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Facts About The Vietnam War Essay

1761 words - 8 pages

The longest recorded and arguably one of the most controversial wars in American history is the Vietnam war. In 1959, the communist government of North Vietnam had devised a guerrilla campaign in democratic South Vietnam. The government of North Vietnam had the goal of uniting both countries under a communist reign. The United States quickly became an ally with South Vietnam because they feared the spread of communism. The aftermath of the war resulted in sixty thousand American deaths and two million Vietnamese deaths. Today many people question the necessity and rationality of the war. It is still debated today if the American force in Vietnam was a blunder or a noble cause.
As the war ...view middle of the document...

The movement contained a diverse number of united people with political, religious and social backgrounds. Hundreds of thousands of people gathered to express their ideas and unreservedly applied their freedom of speech. The activists demanded the urgent disengagement of American troops in Vietnam.
Today the anti-war movement is seen as the most successful movement in America because it was capable of rallying countless Americans to revolutionize the government's actions in the war. Contributing to the movements success, was the increasing amount of anti-war music which raised awareness of the war and expressed its distain of the casualties that followed the Vietnam war. Anti-war musicians assisted in the success of the anti-war movement by creating lyrics with strong emotional messages, inspired negatively by the actions of the government and casualties of the Vietnam war. This included and was not limited to the Kent State University Shootings, the draft and the napalm bombings. The anti-war songs informed people of the calamity of the war and triggered an urgency among citizens to cease the war against Vietnam.
The draft was resented by college students across America. The age of a serving solider in Vietnam was nineteen, which was seven years younger than the soldiers that fought in World War II. The combat troops were an uneven percentage of less educated Americans. It is estimated that eighty percent of the ground troops came from "lower classes". African American and Latino males were often put into combat more often than white Americans. As the number of soldiers increased, the peace movement grew. Televisions changed the minds of millions of Americans as they watched hundreds of soldiers leave Vietnam in body bags.
During the escalation of military presence in Vietnam, singers like Joan Baez joined the protest. A few years later the anti-war movement gathered together for the March on Washington and the pentagon. Folk-singers and rock stars joined the rallies and produced songs that recreated the intense feelings of young civilians that faced serving in Vietnam through the Selective Service draft. "I Feel Like I'm Fixing to Die Rag", by Country Joe and the Fish expresses bitter feelings towards the draft. This song stirred up a variety of emotions among people towards the draft. It sent a powerful message conveying that sending inexperienced young adults to fight experienced guerrillas on their home ground was immoral and soldiers had a high risk of dying in battle. "I Feel Like I'm Fixing to Die Rag", conveyed the message to millions that politicians and US military were to blame for the Vietnam War. It also expressed the thoughts of civilians being trapped by the draft and being forced to go to war. Country Joe and the Fish's song gathered hundreds of thousands at the Woodstock Music Festival and their song was used as a method of uniting US citizens with the emotional lyrics of their song. It was a way of uniting a large...

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