Pilger’s piece is far superior in its depth and analysis than this one, sorry to say. See also Chuck O’Connell’s piece in Counterpunch in which he points out several things that are “details” or “mistakes” like the whole U.S. invasion and utter destruction of Indo-China were “mistakes” by “men with good intentions” that Burns would have us believe. O’Connell points out that both the NLF , always referred to with the slur “Viet Cong”, were fighting against a U.S. backed regime that represented peasant farmers against a rapacious landowner class that had served them up to the French and were ruthlessly exploiting them during this period.
So the Hanoi gov’t and the NLF were very much about “land reform”, which is the sine qua non of all revolutionary movements in agricultural societies. Burns in breathtakingly subtle in his propaganda (that is Exactly what it is) in the 2nd episode, describes an interviewee as someone whose mother was killed in the “vicious Viet Cong land reform”, offering not a wit of evidence or further explanation. We’ll let’s say she was, but what did “land reform” mean to millions and millions of Vietnamese peasants? He never ever mentions land reform in his description of the NLFor the N. Vietnam government! How do you leave out the core political objective of a gov’t which the CIA said in 1954 would have won 80% of the vote, and which also explains why the entire American invasion was doomed: the vast majority of Vietnamese were completely opposed to who the S. Vietnamese were. Not ever referring to this leaves Americans just as ignorant about this war as when they sat down to watch the doc.
Do you think Bank of America was uncomfortable with the U.S. atrocities? Sure. Do you think they were Thrilled that the fundamental questions were never laid bare, so that people have no better understanding of Iraq, Afghanistan, et al and will not be indignant at the slaughter, because they see the Viet Cong as just “the other guys”, with no insight into why the U.S. was fighting Communism in Asia.
The euphemistic bromides that Burns indulges in are rampant, and the simple fact of “class”, so profoundly important to this conflict, is absent. Again, as I’ve said in an earlier post, the tragic murder of 2-3 million souls and the betrayal of American men and women will remain a crime of greater proportion than this country realizes, but Burns has been paid well to obscure cause and effect.