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Waging War, Planning PeaceU.S. Noncombat Operations and Major Wars$
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Aaron Rapport

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780801453588

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801453588.001.0001

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State Building during Escalation in Vietnam

State Building during Escalation in Vietnam

(p.167) Chapter 5 State Building during Escalation in Vietnam
Waging War, Planning Peace

Aaron Rapport

Cornell University Press

This chapter discusses the Johnson administration's emphasis on combat operations as the solution for the Vietnam War. As the communist insurgency in South Vietnam (RVN) intensified with the formation of the National Liberation Front (or Vietcong) in 1960, U.S. efforts in the country became increasingly focused on combat. Indeed, noncombat activities were increasingly overshadowed by missions to kill insurgents and coerce the government of North Vietnam (DRV). Moreover, Lyndon Johnson initiated a prolonged bombing campaign in the spring of 1965 and, in July of that year, authorized the deployment of more than 100,000 ground troops to the RVN. The U.S. Army was not inclined to engage in state building or counterinsurgency campaigns. Instead, officers advanced plans that would use firepower to overwhelm the enemy and achieve victory, as U.S. armed forces had done in previous wars.

Keywords:   Johnson administration, combat operations, Vietnam War, National Liberation Front, Vietcong, state building, counterinsurgency campaigns

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