Vietnam War Media Kit

Excerpt: Robert McNamara, "We were wrong," May 1995. LBJ Library.



In May 1995, Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara appeared at the LBJ Library to talk about the Vietnam War. McNamara had served through the Kennedy and Johnson administrations and was one of the architects of the war in Vietnam.

After he left the administration, he revealed that he had changed his mind and he felt that he and the president he served and the others that were involved had been wrong: "There are several reasons I've chosen to speak out about Vietnam now. The most compelling one I state in the preface and I'll read it for you: We of the Kennedy and Johnson administrations who participated in the decisions on Vietnam acted on what we thought were the principles and the traditions of this nation. We made our decisions in the light of those values. Yet we were wrong. I believe we were terribly wrong. I believe, therefore, we owe it to future generations to explain why."

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