From 1968 to 1969, Moment Senior Editor George Johnson served as an Army intelligence advisor in the CIA’s Phoenix Program in South Vietnam. Based on his memoir When One’s Duty and the Right Thing are not the Same, Johnson discusses his assignment to this once-secret intelligence program and the Army’s program for “pacification” of Vietnamese villages. He also discusses how his reservations about the war caused him, upon return from Vietnam and to civilian life, to call for an accounting for the war and to re-orient his life toward Judaism and Jewish social action. This program is in honor of National Vietnam War Veterans Day.
B.F. Pierce is a brilliantly developed, multifaceted character, perhaps best analyzed by M.A.S.H.’s Army psychiatrist, the Jewish Dr. Sydney Friedman (played by Alan Arbus). The doctor’s observation that “while anger turned inward becomes depression, anger turned sideways is Hawkeye Pierce.”