Fifth Estate # 56, June 19-July 1, 1968

Dear Peter,

I am more than happy to state my opinion of the Army and the war in Viet Nam. I’ve been in the service nearly a year now and I have had several unpleasant experiences with the foolish and incompetent leaders of this organization.

I have been very fortunate and I have not had to kill to save my life, but many of my friends here have not been so fortunate. Three weeks ago we had 10 men killed and approximately 40 others who were wounded in an ambush just North of this city.

These men didn’t want to kill or be killed but they were forced to because of the policy our nation’s leaders wish to maintain. I don’t know of any G.I. who wants to give up his life for such a senseless war. The American government has been leading the people to believe that the men here want this war to continue. It is definitely not true; no one wants war in this country or any other.

The only thing we are accomplishing by staying in this country is to support the south Vietnamese economy thru prostitution and other services to the G.I.s stationed here. It’s nice to help their economy but not at the cost of my life and others.

Now for my feelings about the Army itself. This organization cannot stand criticism. If some one in the service challenges its policies, they are court-martialed, thrown into the stockade or just plain harassed to unbelievable limits. The leaders of these companies encourage fights and so-called blanket parties for those who do cooperate with them.

In this organization you are not allowed to say what you want or you are court-martialed. If you are physically unfit, it makes no difference, you are still required to carry an equal load. You are never left alone, you are always being bothered by someone with orders for you.

I hope this letter is printed because I have a message for Big Brother. I don’t give a fuck what kind of discharge you give me, I just want out.

PFC Henry Marvin
88th Transportation Co.
APO San Francisco 96318

P.S. You may use my name if you wish.

To the Editors:

I read the Estate as often as I can, because I find it very enjoyable reading matter. I extremely like the column on “Sounds” by Wilson Lindsey.

The only thing I find wrong with it, is he should try and review some soul records too besides blues and folk-rock Try reviewing the Supremes latest album. “Reflections”, I’d like to hear his comments.

Other than that I find the paper great and the art work by Ed Bania is fantastic.

Sheila Rinker
Allen Park