Battle myths on Anzac Day: The Terror of Napalm

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A veteran of the Korean War described his wartime experiences, including the trauma of seeing the first use of napalm.

Gordon Sutherland of Johnsonville attended the Anzac Day national service in Wellington this morning.

“I’ll never forget what an experience it was to see, sitting on the hill, and the worst experience I’ll ever have was seeing napalm used for the first time.”

“Absolutely… I was so shocked that I even felt sorry for the enemy. The enemy that was a human being.

“I’ve never forgotten it and I’ve never talked about that occasion in Korea before. This is actually the first time.”

Gordon said he had attended commemoration services his entire life.

“My connection goes back 80 years, from when I was a wee boy my father served in the first world war and I attended services from when I was 4-years-old. I was born on Armistice Day and I’m still here today.

“I served in Korea… I suppose you’d call it fighting.”

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He said when he returned to New Zealand he could not believe how green it was.

“It was wonderful to be home and since then I’ve experienced a wonderful life.

“It’s just so lovely to be here… I love our country.”


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