May 7, 2004: Headlines: COS - Barbados: Iraq: Speaking Out: Barbados Daily Nation: My friend, a Peace Corps Volunteer, always went the extra mile. Now his son is helping America become the most hated country on earth.

Peace Corps Online: Peace Corps News: Headlines: May 2004 Peace Corps Headline: May 7, 2004: Headlines: COS - Barbados: Iraq: Speaking Out: Barbados Daily Nation: My friend, a Peace Corps Volunteer, always went the extra mile. Now his son is helping America become the most hated country on earth.

By Admin1 (admin) ( on Saturday, May 08, 2004 - 8:11 pm: Edit Post

My friend, a Peace Corps Volunteer, always went the extra mile. Now his son is helping America become the most hated country on earth.

My friend, a Peace Corps Volunteer, always went the extra mile.  Now his son is helping America become the most hated country on earth.

My friend, a Peace Corps Volunteer, always went the extra mile. Now his son is helping America become the most hated country on earth.

We Need Hugh Now – The Lowdown -

Friday 07, May-2004

by Richard Hoad

South Vietnam, 8 a.m., March 16, 1968: United States soldiers from Charlie Company, 11th Brigade, Americal Division under the orders of Lt. William Calley entered the village of Mi Lai and started killing unarmed civilians, primarily old men, women, children and babies.

“They laughed as they raped and sodomised women, they ripped vaginas open with their knives, they bayonetted babies, they scalped corpses, they carved ‘C Company’ or the ace of spades onto chests. At no stage did they receive any resistance except for further pleadings,” writes Joanna Bourke in Men and Killing.

By lunch-time they had killed 347 (some sources say 500). The incident was kept from the American public for some months but eventually Calley was tried and convicted of premeditated murder and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Two days later, he was released on orders from President Nixon.

The recent American slaughter of Iraqi civilians in Fallujah and torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison have been compared to the Mi Lai massacre.

Apparently Americans aren’t much upset by such events. Two-thirds of those polled about the Mi Lai massacre “had no problems with it”. Many weren’t shocked about the Abu Ghraib prison tortures. “After all,” as William Calley wrote, “what the hell else is war than killing people?”

United States army psychiatrists and chaplains are trained in “de-responsibilising” troops to remove any feelings of guilt over those they have killed.

All this is hard to swallow for those of us who grew up worshipping Americans as heroes. I even had my personal real-life American hero.

 Peace Corps Volunteer

This guy always went the extra mile. He was a United States Peace Corps volunteer and kept urging me to improve. Came down many Sundays to help load hay. Got parts for me from the States. Our families bonded and we kept in touch for some years. He later went to South Africa to live amongst and assist the black farmers in the Ciskei homeland. They gave him a tribal name and adopted him. He taught them how to grow sweet potatoes. "They are people, families, with desires – just like you and I,” he told a Nazarene Church congregation on his return. I wonder if he passed on that fact to his sons.

In early January, I got a call from his wife. Their first son, who was born in Barbados, is a marine and needed to renounce his Bajan citizenship to go fight in Iraq. We got it done just in time.

  U.S. Army military policeman Philip Cyrus from China, Maine, watches over a group of detainees at the Abu Ghraib Prison on the outskirts of Baghdad, Iraq (news - web sites) Saturday, May 8, 2004. Cyrus and fellow members of the 152nd Field Artilary were retrained as MPs and were deployed to the prison earlier this year after the departure of some American soldiers under investigation for prisoner abuse. Cryus' shotgun was loaded with a non-lethal shell containing rubber pellets.(AP Photo/John Moore)

How things change! The father, a true Christian, devoted his life to helping those less fortunate. He won friends and influenced people for America around the world. The son is part of George Bush’s killing machine and loves it. “It’s all coming to an end rather quickly,” he wrote recently, “which is a shame. I’m having the time of my life.” He is helping America become the most hated country on earth.

Every night I check for him on a website called “Faces of the slain”. And weep for the young Americans, some still teenagers, and Iraqis cut down in Bush’s rampage.

Back to Mi Lai, March 16, 1968. At midday, a United States army crew landed a helicopter between Calley’s troops and the few Vietnamese left alive. The pilot, Warrant Officer Hugh Thompson, trained his guns on his fellow Americans and told them he would open fire if they didn’t stop the killing. He conducted the remaining villagers to safety.

America now finds itself as the only superpower. Led by a man with no feelings of justice, fairplay, truth or decency, it is bullying its way around the world with little regard for human suffering.

The time has come for another American Hugh Thompson to land his helicopter on the White House lawn and bring this mad regime to its senses. Stop the killing now.

Richard Hoad is a farmer and social commentator.

Some postings on Peace Corps Online are provided to the individual members of this group without permission of the copyright owner for the non-profit purposes of criticism, comment, education, scholarship, and research under the "Fair Use" provisions of U.S. Government copyright laws and they may not be distributed further without permission of the copyright owner. Peace Corps Online does not vouch for the accuracy of the content of the postings, which is the sole responsibility of the copyright holder.

Story Source: Barbados Daily Nation

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Barbados; Iraq; Speaking Out



By Susan Bryant ( - on Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 10:34 am: Edit Post

I am no longer proud to be an American. The President must get rid of Rumsfeld, and do it now. He defeats the effort to build a sense of security for Americans both abroad and at home in our urban transit systems.

By Miguel Eduardo Gomez/Pacheco (megomez) ( - on Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 3:07 pm: Edit Post

Ms. Bryant sais: "I am no longer proud to be an American".

Well....that looks like part of the answere to your question: "Is American becoming the most hated country on earth?"

As long as you have Peace Corps politicising (sp?) and Vietnamizing, as John Kerry is doing, the war in Iraq then yes, your campaign to demonize our President will have a Public Relations affect.

By the way...this is a good way to support the Terrorists cause & get our soldiers killed. Congratulations Ms. Bryant & all you misguided left wing RPCV's on a job well done!


By John Prybot ( on Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 6:14 pm: Edit Post

The ugly realities of what our country has gotten itself commited to by our president and those in his administration who worked so determinedly to get us there are for me a deeply disturbing repetition of the same political manipulation that schemed to put us into Vietnam that was the single most influential factor in having me choose Peace Corps service as a constructive alternative to participating in a war that seemed wrong in every aspect and against my conscience to promote or support in any way. How tragically true for our country and for those who must suffer the consequences of our arrogent shortsightedness the saying to the effect that those nations who fail to learn the lessons of their past mistakers are condemned to repeat them". John Prybot--Guatemala
1970 - 1978 (San
Pedro La Laguna, Solola)

By Vinson Straub ( - on Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 8:11 pm: Edit Post

As a RPCV (Panama, '70-'71), both the pre-war drum beating, the war and these terrible consequences illustrate several discouraging anti-democratic trends in recent history: (1)Congress, beginning with the Tonkin Gulf resolution, has nearly abandoned its authority and responsibility for formally declaring war; (2) our federal leaders, under both parties, do not read or understand history and certainly take no lessons from it; (3)(it has become ok., in Vietnam, Granada, Panama, Iraq, etc.) for a President to launch military adventures with political impunity, whether outcomes are positive or negative; and (4)we are willing to watch our own civil liberties diminished in order to "save" those same liberties.
My personal view of the Iraq situation is that the war was undertaken as a diversion from the harder and longer task of defeating Al Queda in a multi-year, mostly secret, unspectacular struggle. We had a visible boogie-man and we went after him. Congress caved in and many bought the other rationales even though hard evidence never emerged.
To make matters worse, in a potentially long-term shift which already is having bad consequences, we changed our foreign policy to suit the new circumstances, permitting unilateral intervention whenever and where-ever the President deems necessary. This is the scariest change among those I've mentioned and surely a ticket to almost universal animosity in the world community.
So, will we be the most hated nation? Sure looks like we are fulfilling Pogo's semi-famous quote, "We have met the enemy and he is us." But we still live in a democracy, and I'm hoping enough sanity will return that these counter-productive policies will be rescinded.
Finally, I respectfully disagree with Miguel's comments. Lamenting these disgraceful actions of our troops is a sentiment I certainly share and is in no way unpatriotic. You would think the least intelligent among them would have realized this treatment was illegal and counter to winning over these former soldiers as friends, not to mention the adverse consequences of publication. Al Queda couldn't have paid us enough to supply such a shameful display of the worst in human nature. I'm confident the President and most of higher officialdom would have stopped this early on. But you do wonder who was (or were) the squelcher(s) at some lower level who didn't take remedial action when the Red Cross brought these matters to their attention last year. I think the real culpability resides there.At least we may finally have the public debate that should have occurred last year, but what a high cost we've paid for nonchalance. Peace from the Bluegrass, Vinson Straub

By Zachary_jean ( - on Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - 9:35 am: Edit Post

Richard Hoad writes: “The time has come for another American Hugh Thompson to land his helicopter on the White House lawn and bring this mad regime to its senses.” With that simple sentence, Mr. Hoad summed up exactly why the Bush Administration was given carte blanche to behave in whatever way it wanted. We let him.

Besides a small group of “war protestors” last year publishing a great book of poetry, “Poets Against the War,” (and you can see the effect that book had) there was hardly a ripple of protest when Bush said “it’s time to invade Iraq.” I don’t mean letter writing, which our middle class does so well, waxing poetic on the evils of the world, but actually shutting down our system…getting out of the house…going without for a while…cuz’ the time is right for fighting in the street, boy…showing that those few liberals who remain in our country are made of sterner stuff than waiting for another “hero” to do all the dirty work and take a stand. But, apparently, they’re not and nothing really happened as protest (the war has been going on for how long and what were you doing?) and now everyone acts so shocked that we, as a people, are seen as once again actually being brutal. I suppose all we need to do is drop a few more bunker-busting bombs and the problem will go away.

“After all,” William Calley wrote, “what the hell else is war than killing people?” Yes, we are killing people and for many that makes us morally no different than our enemies, not because our cause is just or right but because our people go along so lackadaisical and indifferent about it. What little opposing views there are are immediately thrashed. Look at these PC responses so far; RPCVs attack each other’s “patroitism” (I can’t think of any higher form of patroitism than serving in Peace Corps; volunteering to help make this world better than being indifferent or actively destroying it) and the word “terrorist” has replaced what “communist” once functioned as in our society; a semi-effective silencing tool. It’s true that every culture needs a devil to dehumanize, we are no different than anyone else and as for waiting for another American Hugh Thompson to fall out of the sky and save the day? I live in a country full of them, too bad they’re so inapt.

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