Jane Fonda: a real American Patriot! – Part 2/3

Before calling someone—anyone—a “traitor”, especially Jane Fonda, you should do your homework first.

I fought in Vietnam too (1966, field radio operator, U.S. Marines), but I do not blame Fonda for what she did when she went to North Vietnam, because when she spoke out, she was the voice of America’s conscience and she was not alone—at the time, a vast majority of Americans may have felt the same way she did.

After I came out of my PTSD shell in the early 1980s and stopped drinking, I started to learn the truth about the Vietnam War.

Most American troops went to Vietnam in honor, some came back tainted with innocent blood but many came back untainted but damaged physically and/or mentally as I did with PTSD.

The Vietnam War was based on a lie about the Tonkin Gulf Incident. You may want to read “30-year Anniversary: Tonkin Gulf Lie launched Vietnam War” by Jeff Cohen and Norman Solomon published July 27, 1994. The conclusion of that report says, “We Americans are the ultimate innocents. We are forever desperate to believe that this time the government is telling us the truth.”

On October, 2005 the New York Times reported that Robert J. Hanyok, a historian for the U.S. National Security Agency, had concluded that the NSA deliberately distorted the intelligence reports that it had passed on to policy-makers regarding the August 4, 1964 incident. He concluded that the motive was not political but was probably to cover up honest intelligence errors.

In addition, before President Kennedy was assassinated, his brother Robert later said he was planning to pull out of Vietnam, because he saw it turning into quagmire if we stayed.

Then there is the fact that South Vietnam was ruled by a brutal dictator possibly worse than the leadership in North Vietnam.

And during most of the war, the U.S. leadership ran the war with the concept that we could win the war by killing as many people as possible. and to achieve that goal, the U.S. dropped more bombs than it dropped in all of World War II.

Pete Larson reports that the United States dropped 280 million bombs in Laos alone and that 80 million never exploded. Today, the population of Laos is estimated to be 6.5 million. That equals about 43 bombs dropped for each of today’s citizens in Laos. Do you know how many people lived in Laos during the Vietnam War?

If you click on Yale.edu, you will discover a map of Cambodia that shows where the bombs were dropped on 113,716 sites in 230,516 sorties dropping 2,756,941 tons of ordnance (explosives).

Libcom.org reports, “By the end of the war, 7 million tons of bombs had been dropped on Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia – more than twice the amount of bombs dropped on Europe and Asia in World War II.”

Then there is the history of Vietnam.  For one thousand years, Vietnam was occupied by the Chinese (221 BC – 928 AD) and the Vietnamese resisted and fought to be free.

Then the French arrived in 1859 and occupied Vietnam, and eventually the Vietnamese fought to rid themselves of the French and the Japanese in the first Indochina War (1941 – 1954)

When the French left, the Americans moved into Vietnam in the late 1950s and stayed for almost 20 years. When the U.S. left, the soil was drenched with Agent Orange and millions—in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam combined—had been killed.

Vietnam is America’s shame and it took courage for someone like Jane Fonda to speak up and confront America’s leadership for this crime. The only honorable Americans in Vietnam were troops like your husband and me that went there as patriots believing we were fighting for freedom when the truth is that we were being lied to by our corrupt leaders.

Then there is the CIA and Air America. To this day the CIA denies that Air America was running drugs into the U.S. and supplying weapons to drug lords in the Gold Triangle with the design of creating an armed buffer between Communist China and Southeast Asia.

I refuse to condemn Jane Fonda for standing up to the corruption and lies of America’s leaders. More evidence that supports my opinion will appear in Jane Fonda: a real American Patriot! – Part 3 on February 12, 2013 or you may return/start with Part 1.

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse, a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, is the award winning author of The Concubine Saga.

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.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

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Kill Anything That Moves: Part 1/3

While out driving around and doing some shopping, my wife listened to an interview on NPR with Nick Turse and told me about it. I then did some research on Nick Turse’s book Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam.

I haven’t bought or read the book yet, but I plan to, because the topic is worth reading to see what Turse wrote after his extensive research.

NPR.org reported, “The U.S. government has maintained that atrocities like this were isolated incidents in the conflict. Nick Turse says otherwise. In his book, Turse argues that the intentional killing of civilians was quite common in a war that claimed 2 million civilian lives, with 5.3 million civilians wounded and 11 million refugees.”

Turse takes the high end of the estimate of civilians killed during the Vietnam War. In truth, the estimates range from 245,000 to two million. In Cambodia, there were another 200,000 to 300,000 dead and in Laos 20,000 to 200,000—from bombs dropped by American aircraft, because American troops did not fight in large numbers in Cambodia or Laos.


15:32 minutes

For a comparison, in World War II, it is estimated that 37.5 to 54.5 million civilians were killed, and World War II spanned only six years 1939 – 1945. The Vietnam War lasted nineteen years, five months, four weeks and one day—about three times longer than World War II. In that time, the US dropped more bombs on Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam than it dropped in all of World War II.

I suspect that most of the civilian deaths in Vietnam were caused by bombs dropped by American aircraft.

While I served in Vietnam, I heard of incidents like those Turse writes about, but I suspect that it wasn’t as common as Turse clams. After all, the US fought in Vietnam for almost twenty years and the last decade saw huge increases in troop numbers and the bombs dropped.

In 1959, America had 760 troops in Vietnam. The Gulf of Tonkin incident in August 1964 would change those numbers drastically. By 1963, the US had 16,300 troops in Vietnam and in 1964 there were 23,300. Then in 1965 those numbers reached 184,300. In 1968, the high point of the war, the US had 536,100 troops in Vietnam.

In total, 2.7 million Americans served in uniform in Vietnam. In 1966, I was one of them.

This is what I remember from my tour. We had rules that said we had to see who was shooting at us before we returned fire but we seldom saw who was shooting at us. I had unseen snipers shoot at me a number of times and come very close—one round touched my ear. Our base camp was hit usually at night by mortars and rockets, and it is true that body counts were important to General Westmoreland. At the time, the belief among America’s leaders was that we could kill our way to victory.

Continued on February 2, 2013 in Kill Anything That Moves: Part 2

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse, a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, is the award winning author of The Concubine Saga.

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.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”