June 11, 2018 | SuzyQ
It's been 50 years since the country experienced one of the most turbulent years in American - and world - history. The Tet Offensive in Vietnam, the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy, numerous anti-war protests across the nation, the My Lai Massacre, violent police clashes with anti-war protesters at the Democratic National Convention, the seizure of the USS Pueblo by North Korea, student riots in Paris - these are just some of the seismic events that occurred in 1968. Yet, there were some bright spots to celebrate as well. The astronauts on Apollo 8 became the first humans to orbit the moon, the Beatles launched Apple Records, and the Detroit Tigers won their first World Series since 1945.
Brokaw chronicles the turbulent year of war, assassinations, and cultural upheaval.
In 1968, an American spy ship set out to pinpoint military radar stations along the coast of North Korea. Packed with advanced electronic-surveillance equipment and classified intelligence documents, the USS Pueblo was poorly armed and lacked backup by air or sea. Its crew, led by a charismatic, hard-drinking ex-submarine officer named Pete Bucher, was made up mostly of untested sailors in their teens and twenties. On a frigid January morning while eavesdropping near the port of Wonsan, the Pueblo was challenged by a North Korean gunboat. When Bucher tried to escape, his ship was quickly surrounded by more patrol boats, shelled and machine-gunned, and forced to surrender.
During the summer of 1971, in the midst of protests and demonstrations in the United States against the Vietnam War, it became public for the first time that something horrific had happened in the remote South Vietnamese hamlet of My Lai. Three years previously, in March 1968, a unit of American soldiers engaged in seemingly indiscriminate violence against unarmed civilians, killing over 500 people, including women and children. News filtered slowly through the system, but was initially suppressed, dismissed or downplayed by military authorities. By late 1969, however journalists had pursued the rumors, when New York Times reporter Seymour Hirsch published an exposé on the massacre, the story became a national outrage.
The words 'My Lai' are seared into our memories of the Vietnam War, but few know what really happened in the small Vietnamese village on March 16, 1968. Now, drawing on 400 hours of recently discovered audio recordings and new interviews with participants, eye witnesses, and investigators, the complete story can finally be told about one of the most shocking atrocities in modern times, and about lesser-known acts of remarkable courage.
A look at what happened during the anti-war protest of the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, and the subsequent trial brought against the protest organizers by the city. Includes animation, archival footage, and music from today's artists.
Recounts the bold but dangerous mission to secure America's position as the first nation to reach the moon, revealing the dangers endured by its crew and the ways the mission brought renewal to a country ravaged by assassinations and war.