Journey Planet 76 – The American War in Vietnam

Journey Planet 76 – The American War in Vietnam
7th December 2023. Ho Chi Minh City.

On December 7, 1968 PFC Joe W. Haldeman wrote “Notes from the Jolly Green Jungle” about his experiences in Vietnam, which first appeared in the fanzine ODD #20. 

55 years later this, plus his “Tales from the Jolly Green Jungle,” which appeared in ODD #19, are reprinted in the new issue of Journey Planet which looks at the American War in Vietnam. 

Journey Planet co-editor James Bacon writes from the War Remembrance Museum in Ho Chi Minh City:

“It is important to pay respects to those who suffered so much, and so I am here in the War Remnants Museum, where so much time and effort is spent educating and sharing the horror of the American War in Vietnam. Whole sections are dedicated to war crimes and the effects of the use of Agent Orange by the U.S. These consequences are shown through exhibits and through paintings by children. It is a hard and challenging series of documentations. There is a requiem and photo exhibition for journalists and soldiers alike; there is acknowledgment of those who fought. As much as there is about Lt Calley’s role in the Mỹ Lai massacre, and Senator Bob Kerrey, who was a Navy SEAL and part of the atrocities at Thanh Phong Village, the museum also notes the Veterans Against the War, soldiers who marched for peace, and those like Lawerence Manley Colburn and Hugh Clowers Thompson Jr. who fought in their own way to stop atrocities by comrades.” 

“This issue of Journey Planet looks at the American War in Vietnam and its connections to fans and professionals as we consider the impact of the War. As I sit here among the artifacts of war, and contemplate it, remembering it, aware of the unbelievable losses, the sadness, the horror and the injuries and death, I am grateful to the fans who have allowed us to share their stories and memories of the War. These are personal and important stories. It is right that we confront and consider our history, and it is right that we confront and consider the experiences of the Vietnamese–those who lived through the War and those who left and those who extensively wrote about it. We started this issue five years ago, and now, at 104 pages, with dozens of people helping bring it together, we hope that you find the issue of interest.

“We look thoughtfully at Vietnamese voices, and how they shared their experience through writing and film. We discuss the works of novelists Doan Phuong Nguyen, Aliette de Boddard, Lê Minh Khuê, Dương Thu Hương, and Hoa Pham; filmmaker Eirene Tran Donohue; graphic novel writer/artists GB Tran, Clement Baloup, Marcellino Truong, Thi Bui, and Minh Lê as we carefully consider how the War is portrayed and shared.”

Along with these Vietnamese voices, they share the writings and art of Joe Haldeman and David Thayer from their time of service in Vietnam, along with excerpts of Dick Eney’s fanzine, “Curse you Red Baron!” which he published from Saigon while he was stationed there for over five years. Bacon says, “We are honored to share first-hand accounts of these vivid experiences with readers.”

Snoopy after Schultz by Col Art

Fans have taken the time to share very personal matters, writing about their family members, some of whom were lost in the War, as they contemplate carefully the personal impacts. Sara Felix, Errick Nunally, Guy Lillian, III, and co-editor Christopher J. Garcia have shared articles about their family members.  

The impact of the War on comics is considered as they look at works by Vietnamese comic book creators Nguyễn Thành Phong, Khánh Dương, Huu Do Chi, Nguyễn Khánh Dương, Can Tiểu Hy, and Võ Hùng Kiệt (ViVi). They reprint State Representative Julian Bond’s anti-war comic, Vietnam, which was first published in 1967, look at Snoopy and Charles Shultz during the time of the War, chat to comic writer Garth Ennis, write about Joe Kubert’s connection to Vietnam, and look at how DC Comics and Marvel reacted through their publications to the War at the time, while also making recommendations. 

This issue contains a wide selection of art by Keith Burns, Sara Felix, Nguyễn Thanh Phong, Khánh Dương, Guillermo Ortego, Teddy Harvia, Joe Haldeman, Col Art, Arnie Fenner, Juan Gimenez, Võ Hùng Kiệt, TG Lewis, Huy Oánh, Marcia Rosler, Bill Rotsler, and Rick Swan.

With extensive articles by Brenda Noiseux among many contributors, this issue saw Allison Hartman Adams join Christopher J. Garcia and James Bacon as co-editor in this broad look at the American War in Vietnam.

Download the issue here: Journey Planet issue 76.

Table of Contents

  • Editors’ Note
  • The Jolly Green Jungle Introduction by Chris Garcia
  • Tales From the Jolly Green Jungle by Joe Haldeman
  • How Vietnam Touched My Life by Sara Felix
  • A Vietnam Imagined by Errick Nunnally
  • ”The Smile of Victory”: The Women of the American War in Vietnam by Allison Hartman Adams
  • The Horrors of War and Other Morbid Cliches by David Thayer
  • No Capacity for More by Brenda Noiseux
  • Snoopy: A Metaphor, Mascot, or Comfort Puppy by James Bacon
  • Apocalypse: The Eyes of Doom by Jim O’Brien
  • Truyện Tranh: Piracy, Crowdfunding, and the Growth of Vietnamese Comics by Allison Hartman Adams
  • Hunter S. Thompson: Too Much Tension and Too Little News, by James Bacon
  • Lê Minh Khuê’s Postwar Fiction by Allison Hartman Adams
  • The Forever War and Coming Home by Chuck Serface
  • Little Saigon: How the Vietnam War transformed San Jose Cuisine by Chris Garcia
  • The Kubert Connection by James Bacon
  • To a Brighter Future by Brenda Noiseux
  • Star Wars: Is It an Allegory for the Vietnam War? by James Bacon
  • (Re)discovered loss by Brend Noiseux
  • What the War Left Behind by David Ferguson
  • A Not So Private Little War: Star Trek’s Muddled Vietnam War Protest Episode by Ryan Britt
  • ‘I love the smell of burning flesh in the morning. It tastes like cooked breakfast’: Teddy Bears’ Picnic and Britain’s Vietnam War by Jim O’Brien
  • It’s Not a War Story: Filmmaking and rebirth in modern Vietnam by Allison Hartman Adams
  • Advertising for Vietnam by James Bacon
  • Martha Rosler – Bringing the War Home by Chris Garcia
  • The American War in Vietnam in Marvel Comics During the Vietnam War up to 1975 by James Bacon
  • Dương Thu Hương’s A Novel Without A Name by Allison Hartman Adams
  • Box me up and ship me home: Tim O’Brien’s Vietnam by Jim O’Brien
  • DC Comics and the American War in Vietnam by James Bacon
  • The Vietnam Veterans Memorial by Chris Garcia
  • Comics of the Vietnamese Diaspora by Allison Hartman Adams
  • Curse You Red Baron! by Dick Eney
  • Vietnam Comics Recommendations by James Bacon
  • Introduction to Vietnam by Julian Bond and T.G. Lewis by James Bacon
  • Vietnam by Julian Bond and T.G. Lewis (illustrator)
  • War Fiction, A True Story by David Thayer
  • Garth Ennis talks about Vietnam with James Bacon
  • Gordon, Haldeman, Band and the Robot Jox by Peppard Saltine
  • My Cousin Jimmy by Guy H. Lillian III
  • In the End by Allison Hartman Adams
  • A Brief Note from Chris
  • Enditorial by James Bacon
  • JP 72: Operation Motorman Letters of Comment

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