tv Democracy Now LINKTV March 16, 2018 3:00pm-4:01pm PDT
03/16/18 03/16/18 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] y: fropacica, this is democracy now! >> my father who was in his 80's was injured. i laid very still in the mud as if i was dead and i glanced at him. i saw him, but i'd cannot speak to him in fear they might hear me and shoot me. i wanted to yell at him to lay down and maybe they won't shoot agaiut him and shot half of his head away. amy: 50 years ago today on march
16, 1968, u.s. soldiers slaughtered 500 vtne women, children, and old men. one soldier said he was ordered to kill anything that breathed. we will look back at this horrific day and speak to an american peace activist and two vietnam war veterans who have returned to vietnam to mark the 50th anniversary of my lai and to remember the role of gi resistance in stopping the vietnam wa >> we want to commemorate and to respect the terrible, terrible massacre and the sacrifice that the vietnamese suffered those years ago, and to come as service people, as veterans to sorry, we take responsibility, and we will continue to work for peace. amy: today, a democracy now! special. my lai sorry, we take responsibility, and we will massacre remembed.
all that and more, coming up. welcome to democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. special counsel robert mueller has subpoenaed the trump organization to hand over documents -- some of which are related to russia a widens the scope of his investigation into alleged ties between top trump officials and russia. the revelation indicates that mueller's probe is likely to continue for at least several more months. last summer, president trump told "the new york times" mueller would be crossing a red line if he investigates trump family finances. this comes as democrats on the house intelligence committee said thursday the trump on aivg a deal wh a sanctioned russian bank during 20 psideial campaign. the charge stands in stark contrast to a conclusion reached by republican leaders of the committee earlier this week, who declared they found no evidence of collusion between trump's campaign and the russians. meanwhile, the trump administration placed new sanctions against russia thursday, accusing moscow of launching cyber-attacks that
compromised security at facilities critical to u.s. infrastructure, including water supplies, aviation, the electric grid, and nuclear power plants. the administration says russian hackers gained access that could have allowed them to sabotage or shutdownacilies at will. the new sanctions come amid rising tensions between russia and the u.s. and its allies. this week, britain accused russia of launching the first chemical weapons attack on european soil since world war ii, over the alleged poisoning of russian spy sergei skripal and his daughter in salisbury last week. russia said today it's prepared to retaliate against western sanctions, saying it will expand a blacklist of americans and will expel british diplomats from embassies and consulates rsia. in miami, florida, authorities say at least six people have died after a pedestrian bridge under construction collapsed onto a busy street below, crushing vehicles and trapping victims under huge piles of
concrete. at least nine others were injured in the collapse of the nearly 200 foot-long bridge under construction under the campus of orida inteational university. police say they don't know the cause of the collapse and are enlisting the help of engineers as they investigate the disaster as a possible homicide. in syria come over 10,000 civilians have fled the damascus suburb of eastern ghouta over the past as syrian government 24 hours forces continued a bloody offensive against the rebel-held territory. syrian ground forces have split the territory in three, with many observers predicting a government victory over the rebels is imminent. the offensive has killed well over 1000 civilians in less than a month. among the latest victims were 12 civilians who reportedly died in a russian airstrike today. as well as photojournalist bashar al-attar, who died from injuries he sustained in a march 12 airstrike. meanwhile, human rights groups say residents have fled from over 10,000 homes in the
northern syrian city of afrin in cent days, athedish popation fls an offensive by turkey's military. in brazil, tens of thousands of people filled the streets of rio de janeiro thursday to protest the apparent assassination of 38-year-old city councilmemb and human rights activist marielle franco. franco died along with her driver wednesday not after a pair of gunmen riddled her car with bullets. franco was a fierce critic of police killings in brazil's impoverished favela neighborhoods. the night before her death, franco wrote on twitter -- "how many more must die for this war to end?" in january alone, state government figures show police killed 154 people in rio sta franco's muer came a month after president michel temer ordered brazil's military to assume control of police duties in rio. in massachusetts, civil righ groups filed a petition thursday
asking the court to stop immigration agents from arresting people at courthouses, saying it violates the rights of defendants, victims, and witnesses, as well as the accused. the case is the first of its kind, and comes as legal aid society attorneys protested thursday in new york city. this is jared trujillo. >> i am an attorney at the legal aid society. internees courts with something caeddministrative warrants. they are not issued by a judge. there issued solely by ice. ice is effectively writing their own warrants to come into the courts. what we are asking is that they not be allowed to come into the court withjuci warrant signed by a judge. amy: philippines president rodrigo duterte says he will pull his country out of the international criminal court. the announcement came just after the icc opened an investigati and accusations he is committed crimes against humanity by overseeing the killing of up to 8000 people in his so-called war on drugs.
duterte has repeatedly boasted he has personally murdered drug dealers. president dold trump has expressed admiration for duterte, saying he has done a "unbelievable job on the drug problem." this comes as politico reports that trump is expected to formally call for capital punishment for drug dealers when he unveils his plan for combating the opioid epidemic during a planned trip to new hampshire next week. president trump boasted to wealthy republican donors on wednesday that he made up a claim about trade deficits during a recent private conversation he had with canadian prime minister stintru. indirecording obtained by "the washington post," trump is reportedly heard telling the donors that he insisted to trudeau that the u.s. has a trade deficit with canada, even though he was completely unsure about whether the statement was true. inact, the u. has a trade surplus with canada. on thursday, trump repeated the lie tweeting -- , "we do have a trade deficit with canada, as we do with almost all countries, some of em massive." the white house is denying media reports that president trump is poised to fire national security
adviser lieutenant general h.r. mcmaster ahead of a planned u.s.-north korea summit in may. trump is reportedly considering with johnmcmaster bolton. bolton is a foreign policy hawk who suggested the u.s. military should directly engage iran and north korea. he once said if the yuan headquarters lost 10 stories, "it would not make it bit of difference." the position of national security adviser does not require senate confirmation. in an update to a story we covered on tuesday about president trump's pick to head the cia, gina haspel, roku book a -- propublica has retracted part of its reporting, which we cited, about haspel's role at a secret cia black site in thailand where prisoners were tortured. propublica is now reporting haspel was not yet based at the site when abu zubaydah was wateoarded 8times andid
not ck the psoner whe he was beg tortur. but acrding tothe new rk tis," hasp did oveee the wateoarding another proner, abal-rahim -nashiriat the sect prison gina haspel also lat advocated for destroying videotapes of zubaydah's waterboarding. in new york, former black panther herman bell has been granted parole after 44 years in prison for the killing of two police officers. bell pleaded not guilty at trial and has said witness coercion and prosecutorial misconduct led to his conviction. his expected release date is april 17. in their decision to release bell, who is now 69 years old, parole board members cited a noteworthy letter from it and in person -- an un-named person -- likely the son of one of the victims, officer waverly jones. he wrote of bell's release -- "the simple answer is it would bring joy and peace as we have publicly.
on the other hand, to deny him parole again would cause us pain as we are reminded of the painful episode each time he appears before the board." in new york city, hundreds of protesters marched through the streets of manhattan thursday in support of farm workers with the coalition of immokalee workers, who are demanding that fast food git wendy's sign on to a worker-designed code of conduct that includes a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment and abuse in the fields where they pick tomatoes. the marchers passed outside manhattan office of billionaire nelson peltz, the board chair and largest shareholder at wendy's, before rallying near the united nations building, where workers broke a five-day fast. this is immokalee worker and hunger striker nely rodriguez. thatat we're asking is nelson peltz promises that wendy's will join the fair food program, which is a program recognized for ending sexual violence and slavery in the agricultural fields of florida. another thing we would like to say to nelson peltz and wendy's
is that we are not doing this for the money. do notan association, receive a bonus. the money spent from the corporation to the farmers in the farmers are responsible for distributing the extra sent to the farm workers. wendy's is lying somewhere doing this for the money. they are lying to the false good of conduct that does not include the voice of the workers. amy: and in mexico, thousands of women from across the world coerged in zatista tertory in the southern state of chiapas over the weekend for the first international political, artistic, sports and cultural thering ofomen that struggle. this is a patista won deliring a colctive messe at the clongony. >> this little light is for you. take it, sister. take it to the women who are disappeared. take it to the murdered. t in ison. take it to the raped. take it to the beaten. take it to be abused.
take it to the women who face violence in all forms. take it tohe mrant take it to the exploited. take it to the dead. take it until it in every one of them that she is not alone, that you're going to fight for her, that you're going to fight for the truth and for the justice that her pain deserves. amy: and those are some of the ths yn.orge war and peace rert. i'm amy odman. day weegin a scial sers looking ck at 68, a pital year in dern amecan histy. it was aear thataw the asssinatioof d marti luthering and bert knedy, historictudent sikes fro columbia tsan fransco stat e soviet iasion of czechoslovia, the icago mocratic cvention otests, and the eslation othe etnam war. 50 yearsgo todayn march , 1968u.s. soldierattackedhe vietmese villa of my l. u.s. troops arrived at 7:30 a.m.
even though the soldiers met no resistance, they slaughtered more than 500 vietnamese women, children, and old men over the next four hours in what became known as the my lai massacre. the soldiers raped women. they burned their houses. they mutilated the villagers bodies. one u.s. soldier said he was ordered to "kill anything that breathed." memorials have been held today in my lai to mark the 50th anniversary. survivors gathered to describe the horror of what happened on 1968. 170 people and they shot them all dead. they shot them all. they shot once. they took one minute break and the second him of any third time. my father, who was in his 80's, was injured in tomlin and then crawling. i lay very still in the mud as the second him of any thirdif i was dead. i glanced at him. i saw him, but i dare not speak
to him in fear they might hear me and shoot me. i wanted to ll him to lay down and maybe they won't shoot again. but they noticed him and shot half of his head away. amy: after the massacre, the u.s. military then attempted to cover up what happened. but in november of 1969, a young reporter named seymour hersh would reveal a 26-year-old soldier named william calley was being investigated for killing 109 vietnamese civilians. in 2015, sy hersh appeared on democracy now! and discussed what the u.s. soldiers did on the day of the massacre. >> that morning they got up thinking they gng to be in combat against the vietcong. they were happy to do it. they wanted payback. they been taking it out on the people. they had been in country for three or four months without ever having setcear that is the way it is in
guerrilla warfare, which is why we should not do it, but that is another story. and they went in that morning ready to kill and be killed on behalf of america, to their they landed. there were just nothing but women and children doing the usual, as you said in your intro -- cooking, warming up rice for breakfast -- and they began to put them in ditches and start executing them. calley's company -- calley had a platoon. there were three platoons that went in. they rounded up people and put them in a ditch. the other companies just went along. they just killed and raped and mutilated. it went on until everybody was either run away or killed. 400 and some odd people in that or 600 alone of the 500 people that lived there were murdered there come all by noon, 1:00. at one point, one helicopter pilot, a wonderful man named thompson, saw what was going on and actually landed his helicopter. he was a small combat -- had two gunners. he just landed his small helicopter, and he ordered his gunners to train their weapons
on lieutenant calley and other americans. and calley was in the process of -- apparently going to throw hand grenades into a ditch where there were 10 or so vietnamese civilians. and he put his guns on calley and took the civilians, made a flt safy.ps and took them out, he, of course, was immediately in trouble for doing that. amy: that was seymour hersh on democracy now!. his reporting altered how many americans viewed the war in vietnam. he would win the pulitzer prize for his reporting. soldier was convicted for the mass killings, lieutenant william calley. he was initially sentenced to life in prison, but only served 3.5 years under house arrest. this is an edited excerpt of the vietnamese documentary "the sound of the violin in my lai." >> the onland thercan sualty othat dayas a bla soldier o couldot stand sh kiing. shot hielf in t fooso heould notave to te part in the msacre.
herberlater relatedi saw an old mastandingn theiddle of the reield wavinat us in a fendly manne that th shotim. saw poor farmers runng away from the burning hutsnd then they st them dd. mr lee is cky. e was onof the rare survors of thethis is the moria2 people, stly wom and ildren, o were kled alon this rd that d. nervous syem mushave been madef steel be ableo tak the pictur. a ba was killed comes still hanging its deamothe's brst. the sley thend heron were spar b thevery emselvesnder theodies of three four vilgers. arby, the chowas layi on p of his broer to shld him from theullets. bothf them re kille
thes twore also rvivors the ssacre, t theurvival wasomewhatpecial theyere saved by the licopter crew. wsurvivedecause tse amicans waiveto us antook on thei helicopter. thanks t the i am stl alive today. they shot like madmen. hecopter lded nears. men wad and came ou theyushed us oand tooks. weere deadcared. re they ing to dp us int the a? aftesome time they landed and signaled forto run away. was only then that we knew we had been saved. >> there's a lot anger.
irecteat the vietname people,t is rected ay fell ldho went crazthat day. i'm st real rry thaty crew could t have de more. and exemely soy for my fellowmericansor what happed. it w not rig. itas not war. i pretty got something like this never happens again. amy: an excerpt from the vietnamese film "the sound of the violin in my lai." -- film was directed by another veteran who returned to vietnam for this 50th anniversary of the my lai >> sorry is just not adequate for what happened in vietnam due to america's but whatever you call it here, invasion.
it is wrong. it is just wrong. it was deeply, deeply, deeply wrong. i don't think we have acknowledged it. amy: vietnam war veteran eric herderakg this 50th anniversary of the my lai massacre when u.s. forces slaughtered more than 500,000. the date march 16, 1968. the war would continue for another seven years. some scholars estimate as many as 3.8 million vietnamese died during the war. up to 800,000 perished in cambodia, another 1 million in laos. the u.s. death toll was 58,000. when we come back, we will speak to t vietnam war veterans and a peace activist who have traveled back to vietnam to mark the 50th anniversary of the my lai massacre. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
amy: "universal soldier" by buffy sainte-marie. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. today marks the 50th anniversary of the my lai massacre, when u.s. forces slaughtered more than 500 vietnamese women, children, and old men. a group of vietnam war veterans and peace activists have traveled back to vietnam to mark today's anniversary. juan gonzalez and i recently spoke to three members of the vietnamon that are in today. vietnam veteran paul cox, who later co-founded the veterans for peace chapter in san francisco, susan schnall, former navy nurse who was court-martialed for opposing the vietnam war, and longtime activist ron carver, who has organized an exhibit honoring the gi antiwar movement at the war remnants museum in ho chi minh city. i began bysking ron carver about what happened 50 years ago today in my lai. >> well, 504 civilians,
noncombatants, were mowed down by soldiers -- as you said, it was horrific, but it was not an isolated incident. it was part of the culture of the war that had been created and fostered and was largely a product of the pentagon's insistence on high body counts in order to justify their continued war effort andhe continuing escalating insistence that the u.s. congress give them ever more money and ever more troops. this is what led to these kind massacres. the significance to me, however, is people like hugh thompson who, at great risk, landed his helicopter, had his crew train
whor guns on the soldiers were committing this massacre and telling them that they had to stop or they would be shot themselves. ledthat is part of what has to the development of this exhibit that will be held in on the 19th of march, three days after the anniversary of the my lai massacre, called "waging peace." honor,o give credit in the folks who took great risks to oppose a war. so of them went to jail in this country, like dr. howard leavy, who refuse to train green beret troops in medical techniques.
there are people in this exhibit, honor those who refused to deploy to vietnam, like jj johnson and the two others who made the fouroot ree, people who went to vietnam like paul but thenonfrontinghe horror of what they were doing, stopped going out and engaging combat. some of them like bill schwartz ended up being charged with conspiracy to meet me because he refused to engage anymore in combat and was sent to the stockade in vietnam. others who deserted. a lot of these folks will be on the tour in march from hanoi to my lai and then to saigon. the exhibit will have photographs of them from
information that they said, and feature the underground papers that they produced telling other soldiers about what was going on, exposing the horrors and the injustice of that war. enlisted inox, you the military during the vietnam war. can you talk about your personal experience, why you decided to enlist, what the consciousness of the soldiers were? >> i joined in 68. had goty draft tice for two-ar draft enlistmt in the ar, b i woundp- i had consousness out thearou know, against it or for it, but i thought i had a duty to my country so i joined the marine s fofour years. not a deep thinker, but that is what i did. i spent 18 months in vietnam. most of that time i was up on areasz in a populated
fighting north vietnamese regulars. but with no contact with the vietnamese civilians. the last six months of my tour, i was down in the rice paddies and gotd west of danang a much, much different view of to war and saw how poorly, put it mildly, we were treating our so-called allies, the south vietnamese whose hearts and minds we were supposed to be winning. doingwt we were at all. we're operating in free fire zones. i was involved in a small massacre of about 15 people in may -- i'm sorry, april 1970. my entire view of the war. amy: can you talk about the massacre you said you were involved with? >> we were running what the pacificationed programs. essentially, we would go out from our base and sometimes only for a few hours, and we would sweep into a village and round
of everybody and put them on trucks or licopters and evacuate them to the strategic hamlets. we did that many times. this particular incident, we had been out for four days an old abandoned rice paddies that had been overgrown in elephant grass. we stomped down the elephant grass and created a company sized perimeter. we just sat there for four days running a cloverleaf of patrols in each of the four directions. in the same patrol each day on the same route, which is not smart, eventually on the fourth day, the squad that was in charge, that was doing the loo somebody sniped at them. nobody got hit but the squad unwise the decided to pursue the sniper. fod a booby-trap located it.th
somehow the thing went off, killed one man, wounded three others. that was it. that was done -- that was deal day, we were going to pull up stakes and we were going bridge, liberty bridge, and be taken back to the base. butict to liberty bridge, we had to go through a village. the rest of that afternoon afore we left, there was piper cub flying over this village with loudspeakers yellinathem in vieames presumably telling them they needed to evacuate because this was, after all, a free fire zone. commander -- this was in bravo covered, first battalion ftnes -- did an unusual thing. you told our lieutenant he wanted the squad that had lost mandate before to walk point --
men the day before to walk point. these men were very angry. they should have bn angry at themselves for finding the booby-trap and then being so silly as to set it off, but they were angry at the vietnamese. they walk point. when they got into the village, they passed the word back to my squad, are there any friendlies in this area? the company commander responded up the line, no, this is a free fire zone. immediately afterwards, there was some firing. o e first hut, there was an old woman who had got shot who was dying. the second hut we went to, there was a pile of six or eight people. e re cldreand women and anld man. in the third had, there's another pilot people who had been shot dead. passed throught the corner of the village.
everybody in the whole coveted walk past the same scene i did. will we got to the other side, the company commander as for other people to go back and search the rest of the village. none of the officers volunteered. there's a chain of command. you should've said, lieutenant, take a squad, or whatever. volunteers. for a staff surgeon and others the waa little more shooting. most of us were in shock. these people have been gunned down. this was not a battle. none of us participated in my squad in that. back. squad came we left. they called in airstrikes on the village -- which is not the way you're supposed to use tactical air. a few days later, apparently, some of ths massacread carriy d wan to a ny base and filed a formal complaint. there was anof --
investigation. nothing happened. neither the man who pulled the triggersthe lkwere relieved of duty. the company commander whose of e whole ing up w not lieved of duty. life juswent on. buthat turd my heaabout the war. to i was not going participate in that any longer. i left vietnam in august 1970 very, very angry a myself,t thmarine cor, athe ameopls. government. d reallyetermined was ing too what i cld to lp end the war still hatwo yes left to inhe marine corpsso i was a bit of latecom to the antiwa movemenand the i. moment, but i ied to me up for it by rking ry hard. i wastatione atamp lejee rhe past o years of my to. we put o an undergrnd nepaper lled "ge."
was ne an ample ofigh journalism, but it was the best we could do and we were really working hard to tell the truth about the vietnam war and about militarism. reaction ofas the the base commanders and authorities to your publication? as bestre underground we could be for a very long time. i don't even have a photograph of that period because we were afraid. i do have copies of the newspaper we put out. we used to distribute the newspaper the middle of the night. we would get 3000 copies made and bring them onto base in a couple of cars. we would go through the barracks -- camp lejeune is an infantry base. wldust walk through the barracks at 3:00 a.m. and drop off these papers on people's racks. after three or four or five of where we havey we with the mp'
ennd decided, ok, that is enough for tonight and we would leave. it freaked them out. was notsomething -- it something that were willing to tolerate. whenever they get caught on base. juan: i want to bring in susan schnall to the conversation. talk about your situation as a nurse and as a lieutenant in the navy. what happened with you? you are court-martialed? yes. i went into the navy to take care of the wounded, to help them heal and get back to their families and to their communities. i sawart of the navy, what was going on and i heard stories from the guys who came back. i was stationed in oakland, california, and took care of the casualties and heard their stories. i did not hear them in quite the same detail that pop has related because at that time, i think the war was to freshen they did
not want to talk explicitly about what they had seen. but i heard their nightmares and the middle of the night. i heard them yelling and screaming and yelling out to their buddies. i saw some of the guys who had open wounds having their arms and legs held up by butcher-like contraptions with infection coming out. as i said, i heard them in the middle of the night. i heard some of the stories that way. i went in as a healer and i felt at one point, it was after about a year in the military, that i had become a part of the united states military and i had helped perpetuate the war in vietnam. i just thought i had to live with myself and speak out against the war. i had heard about the united states dropping flyers on vietnam, on the vietnamese urging them to go to protective hamlets to get away from the spring, which we now know is
agent orange, and to get out of harm's way. organizing awere march for peace in the san francisco bay area. we had difficugein puicity out. we posted flyers. we put posters up and they were torn dn on thease. i thoug, if the uted stat can drothese flrsn thpeople oanother coury, y could't werop flyeron mili bases publicizing the g.i. and veterans march for peace in the san francisco bay area? i had a friend who was a pilot. we rented a single engine plane and loaded it with fers nouncinghe demonsttion. we drop em othe nava hospit where i was workingn --are iand, on e video presidio, and then we flew into the alameda naval air station because the uss ranger was docked there and we drop the
flyers on the deck of the aircraft carrier. i wore my uniform and i had a press conference afterwards. y: you are a navy lieutenant. >> i was lieutenant junior grade, yes. amy: were you afraid? >> it was -- yes. i was concerned about what the miryou me. but i looked at that in proportion to what was going on with what we were doing with young american soldiers and how we were sending them in harms way. to hurt and to kill and destroy people from another country thousands of miles away, and i thought about the terrible destruction and damage being done to vietnam. for me, it it was an issue, as i said, of living with myself and just saying i am in the milita. i stand ainst thwar. ere are ny, manyhousands of oth soldis, manes, who will stand with me.
so we dropped the flyers and had the press conference. i was issued this order to not wear my uniform in a public demonstration, expressing my partisan views publicly. i thought, general moreland goes in front of congress asking for more men and more armaments and more money to fight this war, why can't i wear my uniform as a member of the military andndupo? uniform and antiwar demonstration and spoke out against the war. juan: you are court-martialed. and what happened? >> thatixonthlater. i actually worked full-time in the military, had an article 15, the captain's mast, went on to a full general court-martial, was tried for two charges. one was de morale of troops and the other was disobeying a general navy regulation and conduct unbecoming an officer.
i was given a sentence, six months forfeiture of all pay and allowances. confined. the trial counsel one of five years confinement and hard labor and the court-martial board gave me six months confinement. and dismissal from service. amy: where yd to and what did you have to do? >> i was sent back to full duty because at that time am a the military also had a regulation that said if a woman received a sentence of under a year, she did not necessarily have t e it. and since i received a sentence of six months, which i think was deliberate -- we had a lot of publicity about the case -- i was sent back to the hospital to full duty and reported and was then assigned to the women's unit and the children's units, and we put out an underground newspaper, but handed out from person to person on the base. amy: susan schnall, former navy nurse who was court-martialed
amy: ratrjoe d thei'm-fixin'-to-die fish. this is democracy now!, democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we continue to mark the 50th anniversary of the my lai massacre and we return to the conversation juan gonzalez and i had with three longtime peace activists who went back to vietnam to mark the anniversary, vietnam war veterans paul cox and susan schnall and longtime organizer ron carver. i asked ron to talk about the gi coffeehouses which became a hotbed of gi resistance during the vietnam war. supportiveo were of the soldiers in the effort to
bring them home alive came up with the idea, started with fred gardner, who was in alameda, california, who opened up the first coffeehouse called the ufo .nd clinic a place ins to have these army towns that were filled with exploitive businesses trying to just police the soldiers, sleazy jewelry stores, or houses. up ad the idea of setting nonprofit coffeehouses where gis could ce, listen to rock 'n roll, watch movies about vietnam come and talk with each other. particular, soldiers back from vietnam who were feeling bitter
and betrayed that the war was not what they have been told it wereoing to be and resentful. they could come and talk to the recruits who were not yet -- had not yet been sent to vietnam. it also they could write their stories and create these underground newspapers that we civilians within take to have printed, bring back to the coffeehouses. thousands of copies of these, soiers within smuggle back onto the base at great risk to themselves, therefore, spread the word. in many ways, those underground papers were the equivalent of the social media today. they were a method where the soldiers who knew the truth about the war in vietnam could pass tt along in pretty close to real time. they would also talk about the
burgeoning protests by soldiers at other bases, leading peace involved inerting, acts of sabotage, and other end the war. juan: i want to turn to a clip from the 2005 documentary "sir, no server." >> phenomenon has crept up his army bases. so-called underground g.i. press, which possess l le antiwar nepapers. military authorities are clamping down hard on the papers. >> published by group of radicals station of his army base. >> wheeze to distributed clandestinely on the base. we would be bunches of them and
barracks and leave them in footlockers. if you are caught distributing literature on base, that was a court-martial offense will stop >> despite the military's best effort, the underground press became the lifeblood of the g.i. movement. as the armies on recruiting slogan fun travel and adventure turned into the popular g.i. army.sion -- [bleep the >> papers written and published throughout the world. wherever there were american gis in the world. juan: that was a clip from the 2005 documentary "sir, no sir." a lot of attention has been devoted in studies and reminiscences of the antiwar movement in vietnam, but not as much to the resistance within the themselves and to what degree that affected the decision of the u.s. government and he could
no longer continue to pursue the war in vietnam. i'm wondering your thoughts the impact of that g.i. resistance? >> you can have my thoughts, but the army's own internal studies noted the breakdown in morale, the bakdown of discipline, the large number of frontline soldiers who were refusing to fight or would go out but found ways not to engage with the so-called enemy. antiwar every major march, peace march in the united states, was led by active-duty soldiers and veterans. and by 1971-1972, it became clear that the united states no longer had the capacity to continue the ground war.
and that led to the pentagon says it and to move toward an air war that was not dependent on ground troops. and then soon after that, you then to see sailors on destroyers, i'm sorry, the aircraft carriers refusing to board are beginning to sabotage their own ships. you saw air force navy highlights -- pilots refusing to continue going on bombing missions. not enough to bring the war to a halt just yet. they continued until 1975. movemently, the g.i. of active-duty soldiers, backed up by veterans and in the ne movement, was a key factor. along, of course, with the incredible spirit
and determination to fight for the liberation of their country. but i believe, and a lot of the story and snow are beginning to believe, that this movement was a key factor i m people don't even know that there was a g.i. antiwar movement. film justey can burns glossed over this as they thought an insignificant part. but it was a major reason that the u.s. had to pull out. amy: paul cox, talk about how the g.i. resistance materialized for you in vietnam while you are fighting. what were you seeing around you? how reorganizing? ofi did not do a lot organizing. basically, we were trying to stay alive. we used to stand back controls. that wasn't term we use for what
we were sent out a patrol, might have 10 checkpoints. we would go out to checkpoint one and sit there all day and they go to checkpoint 10, which was on the way backand they come back in at the end of the day, not having actually gone down the trails that we were supposed to control. managed to get sick now and then and not go out into the field. they were fraggings. not a lot, but some that i knew about. in the last unit i was in, when we came in from the field, they took all of our grenades away froms. amy: explain why they would take the grenades away in the whole issue of what fragging is. >> a study was to buy the army and they admitted to 1600 fraggings, attempts are actual murders of officers or senior enlisted men by the lower ranking troops. becauselled a fragging
a common tool of a murder of officer would be to throw a grenade under his rack. fragmentation grenades. whether they would shoot the men during a battle or shoot him in the middle of the night or frag him, that was all the same thing. the army admitted to 1600 of those. of them in my two last period of time there. they got paranoid. they did not trust the troops and a longer, so they took our grenades away from us. it is reminiscent of what we hear in afghanistan, suppose, tutrheir allies. i want to turn to a clip of john kerry speaking in 1971. at the time, he was a member of vietnam veterans against the war . he was testifying before the senate in 1971 when he discussed the atrocities honor in the
winter soldier investigation were over 150 veterans testified to war crimes committed in southeast asia. stories ofthe times they had personally raped, offoff ears, cut heads, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at d villages,raze shot catando fun, poisoned stocks and generally ravaged the countryside of south vietnam, in addition to the normal ravage of war and the normal a very particular ravaging which is that by the applied bombing power of this country. juan: that was john kerry speaking in 1971 to the united states senate.
paul cox, i'm just wondering, he was a member of the same g.i. resistance movement against the war that you were a part of. >> john kerry? juan: yes. >> at that point he was a veteran. he was out of the military. so i don't know he took actions while he was in the military, but the veteran's movement was very important. certainly after i got out some a i was active in the veterans movement in support of the g.i. movement for a number of years after i got out. working on additional paper called up against the bulkhead they came out of the san francisco bay area. i told you the story of my one horrific day. the kerry was relating wier soldier to congress of numerous g.i.'s talking about what have happened to them at their time.
when you put them all together, whe our allies and he alsoof made a very important point which was the airpower. not considered or crime such as cutting off an ear might be, but certainly did tremendous damage to the vietnamese people in the countryside and the environment, along with agent orange -- which continues, as a legacy in vietnam today. in the unexploited ordnance, which is a tremendous problem in vietnam. as ron pointed out, can burns just glossed over it and said, the land and vietnam is largely healed itself. well, it has not healed itself. they will never get rid of the unexploded ordnance.
these things continue -- is the gift that keeps on giving. >> we talk about everything happening 50 years ago as though it is the end. what paul has just mentioned is the issue, continui issue of agent orange the continues to contaminate the land and the people in vietnam. we have both been on a couple of trips to visit the people and to see the children who were born with these trible birth defects who will never be able to lead any kind of normal lives. and the issue of that war 50 years ago is that that legacy continues and that death and deruins toy. paul mentioned the continuing problem of unexploded ordnance. chilen and farmers who are yi till the land, if they come upon a scrap of metal, that can explode, kill them, maim them for life. that were 50 years ago continues to harm.
i will mention also that we know that the children of american servicemen who were in vietnam have also been born with very thoser broke the facts to of the children of vietnam. the worst part for the vietnamese is because the land is contaminated with dioxin, babies continue to beorand to be affected by this problem. we want to commemorate and to respect the terrible, terrible massacre and the sacrifice that the vietnamese sufd e years as service people, as veterans to say we are sorry, we take responsibility, and we will continue to work for peace and will continue to work with you to try to heal some of these wounds of war. cox, how would the veterans that you have known after you came out of the military, how have many of the
veterans of vietnam dealt with these issues of their in what most of the rest of the rld continues an unjust, imperial war, but still regarded as a tragic mistake by many leaders in this country? a range ofthere's responses. my own respoe such a thing was to turn against the war, and i have been an activist ever since. other people probably haven't talked about it at all. some people have drank themselves to death, shut themselves, jumped off of bridges. other people he just shut it down. and then the few probably are still proud of what they did in vietnam. the vast, vast majority of gis that went to vtnam either witnessed or participated in anything such as this. theough, you have to say pilots that weren those b-52's
and they got a push the tton at ope t bombay ors and drop t bom did farore mage thaany indivual who looked h victimsn the eye while shot them. is hear itsel dictmentf ourountry. sh.ould be seen as anthe air r and the artillery in the naval fire should all be seen as equally hers and as criminal -- rent is and is criminal and inhumane as those men that pulled the trigger in my lai, the ones in my unit that pulled the trigger on those civilians. amy: that was vietnam war veteran paul cox, susan schnall, former navy nurse who was court-martialed for dropping in to work hamlet's from a plane over u.s. military bases around san francisco bay, and longtime activist ron carver.
all three are in vietnam today to mark the 50th anniversary of the my lai massacre. that that's it for today's special. if you would like a copy, go to our website at democracynow.org. democracy now! is looking for feedback from people who appreciate the closed captioning. e-mail your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to democracy now! p.o. box 693 new york, new york 10013. will be inow! washington, d.c., march 24 for live multihour broadcast f the march for our lives that by student survivors of the valentine's day massacre at the marjory stoneman douglas high school in parkland, florida. tune in then. [captioning made possible by democracy now!] happy birthday ariel boone!
ruben martinez: los angeles, from the early 20th century all the way until today, is a city defined by immigrants arriving here in wave after wave. we're a city of immigrants. it's all coming in a human migration, a human journey, ultimately. that's how food gets around the world. we carry wit in our stomachs and our bodies and in our culture. those kinds of journeys, those kinds of migrations, are very los angelino. so, stuff starts to shift culturally in a kinds of different ways. people start learning the language... but it's not just the immigrants that are changed. the immigrants are changing the natives. and you can literally track a people's history and the history of a city and the