City Yoga Lessons

The ruthless military tactics American soldiers practiced during the Vietnam War created a negative public opinion about conflict. Americans were afraid to jump into a war knowing family members would die. After already predicting family members would lose their life, people were devastated watching deaths on television. Society grew upset about the violence overseas and anti-war demonstrations began to occur over the nation. In addition, the United States military dropped the deadly chemical, Agent Orange all over Vietnam and the public was upset when the Pentagon Papers were leaked revealing war efforts were increasing instead of decreasing. Even though Nixon terminated America’s participation in the war, Americans were unsupportive of the terms he had agreed to. Due to the cease fire, America was no longer allowed to aid South Vietnam. Americans showed this hatred for war not only with anti-war demonstrations but also by treating the veterans poorly. Overall, it is easily shown how Americans opposed war efforts.


Prior to the beginning of the war, most people were opposed to fighting in Vietnam. America had been in the two world wars less than a century before the Vietnam War and had participated in the Korean War just a few years prior. People were not prepared for more conflict because lives would be lost and family members would die. In addition, not all men were willing to fight and America used the draft to force more soldiers. Many men avoided the draft either legally, by being physically disabled, or illegally, by fleeing to Canada. Due to previous involvements in conflict and risk of loss, Americans disapproved joining another war.


With society already disapproving of the war, airing war scenes on served as a negative impact on the mindset. Vietnam was known as the first “living room” war because families had access to the fighting every night. Reporters such as Morley Safer flew to Vietnam for footage of battles. Safer reported one incident in Cam Ne where Marines lit roofs on fire which killed one boy and wounded four villagers. People were outraged after hearing Safer’s report, which illustrated how television influenced propaganda to end conflict overseas. Since civilians had the ability watch war scenes on television, media portrayed all conflict as unacceptable, causing contradictions about war efforts.


As a result of the scenes on television, anti-war movements started across the country. People loathed being in conflict again and expressed their feelings through demonstrations. The demonstrations started off as a way to peacefully express public opinion. On October 21, 1967, one hundred thousand protesters gathered at the Lincoln Memorial. Some marched to the Pentagon where U. S. Marshals arrested hundreds of the protesters. Demonstrations became more violent such as the rally at Kentucky State University. On May 4, 1970, there was a rally organized at Kentucky State University to display societal hatred for conflict. The Ohio National Guard fired into the crowd killing four innocent people. To put it briefly, people participated in demonstrations as a way to express their feelings about violence.


Despite the protests that were occurring, the United States military dropped about nineteen million gallons of Agent Orange over Vietnam in order to kill vegetation. Americans were against Agent Orange for it could kill on contact. Agent Orange had some upsides for the United States such as killing Viet Cong although it did not make up for the lives that were lost by citizens. The effects were horrendous; around four hundred thousand Vietnamese died from exposure to Agent Orange. Many United States veterans were also affected, and returned home with symptoms such as rashes. For this reason, people were outraged by the use of Agent Orange.


On top of the use of Agent Orange, people were infuriated about the Pentagon Papers. The Pentagon Papers revealed that President Harry Truman aided France with militia[ES1] when France was fighting against the communist Viet Cong. President Lyndon Johnson also lied to the public claiming he would reduce war efforts, when in reality, he escalated them. Truman and Lyndon deceived the people. In the court case of the United States Government versus New York Times, New York Times won due the first amendment for freedom of press. [ES2] Therefore, American citizens were angered by the Pentagon Papers and the knowledge that they had been mislead by their leaders.


Following the Pentagon Papers being leaked in 1971, Richard Nixon signed the ceasefire in 1973 in the favor of North Vietnam. Nixon was desperate for a way to cease conflict. Nixon signed to lousy terms where the United States had to withdraw all troops from South Vietnam. While the United States left South Vietnam, North Vietnam was allowed to invade South Vietnam and continue fighting. Even though the United States joined the war to aid South Vietnam, the United States pulled out for its own sake. Due to the conditions on the peace treaty, America was unable to retrieve any prisoners of war or any person missing in action. The conditions of the ceasefire upset citizens for the reason that many family members were lost and had no way to return back to the states. Due to desperation to terminate the war, Nixon signed the peace treaty with atrocious terms on America’s behalf.


By signing the ceasefire, Richard Nixon agreed to withdraw all American soldiers from South Vietnam, leaving South Vietnam to defend itself. Nixon’s policy of Vietnamization was to boost South Vietnam’s military to resist North Vietnam, while reducing the number of American troops. Even though Vietnamization had good intentions, once America’s support terminated, South Vietnam knew their soldiers could not defeat the Viet Cong and many attempted to escape to other countries. Since the United States pulled out of the war, the attempt to contain communism failed, which was the goal of aiding South Vietnam. American citizens were furious that North Vietnam won the war. As a result of retreating back to the states, North Vietnam was capable of defeating South Vietnam, spreading communism throughout all of Vietnam.


After returning from South Vietnam, veterans were treated unfairly. In recent years, when soldiers return home, families are holding signs waiting to welcome them. In the 1970s, society’s view of veterans was that anyone who participated in the Vietnam War was a “baby killer.” The majority of American’s mistreated soldiers when they returned from war. Anti-war activists gathered at airports, with nonviolence posters yelling at troops leaving the airplane. Terry Tople, a Vietnam War veteran, got off the airplane, walking into a crowd throwing rotten food at a group of wounded warriors. [ES3] In addition to throwing food, some restaurants refused to serve veterans. Most soldiers discarded their uniforms to avoid any confrontation with anti-war demonstrators. All in all, the public opinion was that veterans were evil and should be victimized.[ES4]


On the whole, Americans were discouraging violence in Vietnam. Since society opposed bloodshed, civilians discriminated against the Vietnam War veterans. President Richard Nixon signed the ceasefire which many citizens did not agree to, because the terms were in favor of North Vietnam. Americans were appalled by Pentagon Papers, knowing their presidents, who were now known as untrustworthy, deceived them. War efforts were more extreme than the society was aware of and Agent Orange proved their lack of knowledge. Families had the ability to watch deadly war scenes on television every night. Since the United States was practicing ruthless military tactics, anti-war demonstrations started in opposition to violence. Unlike other wars. Americans despised the United States military due to the merciless tactics they used.

[ES1]Does this sound better than military

[ES2]How can it relate to support the mindset of the people

[ES3]Is it better with or without the specific example

[ES4]is this a good word