Vietnam Voices features audio clips, history, music, poetry as well as some GI latrine graffiti among which the most memorable was, “This is a war of the unwilling, led by the unqualified, dying for the ungrateful.”
Hear the voices of JFK, LBJ, McNamara, Lodge, Thieu, Cronkite, Fulbright, Morse, Kennan, et al. Music by Joan Baez, Country Joe McDonald, the Rolling Stones and traditional Vietnamese music. Anti-war poems written by GI’s and read by Clark. He talks about how the John Wayne myth of the 19th-century frontier West carried over to Vietnam.
Clark discusses the infamous 1964 Gulf of Tonkin resolution which paved the way for massive U.S. intervention. This program includes audio of the historic 5 August 1965 CBS News report by Morley Safer on the burning of Cam Ne village, the notorious zippo lighter incident. Safer reported, “This is what the war in Vietnam is all about. An officer told me he had orders to go in and level a string of hamlets surrounding Cam Ne village.”
Recorded as part of David Barsamian’s Ganges to the Nile program on KGNU.
Recorded at KGNU.
John Clark Pratt was in the Air Force from 1954-1974, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. He served in Vietnam and Laos. He was the author of The Laotian Fragments, and Vietnam Voices: Perspectives on the War Years 1941-1982, which was called “perhaps the best one-volume introduction to the literature of the war.” He taught at Colorado State University. He died in 2017.