Why were attempts to end the war unsuccessful?

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  • Why were attempts to end the war unsuccessful?
    • Vietnamisation
      • Nixon planned to withdraw US troops and replace them with the ARVN
        • Men aged 17-43 in Vietnam conscripted into ARVN
          • ARVN received increased funding
            • By 1971 only 150,000 US troops left - 500,000 US troops were present in 1968
      • Cons
        • The ARVN did not have the military strength of the USA
          • Proved during 1972 Easter Campaign launched by the North
            • The South were only saved by US air power
              • The ARVN on the ground couldn't stop to attack
        • Nixon didn't have any other alternatives
          • This was because the pressure from the US public to remove  troops was so great
      • Pros
        • Made ARVN bigger
        • Helped USA to get out of the war
        • Followed policy of withdrawal
    • Escalation
      • 1970
        • Nixon launched bombing campaign on Cambodia to destroy the supply line
          • Wanted to show the North that USA would not accept peace at any time
            • April 1970 - 30,000 ground troops deployed into Cambodia
              • This event was the main cause for the Kent State University protest
      • 1972
        • Having just recovered from the Tet Offensive, NVA attacked South
          • In response, Nixon launched 11 day bombing campaign
            • Operation Linebacker
              • B52 bombers strategically targeted roads, railways, ports and storage depots
                • This included Haiphong harbour - this was not targeted during Operation Rolling Thunder
      • To add further pressure on the North, the US invented 'Madman Theory'
        • This claimed Nixon was mentally unstable and might use nuclear weapons
      • Peace talks begun to take place in 1973
        • This showed that the North felt they could not defeat the South by force
    • Negotiation
      • Nixon improved relations with the USSR and China - the main suppliers and supporters of North Vietnam
        • They then leaned on North Vietnam to negotiate a peace treaty with the USA
      • Paris Peace Accords
        • 1973-75
          • Agreements made
            • All US armed forces to leave
              • By April 1973 all US troops had left Vietnam
            • All US POWs to be released
            • North to recognise South
            • Elections scheduled for the future
      • Effects
        • Led to withdrawal of troops
        • 600 POWs released
          • Great sense of relief felt in USA
    • The Fall of Saigon
      • 1975
        • USA no longer involved in war
          • North Vietnam launched prolonged attack on South
            • Advancing from North, Laos and Cambodia
              • Split ARVN
                • Major cities fell
                  • Hue, Danang
                    • Refugees fled South - 'convoy of tears'
                      • By end of April 1975 Saigon had fallen
                        • Remaining officials airlifted by helicopter from the top of the embassy building
                        • The whole of Vietnam was now Communist
      • Effects
        • Proved Vietnamisation had not worked
          • The ARVN could not resist an attack without the US
        • Nixon's attempts at democracy had not worked
          • The USSR continued to fund the North
          • North did not respect South as independent state

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