The Pros And Cons Of The Vietnam War

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As history shows, every war comes some sort of public opposition. There will always be pro-war and anti-war men and women across the country. In World War I, there was a major rift between the two sides. Not until civilians were being killed did President Wilson give in and join the war. Similarly, not everyone wanted to get into World War II until the Pearl Harbor bombings. The Vietnam War went differently than the previous two wars. This time, there was a huge majority public opposition to President Johnson and President Nixon’s decisions. The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, the Tet Offensive, and the Kent State Shootings all undermined American public support for the Vietnam War and impacted government decisions, ultimately bringing the Vietnam…show more content…
1968, the year of the Tet Offensive, was the peak of US involvement in the war. The Tet Offensive was a series of battles between the Communist and Anti-Communist forces in South Vietnam. Although it was a victory for the United States, public support decreased due to the number of casualties and struggle to win the offensive. President Johnson, in his comments on the Tet Offensive, bashed the public opinion (doc 4). He pointed out that in terms of numbers, the US and South Vietnamese had a huge victory. His point of view was simply from a statistical standpoint. But the public saw that many Vietnamese civilians were harmed and affected by the war. The Tet Offensive was the beginning of the decline of public support for the war, as well as decline in US involvement in the war due to the public opinion. In addition, President Johnson was losing support because of his stubborn foreign policy outlook. Robert Kennedy, the Senator of New York, was contemplating a presidential run to oppose the President 's Vietnam policy. In addition, Johnson was losing democratic primaries to Senator Eugene McCarthy, who also opposed Johnson’s Vietnam policy. The public support for McCarthy showed that the American people were now against participation in the Vietnam War. Soon after the Tet Offensive, President Johnson announced a slow decrease in bombings of North Vietnam, started to…show more content…
The end of the Vietnam War was not the end of the issues that the war brought up within the United States. The 1970s became a period of violence and distrust of government. The Watergate Scandal was the peak of the speculation of government and ended in the impeachment of President Nixon. This mistrust has spilled into the current state of American society and politics, where the people constantly feel they are being cheated and lied to by government officials. In addition, there is a huge separation between those who are for or against government intervention in other countries. Public support for operations in the Middle East is divided, much like during the middle years of the Vietnam War. One can only speculate about whether the public and government will rally around one stance like Americans did during the Vietnam

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