To have squandered such trust, much of it gained by people like Ernie Pyle, is a remarkable achievement. Cronkite initiated the decline by announcing we'd lost in Vietnam: The Lies of Tet
On January 30, 1968, more than a quarter million North Vietnamese soldiers and 100,000 Viet Cong irregulars launched a massive attack on South Vietnam. But the public didn't hear about who had won this most decisive battle of the Vietnam War, the so-called Tet offensive, until much too late.Read The Whole Thing, especially if you are not aware of the history. Also, be aware that it was the refusal of a Democrat Congress' to provide aid promised to the South Vietnamese that was directly responsible for the defeat of South Vietnam and the atrocities that followed in Cambodia.
Media misreporting of Tet passed into our collective memory. That picture gave antiwar activism an unwarranted credibility that persists today in Congress, and in the media reaction to the war in Iraq. The Tet experience provides a narrative model for those who wish to see all U.S. military successes -- such as the Petraeus surge -- minimized and glossed over.
In truth, the war in Vietnam was lost on the propaganda front, in great measure due to the press's pervasive misreporting of the clear U.S. victory at Tet as a defeat. Forty years is long past time to set the historical record straight.