Working-Class War: American Combat Soldiers and Vietnam by Christian G. AppyNo one can understand the complete tragedy of the American experience in Vietnam without reading this book. Nothing so underscores the ambivalence and confusion of the American commitment as does the composition of our fighting forces. The rich and the powerful may have supported the war initially, but they contributed little of themselves. That responsibility fell to the poor and the working class of America.--Senator George McGovern
Reminds us of the disturbing truth that some 80 percent of the 2.5 million enlisted men who served in Vietnam--out of 27 million men who reached draft age during the war--came from working-class and impoverished backgrounds. . . . Deals especially well with the apparent paradox that the working-class soldiers families back home mainly opposed the antiwar movement, and for that matter so with few exceptions did the soldiers themselves.--New York Times Book Review
[Appys] treatment of the subject makes it clear to his readers--almost as clear as it became for the soldiers in Vietnam--that class remains the tragic dividing wall between Americans.--Boston Globe
Working-class war : American combat soldiers and Vietnam
This war would serve as an introduction to what war was to the home front. It was in the homes of America where so many had been previously sheltered from the realities of war. During previous conflicts, there had been a military censorship on all media that pertained to war. This would not be the case in Vietnam, it would be completely uncensored. The ability for reporters to provide a commentary on the war without censorship. The book examines the class difference between the soldiers who were dragged into or participated in the Vietnam War.
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We face the wall, beholding the names of the dead. We see ourselves on the smooth surface, our clothes rippled by the breeze, shading a space of chiseled names. This is a memorial, however, not a monument. Silence, sadness, a kind of timid wonder may fall upon us, but not because they are exacted by monumental size or grandeur or pretense. With time, in fact, we are enlarged, not diminished, in the presence of the wall. It draws us closer. Our reflections deepen.
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Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date. For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now. - The following article was first published in Proletarian Revolution No.
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