Hung Nguyen BBC: Ok, Jim could I ask you a question about your reflection about the Vietnam War now and what you thought about that war 40 years ago?
Jim: Let’s say, 40 years ago .. I feel like it came out like we really wanted it to. When I was in Vietnam, I met a lot friends, a lot of people, and enjoyed and I still have people there that I know. I feel like the plidders, the war, the Americans, the Vietnamese and others around there did a very good job but I think the politicians kinda messed up the whole thing. At the end, we didn’t give them what we promise we gonna give them to help (…) the war so I was really upset about that personally my self because I have so many people that I knew and enjoyed. That’s kind of reflection that I have from that.
Hung Nguyen BBC: Do you still remember any major battle that you participatory?
Jim: Well, not really major battle. That was kind of — everyday. I worked with rode development. can’t required a bit I also worked with … division can’t require a bit. Highway thirteenth. It was a everyday thing for us. Road man is every day and rockets coming every night. It was just on and on.
Hung Nguyen BBC: How did that experience in Vietnam shape your life in general?
Jim: Well it gave me appreciation for being in the United States. I feel safe and be held security and may be feel sad for other people that don’t have the security that I have. Hopefully it helps the people there.
BBC: Have you been back since?
Yes, I’ve been back many times since. I went to Sai Gon, basically on the district 1. I always go to the playground, the parks and I sat and talked to the students, the college students, they liked to speak English so that they could learn another language. I think that helped them to be able to speak English. …
Are you happy with the way…?
I’m very happy. The first time I was glad that I could go back and visited and see some places that I’ve been before and the improvements that I see. And the roads are much better. It was gorgeous now. Building up. Looked It’s pretty bad and now it’s building up. Looks like a much better future for the young people to come along. And education programmes, it looked like a Much better than it was.
What about you, captain? How did you grow up here in the States and how the Vietnam War, if anything, affected the choices that you made?
Captain: Yes, for me, after 1979, my mother’s family coming to the states. My cousin, a girl and a boy and then my mom’s cousin, my uncle. For me as a young child to ask questions and know why, why are they coming here? Why couldn’t my mother take me. First time I went to Vietnam, and at that time, we landed at the Tan Son Nhat, from TSN to District 1 to Cho Ben Thanh, then I took a cycle to Cho Ca Moi that’s where my mom’s sister number 2, she hides. From there we went down to My Tho, where my Ong Ngoai lives there. To see the poverty at that time in 1985. To what I was used to five years old, six years old or so. It was a big shock to me and also put perspective onto me. How I should much appreciated of the life I have in the States and how I should have more compassion because now I have knowledge. First time face to face with the people that are suffering at that time in Vietnam.
And then when you went back here, and then you went to school, what makes you go to into the army?
For me, my family has a long service in the military. My mom signed, her father. From the city of Tri Dinh, and at that time it was a part of the French Indochina. So my grandfather and his best friend, who married to his wife’s sister, served in the Indochina army, and forced against the Viet Minh. Also, my mom’s cousin later on served in the Servan Military and Police outside Vietnam. And my father, he served in the World War II, in the Creen War, and also do in the Vietnam War. So having that influences on me, as well as the strict discipline of my father who is also a New York City Police Officer. It stoned in me great patriotism and to understand the quality of life that we have in this country. This country accepted about 80 family members of my mom to come from Vietnam. It was my choice to give back and to let this country know that I thank and appreciate them because if this country has not, my family members and my mom and I couldn’t have the same opportunities. If we didn’t come to the USA.
So it was your own choice to go into the Army and then went into Iraq.
There was a strictly volunteer, Since I volunteered and I had good grades, the Army did award me a scholarship for college. So I received them, and at first they have three scholarships, and it notifies my list emit to the reserve and then it became a contract to conduct.
I requested from the army I went to the Law School. After Law School, I graduated and had the opportunity to
It was not transc