Dear America Edithed by Bernard Edelman Essay

Dear America Edithed by Bernard Edelman Essay

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Edited by Bernard Edelman, “Dear America” is a collection of letters written by soldiers during the Vietnam War. Their letters are written to love ones back home such as parents, siblings, and spouses but they are a great depiction of the Vietnam War. The soldiers would write these letters to help keep hope alive and to keep sane. Throughout the book the letters are categorize into those who are barely arriving into the war to those who have been there a long time. The stress and anxiety grows more and more as the letters continue and the soldiers begin to contemplate their situation. I’ve learned a lot of factual things about the Vietnam War throughout my life such as how it began and what the outcome was but reading this book was the first time I learned about what the soldiers were experiencing and the cruel reality of this war. A few letters in “Dear America” I found very interesting and are a good depiction of the Vietnam War.
The first of these letters was written by Robert C. Ransom from New York City. He was shipped to Vietnam in March 1968 and his letter to his parents showed me how oblivious some soldiers were when first coming to Vietnam. In his letter Ransom shows excitement from being shipped to war and how happy he is to get to fight. He begins to feel compassion for the enemy by stating, “For the most part nobody is particularly wild with patriotic feeling.” Here he explains that the Vietnamese aren’t bad people, their just defending what they believe in. Ransom also writes to his parents about stories other soldiers have told him and tries to glorify them. At the end of his letter he boast about how strong the United States military power. His letter stood out to me because of how naïve he was to what was going ...


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... Personally, I think that America was wrong for entering this war as I read through “Dear America” and “Give me Liberty” all the wars America fought were for freedom except the Vietnam War. I agree with all the military decisions I read in “Give me Liberty” from the American Revolution to WWII. In my opinion America was only trying to prove their military power by entering the Vietnam War. This is the reason why I sympathize with many of the soldiers in this book. “Dear America” shows the transition soldiers had from first arriving to Vietnam to how they felt after being there for months. The soldiers that wrote letters at the beginning think a lot differently by the end of the book. I’ve realize while reading this book that all the movies and TV shows we watch glorify war for a profit but reading the letters from all these soldiers has shown me a different side.



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