Jane Fonda Says Controversial Vietnam Photo Was “A Huge Mistake” As Vets Protest Event
Jane Fonda once again addressed her controversial decision to pose for photos in North Vietnam in 1972 after protestors assembled in front of her event in Frederick, Md., over the weekend.
Vets Protest Jane Fonda Event
Fonda, 77, spoke at the Weinberg Center for the Arts in Frederick on Jan. 16, where attendees were met with a small group of protestors, some of whom served in Vietnam, angry over Fonda’s “treasonous” actions.
“She’s a traitor. She was treasonous during the Vietnam War in her conduct and detrimental to the entire war and cause,” one protestor said.
‘Hanoi Jane’ Controversy
In 1972, Fonda visited Vietnam and posed for photos, earning her heaps of criticism and the nickname ‘Hanoi Jane.’ While in Vietnam, Fonda also met American POWs and gave interviews, all in an effort to end the Vietnam War. Fonda has previously addressed the controversy surrounding her trip, saying that she was proud of her intentions to end the Vietnam War, but now regrets the Hanoi Jane photo.
“The image of Jane Fonda, Barbarella, Henry Fonda’s daughter…sitting on an enemy aircraft gun was a betrayal,” Fonda admitted in 2005.
During a 2012 interview for Oprah Winfrey’s Oprah’s Master Class, Fonda also expressed her regret for the photo and spoke about her efforts to connect with Vietnam veterans and apologize for the photo.
Fonda Understands Protestors’ anger
After years of criticism, Fonda appeared unaffected by the recent protestors at the Frederick event, telling the audience that she felt the photo had been a “huge mistake” and was completely understanding of the protestors.
“I’m a lightning rod. This famous person goes and does something that looks like I’m against the troops – which wasn’t true – but it looked that way, and I’m a convenient target. So I understand,” Fonda told the crowd on Friday.
In fact, Fonda said she embraced opportunities to speak with veterans who are angry with her actions.
“It hurts me, and it will to my grave that I made a huge, huge mistake that made a lot of people think I was against the soldiers. Whenever possible I try to sit down with vets and talk with them, because I understand, and it makes me sad,” Fonda added.