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I've also written Ladies' Home Journal requesting that they respond to both Col. Jim Ray's letter (below) and Mike Benge's. I am anticipating their response to our letters so that I can also place it on this page. Of course the image of Jane Fonda with the enemy doesn't enhance her popularity, but the fact of the matter is the picture is real! This is why I fully expect a reply from Ladies' Home Journal which can offer an explanation regarding their selection of Jane Fonda for this honor, especially after reading the letters from such brave and patriotic men which have been submitted to their editors. If they choose not to respond then there will simply remain an empty space below.
Dear Ms. Blyth [editor of Ladies' Home Journal];
Why Jane Fonda? I PROTEST and COMPLAIN! And I had held your magazine, Ladies' Home Journal, in high regard heretofore. Why would you choose her?
Let me lead with my personal identification so you can verify and validate who I am, and confirm that my complaint is legitimate and accurate, and not some "anonymous source" fabricated by some journalist or other activist with an agenda or some hidden partisan political connection: James Edwin Ray, 464-66-xxxx, Colonel, U.S Air Force (Retired) Vietnam Veteran; F-105D Pilot; POW, May 1966 - Feb 1973 (6 yrs, 9 mos, 4 days!)(409) 696-[xxxx]; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.  Please contact to confirm.
While I make no presumption to speak for anyone but myself, I firmly believe, from my continuing interaction with retired and active duty servicemen and women, that approximately 85% toward 100% of all military veterans of the Vietnam conflict, and approximately the same percentage of those currently serving, who know the full story of Jane Fonda's visit to Hanoi, would generally concur with the sentiments expressed below. If anyone can give me credible evidence to the contrary, i.e., without political pressure upon the careers of current servicemen and women to refute this, I would gladly consider revising my estimate.
Why Jane Fonda? ... a woman who fulfilled the dictionary definition, as well as centuries of legal precedent, of TREASON, by giving aid and comfort to the enemy, during active hostilities, while I and several hundred other American and Allied POW's were being abused just a few blocks away in the "Hanoi Hilton," the infamous Hoa Lo Prison! She conducted press conferences condemning U.S. and Allied policy and actions; POWs were abused and forced to attend a press conference with her, and were punished badly for not following the communist script. She posed for pictures in communist uniform and hat on an anti-aircraft gun, and said personally that she'd like to get a Yankee mercenary air pirate an (American pilot) in her sights (to shoot him down or kill him!) Her actions prolonged the war and caused many additional casualties (on both sides) by giving aid, comfort, and encouragement to the enemy.
Why Jane Fonda? ... when we were honorably repatriated in 1973, and we duly reported the torture, the exploitation, their use of us as hostages at known targets, the further torture of POWs (one of whom died!) by visiting Cubans, and other violations of international law, that same Jane Fonda publicly called us "liars!" I challenged her to a public debate, or even a private visit, to see the rope burn scars (from the torture we called "the rope trick"), still visible on my arms after more than six years of captivity. Paul Harvey took note of my challenge, but few others in the media would; I was predictably ignored by the Fonda-Hayden followers.
But we POW's and our mistreatment in that gulag were not the only, nor the most significant reason I'm writing IN PROTEST. Many others earned as much or greater relevance than we. The dedicated service and sacrifices of millions of American citizens who loyally served, and put their lives on the line, in Southeast Asia, at the request of their Congress and their President, earned that same respect ... and in even greater measure, those who lost their lives, and those who lost their loved ones. All of them Ms. Fonda also BETRAYED!
But they are not the major issue here, either. That the war allegedly "... became "an unpopular one," according to a very vocal minority in the media, in Hollywood, and in academia, where many cowardly draft dodgers found refuge, is not the issue (though the radical left would try to make it so). Despite all the hired activists, the manipulated draft-eligibles, the media cheerleaders, and the provocative demonstrations, the silent majority overcame that theory when they elected, and re-elected (by a landslide) President Nixon, and the Representatives and Senators who prevailed in attempting to prosecute the war to a just and honorable end. Falsely alleged or unfairly exaggerated popularity polls are not the issue!
That the war was "undeclared" is no excuse either, though that seems to be the most frequent excuse mantra the media megaphone uses in Jane Fonda's defense, while muzzling and spiking any stories by those who would rightfully condemn her actions. Neither Constitutional language nor historical precedent requires that a war or hostilities be "officially declared" in order to define, or convict for, treason! No, that's not a major issue, either.
The Constitution of the United States of America and the rule of law, and citizens duties and responsibilities thereto, are the key issues at stake! The issue is that a de facto TRAITOR, for complex political reasons, was never held accountable, de jure, for her dictionary defined, legislatively defined, and historically precedented acts of TREASON. Civilizations ignore, or lightly excuse such actions at great peril to their continuance and survival.
Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon led our involvement in Vietnam. The US Congress, expressing the will of the American people, using the Constitutionally mandated due process of discussion, deliberation, debate, and legislation established the legitimacy of our involvement, and the draft, and funding to support it. No; "right or wrong (to be in Vietnam)," "popular or unpopular," "freedom of speech," "right to dissent," "principled opposition," etc., are not the issues. That it was the law of the land, enacted by due process, and that Ms. Fonda willfully disobeyed the law, the will of the Congress, and the policy and leadership of the Commander-in-Chief, and that her actions did great harm to American citizens duly engaging an enemy in time of war, while giving aid and comfort to that same enemy, is the issue: a prima facie case that she committed TREASON.
Why do you want to honor, or even recognize, Jane Fonda, a de facto TRAITOR? Why do media seem so uninterested in offering a fair opportunity to give honorable, loyal, brave, patriotic citizens a fair voice to make our case (as above) before the court of public opinion? Does her talent as an actress absolve her betrayal? Does her current husband's status as a media mogul override principle? (Wasn't Ms. and Mr. Fonda-Turner's CNN sufficiently exposed and discredited by the Time-CNN "Tailwind" story for such bias against Vietnam military veterans that they also betrayed legitimate standards of journalism?) Why would you want to give her/them cover or rehabilitation (much less Honor) when they have not sincerely apologized for their obvious mistakes? Is it money? Is it power? Is it celebrity? Is it ratings? Do any or all of these override principle, character, integrity, loyalty to our Constitution and the rule of law ... the things we should be teaching our young people?
I most respectfully urge you to retract Jane Fonda from your list of honorees. If you have made irrevocable commitments that now make it impossible to do so, I urge you to allow veterans and citizen soldiers, so many of whom share the views and principles expressed above, equal time in an equivalent forum. I ask that you allow us to inform the American people who and what we believe Jane Fonda really is! ... and why! For example, please print this letter, (you may omit my identity, if you wish ...I'm not seeking celebrity), in your next edition, and let your readers react to the reality of what she did, and what so many military servicemen and women think of her.
Even if you personally do not agree with the case I've made, I ask you to print this, out of respect for the sacrifices I and so many other veterans made in loyal, patriotic obedience to our Constitution, our Congress, and our Commander-in-Chief. Then let your readers decide for themselves, instead of doing their thinking for them by selective spiking. That's what communists and fascists do, and what we were fighting against, for you and for your (and others') freedom of the press!
Colonel Jim Ray (U.S. Air Force Retired).
This is a formal apology to Col. Jim Ray (POW/author of the above letter to Ladies' Home Journal) and Mike McGrath; President of NAM-POWs. During the several correspondants (via email) I've had with both of these brave men, I came to realize that they're also extremely patient. Col. Ray requested that I remove a letter which was previously on this page. It was re: the experiences of a Jerry Driscoll (River Rat) who was a Vietnam POW and also allegedly tortured at the very hands of Jane Fonda. She's guilty of many things; TREASON for one but after reading the letter forwarded to me by Col. Ray, whom he received from Mike McGrath, I realized that I was somebody elses pawn and was perpetuating a story that was false. I certainly admire Col. Ray and Mike McGrath and I immediately removed the erroneous letter which I should have checked and verified for authenticity before placing it on this website. Again I apologize. In this USMC radio operator's opinion, POWs went through the unimaginable! They returned home with such dignity while showing the world just what real strength, patriotism and such bravery is all about that they certainly don't deserve erroneous information floating around the Internet, nor anyplace else for that matter.
So that nobody else is taken in by this false letter re: Driscoll, it involves slivers of paper which were handed to Jane Fonda during a press conference where social security numbers were written on these slivers of paper which were to be taken Stateside. Again, this NEVER happened!
Mike McGrath also emailed me a list of "accurate" information re: POW Facts. If anybody is interested in reading this, feel free to email me at the below address and I'll be glad to send along this document to you.
FYI there is also erroneous information floating around newsgroups and other websites about Senator John McCain. It states that he left his fellow POWs and returned home early by using his influence as an Admiral's son. This also is false information and I can only encourage others who read stories about our POW/MIAs that they do the necessary research before posting to newsgroups or placing it on their websites. Thank you!
To whom it may concern:
I was a civilian economic development advisor in Viet Nam, and was captured by the North Vietnamese communists in South Viet Nam in 1968, and held for over 5 years. I spent 27 months in solitary confinement, one year in a cage in Cambodia, and one year in a "black box" in Hanoi.
My North Vietnamese captors deliberately poisoned and murdered a female missionary, a nurse in a leprosarium in Ban me Thuot, SouthVietnam, whom I buried in the jungle near the Cambodian border. At one time, I was weighing approximately 90 lbs. (My normal weight is 170 lbs.).
We were Jane Fonda's "war criminals." When Jane Fonda was in Hanoi, I was asked by the camp communist political officer if I would be willing to meet with Jane Fonda. I said yes, for I would like to tell her about the real treatment we POWs were receiving, which was far different from the treatment purported by the North Vietnamese, and parroted by Jane Fonda, as "humane and lenient." Because of this, I spent three days on a rocky floor on my knees with outstretched arms with a piece of steel rebar placed on my hands, and beaten with a bamboo cane every time my arms dipped.
I had the opportunity to meet with Jane Fonda for a couple of hours after I was released. I asked her if she would be willing to debate me on TV. She did not answer me, her husband, Tom Hayden, answered for her. She was mind controlled by her husband. This does not exemplify someone who should be honored as "100 Years of Great Women."
After I was released, I was asked what I thought of Jane Fonda and the anti-war movement. I said that I held Joan Baez's husband in very high regard, for he thought the war was wrong, burned his draft card and went to prison in protest. If the other anti-war protesters took this same route, it would have brought our judicial system to a halt and ended the war much earlier, and there wouldn't be as many on that somber black granite wall called the Vietnam Memorial. This is democracy. This is the American way. Jane Fonda, on the other hand, chose to be a traitor, and went to Hanoi, wore their uniform, propagandized for the communists, and urged American soldiers to desert. As we were being tortured, and some of the POWs murdered, she called us liars. After her heros-the North Vietnamese communists-took over South Vietnam, they systematically murdered 80,000 South Vietnamese political prisoners. May their souls rest on her head forever. Shame! Shame!
(History is a heavy sword in the hands of those who refuse to forget it. Think of this the next time you see Ms. Fonda-Turner at a Braves game)
Dear Ms. Blyth [editor of Ladies' Home Journal];
I have read your article about Jane Fonda found at Jane Fonda Most Important Person and you write, "Then, in one of her periodic personal transformations, she became active in protesting the Vietnam War." Does Ladies' Home Journal believe this active "position" she took to be admirable?
Does Ladies' Home Journal believe that of all the brave men and women who sacrificed so much for "our" country that Jane Fonda's role can conceivably compare and even be rewarded? There are so very many veterans waiting for an answer as to why Ladies' Home Journal would select this individual for such an honor. This is a copy of the email I sent you. The above letters written by Colonel Jim Ray (Retired) and foremost a POW, and the letter from Mike Benge, POW articulated theirs and the veterans' feelings far better than I could and these questions and letters "deserve" a reply. I am emailing you a copy of these letters to your email address at EMAIL and I'm hopeful that "we" will receive some sort of response that I can place here.
Roy E. Stanford
3rd Amtrac Battalion; 1st Marine Div.; "B" Co.
1967-1969 Marble Mountain Complex, Republic of South Vietnam
If you would like to email Ladies' Home Journal you can write to them at EMAIL. After speaking to so many of you about this I know that some if not a lot of you will write to them and state your feelings and questions.
CLICK HERE to read Ladies' Home Journal's email response sent to this website on August 27, 1999. So many other letters and emails were sent to their magazine.
CLICK HERE to read what Ladies' Home Journal writes about Jane "HANOI" Fonda and why she deserves to be selected as one of 100 Most Important Womem of The 20th Century.
Copyright © 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002 Roy E. Stanford.
United States Army
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