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To What Extent Can the Tet Offensive of 1968 Be Described as the Key Turning Point in the Vietnam War 1968-75?

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To what extent can the Tet Offensive of 1968 be described as the key turning point in the Vietnam War 1968-75?

A ‘turning point’ of the Vietnam War could be interpreted in different ways. For example, the Tet Offensive, which took place January 31st, 1968, could be understood as a turning point in the US state of the war (were they winning at this point?) as well as entirely changing the opinion of the US public – literally splitting them in two as to whether the war could be justified. Alongside the Tet Offensive, several other factors could also be interpreted as a turning point in the war. The Cambodian Offensive, of 29th March 1970 could be used alongside President Richard Nixon’s resignation and the entire withdrawal of soldiers in Vietnam.

As the largest set of battles during the course of the War, causing severe losses to the communist side of the NVA (North Vietnamese Army) and Viet Cong, the Tet Offensive was the first majorly reported part of the Vietnam War and thus changed many people’s opinion on the war after realization of the tragic event. Approval rating of current president Lyndon B. Johnson plummeted by almost 20%. Despite Walter Cronkite’s interview stating that the war was “unwinnable”, opinion on the war had changed long before. Violent protests took place in Washington during 1968, forcing Johnson to stop the sending of 200,000 troops – this effectively marked the end of the gradual escalation policy in Vietnam. Tet could be argued as a severe turning point in the change of America’s long-term realization and changing opinion of the War and the start of many protests taking place in every major city in America during the next 7 years. Tet showed a limit to US power, which had not yet been achieved.

Another military circumstance, which one may believe to be considered as a turning point during the war, could be the Cambodian Offensive...

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