Given the role Vietnam played in his life, in mine, and in this country’s, I thought it might be appropriate to look not to his last words, but — in a sense — to his first words. So, today, I’m returning us to the young Jonathan Schell, the boy who, knowing so little but so terribly open, landed in Vietnam in 1966.
|By: Lisa Derrick Wednesday November 6, 2013 6:43 pm|
There are plenty of conspiracy theories floating around about the assassination of President Kennedy, and some are just as plausible as the Warren Commission’s report of a crazed gunman acting alone. We’ll be exploring these theories on November 25, when television pioneer John Barbour, who interviewed New Orleans District Attorney Jim Garrison about the Kennedy assassination, will be my guest on Firedoglake.com’s Movie Night with special co-host JP Sottile.
|By: dakine01 Tuesday September 10, 2013 4:20 pm|
This lack of trust in the government goes much further back than just the ten years ago run up to invading Iraq based on lies and half truths. It goes back beyond the Gulf of Tonkin “incident.” It goes back beyond the recent admission by the CIA that they helped over throw an elected Iranian government in 1952, installing the Shah; eventually leading to his overthrow, the attack on the US Embassy in Tehran in 1979 and the stand-off between the US and Iran that exists today. I am not a tin-foil wearing conspiracy theorist but these items I have mentioned are not conspiracies, they are facts, albeit often not admitted for decades.
|By: Tom Engelhardt Friday August 16, 2013 5:45 am|
Now that Darth Vader’s breathy techno-voice is a staple of our culture, it’s hard to remember how empty was the particular sector of space Star Wars blasted into. The very day the Paris Peace Accords were signed in 1973, Richard Nixon also signed a decree ending the draft. It was an admission of the obvious: war, American-style, had lost its hold on young minds. As an activity, it was now to be officially turned over to the poor and nonwhite.
Those in a position to produce movies, TV shows, comics, novels, or memoirs about Vietnam were convinced that Americans felt badly enough without such reminders. It was simpler to consider the war film and war toy casualties of Vietnam than to create cultural products with the wrong heroes, victims, and villains.
|By: Norman Solomon Tuesday May 28, 2013 5:25 pm|
Darwin observed that conscience is what most distinguishes humans from other animals. If so, grief isn’t far behind. Realms of anguish are deeply personal—yet prone to expropriation for public use, especially in this era of media hyper-spin. Narratives often thresh personal sorrow into political hay. More than ever, with grief marketed as a civic commodity, the personal is the politicized.
|By: Tom Engelhardt Tuesday April 9, 2013 2:00 pm|
They call it the “spring swoon.” For the third straight year, the American economy bounded out of the starting blocks, adding hundreds of thousands of jobs in January and February. And for the third year in a row, that momentum melted away in the spring like the last traces of winter snow. Employers added only 88,000 jobs this March, the Labor Department announced on Friday, the worst monthly jobs report since June. Economists predicted gains of at least twice as much, and the news fed fears that the economy’s modest recovery might be faltering. And this before we’ve even felt the real effect of the “sequester,” those $85 billion across-the-board budget cuts recently approved by Congress and President Obama.
|By: Arthur Goldwag Saturday March 23, 2013 1:59 pm|
Wiener’s new book How We Forgot the Cold War is a travelogue of visits to sites across the US (plus one in Cuba and one in Grenada) where the Cold War is publicly commemorated. As different as they are—among them are half a dozen presidential libraries, a general’s tomb, missile silos, a VIP fallout shelter, a CIA museum that’s closed to the public, and a proposed $100 million Victims of Communism museum, a grandiose project that was never built—all of them are notable for a curious lacuna: the Cold War itself, or perhaps more accurately, the neo-conservative, triumphalist narrative about the Cold War that has been so successfully projected onto the memory of Ronald Reagan.
|By: Phoenix Woman Sunday March 17, 2013 7:00 am|
indsight tells us that keeping Nixon out of the White House by exposing him as a traitor would have almost certainly stopped, or at the very least seriously hindered, the efforts of Nixon’s Big Business patrons to undo the New Deal. 1968 was barely twenty years after the end of World War II, and there were a number of people still alive who remembered quite well how Republicans and conservative business titans tried to topple President Franklin Delano Roosevelt by coup and later tried to sabotage his actions against Nazi Germany. With Nixon down in flames and taking the GOP with him, the Vietnam War would have ended much sooner than otherwise would have happened (sparing a few million Vietnamese and Americans from maiming and death).
|By: Norman Solomon Thursday March 7, 2013 11:05 am|
Stringent “background checks” are central to many proposals for curbing gun violence. The following is a background check on the nation’s largest buyer of firearms:
The applicant, U.S. Pentagon, seeks to purchase a wide variety of firearms in vast quantities. This background check has determined that the applicant has a long history of assisting individuals, organizations and governments prone to gun violence.
|By: Tom Engelhardt Thursday January 31, 2013 7:03 pm|
Barack Obama arrived in Washington in 2009 buoyed by the slogan “change we can believe in.” The bitter Hagel hearings will be a fierce reminder that, when it comes to foreign policy, old is new, and the words “change” and “Washington” don’t belong in the same sentence. It remains something of an irony that, whether it’s John Kerry or Chuck Hagel, what little breathing room exists in the corridors of power can be credited to a now-ancient war whose realities, as Nick Turse reminds us.