I read a powerful piece this week written by David Lamb in the June 2009 Smithsonian about Amerasians, The Children of the Dust. Another piece in TIME from May 13, 2002 also shows a chapter from the story about these children. Then there is the 1991 Broadway musical, Miss Saigon. I’ve seen this musical twice and I’ve always felt the tears.
When Americans fled Vietnam at the end of that war, they left behind a tragedy—thousands of children born from romance, passion and lust. They also left behind a horrible legacy from the Agent Orange sprayed on the rainforests. Many of these children suffered a cruel fate at the hands of prejudice and hate.
A decade before Miss Saigon and all the rest, I wrote about one child of the dust—that one night became one chapter in an early memoir about my tour in Vietnam. Decades later, that chapter became a short story and was a finalist for the 2007 Chicago Literary Awards.
The fate these children faced was the result of a country without honor running from unfinished business. Don’t let that happen in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Discover that short story: A Night at the “Well of Purity”
His latest novel is Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.
And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to hate and kill Americans.
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