Research Paper on a question and thesis selected. Should look to answer the questions asked, and see if the thesis is proven or not based on research conducted.
Question: Why did President Nixon (U.S) abandon his South Vietnamese allies at the Paris Peace Accords during the Vietnam War?
Thesis: Richard Nixon is the most controversial figure in the Vietnam War. As an original supporter of the War, his actions directly contradicted his words and plans in Asia. Perhaps the most questionable decision was his exit strategy, (of Vietnam) which included abandoning his South Vietnamese allies in the Paris Peace Accords. When analyzing Nixon and his administration there will be contradictory views. The realist view of Nixon would argue that his actions are rational since they are rooted in self interest and power maintenance, not morality. Furthermore, in international politics, interest can often change due to a change in circumstances. Nixon abandoned South Vietnam at the Paris Peace Accords because the failure in Vietnam would diminish his political power both domestically and internationally. Nixon’s foreign policy promise during his presidency revolved around ending the Vietnam War through diplomacy also referred to as détente. Studies suggest that Nixon tested a variety of foreign policy methods like the “Madman Theory” and “Vietnamization” but ultimately settled on using diplomacy as a way of abandoning the South Vietnamese government. The result of his action was a “face-saving” deal with the Communist in Paris.
“What were the international facts that shaped Nixon and Kissinger’s actions? Why was their treatment of South Vietnam “immoral”? Recent scholarship suggests that Nixon bungled U.S. relations with China, giving up Taiwan but failing to achieve Beijing’s cooperation in ending the war. The U.S. claimed the war was an illegal invasion of one country by another, suggesting that the SV government should be party to any agreement; the North Vietnamese claimed the war was a civil war and that they were involved because American forces bombed the north in 1964. If so, the Viet Cong and SV government should have been present at the negotiating table. Neither the VC nor the SV government were invited to the talks. Why?”
Tad Szulc, Nixon’s Memoirs, Kissinger’s Memoirs, the concepts of rational choice theory, and bounded rationality are really useful to include in your research.