Monday, April 30, 2012
Attending my son's orchestra concert this evening in Minnetonka, I noticed the POW/MIA flag on display, a bit smaller and alongside the Stars and Stripes:
It's displayed as a political sop to Vietnam veterans and the families of dead and missing soldiers. We concocted a fable--these get generated in every war--of our enemy's 'unique psychiatric pathology' and 'quintessential evil.'
The flag symbolizes the belief that, to this day, Vietnam holds American servicemen in secret prisons--and as patriotic Americans we must yearn for their release.
This is bullshit. There's no evidence that Vietnam is holding any US personnel, nor is that nation impeding America's effort to repatriate the remains of our dead soldiers. In 1998, the Defense Technical Information Center noted, 'On the issue of recovering and repatriating remains of US personnel, we rate Vietnamese cooperation as excellent.'
The POW/MIA flag is flown to bolster American historical victimology, encouraging people to think Americans were the primary victims of the Vietnam War--that a morally improved Vietnam would grow up and offer us an apology for all the mean stuff they did.
America's intervention in Vietnam was a disastrous foreign policy blunder--and the victims were overwhelmingly Indochinese. Wikipedia: Total civilian dead: – 631,000 – 4,500,000.
The disgraceful POW/MIA rag should be torn to shreds.
Posted by Gavin Sullivan at 8:09 PM