Monday, December 17, 2007

ghosts of war

During our recent trip to Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) in Vietnam, our tour guide took us to two historical places of interest. The first was the War Remnants Museum, an exhibit too painful and disturbing for words. The second was the Reunification Palace (below, left) which housed the President of non-Communist South Vietnam during the war.

Hidden beneath the Palace was the 'War Room', an underground operations / telecommunications center. As I walked through its winding corridors and peeked at rows of deserted rooms filled with rusty teletypewriters (below), radio equipment, topographical maps, desks, etc., I felt claustrophobic. At that point, I realized how poorly I would fare in times of war. Ten minutes in that place and I wanted to run!

After the tour, one of our companions (a clairvoyant of a woman) blurted, 'I saw a ghost down there... sleeping on... remember the small couch?' After a short chilly silence, everyone screamed!

Soldiers practically lived in those rooms for years. In fear. And I believe, in hope. Many of them died before the war ended in 1975. Today, they continue to haunt the halls of the Reunification Palace. In the same way, memories of war will forever haunt those who survived.

The BWWT 2 Military Be@rbrick (top) is by Frank Kozik (right), a famous graphic/toy designer from San Francisco, who created concert posters for bands such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, The Beastie Boys and Red Hot Chili Peppers. His most popular toys are the Smorkin' Labbits, cigarette-puffing bunnies that have become vinyl toy classics.

Pic of soldiers from the U.S. Army Museum of Hawaii Website / Reunification Palace pic from / Teletypewriter room pic by me / Kozik pic from


McDreamer said...

yikes... creepy... said...

Yup, it was kind of a creepy tour. But we proceeded north to Hanoi, a prettier city with a less chaotic street scene. :-)

Unknown said...

I have a 100% one of these are they worth anything?

Unknown said...

I have a 100% one of these are they worth anything thanks said...

best way to check is by looking at similar bearbricks on eBay. :-)