My father, Barry Nemcoff (1925-2008) lived a very interesting and eventful life. In this short documentary, he tells it in his own voice. From fleeing China as a boy in 1938, serving in the US Navy during World War II, his years as a US Information officer and his distinguished decades in broadcast news, Barry talks about his life, family, career and loves.
Also included are some great anecdotes about his time serving in Pakistan for the U.S. Government, essentially as a propaganda officer. These are just a couple of the stories from DACCA DAZE. It might have been the other side of the moon. In 1960, Dhaka (then known as ‘Dacca’), East Pakistan (now known as Bangladesh) was, for all practical purposes, almost that far removed from the consciousness of the American people. Geographically, it was certainly on the other side of the world globe from American cities like Chicago or Philadelphia, for example. In the late ’50s and early ’60s, any news emanating from that part of the world was considered pretty far out.
Amidst the political intrigue and social upheaval that was further complicated by the Cold War in the early sixties, Barry Nemcoff, a former news reporter from Philadelphia, arrived in Dacca, East Pakistan with his wife and infant children in tow on an assignment with the U. S. Information Agency. The purpose of the agency’s work: To tell America’s story, spread its technical and scientific know-how, and contribute to the development of a nation.
What follows are the recollections of one ordinary American citizen who spent two years on the subcontinent, literally plucked out of American society and thrust, almost overnight, into a strange culture whose language and way of life was as esoteric to him and his family as anything coming out of fiction.