I received an American history education as sanitized as you could think of in high school: no mention of COINTELPRO or the Black Panther Party, a glossed-over mentioning of the concentration camps for Japanese-Americans, a severe downplaying of the impact that Socialists, Communists, and Anarchists had on the public from the late 1800s to the 1930s. One of the greatest untold stories of the history of the American Armed Forces is that of GI resistance and mutinies, dating back to the American "Revolution".
It is an unfortunate thing that the right was successful in claiming the narrative of the anti-war movement during Vietnam - the false claim that protesters spat on returning soldiers in San Francisco persists until this day. Most people don't know or have forgotten that it was the soldiers themselves who made up a great chunk of the anti-war movement during Vietnam. I recently saw the documentary Sir! No Sir! by David Zeiger, and it really shed light on what soldiers were going through during that time, and the different ways that they found to support each other and the anti-war movement during their service.
Iraq Veterans Against the War held an event this past weekend that was predictably ignored by the corporate media, but was fully covered by the Pacifica radio network. Just like in the Winter Soldier proceedings during the Vietnam war, veterans of our current illegal wars gave testimony about the atrocities that they witnessed as a result of our military actions. They spoke about how that racism was policy, and how torture was dictated from the top.
As citizens of this country, it is up to us to be educated about what our tax dollars are funding in our name, and in the 21st century of fast and available information, we have no excuse and no right to claim ignorance about what is going on in this world of ours. You can't just sit down and expect the corporate media to tell what's really good - you've got to seek it out.