Men Turned to Beasts The vietnam war

Beliefs

The beliefs at first were to help the Southern Vietnamese defend themselves and stay separated from the Northern half of the peninsula, much like Korea. However closer to the end we had developed the mentality that the war was a useless issue that was causing the death many Americans and was only making politicians richer from their dead family. Americans at the time had a very strong hatred for communism. This is why at first we thought it was necessary to help South Vietnam, because the North was backed by communist countries, like China and the U.S.S.R.

Tactics

The tactics that were widely adopted for fighting the DRV's use of guerrilla warfare was to constantly bomb and do wide sweeps of areas in hopes of clearing out large numbers of enemy soldiers. These tactics were not very effective in fighting against guerrilla warfare, but they were the most effective we had available at the time.

The Homefront

Vietnam was the first "televised war" in history. With the war being shown on tv to the people at home, people could judge the war for what they thought. This didn't help with the fact that the home front was against the draft and the war. This caused a America to have a very divided opinion on the war, many wanted it to end. News coverage of the war was aired every night and often showed many different squads that fought in Vietnam. The overall viewpoint of the war from the homefront was that the war needed to be put to an end.

Music

It was common for people to crowd around the radio and listen to war effort and songs that many could relate to.

The music that was widely listened to during the war was classic rock. Some of the more well known figures in the genre were The Rolling Stones, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Who, Pink Floyd, and Aerosmith. These artists and many others would be played over the radio and were widely listened to. Many soldiers would use vehicles that were outfitted to play music in order to be more at ease with their current situation.

Propaganda

In post World War 2 America the biggest fear in the American citizens was Communism. This made it easy for the government to release propaganda on fighting communism when North Vietnam was being supported by the Communist Bloc.

Protests

Large protests were organized by draft dodgers and veterans with the hopes of stoping this corrupted war effort.

As the war dragged on many more people began to join in the protests against the war. Many people at home saw the war as an excuse to make the already rich politicians richer and the drastically increasing death count never helped the people in support of the war. The overall war effort was seen as very corrupted, with some major political figures having some involvement in the supply of military gear.

The Media

One of the many types of media used to show the war in the U.S.

Many types of media was used to bring news to the home front about the war. Many people read the morning paper and such popular magazines such as LIFE. These sources of news and media were used to spread the word of how the war was progressing. While paper based sources of media was very common, even more common was electronic sources, such as television and radio. Many families owned a radio and television in the U.S at the time and would leave it to play around the house throughout the day. This lead to many people hearing the news while they ate dinner with one another.

Economics

The Vietnam War was the most expensive war in the Cold War era. The amount that was spent by the Government to cover the cost of the whole war and aftermath was equivalent to one trillion dollars in 2003. This means that many people had to pay higher taxes in order to support the spending of the Government. With the constant destruction of military vehicles it lead the the Government to spend millions upon millions of dollars on the construction of more vehicles to send over to Vietnam.

Foreign affairs

The American Government and the more communist leaning countries were always at each other's necks hoping to keep one upping each other to see who was more superior in the world. This is why we never had good relations with the U.S.S.R, Communist China, and North Korea. With the large hatred between powers it lead to America fighting in Vietnam to "Stop the spreading of the communist threat" and go to war with North Vietnam. We did have a good relationship with the UN and did lead to some help with funding from other countries.

The Draft

The infamous Draft that was put in use during the Vietnam War was highly controversial. The Draft was put in to recruit men to fight in the army in Vietnam, it was a way for the military to keep a constant flow of recruits joining in the fighting. The Draft did have rules that had to be followed, only men 18 and older could be drafted, only one man from each family if there are multiple sons, and if the person drafted wants to pursue a higher education they are free to and their military service will be delayed until they are done with school.

Family Roles

The typical American family at the start of the war

The common family roles at the start of the war were the wife was at home to cook, clean, raise the kids, and do anything that the husband doesn't have time for. The husband's role in the house make the money to support the family and any hard labor that the eldest son can't do on his own. However as the war continued the roles started to change. As more and more men were drafted for war it caused more women to join the workforce in order to support their families while their family was at war.

Reintegration into Society

After the war it became extremely hard for veterans to find corporate jobs in America. Many veterans had physical injuries such as a missing limb, while almost all had be mentally scarred from the war. The biggest mental injury that occurred from the war was PTSD. Due to these physical and mental injuries it made it extremely difficult to find work. These vets had bad financial issues due to being jobless, it also didn't help when they needed to pay for medical expenses with little to no money.

Purpose

The purpose of the war was to help defend South Vietnam from the North. The North was supported by China, which was communist. Many Americans saw communism as the enemy of the way we live in America. Because of this many people saw the war as not only the defense of South Vietnam, but to also stop the spreading of communism.

Race and Equality

During the war race was a big issue as the civil rights movement was still going on. Many groups came together to protest the war, which united many citizens. The biggest group protesting the war for racial inequalities was The Black Panthers Party. The Black Panthers was a group of African American citizens who would get together and patrol low income neighborhoods and feed poor kids. The also organized rallies and protests against race, pay inequalities, and the war. Many would get arrested because racial prejudice was still very common.

Created By
Student Connor Bradley
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Credits:

Created with images by Marine Corps Archives & Special Collections - "UH-1E Helicopters at Fire Support Base Cunningham, 1969" • manhhai - "Paul Doumer bridge after the Aug. 12, 1967 strike. (U.S. Air Force photo) - Cầu Long Biên sau cuộc không kích ngày 12/8/1967" • DonkeyHotey - "Uncle Sam I Want You - Poster" • manhhai - "1971 Vietnamese Troops atop Tank Headed to Chup Plantation" • Infrogmation - "Uncle Sam is Broke"

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