Desktop version

Home arrow History

War protests

With the draft hanging over their heads, hundreds of thousands of students marched in protest demonstrations against the war. Demonstrators showed up wherever President Johnson tried to speak, chanting "Hey, hey, LBJ, how many kids did you kill today?" They ignored his attempts to change the subject to the War on Poverty and instead shouted against the real war in Vietnam that was killing the people of their generation at a rate of more than 20 deaths a day.

LBJ's Vietnam was eating up LBJ's Great Society. In violation of the law, Johnson used the CIA and the FBI to spy on antiwar protestors.


Question: How did the war in Vietnam affect LBJ's domestic Great Society program?

Answer: By taking money and political support, the war made Johnson's Great Society program less effective.

The Tet offensive

Believers in the war kept saying that they could see the light at the end of the tunnel; they believed that the U.S. had almost won. The light at the end of the tunnel went out during the huge Vietnamese Tet offensive in early 1968.

Although the U.S. was hoping that the rebels were almost beaten, the Communists launched a simultaneous attack on most major South Vietnamese cities beginning during the Vietnamese New Year's holiday called Tet. The rebels penetrated the South Vietnamese capital of Saigon; a few of them even made it to the grounds of the U.S. embassy .

Although the rebels were pushed back and suffered heavy losses, the very fact that they could mount such a wide attack destroyed the confidence of both the American people and their politicians, including President Johnson. The long road to a negotiated peace began.


Question: What was the Tet offensive?

Answer: Widespread rebel attacks during the Vietnamese New Year that led to increased U.S. opposition to the war.

< Prev   CONTENTS   Next >

Related topics