‘Maybe I Was Set Up’: Jane Fonda Rambles When Chris Wallace Presses Her To Explain ‘Hanoi Jane’

Actress and activist Jane Fonda couldn’t seem to settle on one definite answer during her recent interview with former “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace, waffling when he pressed her about her now infamous 1972 visit to Vietnam.

Fonda, 85, joined the veteran broadcaster for his weekly interview-based show “Who’s Talking to Chris Wallace?” — and while the two discussed a broad range of topics, Wallace asked several questions about the trip that earned the actress the moniker “Hanoi Jane.”

“Your most famous protest was 50 years ago when you went to North Vietnam at the height of the war there. And you were photographed sitting on an anti-aircraft gun,” Wallace began, adding, “Critics, and there were millions of them, called you a Hanoi Jane and said you were a traitor. And the question I have is 50 years later, how do you look back on that particular chapter?”

“It was a terrible mistake. I mean, the reality is, there were 24,000 American troops on the ground in South Vietnam. That’s all the ground troops were going home. The war was being fought by the air during during the Nixon administration,” Fonda replied, saying that she had spent years talking to American soldiers who felt that the war had been “wrong” and that Americans were not wanted there.

“They realized that the war was wrong, that we weren’t wanted there. And that we probably couldn’t win it, not because they weren’t a(sic) fabulous soldiers. But because of the nature of Vietnam,” she said.

“So when you say it was a terrible mistake …” Wallace prompted again.

“It was a mistake to go, I never wanted to go to any military installations. It was the last day of my two week time there. And I was like a limp noodle, what I had experienced and what I had seen, I just I wasn’t able to resist, they said we’re gonna take you out here today,” Fonda continued.

Fonda went on to say that the photos showing her smiling were taken after someone had sung a song that made her laugh, not because she was mocking the situation.

“And you know, maybe I was set up, but I was an adult, it’s I’m gonna take responsibility for it,” she said. “If I was Vietnamese, I probably would have tried to do the same thing, you know, but I should not have gone.”

The “80 for Brady” actress pointed out the fact that she had not been the first or only one to visit North Vietnam — she had just been the only movie star, and she had made the choice to go because she hoped it would draw more attention.

“And that’s what it did,” she said. “So I feel that, well if what I did was good, except that I shouldn’t have gone out to a military place.”

“When you got that nickname Hanoi Jane, how did you feel at the time?” Wallace pressed again.

Fonda admitted that she had not liked hearing that name, but that she stood by her decision to protest the war.

“When you know why you did something, and you’re willing to admit the mistakes that you made, but stand up for the things that you did that that mattered? You’re gonna come through it, okay,” she explained to Wallace. “And I refused to have them scare me away from being actively against the Vietnam War. And, you know, I think they thought, oh, she’s this white privilege rich, famous daughter of all of that stuff. You know, we can we can scare her, and boy did they try? And the more they tried, the more I —”

“The more you what?” Wallace asked.

“I dug in my heels,” she said.

Another segment of the lengthy interview took an awkward turn when Fonda, who lamented being inept at small talk at cocktail parties, asked whether Wallace was married and might accompany her to parties so that she’d have someone interesting to talk to.

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