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Vietnam's Future - Hawaiian Parley Affirms U.S. Aims

The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration


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  •  A three-day summit meeting between U.S. and South Vietnam leaders was aimed at bringing a new social and economic perspective to the war in Vietnam. 
  •  President Johnson flew to Hawaii for the talks with the officials from Saigon, and at the conclusion of the conference with Prime Minister Ky left and chief of state too, issued a Declaration of Honolulu. 
  •  The meeting was called to clarify U.S. commitments and to resolve the confusion on South Vietnam's future. 
  •  While the Asian and American leaders remain far apart on some facets of the war, they did agree that social reforms must follow quickly on military victory.  
  •  Premier Ky wants the bombing of North Vietnam stepped up; the U.S. does not. 
  •  The U.S. wants the communist Vietcong to sit in on peace negotiations when they come; Premier Key does not. 
  •  However, the summation of the declaration calls for these joint aims: to defend against aggression, to work for social revolution, to aim for free self government, to attack hunger, ignorance, and disease, and to search unendingly for peace. 
  •  The meeting breaks up in an atmosphere of new and closer cooperation in South Vietnam. 
  •  Meanwhile in Los Angeles, Vice President Humphrey awaits Mr. Johnson's return to the mainland. 
  •  The President had already alerted Mr. Humphrey that the Vice President was to leave for Southeast Asia on a firsthand survey of economic reforms that could be put into effect immediately. 
  •  The presidential jet no sooner rolls to a stop then the two men hold a briefing session aboard the plane, and then an impromptu press conference.  
  •  The president makes the formal announcement of Mr. Humphrey's mission and then Mr. Johnson sums up the aims outlined in the Declaration of Honolulu.  
  •  [Johnson]: And we shall fight the battle against aggression in Vietnam to a successful conclusion. We shall fight the battle for social construction and throughout the world we shall fight the battle for peace.  
  •  And to the American people, who have given us their strength in every hour of trial, I say to you that we shall fight all of these battles successfully, and we shall prevail. 
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  •  President Johnson meets with officials from Saigon 
  •  The president sits in on a meeting with other officials 
  •  Vice President Humphrey awaits President Johnson’s arrival in Los Angeles 
  •  The president holds a press conference 
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A three day summit meeting with South Vietnam leaders aimed at bringing new social and economic perspective to the war culminates in the Declaration of Honolulu, an outline of both wartime and peacetime aims in Southeast Asia. Later, President Johnson confers with Vice President Humphrey in Los Angeles before Humphrey leaves for Saigon to implement conference conclusions.
Thirty-sixth president of the United States, Lyndon B. Johnson, was born on a hill country farm near Stonewall, Texas on August 27, 1908 to Samuel Ealy Johnson, a former Texas legislator, and Rebekah Baines Johnson.  He attended Southwest Teachers College, now Texas-State University, graduating with a degree in history and social science in 1930. LBJ spent one year as principal and teacher in Cotulla, educating impoverished Hispanic elementary school students. LBJ became the secretary to Texas Congressman Richard M. Kleberg in 1931; the four year position helped him gain influential contacts in Washington. Johnson married Claudia Alta “Lady Bird” Taylor on November 17, 1934.
LBJ acted as Director of the National Youth Administration in Texas from 1935 to 1937. Johnson won his first legislative election in 1937 for the Tenth Congressional District, a position he held for eleven years. He was a firm supporter of President Roosevelt’s New Deal and in 1940 acted as Chairman of the Democratic Campaign Committee. In 1948, following his service as a Lieutenant Naval Commander during World War II, LBJ ran as the Democratic nominee for Senate. In a cloud of controversy, he narrowly defeated former Texas Governor Coke Stevens and easily beat his Republican opponent in the general election.  Before winning his second senate term, LBJ was elected Majority Whip in 1951, became the youngest ever Minority Senate Leader in 1953, and was voted Majority Leader in 1954. Johnson unsuccessfully ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1960 but was selected to be Vice-President under John F. Kennedy. 
Lyndon Johnson was sworn in as Commander and Chief aboard Air Force One following President Kennedy’s assassination on November 22, 1963 and won reelection in 1964. President Johnson passed landmark legislation with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Debate over military efforts in Vietnam intensified in late 1963 when the President stated that the United States would not withdraw from Southeast Asia. Escalation of the war against North Vietnam brought disapproval from Democrats, claiming the efforts were misguided, and from Republicans who criticized the administration for not executing sufficient military vigor. Antiwar protests, urban riots, and racial tension eroded Johnson’s political base by 1967, which further dissolved following the Tet Offensive in January 1968. On March 31, 1968, President Johnson announced that we would not seek a second Presidential term.
After returning to Texas, Johnson oversaw the construction of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum on the University of Texas campus in Austin. Throughout his political career, LBJ was an influential figure in Texas affairs; his policies brought military bases, crop subsidies, government facilities, and federal jobs to the state. After suffering a massive heart attack, former President Johnson died at his ranch on January 22, 1973. In February of the same year, NASA’s Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston was renamed the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, in honor of one of the country’s most influential Texans.