1.1 During the Vietnam war, in
America many Americans used
1.2 Television, therefore, became the most
important source of news for American
people during the Vietnam war.
1.3 New technology such as new recording
items such as video cameras and audio
recorder became more common.
1.3.1 Therefore, journalists and reporters were now able to take
much more photographs and record video
1.4 The US Goverment struggled to hide everything
that was happening in Vietnam from the public and
1.4.1 With a lack of government controls, the media was now able to
publish uncensored pictures and videos showing the brutality of
the war in Vietnam and this influenced the America public opinion
2 Begining of the war
2.1 At the beginning of the war, the press had little interest in Vietnam.
2.2 However, at the end of 1960, the
death of many civilians in a coup
against President Diem started to
change their views on Vietnam. Soon
after, the New York Times sent their
first reporter to Saigon following by
journalists from Reuters, Agency
France Press, Times and so on.
2.3 In order to deal with the large
number of press corps, the US
had to apply a more effective
method to keep those
correspondents in line.
3 The Tet Offensive and After
3.1 In late January 1968, the Tet Offensive
occurred and marked a major turning
point in media’s coverage of the war.
3.1.1 As a result, the public misled by the media viewed the offensive as a triumph for the communists
and quickly changed their opinions against the war.
3.2 Based on the media reports from
Vietnam, much of the American public
concluded that the Tet offensive was a
defeat. They thought that it meant the
end of the war was near. The Tet offensive
had demonstrated that more American
soilders could die and they could lose
even more money even if America could
establish a separate southern regime. This
lead to more people wanting the
Americans out of Vietnam
3.3 After the Tet Offensive,
media coverage of the war
negative. Images of both
civilian and military casualties
were increasingly televised.
3.3.1 Additionally, many iconic pictures of the war
such as The Execution of a Vietcong Guerilla
or The Napalm Girl exerted a negative and
lasting influence on the public feeling.
4 What The media showed
4.1 Vietnam was the first war covered in depth on the nightly news. The
film coverage showed the realities of warfare: wounded civilians,
children who had lost their parents, villages destroyed, American GIs
with various gruesome wounds from land mines and artillery fire.