial Eagle with the Swastika. Shows the Anschluss referring to the occupation and annexation of Austria into Nazi Germany in 1938.
Invasion of South Korea by Communist North Korea in 1950. Images of flashes from artillery guns firing at night. Battle scenes of the U.S. troops fighting in Korean War. Tanks firing guns in Korea. U.S. tanks in dug-in positions in Korea. Image of U.S. tank crossing bridge at 38th parallel in Korea. Sign reads You Are Now Crossing 38th Parallel.
CU image of President Johnson as he speaks at News Conference July 28, 1965: Why must young Americans, born into a land exultant with hope and with golden promise, toil and suffer and sometimes die in such a remote and distant place? The answer, like the war itself, is not an easy one, but it echoes clearly from the painful lessons of half a century. Three times in my lifetime, in two World Wars and in Korea, Americans have gone to far lands to fight for freedom. We have learned at a terrible and a brutal cost that retreat does not bring safety and weakness does not bring peace and it is this lesson that has brought us to Viet-Nam.
War of French Indochina.The War of French Indochina enters it’s final phase at Dien Bien Phu in May 1954. The Viet Minh, a coalition of Communist and Vietnamese Nationalists under the leadership of Ho Chi Minh, defeated the French forces. Image of aircraft dropping supplies to French Troops in the Battle of Dien Bien Phu. CU mages of French artillery guns firing. Scenes of battlefield at Dien Bien Phu. Scenes of people in Hanoi scratching for food. Scenes of the French Forces leaving French Indochina. Image of a Viet Minh flag flying over Hanoi. CU images of Communist Viet Minh forces marching into Hanoi. Signing of Geneva Agreements granting Indochina independence from France and dividing Vietnam at the 17th parallel with the Communist Viet Minh controlling north Vietnam. Image of Vyacheslav Molotov shaking hand of Zhou Enlai after signing Geneva Agreements.
Vietnamese refugees fleeing to South Vietnam from Communist North Vietnam. Image of map of Indochina and the dividing of Vietnam at the 17th parallel. People building new homes in South Vietnam. Images of South Vietnamese people dropping ballots in ballot box during free election. Images of South Vietnamese workers harvesting rice from rice field.
Assassination and bombings in Saigon by Vietcong. Image of bullet riddled automobile windshield and dead body of man in automobile in Saigon. Images of assassination and acts of terror carried out by the Vietcong, a guerrilla force supported by Communist North Vietnam. Images of Vietcong guerrillas. Images of Vietcong guerrillas attacking and burning huts in South Vietnam village. Bodies of dead South Vietnamese villagers killed by Vietcong guerrillas. Framed photograph of Ho Chi-Minh.