Few Americans want to read real stories about foreign civilians caught up in America’s wars.
Almost no one wants to read an encyclopedia of atrocities or a tome-like chronology of suffering.
He began to rape him and was heard to exclaim that it was “really good, it was tight.” After the private was finished, the private first class raped Curtis. “I know you enjoy it,” Curtis heard one of them say before he blacked out from the pain.
If he didn’t imbibe with them — “them” being a fellow specialist, a private first class, and a private — they swore they would anally rape him. In a flash, the three tore off his bed sheets and flipped him onto his stomach.They leaned on him to hold him down as he thrashed and bucked, while they ripped off his underwear.On August 31, 1969, a rape was committed in Vietnam. These are often the same guys who won’t tell you the truths that they know about war and who never think to blame themselves in any way for our collective ignorance.Maybe numerous rapes were committed there that day, but this was a rare one involving American GIs that actually made its way into the military justice system. The truth is, you actually can know a lot about war without fighting in one.After Curtis regained consciousness, he retreated to the showers.
When he finally returned to the hootch, the fellow specialist who raped him issued a threat.I can tell you from experience that if you read a few dozen of the best of them, you can get a fairly good idea about what that war was really like.Maybe not perfect knowledge, but a reasonable picture anyway. But it killed several million Vietnamese and severely affected — and I mean severely — the lives of many millions more. Missing in Action (From Our Histories) From American histories, you would think the primary feature of the Vietnam War was combat. Suffering was the main characteristic of the war in Southeast Asia.When he began to retch, they let him go and he ran outside to throw up.He returned to his bunk and they attacked him again. The last attempt to force Curtis to drink began with a threat.Or you can read several hundred of the middling-to-poor books and, if you pay special attention to the few real truths buried in all the run-of-the-mill war stories, you’ll still get some feeling for war American-style. Millions of Vietnamese suffered: injuries and deaths, loss, privation, hunger, dislocation, house burnings, detention, imprisonment, and torture.