Saigon, then the capitol, of South Vietnam was at the heart of an ideological battle turned war that pitted America on one side and a conglomeration of Socialist forces, notably Russia and China, represented by North Vietnam in the battle field.
The invasion of Saigon by North Vietnamese allied communist forces in 1972, following unsuccessful peace efforts, was a momentous event, in part because of the massive evacuations of American, South Korean and other nationalities that had to take place in lieu of the high cost of human life the war.
It is from this background that the two You Tube videos “the saddest day 30 April 1975: The fall of Saigon” and “Goodnight Saigon” explore the thesis; war only serves to destroy a people's way of life by entrenching anarchy leading to loss of property and life.
President Nixon begun his career when he was elected senator on a strong platform of anti- communism. Years later as the president of America, his initial term as was marked by his efforts to fulfill an election campaign promise of ending the war initiated by his predecessor,by withdrawing troops.
The challenge was do it in a way that will save face both internationally and domestically (Colodny, & Shactman, 2009). The reason for the foreign policy shift, was an escalation in antiwar protest in America that were reportedly backed by the Republican Government political rivals the Democrats.
The American public was increasingly withdrawing it's support for the war as they continued to receive dead, injured and psychologically scared loved ones from the battle fields. The enemy was unrelenting while the terrain was unforgiving to the young American recruits. The only American ally, South Vietnam, could not hold its own against the ideological and military war waged by its northern neighbor (Colodny, & Shactman, 2009).
The battle for Vietnamese hearts and souls soon lost as the Vietnamese took up arms and joined the worldwide a front against America's military excesses in Vietnam albeit and ironically so, via violent means.
During his second term , President Nixon having already lost by failure of his “madman strategy”,where he escalated attacks on North Vietnam with hope scaring his rivals, lost the remaining traces of public goodwill when connected episodes of state house sponsored unlawful espionage-like attacks on anti-war proponents , most notably an attack on Democratic campaign offices, collectively known as “the Watergate scandal” reached the public domain(Colodny, & Shactman, 2009) .
Soon Nixon was faced to resign, and with it signing of a peace agreement in Paris as Nixon's administration finally was presented with an opportunity to end a war (and people suffering) it already had already ended with the capture of Saigon. The thesis explores by the two videos; war only serves to destroy a people's way of life by entrenching anarchy leading to loss of property and life is evident even today (Colodny, & Shactman, 2009).
The emotional and psychological scars of the Vietnam war are still felt as survivors and loved ones battle to come to terms with the events of Vietnam war. The situation with Afghanistan, Iraq and Yemeni war, wars similar in circumstances with the Vietnam war, does not help much. As American's continue to lose loved ones, humanity on both sides of the divide despairs, is history repeating itself?
Colodny, L, & Shactman, T (2009), Forty years war: The rise of the Neocons, from Nixon to Obama,New York, NY :Harper Collins Publishers.