October 11, 1961 : Kennedy ponders the Vietnam situation

Introduction

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.

Article Details:

October 11, 1961 : Kennedy ponders the Vietnam situation

  • Author

    History.com Staff

  • Website Name

    History.com

  • Year Published

    2009

  • Title

    October 11, 1961 : Kennedy ponders the Vietnam situation

  • URL

    http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/kennedy-ponders-the-vietnam-situation

  • Access Date

    October 17, 2017

  • Publisher

    A+E Networks