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April 1995, Week 5


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Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 28 Apr 1995 16:11:45 CDT
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----------------------------Original message----------------------------
To: Cal Pryluck, Film Scholar
Fm: Peter Rollins, Film Student
Sbj: Colonel Nguyen Ngoc Loan Photo
        First, David Culbert wrote an excellent article on the Eddie Adams
photograph some years ago.  I highly recommend it.
        I wrote an article which examines the photo.  Here is the bib data:
Rollins, Peter. "Television's Vietnam: The Impact of Visual Images."
        Journal of American Culture 4 (1981):114-5.
        I made a show on the Tet offensive, part of which focuses on the
Loan photograph.  Title of show is _Television's Vietnam: The Impact of
Media_ and it is available from SONY Video.  It can be purchased via
Blockbuster Video--on a "second screen" in the computer.
        Finally, the earliest research on the Loan photograph is an article
by George Bailey and Lawrence Lichty.  Entitled "Rough Justice on a Saigon
Street."  It is in the documents volume (vol 2) or Peter Braestrup, BIG
STORY.  (Many libraries have the Yale UP volume.  When book first printed
by Westview press, had 2 vols.)
I have met General Loan. Here is a short summary:
        The man who was shot had been part of a group going around Saigon
killing the families of Saigon policemen.  The man was in civilian clothing
and was carrying a weapon during a period in which Martial Law was in
        Eddie Adams took a photo while the bullet was still in the victim's
brain.  The pic was run twice on the front page of the NYTimes and then
at least two more times that week.  The pic became an icon of the war for
many and the logo of the Vietnam veterans against the war.
        The footage was taken by NBC camerafolk and run on the Huntley-
Brinkley Report during dinner.  In my film, I interview people whose lives
were changed by the tv version.
        The Carter Administration tried to force Loan out of the country
as a war criminal.  As it turns out, what he did was horrible--but legal
within the framework of martial law.  If you remember the play _Andre_,
even George Washington summarily executed people who walked around the
battle zone in civilian clothes.
        Eddie Adams and General Loan are now personal friends.
        Hope that this is a sufficient response to your query.  The
written and video mateials should be helpful.
        Best to you!
Peter Rollins
Peter C. Rollins, English, Okla St U, Stillwater, OK 74078
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