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Indian Feather
12-08-2006, 01:25 PM
Hi

My teacher was talking about American people refusing to fight in the Vietnam war, and he suddenly mentioned Elvis. According to him, Elvis refused to join the army i Vietnam. Of course i had to set him straight, so i told him that Elvis served in the army over in Germany from 58 to 60.

He was a little puzzled, and said that there was something about Elvis and the Vietnam war.

Can anyone tell med what Elvis' meant about the war, and if he ever went public with his opinion on this subject?

Regards

ruggishboo
12-08-2006, 02:56 PM
Elvis didn't comment in public what his opinion on Vietnam was. I do recall he was asked about it in the MSG press conference saying he "preferred to keep his opinions on that to himself". Obviously, he was patriotic, and maybe he didn't quite understand why so much of the country at that particular time was against the government, after everything the country had given him.

T_J
12-10-2006, 03:34 AM
What a bizarre thing for your teacher to come up with. It sounds like he's taking the Muhammad Ali situation and applying it to Elvis. Lord knows where people get these ideas about Elvis.

And no, as already said, Elvis didn't make his feelings publicly known about Vietnam.

JDD
12-10-2006, 04:10 AM
What a bizarre thing for your teacher to come up with. It sounds like he's taking the Muhammad Ali situation and applying it to Elvis. Lord knows where people get these ideas about Elvis.

And no, as already said, Elvis didn't make his feelings publicly known about Vietnam.




Exactly Elvis was very smart. He made almost no Political feelings public knowledge . Extremly smart move on Elvis part IMO.

Joe Car
12-10-2006, 12:02 PM
Hi

My teacher was talking about American people refusing to fight in the Vietnam war, and he suddenly mentioned Elvis. According to him, Elvis refused to join the army i Vietnam. Of course i had to set him straight, so i told him that Elvis served in the army over in Germany from 58 to 60.

He was a little puzzled, and said that there was something about Elvis and the Vietnam war.

Can anyone tell med what Elvis' meant about the war, and if he ever went public with his opinion on this subject?

Regards

In 1970, on his way to meet Nixon, during his commercial flight, ( if you can believe that, stunning but true ), he met a soldier on leave from Vietnam and struck up a conversation. While they were talking he found out that the man was coming home for Christmas to visit his family, then had to go back after the holidays. Elvis, ( God bless him ) went and asked either Jerry Schilling or Sonny West for all the cash they were holding for their trip, since Elvis never carried cash. It amounted to about $500, he then gave it to the soldier. That's the Vietnam story, hard to believe, but stunningly true. That whole trip to the Whitehouse was incredible as Elvis did things alone, like purchase his own plane ticket, fly commercially, stopping at a doughnut shop in Washington, ( though this story is still in question ) gave a couple of stewardesses a ride home in his limo, ate lunch in the White house cafeteria, and all the time, nobody but Schilling and West knew where he was. This is the only Vietnam story that I'm aware of.

As far as his opinions on war, during the Madison Square Garden press conference in 1972, he was asked his opinion of war protesters and would he today refuse to be drafted, he basically said that he would prefer to keep his views to himself, stating that he was "just an entertainer". Then he was asked, "should other entertainers keep their views to themselves. " Elvis said "no."

0349054
12-10-2006, 12:45 PM
According to a few of the guys Elvis supported the troops. Due to his patriotic views, Elvis saw it as a "them against us" situation.

Joe Car
12-10-2006, 01:35 PM
According to a few of the guys Elvis supported the troops. Due to his patriotic views, Elvis saw it as a "them against us" situation.

Given how patriotic EP was, I can't picture Elvis not supporting the troops. Considering what they lay on the line for us everyday, they deserve our support.

0349054
12-10-2006, 02:26 PM
I fully understand Elvis's support of the troops. However I don't support the various wars the US has perpetuated.

vulcandude
12-10-2006, 04:16 PM
In 1970, on his way to meet Nixon, during his commercial flight, ( if you can believe that, stunning but true ), he met a soldier on leave from Vietnam and struck up a conversation. While they were talking he found out that the man was coming home for Christmas to visit his family, then had to go back after the holidays. Elvis, ( God bless him ) went and asked either Jerry Schilling or Sonny West for all the cash they were holding for their trip, since Elvis never carried cash. It amounted to about $500, he then gave it to the soldier. That's the Vietnam story, hard to believe, but stunningly true. That whole trip to the Whitehouse was incredible as Elvis did things alone, like purchase his own plane ticket, fly commercially, stopping at a doughnut shop in Washington, ( though this story is still in question ) gave a couple of stewardesses a ride home in his limo, ate lunch in the White house cafeteria, and all the time, nobody but Schilling and West knew where he was. This is the only Vietnam story that I'm aware of.
I remember this story as well. I'm very surprised your teacher doesn't know of it.....anyway, not only was it smart for Elvis to keep his views to himself on the subject, because, he was after all, an entertainer, but I wouldn't be surprised if somewhere along the way, Colonel Parker told him not to express any particular views on the subject as it could damage his reputation. So many entertainers of the time, (and I vividly remember Jane Fonda and John Lennon specifically), expressing their views on the subject. I think if Elvis had expressed any opinion on Vietnam, I'm sure it would have made front page headlines, and then, I'm also sure, his opinions (or quotes) would have gotten twisted the wrong way.....

Raised on Rock
12-11-2006, 01:56 AM
In 1968, he altered the lyrics of a Chuck Berry song adding in a line to it: "FIghtin In VIetnam..." then it goes: "...Too Much Monkey Bussines, Too Much Monkey Bussines..." and you know the rest of the song.

Hard to say really if this could be considered, some will consider it a mere joke about things going on at the time, some will argue that because ELvis didnt write lyrics to the songs he sang, he recorded (apart form soundtracks) the ones that meant something to him, and when he changed something in the lyrics it really meant something.

In my opinion ELvis was a smart guy, smart enough to realice the value of peace and to live in harmony, we was a love man, not a war man, yet he was smart enough to realice that in the task of peace sometimes war is needed, and thats one of the reasons why he felt so conected with Karate and the Zen/Buddhist philosophy behind it, and thats why he refused the short sighted ignorant acuarius age point of view of the hippy flower power generation; he knew that for peace, for love, for creating an equal society you need a clear mind, toughtfull and compasive actions, but yes sometimes violent and warfull ones, but never a bunch of confused ideas full of cannabis smell. He knew communism was not for the good of human kind (at least not in the way in which developed in some countries), so he fight communism, as he fighted the drug culture. But yes, Im sure he was also smart enough to realize when a war stopped to be fair or when the smartest thing was stop fighting it, and even more, when in certain war there were already to much monkey bussines involved in, is just that he simply knew that to call soldiers pigs or anything like that was for the benefit of nowbody. Anyway this is just my opinion, I never meet Elvis Presley, ELvis Presley keept most of his ideas for himself, and that its something in which I dont agree with him.

EP6873
12-11-2006, 02:48 AM
That whole trip to the Whitehouse was incredible as Elvis did things alone, like purchase his own plane ticket, fly commercially, stopping at a doughnut shop in Washington

Are you saying that Elvis flew on the plane by himself?

4THEHEART
12-11-2006, 05:34 AM
I never thought Elvis was that simple minded to think it as them against us..though he loved his country,he wasn't an unaware person about what was going on in world and politics as many people think he was..but with talking against joining the army those days, he would have hurt feelings of many US soldiers who only thought that they're doing their duty of honour as they were ordered to do so..we can't blame the victims..it's goverment's responsibility to give the right decisions,not soldier's..and I'm sure he wasn't happy seeing in the news how many people died from both sides..behind the image,Elvis was an intelligent,sensitive and aware person who read and listened a lot...

Larry Dickman
12-11-2006, 06:22 AM
Are you saying that Elvis flew on the plane by himself?


Yes...apparently stormed out of Graceland and boarded a commercial flight from Memphis to DC.....from memory(???) he then boarded a plane to LA to pick up Jerry Schilling.

ruggishboo
12-11-2006, 06:31 AM
I was always impressed Elvis made that trip alone for the most part, cutoff from his entourage, and actually went to the White House and met the President.

Raised on Rock
12-11-2006, 07:12 AM
I never thought Elvis was that simple minded to think it as them against us..though he loved his country,he wasn't an unaware person about what was going on in world and politics as many people think he was..but with talking against joining the army those days, he would have hurt feelings of many US soldiers who only thought that they're doing their duty of honour as they were ordered to do so..we can't blame the victims..it's goverment's responsibility to give the right decisions,not soldier's..and I'm sure he wasn't happy seeing in the news how many people died from both sides..behind the image,Elvis was an intelligent,sensitive and aware person who read and listened a lot...

Totally agree with you, its never as simple as white and black, and Elvis was smart enought not to carry his views in such dualistic simplistic views, yet, when your opinion goes beyond the short views of two poles in contradiction, both are gonna think your on the side against them because you dont think like them. Back in '69 and '70 most of the hippies thought ELvis was with the stablishment, yet most of the stablishment thought he was another long haired hippie, and that happened at the same time he was the hero of most of the counter culture leaders, and beloved by some important people of the so called stablishment, So what the hell Elvis was?

Joe Car
12-11-2006, 12:48 PM
Totally agree with you, its never as simple as white and black, and Elvis was smart enought not to carry his views in such dualistic simplistic views, yet, when your opinion goes beyond the short views of two poles in contradiction, both are gonna think your on the side against them because you dont think like them. Back in '69 and '70 most of the hippies thought ELvis was with the stablishment, yet most of the stablishment thought he was another long haired hippie, and that happened at the same time he was the hero of most of the counter culture leaders, and beloved by some important people of the so called stablishment, So what the hell Elvis was?

Elvis was himself, he never followed movements, never let people dictate what he should wear, how he should think, who to believe in. Think about it, in the late 60's and seventies, when it became popular to bash law enforcement, especially the police, calling them "the pigs", Elvis openly showed his respect for the police, it took a 9/11 tragedy years later for them to get their proper respect from most people. He never let popular thinking influence his beliefs, if he would have, he might not have survived the fifties given what the establishment thought of him. Also commenting on war, especially one as controversial as Vietnam, was and is a no win situation. Look what it has done to people in the past, the Dixie Chicks being a good example.

Indian Feather
12-12-2006, 03:15 PM
Thanks for response everybody!

I guess we proved my teacher wrong. But who knows what some gossip magasine in Norway might have written about the king behind his back in the seventies?

The story about Elvis taking a commercial flight is really something! Imagine to be seated beside Elvis in a flight. And the fact that he wanted to help the solider out is just a prove of what a great person Elvis was.

He beleve he did right in not expressing his opinion on this matter back then. Althoug i think the colonel gave him strict rules on how to handel such a question.

Thanks again folks!

Regards

Lisarose
01-14-2007, 05:45 AM
Elvis was proud to be in the service & wore his Army uniform most everywhere he went, when asked why he was wearing it, he simply said he was proud of it. He also jumpstarted the fundraising to complete the Pearl Harbor Memorial. When Elvis did a fundraiser he paid all the costs himself so t hat 100% of the monies would go to the charity. I believe there is a plaque giving him credit for his part in the completion of the Pearl Harbor Memorial.

Trev1
01-14-2007, 01:26 PM
He did change the lyrics of the song "Too much monkey business" to mention Vietnam, so that would indicate that although he may have supported the US troops, was not 100% convinced of the US reasons for being there :hmm:

MauriceColgan
01-14-2007, 02:11 PM
TV coverage of the carpet bombing of Viet-Nam must have sickened Elvis.

He may have silently applauded the troops just doing their "duty" but had a different oppinion of the politicians sanctioning the slaughter.

We humans are far more complex than most people imagine:blink:

0349054
01-14-2007, 03:38 PM
He did change the lyrics of the song "Too much monkey business" to mention Vietnam, so that would indicate that although he may have supported the US troops, was not 100% convinced of the US reasons for being there :hmm:

Elvis was a patriot. He was from the South. I believe he did support the troops.

Whether he supported the rationale for them being in Vietnam is another question.

Regardless, I certainly don't support it or Iraq, and if my views are contrary to Elvis's I really coulden't care less.

elpfan
01-15-2007, 06:12 AM
. . . yet he was smart enough to realice that in the task of peace sometimes war is needed,

War NEVER achieves peace.


. . . and thats why he refused the short sighted ignorant acuarius age point of view of the hippy flower power generation; he knew that for peace, for love, for creating an equal society you need a clear mind, toughtfull and compasive actions, but yes sometimes violent and warfull ones,

Wow.


ELvis Presley keept most of his ideas for himself, and that its something in which I dont agree with him.

I agree . . . he should have spoken out. He should have used his power as an entertainer to influence for the good.

However, I find it odd that E would so rally in favor of the establishment . . . perhaps he'd have found a broader audience by playing to the "ignorant hippy flower power generation" rather than acting older than he was, out of touch with the real trends of the times. The "establishment" was really never his friend. And it would have been interesting if he had been less a bible-thumper and more an outspoken critic of the war and the corrupt American government, rather than pandering to Nixon and collecting badges.

I've been a fan for decades, but truly, E did not stay up with the times, and I think he had some very misguided ideas about his career, his personal life, and America. He was a reader, a searcher, but misguided . . . imo.

srj1967
01-15-2007, 10:58 AM
War NEVER achieves peace.




Er, there was a little scuffle a few years back called World War II. You may have heard of it. Unfortunately, in that case, all-out war was needed to bring peace back to the world. :'(
But these days, there is no reason for it. War is pointless.

Raised on Rock
01-17-2007, 07:12 AM
War NEVER achieves peace.



Wow.



I agree . . . he should have spoken out. He should have used his power as an entertainer to influence for the good.

However, I find it odd that E would so rally in favor of the establishment . . . perhaps he'd have found a broader audience by playing to the "ignorant hippy flower power generation" rather than acting older than he was, out of touch with the real trends of the times. The "establishment" was really never his friend. And it would have been interesting if he had been less a bible-thumper and more an outspoken critic of the war and the corrupt American government, rather than pandering to Nixon and collecting badges.

I've been a fan for decades, but truly, E did not stay up with the times, and I think he had some very misguided ideas about his career, his personal life, and America. He was a reader, a searcher, but misguided . . . imo.

I do agree with you when you say: "War never achieves peace" if you mean war as a violent action based on ingnorance and aflicted emotions, ingnorance vs inorance brings more ignorance, more aflicted emotions, more disgrace to this world. But when you mean by war: a violent (that's just sudden and energetic) action based on wisdom it can actually bring peace, thats the idea of a warrion in martial arts, "someone who shall never use his powers unless for protect from injustice". On Tibetan-Buddhism (and those are serious peaceful people, and didn't was the Dalai Lama who have said many times stuff like: War never brings peace) there are thousands of depictions of the Wrathfull aspects of Budhha (who did anything but speak about peace)... so either the Dalai Lama is crazy (it could be) or he simply understands that saying: War never brings peace, must not be understanded in a dogmatic simplistic way.

On the other hand I do apologise for the "Ignorant hippies" comment, I have deep respect for the 60's counter culture and some of their insights, but yet I must say I do consider a big fraction of it made a big mistake when they bet for the soft brainded "new age" ideology and the: "smoke a joint will enlighten you"... Wow!

So, ELvis might not have been Bertrand Russell, but he wasn´t that misguided
when he realized two things, 1) drug culture was not bringing any solution but making bigger the problem and no, no drug would enlight society, even big boy Ginsberg realiced that years latter; 2) Big Brother Mao Tse Tung and friends were not there for the good of all human kind.

What I do belive its odd is why Elvis went with Mr Nixon when it was obvious that Mr (Too Much Monkey Business) Nixon wasn´t sending more troops to VIetnam for the same altruistic reasons Elvis had and how he felt about the army.

elpfan
01-17-2007, 08:21 AM
Er, there was a little scuffle a few years back called World War II. You may have heard of it. Unfortunately, in that case, all-out war was needed to bring peace back to the world.

You must be kidding.
The entire world hates America.

srj1967
01-17-2007, 10:53 AM
You must be kidding.
The entire world hates America.


What has my response about World War II got to do with the world hating America? Of course the whole world hates America right now (actually, it's more like we hate George Dubya and what he's doing to your great nation's reputation and screwing my country and others in the process).
But back in WWII, the world was behind the US, and rightly so ...

Raised on Rock
01-17-2007, 07:47 PM
You must be kidding.
The entire world hates America.

WOw, then what the hell you're doing in this forum?

Im not from the US, and yes, the Goverment of United States of America have made serious big mistakes and afected a lot of people in an unfair way several times, but hey, just in the same way any other powerful country has, and just in the same way any goverment has made mistakes with his own people all the time. On the other hand, not all has been mistakes and there´s some stuff in history which is to thank for... unless you where with Adolfs gang.

Plus you got to understand this: one thing is the Goverment and another the people, people is the same everywhere, Ive got serious reasons to be against George Bush Jr, or the Chinesse goverment, or even my own goverment dam it, but thats one thing, people is another, Ive got nothing against American people or chinesse people or whoever; in fact even to say "The Goverment" its phoney, cause thats making everyone pay because of the faults of a few, I'm sure there is great people on the U.S. goverment, and its a shame that they are all stuck because of a bunch of corrupt monkeys with power.

Things are more complicated than just black and white, and to say everybody hates america its such a primitive remark, very ignorant form of violence. But i guess that in a totally diferent way Elvis was, you prefer just go "with the trends of times", regarldless questioning mass confusion, confusion both on the establishment or in the unstablished, which by the way those are two very old fashioned and already unuseful ways to study social phenomena... well maybe you are not so much with the trends of times, but thats all right, neither do I.

Raised on Rock
01-17-2007, 07:57 PM
Don?t ban elpfan, lets his american *** speak...

T_J
01-18-2007, 02:59 AM
You must be kidding.
The entire world hates America.

Bit of a simplistic overstatement wouldn't you say? I'm from the UK and I don't hate America at all. Yes, at present there is a lot of anti-American sentiment in the World, but let's not get carried away.

As for war never bringing peace, it's a nice sentiment, but I'd dearly love to know what happens when there is no alternative but to fight. WWII has already been flagged up - and your odd response was the quote above. The truth is that much of the world was hugely grateful to America after WWII as there's no way the Allies would have been victorious without their help. In that case, conflict was indeed essential to stop Hitler's murderous ambitions. Chamberlain tried the conciliatory approach and got nowhere. The truth is that if more pre-emptive action had been taken, far fewer lives would have been lost. War is never desirable, but sometimes unavoidable.