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Vietnam War ProtexstIn many ways, the Vietnam War was a product of decades of lousy politics, not just American, but including the global spread of Communism. Communism works on paper, but when you add human desires to it, it fails. But America entered the Vietnam conflict largely because it felt threatened by Communism’s spread into democratic South Vietnam, and has sworn to defend democracy. Unfortunately, the only president who stepped back and looked at the whole picture was shot in the head in Dallas, plausibly to stop him from removing all American activity from Southeast Asia. The president who came after him wanted the War at all costs, and various motives have been put forth, including his selfish oil interests. War is big business and historically improved an economy by motivating people to enter the workforce and construct weapons. But no one wanted the war in Vietnam. There was no obvious villain to fight. And America had had enough of war over the last 60 years, from WWI to WWII to Korea. The Hawks clamored for a quick end with a few atomic bombs, but that would have infuriated and terrified China and Russia (both Communist). The smart argument was to remove the American military and civilian population from the area before they stayed long enough to have to save face after losing personnel and material.On the bright side, the Vietnam War established something good: peace rallies. Tens of thousands of U. S. citizens paraded, marched, and crowded into various public places, especially Washington D. C., to protest the War, and these rallies worked. Most scholars credit them with shortening U. S. involvement in Vietnam. After the fall of Saigon in 1975, Gerald Ford’s administration seriously considered various re-invasion plans (to save face), but the American public was so sick of the War in the news, with all its dead Americans, napalmed little Vietnamese girls, My Lai massacres, and lack of purpose, that the U. S. government decided to cut its losses. The War was over. America had lost. 58,000 Americans had died for no good reason.6