Shaping San Francisco Donations
or make a
one time donation

Anti-Vietnam war

Primary Source

Polbhem1$1969-demo-against-vietnam-war.jpg

1969 demonstration against Vietnam War on Market Street, just west of New Montgomery.

Photo: H.K. Yuen

BLOW THE MAN DOWN

A press release from the sailors of the USS Coral Sea

The crew of the attack aircraft carrier USS Coral Sea have decided to help stop the war by stopping their ship. While Nixon tries to cover up the constant bombing of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, the men at bomber bases in Thailand and on aircraft carriers in the Tonkin Gulf cannot be misled.

After having been out of action for over a year, the Navy wants the ship to leave for Yankee Station near Southeast Asia on Nov. 12. The crew wants to keep the ship from deploying. On Sept. 13 they wrote a petition to Congress stating that a majority of the sailors do not believe in the Vietnam war and asking that their ship not return to Southeast Asia. Before the petitions could be sent to congress they were ripped off by the lifers and are now being held by the ship's executive officer. He said the petition was legal, but ignored attempts by the crew to get it back. So the crew ignored the executive officer and started a new petition. Over 300 men signed the first one and were pissed off when it was ripped off.

When the ship sailed out the Golden Gate on Monday for a two week trial run, there were thousands of leaflets with the text of the petition and places for signatures.

The Captain and the executive officer walked in on eight guys who were busy converting official "I Love The Coral Sea" buttons to "SOS" (Stop This Ship) buttons. This really freaked the pigs out. The executive said that although the petitions were legal, since it was addressed to Congress, he would "make it hard" on them if they kept it up. The crew is now demanding that he retract the threat. If he doesn't they'll file charges against him that will bring the Secretary of the Navy into the matter.

Last Sunday in Golden Gate Park, more than 60 crewmen had a picnic and saw the SF Mime Troupe's show, the Dragon Lady's Revenge, about the politics of the smack trade in Asia and the U.S. Jane Fonda and Don Sutherland from the FTA show were present and promised to do what they could for the men on the Coral Sea.

The Coral Sea, on its last cruise spent 10 months attacking convoys throughout Indochina. During the Laos invasion, each carrier in the area launched over 100 fighter-bombers a day. As Nixon is forced to reduce American casualties, the Navy and Air Force drop more and more bombs. Against countries which have a weak air force, carriers are secure bases for planes armed with 500 pound bombs, cluster bombs, and rockets, all designed to kill people with a minimal loss of American life.

During its last tour in Vietnamese waters, six men were lost overboard and never recovered. Several planes and their pilots were lost, but not a single one during combat. The USS Coral Sea had been out of action for over a year. In August it was taken out on sea trials again. These were short cruises to train the crew and play war games off the West Coast. During one test run designed to shape up recruits, about 74% of the crew worked 19 hours a day. Some men were forced to go without sleep for 36 hours.

In their petition the sailors said: "To the Congress of the U.S. from the Brothers on the Coral Sea: In our opinion there is a silent majority aboard ship which does not believe in the present conflict in Vietnam. It is also the opinion of many that there is nothing we can do about putting an end to the Vietnam conflict. That because we are in the military we no longer have a right to voice our individual opinions concerning the Vietnam War. This is where we feel that the majority of the Coral Sea has been fooled by military propaganda. As Americans we all have the moral obligation to voice our opinions. We the people must guide the government, and not allow the government to guide us! In our opinion this action is even more justified for the military man because he is the one who is taking personal involvement in the war."

"The Coral Sea is scheduled for Vietnam in November. This does not have to be a fact. The ship can be prevented from taking an active part in the conflict if we the majority voice our opinion that we do not believe in the Vietnam War. If you feel that the Coral Sea should not go to Vietnam voice your opinion."

(signed) by the men of the Coral Sea

from Good Times/Vol. IV No. 29/OCT. 1, 1971

Physicians-for-Peace-IMG010.jpg

1969 demonstration against Vietnam War on Market Street, just west of New Montgomery.

Photo: H.K. Yuen

Napalm-kills-people-not-com.jpg

1969 demonstration against Vietnam War on Market Street, just west of New Montgomery.

Photo: H.K. Yuen

Pink-coat-and-Children-are-.jpg

1969 demonstration against Vietnam War on Market Street, just west of New Montgomery.

Photo: H.K. Yuen

Get-US-out-of-Vietnam-and-b.jpg

1969 demonstration against Vietnam War on Market Street, just west of New Montgomery.

Photo: H.K. Yuen

Trench-coat-and-business-pr.jpg

1969 demonstration against Vietnam War on Market Street, just west of New Montgomery.

Photo: H.K. Yuen

Withdraw-US-troops-now-Mark.jpg

1969 demonstration against Vietnam War on Market Street, just west of New Montgomery.

Photo: H.K. Yuen



Foundsf-anti-war-icon.gif Continue Anti-War Tour

Prev. Document Next Document