“What are we over here fighting for?” An American soldier asked this question during the Vietnam War. Many other American soldiers and citizens wondered the same thing. The conflict began when the United States sent armed forces to defend South Vietnam against Communist North Vietnam. It was supposed to be a brief military operation, but it ended as a bloody, twelve-year conflict in which thousands of American soldiers were killed. Author Deborah Kent examines this tragic and controversial period in American history from the first Marines arriving at Da Nang to the final airlift out of Saigon.