The Domino Theory Essay Research Paper In

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The Domino Theory Essay, Research Paper In the wake of the temporary partitioning of Vietnam at the Geneva Conference of 1954, the Dwight D. Eisenhower administration was determined to do what it could to ensure that South Vietnam remained out of the hands of Communists. Eisenhower suggested in a 1954 speech that if the Communists were victorious in Vietnam, the rest of Southeast Asia would “topple like a row of dominoes” to Communist ideology. The Eisenhower administration believed that if Southeast Asia turned Communist it would effect the United States in a great number of ways, including economically and politically. Representative John F. Kennedy, in 1952, said that Asia is an area “where Communists are attempting to seize control?where the tide of events has been

moving against us. The Communists have a chance of seizing all of Asia in the next five or six years.” The assumption of Eisenhower and his administration that Communism would spread like a bad virus was a false one. Not only was their ample evidence during the actual fighting of the Vietnam War that this was not the case, but from declassified papers and notes it can be shown that the domino theory was notably inaccurate. Some even thought the domino theory might adverse effects on the United States. Senator Frank Church said, “I think too much intervention on our part may well spread Communism through the ex-colonial world rather than thwart it.” The two major Communist powers, China and the Soviet Union, were too busy with internal affairs to worry about external

adventures, such as Vietnam. Also, who was to say that the type of guerrilla warfare and other tactics utilized by the Viet Cong would work in other parts of the world? Vietnam was a case unlike many others and the idea that other acts of nationalism could be as effective as the Vietnamese was a far-stretched idea. All in all, it can be proven that the United States’ assumption of a domino effect was a poor one in predicting the way things would pan out in Southeast Asia. The domino theory was also incorrect because the United States’ relationship with China and the Soviet Union would have a much greater impact on the world than the outcome in Vietnam. The United States’ main reason for entering the war in Vietnam was to contain Communism. Their main reason for containing

Communism was that it would fuel the fire in such monolithic, expansionist countries like China and the Soviet Union. However, this was an inaccurate assumption. This argument will be divided into 2 parts: China and the Soviet Union. The US military and economic aid programs, the US’s choice of allies, the US’s priorities and commitment to oppose Communism in Vietnam were all directly related to the central goal of containing the expansion of Communist power. First, China’s power in Asia depended more on factors other than the outcome in Vietnam. China was more concerned with her ability to develop a modern industrial power, her capacity to influence the policies of other Asian countries by non-military means and her opportunities to exploit interstate rivalries in Asia.

China was having a lot of trouble internally and needed to concentrate on those issues first and foremost. China’s economy had been growing at three percent per year, a rate not much higher than India’s, which was far from impressive. Also, there is much evidence suggesting that opposition to Mao Zedong wanted to attach greater priority to modernizing China’s economy then to frittering away China’s resources in external adventures like Vietnam. China found it impossible to do perform a balancing act. They could not woo underdeveloped countries towards Communism while supporting anti-government oppositions in the same places. China also made it clear that revolutionaries would have to come to power only through their own efforts without help from China. China had realized