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Aschaffenburg, Germany—As a U.S. Army conscript I was lucky enough to sit out the Viet Nam War as a medical corpsman here. I was all of 20 years-old when my Military Airlift Command jet touched down on a snowy Frankfurt runway in December of 1968. I lived and worked there until my military obligation was completed in June of 1970.
I wasted no time in getting to know the people customs, and language. I avoided spending any time around my fellow soldiers as I went on a non-stop exploration of a country that was still making repairs from allied bombing a couple of decades earlier.
Many of the older people were unhappy with Americans and viewed us as an occupation army. Others were happy to have us protecting them from the Bolshevik bastards that raped the women and children when Germany fell.
Many Americans want to blame the German people for the acts of their politicians that led to World War Two. Adolph Hitler mesmerized that population just as that Marxist Barack Obama has our own. The people had no clue what Hitler’s idea of Hope and Change would be until it was too late.
Germans are a proud, hard working and law-abiding people. West Germany was no welfare state. The people were just really nice. It’s too bad we don’t have that kind of culture in the United States.
The young women of Germany I met were, refined, elegant and especially pretty. Dating American soldiers was never popular especially with the girl’s parents. Having a working knowledge of the customs and language saved the day. I found myself accepted. At the time I felt I was way too young to hook up with a German bride and fled from that idea.
I truly had the time of my life there but was not smart enough to know it. Getting drafted turned out to be one of the better things that ever happened to this Chicago kid raised in poverty.
In hindsight I should have stayed in Germany and gotten my education there. We all make or choices and we don’t get second chances. My Austrian heritage would have quickly gotten me dual citizenship.
Today I look for any reason to travel to this great place. Investigations, film work and news gathering have rarely facilitated my travel here. I’m ready to go again at the slightest excuse.