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AE on Telly News (NEW CONCEPTS)
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Mick Harper
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In: London
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Here's an example of the difficulties of 'body count'.

Vietnamese, in uniform, to camera: Two American companies were pursuing us but we outmanoeuvred and destroyed them. We paid a high price, I had ninety men, sixty or seventy were either killed or wounded.

Well, what was it? You were there, was it sixty or seventy? Killed or wounded? Out of the war wounded or purple heart wounded? And why no 'missing'? Seems odd in a prolonged battle of movement. But what of the Americans? Two companies represents about five hundred men so 'destroying' them would get banner headlines in the New York Post. My guess would be five killed, thirty wounded out of an original force of between one and two hundred. The Americans might even have chalked this down as a W.
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Hatty
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In: Berkshire
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In the penultimate episode of this excellent Vietnam documentary, the famous 'Napalm girl' photo came up and I was astonished at the controversy around it. It wasn't, for once, American planes but South Vietnamese planes dropping bombs on civilians.

The girl's nakedness was the controversial bit though I hadn't even noticed she was naked! Her pain and terror made an instant impact -- surely the photographer's point. It did get published of course, later winning the Pulitzer Prize, but last year Facebook briefly removed it for the same reason. Why are Americans so peculiarly prudish?
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Mick Harper
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In: London
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Was I the Sixth Man?

Last night's programme on Burgess (of Burgess and Maclean) struck a few home truths.
1. J D Bernal got an oblique mention. How did I know he was going to appear on the telly this week when I mentioned him here just last week?
2. The 'gentleman from Prague called Benes' referred to in Burgess's conversation with Winston Churchill was, though the programme didn't allude to the fact, the Prime Minister of Czechoslovakia at the time, about whom I was writing only this morning.
3. Goronwy-Rees was the bloke who helped Burgess with arrangements the day before the defection. I knew his daughter.
4. Burgess and Maclean left on the SS Falaise. I used to travel on the SS Falaise.

The authorities have been informed.
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