The Official Voice of Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc. ®
An organization chartered by the U.S. Congress

October/November 2003 POLICY FOR LETTERS


We welcome letters to the editor for publication in The VVA Veteran. We are interested in your criticism as well as your praise. Letters may be edited for purposes of clarity or space. Regrettably, because of the volume of mail we receive, we are unable to acknowledge or return unpublished material.

I wish to congratulate the recently elected officers. I almost said "winners,'' but then I think everyone running for office is a winner, even if he lost. I really appreciate those who can still move and communicate and help legislate what is needed for us disabled and incapacitated veterans who cannot move much beyond the four walls of a house for adults, a nursing home, or a hospital.

We are entering the holiday season again. If you haven't done it before, why not join in a visitation of some of your sick or incapacitated veteran buddies or acquaintances? Thank you for keeping the flame alive.

John L. Simson
Via e-mail


If all Vietnam veterans read the speech Paul Bucha made at the VVA National Convention [printed in the August/September issue], I think they would get out and vote and get us a president who would not go to war anywhere except to defend this great land we have right here.

No more wars. Support VA funding.

Larry L. May
Via e-mail


I've just finished reading for the second time Paul Bucha's outstanding speech to this year's VVA Convention. Reading between the lines, there's so much more in his message.

First is the fact that politicians keep track of everything. They know how many people are expected at any given event. They "tune'' their appearances to these figures. Hence, the 611 delegates in St. Louis would be considered small potatoes by most of them.

Secondly, governments - both state and national - keep track of our deaths and the projected rate thereof. They know our membership numbers in each state. Veterans as a whole do not present a united front. Therefore, we do not form a significant block of votes. We are getting lost in the dust when it comes to being recognized as politically important to any state or national candidate's chances of victory in any election.

While we can't wear the uniform anymore or shoulder arms, we need to go to battle one more time to take back what we're losing on an almost daily basis. All of us who've worn any uniform, no matter our age, have a stake in what happens to us. And we need to get it together now!

I'd like to suggest that all veterans groups print in their next magazine a full page in red, white, and blue that says: VETS VOTE! It should be taken out of the magazine and placed in the windows of cars and kept there until November. Make them uniform, make them prominent, and make them available to every veteran. We need to let the country know we're still a force that has a say in what happens. And we'd better do it soon.

Russ Ehlert
Tallahassee, Florida


A fellow 5th Special Forces Group veteran of Vietnam sent me the August/September issue because we were in the battle area during the period of the siege of Ben Het. I knew most of the individuals named in the article and found the writer to be quite accurate.

I served as the II Corps Mike Force Task Force Lien commander at Dak To for about six weeks until I was assigned to the 5th Battalion, whereupon I served in the field with that team, at Ben Het and elsewhere, until I returned home in January 1970.

Please let John Prados know that I found his article interesting and for the most part accurate. I regularly get together with other Mike Force vets and have passed the article on to them.

Christopher E. McClure
Via e-mail


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