The Pentagon Papers
or as they were officially known as, United States – Vietnam Relations, 1945–1967: A Study Prepared by the Department of Defense, was a set of documents that chronicled the United States involvement in Vietnam for basically twenty-two years. Papers were released four years after the study was completed in 1971 on the front page of the New York Times, the documents were first discovered by Daniel Ellsberg, who felt that the Pentagon Papers needed to be publically known because they showed clear evidence that the US government knew that the Vietnam War could not be won and by continuing would result in many needles US casualties. The papers involved at least three presidential administrations, Presidents, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard M. Nixon which along the Watergate Scandal made President Nixon to resign in 1974. The US government understandably did not want the Pentagon Papers to be publish thus to be entered in the public record, so they got an injunction against the New York Times. The Times quickly appealed all the way to the Supreme Court which on June 18, 1971 ruled in a six to three decision that the government failed to meet the burden of proof to required to force prior restraint upon the Pentagon Papers. The decision by the Supreme Court is one of the most important legal decisions ever made in the field of journalism. The Pentagon Papers helped many people to become skeptical of their government and bring an end to the Vietnam War.