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Conflict with Two Faces: The War in Vietnam

The conflict in Vietnam has become one of the most analyzed and controversial events in American history.  In its early years, conquest in Southeast Asia was supported with patriotic fervor. Many county youths enthusiastically enlisted saying, “It was the easiest decision of my life.” By the late sixties and early seventies, the tide of public opinion had turned away. What caused these changes and how did the reversal affect or reflect the views of the public? Relying upon the experiences of men and women from Cumberland County we will look at the technology and culture of the war while exploring reactions from enlistees, draftees, hippies, and squares to the Tet Offensive, military strategy, media coverage, and peace rallies. These voices may shed light not only on the past but on how memory of historic events is shaped and remembered in popular culture.





Essential Questions:

How did the United States justify nonmilitary and military actions in Vietnam?
How did the American people respond?
Why was Tet considered to be the turning point of American involvement in Vietnam?
What role did the media play in the Vietnam War?
How was the Vietnam War viewed at home?
How and why did countercultures develop during the Vietnam War?
How did the conflict end?
What was the aftermath of the war?
How is history interpreted to relate the past to the present?
How do the concepts of family, education, leisure, government, economics, religion, and communication define a culture?

History Standards:
  8.1 A,B,C,D    8.2.12 A,B    8.3.12 A,B,C,D    8.4.12 B,D 

Reading Standards: 1.1.5.A,G   1.2.A   1.3.A,F   1.6.A,B,D,E