I believed in Vietnam once, and I hated Hanoi Jane. Back then they pulled draft numbers according to the date of your birthday. It was like playing the lottery except you couldn't win, you could only lose. My number came up 258 so I didn't have to go. But I would have gone because my old man had fought the Japs in the Pacific Theater and he would have expected it of me. He said it was the right thing to do.
During that time they indoctrinated us in the schools and taught us to fear the communists by showing us propaganda films. We were taught that the world was made to two parts: one communist and the other free. In order to protect our freedom we had to fight and destroy the communists because they were evil. Well guess what? Over there the communists were saying the same thing about us.
Governments, including our own, lie.
Like animal life, governments evolve through natural selection towards greater power. Governments become master rather than servant: Totalitarian government controls by force. Democratic government controls thought. People think they are free but the government controls the information they are getting. The most effective way of doing this is to play on our emotions, particularly hate and fear.
Much of this is done through pictures. Pictures work well because we believe the things we see with our own eyes. But pictures can be composed and framed to produce a calculated effect. They seem to tell a story without words and the picture hits us at a gut level and stays in our mind.
The easiest way to control a democratic society is through fear of some real or invented enemy. People may be controlled much like sheep. In times of danger sheep will herd behind the ram for protection. This is a very old trick and has been used many times throughout history. The funny thing is that it always works because nobody ever figures it out until years later.
Turn off the TV and the radio for a couple of years. Read some history. Consider other points of view. Ask yourself how you would feel if you were an Iraqis or a Vietnamese. Look at the world not as an American, but as a human being.