The Tet Offensive (1968)

the Tet Offensive 1968 the Vietnam War a celebration of the Lunar New Year the Tet is an important holiday to Vietnamese people it had been established that the Tet holiday would be used as a truce between the communist forces and the South Vietnamese for the Saigon government there was no reason to believe otherwise as they announced a ceasefire with the National Liberation Front in January 1968 the North Vietnamese and the Communist Viet Cong forces would use the event to their advantage to strategically launch an offensive when the enemy’s guard was down most Vietnamese would spend the holiday with their families including the ARVN soldiers who were on leave this made the cities in the south less defended by attacking major cities in the south such as Wei at Saigon it was believed that the morale of the Saigon government its citizens and the ARVN would collapse and then caused the United States to withdraw their defense of South Vietnam the Vietcong secretly moved into the cities in preparation checking into local hotels and blending in by disguising themselves as civilians on holiday they also smuggled their weapons into the cities by hiding them in delivery trucks holding rice and flowers On January 21st 1968 in preparation for the main offensive the North Vietnamese Army attacked the US combat base of Khe Sanh US troops mainly consisting of Marines defended the base against two to three NVA divisions and artillery bombardments the attack would be intended as a diversion by generals Yap while the communist forces prepared for their true objective of the Tet Offensive attacking on the morning of January 30th 1968 a day earlier than scheduled tens of thousands of Vietcong struck the u.s. an ARVN basis and several cities including the major cities of Wei at Saigon where fighting was particularly fierce the defenders within saigon were ARVN troops many who were still returning to the city and handfuls of US troops consisting of US Marines or administrative staff unprepared for combat the Vietcong managed to hit many key targets one particular target was the US Embassy in Saigon where Vietcong sappers breached through its fortified walls with explosives diplomats sought shelter inside while a handful of US Marines and military police exchanged shots with them eventually the defenders of the embassy were reinforced by US troops by helicopter and soon the Vietcong sappers were dead this particular attack was captured by cameras and caused a media firestorm back in America Quay city saw intense close-quarters fighting around the Citadel during the battle of way 5,000 North Vietnamese troops 150 US Marines and 421 ARVN troops were killed after the battle had cleared it was discovered that the Vietcong had arrested those associated with the South Vietnamese regime executed them and buried them in mass graves the first phase of the Tet Offensive was followed by a second phase on smaller cities on May 4th and then followed by a third phase in August to September eventually u.s. and South Vietnamese forces recaptured and secured the cities from the enemy forces at the expense of heavy civilian casualties but this did not cause any rebellion against the Saigon government the Tet Offensive stunned America and president lyndon b johnson who had claimed the Vietcong forces were a week amateur force although the United States could claim victory because the Tet Offensive caused incredibly high casualties for the NVA and the Vietcong it was also seen as a strategic victory for the communist forces televised footage of the Tet Offensive uncensored and tuned in to by millions of Americans back home shocked the American public opinion and strengthened the anti-war movement while support for President Johnson’s administration would fall to an all-time low and he would give way to the next US President Richard Nixon subscribe for more Vietnam War history videos get simple history the Vietnam War and simple history the Cold War today thank you guys for all your support on the simple history YouTube channel if you enjoyed please consider visiting our patreon page there you can show us your support for the channel by donating and make a huge difference in what we’re able to create for you plus you can get early access on upcoming videos so let’s keep it growing and thank you for being part of this amazing community
Video source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezuFR5OwHU8

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