Media played a vital role in changing the views of pro-war Americans to anti-war views by giving death counts, setting the stage for the anti-war movement to perform on, and publicizing leaked government information. The Vietnam War was known as the first televised war (“Vietnam Television”). Americans could watch as United States Troops fought, and the nightly news updated Americans on the death count and progress of US Troops in Vietnam (“Vietnam Television”).
While clips of brave Americans fighting in the Vietnam War were constantly being televised and politicians tried to swindle Americans into believing that the United States’ involvement in Vietnam was for a just cause, the press and media often showed the negative effects of US involvement in Vietnam through death counts. In fact, many historians feel that the total death count was around 850,000 (Siegel et. al.). Every …show more content…
This is why the anti-war movement was so successful. Everything that the anti-war movement did was broadcasted by all of the major news companies (“Vietnam Television”). One such example of the media unintentionally helping the anti-war movement was the Kent State Tragedy. Kent State, a university in Ohio, was home to a large group of anti-war student protestors (“Kent”). On May 4, 1970, while protesting the decision to invade Cambodia, 28 National Guardsmen opened fire on a group of protestors (“Kent”). Four students were killed and nine were wounded (“Kent”). The National Guardsmen had been dispatched because protestors had set the university’s ROTC (Reserve Officers' Training Corps) building on fire (“Kent”). Journalists flocked to the scene, and what followed was a nation wide furor over the unjust shooting (“Kent”). Local student-activist leaders were suddenly in the spotlight to share their views, and in a time of revolutionaries, the anti-war protestors took center
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In doing this, the Antiwar Movement successfully changed the entire public’s perception towards the government and war. Before the Vietnam War and The Draft, many Americans were uneducated and uninterested in the role of government and foreign policy. The Antiwar Movement forced Americans to acknowledge the major mistakes that the United States government was committing through The Draft and the Vietnam War. Through constant protest and public display of American mistakes, such as the Tet Offensive, the Antiwar Movement successfully changed the public opinion on government and influenced future decision making. After the Tet Offensive was publicly displayed, “American public opinion shifted dramatically with fully half the population opposed to escalation” (Barringer 10). While many Americans were dissatisfied with government actions and the Vietnam War, they had no voice to rally behind and remained silent. The Antiwar Movement gave the public the voice it needed and allowed American opinions to be
The Vietnam War was the first war to be broadcasted on television. The public could see what was happening on the battlefield. The media caused major changes in America. The media brought all the horrors of the war life. For the first time, people could see the action every day on the news.
It is obvious that the media played an incredibly vital role in redirecting the public opinion of the Vietnam War and also to end it. Although the American military would have eventually withdrawn from Vietnam due to its poor assistance; it is a sure fact that it would have taken a lot longer if the media didn’t have as much freedom to present information as it did. Because the media was able to provide the American public with cold hard facts and graphic imagery, the public was able to understand what was truly happening in Vietnam. The media coverage of the Tet offense, the My Lai Massacre, Kent state University, and the Pentagon Papers led to disbelief and anger in the United States Citizens. Due to the pressure on government officials to end the Vietnam War from the citizens and media the war was eventually put to an end.
People around the globe rely on the media to interpret the events that occur in the world. They get the latest information about national and global news from the radio, television, and newspapers that have correspondents waiting to tell the story. People also heavily rely on the media during times of crises like war, economic insecurity, or other global events that affects their lives. One of the most impactful times Americans depended on the media was during World War II, which illustrated the triumphs and defeats of the war and its impression it left during the post-war era. It was around this time, movie clips and radio shows geared its messages towards patriotic themes that persuaded Americans to support the war.
The majority of the country’s drama in the 1960s was a result of the Vietnam War. Many citizens weren’t happy about being at war once again, and this time, it seemed like a never ending war. As time went on the citizens grew more desperate for an end to this war. One reason that citizens were disgusted with the idea of the war was because of the Pentagon Papers. The Pentagon Papers contained private information about the Vietnam War. Daniel Ellsberg, who worked for the Department of Defense Study of the U.S. political and military involvement in the Vietnam War, got ahold of this private information. Daniel decided that what was going on wasn’t right, and we wanted the rest of the country’s citizens to know what was really going on. He copied and sent these papers to the New York Times and had them release the information for the public to read (networks). Once the citizens realized the truth about Vietnam, they were ready to start fighting for a change.
Vietnam war has been one of the most deadliest and expensive wars to date. Not only it resulted in massive casualties and financial losses, it also made a long lasting effect on American psyche. Following the withdrawal of US combat forces in 1973, majority of Americans tried to overlook what had transpired for the past decade. It served as a devastating blow to American image both domestically and abroad. Vietnam war was heavily protested, misunderstood and highly controversial, and although many question the necessity of the invasion, yet it has continued to shape the way American foreign policies and military have evolved over the years. While Vietnam was the first war to be comprehensively televised still it had a negative stigma to it that was exploited by the media and Hollywood. Soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice, willingly or unwillingly were neglected and scorned.
The Vietnam War was a brutal and bloody conflict that took the lives of more than fifty-eight thousand American soldiers and an estimated two million Vietnamese soldiers and civilians. In addition, air bombings, mortar attacks, and gun battles destroyed countless forests, farmlands, villages, and city neighborhoods in both North and South Vietnam. As the war progressed, it also took a great emotional toll on its American and Vietnamese participants as they struggled to keep themselves, their comrades, and—in the case of Vietnamese civilians—their families alive.
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The Vietnam War was the most publicized war during its era; moreover this was the most unpopular war to hit the United States. All over the country riots began to raise, anti-war movement spread all over the states begging to stop the war and chaos overseas. This truly was a failure in the political side of things. For the public, all they saw was a failed attempt in a far away country. Events such as the Tet Offensive where the North Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong established an all out attack on key locations around Vietnam, and although the Viet Cong was virtually wiped out, this still had a large affect psychologically on the troops as well as the populist back in the United States. Another atrocity that occurred during this war was the My Lai Massacre. This was the mass murder on unarmed civilians in South Vietnam during March 16,1968. Around November 1969, the world saw this and was outraged with the killings of innocent civilians prompting and giving the public more reasons to stop the war. Although the war was very unpopular, men and women were still fighting and dying for America. Heroes such as Captain John W, Ripley of Dong Ha, Medal of Honor recipients, and overall troops that gave the ultimate sacrifice were forgotten for a brief period. As unpopular as the war was, the American people should still know the stories and good that some of these troops had done for the United States.
The Vietnam War was a vicious conflict predominately between the United States and Australia against The Viet Cong and The North Vietnamese. Initially the public supported the war, however the American president of the time, Lyndon B. Johnson, exaggerated how easy and worldwide the war was to attract further support. When he called for “more flags” to be represented in South Vietnam only the Philippines, the Republic of South Korea, Thailand, Australia, and New Zealand indicated a willingness to contribute some form of military aid. By doing this “it enabled Johnson to portray the developing war as international to show it must be dealt with and gain support,” (Hastings, 2003). The outcome of the Vietnam War was ensured because the governments of the United States and Australia could not maintain their publics’ support due to the popular culture of the time. This was because much of the war was shown on television or other popular culture, so events like the Battle of Long Tan could be seen by families and people of all ages in their living rooms; this was the first time they could see how bad a war can actually be.
Due to the volatile conditions of the Vietnam War, the protestors believed that they should not be involved in a war that they cared so little about. Public opinion heavily swayed during the war as only one senator dissented from the overwhelming opinion to fight the war (Amter 45). However, as President Johnson escalated the war and the Draft increased by 25% in 1968, those youths being conscripted were infuriated (Dougan 118). Not only this, the North Vietnamese began a ruthless offensive on American soldiers by merciless attacking our bases. This resulted in US victories, but also US casualties (Dougan 116). Also, the marines stationed at the bases began to use offensive attacks to deter Viet Cong assault against the wishes of General Taylor (Karnov 443). With these new less defensive strategy, Nixon announced plans to start operations in Cambodia, and to increase the bombings overall in Southeast Asia (Dougan 180). Some missions even began t...
The Effect of Mass Media on Americans during the Vietnam War When the war initially began, Dean Rusk, US Secretary of State, pointed out that: "This was the first struggle fought on television in everybody's living room every day... whether ordinary people can sustain a war effort under that kind of daily hammering is a very large question. " The us administration, unlike most governments at war, made no official attempt to censure the reporting in the Vietnam war. Every night on the colour television people not only in America but across the planet saw pictures of dead and wounded marines. Television brought the brutality of war into the comfort of the living room. Vietnam was lost in the living rooms of America--not on the battlefields of Vietnam."
“Photographs like the one that made the front page of the most newspapers in the world in 1972- a naked South Vietnamese child just sprayed by american napalm, running down a highway toward the cameras, her arms open, screaming with pain-- probably did more to increase the public revulsion against the war than a hundred hours of televised barbarities”(476)
The main purpose of that event was to let people get different information about the violence and escapism in different areas of the world for them to know and decide their right way of living. One of the instances of violence which appeared on the screen was “NBC news report in 1968 that aired a shot of South Vietnamese General Nyuyen Ngoc Loan executing a captive on a Saigon street” (The Saylor Foundation, n.d., p. 396). In the same process, television broadcast conveyed other messages regarding diversity and politics. For instance, “After the U.S. Supreme Court sanctioned women’s right to abortion in 1972, divorce rates skyrocketed during the 1970s, as states adopted no-fault divorce laws, and the change in family dynamics was reflected on television” (The Saylor Foundation, n.d., p. 397).