“Sir! No Sir!” (Displaced Films)


General, man is very useful.
He can fly and he can kill.
But he has one defect: He can think.

~ by Bertolt Brecht


I have already given hints as to my age. Here are more. I recall sitting in front of the TV, watching the draft selection for Vietnam, and although a couple of years away still, wondering what I might do if drafted. I also recall Kent State. I vividly recollect the news coverage of Muhammad Ali’s refusal to go to war against a people who had done him no harm, and being jailed as a true conscientious objector while in the prime of his career as a pugilist. I remember images of helicopters lifting people away as Saigon fell. And, I remember the nightly news “body counts.”

But there was something of which I was not aware, at least not on any large scale–that is, opposition to the Vietnam War within the soldiers’ own ranks. Displaced Films’ “Sir! No Sir!” is an independently produced movie which reveals that opposition, and the level to which it rose. (Click here for a dial-up version of the movie trailer.)

And while we are thinking about that period in history, why not irk a few people by offering Jane Fonda’s 1970 speech (audio only) to the Fort Bliss GIs For Peace?

Jane Fonda and Michael Alaimo performing with The FTA Show, 1971

Let me go even further, but first recall the words of George Santayana: Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. You might then listen to Martin Luther King, Jr. (audio only) denouncing America’s use of warfare to solve its problems.

A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death. ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

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