What were the results of the Vietnam War?
There were several results of the Vietnam War. Some were military in nature while others were political in nature.
When the Vietnam War ended, North Vietnam won the war. Vietnam was united as one country under Communist rule. Ho Chi Minh was the leader, and Hanoi was the capital. The United States had no relations with the new country when the war ended.
Another result of the Vietnam War was the government lost credibility in the eyes of the American people. Americans had generally believed what the government was telling them was true. During the Vietnam War, it was clear to many Americans that the government was not telling them the truth about events in Vietnam and how the war was going. To this day, people don’t believe the government is being honest with the public. This feeling started during the Vietnam War.
A third result of the war was Congress tried to get back some of its powers it gave to the president during the war with the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. Congress passed the War Powers Act to limit for how long the president could commit our troops to other countries without the approval of Congress. It also established a time line for informing Congress when such actions would occur. While this law had good intentions, it hasn’t been very effective. Many presidents have ignored this law since there are no penalties mentioned for not following it.
The immediate result of the Vietnam War was that the communists won and Vietnam was united as one country, run by the communists. In Vietnam, this led to a number of things. Notably, it led to the flight of over 1 million Vietnamese who wanted to escape the country. Many of these became the "boat people" who tried to reach various other countries. In addition, it led to economic difficulties in Vietnam that were exacerbated by conflicts with Cambodia and China.
The other notable results of the war were felt by the United States. The war did many things to the US. One of the most important things was that it helped to split American society between traditional patriots and the people who had been anti-war. Another important result was that it made Americans much more wary, at least for a time, of having a forceful foreign policy.
Congress reduced the voting age to 18 and converted the military to an all volunteer force. The War efforts required large investments and thus curtailed the funds available for social reforms and development, so the war put reforms on hold and increased inflation. Citizens became distrustful of the government and questioned the policy of interfering with other countries. This also ensured that the US refrained from interfering into other countries' affairs for the next few years.
In Vietnam, millions of people became refugees and hundreds of thousands died. The extensive use of chemical warfare by the US led to permanent damage to hundreds of thousands of people. Vietnam is still suffering from the aftermath of the war.