Monday, May 29, 2006


I was born in war-torn country, Vietnam. I've seen my people and my countryside destroyed by this war. I've seen people killed in unimaginable ways by weapons of war. I've seen people make unbelievable decisions in times of war.

There is a song in my country ... 1000 years dominated by the Chinese, 100 years dominated by the French, 20 years civil war ... war, war, war. But now, they seem to have peace over there. Americans out, there's peace. Will that happen in Iraq, I wonder.

Ironically, I was studying the Vietnam War from the perspective of Americans when the Twin Towers and Pentagon was struck. The question often posed was 'Why don't we South Vietnamese fight?' I wanted to scream back 'Why should we fight?'. This is a difference in ideas about how to govern a country. You get together and discuss things, you don't kill each other over this.

It was a war I don't understand. I often asked Americans - Why would you send your sons and daughters into a foreign country to fight? I don't think they understand then and I don't think they understand now.

Why do men enlisted? Probably because of all the enticements and benefits that the military advertised. It was a step up for some of them. They probably think about all the idealistic reasons, protecting the country, saving people, etc. I don't think they think about someday they have to go to war and kill someone.

Do I have problems with Americans in my country? If they walk around with no guns, then no ... but if they walk around with guns, I do have a problem. It's the equivalent of saying ... they bring violence into my country. Sure, my country might have some existing violence, but I don't need them to add more violence to it. I wonder if Iraqis are feeling similar sentiments.

Americans, on the other hand, probably expect me to be thankful that they sacrifice their sons and daughters. I am not thankful. I wanted to tell them - stop sending your children into this war-torn country. I just feel sorry. War is stupid, I am sorry to say. Sorry that leaders don't have skills it take to find peaceful solutions and resort to war as the solution.

Yet, Americans should be thankful. Thankful that it has a country that it can stay on and test its ideas about governance. Seeing the status of this country, there are still a lot of room for improvement.

And I, of course, thankful for America to let me immigrate to this country and have another life.

It is ironic that I was in Vietnam when the Vietnam occurred, and now living in the United States when the Iraq war happen. I don't think I understand then, and I don't understand it now, except to say that America choose war because it is afraid of something that might happen in the future, what I don't know.

We have been hearing many negative things about America, so let me end with a positive note. Many people want to immigrate to America, because it is still a shining light. It is in America that they can express themselves more fully. If there is anything that is called 'Hell', that would be to see you have talents, and yet you are not allowed the opportunity to express it. In America, people have this opportunity.

Because of this, America is faced with this 'immigration' problem. If America can help other countries with this issue in a peaceful manner, people in other countries will likely stay in their country and express themselves more fully, and thus resolve the 'immigration' problem.

This also would help further the vision of the New World. Give people the opportunity to express themselves more fully, and thus allow them to experience themselves more fully. This is what we came to this world for. To actualize ourselves.


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