While I never assume to speak on behalf of my brethren in the antiwar veterans' movement, I must also share the fact that within these groups there is a diversity of opinion. My own insight continues to evolve. There is always an impulse to justify one's actions, even among those of us who broke away from the mainstream and joined the opposition during the Vietnam War era.
I am sure that a factual reporting of problems faced by dissenters inside Vietnam is not "egregious." Let the facts speak for themselves. An objective assessment would include the tragic use of military power against the people of Southeast Asia, as well as the understanding that communist governments are authoritarian. We could have found a better way, yes. The Vietnam War was unnecessary, yes. But being in denial about any authoritarian tendencies is also not an effective posturing.
I served in Vietnam, I protested the war vehemently, venomously, with a fierce anger. I also know that I am against authoritarian regimes that commit dissenters to abuse.
St. Petersburg, FLorida
Feb 7 2008 - 12:13pm