Question 5

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Question 5

Post  Leanne Ottaviano on Mon May 09, 2011 7:13 pm

5. Is Mary Anne Bell a hero, a traitor, or something else-fully support your answer.

In my opinion Mary Anne is a traitor, not only to Fossie, but also to her country, America. Throughout Rat Kiley's story, Mary Anne quickly adapts to life in Vietnam almost as though she has lived there for longer than she actually had. The way in which Mary Anne makes herself one with the Vietnamese proves she is trading her old life as an American for her newer life in Vietnam. Not only is Mary Anne becoming a traitor to America and her old life, she is also acting as a traitor to Fossie. Fossie purposely messaged Mary Anne and sent her money in order for her to fly to Vietnam to come visit and for the two of them to spend time together. Although both Fossie and Mary Anne were very much in love with each other, Mary Anne seemed to be more concerned and focused on "fitting in" with the Vietnamese and participating in their traditions and culture. While being well cultured is a good thing, Mary Anne took it to the extreme and ended up giving up her old life and everything she had and trading it for Vietnamese costums and traditions.

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Response to Leanne

Post  jackielaurente on Mon May 09, 2011 8:24 pm

I agree fully that Mary Anne was a traitor to herself, Fossie, and her true home: America. With Fossie missing home and having the idea that the area is unguarded, he decideds to invite his girlfriend at the time out to come comfort him and have a piece of home right there with him; but unfortunatly she is not a piece of home. As her stay prolongs, she helps with the work around the camp and soon assists in tending to causilities that venture into camp. Mary Anne becomes a free spirit during her stay in Vietnam and becomes less dependent on Fossie while there. Though she may have loved him and vice versa, her free spirit caused her to become one with the Vietnamese culture and with the jungle. Betraying her country and her fiance for a new land marks her as a traitor.

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Responce to Jacky

Post  cody young on Mon May 09, 2011 9:47 pm

I would have to dissagree with you about Mary Anne being a traitor. Just because she didnt act the way that Fossie and the others expected, doesnt mean she betrayed them. If you look at characters throughout the book you will realize that the Vietnam war changed their lives. Fossie was being nieve when he thought he could invite his girlfriend to a place like Vietnam in the middle of a war and expect her to stay the same sweet innocent girl she was back home. By allowing her to help in the duties of the camp, they were accelerating her transformation. After witnessing Vietnam first hand she began to gain more interest in the war, she grew expecially fond to the ambush. Fossie almost has a nervous breakdown when he cannot find Mary Anne one night. He believes that she was sleeping with another man, and begins to fear she has lost feelings for him. She later returns from a late night ambush with the green berets, and enters their tent. I find it ironic that in the end Fossie was more upset at finding out she was on a mission than if he would have found out she was sleeping with another man. It shows that his fear of loosing her old self is greater than her cheating on him. Athough the men that lived in the camp with her believe she was a traitor for changing, she was really an exellent soldier, possibly even better than most of the men. She dimonstrated a real interest for the land, and unlike the others she actually wanted to be involved in the war effort. she never betrayed her country, she helped it.

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Response to Cody

Post  Amanda Brandi on Tue May 10, 2011 1:21 am

Sorry Leanne and Jackie but I agree with Cody on this one. He's right in saying what he said about Mary Anne. Just because she acted against what was expected of her does not label her as a traitor; it just proves those who assumed her to be something else wrong. People change, whether we like it or not, and the fact that Mary Anne changed to adapt to a more Vietnamese lifestyle does not mean that she's a traitor. In psychology, we learned that people tend to reflect those around them and I think that was what happened here, Mary Anne was influenced by what she saw in Vietnam and unconsciously imitated it. Fossie expected Mary Anne to be this grand person he once knew from his memories, this is what contributed to most of his sadness, but he needed to open his eyes and realize that everyone changes whether it be for good or bad. Mary Anne does not deserve to be labeled as a traitor for not living the "American way".

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TRAITOR!

Post  WillMeisner on Tue May 10, 2011 10:43 am

I definitely believe that Mary Anne was a traitor. After all, she began to take on a role of the land of Vietnam- an enemy to America. She also left the camp without telling any of the soldiers where she was going. How could she be a friend to America if she had the soldiers looking for her for a week, before giving up? That doesn't even take into account who she was a traitor to her boyfriend. Her sent her up to him with his own money, and put his whole heart and soul into her. Eventually, though, she went on ambushes with the Greenies and didn't even tell him. She came weeks later secretly and went directly to a different barrack. How could this not have been an act showing she was a traitor? Did she even actually break up with him before this? She left him and the rest of the company that loved her for weeks on end, and then finally forever. There is no excuse for this. She was a traitor to her boyfriend, her company, and her country.

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