The Tet Offensive, a turning point ?
The Tet Offensive was a military campaign during the Vietnam War that began on January 31, 1968. The Vietcong and the North Vietnam Army (NVA) fought againstthe forces of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) and the United States. The purpose of the offensive was to strike military and civilian command and control centers throughout South Vietnam and to spark ageneral uprising among the population that would then topple the Saigon government, thus ending the war in a single blow. Was the Tet Offensive a turning point in the Vietnam War? To answer thisquestion we will use 5 documents : 3 reports, a picture and a graphic.
I – The Tet Offensive, a major attack.
Source A :
We can see how suprising the offensive was « suddenly, barely 19 hours afterthe had ended a self-imposed, week-long Tet truce ».
Also, we see that the offensive was well prepared and bound to cause huge damages « gunners lauchend coordinated rocket and mortar attacks onmore than 100 cities, towns and military installations throughout South Vietnam, including the capital of Saigon ». This last point proves that the Vietcong wanted to end the war thanks to this attack.Source B :
The picture shows a town devastated by the offensive. We can distinguish a tank which is reponsible for this disaster. We can see as well enormous clouds of smoke, caused by mortars.II – The Tet Offensive didn't work the way Communist wanted
Source C :
General Tran Do says explicitly « in all honesty, we didn't achieve our main objective, which was to spur uprisingsthroughout the South ». He nonetheless doens't see the offensive as a failure, according to him, the Vietcong is happy to have inflicted heavy casualties on the Americans and their « puppets » (Australia,South Korea, Thailand).
However, using Source D, we can see that the Vietcong and the NVA have incurred a lot of casualties, way more important than Americans and their puppets. Indeed the deads of...
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