Skip to main content


It is December 1968. The United States has been actively fighting communism in Vietnam since the French defeat at Dien Bein Phu in 1955. Our enemies are the North Vietnamese Army and the Vietcong (South Vietnamese sympathizers). The North Vietnamese are led by communist Ho Chi Minh. Our involvement started with the Gulf of Tonkin, where U.S. ships were fired upon by the North Vietnamese in international waters. What followed was a resolution by Congress which gave the President power to "take any action necessary to stop the spread of Communism in Southeast Asia."


Today there are almost half a million U.S. troops in Vietnam. Domestic opposition to the war has been steadily increasing. The beginning of this year was a crucial turning point. Despite the military assurances that we are winning the war, the North Vietnamese Army got as far as the American Embassy in Saigon as part of the Tet Offensive. Although they were repulsed, public opinion for the first time is more than 50% against the war. President Johnson announced that he will not run for re-election and President Nixon was elected. He promises to gradually withdraw troops and end our participation in the war.


Who knows what 1969 will bring in Vietnam and at home?


You are about to enter your sophomore year at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Look through documents beginning with those that have already occurred on the campus (teach-ins, demonstrations) and some that will provide a glimpse into what your future on campus will be like.


Select one of the activities listed under "Vietnam" to learn about issues that you will encounter on campus.