War Two And The Vietnam War Essay

1926 Words May 2nd, 2016 8 Pages
War has been a significant cause for debate among American intellectuals for the past century, with World War Two and the Vietnam War in particular leading to divisions based on whether America was right to become involved in certain wars and if it had a positive impact on the nation. Henry Luce coined the term “The American Century” in his essay of the same name, which articulated that the 20th century was a time when America had an obligation to the world to spread democracy and take its place as a world power, with the entrance of America into WWII allowing this to materialise. Henry Wallace however, wrote “The Century of the Common Man” in response to Luce’s essay and while he agreed with Luce in believing that it was America’s duty to be a beacon of liberty during WWII, he refutes the notion of America having the right to enforce their values upon other countries. In contrast, though participation in WWII was seen as a positive necessity for America by intellectuals, the Vietnam War was a controversial topic that saw many intellectuals in agreement that the US was wrong to intervene. Noam Chomsky in his work American Power and the New Mandarins argues that the Vietnam War was an unwanted intervention by not only the Vietnamese, but the American people, while also arguing that American imperialism was entirely damaging to international relations. This essay will therefore present the view that war has not only been the cause of large divisions between intellectuals from…

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