Propaganda in Vietnam


  • Bobby Craig Sinquefield


The earliest examples of propaganda date back to around 515 BCE and have been used with varying degrees of success and failure ever since. During World War II, Hitler employed a wildly successful propaganda campaign, even though he lost the war. Almost a decade later, in 1954, the United States embarked on a propaganda campaign in Vietnam. While the United States’ propaganda campaign was successful in the beginning, it quickly began to flounder and fail. As the ground war began and escalated, the United States propaganda machine continued to fail in its propaganda efforts, not only in Vietnam but also at home and around the world. These propaganda failures, as well as the loss of a brutally violent war, were combined with declining support at home and ravaging television images to create a perfect storm that caused a myriad of emotional and cultural responses that linger to this day. The below image promised enemy soldiers that their medical needs would be met if they surrendered.