TUESDAY, JUNE 7, 2022
Napalm in South Vietnam: Fifty years ago this week, the person who wrote the new guest essay for the New York Times was nine years old. At the start of her essay, she describes her childhood experience up to that point in time:
PHAN THI (6/6/22): I grew up in the small village of Trang Bang in South Vietnam. My mother said I laughed a lot as a young girl. We led a simple life with an abundance of food, since my family had a farm and my mom ran the best restaurant in town. I remember loving school and playing with my cousins and the other children in our village, jumping rope, running and chasing one another joyfully.
All of that changed on June 8, 1972. I have only flashes of memories of that horrific day...
Her family was leading a simple life with an abundance of food. Then, at age 9, she became famous around the world as the unclothed child running down the road, her body aflame from the napalm.
Today, "Ms. Phan Thi is the founder of the Kim Foundation International, which provides aid to child victims of war." She has long been a Canadian citizen. She has led a remarkable adult life, which she describes in her essay.
A point of chronology follows:
In early 1972, when Phan Thi was living a simple life in that village, a group of lost souls here in this country were conducting the "dirty tricks" campaign against Candidate Muskie to which we briefly referred in yesterday's report.
They'd badly lost their way in the world. Their behavior shows the types of things people will sometimes do in pursuit of, or in service to, wealth or fame or power.
People will sometimes behave in remarkable ways in pursuit of wealth and power. For today, we're going to leave that basic point right there.