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Unformatted text preview: Various Experiences in Vietnam Bring Different Stories The Vietnam War was an event that greatly affected the United States and its history. Some would say it defined a generation. Although the war in Iraq today has recently been compared to Vietnam, no one can tell if it will have as big as an impact that Vietnam did. While in Vietnam, American soldiers shared the commonality of being at war, but, not everyone had the same type of war experiences. Many soldiers in Vietnam were drafted and forced to fight in the Army. There were those who survived the war and there were those who went away and did not return home. A selected few soldiers in Vietnam became prisoners of war and spent many years under the control of their enemies. These varying frameworks of Vietnam told from different perspectives lead to a multiplicity of stories and ideas about the war that are open for interpretation. Certain aspects within individual accounts may be included or left out of the story, while other narratives will have differing details. Due to fact that Faith of My Fathers, written by John McCain with Mark Salter (1999/2006), is told as a first person account that carries strong cultural, textual, and ethical elements within the narrative, it is a dominantly stronger and easier to read text when compared to other stories about the same war. While the Vietnam War continues to be a source of research and history, its facts remain the same. Many Americans questioned their nation’s involvement in the war. This was a thought that was also prevalent among soldiers who were doing the actual fighting. John McCain, on the other hand, was not someone who questioned the war. His family background and military education made him just the type of soldier the United States was looking for. He was loyal to his country in every aspect and did not back down in times of turmoil. The will that McCain had to protect the ideals of the United States, which he firmly believed in, made him out to be a strong soldier under the control of the Vietnamese. McCain’s account of being a prisoner of war goes into great detail when told. McCain can identify certain aspects of the story in his recollection because he is the person who actually went through the experience. Details such as mental thoughts and physical feelings are aspects that an author writing in third person cannot obtain when writing an account of the story. The quote “I couldn’t rationalize away my confession. I was ashamed. I felt faithless, and couldn’t control my despair. All my pride was lost, and I doubted I would ever stand up to any man again” (McCain, 1999/2006, pg. 378-379) lost, and I doubted I would ever stand up to any man again” (McCain, 1999/2006, pg....
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- Spring '08
- Vietnam War, John McCain