The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

11 November 2005

Radio Professional's Veterans Day Tribute


St. Louis Radio Vet Recalls Vietnam

On this special day, the Radio Equalizer can't think of a better place to spend time than at Mike Anderson's 1969 Vietnam memories site, found here.

Anderson, a Vietnam vet, former St. Louis radio personality and current publisher of radio information site, has hundreds of photographs and stories from his 1969 tour.

"The memories will be a constantly updated part of the website," Anderson notes. "Thirty-six years after the fact, it's not unusual that not everything comes immediately to mind."

Putting the site together wasn't so easy, he admits.

Mike in 1969"The images were mostly from slides I took in country and I had only seen most of them a couple or three times since I took them.

"The most enlightening part of the process for me was seeing the pictures of the people of South Vietnam. I'd put together two other collections of these photos, but had concentrated on places and things.

"Seeing the faces again was quite an awakening."

An excerpt (above photo is of Anderson):

Good times...

...when this photo was taken in the first week of September 1969. The guy was riding in the back of a 3/4 ton pickup after having hitched a ride back to barracks at Tent City B from downtown Saigon where he had taken pictures and had a beer or two. He was about to turn 21 and go on R&R to Hawaii for a delayed honeymoon with his first wife; he had fewer than 90 days to go in country and he thought he was immortal.

He opposed the Vietnam War, before, during and after; years later he learned that the leftist and media-driven desertion of Southeast Asian seekers of Democracy led to the slaughter of huge numbers of Vietnamese and Cambodians by Communists.

That knowledge changed his politics forever in 1984.

Mike's doing media interviews today, reach him at 314-878-0673.

Also, CNN reports on the dwindling numbers of World War I vets in America today:

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Lloyd Brown remembers Armistice Day in 1918 as few -- ever so few -- veterans can."

For the servicemen there were lots of hugs and kisses," recalls Brown, of Charlotte Hall, Maryland, a teenage seaman aboard the battleship USS New Hampshire, in port stateside when the fighting stopped. "We were so happy that the war was over."

Now 104, Brown adds, "There's not too many of us around any more."No one knows exactly how many of America's World War I veterans will celebrate Veterans Day, which marks the armistice of November 11, 1918, that ended what then was considered the Great War. An estimated 2 million Americans served in Europe after the U.S. entered the war in 1917.

Today, the Veterans Affairs Department lists just eight veterans as receiving disability benefits or pension compensation from service in World War I. It says a few dozen other veterans of the war probably are alive, too, but the government does not keep a comprehensive list.

The Census Bureau stopped asking for data about those veterans years ago. Using a report of 65,000 alive in 1990 as a baseline, the VA estimates that no more than 50 remain, perhaps as few as 30.

How much do most Americans know about World War I? My guess: very little.

Update from Mark Seecof:

Dear Mr. Maloney,

Did you notice how that AP story about WWI vets you linked slants the history of the war to make "our" side look more aggressive?

Here's the relevant excerpt:

World War I, fueled by intense nationalism and conflicting economic and colonial interests, began in the Balkans in 1914 and quickly spread across Europe because of military alliances. The major allied powers were Great Britain, France and Russia, and they were opposed by Germany, Austria-Hungary and a few others.

That paragraph strongly suggests that Great Britain, France, and Russia started the war. It also hides the third major member of the Central Powers, the (moslem) Ottoman Sultanate, under the term "a few others."

In fact, Austria-Hungary and Germany started the war. First they declared war on Serbia and Russia, then Germany declared war on France. Germany invaded neutral Belgium on August 4, 1914 en-route to France. Great Britain entered the war to defend its treaty partner Belgium (at least nominally).

Watch how the AP twists the story thrice in one graf: first the AP says the war "began in the Balkans and quickly spread... because of military alliances." What, like mold on cheese?

Someone started the war, it didn't just appear. That sets up the AP's next distortion, that "The major allied powers were [the USA's future allies]... and they were opposed by [those who actually started the war]." Well, that use of "opposed by" reverses causation.

Oh sure, a Byzantine lawyer can argue that both sides "opposed" the other, but that's not how readers will understand the passage. Finally, the AP omits to mention the Ottoman Sultanate.

Could this be because the AP believes the leader of the religion of peace (the Sultan/Caliph) couldn't possibly have been involved in a devastating war?

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  • Our main tribute in Aussie is Anzac Day, now only one I believe is left of the many WWI vets, on the net:
    while in the USA at:

    By Blogger stackja1945, at 11 November, 2005 22:57  

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