Facilitated by community radio producer extraordinaire, Jimmy Tardy, a couple of our chapter’s Vietnam veterans have launched a special “radiozine” series on KBOO (90.7 FM). The two shows aired thus far are in the Vietnam: Full Disclosure vein. In a nutshell, this national VFP campaign is about offering an alternative, more honest commemoration of the American War in Vietnam in response to the US Department of Defense’s thirteen-year effort, kicked off in 2012, to mythologize and trumpet the Vietnam War as a noble cause, to culminate in 2025 with the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the end of that war!
Jimmy Tardy, Mike Hastie and S. Brian Willson have taken it upon themselves to bring some of the stories the DoD won’t be sharing, to listeners in Portland and around the globe, via KBOO community supported radio technology. And they’re off to a rocking start. (Descriptions below, by Tardy, are excerpted from the KBOO website.)
This show, aired April 30, 2014, features a conversation with Kent State shootings survivor Joe Lewis. Joe was the closest shooting victim to the National Guard unit that opened fire on students protesting the announced expansion of the Vietnam War into Laos and Cambodia.
Larry Colburn was one of the door gunners on Chief Warrant Officer Hugh Thompson’s helicopter when the three-man crew intervened in what may have been an everyday massacre by American troops in Vietnam, the one that occurred on March 16, 1970 in My Lai, Vietnam. When the American public, including new soldiers being sent to Vietnam, found out about My Lai after pictures of the aftermath were printed in Life magazine, it sparked such an outcry that many people feel it deserves a place as one of the nails in the coffin of the Vietnam War. In this segment, Jimmy Tardy, Brian Willson, and Mike Hastie talk with Larry Colburn about My Lai, what it represents, and what it felt like to be in the middle of this historic, heroic moment.