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The War in Vietnam - Essay Example

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Name Instructor Course Date Why did a majority of Americans eventually turn against the war in Vietnam? When the Vietnam War started only a handful of people opposed the war. As the war progressed, the opposition grew. American troops suffered setbacks after setbacks, notably the Tet Offensive of September 1968…
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The War in Vietnam
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Download file to see previous pages Chemical weapons such as Agent Orange were used against the Vietnamese. The images from this gruesome war were relayed into the sitting room of Americans by the television and newspapers drawing public condemnation and spurring public protest. It is the cost of the war, in terms of both financial resources committed and the massive loss of human life that finally turned the tide and made a majority of Americans eventually turn against the war. President Eisenhower justified U.S involvement in Vietnam with what he called the domino effect. He argued that if Vietnam fell to communism, many states would follow. United States was interested in stopping the spread of communism in Indochina and the South East Asia. Many citizens were not worried by what was described as a simple war whose victory was guaranteed. However, when the President Johnson sent ground troops, there was a lack of a clear policy or determinable goal which would define success. America was just interested in maintaining the status quo. On the other hand, they faced communists opponent who was well coordinated and which able to appeal to the support of the people. Ho Chi Minh the leader of the Vietnamese communist was a master of blending communism with nationalism, which won him the support of the people. ...
The bone of contention of the protestors was discrimination and poverty. Yet the same government that was supposed to fight poverty was channeling the essential resources to fighting a war. As Dr Martin Luther King rightly put it “…and I knew that America would never invest the necessary funds or energies in rehabilitation of its poor so long as adventures like Vietnam continued to draw men and skills and money like some demonic, destructive suction tube. So I was increasingly compelled to see the war as an enemy of the poor and to attack it as such” (Martin Luther King, Jr., "Beyond Vietnam”). Consequently, that is why civil right movement joined the opponents of the war. They saw that the government had misplaced its priorities, spending on its military instead of the people. As reported, by 1967, civil rights leader Martin Luther King had become the country's most prominent opponent of the Vietnam War, and a staunch critic of overall U.S. foreign policy, which he deemed militaristic. In his "Beyond Vietnam" speech delivered at New York's Riverside Church on April 4, 1967 -- a year to the day before he was murdered -- King called the United States "the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today"(Martin Luther King on Vietnam). In the meantime, another class of Americans got tired of the war due to the causalities inflicted on the American troops. When President Johnson sent troops to Vietnam, Americans were assured a quick victory. However, over the course of the war was losing more and more soldiers with the promised victory nowhere in sight. The public had not anticipated this. According to lecture notes, “the war was getting more massive than America ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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