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After 24 combat operations in Vietnam, we knew we wouldn't succeed

To The Daily Sun,

Very early in 1969 I was watching news on television with my mother. President Nixon was speaking. I sat up and took special notice when he said, "I have not sent troops into Laos." To say the least, I was flabbergasted. I turned to my mother in disbelief and muttered, "But we were there just a couple weeks ago."

I served with a golf company and a hotel company and served once with Echo. I participated in 24 combat operations, so had enough time to understand that there was something terribly wrong with the way the war was fought. Enemy supplies were getting into South Vietnam via the Ho Chi Minh trail. And from what I understood talking to pilots, they were not permitted to bomb it. So what they did was to save one bomb from their missions and stray over to the trail and drop one bomb. Many in my unit knew we would never succeed if we fought the war like we did Korea. It finally turned out that way.

Another thing that bothered anyone who gave any thought to history: during World War II we loaned Russia what we referred to as Liberty Ships. They never returned them. And was now using them to ship supplies to North Vietnam. And we found supplies that had been furnished to North Vietnam via the United Nations.

In late 1968 my unit met up with 3rd Recon in Laos near a road. Russian trucks were found and other Russian battle equipment. Soon the sky was filled with Hu1es, not to assist but they commenced firing upon the recon unit. Luckily the recon Marines were well trained and survived the ordeal. We never knew who sent the helicopters. We had felt that headquarters was infiltrated, perhaps by United Nations personnel.

Another time we were called out on an operation at night. When we landed, a radio operator looked baffled and handed me the handset. It was Hanoi Hanna with these words, "Good morning Gold company, we would like to welcome you to......" We had not known where we were going but the enemy did. General Douglas MacArthur found this same occurrences during the Korean war. That was one reason he made the Inchon landing as secret as possible.

Prisoners had been taken by the North Vietnam Army during the battle of Hue. Hundreds were brought outside the citadel and executed. It did not appear to catch interest of the controlled media. My unit marched three days without water or rations to rescue prisoners who were being taking to Laos. Not minutes after engaging the enemy we were ordered to break off. We bean to feel that we were in the middle of a large chess game being played by some secret government. Pawns in some terrible game.

The summer of 1969 was worse than my time in Vietnam. I was glad I made it home safely. But things got worse. Racial attacks occurred until one night in July a friend was killed by a mob of malcontents. They were given special privileges but still were not satisfied. Life magazine did a story on the killing and leaned toward blaming the victims. Their rationale was ludicrous. I wrote the magazine and explained I was there and gave what I saw. I still have their response. It serves as a constant reminder how twisted the media can be.

I spent time in a Navy Hospital during the summer of 1968 but cannot find any record of it. My mother was contacted three times and a brother and sister remember it well. So to all those who make a claim that if the government doesn't have a record of it, it didn't occur, you have not looked hard enough.

My good friend Bob Smith was a U.S. Senator on a committee with John Kerry and John McCain investigating POWs. They had enough documents to prove there were still POWs being held in Vietnam. So what did Kerry and McCain do. They voted over Smith's objections and had the records destroyed. So does that mean there were no POWs? Even Casey, ahead of the CIA claimed if the people knew this injustice they would be furious.

During Bill Clinton's presidency he ordered all covert action records destroyed. So here again there are soldiers who cannot prove they were in combat or even wounded. Does the destruction of records prove it didn't happen? No, It shows that there is another side to politics and foreign relations.

The Democrats were vociferous over Nixon's missing 18 minutes of tape recordings, but are collectively silent over thousands of e-mails in the Hillary's State Department and missing e-mails and memos within the Internal Revenue Service. So, does it mean that if its been censored, deleted, lost, hidden, misplaced, or stolen it didn't exist? That goes for every department within the federal government, even the Center for Disease Control.

Redact is a familiar term with anyone who has dealt with getting records and information from the government through the Freedom of Information Act. The proper definition is "To Force; to reduce to form." But has become an acceptable substitute for "delete" and "omit."

Gene F. Danforth


Last Updated on Friday, 20 March 2015 09:37

Hits: 128

Finishing 3rd gave me good incentive to apply for appointment

To The Daily Sun,

I would like to take the time to thank the 320 people who voted for me to be on the Meredith Selectboard. Like Mike Hatch remarked, running was a very good experience and a lot of fun. However, the town could not lose, I had a tough time deciding whom I would vote for given the well qualified candidates.

Having finished third was good incentive for me to decide to apply for one of the open positions. I believe with my small-business background and years of holding a position on the town's Zoning Board of Adjustment, as well as being on the younger end of the spectrum, I feel I could add a different type of job skill to complement the board that is in place.

Should I be fortunate enough to be appointed, I will approach that "job" as I do my own business, with hard work and integrity, and I will work along with the rest of the board for the people.

Mike Pelczar


Last Updated on Friday, 20 March 2015 09:30

Hits: 164

When GOP has enough power, every student will have a chance

To The Daily Sun,

I share Leon R. Albushies's concern (see his March 11 letter) about our failing public schools and what that means for our society, freedoms, and prosperity. Public education has been declining for at least the last 50 years, especially since the federal government has increasingly controlled public education.

Why do our public schools provide such poor results? Are American children less capable than other children before they go to our public schools? No. Is funding the issue? No. Some schools with the worst results spend $25,000 to $30,000 per student. Public education costs have increased as fast as health-care costs, but without improvements.
Our public schools don't provide better educational results because providing better educations to our children is a lower priority than the self-interests of those in charge of public education, the educational establishment (e.g., teachers colleges, unions, administrators, teachers, government bureaucracy), and Democrat politicians.

Recognizing the importance of providing a good education to each new generation, Republicans have been championing school choice, which would allow students to escape failing and/or dangerous schools. Essentially the money that taxpayers provide to fund children's education would be directed by parents to the schools of their choice. This would break the public school monopoly and reward the schools (e.g., public, private, parochial) that provide better educations.

Unfortunately Democrat politicians fight school choice despite its popularity and success when it is available. Wealthy Democrats such as President Obama and New Hampshire Senator Hosmer send their children to the schools of their choice, but they deny the opportunity for other children to get a decent education.

One of President Obama's first acts was to stop the popular and successful school choice pilot program in Washington, D.C. In New Hampshire, Democrats fought and have tried to end the scholarship program created by Republicans to help children from poor families escape failing and perhaps dangerous schools.

Republican efforts to provide school choice so each child can get a good education are viciously opposed by Democrat politicians who benefit politically from the current back-scratching arrangement with the educational establishment. Democrats vote more money and privileges for the educational establishment which then provides political support for Democrat politicians.

Every American child will have the chance for a decent education when Republicans have enough political power to enact school choice for all over Democrat objections or when Democrat politicians decide to prioritize children's education above the self-interests of the education establishment.

Don Ewing

Last Updated on Friday, 20 March 2015 09:26

Hits: 101

Good job on fireworks article; responsible people won't be punished

To The Daily Sun,

I would like to thank the people who held my campaign signs at the Gilford polls: my mom and dad, Thelma and Harry A. Bean, Jean Ferreira, my sisters Cindy Murphy and Sheri Dow, my grandson Harry S. Bean, V and Michelle Dargy. (I was out of town on a prior work-related commitment.)

I would like to thank all of those who wrote letters to the editors of local papers for their very kind words of support: Rep. Russ Dumais, Rep. George Hurt, Pastor John Sanborn, Past Mayor of Laconia and CEO of Apple Mortgage Karl Reitz, and Sarah E. Anderson.

To anyone I have not recognized, I give you my most humble apology.

And last but definitely not least, I would like to thank all of you who have placed your trust in me to do all I can do to see to it that your tax dollars are spent responsibly and not unnecessarily.

Congratulations to all who have won the election, especially my fellow Budget Committee running mates Norm J. Silber and Leslie Suranyi Jr..

P.S. Good job on Article 26. Almost 70 percent of you voted to allow but regulate fireworks. Now only the ones who use fireworks irresponsibly will pay the price rather than all of us.

Harry H. Bean


Last Updated on Friday, 20 March 2015 09:23

Hits: 88

Alcohol is still number 1 addictive drug that can lead to death

To The Daily Sun,

The New Hampshire state Senate has recently passed a bill in favor of medical marijuana and decriminalization. Some states have already made pot legal for recreational purposes and as profits increase; other states will follow. Ironically, this is also a changing time when brain imaging technology has advanced to such a degree that brain plasticity changes are much easier for neurologists to observe and monitor.

They can understand much more precisely how repetitive thought, trauma and strong emotions seem to seriously effect how the brain grows.

While some believe that huge increases in tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)-the psychoactive chemical in marijuana, will cause overt negative deterioration in brain development, other scientists say it will somehow help protect the brain.

The point here is that debate may probably never end. But over time, as marijuana becomes more legal, potent and available it will probably present some unanticipated negative as well as positive outcomes.

A century ago the average person in the U.S. consumed three to four pounds of sugar each year. These days that amount has increased to about 85 pounds or more and one consequence is that many more Americans struggle with weight problems. Also, diabetes and other overweight-related health problems have soared because of the increased availability of foods that a percentage of people over consume, or perhaps become addicted to.

During the 1970s, when the legal drinking age in several states was lowered to 18 and alcohol was made available to a larger number of younger people, there were significant pros and cons that resulted. More money was made but many lives were lost.

Alcohol is still the number one addictive drug that can lead to death, incarceration as well as causing physical, occupational and psychological debilitation because of how it affects the brain and its deep entrenchment and acceptance in our culture. Cannabis, in terms of behavioral changes is less dangerous than alcohol, but from my perspective as a long-term addiction treatment counselor as well as having been in recovery for many years, it would be great if all potentially habit-forming substances would just go away for good. But that's not happening any time soon.

One argument is that only 5 to 10 percent of those who consume any alcohol at all, actually drink it irresponsibly or alcoholically. The other 90 percent should have their right to imbibe. Of course, that 10 percent consumes at least 80 percent of all the beer and liquor that is sold. If it weren't for the active alcoholics, liquor profits would be mediocre at best.

The seemingly inevitable decriminalization and possibly full legalization of pot may provide some advantages such as an additional funding resource for treatment of addictions to more dangerous drugs like pharmaceutical pain meds and heroin. Maybe there would be a percentage of young adults who, during their youthful intoxicant experimentation right-of-passage, ultimately choose marijuana as a social substance instead of alcohol. If that were to happen even to a small degree, the result would likely be a diminished domestic violence problem, which the police wouldn't mind and fewer fatal car crashes preventing horrendous grief and loss in families.

But if marijuana companies compete in the free and legal market to offer the best product, will the levels of psychoactive chemicals and their bi-products increase exponentially? Years down the line will some totally unpredicted cannabis related health issue prevail? I know that sounds a bit dramatic, but we need to remember that less than 50 years ago, cigarettes and tobacco products that were around for centuries, were still being advertised on TV as potentially healthful and beneficial (soft drinks, too) to the young, active and good-looking generation — the Americans of the 1960s. A lot of money was made, and lives are still being lost

Michael Tensel

A&D Recovery Counseling


Last Updated on Friday, 20 March 2015 09:18

Hits: 76

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