1975 - What Is Our Responsibility to Vietnamese Refugees? - Issue Guide (Downloadable PDF)

Free Download

Full Description

It is May 1975. Our country has been involved in a war for the past decade in Vietnam to stop the spread of communism. Strictly speaking, the Vietnam conflict was never a war since Congress didn’t pass a declaration of war, yet over 58,000 American soldiers have died. The war has divided our country, families, and communities. Some see it as an abuse of presidential power. Huge antiwar protests over the last decade have divided the country.

The president addressed Congress and a national audience on television on April 10 with a plea for military and humanitarian assistance. He considers the support “a profound moral obligation.” Congress, however, is reluctant to evacuate non-Americans, since they fear that will lead our country back into the war.

The US Embassy in Saigon closed on April 29 and the South Vietnamese government collapsed the following day. Photographs of helicopters rescuing people from the rooftops left everyone speechless. Some estimate that over 200,000 Vietnamese citizens will be killed by the North Vietnamese Communists if the Vietnamese who supported the Americans are not evacuated. Americans are divided over what to do. The following options are based on competing concerns:

Option 1: Welcome and Support Refugees
Option 2: Focus on Our Own Problems
Option 3: Hold the Federal Government Accountable for Its Mistakes

Item Details

Page Count: 
Published Date: 
Tuesday, August 29, 2023
Product Language: 
Target Audiences: