An Alabama Minister who led the Montgomery Bus Boycott along with Martin Luther King.
President of the Arkansas NAACP, she helped organize the integration of Central High by the Little Rock Nine.
The Birmingham police chief arrested Freedom Riders in 1961, ordered firemen to use high pressure hoses on children, and unleashed dogs on protesters during King's march in 1963.
Ngo Dinh Diem
A member of one of Vietnam's wealthiest Catholic families, he saw Communism as a crime against God. He ruled South Vietnam as a dictator until his assassination in November 1963.
This fifteen-year-old student faced National Guardsmen, heckling, and calls for lynching when she first tried to attend Central High in Little Rock, Arkansas.
The governor of Arkansas opposed the orders of the US Justice Department to integrate state schools. He ordered the National Guard to surround Central High in Little Rock, blocking black students from entering. The governor backed down when a district court ruling forbade him from interfering with integration.
Vo Nguyen Giap
Hi Chi Minh's most trusted lieutenant, he led the Viet Minh in a victory over the French that concluded with the battle at Dien Bien Phu.
This Indian leader inspired Martin Luther King with his successful campaigns of nonviolent resistance leading to the overthrow of the British in India.
Lyndon Baines Johnson
This American President was vilified by the Vietnam antiwar movement. The political success of Hanoi's Tet Offensive prompted the president to announce that he would not seek a second term.
One of President Reagan's staunchest allies, the British Prime Minister stated that Reagan's decision to go ahead with the Strategic Defence Initiative was crucial in ending the Cold War.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
The leader of America's civil rights movement, he mounted nonviolent resistance campaigns to achieve the end of segregation, the establishment of voting rights, and equal opportunity in employment for African Americans.
Ho Chi Minh
In 1919 he petitioned Western leaders at Versailles for rights for the Vietnamese people. Denied an audience, he vanished to Moscow, became a revolutionary, and led his people in defeating the French. He fought the Americans in the Vietnam War.
This Harvard educated math teacher organized the Freedom Vote, a mock election in the South. He recruited hundreds of college students to assist him in a voter registration drive for African Americans.
She sparked the Montgomery Bus Boycott on December 1, 1955 by refusing to yield her seat on a bus to a white man.
This President, who served from 1981 to 1989, has been credited with ending the Cold War without firing a shot. Under his leadership democracy advanced around the world, and America reaffirmed its position as the world's preeminent economy.
Opponents of the Vietnam War formed the largest antiwar protest in American history. Its members included ordinary citizens, professors, lawyers, businessmen, celebrities, and college students.
The Army of Vietnam, South Vietnam's army, recieved American aid from its inception. By 1965, battle losses were a battalion a week. During the Tet Offensive the troops fought poorly, and some fled the battle.
Representing 90% of the population, they were discriminated against by South Vietnam's Catholic minority. In response to the self-immolation protests of six monks and a nun, Diem ordered raids on temples. Diem's actions caused outrage in the US.
General Giap sent one hundred thousand "civilian laborers" to build a mountain road from the Chinese border to transport war material to Dien Bien Phu.
In 1961, an interracial group of civil rights workers traveled together from Washington, D.C. to Birmingham, Alabama. A student group traveled from Alabama to Mississippi. In response to the protest, Attorney General Robert Kennedy banned segregation in interstate travel.
During the War in Vietnam this was the nickname for American soldiesr, who groaned under the weight of the gear they had to carry.
Ku Klux Klan
A hate group founded in 1866 to oppose the new laws giving civil rights to ex-slaves, it threatened and used violence against black citizens protesting for civil rights in the 1950s and 1960s.
Little Rock Nine
The nine black teen-agers who in 1957 spearheaded the integration of Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Founded in 1909, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People offered support to the Montgomery Bus Boycott and to black students integrating southern schools.
Ho Chi Minh's National Liberation Front of South Vietnam was a Communist front intended to convince the West that the war was a civil war in South Vietnam, rather than an invasion of the South by the North.
During Rolling Thunder seven hundred pilots were shot down and captured by the enemy. Entitled to humane treatment under the terms of the Geneva Convention, American Prisoners of War in Vietnam were tortured. Prisoners resisted by refusing to cooperate, communicating in code, and sabotaging staged public appearances.
The Southern Christian Leadership Conference was formed in 1957 by a group of black ministers led by Martin Luther King. The organization supported student sit-ins in the South, and provided a base for launching other programs aimed at attaining civil rights.
Founded in 1960, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee was an independent group organized to support student sit-ins in the South.
Amercan soldiers who fought in Vietnam met with public abuse upon their return home. Many suffered from PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and exposure to Agent Orange. As an act of reconciliation, Congress donated the site for the Vietnam War Memorial on November 11, 1982.
Ho Chi Minh's fighters infiltrated villages, undermined respect for Diem, assassinated some four thousand South Vietnamese, and committed atrocities on villagers who would not cooperate.
Ho Chi Minh created the League for Vietnamese Independence, a Communist Front, in May 1941.
King chose "the biggest, toughest, most segregated city in the South" for his 1963 sit-ins and boycott campaign, culminating in the children's march.
The largest, most important army base of the ARVN in South Vietnam. Its base was plagued by Viet Cong snipers and small rocket attacks.
The name for the territory in Southeast Asia conquered and occupied by France from 1883 to 1954, which included Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia.
Ho Chi Minh City
On May 7, 1975, the Vietnamese Communists celebrated their victory by renaming Saigon, the former capital of South Vietnam.
Ho Chi Minh Trail
Ho Chi Minh sent a detachment to extend a supply trail from North Vietnam through neutral Laos and Cambodia into South Vietnam. The secret trail enabled thousands of Viet Cong and NVA soldiers to go South, and to transport war materiel.
This Communist stronghold was a triangle-shaped area northwest of Saigon, where military tunnels beneath villages stretched for miles.
At the 1986 summit with Mikhail Gorbachev, President Raegan refused to give up on the Strategic Defence Initiative, prompting Gorbachev to agree on deep cuts in strategic missiles by the US and the USSR.
Representatives at the Geneva Convention divided Vietnam into two countries; French forces were to regroup South, and Viet Minh forces north of this Demilitarized Zone. In June 1954 France granted South Vietnam full independence.
In Amerca's ground war in Vietnam, success was measured by body count. If more enemies died than Amercan soldiers, the Amercans' search and destroy mission was considered a success.
Brown vs. the Board of Education
The landmark Supreme Court ruling of May 17, 1954 declared separate educational facilities for different races to be "inherently unequal." The Brown decision opened the way for school desegregation throughout the South.
US citizens such as the Quakers who are able to prove their religious opposition to war are therefore excused from military service.
To protect American soldiers from ambushes, the Americans used Agent Orange, an herbicide, to strip away the jungle in Vietnam. By the end of the war the US had used the herbicide to strip over five million acres of foliage - about one seventh of Vietnam's total land mass.
During the Vietnam war protesters broke into draft boards and destroyed draft records. Hundreds of thousands refused to register for the draft or burned their draft cards. Some 150,000 American young men fled the country to avoid military service.
Education by Terrorism
The Viet Cong policy of killing villagers who helped Americans or resisted the Viet Cong. The VC burned entire villages, blew up a school, and committed other atrocities against villagers, as well as attacking American soldiers.
In 1965 Robert Moses organized college students and civil rights workers to teach black children in "freedom schools," and assist black citizens to register to vote.
On July 21, 1954 the representatives at the conference released two documents: a cease-fire agreement that divided Vietnam at the 17th parallel, and a declaration calling for free elections.
Gulf of Tonkin Resolution
The joint resolution of the US Congress passed in August 1964 in direct response to a minor naval engagement off the coast of North Vietnam. This resolution gave President Johnson authorization, without a formal declaration of war by Congress, for the use of military force in Southeast Asia.
"I Have a Dream" Speech
On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King spoke to an audience of 250,000 at the Lincoln Memorial about Amerca's broken promise of equality for black citizens, and about his dream that one day the descendents of slaves and the descendents of slave owners would sit together at a table of brotherhood.
Jim Crow Laws
These laws were passed in the South to ensure segregation of the races, in opposition to admendments added to the Constitution to protect the rights of blacks after slavery was abolished.
Letter from Birmingham Jail
Martin Luther King wrote this letter explaining his philosophy of nonviolent direct action in response to a letter signed by eight clergymen attacking civil rights demonstrations in Birmingham.
March on Washington
On August 28, 1963, 250,000 people assembled at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC to hear Martin Luther King speak on civil rights.
Montgomery Bus Boycott
A successful boycott of the Montgomery Bus Company from 1955-1956 by black citizens of Montgomery resulted in the end of segregated seating on city buses.
On March 16, 1968 Amercan soldiers committed one of the worst atrocities of the Vietnam War, massacring between 400 and 500 women, children, and old people at this Viet Cong base.
Nonviolent Direct Action
Martin Luther King's philosophy of achieving social change through nonviolent rallies, marches, boycotts, and other acts of civil disobedience.
The antinuclear movement urged Reagan to agree to a pact which would require both superpowers to maintain nuclear arsenals at existing levels.
In the 1980s, President Reagan's economic policies led to a drastic reduction in inflation, lower taxes, and a decrease in unemployment, enabling America to become the world's most successful economy.
Mahatma Gandhi's philosophy of nonviolent direct action consisted of self-purification, mass action, boycotts and strikes, non-cooperation and civil disobedience.
In 1960, Joseph McNeil and a group of students from Greensboro, North Carolina planned this nonviolent protest against segregation of public facilities such as lunch counters in the South.
Small, wiry American soldiers were able to explore and clear the tunnels beneath North Vietnam's Iron Triangle. Many of these men were Puerto Rican or Mexican American.
Battle of Khe Sanh
On January 21, 1968 Hanoi's General Giap launched a surprise attack on this American base. Like the French at Dien Bien Phu, the Americans were outnumbered, but the US Air Force delivered a victory for the US.
Dien Bien Phu
French General Henri Navarre planned to lure the Vietnamese into an all-out battle in this mountain valley. In March 1954 Giap attacked the French base, and 49,000 Vietnamese battled 10,800 Frenchmen. Giap destroyed the French airstrip, and the French lost the battle and their colony.
Mutually Assured Destruction
In the 1980s many within Amerca's arms control establishment believed that the US should not have a nuclear defense system, on the theory that if the US and the USSR each had large enough arsenals to threaten one another's destruction, neither side would risk initiating an attack.
Following a stalemate in peace talks in 1972, President Nixon bombed North Vietnam and ordered the mining of Haiphong Harbor, bringing Hanoi back to the peace table.
Nixon's "madman theory" was a plan to make Hanoi think he would start a nuclear war if they did not make peace. Nixon launched an air offensive in March 1969 against Communist sanctuaries in Cambodia, leading to the overthrow of Cambodian Prince Sihanouk and strengthening Cambodia's Communists.
President Johnson's campaign of bombardment was aimed at eliminating the Viet Cong by persuading Hanoi to end its support. The operation consisted of strategic bombing rather than an all-out effort to defeat North Vietnam.
Search and Destroy
President Johnson instructed General Westmoreland to hunt down and kill as many Viet Cong and NVA (National Army of Vietnam) soldiers as possible. Between 1965 and 1968, 600,000 VC/NVA died in these operations.
in 1982 Reagan advocated strategic arms reductions, promising that the US would cut its nuclear arsenal in half if the USSR would agree to proportionately large reductions in its stockpile.
Popularly known as "Star Wars," Reagan's Strategic Defence Initiative, or missile defense program, was based on conversations with Edward Teller, the inventor of the hydrogen bomb.
Hanoi's campaign to undermine Saigon's government and persuade Amercans to oppose the Vietnam War began on January 31, 1968. The Viet Cong struck South Vietnam's largest cities, provincial capitals, and small towns. The allied forces, led by the US, won a victory, but the campaign was a political triumph for the enemy.