To the Editor:
It’s unfortunate that, more than four decades after I came home from Vietnam, some veterans continue to downplay the sacrifices we made there.
As reported in the Oct. 13 edition of The Free Press Standard, retired U.S. Marine Captain Charles Pearson said in a speech to the Carroll County Republican Party, “However, the Marines survived Korea, where more souls were lost within a three-year period than in 10 years in Vietnam.”
This statement is patently false.
The Vietnam War lasted from Aug. 4, 1964, to Jan. 27, 1973. That’s eight and one-half years, not 10. More importantly, though 58,272
American soldiers, Marines, sailors, and airmen were killed, including 33,574 battle deaths.
During the Korean War, from June 25, 1950, to July 27, 1953, 36,407 courageous Americans were killed, including 33,574 battle deaths.
No matter how you add it up, many more American souls were lost in Vietnam than in Korea.
Furthermore, comparing apples to apples, during the three-year height of the Vietnam War – 1967 to 1969 – 39,361 of my brothers were killed. That’s nearly 3,000 more than during the three-year height of the Korean War.
None of this means that one war is more or less horrible than another war. They’re all horrible. But people who are afforded the privilege of speaking with authority should get their facts straight.