The U.S. leaving the war (1968-1972)
The Antiwar Movement and the War
In his presidential campaign, Richard Nixon promised to end the war. However, growing public discontent with the war, didn't stop Nixon from continuing the war. Nixon's policy to the war was "peace with honor" meaning the United States would not be disgraced by a stinted peace agreement with the Vietnamese. In a speech to the nation, Nixon said, "We will not be humiliated. We will not be defeated."
The storms of protest created by the invasion of neutral Cambodia dwarfed previous outcries against the Vietnam War. Public discontent was heard most loudly on campuses throughout the United States. From coast to coast, students took to the streets, blocking traffic, starting bonfires, and smashing the windows of federal buildings. Student anger might have subsided if the killings at Kent State had not occurred.
Nixon did have a plan to end the war but he did not want to abandon the South Vietnamese to the communists. He believed with American military and economic aid, the South Vietnamese would be able to defend themselves against the North Vietnamese. His policy was known as Vietnamization.