Opposition to United States involvement in the Vietnam War

Opposition to United States involvement in the Vietnam War began with demonstrations in 1964 against the escalating role of the United States in the Vietnam War and grew into a broad social movement over the ensuing several years. This movement informed and helped shape the vigorous and polarizing debate, primarily in the United States, during the second half of the 1960s and early 1970s on how to end the war.

Opposition to United States involvement in the Vietnam War
Part of the Counterculture of the 1960s
and Vietnam War
Anti-war protest at the Pentagon, 1967
Date1964–1973
Caused byAmerican involvement in Vietnam
Goals
Resulted in

Many in the peace movement within the United States were children, mothers, or anti-establishment hippies. Opposition grew with participation by the African-American civil rights, second-wave feminist movements, Chicano Movements, and sectors of organized labor. Additional involvement came from many other groups, including educators, clergy, academics, journalists, lawyers, physicians – such as Benjamin Spock – and military veterans.

Their actions consisted mainly of peaceful, nonviolent events; few events were deliberately provocative and violent. In some cases, police used violent tactics against peaceful demonstrators. By 1967, according to Gallup polls, an increasing majority of Americans considered military involvement in Vietnam to be a mistake, echoed decades later by the then-head of American war planning, former Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara.[1]


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