Why Did The U.S Get Involved In The Vietnam War?

Vietnam War was one of the most brutal wars ever fought after the end of the Second World War.

More than 2.9 million Vietnamese and 58,000 US soldiers lost lives in that battle.

But, what were the reasons for our nation’s involvement in it?

Short Answer:

  • The U.S And Its Western Allies Feared The Domino Theory.
  • North Vietnam Attacked In A Navy Ship of The U.S.
  • The US And Its Allies Did Not Want Soviet Union’s Dominance In That Region.

Why did our country, the U.S get involved in the Vietnam War?

Here in this post, we are going to discuss this answer.

So, stay tuned.

You are going to learn the three core reasons throughout this answer.

Why The U.S Involved In The Vietnam War

The U.S Feared About The Domino Theory  

In 1954, Vietnam temporarily got divided into two parts. One part became North Vietnam and the other part became South Vietnam.

As per the Geneva treaty, North Vietnam became a communist nation and South Vietnam became a pro-west nation (Friendly nation of US, UK, and other western countries).

But gradually, in South Vietnam also, the influence of the communists started growing, which made the USA a little worried.

They didn’t want South Vietnam to become Communist.

Especially, the US and its other western allies feared the ‘Domino Theory’.

But what was it?

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As per the theory, if communists get able to control a nation’s ruling power then they would start capturing other neighboring nation’s ruling power also.

Communalists’ influence would start bringing down neighboring nation’s democratic governments.

The USA feared that it would end up their influence in South-East Asian politics.

They didn’t want India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, to become Communist nations.

Therefore, they were always finding a keyhole to stop North Vietnam somehow.

The fear of ‘Domino theory’ or stop communism expansion was the first most significant factor for the USA’s entry into the war of Vietnam. 

The Domino Theory, vietnam war

North Vietnam Attacked In A Navy Ship of The U.S

On August 2, 1964, North Vietnam attacked in a navy ship of the USA, named ‘USS Maddox, DD-731’ at the Gulf of Tonkin.

But here, they made a major mistake.

The mistake was, they attacked the US navy ship in international water boundary.

American government used it as a big opportunity. 

After this incident, the USA officially entered the war against North Vietnam.

In history, this incident is popular as the ‘Gulf of Tonkin incident or USS Maddox incident’.

However, this incident remained in controversy.

Because, though the original American report blamed North Vietnam for that incident; but some other reports like ‘Pentagon Papers’ proved in 2005 that it was a consperecy theory created by the USA’s government.

They did it because they wanted a good reason for entering the war.

Later years, this war frenzy of the United States’ government had face a lot criticism in the international stage.

The US And Its Allies Did Not Want Soviet Union's Dominance

The US And Its Allies Did Not Want Soviet Union’s Dominance

Many experts agree with one fact that the war of Vietnam was one of the worst result of the Cold War between the Communist Soviet Union and the United States of America.

The country just became a ground for these two giants’ proxy war. 

According to them, these two superpowers were mainly responsible for the deaths of the millions of innocents (mainly Vietnamese).

The US and their Western allies believed that if they did not interfere in Vietnam, then the Soviet Union would increase their domination.

And this will either increase the impact of communism in the entire South Eastern part of the Asia continent.

The United States never wanted the Soviets to become powerful here and hence, when they entered, it completely became a ground for proxy war.

Because the Soviet Union and China also came further to help the North Vietnam.

Although, China and Soviet Union didn’t directly fought the war; but via providing money, arms, and other necessary items, they helped North Vietnam a lot. 


Did The United States Succeed In Their Intention?

No, with the help of China and USSR, the small country almost defeated the United States of America.

Even, America had to lose their 58,000 soldiers, which was of course, a huge disaster for the powerful nations’ dignity. 


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