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A Wall That Brings Us Together: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall (video)

Tom Williams / Roll Call / Getty Images

A video about the history and impact of the iconic memorial.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall, often referred to simply as “The Wall,” in Washington, D.C., has become one of the most respected examples of memorial architecture in the world. At one time the abstract memorial was considered controversial, but after it opened to the public in 1982, Vietnam veterans, their families, and other visitors have appreciated its symbolism and the opportunity it presents for contemplation and reflection.

Although walls are often seen as barriers, this wall encourages interaction. Instead of dividing us from the past, it turns the tens of thousands of names engraved on it into a tangible experience that can literally be felt. After a war that caused so much division, we pay tribute to a brilliant memorial that brings us together to remember and heal.