PBS is currently airing a ten-part documentary about the Vietnam War by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick that is financed by the Koch Brothers and Bank of America and promoted by the Pentagon. We speak with Vietnam scholar, Professor Bob Buzzanco about the real history of the Vietnam War, what led to it and the opposition that developed. He emphasizes that it is important to understand this history so that we do not repeat it in North Korea or the Middle East. Then we speak with Vietnam Vet, David Ross, about his experiences in Vietnam and subsequently in organizing veterans to stop the war.
Relevant articles and websites:
Masters of War: Military Dissent and Politics in the Vietnam Era by Dr. Bob Buzzanco
The Vietnam War – Free video lectures by Dr. Bob Buzzanco
Robert Buzzanco is a scholar of 20th Century U.S. History and Diplomatic History. He is also one of the nation’s leading authorities on the Vietnam War and the dynamics that encompassed this time period. Buzzanco received his Ph.D. from The Ohio State University. Buzzanco has lectured at national conferences on the Second Gulf War, globalization, and the influence of the industrial military complex. Among his other many professional activities, he has served as the Chair of the Stuart L. Bernath Lecture Prize Committee for Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations. Dr. Buzzanco has also contributed to national newspapers and magazines such as the Baltimore Sun, Houston Chronicle and Newsday magazine. He has been interviewed or cited by various international media such as the BBC, NPR, Financial times, Al-Jazeerra and the Islamic News Network. Dr. Buzzanco teaches a variety of courses in U.S. history, including, at the undergraduate level, both halves of the survey, the history of the Vietnam War, America in the 1960s, and U.S. foreign policy, as well as a new course in 2004 titled “War, Globalization and Terror.” He has also taught graduate courses on the Vietnam War, post-1945 U.S. History, and U.S. foreign relations (“Empire, War, and Diplomacy”), as well as numerous research seminars. Buzzanco has been the advisor on many dissertation thesis committees.
David Ross is a Vietnam veteran who lives in Vermont. He is a retired business man who has been organizing and advocating for veterans and on a variety of related issues for 50 years. He was a leader of Vietnam Veterans Against the War, a student activist at Syracuse University and a co-founder of Veterans for Peace in Vermont. He co-hosts with David Ransom “Rights and Democracy,” a TV show that airs widely on local Vermont networks. Ross was one of the people who won Congressional legislation for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.