Historical Highlight for August 6, 2023

Historical Highlight for August 6, 2023 – “Man on the Moon” – here’s a short historical fact from the history of the Vietnam war and the POW experience shared in the new ‘Captured by Love’ book:

“During the summer of 1969, when Americans were celebrating the landing of Apollo 11 on the moon, the POWs were suffering some of our worst treatment ever. As the torture swept through every camp, two of the five men in my cell were thrown into solitary for several months. But finally, when the torture and punishment stopped that fall, the fellows returned to entertain us with many amazing stories of resisting our enemy—often through cleverness and psychological games.

“Intentionally, the V never gave us good news from home. But in February of 1970, Hanoi Hannah inadvertently gave us a lift during a morning “Bitch Box” broadcast in which she made an offhand comment. To paraphrase, “If Neil Armstrong were to go to the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone), the [bomb] craters would look very familiar to him!”

“That statement was a subtle clue with an out-of-this-world insight! We knew that Armstrong, a former Navy fighter pilot, was an astronaut, and this could only mean that he had walked on the moon! The USA had beaten the Russians. This unintended disclosure of a history-making event electrified us.

“Later that morning, the five of us from Cat House cell 4 (Son Tay camp) were walking across the compound to the wash house when Capt. Ken Fisher, our SRO, happened to look up and—lo and behold—there was a crescent moon. With a big smile, he pointed to it and said, “Gentlemen, our flag is on that moon.” We all came to attention, looked up to face the moon, and saluted. The guards were baffled. We were bursting with pride and celebrating! The news of this accomplishment was a huge boost to POW morale at a time when we really needed a lift.

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