Vietnam veterans were often unwelcome at Veterans Day parades. In short, your friend's claim that veterans' mistreatment is a "myth" is misleading at best. This list is way out of date. Particularly on college campuses. There is not a single corroborating news report from that time of any solider being spat upon. Were Vietnam War Veterans actually spit at/ mistreated after they returned from the War? I am so glad people's attitudes toward the military has changed. Mistreatment of vets, more often than not, seemed to be a lack of respect or recognition. Vietnam Veterans in Congress . Once Australia had withdrawn from the war in 1973, even the conservative side of politics distanced themselves from the war, leaving the military, especially the conscripts, feeling badly used. The first reported instance of spitting occurs during an International Day of Protest featuring "Veterans for Peace in Vietnam." I am personally confused about this issue given the varying levels of experiences and evidence from both sides. Many campuses around the country started to ban any show of military on campus, like public displays of ROTC. I had my windows up. Would you start a physical confrontation with a trained killer who you believe is also a war criminal? I used to read the the website Daily Kos, and some years ago, a group of progressive Vietnam veterans took this meme on by daring anybody to document an example of returning vets being spit on (the vets had an advantage of being familiar with the military units of the time, thus they could challenge people as to which unit they served in, etc), At least in his case, nobody was able to convincingly come up with proof (most responses were like, "Well my dad told me he saw it and he wasn't a liar"). "NEW YORK PAYS HOMAGE TO VIETNAM VETERANS." Answers must be in-depth and comprehensive, or they will be removed. The "spitting" part is a sadly common story, specifically the fact that anti-war protesters/hippies were waiting at airports to spit on veterans returning from combat. Web. If you would like to volunteer to help us update and maintain this section, please send email to Bill McBride . Here it is the WAR SUPPORTERS who are spitting on the pro-peace veterans. The only contemporary accounts we have of spitting was during the Republican convention in 1972. It all depends on where you are and the time period. The debate in society was about the war, and veterans were as much a part of that debate as everyone else, if not more so. They took a bus from the base for protection as the Dept. Feel free to submit interesting articles, tell us about this cool book you just read, or start a discussion about who everyone's favorite figure of minor French nobility is! For further discussion on how sourcing works in this subreddit, please consult this thread. A friend of mine says that it is just a myth but I'm skeptical. And, as for Mr. Olbermann, the point is not whether the social science research collected in Jerry Lembcke's book "The Spitting Image: Myth, Memory, and the Legacy of Vietnam" is correct and that no evidence exists of returning veterans being spit upon, but how most of these men were treated after the war. That is how most of us saw this. For years I had been hearing stories that when American troops returned home from Vietnam, they were spat upon by anti-war protesters. Many Vietnam vets took part in the protests. College students spit and throw beer bottles at veterans April 23, 2015 April 23, 2015 Twice a year Panama City Beach welcomes our wounded heroes into the community for the Warrior Beach Retreat, but an event aimed at honoring our nation’s veterans took a different turn at their hotel. The outcome was that their morale was destroyed and they felt isolated. I'm sorry, but this is not an acceptable basis for an answer in this subreddit, so I have had to remove the two YouTube videos you've linked here. That study shows only a handful (32) of instances were presented as in any way antagonistic … I protested the war, and knew some vets, and I saw them as victims getting squeezed in a vise of public opinion. Some, like Wowwk, say they had invectives hurled their way; others, like naval officer … Yet there is also a lot of comprehensive evidence that these stories are urban myths, and that soldiers … And remember that the whole population can't be characterized by the actions of a few. Vietnam vets were raised in a society that honored veterans. Whether or not this was the case, they all believed it. And a few years after the war ended I joined the military, and got caught in a protest group, and had people mob my car and I had a shake thrown on my wind shield. I don't know if anyone spat on them, but it was true that when in uniform they were engaged in conversation by opponents of the war, which, by 1971, was the great majority of the population. That's why it was considered such an outrage... a drafted soldier shouldn't be the scapegoat for the politics of his/her nation. "VIETNAM IS A FOCUS FOR VETERANS DAY." He also said it wasnt like that every day it only seemed to happen when a Nuclear powered ship was pulling into port. Most soldiers drafted after 1968 were antiwar even before they went … Some Vietnam vets are heroes, no doubt, but simply serving because you were forced to and suffering trauma or death as a result doesn’t make you a hero – it makes you a victim. But now we are not forgotten, we have our memorial, we've had our parades." The stories were usually very specific. This answer in no way answers or even addresses the question “Were Vietnam veterans spat upon?” Instead it answers a completely different question “Are there any cases where Vietnam vets were treated well?” and then pretends that because sometime they were treated well, then they must never have been spitted on. Those who opposed the war, and there were thousands, were welcomed with open arms by the antiwar movement, becoming a leading force in the country as Vietnam Veterans … ", In the 1986 Veterans Day ceremony at the Vietnam Memorial, one speaker argued against a perception that "the cause for which we fought was not worthy of your lives." Yet there is also a lot of comprehensive evidence that these stories are urban myths, and that soldiers were not spat upon, and that these stories were created and circulated by the Right Wing. Numerous first-hand accounts echo the idea that vets were "forgotten. Things have really changed in this country and the vast majority are very pro-military now, so this all may seem very odd to you now. Make sure to familiarize yourself with our rules and guidelines before participating. The forward port was in the Philippines The Home port was Okinawa and Service port was San Diego. Press J to jump to the feed. He has pictures of the protests and a medical note about having to get stitches from getting hit with a rock by protesters. I am sure some of the protests were about the war it self but i can only speak to what I have seen from his Navy box and the protests near the Naval bases. Despite Sirota's contentions, Vietnam vets were a bit crushed coming home. New York Times n.d.: n. pag. If you have any first-person accounts (it happened to me or I saw it happen) of returning Vietnam vets being spit on, please click below where it says, "Click to submit your own comments," and tell us about … While outright harassment of Vietnam veterans almost certainly did happen, mistreatment of Vietnam veterans was usually a lack of recognition-- a perceived amnesia about the sacrifices made by veterans. The Vietnam War claimed the lives of more than 58,000 American service members and wounded more than 150,000. In 1965, World War II veterans who were taking part in an antiwar demonstration were reviled as … Thanks! Jerry Davich who writes for the Post-Tribune a Chicago Sun Times Publication adds support to my theory that Vietnam Vets were not spit on when they returned. Convention members spat on antiwar Vietnam vets protesting, most famously told in Born on the Fourth of July. and the protests were bigger in Japan. Panama City Beach spring breakers spit on Vietnam veterans. As I am saying all this way after the fact and have no links to said conversation, feel free to take this with a grain of salt. Veterans were not a monolithic group. Do you have relatives who are veterans? During the Vietnam War, Australian army and navy men were told to not wear their uniforms when on leave back home. In 1998 sociologist and Vietnam veteran Jerry Lembcke published "The Spitting Image: Myth, Media and the Legacy of Viet Nam." The Vietnam Memorial. Another speaker noted, "For a long time we were forgotten. ------------------------------------------------------------ Last week, both the New York Times and U.S. News & World Report reprised the horrific accounts of Vietnam War protesters spitting on returning servicemen. Yes, some people in the hippie/peace movement would try to find soldiers dressed in uniform and yell at them, throw things, and insult them. 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