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  • The Responsibility of Intellectuals is an essay by Noam Chomsky about the moral, ethical, and social obligations of the intelligentsia regarding the public policies of American society. Dealing with the ideological background justifying the Vietnam War, the essay was published in the New York Review of Books when American and South Vietnamese violations of human rights began to be reported in the news media of the United States, to the surprise of American society, who, by 1967, had begun to view the war as a military, economic, and political failure. “The Responsibility of Intellectuals” is a critical examination of the intellectual culture of the U.S., which is largely subservient to power. Chomsky is especially critical of the social scientists and the technocrats who were providing geopolitical and pseudo-scientific justifications for the American and South Vietnamese war crimes committed in prosecuting the war against the civil population of Vietnam, whom they had identified as Communist sympathisers of the Viet Cong and of North Vietnam.

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