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April 2020
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Letters to the Editor

This Week's Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor:

I wonder how many people know that March 28 is the National Vietnam Veterans Day? Or, do anything about it? I believe the day was set aside because of guilt? You know the story. On return from the horrors of combat, soldiers who served their country honorably were treated dishonorably. Since I was a professional soldier, I expected respect for my service - not having my ego stroked. At the least I thought I would have the feeling that the public, the press, the politicians and even the arm of the service to which I belonged would welcome me back. It’s hard to believe but on return to Fort Benning I was basically told to keep my mouth shut and forget my Vietnam experience. 

Think about that.

When a bullet goes by, or when it hits you, you can’t forget - will never forget. Someone out there is trying to kill you.

My return from Vietnam in 1968 wasn’t so bad (I served as  US Army Ranger) but my second return in 1971 was not so good. Today, I can handle it. But so many have personal sadness or even the inability to justify their Vietnam - some suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and receive treatment. Still, others have it but won’t admit to it or don’t think they have it. I contend we all have it to some degree, so what follows I hope will help.

So why Vietnam? Number one: as a nation we signed the Southeast Asian Treaty. Simply, the treaty stated that an attack against your country is the same as an attack against the USA. There is no doubt that Ho Chi Minh was communist and had aspirations to restore the Khmer Empire consisting of Vietnam (totally), Laos and Cambodia. (Communist N. Vietnam purged non-communists, killing one million and attaches into the south). Other signers to the SE Treaty were S. Korea, Thailand, New Zealand and Australia. Which, by the way, all fought in Vietnam. Folks should realize that by the treaty we pledged our honor. 

Number two: the so-called “domino theory.” What this means is we felt it was the thing to do to stem communist takeover of Asia. Geographically, Russia bordered North Korea on the northeast of N. Korea and at the end of WWII Russia had occupation of N. Korea, building the world’s second largest standing army. On the N. Korean NW border was communist China and Mao had killed three million non-believers in communism. So, in the middle to late 50s attempted take over of S. Vietnam began.

We entered the war in 1965. Soon, other nations entered the war. By 73 the USA turned over the defense of S. Vietnam to the Republic of S. Vietnam but promised continued air and logistical support. This promise (or honor) wasn’t enough to counter the N. Vietnamese who were supported by the Chinese and Russians. We veterans are still disappointed over the loss of S. Vietnam. We did our job but the nation let us down as well as the S. Vietnamese. What happened during the Vietnam war was unforgiveable - Woodstock with anti-Vietnam protests, drug use and overall lack of moral activity. But such actions as John Kerry creating 

“Vietnam Veterans Against the War” throwing his medals on the Capitol steps and then becoming Secretary of State.  that was the tip of the iceberg.

So, today we Vietnam vets are ensuring the favorable reception back home of the Middle East/ Gulf War veterans. What happened to us will not be allowed to happen to them. Welcome home you guys and gals. You have kept us safe and free. Thank you.

Robert A. Reitz


Dear Editor:

Trump is right. End our dependence on China to keep America safe.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become clearer than ever that ‘Made in America’ is not just a talking point –  it’s a priority for our national security. 

The fact that we rely on communist China – where the coronavirus originated –  for critical medical supplies and pharmaceuticals is unacceptable in a normal time. It is a travesty in a time of pandemic that could put American health and lives on the line. 

Over time, the U.S. has become more and more reliant on China’s supply chain to develop many important lifesaving drugs to battle certain cancers and the flu and medical supplies like gloves, gowns, and N95 masks that hospitals around Georgia and the nation are scrambling to find to fight COVID-19.  China at any time could shut down that supply chain and put American lives on the line. 

It’s time to bring the manufacturing of medical supplies and pharmaceuticals back home. 

In Congress, I will support President Trump and Congressional efforts to end our dependence on China. We will bring the manufacturing of vital medicines and medical supplies back home. We will start making things again. We will put America’s national security and the safety and health of Americans first. 


Kevin Tanner

Candidate for the 9th 

Congressional District


Dear Editor:

Jasper has a new mayor of whom I have great confidence in. Unfortunately, there is one council person who seems to lead all on the council after he has accomplished his original objective and that was to get rid of John Weaver. The council from what I have seen does not seem to want to be led. I sincerely hope our new mayor makes the difference. The County does not have anyone on board to lead Jasper or Pickens county. Now what do you do if you do not have qualified people? You tell me. Ok, the answer is you find someone can and willing to do the job...


 See the rest of this and other Letters to the Editor in this week's print or online editions.


Letters Welcomed

“Letters to the Editor” is an important public forum in the community and the Progress welcomes  these letters. Letters addressing issues will be accepted but not those expressing a personal grievance directed toward another individual. Letters OVER 450 WORDS in length will not be considered for publication. All letters MUST BE SIGNED with address and phone number given where the author can be reached to verify information. 

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