Vietnam After the War
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Regaining Their Life After War

After War

Makyla Peckham's insight:

Regaining Their Life After War

By: Meghan McCarthy

           

What if suddenly you had to drop everything you were doing in your life, go into war and eventually try to go back to a normal life after being in war. For many it may seem like it’d be an easy thing to do, but in reality you wouldn’t know what it was like, unless it happened to you.

            Soldiers go through many things after war. It’s a struggle to get back on track of their everyday lives. There are both physical and emotional effects on the soldiers after war. Some of the struggles they face are dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder, getting a job, being with their family, money struggles, health struggles and much more.

            Soldiers are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is caused by seeing life-threatening events occur. Soldiers watch people suffer and die all around them. It’s a big weight on their shoulders. The noises and them keeping a watchful eye, carry on with them in their lives. Any strange noise can cause the soldier to react. Also anyone who seems to be acting strange can cause the soldier to react. Soldiers that have been severely injured need to learn to live with whatever difficulties that come with their injuries. Suicide is at high risk as well.

            Soldiers are finding it to be quite hard in the family department. It is hard on both the soldier and their family. Soldiers need to find their place in their family again. Soldiers are forced to find jobs in order to support themselves and even their families. Many are homeless too. Spouses have learned to live without the soldiers. They have taken over all the duties that the soldiers used to do. The children of the soldiers can find it hard to accept them back into their lives after they’ve gone for so long. Sometimes the soldiers are even meeting their kids for the first time (born while they were away). The soldiers can miss a lot of big steps in their child’s life. Soldiers can be faced with divorce due to being out of touch or even cheating.

            It’s very tragic that they risk their lives for others only to find their lives to fall apart or to even lose their lives themselves. Soldiers deserve so much respect, especially since they were able to put everyone else’s lives ahead of them. They need to be honored.

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Casualties

Casualties of Vietnam War and others before it.

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           The Vietnam War has caused casualties past the millions. The deaths were caused by suicide, disease, and military action. The total number of deaths goes to 2.1 million people. 1.1 million of those deaths being soldiers, 2 million being civilians, and 600,000 being wounded. Yet to add to this count are many more soldiers who died in the final battle. In World War I the casualties were much worse but that was an international death count yet the Vietnam death count was between two countries. World War I total death count came to 16,563,868, Direct Civilian deaths (Due to military action): 948,248 Excess Civilian deaths (Due to famine & Disease): 5,893,000, Military Deaths:  9,722,620, TOTAL ENTENTE POWERS DEATH COUNT:  9,407,136, TOTAL CENTRAL POWERS DEATH COUNT: 7,153,241.

            Many lost their lives in the World Wars than Vietnam but American deaths in the World Wars were much higher. The actual number of dead Americans in the World Wars is unknown but the best guess is around 535,965 dead. According to many the Vietnam War was the scariest war they had ever been to. Veterans from the World War II agreed that the Vietnam War was much more brutal. As an extra bonus let’s compare to one more war, The Revolutionary War. The first war fought by Americans cost us 17,000. Vietnam War having 58,193 American deaths. Revolutionary War has less casualties than the Vietnam War.

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Juicy Bars

Juicy Bars | Vietnam After the War | Scoop.it
Makyla Peckham's insight:

Hải Phòng, North Vietnam- It only took about an hour and about $40 dollars in cash for young soldier, Leroy Birch to attain a phone number from an eye catching young girl in a Juicy bar. Juicy bars is a slang word used to be havens for prostitution aimed at the U.S military. They typically cluster around the military bases across South Korea.

Young Leroy, walked into the bar with a wedding band on his ring finger. Later in the night, he was found conversing with a girl after having a couple of drinks. How would his wife back home feel if she knew her husband was consorting with a girl he bought at a Juice bar? Leroy wrote a letter to his wife admitting to his wrongs and apologizing for his actions. She responded by filing a divorce and was completely disgusted by her husband after asking friends and family what a Juicy Bar was. They’d only been married about a year before Leroy went away for war and she was convinced nothing would go wrong with the marriage. Leroy showed no interest or showed no care about what his wife had to say and continued to go to Juicy bars every night after receiving her letter and didn’t return home when the time came.

            Prostitution is an everyday reality for these young women. They were often told fake promises; if they worked at these bars they’d earn an income as singers or entertainers. If they didn’t make enough money selling drinks, bar owners would push them out the door and force them to sleep with men to make money.

            It’s the government’s fault that these bars were created. They don’t make enough job opportunities for people with low income; they don’t manage jobs that are given to immigrants. The United States government didn’t keep a closer eye on their soldiers and not helping these victims. The U.S. Department of Defense has a harsh policy of prostitution but no such prohibition exists for Juicy bars despite the history of them. Still dozens or even hundreds of Juicy bars evade sanctions. Juicy bars, most say are primarily for selling juice with a few minutes of women companionship for 10 dollars a glass. For this reason, it’s not off-limits. They are also a big part of tourist business in South Korea and many are officially licensed by the government. Store owners would sometimes hold women’s passports and hold their pay so they would be forced to stay and work at the juice bar, even though most owners only made 10% of the profit on juice.

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How Post- Traumatic Stress Disorder Affected Those Who Returned From The War

Describes the harrowing consequences of having PTSD.

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            “Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an emotional anxiety disorder which stems from a particular incident evoking significant stress.” (American Psychiatric Association) The disorder caused its victims to experience déjà vu in having reoccurring nightmares about the events that occurred while the veterans were in Vietnam.

            Victims of PTSD experience a variety of symptoms. They include emotional illness, insomnia, and difficulty sleeping. Being alarmed, scared and alert at all times is another result of PTSD. Constant déjà vu in the form of reliving events that caused the trauma are also present. This can come in the form of flashbacks and nightmares; even basic household tasks can bring back the harrowing nightmare. More serious, and life threatening symptoms associated with PTSD include depression, abuse of illicit substancesloss of memory, loss of cognitive functions (meaning not being able to comprehend thoughts), divorce, and unfortunately in many cases suicide.

       Dr. Robert J. Lifton, a psychiatrist at Yale University in New Haven, CT; conducted a study on PTSD and how it affected PTSD survivors. In his study, he described moral revulsion as the way the illness affected the patients. He used this quote as a way to summarize PTSD’s effect: “Months or even years after their return to this country, many Vietnam vets combined features of the Traumatic Stress Syndrome with pre- occupations with questions of meaning- concerning life, and ultimately, all other areas of living.”

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Economic Effects of Vietnam War

by Steven Rivera

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The Vietnam War had a major impact on the U.S. economy in a negative way.  The biggest effect that it had was the change in production in factories.  Instead of producing consumer goods, the government used the factories to produce items for the military.  During the war, the war was the number one priority.  Funds were going overseas to support the war, but they were not returning to the United States.  With the lack of funds, consumers did not have confidence that they would be making their money back.  Therefore, they would stop investing their money in businesses because the government didn’t have any funds.  The amount of capital on businesses was restricted so that they wouldn’t go bankrupt.  Interest rates rose to try and get those funds back.   Many Americans lost faith in the American economy; therefore investors would drop out with their investments.

            The effects were far worse for Vietnam.  The physical events of the war destroyed the rural parts of the country.  The agricultural economy of the country had been destroyed by the war.  Many relocated to the cities and urban communities.  Some people, known as “boat people”, fled the country on boats to get away from the destruction caused by the war.  The USSR stopped helping the Vietnamese in the 1980’s.  Vietnam tried hard to remain independent, but the inflation in Vietnam increased as much as 500% each year.  Vietnam eventually gave in and was then open for trading with other countries, including trade with enemies such as Cambodia.

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