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Jennifer Rosenberg

War Trophies: Vietnamese Skulls

By June 24, 2007

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During the Vietnam War, some U.S. soldiers collected the skulls of Vietnamese as war trophies. They often painted them or found utilitarian uses for them, for instance as ashtrays. Six of these skulls were confiscated by the Customs Department when U.S. soldiers tried to bring them back to the States with them. Since then, the skulls have remained for years at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington. Should the U.S. return these skulls to Vietnam? The New York Times has more about these Vietnamese skulls.


June 29, 2007 at 11:16 am
(1) Pat says:

Collecting skulls is disgusting.

June 29, 2007 at 12:41 pm
(2) Kathleen says:

I believe that all human life is to be respected and the deceased human body should never be desecrated in any way. Of course those who choose to donate their bodies to science have that right and I am grateful to them. These human skulls should very definitely be returned to Vietnam and given the proper rites that they deserve. I don’t know if it is possible to identify the remains through DNA since there were so many of them, but I have always felt that the loved ones of the deceased always feel better about knowing exactly what happened to their family members so that they can have some closure.

February 19, 2013 at 7:58 pm
(3) jason mcdonald says:

i think the way our troops were treated they should NOT be returned. i think an ashtray is a great idea . i would love to have one. Ask anyone who spent time as a POW how they were treated and what they think There were a lot of American lives lost over a country who didnt even have the balls to fight for thier own country

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