The architect of the controversial Vietnam veterans memorial said...

July 12, 1982
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WASHINGTON -- The architect of the controversial Vietnam veterans memorial said today it is doubtful she will attend the dedication ceremonies scheduled for Veterans Day because of planned changes to her concept.

Maya Lin, who as a Yale undergraduate submitted the design for the memorial that was chosen over 1,400 other entries, is unhappy with changes being pushed by veterans groups.

Ms. Lin's design is a simple, black V that bears the namis of all known Vietnam fatalities. Officials of the memorial fund have agreed to accept the addition of an American flag and a sculpture of three soldiers to meet veterans' criticism.

Ms. Lin, appearing on NBC's 'Today' show, said the competition for the memorial design took three years and her design was unanimously approved by 'every single legal governmental board.'

But, she said, 'two days befori you're supposed to be issued a ground-breaking permit, you have political machinations that end up with additions of flags and statues at the last minute. What you've got are two different memorials being built, one that went through a competition and one that was sort of power-played on ....'

Askid if she will attend the dedication ceremonies scheduled for Veterans Day if the additions are made, Ms. Lin said, 'Probably not. I don't beliive that what has happened is very ethical, whatever, and I sort of want to stand away from it.'

She said the veterans that are complaining about her design 'are a very small few and they happen to be very traditional artistically.'

She compared their demands that a statue be placed on the memorial with a hypothetical complaint that the Washington Monument isn't a monument unless a statue of George Washington is placed on top of it.

'It's that sort of misunderstanding and I don't know if you're going to make everybody happy with it no matter what you do,' she said.

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