Wednesday, April 10, 2013

In the Year of the Pig (1968)

I never like watching movies about the War of Northern Aggression because that's all we were taught in history class. However, we did not spend one single day covering the Vietnam War, so all this is new to me. Everything I learned about it is from what I have read myself, and I learned a lot from this documentary. This documentary was actually made during the war, not after, so it's like everything is happening in real time.

The first indochina war lasted from 1946 to 1954. So why did the tombstones say in French, "Died March 18. 1885"? And there was another one that said 1876. What is the significance of showing these tombstones if they were from before the war?

We learn from this documentary that we went to Vietnam to stop Communism from taking over. No, we don't really care about the people who live there, we just need to stop Communism.

We don't ever see the documentary makers, but we feel their influence. Remember this: People may not remember what you said, or what you did, but they will always remember how you made them feel. However, this documentary is so dry it doesn't make me feel anything but boredom, but I did learn a lot.

It's rather eerie listening to these congressmen tell us their thoughts when we know what is really going to happen. They keep saying that they don't want to send troops to North Vietnam, and don't want to end lives, yet they think that destroying the military bases there and stopping Communism will be fast and simple. They are so arrogant they have no idea this war will not be fast and simple.

One of them said the "life of one American soldier is worth the lives of 50 chinamen".  He calls the lives of our soldiers "our most precious commodity." Yet when they ask the general why we should go over there, he replies, "Because of communism, our most despicable enemy." He says that we are going to crush Communism quickly, like we should have done in Korea.  Oh, I see. They're doing this because we lost in Korea and are so butthurt about it they're willing to try risking young men's lives again. Let me tell you something generals: My grandfather took shrapnel to the face while fighting in Korea for you assholes.

A senator tells us that we have not bombed civilians  We have simply bombed targets that happen to be in areas surrounded by civilians. What an arrogant jerk. The soldiers give us a different point of view by telling us about the racism and the killings in the area.

This documentary is informative and well put together. It seems that the fact our government lies to us is hardly new. I learned a lot and will give this film a 7/10. However, 1968 is actually the year of the monkey, so I am totally baffled by the title.

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