The Ending of the Conflict in Vietnam - Part Three by Ela Nicholson -…
The Ending of the Conflict in Vietnam - Part Three
by Ela Nicholson
The Watergate Affair
The media started to investigate the 'Watergate Affair' and evidence was soon found that implicated the President's Office (and Nixon).
Nixon obstructed the media as much as possible.
Nixon claimed to know nothing about it and won the election.
It was found out that Nixon had secretly recorded meetings in the Oval Office.
In June 1972, 5 men working for Nixon's re-election campaign were found inside the building trying to plant audio recording bugs.
Nixon refused to hand over the tapes.
The Democratic Party had their HQ at the Watergate buiding in Washington DC.
Eventually the Supreme Court forced him to, but the tapes had parts edited out.
In 1972 an election took place.
Nixon was threatened with 'impeachment' (a vote to remove him from office).
He resigned in August 1974.
Paris Peace Talks and US Withdrawal
Brezhnev (President of USSR) and advisors even agreed to act as intermediaries between the North and the USA.
By October 1972, a provisional agreement was reached.
In 1972, some things changed; North Vietnam launched a major attack but didn't take the South, and Nixon visited China and the USSR (supporters of North Vietnam).
The agreement was signed in January 1973, Nixon said it was "peace with honour".
The talks made little progress (North Vietnam wanted full and immediate withdrawal of US troops from the South: as the US public were turning against the war, this allowed North Vietnam to stand firm).
By the end of March 1973, all US forces had left Vietnam.
As early as 1969, Nixon allowed National Security Adviser - Henry Kissinger - to hold secret talks with North Vietnam.
This was a better result for North Vietnam than for the USA.
The Americans left, the North could build up their army and take over South Vietnam later.
But for America, the war was unwinnable and very unpopular.
In 1974, fighting between North Vietnam and South Vietnam began again.
This time, no US Military help was given.
The Fall of Saigon, 1975
In 1974, Nixon again found himself in trouble with the Watergate Scandal and he resigned.
The new President, Gerald Ford, also failed to get backing from Congress for Vietnam.
This was due to concerns about wasting US money, and that the South Vietnamese government were unpopular and corrupt.
Without money or military support, the South Vietnamese government couldn't last long.
Nixon had promised continual financial and military support to Vietnam, but Congress refused to allow it.
In December 1974, the North made a three-pronged attack against the South.
Major cities were taken with little fighting.
Refugees began to flee South - in what has since become known as the 'Convoy of Tears'.
Saigon fell by the end of April 1975.
The remaining US advisors were rescued by helicopter from the roof of the US embassy.
Television images showed desperate men, women, and children trying to escape via the embassy helipcopters.
The communists had won the fight for Vietnam.