The Viet Nam War Stole Their Fathers
(C) James J Alonzo
I hate it when someone parrots General SHerman’s quote; ”War is Hell!”, because that’s a lie. Hell is only for the guilty. War is worse than Hell, war not only destroys a country, kills soldiers on both sides, but it also kills and destroys innocent people. Sometime whole generations.
Viet Nam is where It began, the young men answering the call of their country, basic training, then advance training, and then after training, they received their orders.
Orders that send these young men and women to this exotic country in Southeast Asia. These orders telling them that they got sent to this exotic country, to meet interesting people, and even kill some of them.
Viet Nam was war, gore, heat, death, chaos, and destruction. A war that stole from children of the Viet Nam warriors, their father’s heart. A war that killed his buddies, his spirit, and hardened the man from within!
Vietnam was a place that many soldiers left parts of themselves, body parts, parts of their psychological being, their morality, their soul, all the while hurting with fear, and pain.
Viet Nam was a place that over 58,000 of their buddies died. Viet Nam was a war that hundreds of thousands were wounded and maimed. While others their age were safe at home in America, protesting the wall calling these soldiers “baby killers.”
Viet Nam was a war where terror through the night struck hard, as beads of sweat rolled down their faces, as insects bit. Viet Nam was a war that they did not choose, but they were there, not for country, mom’s apple pie, but to stay alive, and protect their fellow soldiers lives.
Viet Nam was the war that they had to listen to the fire of ammunition echoing through the sky, and watching their buddies falling at their sides, their blood beneath spreading across the mud and dirt. Soldiers dead, or wounded, crying out “who is caring about me?”
Viet Nam was where they had to stay alive by crawling through the mud, having to improvise, learning to roll with the shock and changes as they came.
Young and naive, struggling to survive with each passing day, never knowing that some of the planes above were spraying chemicals that would kill them years later, and cause health problems for their children, and grand children.
Viet Nam, where soldiers had to drudge through the mud up to their knees, crossing warm rivers with leeches, snakes, and contaminated water by dioxin from Agent Orange runoffs.
Earth giving soldiers shelter from harm, as they grasp it and hold on to it tight, feeling it beneath their feet pulling them into the darkness of the jungles.
Guns readily at their sides, never allowed to go to sleep. And when they try to sleep, while their buddies watch, nightmares flash through their mind. Flares flicker overhead, fired into the sky to aid in searching for the enemy hiding in the black jungle.
At the end of their tour, the United Sates of America sending them home one by one, scarred by the war, not knowing their minds damaged with PTSD, bodies contaminated with Agent Orange.
Back home, no one really understanding the pain and suffering going on with the combat soldiers. No one understood the protests, and the anger directed at the combat veteran.
Thousands of tears fall to the ground for the Vietnamese victims of The war, but not for the soldiers coming home one by one. Where was the welcoming home, the support they needed to go on with their lives?
Some parents, wives and children grieving the loss of their sons, dead fathers and husbands. Others, their soldiers are standing in front of them, but the soldier that came home is spiritually and emotionally gone forever.
The Black Wall in Washington, Beer, Whiskey, and Cigarettes speaking from the graves of the brothers who died in front of them. To forget, suicide, or drugs and alcohol are used, a disease that swept across the nation of American combat soldiers. Children and wives left behind, guilt, pain and suffering over taking their lives.
Misunderstood, and running away from the memories that still lived inside, screaming murder, blood everywhere. Nightmares, flashbacks, memories in the soldiers head, wrestling day in, day out, all through the night. Combat veterans, no joy or life left in them.
The soldiers that survived Viet Nam, coming home, their children born, filled with defects and illnesses, parents crying through the night. Questions of why unanswered, walls built up, broken communication, lack of love, relations dissolve. Prayers for the child of the soldier to survive.
The Viet Nam War stole their fathers, damaged family’s lives, as the aftermath of Agent Orange spread through their veins one by one. No mercy, no compassion, where is the justice for the American soldier and his family