Vietnam Revisited

When you look back at the history
of the war in Vietnam
some things now hard to fathom
like defoliants and napalm;

agent orange sounds cool, refreshing,
but turning green to ghastly brown
and now it’s killing Veterans,
and damaging the genes we’re passing down.

The strategy hard to fathom,
use our troops to draw ‘em out,
then let rockets, planes, and mortars
increase the body count.

The presidents never got it,
yet continued to invest,
sent money, arms, resources
along with the Nation’s best.

Thanks to them trust’s now forgotten,
we stopped believing long ago,
if the top dogs always lying
who do you emulate, extol?

The so-called overriding purpose,
communism must be contained;
but what the Vietnamese most wanted
was their way of life remain.

The insanity more than toxic,
most preferred we go away;
their government corrupt and clueless,
the Buddhist majority had no say.

You take a hill on Thursday
give it back the Friday next;
while focusing on body count
even now makes little sense.

But it’s hard to fight a war
when folks back home are fighting you;
and it’s hard to keep your focus
when your leadership is askew.

America’s fought 2 Civil Wars,
the second over Vietnam;
the big 3 stopped reporting,
started planting seeds of doubt;

though Tet, Khe Sanh and others
showed the enemy on the run;
the war live nights at 6,
left viewers shocked and numb.

The way the war was ended,
a slap in every Veteran’s face,
we simply claimed we were the victors,
deserted our allies, left the place.

No real strategy for victory,
we betrayed our allies too,
we were negotiating with the enemy,
Nixon hid it from President Thieu.

Gold Star Mother’s no longer honored,
VA Hospitals beyond disgrace;
many Vets addicted, homeless, dying,
waiting for their nation to show some grace.

No parades for those returning
not a thank you, glad you’re back,
the war no longer mattered,
they simply didn’t give a crap.

In our representative form of government
we can’t just blame those we elect
though they share much culpability
still it’s us they represent.

We should be forever grateful
to the Heroes honored on The Wall
and those awarded for their valor,
every Veteran can stand tall.

Vietnam wasn’t their idea
they only did what they were asked,
you don’t turn against the people
who’re fighting on your behalf.

We lost more than Da Nang and Saigon,
we lost our soul and our esteem,
‘cause when you desecrate your heroes,
you forsake your Nation’s Dream.

It’s the lowest kind of betrayal
to commit troops to a war
you never meant to win;

it’s the worse form of treason
to celebrate with the enemy
during the war you’re fighting in.

There were no arrests or prosecution,
Hanoi Jane’s making movies once again,
but to us she’s still a traitor
who should’ve been tried, convicted, hung.

But for us who did survive it,
there are reasons to fight on,
we can’t forget our fallen Heroes
cause it’s them who’ve made us strong!

Mason Swinney

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About menmourningmoments

I'm happily married, the Father of 2 sons and 2 daughters and 4 beautiful grandchildren. Death is all around us but somehow we've managed to distance ourselves from it. Men, Mourning, Moments is about how the death of my son awakened me to life & the desire to seize every moment as though it were my last. It's about making sense of life in the good times and bad and allowing GOD to carry me and teach me through the hard times in life.
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