Four C-123s are spraying defoliant over suspected Vietcong positions, in South Vietnam, during September of 1965. The planes were specially equipped, for these types of missions, and were able to cover a one-thousand-foot-wide swath for each pass they completed over this type of dense vegetation. U.S. Air Force photo.


After Congress passed the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, which gave President Johnson the authority to conduct the war as he saw fit, the United States developed its "Vietnam Defense Campaign." As more Americans died in Southeast Asia, even more were drafted.

In 1965, after winning the presidency in his own right, LBJ gave speeches with titles like these:  "We Will Stand in Vietnam" and a "Pattern for Peace in Southeast Asia."

But while the President talked at home, trying to address the concerns of an increasingly upset country (and to explain his reasons for escalating America's involvement in Southeast Asia), bombs exploded overseas. As LBJ predicted:

This will be a disorderly planet for a long time.

Decades later, the pictures and sounds of war are still haunting:

  • A Marine helicopter is hit by gunfire.
  • Marines, during search and clear missions in August of 1965, take suspected Viet Cong as prisoners.

In 1966, America launched a "Vietnam Air Campaign."  The F-4 Phantom II would soon become the workhorse of the war.

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5197stories and lessons created

Original Release: Nov 01, 2001

Updated Last Revision: Apr 17, 2019

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"WAR ESCALATES" AwesomeStories.com. Nov 01, 2001. Jun 05, 2020.
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