Rory Kennedy’s Oscar-nominated Vietnam Documentary Draws Fire from Journalists and her own On-Camera “Experts,” including CIA Veteran
By Frank Snepp, January 18, 2015
Rory Kennedy, daughter of the late Senator Robert Kennedy, has scored an Oscar nomination for her PBS-backed documentary “Last Days in Vietnam” about the evacuation of the Saigon embassy in April 1975.
But two of her key interviewees, backed by journalists who were in Saigon during the evacuation, are challenging the film’s objectivity and its portrayal of Henry Kissinger, who negotiated the 1973 ceasefire and helped shape Vietnam policy for the Nixon and Ford administrations.
The former Secretary of State was interviewed extensively for the documentary but was allowed to make allegations and self-serving remarks without any balancing perspective from Kennedy or anyone else.
Jim Laurie, former NBC correspondent in Vietnam and one of Kennedy’s interview subjects, has delivered a cautionary letter to her, co-signed by other American reporters once based in Vietnam. It expresses concern about her handling of key events, including the breakdown of Kissinger’s ceasefire.
I am another of her featured “experts” who has faulted her treatment of the eyewitness testimony she got from me and others.