“There is no way to conceptualize truth.” — Dainin Katagiri

Published 4:27 pm Saturday, October 13, 2012

“There is no way to conceptualize truth.” — Dainin Katagiri


In “You Much Crazy,” a book I’ve published, there’s a chapter entitled “ Let’s Look at the Viet Cong Side:”


— I sat there, one of twelve soldiers taking an International Relations course offered at Schofield Barracks. I think I was the only draftee in the class. The others looked suspicious. I assumed they were army “lifers,” mostly intelligence people. They sat further back and seldom spoke and rarely smiled. I assumed they had to be there. They made me nervous. We met weekly for five or six weeks.

LBJ was building up troop strength following the Gulf of Tonkin incident when apparently the North Vietnamese fired on one of our Navel vessels in spite of Johnson’s ’64 campaign pledge:  “I will not send my boys 8,ooo miles to fight another nation’s war.”

The instructor eventually got around to shifting the setting. “What do you think would happen” he asked, “if Detroit were divided into two parts, with one half under Communist influence? Do you suppose,” he asked, “that it could get to a point where America would have to put a wall to keep people from defecting to the Communist side?”  He seemed to be implying that they, the Communists, would make their “side” better.

The thought had never crossed my mind. He said the Communists would do “whatever it takes” to make sure their side was more desirable, desirable in such a way that Americans would try to “escape” to the other side.

If you’ve read the book you’ll find it difficult to put down. I’ve been picking it up and putting it down for weeks. I’ll be ordering more and hoping for discussions.