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H. Bruce Franklin, Historian & Fierce Critic of Vietnam War, Dies at 90

HeadlineMay 22, 2024

The cultural historian and author H. Bruce Franklin has died at the age of 90. Franklin was a former Air Force navigator and intelligence officer who became radicalized by the U.S. war in Vietnam. In 1972, he became the first tenured professor to be fired by Stanford University after the school accused him of inciting students to take over a campus computer center, which had ties to the U.S. military. He later taught at Rutgers University in Newark. He was the author of 20 books on topics ranging from the Vietnam War to Herman Melville. He appeared on Democracy Now! in 2000, where he spoke about Vietnam.

H. Bruce Franklin: “American fantasies made it possible for us to participate in that war, to carry out the most systematic destruction of a nation that any nation has ever done in history, and part of the time thinking that we were there for good reasons, to defend peace and democracy and so on. That was all based on fantasies.”

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