Letters: Death in Vietnam, Toy Cameras
DEBBIE ELLIOTT, host:
And now your comments.
We got a lot of mail after last weekend's conversation with two military veterans on the debate over when to withdraw from Iraq. Several listeners were astonish to hear one of our guests comment that, quote, "when we pulled out of Vietnam in '75, a million people were slaughtered, and that could happen just as easily in Iraq if we don't do the job the right way." Listener Edward Kranz(ph) writes: `As far I know, no one else has made that claim. Whatever difficulties our supporters may have faced when we left, mass slaughter was not among them.'
For the record, a reference book called Warfare and Armed Conflicts tries to gives an accurate count of casualties in Vietnam after the US troop pullout in 1972. The book acknowledges that numbers provided by both the North and South Vietnamese are suspect, but the total combat and civilian deaths do not reach a million.
Listener Charles Miller(ph) was inspired to weigh in after hearing a photographer on our program glorify the low-tech toy camera. `Certainly,' Miller writes, `there are those who find beauty in accidental light leaks, double exposures and temperature-damaged film. I suppose some fanciful viewer might find depth and meaning in a completely exposed, blank roll of film for that matter. But, to borrow from Freud, "sometimes a bad photo is simply a bad photo."'
We invite your feedback. Go to our home page, npr.org, and click on `Contact us.'
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.