This, according to the amazing historian of Hanoi esoterica David Lempert, is one of four memorials to John McCain to be found in Hanoi. It commemorates the gunners who defended the former Yen Phu Electric Plant from air attack, and notes that on the date in question 10 American A-4s were shot down over Hanoi, with one of the pilots landing in Lake Truc Bach and being captured alive. It doesn’t name the pilot in question, but given that the date is October 26, 1967, we know it to be John McCain.
I still find it remarkable that people can get involved in wars in which they spend their time trying to kill other people for some reason which they deem merits these other people’s deaths, and can in turn watch those people try to kill them; that they can then, with the passage of time, realize that these people they were trying to kill and who were trying to kill them were just acting in defense of their own country, family, clan, religion, ideology, or what have you, and that there’s no reason to harbor any ill will towards each other; and that, despite all this, they go on to get themselves involved in more wars in which they’re once again convinced that other people are so evil that they need to be killed, without seemingly reflecting on the fact that last time they got involved in this, it turned out those other people weren’t so bad after all and it was all a huge misunderstanding.
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