Vietnam War  

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We gotta get out of this place!
If it's the last thing we ever do ...
We gotta get out of this place,
'cause girl, there's a better life ... for me and you

--"We Gotta Get out of This Place" (1965)

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The Vietnam War (1959 - 1975) was a war in Vietnam, a proxy war between the United States and the Soviet Union.

To a degree, the war may be viewed as a Cold War conflict between the U.S., its allies, and South Vietnam on one side, and the Soviet Union, its allies, the People's Republic of China, and North Vietnam on the other. Others, however, viewed the conflict as a civil war between communist and non-communist Vietnamese factions.

In popular culture

The Vietnam War has been featured extensively in television, film, video games, and literature in the participant countries. In American popular culture, the "Crazy Vietnam Veteran", who was suffering from Posttraumatic stress disorder, became a common stock character after the war.

One of the first major films based on the Vietnam War was John Wayne's pro-war film, The Green Berets (1968). Further cinematic representations were released during the 1970s and 1980s, including Michael Cimino's The Deer Hunter (1978), Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now (1979), Oliver Stone's Platoon (1986) – based on his service in the U.S. Military during the Vietnam War, Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket (1987), Hamburger Hill (1987), and Casualties of War (1989). Later films would include We Were Soldiers (2002) and Rescue Dawn (2007).

The war also influenced a generation of musicians and songwriters in Vietnam and the United States, both anti-war and pro/anti-communist. The band Country Joe and the Fish recorded "I-Feel-Like-I'm-Fixin'-To-Die Rag" / The "Fish" Cheer in 1965, and it became one of the most influential anti-Vietnam protest anthems.

Opposition

Opposition to U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War began slowly and in small numbers in 1964 on various college campuses in the United States. This happened during a time of unprecedented student activism reinforced in numbers by the demographically significant baby boomers, but grew to include a wide and varied cross-section of Americans from all walks of life. The growing opposition to the Vietnam War was also partly attributed to greater access to uncensored information compared with previous wars and extensive television media coverage of what, ultimately, became America's longest combat war. Likewise, a system of conscription that provided exemptions and deferments more easily claimed by middle and upper class registrants - and thus inducted disproportionate numbers of poor, working-class, and minority registrants - drove much of the protest. By the end of 1967, as the war ground on with no end in sight, public opinion polls showed a majority of Americans were opposed the war and wanted it to end.

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See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Vietnam War" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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