Fifty years ago the U.S. ground war began in South Vietnam. Among the finest documentaries about the conflict is Peter Davis’ Hearts and Minds (1974). Following is an excerpt from a scene in the film:
LAMENT OF A VIETNAMESE FATHER FOR HIS DAUGHTER
My 8 year old daughter was killed, and my 3 year old son.
Nixon murderer of civilians.
What have I done to Nixon so that he comes here to bomb my country?
My daughter died right here. She was feeding the pigs.
She was so sweet.
She is dead. The pigs are alive.
My mother and my children took shelter here. Here they died.
The planes came from over there. No targets here.
Only rice fields and houses.
I’ll give you my daughter’s beautiful shirt.
Take it back to the United States.
Tell them what happened here.
My daughter is dead.
She will never wear the shirt again.
Throw the shirt in Nixon’s face.
Tell him she was only a little schoolgirl.