Operation Rolling Thunder: The Vietnam War

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Essay #3
Throughout the history of the United States, there have been few eras filled with as much unique culture, opinions, and passion as the time of the Vietnam War. Though there have been many wars and surmises since American gained its independence from Great Britain, Vietnam was met with unprecedented mainstream opposition from the American people. People from all over the United States rioted and rallied for one valiant cause: peace. Civilians and draftees alike protested the war and all that it stood for. Popular activists led rallies and demonstrations while radios blasted songs filled with peace and harmony. This period in American history showed a new level of civil disobedience, a shared discontentment of the government or ruling
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As the name implies this campaign consisted of sustained aerial bombardment against communist North Vietnam. These efforts were done in an attempt to stop or at least negotiate with North Vietnam. The attack continued with little success until 1967 when Johnson decided to increase attacks. These attack were more focused than the original air strikes and were ultimately successful. In total, Operation Rolling Thunder dropped around 643,000 tons of bombs on North Vietnam. On the American side alone, over 900 Aircraft were lost and 745 crewmen were shot down. U.S. bombs caused an estimated $370 million in physical damage and 90,000 casualties, most of those being civilian …show more content…
The draft allowed men as young as eighteen years old to be called to fight in the war. While the average G.I.’s age during WWII was twenty-six, the average age of a G.I. in the Vietnam War was only nineteen (Vietnam War Statistics). According to the online newspaper Veterans Hour, draftees accounted for 30% of all combat deaths in Vietnam (The Veterans Hour). Barry McGuire’s popular song Eve of Destruction paralleled the voice of the nation in the lyrics, “You’re old enough to kill but not for votin’.” Outcries like his from all over the nation led to a major ramification the United States government. In 1971, the twenty-sixth amendment to the U.S. Constitution lowered the voting age from twenty-one to eighteen years old

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