The Impact Of The Vietnam War On Veterans

1773 words - 7 pages

How did a Vietnam soldier's life change during and after the war. Society had a lot of different views regarding the soldiers and the war. When coming home veterans faced many distinct challenges. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial helped to heal the nation. The Vietnam War had a major impact on the United States and the soldiers who fought in it.
The Vietnam War was a violent and costly war that needed many men to fight for its cause. These men are now known as the Vietnam veterans. Numerous veterans who fought in the war were injured or lost a comrade during battle. These soldiers fought to protect the United States and its people while risking their own lives. A lot of these brave men were either killed or injured and did not gain the respect they deserved until after the war. The Vietnam soldiers felt that they had a responsibility to protect their country and its people.
During the Vietnam War time period, many men were off living their own life, but that all ended when they got drafted into the war. These draftees had to quit school, leave their family behind, and risk being killed or injured in a war they didn’t want to fight in. The drafting also caused a lot more anti-war movements to occur (Cayton, Perry, Reed, and Winkler [FIND]). These anti-war movements also harassed the soldiers when they came home.
Life at Vietnam had numerous challenges for the soldiers who were there. Drugs and alcohol were a way for soldiers to forget about the horrors of war and were also used as a pass time . Multiple times soldiers were punished for disobedience or not saluting (Hochgesang). For countless soldiers the only thing that kept them going was the fear of being killed. There were many disease at the camps where soldiers were stationed. Skin disease and Malaria were the two most common diseases in most camps (Vietnam War Health). Diseases, drugs, alcohol, and the harsh living conditions often left soldiers longing for home.
Veterans coming home had to face many different situations. Most veterans who came home did not receive the welcome they had deserved. Some veterans were homeless and unemployed after coming home. An organization called the Vietnam Veterans against the War or the VVAW tried to help the soldiers coming home. The organization allowed veterans to talk about their experiences to them and also tried to get the veterans to talk to the public (Rivers 646-648). The VVAW helped the veterans throughout the war. Many veterans who came home had emotional trauma or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The United States citizens did not want to remember the war or the brave men who fought in it (Rivers 646-647). Very few people cared about Vietnam or the soldiers during the war because of the negative views toward the soldiers and the war.
There were two main views toward the soldiers in Vietnam; a negative view and a positive view. The negative view seemed to be the most popular attitude towards them. The negative outlook...

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