Chapter 29 War Abroad, War At Home AP United States History West Blocton High School Mr. Logan Greene Chapter Objectives • How did the national consensus of the 1950s and early 1960s unravel? • What challenges did American cities face in the late 1960s and 1970s? • Why did America’s view of the war in Vietnam change in 1968? • What was the legacy of Richard Nixon’s presidency? • How was Jimmy Carter’s idealism a frustration to his success as president? The End of Consensus • Essentially the country had little discourse during the 1950s and early 1960s. • However, as Civil Rights escalated and the Vietnam conflict intensified the country saw the consensus turn to disagreement and protest Vietnam • Under Johnson the US entered a controlled escalation of hostilities in Vietnam to avoid all out war • The issue became the fact that the US did not understand this new kind of war, a war against an entire society • Reaching a maximum level of 543,000 troops in 1969 the US was fully involved in the war attempting “search and destroy” or finding enemy locations with small units then using air and sea power to destroy them Dissent • As the war worsened citizens at home began to question the intention of the war • Much of the anger was focused on the Selective Service Agency which ran the draft • For the first time the protests were spearheaded by a youthful grouping of college students with support from radical politicians Community Activism • The 1960s activism was interesting due to its grass roots approach • These reformers pushed for better urban areas, an end to selective service, reduction of racism, and several other improvements • This was democracy from the ground up instead of politicians suggesting items Feminism • Feminism made a return in the 1960s as women focused on unfair working conditions (wages were sharply unequal) • As well the idea of the women’s liberation movement took hold as women desired rights to child bearing and the ideas of access to things like contraceptives Counterculture • Millions of young people became “hippies” in the 1960s, reveling in new music, drugs, and the idea of the counter culture • Counter culture advocates pushed for drug legalization and the idea that psychedelic drugs opened doors for people • Despite this the hippie culture rarely affected politics as this was left more for the intellectual new left Cities Under Stress • During the 1950s cities were the place to be and place for families to go • However, with the growth of dissent and also the changing of the economy cities changed in the perception of Americans to a place of squalor and danger Urban Crisis • Essentially the issue with cities was while affluent middle and upper class families worked in the cities they lived in suburbs • Only lower class, welfare level families in the cities themselves • Ghettos emerged with racial groups specifically inhabiting areas in a city • Rioting soon broke out as the economic frustrations pushed groups to the edge Minorities • As tension grew some in minority groups threw off assimilation and the idea of togetherness for separation from whites • The Black Power movement emerged calling for direct political influence and economic and political power for African-Americans • Out of this grew the Nation of Islam based around the Muslim faith and the Black Panther movement that was para-military and was notoriously violent 1968 • 1968 was one of the most turbulent years in the history of America • Americans turned against Vietnam in 1968 as the North Vietnamese Tet Offensive broke out proving to many that the war was simply not winnable • As the war spiraled out of control Johnson announced he would not seek reelection Red Spring • Numerous student protests occurred during the spring as the country split along Vietnam • Violence and assassinations also occurred: – April 4: Martin Luther King assassinated – June 5: Robert Kennedy assassinated – August 26-29: Riots at the Democratic National Convention • In the end former Eisenhower VP Richard Nixon won the election Nixon • Nixon immediately began to lower the amount of troops in Vietnam • The Nixon doctrine gave more weapons and money to the South Vietnamese but reduced the amount of US troops • By 1973 the US was out of Vietnam and watched as 6 months later the Communist North Vietnamese overwhelmed the South Vietnamese Nixon and the World • Nixon did have some impressive foreign policy accomplishments • Nixon became the first US President to visit China and opened the door to diplomatic talks with the now Communist country • Nixon presided over the SALT (Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty) talks that reduced the amount of nuclear weapons • As well, Nixon began détente, or the easing of hostilities with the USSR Nixon at Nome • At home Nixon battled crippling inflation, a holdover from LBJ • In addition to the inflation, OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) sharply increased oil prices sending the US into a gas rationing crisis • Nixon was powerless as the US economy stagnated • However, he did create the EPA to protect the environment Nixon’s Downfall: Watergate • Nixon won reelection in 1972 but everything unraveled quickly • The Pentagon Papers were leaked showing the dirtiness of America’s involvement in Vietnam • Nixon was quickly caught up in the Watergate scandal • This showed Nixon had broken into opponents offices during his reelection, as well as taping meetings in his offices • Nixon was forced to resign amid guarantees of his impeachment Gerald Ford • Ford took over as President as Nixon resigned • Basically he did very little past the Helsinki Accords which increased commerce between democratic and communist countries Carter: Idealism without Substance • A Georgia peanut farmer Jimmy Carter was elected President in 1976 • Carter had incredibly idealistic goals dealing with energy independence and environmental improvements • Unfortunately he did not have the experience nor the political chops to get them done • His presidency was mired in a bad economy and political squabbling Chapter Objectives • How did the national consensus of the 1950s and early 1960s unravel? • What challenges did American cities face in the late 1960s and 1970s? • Why did America’s view of the war in Vietnam change in 1968? • What was the legacy of Richard Nixon’s presidency? • How was Jimmy Carter’s idealism a frustration to his success as president?