Famed – or infamous, depending on who you talk to – anti-Vietnam War activist and actress Jane Fonda again has expressed her sadness at the iconic photographs of her taken in Hanoi, protesting over American participation in the unpopular war.
The image of Ms Fonda sitting on an anti-aircraft gun, one that may have been used to shoot down US aircraft, and her anti-war activities, have ensured that she remains an unpopular figure with US military veterans. The Oscar-winning actress said the pain she feels from her decision to take that photo will haunt her until she dies.
“Whenever possible I try to sit down with vets and talk with them, because I understand and it makes me sad,” Ms Fonda said recently, speaking at an arts centre in Maryland. “It hurts me and it will, to my grave, that I made a huge, huge mistake that made a lot of people think I was against the soldiers."
During the event at which she spoke, veterans were present, holding signs saying, “Forgive? Maybe. Forget? Never”, according to a report from The Telegraph.
Ms Fonda was snapped on a 1972 trip to Hanoi. She has previously written about her regret at having posed for the photograph.
“I hardly even thought about where I was sitting,” she wrote on her website. “The cameras flashed. I got up, and as I started to walk back to the car with the translator, the implication of what had just happened hit me."
She said: "I pleaded with him, 'You have to be sure those photographs are not published. Please, you can't let them be published'. I was assured it would be taken care of. I didn't know what else to do.”
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