Many Vietnam Vets were Red as a Baboon's Ass (was Re: [Marxism] ISO: "For a Mass, Non-Exclusionary Antiwar Movement"

Carlos A. Rivera cerejota at
Mon May 16 19:31:03 MDT 2005

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Louis Proyect" <lnp3 at>

> But the movement did not hold the troops accountable. Unless you are 
> talking about the SDS Weathermen, but they were not much of a movement by 
> 1971.

And even themselves counted upon many veterans as part of their military 

The truth is that the single most significant anti-imperialist force in the 
late 60s and early 70s in the USA (and in Puerto Rico) were vietnam 
veterans. All those trained, newly radicalized demolitions experts, snipers 
and battle scarred grunts bore the bulk of the major urban uprisings, in 
particular within the black community (The BPP had A LOT of veterans).

So even then Louis, the example is a bad one.

Whoever blames the warrior for the war is shooting the message and not the 
messenger. Hell, let me use your pet peeve, just for the sake of it, the 
freaking Bolsheviks organized Soldier's soviets, from units of the Czarist 

Socialist when engaged in combat are impecable with the enemy, but have been 
historically the forces that have pursued a clear

I guess Stan Goff testifies to a more recent example in his book on Haiti. 
The Haitian left was much more important in his radicalization than his 
simple sense of decent guilt at the crimes he commited while a soldier.


ps My dad was in the Navy (Pacific Fleet) between 1966 and 1969. He didn't 
serve in Vietnam, but the Artic. He was lucky. But it was the little red 
cafes in the streets of San Diego that made him a commie. 

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