Aftermath of Vietnam War
The Vietnam War cost American taxpayers about $150 billion. Over 2 million men and women served during the war and about 58,000 were killed as a result of the war. Many soldiers came home disabled for life, some lost limbs and others were poisoned by chemicals like Agent Orange. Others returned from the war addicted to drugs and many suffered mental problems as a result of their participation in the war. Veterans of Vietnam were often ignored, shunned, and even discriminated against by the public and their government, until recently. Both hawk and dove politicians did not vote money for governmental programs that would help the vets. A memorial to the Vietnam vets was not erected until 1982, almost ten years after the war ended. Many considered the Vietnam War a loss for American prestige and influence in the world. Many people became disenchanted with a civilian government that interfered with the military operations of the war. Future presidents would learn the lessons from the Veitnam War. The anti-war demonstrations against the war seemed to cause a rift between generations. In some, there was a definite loss in patriotic feeling for the United States. Many felt the government did not handle the situation wisely and even lied to the American public. The Vietnam War was a very costly war, socially, economically, and politically.