Everett Alvarez

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Everett Alvarez Air Force Pilot and POW

Antiwar Relatives.

Lt Cmd. Alvarez was a POW for over 8-years after the North Vietnamese shot his A-4 Skyhawk down in the Gulf of Tonkin in August 1964. POW Alvarez was unhappy with his sister Delia’s antiwar activities.[1] Sister Delia joined the antiwar movement in direct contact with Jane Fonda, John Kerry and Mary Clarke of the pro-Hanoi collaborating Women Strike for Peace, WSP. On December 18, 1969, very likely at the urging of an antiwar activist exploiting POWs like Cora Weiss, the leader of the POW-exploiting Committee of Liaison with Families of Servicemen Detained in North Vietnam (COLIFAM), Delia, Tangee and Soledad Alvarez presented a petition to President Nixon urging an end of the war in exchange for release of POWS.[2] The communist declared, "The success of ... COLIFAM ... would be the first step toward the release of the pilots."[3] In Washington on July 22, 1971, Delia Alvarez stood on the stage at a John Kerry press conference where Kerry, following Communist Madame Binh’s plan, called for Nixon to accept the Vietnamese’s 7- point peace proposal.[4] Two newspapers published a photo of Kerry with two members of POW families, Sheila Cronin and Delia Alvarez.[5] In 1972, Jane Fonda persuaded Delia Alvarez to join her in a protest at the Republican Convention in Miami.[6] In September 1974, the communists were still enjoying the distress they caused now released POW Alvarez. In an article in Vietnam Courier Hanoi gleefully described his mother, Chole [Soledad], and sister Delia’s antiwar activities and Alvarez’s unfaithful, remarried wife, Tangee.[7]

Under torture Alvarez skillfully parodied a Vietnamese styled confession, “I protest the long, involved, costly, controversial war, a violation of the gallant, heroic, liberated, freedom loving, independent loving Vietnamese people."[8] The enemy didn’t get it, but the folks who heard it back home probably did. Alvarez received the Silver Star, two Legions of Merit, Distinguished Flying Cross, two Bronze Star Medals, and two Purple Hearts. He later served as Deputy Director of the Peace Corps and as Deputy Director of the Veterans Administration.

References

  1. Craig Howes, Voices of the Vietnam POWs, New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 155n164.
  2. See: Caption of a Howard Erker photo on 18-Dec-69, Everett Alvarez, OMCA Collection.
  3. Covert Cadre, 39N56 cites Liberation News Service press release, March 14, 1970. Gannon, A Biographical Dictionary of the Left, [1969-1973] Belmont (Mass.): Western Islands, Vol. III, 54 cites both Robert Horner of HISC and COLIFAM publications.
  4. The New York Times, “Anti-War Veteran Accused of Exploiting P.O.W. Issue,” July 23, 1971; Daily World, July 24, 1971.
  5. “Anti-war Veteran Accused of Exploiting P.O.W. Issue, in wintersoldier.com … Kerry7Points.
  6. San Francisco Chronicle, Aug. 19, 1972; Hubbell, POW, 224.
  7. “Comment,” Vietnam Courier, Monthly, Sept. 1974.
  8. “Comment,” Vietnam Courier, Monthly, Sept. 1974.

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