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The antiwar movement actually consisted of a number of independent interests, often only vaguely allied and contesting each other on many issues, united only in opposition to the Vietnam War.
Attracting members from college campuses, middle-class suburbs, labor unions, and government institutions, the movement gained national prominence inpeaked inand remained powerful throughout the duration of the conflict.
Encompassing political, racial, and cultural spheres, the antiwar movement exposed a deep schism within s American society.
A small, core peace movement had long existed in the United States, largely based in Quaker and Unitarian beliefs, but failed to gain popular currency until the Cold War era. Their most visible member was Dr. Benjamin Spock, who joined in after becoming disillusioned with President Kennedy's failure to halt nuclear proliferation.
A decidedly middle-class organization, SANE represented the latest incarnation of traditional liberal peace activism. Their goal was a reduction in nuclear weapons.
Unwilling to settle for fewer nuclear weapons, the students desired a wholesale restructuring of American society. Jack London had been a member, as had Upton Sinclair, but the organization had long lain dormant until Michael Harrington, a New York socialist, revived it late in the s as a forum for laborers, African Americans, and intellectuals.
From this meeting materialized what has been called the manifesto of the New Left-the Port Huron Statement. Written by Hayden, the editor of the University of Michigan student newspaper, the page document expressed disillusionment with the military-industrial-academic establishment.
Hayden cited the uncertainty of life in Cold War America and the degradation of African Americans in the South as examples of the failure of liberal ideology and called for a reevaluation of academic acquiescence in what he claimed was a dangerous conspiracy to maintain a sense of apathy among American youth.
Throughout the first years of its existence, SDS focused on domestic concerns. The students, as with other groups of the Old and New Left, actively supported Lyndon Johnson in his campaign against Barry Goldwater. Following Johnson's victory, they refrained from antiwar rhetoric to avoid alienating the president and possibly endangering the social programs of the Great Society.
Although not yet an antiwar organization, SDS actively participated in the Civil Rights struggle and proved an important link between the two defining causes of the decade.
Begun in December by students who had participated in Mississippi's "Freedom Summer," the FSM provided an example of how students could bring about change through organization.
In several skirmishes with University President Clark Kerr, the FSM and its dynamic leader Mario Savio publicized the close ties between academic and military establishments. With the rise of SDS and the FSM, the Old Left peace advocates had discovered a large and vocal body of sympathizers, many of whom had gained experience in dissent through the Civil Rights battles in the South.
By the beginning ofthe antiwar movement base had coalesced on campuses and lacked only a catalyst to bring wider public acceptance to its position. That catalyst appeared early in February, when the U.
The pace of protest immediately quickened; its scope broadened.
On 24 March, faculty members at the University of Michigan held a series of "teach-ins," modeled after earlier Civil Rights seminars, that sought to educate large segments of the student population about both the moral and political foundations of U.
The teach-in format spread to campuses around the country and brought faculty members into active antiwar participation. In March, SDS escalated the scale of dissent to a truly national level, calling for a march on Washington to protest the bombing.
On 17 Aprilbetween 15, and 25, people gathered at the capital, a turnout that surprised even the organizers. Buoyed by the attendance at the Washington march, movement leaders, still mainly students, expanded their methods and gained new allies over the next two years.Foreign Relations of the United States; About the Foreign Relations Series; U.S.
Involvement in the Vietnam War: the Gulf of Tonkin and Escalation, President Lyndon B. Johnson requested permission from the U.S. Congress to increase the U.S.
military presence in Indochina. On August 7, , Congress passed the Gulf of . Watch video · Lyndon Baines Johnson (often referred to as “LBJ”) was elected vice president of the United States in and was sworn in as the 36th president of the United States in after President. Opposition to United States involvement in the Vietnam War began with demonstrations in against the escalating role of the U.S.
military in the Vietnam War and grew into a broad social movement over the ensuing several years. This movement informed and helped shape the vigorous and polarizing debate, primarily in the United States, during the second half of the s and early s .
The Vietnam War. The Bitter End - January 1, - Henry Cabot Lodge, former American ambassador to South Vietnam, is nominated by President-elect Nixon to be the senior U.S negotiator at the Paris peace talks..
January 20, - Richard M. Nixon is inaugurated as the 37th U.S. President and declares " the greatest honor history can bestow is the title of peacemaker. In the only hostile entry thus far in the American Presidents series, Elizabeth Drew questioned Nixon’s moral fitness to be president.
Given Lyndon Johnson’s early election-stealing and sycophancy in New Deal Washington, later boorish and cruel treatment of subordinates, constant womanizing, and sense of inferiority that made him unreasonable about Vietnam—all of which Peters admits.
Lyndon Baines Johnson became the 36th president of the United States on the assassination of John F. Kennedy in November A skilled promoter of liberal domestic legislation, he was also a staunch believer in the use of military force to help achieve the country's foreign policy objectives.