Supporting the Troops?

This is Truly Unconscionable

by Rick Berg

I'm a Vietnam Veteran. I was an enlisted man in the Marine Corps from 1966-1969. I was in-country from early 1968 to 1969.

These SwfitBoatVetsforTruth and John O'Neill demean all Vietnam Vets. Their critique of Kerry's service and awards cast doubt over all of us. Since they bend the truth and since they seem to be in the service of Republican operatives and ideologues, they are less than honorable. They are paid political hacks using their status as Vietnam Vets to slander another Veteran. For a small group of Vietnam Vets to attack another's service in this fashion for these reasons is truly unconscionable.

Finally to set the record straight or just to voice another point of view, for this Vietnam Vet and others what demoralized me the most while I was in country being shot at was not the antiwar activists, it was the knowledge that there were 'fortunate sons' who could, because of wealth and power, avoid service and combat in Vietnam. When friends were killed or maimed, it was not the anti-war kids that made me mad, nor the enemy, it was knowing that a number of boys who were entitled enough to be without conviction or courage would never see combat.

It took thirty years before I knew the names of those fortunate sons. To think that any Vietnam Vet would attack another combat vet to help these men stay in office has depressed me to no end.

The book says peacemakers are blessed not warmongers and war profiteers. Those who've been in combat, those vets with any integrity, know this to be true. Kerry did, and one hopes still does. That he should be attacked for that is beyond belief.

Rick Berg
USMC DaNang 68-69


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