American History Research Paper: Was Entering The Vietnam War A Good Idea?
Going to Vietnam was a good thing for the U.S. It is, however, the most hated and protested war in all of U.S. history. However, it was a needed war. We went to Vietnam to stop the spread of communism, and for the most part succeeded. Even thought it was the most military drafts ever given out, and it caused massive inflation in the U.S. The Vietnam War was an effect of the Cold War, which was an arms build up between Russia and the U.S. Then Russia tried to turn Vietnam into a communist country, so the U.S. intervened. In the following you will see that entering the Vietnam War was a good thing and that otherwise communism would still be very popular today, even though it was the only war the U.S. ever lost.
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The first reason that going to Vietnam was a good idea was that we needed to stop the spread of communism (Brownell 12). It was a growing threat, and needed to be stopped as quickly as possible (Brownell 87). We entered the war, and for the support of France and to stop communism in its steps (Welch 2). With little success in both areas at first, in the long run we were successful in our main goals (Welch 7). The spread of communism started the Vietnam War and The Korean War. Both wars had the same objective, stopping the spread of communism (O’Brien 1). We succeeded in both wars with this idea, but we pulled our troops out of Vietnam towards the end of the war (Brownell 5).
The war officially ended in 1974 when the North Vietnamese took control of South Vietnam and made the entire country communist governed (Brownell 5). They may have been communist in the end, but much of the surrounding countries remained democratic (Welch 98). So we lost the country of Vietnam to communism, but gained many of the surrounding countries (O’Brien 2). So we went in to stop the spread of communism, and we did stop it from spreading, it just got Vietnam in the end (Welch 7).
Another reason entering The Vietnam War was a good idea was that we gained the support of the French. They initially started the war, but we entered and helped them out (O’Brien 3). We entered the war with the intention of stopping the spread of communism, and we gained the support of the French. In doing this we gained a little help from them in future wars (O’Brien 3). We also gained some financial gain from the war. With people buying war bonds and the draft, we didn’t need to worry too much about money (Welch 12). Plus, with the withdraw of our soldiers we had an excess amount of money (Welch 13). So we gained the support of the French and got some money, but unfortunately it was at the cost of 58,168 U.S. troops (Maraniss 307).
A huge reason that entering The Vietnam War was that it really helped boost our economy as a country. When we entered we had a mad rush of people buying war bonds to help support our troops and the war cause (Maraniss 256). Then when we pulled out of the war, we actually didn’t spend all our money on the war. So we gained some money. Unfortunately a lot of the money went missing with President Nixon resigning (Brownell 56). Some speculate that he took it and spent in on more private things, while others claim he hid it away if he was ever run out of the country. The ideas continue into the improbable all the way to the just insane (Marraniss 25).
Yet it is still very curious as to where all that money disappeared to. Many consider it one of the main reasons President Nixon resigned before congress could impeach him. However, it was nothing compared to what was left (Brownell 56). Most of the money went to covering up and paying off the officers involved it the drug trade that took place during The Vietnam War. Instead of it rightfully going back to the people, or the troops, it went right into the pockets of traitors and lying drug junkies. Yet what remained mostly went into repairing roads of all things. So we traded a war for not getting caught up in another one of the government’s scandals, and nice roads (Brownell 57).
One of the reasons that entering The Vietnam War was a bad idea is that it is the most protested war in all of U.S. history (Brownell 12). We had more people voice there protests against The Vietnam War than ever in U.S. history, even more than The Korean War (Brownell 13). Another reason is that we lost more men in The Vietnam War than in any other war, except The Civil War. It was mostly protest because of the draft (Welch 26). The draft was 1,728,344 people, but only 17,000 were accounted for in deaths (Brownell 1).
It was so protested that many of the people who were drafted left the country and fled to Canada. The people who didn’t go after the war were pardoned (O’Brien 5). The last reason that it was a bad idea entering The Vietnam was that it was the only war we ever lost. However, many people believe it was a good thing because it showed the world that America could infact lose a war, that we weren’t all powerful (Welch 10).
With the facts given, it is obvious that going to Vietnam was a good thing for the U.S. Even it was the most protested and hated war in all of U.S. history; we still accomplished the main goal of what we went there for. This was to stop the spread of communism. We also got, sort of, a head start in The Cold War. Even though the Vietnam War was technically caused by the beginning of The Cold War. Not to mention that it was the most military drafts ever give. However, you can’t really deny the fact that it was a necessary war, that without it, communism would be still popular today.