The War that Changed America Forever

explanatory Essay
931 words
931 words

The Vietnam War was a war that changed America forever. It was a long, costly war between Communist North Vietnam, with the aid of the Viet Cong, and Capitalist South Vietnam, aided by the United States. It was a controversial war at the time, but today, it remains embedded in America's history as a war to be remembered.
The reasons for the Vietnam War took place long before the war even began. For years, the Vietnamese had been under French colonial rule. But, when Communist revolutionary Ho Chi Minh came back to Vietnam, he established a group called the Viet Minh, the goal of which was to remove all French occupation from Vietnam. So, the fighting started, and Ho Chi Minh tried to get the US to support them. But, being true to their policies of containment, the US started supporting France. The United States' thoughts about Communism's potential growth can be summed up in one basic idea: the Domino Theory. This theory stated that if one country in a region fell to Communism, the surrounding countries would soon follow. Because of this, the US committed to keeping the North Vietnamese contained once the French withdrew from Vietnam. But, the thing that really pushed the US into sending troops into Vietnam was the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. On August 2nd and 4th, 1964, the North Vietnamese fired upon two US ships in the Gulf of Tonkin. Following this, Congress approved the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution on August 7, 1964, which gave the president authority to send military troops into Vietnam without declaring war. So, President Johnson sent troops into Vietnam, which had already erupted into civil war, to aid the South Vietnamese.
After Vietnam erupted into civil war, both sides started employing clever tactics and new t...

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...ommunism, Laos and Cambodia did the same. When North Vietnam took Saigon, it was renamed Ho Chi Minh City. And, most importantly, the loss of the Vietnam War shattered the feeling of American invincibility.
The Vietnam War has had its effects on America, both good and bad. We can ridicule it, we can deny it, we can say it was for the best, we can say we shouldn't have even gotten involved, but the one thing we can't do is ignore it. Because it's become an unforgettable part of history, and we all need to remember Vietnam.

Vietnam war. (n.d.). Retrieved 5 14, 2014, from
Vietnam War. (n.d.). Retrieved 5 14, 2014, from
Vietnam War. (n.d.). Retrieved 5 14, 2014, from

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that the vietnam war changed america forever. it was a long, costly war between communist north vietnam and capitalist south vietnam, aided by the united states.
  • Explains the reasons for the vietnam war, which began long before the war began. the us committed to keeping the north vietnamese contained once the french withdrew from vietnam.
  • Explains how the viet cong, a guerilla fighting group disguised as south vietnamese citizens, was difficult for the us to find, let alone fight, and developed napalm and agent orange.
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