All posts filed under: Ancestry

MIA Erasure, My Reflection

To much fanfare, the exhibit Artists Respond: American Art and the Vietnam War, 1965-1975 opened in Minnesota at the Minneapolis Institute of Art this month and will run until January 5th, 2020. It’s billed as a way to look at “the innovative ways artists talked back, often in the streets and other public venues. The exhibition presents nearly 100 works by 58 of the period’s most visionary, provocative artists.” For Southeast Asians of Vietnamese, Hmong, Laotian, and Cambodian descent, and active military veterans, you can even see the exhibit for free. It’s been a long time since I’ve been given free admission to an art exhibit to witness the complete erasure of my community’s perspective and reactions to the Vietnam War, the Secret War, and the Killing Fields. For Minnesotans, who arguably have one of the most deeply tangled relationships with Southeast Asia than almost any other US state, this ought to be a stirring and profound exhibit: one filled with so many heartbreaking memories and reflections on themes and issues addressed over four decades ago, …

Lost photos: Hmong nurses of the Secret War

Air America Association, Inc’s Facebook page uploaded photos of Hmong nurses from America’s Secret War days, which surfaced in a newly published photo book that’s free to the public. It’s an incredible look inside one of the most historically invisible wars of our time and especially of the women whose honorable mentions went unheard of. Air America and the Air America Association, Inc. Air America’s tenure in Asia began when Civil Air Transport (CAT) crossed the river into Shanghai in 1946. It ended on a rooftop in downtown Saigon in 1975. First in, last out. That was Air America in China, Korea and in Southeast Asia. The Air America Association is composed of former employees of Air America, their families and their affiliates. Its purpose is to capture that experience and present it in historical context.