September 10

This Day in History

Vietnam War

Sep 10, 1964:

President Johnson sends signal to both North and South Vietnamese

Following the Tonkin Gulf incidents, in which North Vietnamese torpedo boats attacked U.S. destroyers, and the subsequent passage of the Tonkin Gulf Resolution empowering him to react to armed attacks, President Lyndon Johnson authorizes a series of measures "to assist morale in South Vietnam and show the Communists [in North Vietnam] we still mean business." These measures included covert action such as the resumption of the DeSoto intelligence patrols and South Vietnamese coastal raids to harass the North Vietnamese. Premier Souvanna Phouma of Laos was also asked to allow the South Vietnamese to make air and ground raids into southeastern Laos, along with air strikes by Laotian planes and U.S. armed aerial reconnaissance to cut off the North Vietnamese infiltration along the route that became known as the Ho Chi Minh Trail. Eventually, U.S. warplanes would drop over 2 million tons of bombs on Laos as part of Operations Steel Tiger and Tiger Hound between 1965 and 1973.

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