War stories recounted

Bluff-born journalist Peter Arnett was the VIP guest speaker at a recent function to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Caravelle Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). The Pulitzer prize-winning reporter, who filed more than 3,000 stories on the Vietnam War for the Associated Press between 1962 and 1975, witnessed many significant historical events during this time — often from the rooftop of the iconic hotel. Arnett recalls watching the 1963 coup d’etat against southern leader Ngo Dinh Diem. “During a lull in the shooting I made my way to the Caravelle,” he said. “The rumours and the speculation of the months past were coming true before my eyes and I watched it all, with a glass of Johnny Walker Red Label in one hand, a cigarette in the other.” The day that Saigon (Ho Chi Minh) fell, Arnett was also at the Caravelle. At the 50th Anniversary he recounted the morning, quoting from his autobiography. “I shaved and showered in cold water and selected a grey proletarian shirt of the new city masters. I headed upstairs to the dining room, doubtful that breakfast would be served. But I was wrong. The waiters were on duty as usual.”


Tags: Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon)  Peter Arnett  Reuters  

Prodigious Singer Aleisha Malcolm in the Limelight

Prodigious Singer Aleisha Malcolm in the Limelight

Christchurch teenager Aleisha Malcolm is far from your average eighteen-year-old. The bright and accomplished singer, songwriter, entrepreneur and activist has impressed global audiences as her seemingly unstoppable career trajectory continues to…