July 30, 2007, - 3:36 pm

“Good Morning, Vietnam” Personality Praises Schlussel Movie Review . . . With Bone of Contention

By Debbie Schlussel
Adrian Cronauer, the Vietnam Vet on whose life the movie, “Good Morning, Vietnam” was based (he’s the man Robin Williams played) writes me about my review of the fantastic movie, “Rescue Dawn” (the story of Vietnam Vet/Navy Pilot Dieter Dengler’s captivity and heroic escape from a Laotian POW camp). He likes my review but has a bone to pick with me. And he’s 100% right (see below in his e-mail).
(Cronauer was Senior Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Veterans Institute, a trustee of the Virginia War Memorial, a member of the Board of the National Vietnam Veterans Coalition. (Although my research shows he’s now a Special Assistant to the Director of the POW/MIA Office at the Dept. of Defense, Cronauer makes very clear that this e-mail is a strictly personal communication, not made in any capacity as a government employee.)
Adrian Cronauer, Then . . .

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From: Adrian Cronauer
Date: Jul 30, 2007 8:28 AM
Subject: Dengler Review
To: writedebbie@gmail.com
Good (as usual) review of the Dengler film but one, tiny, nit-picking point if I may: we didn’t lose the war in Vietnam, we lost the peace, if we lost anything. Viewed from one perspective, we politically gave up what we had already won militarily. Actually, “we” didn’t do so as a country but, rather, the Dems in Congress–to their everlasting shame–deliberately gave South Viet Nam to the Communists.
When we withdrew our military in 1973, the Viet Cong were still recovering from the defeat they suffered during the Tet Offensive while the South Vietnamese military was more than able to defend their country–but only if they continued to receive equipment, ammunition, other supplies, and miscellaneous logistical support from the U.S. which we promised to give them indefinitely. No sooner had our troops returned home (“victoriously” one could argue) when the liberals (I refuse to use the false designation of “progressive”) in Congress started to pull the plug on South Vietnam. They blocked any funds to support the S. VN military and, hence, it was only a matter of time before the North Vietnamese Communist troops were able to overrun the South and either “re-educate” or massacre all those who were loyal to the South or had anything to do with the Americans.
Would it be too much of a stretch to see what the Dems are doing in Congress now regarding Iraq as a direct parallel?
Yes, I am THAT Adrian Cronauer and as the patch on my black leather vest says, “Vietnam–When I Left, We Were Winning.”
Always enjoy your column. And please keep up the good work.
AC
P.S. And, if anyone should question that the Viet Cong were soundly
defeated during the Tet Offensive, any reputable military historian will confirm that the VC expected Vietnamese peasants to rise up and join the Communists which, of course, never happened. The VC and North Vietnamese forces, therefore, were decimated; it took, literally, years for them to rebuild their strength. This, despite the likes of Walter Cronkite erroneously, and some would say deliberately, reporting the exact opposite.

Thanks, Adrian. And AMEN to all that you wrote. Your “tiny nit-picking point” is not so tiny or nit-picking and is 100% on target.
Adrian Cronauer, Now . . .

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11 Responses

Outstanding Mr. Cronauer. As an aside, when ever I greet someone, at ANY time of day, I always say “Good Morning.” I’ve done that because I’ve ALWAYS admired your work. So, whether it be Good Morning Vietnam, or Good Morning Iraq or Good Morning Afghanistan, thanks, from the bottom of this old vets heart!
Debbie, I’m linking to this in my blog.

G M Roper on July 30, 2007 at 5:03 pm

Adrian Cronauer – “They blocked any funds to support the S. VN military and, hence, it was only a matter of time before the North Vietnamese Communist troops were able to overrun the South and either “re-educate” or massacre all those who were loyal to the South or had anything to do with the Americans.”
Agreed.
“Would it be too much of a stretch to see what the Dems are doing in Congress now regarding Iraq as a direct parallel?”
Yes it would be. Vietnam did not have Islamic Sunnis and Islamic Shiites. BIG DIFFERENCE. Also the ARVN had been performing much better than the sectarian split Iraqi Army and Iraqi police have been.
“Yes, I am THAT Adrian Cronauer and as the patch on my black leather vest says, “Vietnam–When I Left, We Were Winning.””
When I left (1972) frankly we were just pretty much sitting there.

feralcat9 on July 30, 2007 at 5:06 pm

feralcat9: Agreed, it’s not a “direct parallel,” as Mr. Cronauer had stated, but (precisely) like Vietnam, the modern version of the 1972 Deafeatocrats is doing virtually the same thing with their incessant “We’ve already lost,” and “There’s no way in Hell we can win” BS, 24/7/365.
And, hmmmmmm —- looks like the modern Defeatocrats and their kameraden in the drive-by media have suddenly begun to “change their tune,” as it were, with the latest reports on the Surge (working!). ONLY because it’s so hard to ignore the reality (thanks mainly to the milbloggers and the “alternative” media) are we getting something approaching the truth out of the drive-bys (pretty much, take anything they say, turn it around 180 degrees, and you’ve got something approximating the truth).
The current set of Defeatocrats are scared to death of what’s going to happen on Election Day, 2008 — they know that Hillary is NOT a “popular” candidate, that Rudy (the front-runner for now, anyway) will crush her in a nationwide election, etc. So, they’re doing everything they can to insure that Bush and the Republicans LOSE this war in Iraq, just like they “lost” the Vietnam War under Nixon and Kissinger (regardless of the fact that LBJ got us into it in the first place, with JFK having ordered the murder of the Diems, just about a month before he himself was assasinated in Dallas, 1963).
Failing that, however, they can at least trumpet that Hillary has never recanted her vote authorizing the deployment in 2003 (even though she hasn’t done a damn thing to assist America in actually winning the thing, since then!). That gives her a boost over Obama and Edwards (two non-entities if I ever saw them), and Hills can proclaim “I supported the War in Iraq” should things turn out swimmingly in just a few months time. Guess we’ll see just how effective that is, soon enough!

theendisnear on July 30, 2007 at 6:24 pm

theendisnear – “The current set of Defeatocrats are scared to death of what’s going to happen on Election Day, 2008 — they know that Hillary is NOT a “popular” candidate, that Rudy (the front-runner for now, anyway) will crush her in a nationwide election, etc.”
I will not vote for Hillary (for obvious reasons) nor will I vote for Rudolph “Sanctuary City Mayor” Giuliani if he gets the Republican nomination and if Giuliania does not find a way to in effect “Run against Bush” he is more likely to be the crushee rather than the crusher.

feralcat9 on July 30, 2007 at 6:46 pm

AC,
As long as your Special BS assistant to DOD why don’t you suggest we stop boxing the Vietnamese in, demanding just bones. God forbid there are any prisoners still alive, the “G” has made it impossible for them to admit it. Same goes with double emphasis with Laos. And before they all die how about paying the IOU they “G” promised our Japanese POWs. Put that in your “Good Morning”.

code7 on July 30, 2007 at 10:36 pm

The democrats know that unless they can make Iraq fail, they will have a tough time getting anyone elected in 2008. God forbid that Iraq becomes peaceful and stable before the election.
I linked to your article from my post: Now if only the New York Times had some Credibility
http://plancksconstant.org/blog1/2007/07/now_if_only_the_new.html

planck's constant on July 30, 2007 at 11:43 pm

At every opportunity I trot out this site because it knows where all the bodies are buried. http://www.hnn.us/articles/31400.html Coincidentially I posted something similar to Adrian’s on http://www.patdollard.com just this morning. As of now the article has moved down to the bottom of today’s articles. If it has you can put in the search “Political Cover for Whom?” If you go there it’ll save me from having to type it all over again for the 92d time. I have a feeling Adrian and I will have to type what happened quite a few times more before the election. Creatures like kerry are starting to re-write history and he has to be called on it everytime he’s caught.

John Cunningham on July 31, 2007 at 1:33 am

Kerry took his daughters with him on his MIA/POW mission to North Vietnam because he knew the whole thing was a sham. “Pull some bones out of our warehouse for Mr. Kerry’s trip home so we all look good”. They damm near hit the jackpot with their shameful lobby effort with Kerry.
I talked to two villagers that trapped a Japanese soldier stealing their vegetables at night. He had been living in a cave, still had his uniform folded neatly in a corner, and this was mid 1990’s fifty years after the war!
One of our guys breaks cover over there and he will be killed because he won’t fit into the political agreement the U.S. and Vietnam continue to work.
If everyone is so sure there is no one left alive, then offer the Vietnamese double their foreign aid if they can produce a live serviceman regardless of where they find him: Laos, North Korea, China ect.
The Russians were still releasing Germans into the 1950s, the U.S. held Japanese prisoners to fight the Vietnamese insurgents, and the French bought back their live prisoners decades after their war in Vietnam ended. In Vietnamese poker, you are never “all in”. They hold back chips, but fat boy Kissinger refused to call them and now were stuck unless we change course.
Hey AC, just call me crazy because that is what the standard mantra is regarding MIAs. If the Japanese can hold out for a half century, then why can’t our guys?
If you work the MIA/POW cause, YOU”RE FIRED! Step aside, because even if sophisticated U.S. intelligence has proof, do you think they would share it? You know they wouldn’t. So who’s looking for these guys? No one.

code7 on July 31, 2007 at 7:36 am

Code 7, how ya’ doin’? One more thing in addition to that melatonin I told you about, I forgot to mention turkey. Not processed turkey but ‘real’ turkey. It has l-tryptophan in it and is said to help with sleeping problems. You can buy it at a vitamin store but some have said that’s not always a good way to take it. I’ve become addicted to a good turkey hoagie with double meat from a deli, about five a week.

John Cunningham on July 31, 2007 at 1:23 pm

Hey JC,
It’s just one of those things when you get older, maybe I should try some light reading like Hilary’s “It takes a lunatic” book.

code7 on July 31, 2007 at 8:14 pm

feralcat9: “I will not vote for Hillary (for obvious reasons) [Thank you!] nor will I vote for Rudolph “Sanctuary City Mayor” Giuliani if he gets the Republican nomination [he's not my preference either, just stating a fact; I still like Fred Thompson, but with his recent choice of Pan-Islamist Jihadist-Suck-up Spencer Ibrahim to head his campaign, Fred "chose poorly," to quote the knight in Indiana Jones III, and to make an understatement] and if Giuliania does not find a way to in effect ‘Run against Bush’ he is more likely to be the crushee rather than the crusher [that's quite possible, should he even get the nomination, of course, though I can't see Shrillary herself doing the "crushing" -- "Clinton, Inc.," however, is another matter!].”

theendisnear on July 31, 2007 at 10:38 pm

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