The most unforgettable images from the Vietnam War

The Vietnam War was one of the most contentious conflicts of the 20th century. Yet, at the same time, it was one of the most well-documented, with photographers capturing powerful and striking images of the war and its impact on soldiers and civilians alike.

These photographs have become essential to our collective memory of the war and helped shape our understanding of the conflict.

In this post, we will look at some of the most unforgettable images of the Vietnam War and explore the stories behind them. From the heroism of soldiers in battle to the devastating effects of the war on civilians, these photographs capture the full range of human experiences during the Vietnam War.

A makeshift hospital during The Vietnam War, 1970 
A US 9th Infantry soldier is submerged except for his rifle as he crosses a muddy stream south of Saigon, 1968. Photo by Henri Huet/AP
A Vietnam veteran throws his medals at the Capitol building to protest the war, 1971.
The lottery for the Vietnam draft. Every capsule was a day of the year and determined the order of draftees by birthday. 1969.

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Vietnamese orphans being airlifted to the US for adoption in 1975.
Lt. Col. Robert Stirm meets his family after spending more than five years as a POW in North Vietnam in 1973.
“War is Good Business- Invest Your Son”
People fight to get on a plane out of South Vietnam during the US withdrawal on April 1, 1975.
A US Marine rescues two Vietnamese children in Hue during the Tet Offensive of 1968.
Future presidential candidate, John Kerry, speaks out against the war on April 21, 1971.
Two South Vietnamese child soldiers smoke while waiting for a North Vietnamese attack.
US soldiers show off a captured communist flag, c. 1967.
US Marines carry their weapons while on their way to bathe, 1966.
Lo Manh Hung was likely the youngest photojournalist of the Vietnam War. Photo taken on February 18, 1968.
Mangrove forest destroyed by Angen Orange, 1976.
“War Is Hell”
The “Doom Patrol,” Quảng Nam Province, Vietnam, 1968.
Chopper pilot post-mission, Vietnam 1965
Khe Sanh, Vietnam, 1968
Two American soldiers with a fallen comrade, Vietnam, 1970s
Combat helicopters fly overhead during Operation Pershing, Vietnam, 1967-68.
Paratroopers wade across a river during the monsoon season in 1965.
US airman Dewey Wayne Waddell held prisoner outside of Hanoi, Vietnam, 1967.
Landing Zone Charlie Brown, 1968
Pro-Vietnam War demonstrator in NYC, 1966.
North Vietnam activist meeting. They hid their identities from one another in case of capture, 1972
Writing on lighter from Vietnam war
US corpsman carries a child in Hue

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