"I have a completely different interpretation of the below statements than you, and I thought you might review what you'd written."

At 06:34 PM 6/13/98 +0000, you wrote:
The field values for the form received were:

Name="Elizabeth Seit"
email="seit@buffnet.net" comments="Richard,
I've been enjoying reading your pages. I think your writings have been very thoughtful as well as thought-provoking.

However, I have a completely different interpretation of the below statements than you, and I thought you might review what you'd written. You said (in reference to Jane Fonda):

"To her credit, during a 20/20 television interview sixteen years later in 1988 with Barbara Walters, Jane Fonda apologized for her incredibly bad judgement in going to North Vietnam and allowing herself to be used as a propaganda vehicle."

You'd quoted her as saying:

"I would like to say something, not just to Vietnam veterans in New England, but to men who were in Vietnam, who I hurt, or whose pain I caused to deepen because of things that I said or did," she began. [A]"I was trying to help end the killing and the war, but [B]there were times when I was thoughtless and careless about it and I'm . . . very sorry that I hurt them. And I want to apologize to them and their families."

I don't actually read that as her apologizing for being "used as a propoganda vehicle" - in fact, I read her as saying that she still opposed the war, would still intend to stop the killing, but that she apologizes for the pain she caused by her thoughtlessness and carelessness. My interpretation stems from analyzing her second sentence. "But" is a contrastive conjunction which contrasts [A] with [B]. She therefore isn't apologizing for [A] _and_ [B]. The two are opposed (in her speaking). I believe she is apologizing for [B], while holding onto [A].

In other words, she still agrees with [A] - the ending of the war and the killing of Vietnamese peasants and civilians, but apologizes for [B] - her role in hurting American servicemen.



My husband, Sean, is here and he wants to add something:

On reading through your transcript of Jane's broadcast and the various responses, I'm trying to decide what makes this "propoganda". Certainly what she said is one-sided but I am interested to know if Jane was misleading people, or lying? Were her statements investigated and shown to be false? If so then I can agree with you that they warrant an apology. If not, I don't see how they are more than just statements, and the question is whether it's wrong to give information.

Thanks For Your Page,


How is life treating you?="pretty well, thank you! ;-)"
Findout="Quite by accident"

       Dear Elizabeth,

       I do not disagree that Fonda is secure in the belief that she was trying to end a war which she saw as unjust. However, to go to a country which we are fighting and to pose next to enemy soldiers and to sit in anti-aircraft batteries being used to kill American serviceman is impolitic and ill-advised -- at best! To be opposed to the war was one thing; to express support and give aid to the enemy is quite another: Fonda, in her trip to North Vietnam, crossed that line. She is still paying for the -- at best -- indiscretion and "carelessness" of that visit, and her reputation most likely will never be free from the stain of it. If Fonda is unconvinced about being used by the North Vietnamese as a propaganda vehicle -- so used she obviously was, to anyone with eyes that can see and ears that hear -- than she is rather more an ingenue than I thought in a time rife with ingenues.

       I was only five years old at the time of Fonda's trip to North Vietnam and view those turbulent times mostly through second-hand sources; but it seems to me that history will judge Jane Fonda harshly for her trip to North Vietnam. Let history judge.

       I hope this e-mail finds you and your husband well in Buffalo.

       Very Truly Yours,


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