Culture of War- Vietnam By: Savannah Dinnsen

Values/ Beliefs

On March 8, 1965, 3,500 United States Marines came ashore at Da Nang as the first wave of US. The US joined the war to prevent the spread of Communism. The US spent most of the 1950s under the influence of a Red Scare which was led by the destructive anti-communist Senator Joseph McCarthy. McCarthy saw Communists everywhere in America and encouraged a witch hunt-like atmosphere of hysteria and distrust. After the war we now care about safety and keeping the citizens safe. We take the time to think about whats best for america and whether starting or joining a war will be beneficial for us.

Szczepanski, K. (2017, March 17). Why Did the US Enter the Vietnam War? Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


America fought a hi-tech war by using helicopters and B52 bombers. This tactic killed many civilians and did not stop the Vietcong guerrillas, which is the tactic Vietnam used against the US. The US forced peasants to live in Vietnam controlled places which was called strategic hamlets which reduced the influence of communists. Search and destroy patrols by the US went out to search for the enemy, destroy them and then withdraw immediately. This tactic could have worked better but the patrols were very visible and an easy target. Zippo raids was also a tactic used by the US which means to burn villages. This tactic lead to unnecessary damage.

BBC - GCSE Bitesize: Vietcong and American tactics. (n.d.). Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


9 million people served in the Vietnam War. College enrollments and campuses soared because many people did not want to serve in the military. But after the war was over the campus's died down. 25% of the US was living on farms in rural areas. Families were at risk for poverty. 32 percent of poor families in 1967 contained a head of the household that worked full-time. Another 25 percent of poor “breadwinners” worked part-time. Many poor females were head of households, because of child-rearing duties and lack of child care, could not work outside the home, leaving 11 million of the poor in 1963 in these families.

Ganzel, B. (2007). The Vietnam War . Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


Music in the 60's during the war were mainly rock with different types. The songs were written about the war and shows peoples frustration, confusion, and anger toward their sons and daughter leaving for war. Music posters could bee seen from far way with the red background and white lettering displaying words of hope. The red representing the harsh realities of war. They wanted to reveal the opinions of the citizens through music hoping the message of ending the war will get across.

Hopkins, A. E. (2012, November 01). Protest and Rock n' Roll During the Vietnam War. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


The Domino theory was the first effort to connect and justify the U.S. assistance for South Vietnamese government created by U.S. President Eisenhower. It says that if one country came under communist influence or control, its neighboring countries would soon follow in a domino effect.

Kubia. (2017, March 27). U.S. Propaganda in the Vietnam War. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


Tinker vs Des Moines a peaceful protect to halt the Vietnam war. A group of students ranging from 8 to 18 decided to wear black armbands to protest the Vietnam war. On May 12th twelve young men in New York publicly burn their draft cards to protest the war and to show resistance.

Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District. (n.d.). Oyez. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


Media was used to share good and bad news to the families in America which was usually seen on TV. The media affected peoples opinions in a negative way. Journalists began to cover stories about the war and focused on research. Radios were used to communicate in a 5 mile radius. There were about 600 accredited journalists of all nationalities in Vietnam, reporting for the US wire services, radio and television networks, and the major newspaper chains and news magazines.

Rohn, A. (2014, March 2). Media Role in The Vietnam War. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


The US put in $168 billion into the war. During 1962 – 1965 there was low inflation meaning the taxes weren't very high and economy was in favor of the people. There was almost full employment and a favorable balance of trade. This made it easy for new businesses to be created and prosper. United States had agreed to provide $3.3 billion over a five year time period to help rebuild the shattered framework of Vietnam.

Rohn, A. (2016, May 05). How did the Vietnam War affect America? Retrieved April 30, 2017, from

Government/ Foreign Policy

During the war Congress decided to end the military draft and replaced it with an all-volunteer army. They also reduce the voting age to 18. Congress also passed the War Powers Resolution; which restricted the president’s power to send American troops into war for more than 90 days without explicit consent from the Congress. The government was proactive and acted fast to make decisions. The government had to make the decision of weather to send troops or to get out. The US didn't want to become a communist country. Staff. (2009). Vietnam War History. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from

The Draft

The draft was abolished in 1973. Men aged 18-25 were required to register for Selective Service System within 30 days of their 18th birthday so a draft can be readily resumed if necessary. Two thirds of American troops were volunteered and the rest were selected. Many if the soldiers came from rural and farming communities. Men who dodged the draft were called draft dodgers. There was a draft lottery in 1969. Numbers 1 through 366 representing the days of the year including February 29th were written on slips of paper. Pieces of paper were pulled and people with the corresponding birthdays went to serve in the war.

Valentine, T. (2013, July 25). Vietnam War Draft. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from

Family Roles

Moms stayed at home to care for the children and to keep the house clean, but they also sometimes worked since the father could have been at war. 11,000 women served in the war voluntary. Fathers, sons, uncles, and nephews, depending on their age were serving in the war or still at home. This caused some families to divide. Some children where left alone and abandoned.

What Effects did Vietnam war have on families. (n.d.). Retrieved April 30, 2017, from

Re-integration into Society

Soldiers returning from the war were treated badly. Many tried to hide the fact that they served. The veterans were easy and convenient weaklings to let your anger and frustration out on.

Hibbitts, T. (2015, January 13). Why were the Vietnam War veterans treated so badly after their return to America? Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


The capitalist south Vietnamese were losing the fight against the communist north Vietnamese and Americans feared the communists would take over, so America joined the war to stop the spread of communism from going to other countries. American military was told to fire back if fought against.

Nash, T. (2012). Why Did the US Enter the Vietnam War. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from

Race Equality

President Johnson failed to realize the racial nightmare that American involvement in Vietnam would create. Discrimination was happening at home and on the battle field. Protests of the Civil Rights Movement were transferred to the war zone. Tension between black and white soldiers rose. 1 million African Americans served in the Vietnam war. Black soldiers began to see them self with the enemy due to the fact that the Vietnamese also saw them self in the colonial racist aggression. King called for black Americans to be included in the American Dream.

Gallagher, B. (2014, February 20). The Vietnam War and the Civil Rights movement. Retrieved April 30, 2017, from


Created with images by young shanahan - "Vietman War Memorial."

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