The outcomes of the bloody, horrible, long-lasting war in Vietnam are familiar for every intelligent individual, within and beyond the borders of the US. A powerful democracy intruded into the war that was doomed to defeat for all Europeans and Americans coming to the lands of Vietnam; thousands of people were dead and thousands more returned home crippled. They would never again get calmness and harmony of peaceful lives because of blood-freezing recollections of the Vietnamese’ cruelty and inhumane atrocities they conducted during the warfare.
The Vietnam War surely had an enormous set of outcomes, both on the social, economic and psychological level for Americans who never came across such inhumanity and blood-thirst. In comparison with the Pearl Harbor tragedy that marked the major part of victims during the Second World War, the Vietnam War represented a true massacre for inexperienced soldiers who came to the unknown land to perish for unknown goals. The US society that has just experienced the Cold war against the Soviet Union that was marked by strong ideology imposition, absence of any contacts and race of weapons was simply unable to perceive the necessity of the next war. More than that, the unlawful intrusion into the life of a newly-born Asian country was considered immoral by a certain part of the society.
From the 1964 announcement of Lyndon Johnson in favor of help to France in the war against the Vietnamese and their leader Ho Chi Minh marked the beginning of the years of horror, grief and warfare for the whole US society; it was fiercely conducted on the territory of the US, in the jungles of Vietnam and in the heart and mind of every separate citizen who had to understand whether he or she was for or against the invasion. The 1965 beginning of military actions brought about the irreversible consequences for the whole US nation that remain in the hearts of former soldiers, generals or journalists who witnessed the atrocities at the Vietnamese land, and in the hearts of parents, friends and spouses of those who did not return from the fatal jungles. The scope of influence of the Vietnam Era is very broad, so each particular sphere of the US life that was affected by it should be discussed separately.
Social and Cultural Changes Brought by the Vietnam Era.
It is impossible to exaggerate the changes caused by the Vietnam War on the social and cultural life of the US population. The first step to the social protest was made when through the introduction of the draft system calling young men who still did not get proper education and did not become mature enough to go to war. They went and died at the war their country did not need, so soon came the time when the society of the US recognized absence of necessity to burn and destroy the land which they initially wanted to protect, together with killing hundreds of Americans who did not even know why they were sent to Vietnam and what they fought for (Davidson et al., 2008).
The recognition of this fallacy led to the anti-war protests that had two aims: to stop bombing and destruction of Vietnam (there was a tremendous resonance on cruelties and massacre conducted by both sides on its territory) and to stop sending innocent young men to death without any visible reasons and purposes. The protests gained force and scale together with the war flow and the recognition of dramatic economic consequences of the war in Vietnam – inflation, further on stagflation and finally the energy crisis of 1973 resolved by Henry Kissinger ruined the perception of political power in the US (Davidson et al, 2008). The events that followed straight after the beginning of the war showed multiple defects in the policy of Johnson and Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, which marked a huge social process of disenchantment in the political power (Davidson et al., 2008).