Saturday, July 4, 2015

Kent State: Still seeking the truth

Kent State: Still seeking the truth

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This is discouraging for those of who still want the truth about more recent events like the financial crisis or the torture regime under George W. Bush and Dick Cheney. On the 40th anniversary, we're still seeking the truth about the massacre of four people during the anti-war protests at Ohio's Kent State University.

A 40-year-old audio recording of the moments just before Ohio National Guardsmen opened fire on antiwar protesters at Kent State University will finally be professionally analyzed to try to determine if -- as some claim -- an order to shoot is audible.

The recording was made on May 4, 1970, by Terry Strubbe, a KSU communications student who set the microphone of his reel-to-reel tape recorder on his dorm room windowsill, turned on the machine, and went outside to watch the unfolding protest.

The chilling 30-minute tape is the only known audio that captured sounds before the shootings, the 13-second fusillade and its chaotic aftermath. Four students were killed and nine wounded in the incident, which spawned numerous inquiries and crystallized American sentiment about the unpopular Vietnam War.

I applaud the efforts to hold a Kent State Truth Tribunal next week. Contrary to those who think it's counter-productive to look backwards (yes, I'm talking about you, Barack Obama), I'm glad that there are citizens and journalists who will go to the wall for the truth, even 40 years after the fact. The song "Ohio" by Crosby Stills Nash & Young has always been one of my favorites; in it, Neil Young sings, "How can you run when you know." But first have have to know...the truth.

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Will Bunch
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