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The Vietnam War Essay

2411 words - 10 pages

The Vietnam War was a war between the Capitalist United States and the Communist North Vietnamese army. This war started in 1964 and it ended in 1975, when the US withdrew its soldiers. The US joined the war to stop the spreading of Communism, because they didn’'t want Russia to gain more allies, as they had been in a cold war with them for years.
In my opinion, an event is significant if it is still remembered today, meaning that it is used in films, written about in books, and when people watch these films or read books, it could raise issues in their mind which also makes an event significant. If it was really important at the time, like all the soldiers died, which was only important to the US and Vietnam at the time but as for the entire country in the long term it was not important. Significance is more than just how important an event is. It describes the impact of the event on other countries involved as well as the world as a whole. In my essay I will explain how far I agree with the statement, by looking at the ways the Vietnam War was significant in both the long and short term.

A lot of people believe that the Vietnam War was mostly significant in the short term, it had an impact and effects on a number of different people in many countries.
In the USA for example, 58,000 US soldiers died in the Vietnam War and about 300,000 were injured. In the short term this meant that people had their families broken up and that some of the returning soldiers with serious injuries could no longer serve in the army or work. This may not have been the case for ever but certainly affected their lives in the years immediately after the war. While this certainly had an impact in the short term, I do not think it was significant in the long term as the number of people injured or dead isn’'t a big number compared to the full population of the United States of America, which was about 300 million at the time.
At the time of the war, a lot of people disagreed with it because many people died and got injured but the USA wasn’t making any progress, just throwing money out the window and sending soldiers to death. This led to protests all over the USA, where hundreds of thousands of people turned up to show that they were against the war and didn’'t support the US anymore. This is shown in Source 1 which is a picture of the anti-war protests in Washington. The biggest protests were in Washington at the White House, where more than 1 million people showed up. This definitely had a huge impact in the short term as the Government and the president didn’t want to be unpopular, and actually changed their policy towards Vietnam, partially as a result of the protests I don’t think it had a big impact the long term as people don’t protest about the Vietnam War anymore, or talk about it as much as they did at the time of the war. This shows that the significance of the war has decreased over time in the USA.
The war with Vietnam cost the US about 130...

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