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Barry Goldwater Arizona state senator decided to run for the office of President of the United States of America in 1964 His opponent was Lyndon Baynes Johnson who had held the office the year previous due to the assassination of John F Kennedy One of the biggest issues for both candidates was the situation in Vietnam Vietnam was the longest war in which the US took part It lasted between 1957 and 1975 but the US did not become officially involved until 1965 Vietnam a small country in Asia was divided into Communist-ruled North Vietnam and non-Communist South Vietnam North Vietnam and South Vietnamese rebels fought to take over South Vietnam The US and the South Vietnamese army tried to stop them but failed in the end This was a major issue which affected many people in the US Everyone was related to or knew someone who had been drafted or enlisted to go and fight in the Vietnam war Inevitably the two candidates for the presidency had to face this issue and take a definitive stance on it Normally the President would just be asked what his opinion was on a war like this to assess what their character was like but this election it was very important to find out exactly what the would-be president would do about Vietnam In 1964 Congress passed the Tonkin Gulf Resolution This act gave the President the power to take all necessary measures and to prevent further aggression in Vietnam This came after two US destroyer ships the Maddox and the C Turner Joy were both sunk in the Gulf of Tonkin near North Vietnam The President-elect would have the power to wage war against Vietnam if he saw fit Barry Goldwater was against the war from the beginning Knowing that this was a huge issue in the upcoming race he was careful what he said but apparently not careful enough In an interview with Howard K
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