The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #67125 Message #1119817
Posted By: Little Hawk
20-Feb-04 - 12:54 AM
Thread Name: BS: Open Letter to John Kerry
Subject: RE: BS: OPEN LETTER TO JOHN KERRY
He's not talking about you, tarheel, and I doubt that he was talking about most American soldiers in Vietnam, but he was referring to things that actually happened and that matter.
Are you aware that in WWII it was pretty routine for American pilots in the Pacific to strafe and kill hundreds of Japanese survivors in the water after ships sank? War crimes. It is also true that the Japanese did the same thing to Allied survivors. There was tremendous brutality on both sides.
Are you aware that American pilots in '44 and '45 were given instructions to freely strafe anything that they considered might be of benefit to the German economy? This included any man, woman, or child they saw, any farm animal in a field, any living thing in effect that moved on German ground aside from a wild animal. And they did it. I read a book about Chuck Yeager. He and one of the other American pilots were talking about it one day, and the guy remarked, "I hope to God we win this war, cos we're in a whole heap of trouble if we don't." Well, they won it, and you don't hear much about that stuff now.
There were lots of American soldiers who, like you, served honorably in Vietnam and in previous wars. There were also bad apples, bad policies, units that went berserk on some occasions, and there were war crimes.
Kerry just happens to be a Democrat, which you don't like, and he happens to have drawn attention to specific incidents that you'd rather not know about or hear about. That doesn't mean you, personally, have been accused by him of anything whatsoever, nor is it a blanket condemnation of American soldiers.
Another thing: At the end of WWII there were any number of German soldiers who had never personally committed war crimes, had served honorably, and some did not believe that their side would or could ever commit war crimes. Sound familiar? Loyalty to flag, unit, and country is a powerful thing, and there are good and honorable men (plenty of them) in ALL armies.