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Old 09-18-2017, 12:33 AM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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Ken Burns new "The Vietnam War" documentary on PBS

Anyone watching this? I thought the first episode was a little disjointed, jumping around in timeframes, but still a good setup for what is to come, I suspect.

Better set your DVR, because it's not once per week-- it's every night this week, which is a lot of watching to do in real time.
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Old 09-18-2017, 12:40 AM
Beckdawrek Beckdawrek is offline
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Wow..I didn't get to see it all tonite..but I know I will love it..I set the dvr..so I can watch the rest tomarrow afternoon..I am just crazy for Ken Burns work!!
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Old 09-18-2017, 07:05 AM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is online now
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I can't watch it right now. Maybe someday. That was a very painful time. My late husband was there as a Medevac helicopter pilot and came home disabled. The disability he acquired there is what eventually killed him-- years later, but too young. Even the ads for the show made me queasy.

But I'm very glad it's showing and that people are watching it, especially people who were little kids (or not born yet) when it was going on. Those were grim days.
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Old 09-18-2017, 07:35 AM
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I've heard at least 5 interviews of him and Novick - Fresh Air, the WTF Podcast and a few others. I value his documentaries but am not sure when I will actually be ready for 18 hours of immersion into this situation.
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Old 09-18-2017, 07:52 AM
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I watched it. Maybe a little bit disjointed (emphasis on little) when they chose to insert the American veteran recollections of combat experiences at times while the documentary is providing historic background info about the French and the Japanese occupations. But otherwise, every bit as good as what we've come to expect.
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Old 09-18-2017, 08:29 AM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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Originally Posted by ThelmaLou View Post
I can't watch it right now. Maybe someday. That was a very painful time. My late husband was there as a Medevac helicopter pilot and came home disabled. The disability he acquired there is what eventually killed him-- years later, but too young. Even the ads for the show made me queasy.
My sympathies. My uncle was also a helicopter medevac pilot in Vietnam. He was, luckily, unscathed physically. He seemed also to be OK mentally, although one never knows for sure. He did have some harrowing stories to tell, though!! He passed away a few years ago of natural causes, and I suspect he was quite a bit older than your late husband.
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Old 09-18-2017, 09:33 AM
Beckdawrek Beckdawrek is offline
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I did not understand the problems of the region was 30yrs in the making..And that 5 potus' were involved...Wow!
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Old 09-18-2017, 10:43 AM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is online now
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My sympathies. My uncle was also a helicopter medevac pilot in Vietnam. He was, luckily, unscathed physically. He seemed also to be OK mentally, although one never knows for sure. He did have some harrowing stories to tell, though!! He passed away a few years ago of natural causes, and I suspect he was quite a bit older than your late husband.
Condolences on your uncle. My husband would have turned 78 this year. He said that the experience didn't mess him up mentally because his mission was always clear: to rescue and save the wounded, and that included not just our soldiers, but the VC soldiers, and civilians as well. Killing people was not part of his mission-- saving them was his focus.

The stress levels were comparable to combat troops, and he certainly got shot AT, but there wasn't the internal conflict about why the USA was there in the first place. He knew why HE was there. When he got back he did get spit on a few times and called "baby killer." They were grim times. The military was in disfavor, and that situation was not corrected until the first Gulf War when the Viet Nam vets started coming out of the woodwork and being recognized.
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Old 09-18-2017, 11:16 AM
TriPolar TriPolar is online now
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I'll get to it. I have to take Burns' documentaries in pieces because they can be somewhat slow and dry. In this case it may be worth it, this war has been covered extensively at the headline level, centered around the well publicized events happening here in the US, this will be worth it if it goes into depth on the early years of our involvement in SE Asia and the politics of both the South and North in Vietnam.
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Old 09-18-2017, 11:24 AM
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Because of the advanced hype for this doc, I actually went back this weekend and started watching his WWII documentary, The War. So it will be a bit before I get to Vietnam. I hope it will be available streaming on some platform in the next few months if it isn't already.
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Old 09-18-2017, 11:40 AM
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I'll get to it. I have to take Burns' documentaries in pieces because they can be somewhat slow and dry. In this case it may be worth it, this war has been covered extensively at the headline level, centered around the well publicized events happening here in the US, this will be worth it if it goes into depth on the early years of our involvement in SE Asia and the politics of both the South and North in Vietnam.
You might also like that there is considerably more of the Vietnam side in this one than is typical of American made documentaries on the war, and by that I mean history from both the north and south of Vietnam. I didn't pay full attention to the first episode (was doing something else with it on in the background) but I did learn a few new things about the backstory and lead up to the war.

Last edited by Broomstick; 09-18-2017 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 09-18-2017, 01:16 PM
Rick Kitchen Rick Kitchen is offline
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I was very disappointed to see that major funding came from one of the Koch brothers.
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Old 09-18-2017, 01:42 PM
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I did not understand the problems of the region was 30yrs in the making..And that 5 potus' were involved...Wow!
Longer than that. The first episode starts with the French attack and occupation of Da Nang in 1858.

It then jumps to Hồ Ch Minh's petition in 1919 to President Woodrow Wilson at the Versailles peace talks for recognition of the civil rights of the Vietnamese people in French Indochina (which was ignored).

This was news to me. I didn't realize that the conflict actually went back to more than a century before the first American deaths in Vietnam in 1959.
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Old 09-18-2017, 01:48 PM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is online now
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For those of you who are watching the show, I'm appreciating the "I didn't know THAT!" stuff that you're sharing. Please tell us more. I don't claim to know much about Viet Nam.

I've read that Kennedy was looking for a way out when he was killed. Maybe that will be addressed in the series someplace.
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Old 09-18-2017, 02:04 PM
I Love Me, Vol. I I Love Me, Vol. I is offline
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I see that the first episode is available to stream online. Will all of them be available online at pbs.org?
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Old 09-18-2017, 02:27 PM
Rick Kitchen Rick Kitchen is offline
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Originally Posted by ThelmaLou View Post
For those of you who are watching the show, I'm appreciating the "I didn't know THAT!" stuff that you're sharing. Please tell us more. I don't claim to know much about Viet Nam.

I've read that Kennedy was looking for a way out when he was killed. Maybe that will be addressed in the series someplace.
Truman contributed more than $300 million to the French in their fight against the Viet Minh insurgents, and painted US insignia over on planes and used civilian crews to drop supplies into Dienbienphu to support the French during the siege.
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Old 09-18-2017, 02:29 PM
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One other "I didn't know that" - "Viet Cong" means "Traitors to the Vietnamese people". It was used by the South Vietnamese as a derogatory term.
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Old 09-18-2017, 02:31 PM
manson1972 manson1972 is offline
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I thought I heard that the reason we supported the French was because the US was afraid of France joining the Soviet sphere of influence after WWII if we didn't support them. Did I hear that right?
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Old 09-18-2017, 02:47 PM
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I thought I heard that the reason we supported the French was because the US was afraid of France joining the Soviet sphere of influence after WWII if we didn't support them. Did I hear that right?
That's what DeGaulle threatened, but I can't imagine DeGaulle's ego ever allowing that to happen.
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Old 09-18-2017, 02:50 PM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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I didn't know that we were rather chummy with Ho Chi Min in the early days, but I can't say I am surprised. That seems to be a recurring problem with the US.
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Old 09-18-2017, 03:04 PM
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One other "I didn't know that" - "Viet Cong" means "Traitors to the Vietnamese people". It was used by the South Vietnamese as a derogatory term.
To be fair, it apparently had multiple meanings...
The term Việt cộng appeared in Saigon newspapers beginning in 1956. It is a contraction of Việt Nam Cộng-sản (Vietnamese communist), or alternatively Việt gian cộng sản ("Communist Traitor to Vietnam").
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viet_Cong#Names
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Old 09-18-2017, 03:25 PM
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They said Ho Chi Min. Called the people Viet Mein (msp)..it meant 'the people'..I remember thinking in the late 60s and 70s..that he was s brutal savage..apparently that wasn't so...at first any way...the French had so much to do with people being unhappy with their situation...I can't believe I never heard that back during the war..There was al
ot of war talk in my house..because My daddy was a Marine..and my brother were the drafting age..Daddy made them both join the corps before they were drafted.tho'..Both lived thru the war.

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Old 09-18-2017, 04:24 PM
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I watched it. Maybe a little bit disjointed (emphasis on little) when they chose to insert the American veteran recollections of combat experiences at times while the documentary is providing historic background info about the French and the Japanese occupations. But otherwise, every bit as good as what we've come to expect.
My first reaction to those inserts was the same - "That seems a little odd, to jump to an American talking about 1967 when we were just examining the French response to the Viet Minh" - but I eventually gathered how the specific 1960s stories directly related to what had been going on historically. I thought Burns did a great job with that.

It was maddening to hear diplomats and military figures from Indochina in the 1920s or 40s or 50s say the exact same things we heard once we realized we couldn't win the war in the 1970s. All the signs were there, nobody wanted to read them.

Last edited by Uncle Jocko; 09-18-2017 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 09-18-2017, 05:19 PM
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I was very disappointed to see that major funding came from one of the Koch brothers.
Why? His cash is green. Perhaps you can increase (or begin) your contributing to PBS to make his not needed.
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Old 09-18-2017, 05:24 PM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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Condolences on your uncle. My husband would have turned 78 this year. He said that the experience didn't mess him up mentally because his mission was always clear: to rescue and save the wounded, and that included not just our soldiers, but the VC soldiers, and civilians as well. Killing people was not part of his mission-- saving them was his focus.

The stress levels were comparable to combat troops, and he certainly got shot AT, but there wasn't the internal conflict about why the USA was there in the first place. He knew why HE was there. When he got back he did get spit on a few times and called "baby killer." They were grim times. The military was in disfavor, and that situation was not corrected until the first Gulf War when the Viet Nam vets started coming out of the woodwork and being recognized.
I often forget that my father was in the war. He was a career Navy guy, and was actually stationed in Viet Nam for a full year, but it was really early in the war (1962), so not much actual fighting was going on for the US. Although we always moved around wherever he was stationed, for that year we went and lived with my grandfather. I was in 2nd grade at the time, so I don't remember a whole lot about it and my dad never talked about it either. I think it was pretty routine for an overseas stationing. I think he saw more "action" in the Korean War, but that was before I was born. My uncle, who was married to my dad's younger sister, was in it during the real part of the war. He was evacuating wounded out of the firing zones.

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Old 09-18-2017, 07:59 PM
blondebear blondebear is online now
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In war, no one wins or loses,there's only destruction. Only those who have never fought like to argue about who won or lost.
Pretty much sums it up right there.

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Old 09-18-2017, 08:35 PM
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I still have such vivid memories of the late-1980s PBS documentary (directed by Stanley something? I was just a teenager), it feels too soon to me for another one. But apparently it is time -- that's cool.
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Old 09-18-2017, 08:37 PM
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ETA -- Stanley Kernow, and it was 1983! I was thirteen. Hard to believe it's been that long.
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Old 09-18-2017, 08:43 PM
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Very interesting show. Learning a lot. I was a few years too young to worry about having to go as it turned out. Learning about the French involvement before the US went in was eye opening. I watched the Burns films on the Civil and Second World War and this one seems to be of equal quality.
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Old 09-18-2017, 10:32 PM
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Very good tonight..I just can't believe all the work by volunteers and military personnel that was done...all for naught, or so it seems. The people wanted to be heard and the west just didn't get it..Not for lack of trying IMO. Then of course the communist came sweeping in..so sad. It's no telling what that country could've been. I am not sure how it is there now..I assume like other communist countries.
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Old 09-18-2017, 11:20 PM
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I felt the foreshadowing that Burns did in the first episode, when he would make a point to how the past would be replayed and replayed, was really powerful.
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Old 09-19-2017, 12:41 AM
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My first reaction to those inserts was the same - "That seems a little odd, to jump to an American talking about 1967 when we were just examining the French response to the Viet Minh" - but I eventually gathered how the specific 1960s stories directly related to what had been going on historically. I thought Burns did a great job with that.

It was maddening to hear diplomats and military figures from Indochina in the 1920s or 40s or 50s say the exact same things we heard once we realized we couldn't win the war in the 1970s. All the signs were there, nobody wanted to read them.
Yeah, the episode was even titled Dj Vu, and I was discussing the episode with my wife before it sunk in.

I had known about the history of the French in Vietnam, but was surprised to learn the name of the Bnh Xuyn and through reading outside of the show how the French used that paramilitary/gang against their adversaries.

Though, my "wow, I didn't know that!" moment came tonight. I didn't know how much of a complete bastard Diệm and his family were. I was always a bit mystified as to why the coup happened. Tonight's episode made that pretty damn clear.

ThelmaLou they also covered Kennedy's contribution tonight. It ended with LBJ's ascension. Much like LBJ, he wanted to end our entanglement, but couldn't see how to do that while still appearing to be fighting and wining against Communism. In that political climate and state of world affairs, there aren't any magic bullets. Kennedy felt that he was cooked if he faltered in support of the South Vietnamese government, LBJ felt he was cooked if he lost the war he (kind of) inherited. It looks like the same side of the coin to me for those two. I'd give Nixon the same leeway if he didn't pretend to have a plan to end it, while planning to extend it.
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Old 09-19-2017, 10:03 AM
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Just started watching last night. I surfed across it, stayed for < 60 seconds and decided I wasnt going anywhere literally captivated by the show. My dad fought over there and talked about it often. However, I was a ~young kid and didnt have any interest at the time. I still dont have a ton of an interest in my (late) fathers perspective because I shy away from tales of violence. But as an older man, Im very curious about the history, PR and politics.

I'm learning a lot. I knew practically nothing about what was presented tonight.

For me, the most moving part of the episode occurred when they played a tape of JFK discussing how he felt about the coup. I found it horrifying and comforting at the same time. I was comforted by the fact that hed documented the USAs involvement. I was horrified with his affirmation of our support in removing Diệm. I was again comforted by the remorse JFK shared on the tape.

Another point of enlightenment was one of the enlisted Americans commenting that "Ours may have been the last generation to think their government would never lie to them."

Im looking forward to watching more, though its going to be a visual, intellectual and temporal commitment.
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Old 09-19-2017, 10:38 AM
John Mace John Mace is offline
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I'm sure it's no accident, but the eery similarity between what our "leaders" were telling us in 1963 and what we heard in 2004 and even today was shockingly brutal. There was even a mention of "In just 6 more months, we'll have won and be out of here". I'm no neophyte to this, and I know the whole things was highly politicized, but it's still very disheartening to here it again.

Last edited by John Mace; 09-19-2017 at 10:38 AM.
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Old 09-19-2017, 01:15 PM
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I was looking up John Paul Vann online last night, and came across an interview with Neil Sheehan, where Sheehan quoted him as talking to a general, where the general told him "I think we'll probably have all of this rapped up and out of here in six months," and Vann replied, "I'm more optimistic, General, I don't think we'll be kicked out for at least seven or eight months."
  #36  
Old 09-19-2017, 02:22 PM
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I was very disappointed to see that major funding came from one of the Koch brothers.
David Koch donates a LOT to charities, including PBS. It's not that he's philanthropic, just that he likes the tax write-off. The book Dark Money covers it very well.

But back to the series. We watched the first episode last night and found it historically interesting. I felt more apprehensive than I thought I would. I was a Navy Seabee in that shitfest, stationed on a Marine base. Technically a REMF, but we took regular incoming rocket fire and I saw five of my cohorts medivaced with multiple shrapnel injuries. I'm really not sure what my reaction will be to subsequent episodes, as I don't think many escape a war zone without some sort of mental trauma.
  #37  
Old 09-20-2017, 03:57 AM
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I've only seen the first episode but like many others upthread it was incredibly informative. I did shout many expletives out loud during the episode, because knowing what comes down the road made some of the critical decisions seem even more egregious than they actually were.

I wish they had explained why the French invaded Da Nang in 1858. I had always assumed the French presence there built up in a similar manner to the British presence in India. Nope. I mean, yes, there was significant trade throughout the 18th Century, but apparently the Da Nang invasion was ordered by Napoleon III to prevent Catholic missionaries from being expelled.

The other interesting thing to me is how all-consuming the fear and perceived threat of Communism was. I was born in 1967, so by the time I had any awareness of world politics the Cold War was entering its final stages. To me, the zeitgeist was less focused on Communism as a threat, and more focused on the Soviet Union as the predominant threat to the US. I guess having the two largest nations in Asia fall under the sway of Communism would certainly have been alarming, but some of the figures in the documentary sounded as if they honestly thought the ideology was just going to sweep over the entire world if unchecked in Asia. It's a kind of paranoia I find it difficult to wrap my head around.

Oddly enough, I'm also finishing the first season of Narcos, and the way the CIA is so focused on the Communist threat in Colombia in that show seemed almost comical to me. Now I can see it as the remnants of this same entrenched terror that started after WWII.

I'll definitely be watching every episode of this series. Viet Nam is such a fundamental component of the American psyche that I wish we had more thoroughly and openly dealt with the after-effects long ago. I think our collective repression of the deep wounds that war caused us all has allowed a kind of sepsis to sink into our society. It is not at all difficult to trace so many of our societal ills directly back to the injuries caused by our engagement over there.
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Old 09-20-2017, 02:28 PM
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I've only seen the first episode but like many others upthread it was incredibly informative. I did shout many expletives out loud during the episode, because knowing what comes down the road made some of the critical decisions seem even more egregious than they actually were. <snip>
My opinion of JFK sure took a nosedive in the second episode. He was recorded telling someone that pulling out of Vietnam was not an option because it would harm his chances for reelection. What about the chances for a life for a million and a half people, motherfucker? Fucking politicians.
  #39  
Old 09-20-2017, 05:35 PM
TreacherousCretin TreacherousCretin is offline
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Why? His cash is green. Perhaps you can increase (or begin) your contributing to PBS to make his not needed.
I think I read that he's a science geek, which is why his name appears before many (most?) of the PBS shows I watch. I can't say it disappoints me to see it, but the disconnect (uber rightwing bazillionaire supporting PBS programming) is a bit jarring.
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Old 09-20-2017, 06:24 PM
River Hippie River Hippie is offline
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Every episode so far has been extremely informative and eye opening. I had no idea how bad the South Vietnamese leadership was. One question I have, and it may have been covered (and I missed it), is whether there was protest in France of French involvement in SV. Were there protests there? If so, every aspect of America's involvement was foreshadowed if we had studied what happened with the French.

I will certainly be watching the rest of the series.
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Old 09-20-2017, 07:10 PM
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Every episode so far has been extremely informative and eye opening. I had no idea how bad the South Vietnamese leadership was. One question I have, and it may have been covered (and I missed it), is whether there was protest in France of French involvement in SV. Were there protests there? If so, every aspect of America's involvement was foreshadowed if we had studied what happened with the French.

I will certainly be watching the rest of the series.
The first episode talked about longshoremen in Marseilles protesting the French involvement, I'm not sure of other protests.
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Old 09-20-2017, 10:42 PM
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I think I read that he's a science geek, which is why his name appears before many (most?) of the PBS shows I watch. I can't say it disappoints me to see it, but the disconnect (uber rightwing bazillionaire supporting PBS programming) is a bit jarring.
He has withheld donations in the past when PBS airs anything that goes against the Koch political or financial philosophy. He also donates to Lincoln Center and other art endeavors. Seems odd, I know.
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Old 09-21-2017, 10:37 PM
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Spotted a footage error. In what was supposed to be footage from the early to mid-1960s, there is a Marine carrying an attached M-203, which was not introduced to the military until the 70s. The standalone version, the M-79 grenade launcher, was standard issue.
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Old 09-21-2017, 10:43 PM
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Spotted a footage error. In what was supposed to be footage from the early to mid-1960s, there is a Marine carrying an attached M-203, which was not introduced to the military until the 70s. The standalone version, the M-79 grenade launcher, was standard issue.
You sure it's not an XM148? Those were in service from end of 1966 until being replaced by the M203 in 1969.
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Old 09-22-2017, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by carlb View Post
The other interesting thing to me is how all-consuming the fear and perceived threat of Communism was. I was born in 1967, so by the time I had any awareness of world politics the Cold War was entering its final stages. To me, the zeitgeist was less focused on Communism as a threat, and more focused on the Soviet Union as the predominant threat to the US. I guess having the two largest nations in Asia fall under the sway of Communism would certainly have been alarming, but some of the figures in the documentary sounded as if they honestly thought the ideology was just going to sweep over the entire world if unchecked in Asia. It's a kind of paranoia I find it difficult to wrap my head around.
You would have to go back to WW2 and look at the news reel footage of the map of Europe going Nazi. That was pretty much Russia and China were viewed, country after country rolled over and went communist, back when Russia and the US were technology peers. The USA, pretty much eked out a tie in Korea, spent god knows how much keeping Western Europe from declaring for the Russians, as they were not going to do WW1 redux with nukes.

Vietnam is where the Russians were stopped, Nicaragua was where they were contained, and Afganistan is where they were rolled back. Everyone backs a winner, and for a time Russia looked like a winner, and they spent rubles like a drunken sailor keeping the world in a revolutionary fever.
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  #46  
Old 09-22-2017, 03:51 PM
robby robby is offline
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I just read this article from the Washington Post entitled "Meet Lynn Novick." The subtitle is: "The Vietnam War co-director has been making movies with Ken Burns for decades. Why is only one of them famous?"

Reading the article, it is apparent why Lynn Novick is credited as co-director. For example, she conducted most of the interviews, not Ken Burns. What really surprised me, though, was the last sentence of this paragraph:

Quote:
Burns credits Novick with the insight that The Vietnam War would have to be shot in Vietnam as well as in the United States. And when it came time for their first trip, Novick ended up taking the lead on the Vietnamese half of the project after Burns had surgery for kidney stones and his doctors advised him not to travel. He never made it to Vietnam.
  #47  
Old 09-22-2017, 07:40 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asuka View Post
You sure it's not an XM148? Those were in service from end of 1966 until being replaced by the M203 in 1969.
Wow, good catch. I've never seen one of those, though I fam-fired the M-79 during weapons training in 1968 prior to going to Da Nang. Come to think of it, I never even saw an M-16 until the day I arrived there. They handed one to me and told me to "figure it out".
  #48  
Old 09-23-2017, 11:10 PM
tim314 tim314 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Kitchen View Post
I was very disappointed to see that major funding came from one of the Koch brothers.
One of my physics professors in school got a bunch of research funding from the Department of Defense. Someone once asked him if he had any ethical qualms about where the money came from. He replied, "Would you prefer they used it to buy more bombs?"

I just wish the Koch family would spend all their money on historical documentaries.
  #49  
Old 09-24-2017, 12:22 AM
Beckdawrek Beckdawrek is offline
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I would've like to have heard from more historians on the French involvement..but I love every thing Burns does generally. And I love military history.
  #50  
Old 09-24-2017, 11:13 AM
Athabasca Athabasca is offline
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A Few WTF moments

I watched the latest instalment last night, This Is what we do, and it by far has the most jarring realizations for me at least. It covers the time period 1967-68. What got me the most was first, how outnumbered the Marines apparently were in combat, because much of the US forces In Vietnam according to the documentary, were acting in support capacities, not in combat.

Second, there was apparently a crossover number being promoted by TPTB in Defence where the body count of enemy had to reach a certain number before they could be assured that the enemy weren't going to be replaced. This seems to be a illusory figure because enemy soldiers were being supplemented all the time by civilians, and infiltrations in South Vietnam by Communist disrupters were not abating.

Third, the instability of So. Vietnam, given the corruption of its leaders and the inability of the government to keep the level of dissent from totally undermining their cause, whatever that was. The degree of upheaval in So. Vietnam compared with the cohesion and organization of the No Vietnamese made an American commander declare that the US was fighting on the wrong side. That quote wasn't in the episode This is what we do, but earlier on. You have to wonder, with So. Vietnam so in tatters, what hope did the US have?

Fourth, the extended interview with Musgrave (sorry but I can't remember his first name ) What got me was how he described ambush after ambush after ambush. I was practically writhing on my sofa listening to him.Musgrave described how Vietnam Cong would bait them, then run off. US commanders would order the soldiers to pursue, and Musgrave would beg them not to. He knew it was an ambush. And of course he had to follow orders, and that was when he was injured so badly, the medics gave up on him 3 times, but he survived. US commanders couldn't or wouldn't learn from this? How to avoid ambushes?

Other notes: When a Marine was injured or killed, his fellow soldiers always retrieved the wounded or dead. The Viet Cong routinely picked off the rescuing soldiers.

Viet Cong liked to fight in such close proximity with Americans that when American air cover bombed the VC position, it often killed Americans too. One soldier commented, the VC didn't mind dying.

VC had AK 47s, Soviet-supplied. Good and efficient weapons, reliable. Americans had the newly issued M16 rifle, prone to jamming, unreliable. A lot of soldiers were killed because they couldn't unjam their rifles.

I'm Canadian, and my father and uncle served in WWII. My uncle was bayoneted in Hong Kong by Japanese soldier. A common charge against the British defeat in Hong Kong in 1941was that the weapons issued to soldiers like my uncle were substandard and faulty. A soldier not being able to defend himself with such a basic essential piece of his kit upsets me to no end.

More viewing tonight....

Last edited by Athabasca; 09-24-2017 at 11:15 AM.
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