‘USA Pretend’ Unmasked
By S. Brian Willson, Global Research, September 12, 2019
With the perception and honesty of another Howard Zinn, In this piece, Willson addresses US’ actions on an international scale as a result of personal experiences.” ~ Don Chapin
Viet Nam – Epiphany for the USA
There was a moment in Viet Nam when I questioned whether everything I had been taught about “America” was one big fabricated lie – a huge pretend. It was April 1969, and I had just experienced witnessing the aftermath of a series of bombings of supposed military targets. They were in fact inhabited, undefended villages where virtually everyone in those villages perished from low flying bombings, that included napalming. The majority of dead – murdered – were young burned children. On several occasions I observed those bodies up close, sickened by the sight, now burdened by the criminal nature of the US war. The policy of accumulating massive numbers of body counts was an inkling of the Grand Lie. Reading the entrance sign to my squadron in-country headquarters, “Welcome to Indian Country,” was a first clue.
My duty station was the “home” of the fighter-bombers and pilots who followed orders to destroy those “enemy targets”, i.e., villages. I
was the USAF night security commander following orders to protect those soldiers and planes from mortar and sapper attacks.
A few days later I was reading an article in Stars and Stripes, an official, independent newspaper for soldiers, reporting on a recent Supreme Court decision (Street v. New York, 1969) that upheld the right of desecrating our “sacred” symbol – the US flag. During a period of increased burnings of the US American flag in protests of the US wars against African-Americans at home, and Asians abroad, an African-American veteran recipient of a Bronze Star, Sidney Street, publicly burned his personal flag on a New York City street corner for which he was arrested and convicted.
Depressed, I pondered how it is that one could be arrested for burning a piece of cloth – even a national symbol – that represented an official policy of criminally burning innocent human beings, including large numbers of young children, while the pilot- perpetrators were commended, and whom, in my duties I was protecting? Initially suicidal, I had difficulty wrapping my head around this dystopian nightmare. I was in psychic shock from extreme cognitive dissonance.
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