Not so Honest but Necessary
Dec 4, 2012
What really happened in history are many times different from popular stories told to the public, or remembered by the people. Before a military intervention is implemented, the men in power would find a justification for the war, so it is supported by the people. For instance, in medieval Europe, religion was used as justifications for the Crusades. In modern days, justifications for US military interventions include not only religion, but also its self-claimed function as the world’s police to liberate other nation states as it sees fit.
During World War II, the US saved the Allies from its impending doom and contributed significantly in the defeat of the opposing Nazi forces. Therefore, the status of world’s super power and police had been without questioning until Vietnam War. With the initial intention of fulfilling its duty as the world’s police, liberating the people of Vietnam from the evil Communist rule, and to provide the long-dreamed freedom to the Vietnamese people, the US after exhausting much of its men power and resources, came back with a broken reputation, wounded veterans and refugees with no homes to return to. On the other hand, Vietnam remains very much Communist. I strongly believe that the real difficult part of the “difficult memory” is “whether the war is just”, or “whether we lost the war”, but instead “whether we are as strong and powerful as we believe we are”1. In order to rebuild the country’s reputation, and reconstruct its people’s faith in its military power and world status, the US media has been trying to biasedly portray the war or the outcomes of the war. Such strategy is not so honest from a historical perspective for it does not capture what really happened, however it is necessary for a country as a whole to move forward from its difficult memory.
In the article, the author provided an in-depth analysis of why and how popular media has helped reshape the vi...