October 11

This Day in History

Vietnam War

Oct 11, 1961:

Kennedy ponders the Vietnam situation

At a meeting of the National Security Council, President John F. Kennedy is asked by his advisers to accept "as our real and ultimate objective the defeat of the Vietcong." The Joint Chiefs of Staff estimated that 40,000 U.S. troops could clean up "the Vietcong threat" and another 120,000 could cope with possible North Vietnamese or Chinese Communist intervention. Kennedy wanted to prevent the fall of South Vietnam to the Communist insurgents, but decided to send General Maxwell Taylor to Vietnam to study the situation. Ultimately, Kennedy would send advisers, helicopters, and other military support to South Vietnam to aid President Ngo Dinh Diem in his fight against the Viet Cong.

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