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Re-enactors of the Vietnam War Society wear uniforms and equipment of US riflemen of the Vietnam War
Re-enactors of the Vietnam War Society wear uniforms and equipment of US riflemen of the Vietnam War

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Here’s a paradox of the last few decades: as American military power has been less and less effective in achieving Washington’s goals, the rhetoric surrounding that power has grown more and more boastful.

The cliché that our armed forces are the best and mightiest in the world — even if the U.S. military hasn’t won any of its significant wars in the last 50 years — resonates in President Trump’s promise to make America great again. Many Americans, clearly including him, associate that slogan with military power. And we don’t just want to be greater again in the future; we also want to have been greater in the past than we really were. To that end, we regularly forget some facts and invent others that will make our history more comfortable to remember.

The Vietnam War was obviously one of the most disastrous of this country’s past mistakes — and the Pentagon’s “50th Vietnam War commemoration” is a near-perfect example of how both national and military leaders and a willing public have avoided facing important truths about Vietnam and American wars ever since. That’s not just a matter of inaccurate storytelling. It’s dangerous because refusing to recognize past mistakes makes it easier to commit future ones. For that reason, the selective history the Pentagon has been putting out on Vietnam for more than six years, and what that story tells us about the military leadership’s institutional memory, is worth a critical look.

The commemoration website’s historical material — principally a set of fact sheets and an extensive “interactive timeline” — is laced with factual mistakes, errors of both omission and commission. Its history drastically minimizes or more often completely ignores facts that reveal America’s policy and moral failures, its missteps on the ground, and its complicity (along with the enemy’s) in massive civilian suffering not just in Vietnam but in Laos and Cambodia, too. Opposition to the war at home is largely scrubbed out of the record as well.

Perhaps more telling than the misstatements has been the prolonged failure to correct faulty entries that have remained unchanged for years even though the site’s administrators were well aware of them.

Back in 2014, following a critical TomDispatch article by Nick Turse, author of Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam, and pressure from other critics, officials did revise a few items. Those included the My Lai massacre (though the site still does not use the word “massacre” for the murder by U.S. troops of more than 500 civilians, including women and children) and the naval clashes in the Tonkin Gulf that led to the first U.S. air strikes on North Vietnam. But no more corrections followed, leaving a startling range of wrong or misleading statements untouched.

In its most noticeable distortion, the site virtually ignores the domestic debate on the war and the divisions it caused in American society. As of this writing, the 30-year (1945-1975) timeline still includes only terse one-line entries for each of the massive national antiwar protests of October and November 1969. The wave of demonstrations in May 1970 following the U.S. “incursion” in Cambodia gets a somewhat more detailed entry, mentioning the deaths of protesters killed by National Guard troops at Kent State University in Ohio and by police gunfire at Jackson State College in Mississippi.

Aside from those, though, most other important moments in the peace movement are missing from the timeline altogether. The massive 1965 and 1967 protest marches outside the Pentagon are nowhere mentioned. Nor are the chaotic protests the following year outside the Democratic National Convention in Chicago.

Although the Vietnam veterans’ experience is billed as the central theme of the commemoration, veterans who came to oppose the war were also blanked out of its story until just days ago, when officials at the commemoration’s History and Legacy branch learned that I was working on the present article. Only then did the site managers insert a new entry on the dramatic week-long protest in April 1971, when hundreds of disillusioned vets threw away their decorations in front of the U.S. Capitol — an event previously not mentioned in the timeline at all.

The new entry, along with briefly describing the veterans’ protests, refers to future secretary of state and presidential candidate John Kerry’s televised testimony that week before a Senate committee. However, it does not mention the moment that most historians would describe as the most memorable in that hearing, when Kerry, wearing Navy fatigues with his Vietnam ribbons pinned above his shirt pocket, asked the committee members, “How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?”

Even if the veterans’ demonstration and some other notable gaps have been belatedly corrected, they are still worth noting because they illustrate the nature of the message the site has been putting out for the last five or six years, and the underlying attitude that has let acknowledged mistakes go uncorrected for half or more of that time.

Errors of Commission…

Along with misleading omissions, the commemoration site also contains direct misstatements of historical fact that have not been corrected even though site officials have been aware of them for at least a year, or possibly longer.

Examples include a pair of falsehoods that, with symbolic symmetry, distort historical reality at opposite ends of America’s Vietnam involvement. One falsifies a key issue at an early turn on the U.S. path toward involvement in that war, while the other misrepresents an important turning point in its very last stage.

The first false statement is in the U.S. Army fact sheet — there is one for each military service — which says in its opening paragraph, “The Geneva Accords of July 1954 divided Vietnam into a Communist state in the North and an anti-Communist state in the South.”

That is wrong. On the contrary, rather than creating two states, the Geneva agreements, which ended hostilities in France’s failed effort to maintain colonial rule in Indochina, definitively recognized Vietnam as a single nation. The line it established between South and North was defined as a “provisional military demarcation line” temporarily separating the opposing French and Viet Minh armed forces, pending national elections for a unified government. The Geneva Conference’s final declaration explicitly stated that the ceasefire line “should not in any way be interpreted as constituting a political or territorial boundary.”

That is not a minor technicality. It misleads on a fundamental question: What was the war about? Was it illegal foreign aggression by North Vietnam against the South, as the United States and the South Vietnamese government in Saigon — neither of which signed the Geneva treaty — insisted? Or was it a war to reunify an illegally divided country, as the Communist side proclaimed? There are arguments to be made on both sides of that question, but the Geneva accords did not support Washington’s legal and political justification for intervening — and wrongly indicating that it did gives the U.S. claim an uncontested legitimacy it simply did not have.

The second example comes from a passage in the Air Force fact sheet on the December 1972 U.S. air offensive commonly remembered as the “Christmas bombing.”

Using its codename, Linebacker, the fact sheet describes events this way: “As [peace] talks dragged on, President Nixon ordered a second Linebacker operation and in late December 1972, B-52s struck Hanoi and Haiphong at night and A-7s and F-4s struck during the day… The North Vietnamese, now defenseless, returned to negotiations and quickly concluded a settlement. American airpower therefore played a decisive role in ending the long conflict.”

Like the Army’s statement on Geneva, that is false. The December bombing brought no significant new concessions from North Vietnam. The peace agreement signed by Hanoi’s representatives in January 1973 was, in every meaningful respect, identical to the draft treaty they had already accepted in October 1972, months before the bombing.

That earlier text, which differed from the January agreement only on a few minor procedural points, was not a negotiating proposal or a loose agreement in principle. It was a definitive final draft approved down to the last detail by both sides and was not carried out only because the United States withdrew its commitment after South Vietnam’s President Nguyen Van Thieu, whose government had not participated in the negotiations, rejected its terms. Under strong U.S. pressure, Thieu accepted essentially the same agreement in January. So it was Saigon, not Hanoi, that changed its position after the bombing.

That’s a meaningful mistake, too. It mischaracterizes a critical event in the negotiations that ended the U.S. war, and then cites that erroneous history to falsely claim that air power played a decisive role.

…and of Omission

Until the most recent changes spurred by my inquiry, some crucial historical events were missing from the timeline. Although a few of those blank spots have now been nominally filled, several of the revised entries still lack meaningful details.

One notable omission was the March 1970 coup in Cambodia that overthrew Prince Norodom Sihanouk, toppled Cambodia into full-scale war, and set the stage for U.S. troops to enter the country just six weeks later. Another was South Vietnam’s only authentic national election in September 1967, when General Nguyen Van Thieu became president with slightly more than one-third of the votes. An entry on that election was inserted in one of those late amendments to the timeline, but it still says nothing about the surprise second-place candidate, Truong Dinh Dzu, who ran on a peace platform, was arrested soon after the election and imprisoned for the next five years — tarnishing claims that the United States was supporting a legitimate democracy in South Vietnam.

Another gap only partially filled after all these years by the newly amended timeline has to do with the intensive and highly controversial U.S. bombing campaign in Cambodia in 1973, conducted for nearly six months after the Paris peace agreement ended U.S. combat in Vietnam.

Replacing a single oblique reference in the earlier entry, which had merely noted that the U.S. Congress ended funding in August 1973 for “air action in Cambodia and Laos” but said nothing else about that campaign, the timeline now specifies where and when the bombing took place. However, it still gives no details about the scale and severity of those air strikes. (Two hundred and fifty thousand tons of U.S. bombs fell on Cambodia in 1973, more than were dropped on Japan in all of World War II.) Nor does it offer any hint that the bombing did not end Cambodia’s agony. The timeline mentions Cambodia just once more, in a one-sentence entry on its final page saying only, “On April 16 and 17 [1975], Phnom Penh falls to the communist forces, the Khmer Rouge.”

Omissions extend even to the dates that were chosen for the 50th “anniversary” (if that word can be used to designate a span of more than 13 years). Rather than marking any events in the actual Vietnam War, the commemoration officially runs between two U.S. holidays — from Memorial Day in 2012 until Veterans Day in 2025.

A beginning date for the Vietnam War is indeed hard to pin down, but there were perfectly clear choices for its end: January 27, 1973, when U.S. combat ended under the Paris peace agreement; March 29, 1973, when the last American war prisoners were released and the last U.S. combat troops departed; or April 30, 1975, when Saigon surrendered to the Communists. By not choosing any of those, the Pentagon spared veterans and the rest of us from the possible discomfort of noticing the real dates and remembering the great national failure they represent.

Changes Promised, But Unmade

Pentagon commemoration officials have long acknowledged serious shortcomings in the timeline. As far back as March 2015, administrators informed a group of the site’s critics that sooner or later they planned to replace it with a brand-new timeline giving a more accurate and balanced version of events in Vietnam.

The following January, retired Army Colonel Mark Franklin, chief of the commemoration’s History and Legacy Branch, told historians at the American Historical Association’s annual meeting that the updated timeline would be posted “soon.” He even showed slides from what was to be the new version. But nothing on the site had changed in the fall of 2017, many months later, when I contacted his office before writing an earlier article on the commemoration. I was told then that a completely revised website, including a brand-new timeline, was expected to be posted by the end of that year. If that didn’t happen, the plan was to go ahead with corrections in the existing timeline.

Almost exactly a year later, the site has still not been replaced and the revised timeline, prepared several years ago, remains in limbo. The official explanation for the delay is that unresolved contracting issues have kept work on the new site from starting. Franklin has emphatically denied that there has been a deliberate attempt to cling to faulty history or any intent to “portray one particular narrative about the war.” But keeping drastically whitewashed history on the site for so many years after promising to change it does not exactly suggest a strong commitment to provide “historically accurate materials,” as promised on the History and Legacy section’s home page, to help Americans understand their country’s experience in Vietnam.

Mythologizing Our Wars and Ourselves

The commemoration not only tells us something about the Pentagon’s custodians of our Vietnam War memories, it also reveals something much broader and deeper in American political and popular culture: a powerful need to think of ourselves as a righteous, just, and successful country that fights only righteous, just, and successful wars.

This is, of course, hardly a new phenomenon. As far back as 1899, in a speech defending the military campaign that would make the Philippines a U.S. colony, President William McKinley assured his audience that it was not a war for treasure or conquest because such wars were foreign to the American character. “No imperial designs lurk in the American mind,” McKinley declared. “They are alien to American sentiment, thought, and purpose.” The “sole purpose” of sending U.S. troops to the Philippines, he went on, was “the welfare and happiness and the rights of the inhabitants of the Philippine Islands.” As chronicled in Stephen Kinzer’s fascinating 2017 book, The True Flag, that same note was struck in many orations at the time — speeches that perfectly expressed what more than a century later would be called “American exceptionalism.”

Along with nurturing a broad national assumption of moral superiority, for a generation American political leaders have shored up U.S. military ventures with rhetoric that conflates “support the troops” with “support the policy.” A variant of that formula that has been retroactively applied to Vietnam equates “honor the veterans” with “honor the war,” the clear implication being that criticizing the war is indeed disrespecting those veterans. It’s false logic, but looking at the Pentagon commemoration site, it’s impossible not to see its influence there.

The commemoration’s most recent corrections are a welcome but small step toward greater accuracy. But the site is still far from showing the true nature of what this country really did to itself and to many millions of Vietnamese, Laotians, and Cambodians in the tragic mistake we call the Vietnam War. For that, far greater changes will be needed than have been made so far.

Arnold R. Isaacs, a TomDispatch regular, covered the Vietnam War for the Baltimore Sun between June 1972 and the final defeat in April 1975 and is the author of Without Honor: Defeat in Vietnam and Cambodia. He also wrote Vietnam Shadows: The War, Its Ghosts, and Its Legacy and an online report, From Troubled Lands: Listening to Pakistani and Afghan Americans in post-9/11 America. His website is www.arnoldisaacs.net

(Republished from TomDispatch by permission of author or representative)
 
• Category: History • Tags: American Media, American Military, Vietnam War 
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  1. Three items to understand that war:

    1. Watch this short clip where Robert McNamara learns why we could never have won in Vietnam.

    https://www.antiwar.com/blog/2017/09/23/the-only-thing-you-need-to-know-about-the-vietnam-war/

    2. Review this list of 112 battles lost in Vietnam by the US military to learn it was no cakewalk.

    http://www.g2mil.com/lost_vietnam.htm

    This list includes one day in the Dec 1972 Linebacker bombing campaign noted in the article.

    111. Day Three of Operation Linebacker II – Of the 99 huge B-52 bombers in this Dec. 20, 1972 bombing raid on targets around Hanoi, eight were lost to enemy fire, resulting in 34 airmen killed or captured. The Strategic Air Command (SAC) blamed the tactics utilized (flight paths, altitudes, formations, timing, etc.), which had not varied from raids the two previous days. Air Force historian Earl Tilford noted: “Years of dropping bombs on undefended jungle and the routines of planning for nuclear war had fostered a mind-set within the SAC command that nearly led to disaster.”

    3. Watch this short interview where a US Marine explains why we lost.

  2. Stogumber says:

    “The war that we lost” is somehow misrepresenting the facts – there was no “we”. For Mr. Isaacs and his ilk it was the war that they won.

  3. When were wars ever ‘great’ ?
    The ‘great’ Assyrian king Sargon, far worse in cruelty than Stalin.
    Michael Rostovtzeff, ‘Geschichte der Alten Welt, Der Orient and Griechenland’, Bremen 1961 (1924 Berlin)
    This is a translation of the original english

    • Replies: @Epigon
  4. ” William McKinley assured his audience that it was not a war for treasure or conquest because such wars were foreign to the American character. “No imperial designs lurk in the American mind,” McKinley declared. “They are alien to American sentiment, thought, and purpose.” The “sole purpose” of sending U.S. troops to the Philippines, he went on, was “the welfare and happiness and the rights of the inhabitants of the Philippine Islands.” ”

    Manifest Destiny, the Monroe Declaration.
    The British had ‘white man’s burden’.
    Ian Hernon, ‘Britain’s Forgotten Wars, Colonial Campaigns of the 19th Century’, 2003, 2007, Chalford – Stroud
    Stan Hoig, “The Sand Creek Massacre’, Oklahoma, 1961, 1982

    • Replies: @Nawi
  5. As I watch Florida and Georgia Democrats find a way to force recounts to buy the time to “find” the votes they need to claim their “rightful victories,” I can only look back to Vietnam and Korea, where the US prevented nationwide elections that surely would have been lost, and I can only marvel that anyone is surprised that the US electoral system is rife with fraud.

    • Replies: @anon
  6. Nawi says:

    “and the naval clashes in the Tonkin Gulf that led to the first U.S. air strikes on North Vietnam”

    Naval clashes ? which naval clashes is Mr. Isaac talking about ? THERE WERE NO NAVAL CLASHES. Just a big false flag.
    Mr. Isaac is now believing his own lies.

    • Agree: Moi
    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
  7. anarchyst says:

    I notice that the author of this article has swallowed the standard loss of Vietnam lies hook, line and sinker. Americans and South Vietnamese prevailed in every battle-bar none. In fact, TET 1968 was a decisive victory for the South as the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces were decimated. Of course, the American mainstream media claimed it was a victory for the communists.
    For your information, the American Vietnam war was not a civil-war but was an INVASION by the North Vietnamese, who wanted control of the whole country. The INVASION was allowed to continue when American troops left and South Vietnamese troops were not resupplied.
    The author must have watched the Ken Burns’ schlockumentary on Vietnam, in which he built up the North Vietnamese while exacting harsh criticism (lies) on the American and South Vietnamese troops. Of course, to his credit, Burns let it slip that the re-education camps contrary to communist claims (actually prisons) would be in operation for approximately six months after the war was over, it turns out that many former South Vietnamese were detained for as long as twenty years.
    Post-war Vietnam was so wonderful, tens of thousands of boat people risked life and limb to escape that communist paradise [silence].
    As to the flight paths of the B-52s being compromised, North Vietnam’s “hero”, John McCain was instrumental in supplying flight path and radio frequencies and tactics to the North Vietnamese communists.

    • Troll: Biff
  8. According to North Vietnamese General Giap:

    The NVA lost every battle fought against the Americans, in which each side employed at least a battalion-sized force.

    Tet 1968 was a disaster for the VC, which was nearly annihilated.

    The war was won by Americans in Washington, D.C. more than it was won by NVA in South Vietnam.

    My own observation, based upon my own experience and discussions with other veterans:

    The Vietnam War is like an elephant being described to others by blind men standing at opposites ends of the elephant.

    • Agree: anarchyst
  9. Dingo jay says: • Website

    Notice the left stays clear of the two world wars america fought. Were they wonderful.success stories? Vietnam war is an easy mark.especially for draft dodgers to pick on.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
    , @Biff
  10. Nawi says:
    @jilles dykstra

    ““No imperial designs lurk in the American mind,”” ..and then….they killed, in 1o years, during the First Republic, around 1 million Filipinos, more than the Spaniards during the 350 years they were in the Phil.

    • Replies: @anon
  11. Yanks really got inferiority complex. Constantly need to boast, get assurances how great they are and engage in dick swinging contests. America military track record is telling and trying to change it via omissions and lies will lead at the end USA taking on someone who can snap USA neck like a twig. I read someone posting that Americans won every engagement vs vietnamese. Well, no wonfer considering Vietnam was third world country. But USA did lose the war. And that what matters. In Afghanistan USA is losing another war and we can only imagine that by now USA would leave with tails between their legs were Russia to train and supply Taliban like USA did with mujahedeen.

    • Replies: @Moi
  12. @Nawi

    There indeed were no naval clashes, if these imaginary clashes were the result of inexperienced USA naval personnel, or some sort of Sept 11, not clear.
    Clear is that McNamara wanted Johnson to announce the escalation of war on the eight o’clock news
    Edwin E. Moïse, Tonkin Gulf and the escalation of the Vietnam War, 1996, London

  13. @anarchyst

    The Vietnam War was a war of liberation against colonisers, the USA succeeding the French.
    No difference with the Algerian war, the Indonesian war against us Dutch after 1945, the Mau Mau against the British, Angola against the occupiers:
    Jan Breytenbach, ‘Forged in Battle, The birth and growth of 32 Battalion from former enemies and terrorists into decorated soldiers’, 1986, 2001, Pretoria

    • Agree: jacques sheete
  14. In its most noticeable distortion, the site virtually ignores the domestic debate on the war and the divisions it caused in American society.

    That’s par for the course since few nowadays seem to be aware of the massive anti-war sentiment in the USA prior to the “Big Ones,” particularly WW2, and it took goading the Japanese militarists, ( a tiny minority), by every means possible, into attacking Pearl Harbor to change all that.

    History may not repeat cookie cutter style, but it’s pretty much deja vu all over again and the wonder of it is that people keep falling for the same old booshit.

  15. @Dingo jay

    There is no doubt that the USA emerged from WWII as the world’s leading country.
    In just one book I found what the war had cost the average USA citizen, a comparison of average buying power before and after WWII.
    Peter H. Nicoll, ´Englands Krieg gegen Deutschland, Ursachen, Methoden und Folgen des Zweiten Weltkriegs’, 1963, 2001, Tübingen ( Britain’s Blunder, 1953)
    Notice how Duesenburgs and Pierce Arrows disappeared.
    To call something a success that cost over 60 million lives, and made the average American much poorer, not my kind of success.

    • Replies: @jacques sheete
  16. Epigon says:
    @jilles dykstra

    “great” king
    worse than Stalin
    Obvious Jewish slander.
    Sargon II whooped their ass but obviously wasn’t nowhere near thorough enough to eradicate them.

    PS: Great Sargon is of Akkad, not Assyria.

    • Replies: @Z-man
    , @Reuben Kaspate
  17. Biff says:
    @Dingo jay

    During WWII the average fly boy/grunt almost never saw the faces of the civilian Japanese or Germans. In Vietnam things were much different. The grunts were surrounded by a civilian population that hated them, and wanted them either dead or gone – where you gonna find moral in that? Early on there were no draft dodgers, but once there was solid evidence of a disaster there was plenty for them to pick on.

    • Replies: @jacques sheete
  18. Were they wonderful.success stories?

    For the Red millionaires who profited, ye, they were. The rest of us took it in the shorts and are still doing so. Ever hear of war socialism?

  19. I have read most of the classics about the Vietnam War ( Bright Shining Lie, my favorite) and tried as much as possible to understand the prevailing justifications for the US to have become involved in S E Asia and have concluded that as with most things there were no black or white explanations but combinations of some of the 10,000 shades of grey.

    But do bear in mind,
    1) It was not a formally declared war.
    2) The Tonkin Gulf incident was an absolute fraud.

    1) extended the precedent of the Korean ‘police action’ albeit this time without the facade of the UN and in effect set the path that the US follows now. Was this a plan? Doubtful in my opinion but it did lead to where the US tramples nations like Rodan in the post 9/11 world.

    2) extended the precedent of the Maine explosion whereby public opinion is stampeded by a dubious or entirely false event leading to a massive escalation or an actual invasion. 9/11 of course being the latest iteration.

    So I wonder if this latest attempted whitewash of the ‘Nam’ saga is preparing the ground to ante up for a few more ‘splendid little wars’?

    Up here in Canada WW1 is now undergoing a massive Hollywood type promotion out of proportion to current relevance that a jaded and cynical person such as I can only read into as preparing the ground for some more zany “make the world safe for democracy” adventures.

    I can’t help getting that late August 1939 feeling….

    Cheers-

    • Replies: @jacques sheete
    , @anarchyst
  20. @jacques sheete

    Do not think so
    William L. Neumann, ‘America encounters Japan, From Perry to MacArthur’, 1963, 1965, New York
    Robert A. Rosenstone, ‘Mirror in the shrine, American encounters with Meiji Japan’, Cambridge MA
    Mark R. Peattie, ‘Nan’yõ, The Rise and Fall of the Japanese in Micronesia, 1885 – 1945’, Honolulu, 1988, 1992
    John Goette, ‘Japan fights for Asia’, London, 1943
    Lt.-Comdr. Tóta Ishimaru, I.J.N., ‘Japan must fight Britain’, written in 1935, UK
    After admiral Perry in 1843 forced Japan to open up the trade with the west many Japanese understood that the only way to stay independent was to use western technology.
    However, the raw materials were not in Japan.
    So Japan began an imperial strategy, and, of course, clashed with existing empires: British, Russian, French, Dutch, American, Chinese.
    Provoked to war by FDR they lost their independence to this day, as Germany.

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @jacques sheete
    , @ger
  21. @jilles dykstra

    “No difference” is just plain silly. As is calling the US “colonisers succeeding the French. Words have to have generally understood meanings to be meaningful and useful. And the essentially Kikuyu Mau Mau were hardly comparable to the Viet Cong or North Vietnam.

  22. Anon[436] • Disclaimer says:
    @jilles dykstra

    If you insist on deluging us with the contents of your library index cards at least please take the trouble not to misinform us. Admiral Perry arrived in Japan in 1853, not 1843.

    • Replies: @jilles dykstra
  23. @jacques sheete

    TPTSB have managed remedy this problem(anti-war movements)with the elimination of the draft. American’s don’t care about foreign entanglements or the deaths of innocent civilians world wide as they are not forced to participate. As long as some other poor slob is the one dying or losing limbs it is of no concern to the average citizen.

    I assure you things would change if America were to re-institute conscription. You would be amazed at how fast a new anti-war movement would come about.

  24. @jilles dykstra

    I’m not sure what you’re disagreeing with, but that’s OK especially since your summary of the causes is excellent.

  25. @jilles dykstra

    To call something a success that cost over 60 million lives, and made the average American much poorer, not my kind of success.

    Superb. Pat Buchanan and even a goofus like The Shrub would agree.

    To Bush, these nations were not liberated. “As we mark a victory of six decades ago, we are mindful of a paradox,” he said:

    “For much of Eastern and Central Europe, victory brought the iron rule of another empire. V-E day marked the end of fascism*, but it did not end the oppression…The captivity of millions in Central and Eastern Europe will be remembered as one of the greatest wrongs in history.

    Bush told the awful truth about what really triumphed in World War II east of the Elbe. And it was not freedom. It was Stalin, the most odious tyrant of the century. Where Hitler killed his millions, Stalin, Mao, Ho Chi Minh, Pol Pot, and Castro murdered their tens of millions.
    Leninism was the Black Death of the 20th century.

    - Patrick J. Buchanan, Was WWII Worth It?,For Stalin, yes

    http://www.antiwar.com/pat/?articleid=5899

    * He was wrong there. It did not mark the end of fascism at all. Orwell got it right although he was referring to WW1 and fascism, Brit style.Now we have a hybrid of American Red fascism hanging around our necks.

    “And thus we are one step nearer to the great war ‘against Fascism’ (cf. 1914, ‘against militarism’) which will allow Fascism, British variety, to be slipped over our necks during the first week.”

    -George Orwell,SPILLING THE SPANISH BEANS (1937)

  26. Realist says:

    The US military is a source for and a tool of the Deep State. It makes them rich and powerful.

  27. Rich says:

    Another ridiculous article that gives the typical, leftist distortion of reality. Others in this thread have already corrected most of the author’s nonsense, but one statement that keeps popping up is that the South Vietnamese government only held one election, won by a plurality instead of a majority. Can someone tell me when and where the communist North Vietnamese held their election? When did a majority of citizens ever vote to be ruled over by murderous communist thugs? The answer is never.

  28. @Timur The Lame

    Up here in Canada WW1 is now undergoing a massive Hollywood type promotion…

    Interesting. Something is definitely in the wind with the constant hyper-hagiography of the military here in the US where everything associated with that bloody bureaucracy is associated with “heroism” in it’s most grotesque forms.

    More and more places are offering “military” discounts and the cashiers are trained to thank vets for their”service,” which, with endless repetition, is no doubt intended to become firmly implanted as unquestionable “fact.”

    I can’t help getting that late August 1939 feeling….

    In the US, it’s always late August 1939. Constant wars and made up threats to keep the protection racket in business. Sorry to hear that about Canada and I hope others besides the Quebecois can say, “Je me souviens!”

    I wonder what’s going on in GB now?

    Harry Patch, Britain’s last surviving soldier of the Great War, dies at 111

    Patch fervently believed war was “organised murder”. “It was not worth it,” he said. “It was not worth one, let alone all the millions.”

    He was in the trenches at Ypres between June and September 1917, where he and his gang of five machine gunners made a pact not to kill an enemy soldier if they could help it: they would aim for the legs.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/jul/26/world-war-one-veteran-harry-patch-dies-aged-111

    Damned old fartz; what do they know? ;)

  29. DanFromCT says:

    I haven’t read Kill Anything That Moves by Nick Turse and I don’t need to. That kind of empty bravado came from what we called “basecamp commandos,” who like John Kerry typically experienced but for the occasional patrol less risk in their comfy basecamps than people in a city back home did crossing the street. In fact, the actual “riflemen” in the field would now and then go hungry after feeding starving kids their only rations, while their everyday interaction with villagers was respectful, enthusiastic, and caring. Captured VC or NVA regulars were fed, given what medical care was available, and smokes, which they loved. In a war lasting many years, to characterize American soldiers’ behavior by isolated barbarities is a mortal insult deserving of retribution against the left some day for the ruined lives and sullied good name of many of America’s best.

  30. Orwell said in the chapter on wars in his book 1984 and the reasons for them, that wars are not meant to be won , the wars are meant to create fear and hysteria in both countries involved for the governments to gain more and more power at the loss of individual freedom, and this is what the Zionists who control the U.S. government have accomplished!

    Orwell also said that wars are meant to destroy the countries involved to the point where the people are reduced to poverty level from the cost of the wars and the destruction of the infrastructure and this also gives more power to the elites and makes the people easier to control as poverty is a means of control and so the Zionist elites have this down to a science as explained in the Zionist template The Protocols of Zion!

    Just as Orwell said, the U.S. has been subjected to wars in which the Zionists have been the agent provocateurs since WWI and on down to the Mideast wars which were provoked by the Zionist attack on the WTC on 911 thus providing the excuse that the Moslems did it, and thus was America launched into 17 years of perpetual wars all for the benefit of the Zionist elites and the Zionist NWO.

    The wars have put Trillions and Trillions of debt on the American people and have sold the American people into a Zionist debtor prison which is ran by the Zionist privately owned FED and IRS and this debt creation and the wars have no end in sight as they are profitable for the Zionist banking cabal which creates money out of thin air via their FED.

    The enemy is not at the gate, the enemy is the Zionists who control the U.S. government and who are the creators of ISIS aka AL CIADA and are bound to destroy America.

  31. @Johnny Walker Read

    You would be amazed at how fast a new anti-war movement would come about.

    True.

    And I’d be just as amazed if any anti-war movement was not co-opted or crushed, and forgotten, just as the “America First” movement and both its principles and principals were.

  32. @Biff

    During WWII the average fly boy/grunt almost never saw the faces of the civilian Japanese or Germans. In Vietnam things were much different.

    Great point.

    In the post war occupations of “enemy” territory, when the soldiers did come face to face with the “enemy” they often changed their views. Apparently, it was Brit soldiers’ horror at witnessing starving Germans months after the wars supposedly ended that helped put an end to the Brit starvation blockades to name just one example.

  33. @Rich

    When did a majority of citizens ever vote to be ruled over by murderous communist thugs? The answer is never.

    Wrong.

    FDR fits your description and he was voted in 4 times !!!

    Sorry, I know you were referring to VN, but I couldn’t resist!

  34. WHAT says:
    @anarchyst

    >muh tet offensive

    Lol, tell us about daily beatings delivered to murrican aviation by soviet pilots and missile crews instead. Or how glorious war hero McCain fought tooth and nail against efforts to return pows.

    • Replies: @anarchyst
  35. Z-man says:
    @Epigon

    The Egyptians tried but couldn’t do it, the Romans tried and couldn’t do it, the Spaniards tried and couldn’t do it, the Germans tried and couldn’t do it and now I find out that there was another ancient noble people who tried and couldn’t do it. Woe is me. (Wry grin)

  36. @DESERT FOX

    …the wars are meant to create fear and hysteria in both countries involved for the governments to gain more and more power at the loss of individual freedom, and this is what the Zionists who control the U.S. government have accomplished!

    Well done.

  37. Moi says:
    @Sergey Krieger

    There are two countries that have a god complex–Israel, land of the Chosen; and America, the Exceptional nation blessed by Yahweh and his son, Lord Jesus. It’s a toss-up as to who is nuttier.

  38. anarchyst says:
    @jilles dykstra

    You are wrong.

    I WAS THERE…

    For a different and honest assassment told by us who were there, obtain and read “Our War Was Different” by Al Hemingway.

    Look up the United States Marine Corps “Combined Action Program”.

    If you so choose to seek truth about this significant part of American and Vietnamese history.

    Hemingway’s book leaves the geopolitical aspect out of the discussion and deals with those of us who were there.

    • Replies: @jacques sheete
  39. anon[707] • Disclaimer says:
    @The Alarmist

    Its not that that the elections are fraudulent, its that elections are part of the propaganda.. the rift raft must be made to believe they have a say in their own governance. Extending elections to post election fanaticism is part of the propaganda. The big time election spending is part of the promotion of the propaganda.

    The USA constitution does not permit any of its imprison group Americans (340,000,000 people) to vote on, be a part of, or be informed about USA affairs. The only exception to this restriction on Americans is the American that has been promoted from slave class to slave driver class. Such promotions are temporary.

    To earn promotion to slave driver class one must be appointed candidate by one of the two oligarch controlled political parties (democrats or republicans); then as a candidate that person must win an election.

    The Pharaohs dictate the laws, the slave drivers encode them into the law books, and shield the Oligarchs from view, and make sure the Oligarchs are protected and the enslaved are punished for not obeying the laws.

    The reason for popular elections has little to do with who is a promoted person, or how the affairs of the USA were conducted. Instead, elections all about deceiving the 340,000,000 slave class Americans into thinking (deceptive propaganda) the constitution that authorizes the USA gives the imprisoned class a say in the affairs of the Oligarch controlled USA, clearly it does not.

    Nothing would change at the USA if elections were eliminated., the same people would occupy the halls of congress and house of white, and they would conduct the affairs of the oligarchs as directed or be promptly dismissed.

  40. anarchyst says:
    @Timur The Lame

    Canada shielded and protected the cowardly draft dodgers. Of course, they claim to have the “moral high ground”, which is totally false…
    There are many draft dodgers who regret their actions, some of them even claiming to be “Vietnam veterans”.

    • Replies: @Curmudgeon
  41. @DESERT FOX

    This is what the Zionists who control the U.S. government have accomplished!

    Good one. You’ve even done von Mises one better by pointing out who controls the government, though in fairness he was referring to government in general.

    Anyway, Mises explains a key part of the genesis of the militaristic cesspool we ‘Merkins have long inhabited.:

    The market economy, say the socialists and the interventionists, is at best a system that may be tolerated in peacetime. But when war comes,..War, and in any case modern total war, peremptorily requires government control of business.

    …[ this dogma] served in both World Wars as a convenient pretext for innumerable measures of government interference with business which in many countries step by step led to full “war socialism.” When the hostilities ceased… people contended, even more government control than the period of war… The most appropriate thing would be to cling permanently to government control in order to be duly prepared for any possible emergency.⚓✪

    An examination of the problems which the United States had to face in the second World War will clearly show how fallacious this reasoning is.

    -Ludwig von Mises, Human Action: A Treatise on Economics, ed. Bettina Bien Graves (4th revised edition) (Irvington-on-Hudson: Foundation for Economic Education, 1996). 11/9/2018. http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/308#Mises_0068_2813

    To summarize, the wars gave those who control government more and more control of business. I wonder who wins in that scenario!

  42. anarchyst says:
    @jilles dykstra

    Big difference between Vietnam and the other wars you mention…
    In Vietnam the communist North Vietnamese INVADED the South as they “wanted the whole pie”. It was an INVASION.
    The people of the South wanted no part of communism, preferring to be left alone.
    The United States fear was that communism would spread to the other Southeast Asia countries, hence the involvement in Vietnam.
    No other country provides assistance and attempts to “repair the damage” after the conclusion of hostilities…

  43. Brilliant brain wrote this article.

    Spilled milk.
    If US would have assumed the policy of non interference and having the most powerful military would just wait until all world begs for US interference, like it was in case of Kuwait,today US would rule the world jut by its word.
    What a missed opportunity.
    What a pity.

  44. @anarchyst

    You are wrong.

    I WAS THERE…

    He’s right.

    I was there too.

  45. But no more corrections followed, leaving a startling range of wrong or misleading statements untouched.

    As if this were an aberration. American exceptionalism and triumphalist postures, along with MSM collusion, make it virtually impossible for facts or truths to figure in narratives about America’s berserk warmongering. Lies and fabrications are indispensable for keeping the delusion of moral grandeur alive. Very few news sites highlight the 2 million Vietnamese dead as a moral and criminal abomination. Often it is the aggressor fatalities that occupy center stage (and now with an invented malady to boot: PTSD, one exclusively reserved for the aggressor, never the vanquished), with a touch of appeals to victimhood as added perks. And the public willingly swallows this drivel in preparation for the next assured instances of wanton mass murder. History repeating itself cannot be truer than in occasions of American genocidal mania on free reign.

    • Agree: jacques sheete
    • Replies: @Anon
  46. @anarchyst

    The United States fear was that communism would spread to the other Southeast Asia countries, hence the involvement in Vietnam.

    I generally agree with your comments, but that old canard I have to dismiss, especially since the US ruling elite have a record of supporting some of the worst regimes imaginable, including Red ones. If one believes that we were fighting Commynizm there, then one would have to explain why we supported it in the USSR and China for instance.

    Or perhaps it wasn’t the type of Commynizm approved by our rulers and masters?

    • Replies: @anarchyst
  47. nsa says:
    @anarchyst

    You geezers still fighting on to victory from high atop your bar stool lookouts down at the VFW lounge? Knock down a few more two dollar doubles, forget your prostate woes, and recount those glory days for the rest of us………

  48. Laughing . . .

    ohhh not again. here’s an article that makes claims about distortions, but can only dredge up what the authors think should have been included. But they make no case as to how their exclusion if that is in fact the case amount to misleading information about Vietnam.

    Noting the horrors of warfare is not by definition a sign that said war should not have been fought. War is a filthy nasty business. And on occasion human beings indulge in its insanity to some political end.

    The problem here is that if one cleans the episode of distractions, and sticks to the events concerning the war itself — the US comes out a winner. And that is what you and the anti-Vietnam protesters despise. You are uncomfortable with the facts as they are cheif among them — that the US position was one of defense, as opposed to aggression —

    we did not invade Vietnam —

    And that alone makes Iraq comparisons near impossible.

  49. @anarchyst

    North Vietnamese INVADED the South as they “wanted the whole pie”. It was an INVASION.

    A perfect example of revisionist “history”. The price of ignorance and brainwashing is more ignorance. If the North Vietnamese INVADED the South (of the same identity), what exactly were the Americans (with nothing in common with the Vietnamese) doing on a mission (earlier abandoned by the French) that killed more than 2 million Vietnamese?

  50. Z-man says:
    @DESERT FOX

    You know sometimes I find some of these claims especially about the Fed to be outlandish. But then there is anecdotal experience and evidence.
    I was working once on a project at the Federal Reserve office in beautiful downtown Newark, New Jersey. Whell, I had to deal with the rep from the Fed on the construction project and she turned out to be a fairly pleasant rotund, ugly Jew-ish person who didn’t seem to know much and who probably got the job thru her tribal connections. Oops there it is!. (Grin)

  51. @nsa

    …and recount those glory days for the rest of us………

    Oh, G-wd, please!!! No! Anything but thaaaat!!!!

    There are few things more pathetic, I think.

  52. @EliteCommInc.

    … the US comes out a winner…

    Why is that so important? And it what ways did it “win?”

    Did the whole US come out a winner or was it mainly the usual suspects, or what?

    How ’bout all them pitiful vets and their families?

    Did our country become freer after that? Did government become smaller or more intrusive because of it, or what?

    Ever live through the inflation of the ’70s? Ever wonder what contributed to it and who raked in the resulting profits?

    As ‘Ol MG Butler told us, war is a racket, and I think it’s high time we prols and peasants got that concept firmly planted between our ears.

  53. @anarchyst

    Obviously not the slightest idea about French colonial misrule and how the USA tried to take over Vetnam from the French
    William J. Lederer and Eugene Burdick, ‘The Ugly American’, 1958, 1962, London

  54. @EliteCommInc.

    And on occasion human beings indulge in its insanity to some political end.

    Occassion? You must not be a ‘Merkin.

    Political end? I’d say politics is merely an excuse or the means to some economic or hubristic end.

  55. @Anon

    I specify my sources.
    And my memory is not infallible.

  56. @Justsaying

    A perfect example of revisionist “history”.

    Actually, it’s a perfect example of accepted, not revisionist, history and it would be more properly called bullshit. What we really need is more of the “revisionist” variety, and for the reason you stated,

    The price of ignorance and brainwashing is more ignorance.

    And ignorance leads to slavery, as Epictetus would have it, so there we have it.

    • Replies: @jacques sheete
  57. @ anarchyst,

    I don’t know what your comment had to do with my post but you are right in that Canada did try to take the high road even before the Vietnam conflict with respect to actions by the United States specifically after WW2.

    It was a cultural/political/inferiority type thing but you might be interested to know that both countries had serious invasion/defense plans for war on each other from the highest levels up until the early thirties so all was not always eye to eye.

    ‘Diefenbaker & Kennedy’ by Knowlton Nash gives a good summary of the forgotten history between these good ‘friends’ starting from the American Revolution right through the War of 1812 when Canada opened up a can of whoop-ass and burned down the White house.

    It is a good thing that Red Army rape wasn’t in vogue during that war or y’all would be speaking Canadian now eh?

    Seriously, Canada had no legal obligation to return draft dodgers. They have since closed that loop. Could you please give me a cite where a former draft dodger is claiming to be combat vet? That is a new one on me and barring mental issues makes no sense in any way or shape.

    Cheers-

    • Replies: @anarchyst
  58. @jacques sheete

    I think ‘ol von Clausewitz’ analysis was too superficial on many points, as can be read here.:

    http://oll.libertyfund.org/pages/clausewitz-war-as-politics-by-other-means

    He did, though remark that war is a tool.:

    We see, therefore, that War is not merely a political act, but also a real political instrument,

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
  59. Respect says:

    https://www.elespanol.com/reportajes/20171211/268723778_0.html

    Franco warned Johnson not to get involved in the Vietnam war for technical military reasons

    “Mi experiencia militar y política me permite apreciar las grandes dificultades de la empresa en que os veis empeñados: la guerra de guerrillas en la selva ofrece ventajas a los elementos indígenas subversivos que con muy pocos efectivos pueden mantener en jaque a contingentes de tropas muy superiores; las más potentes armas pierden su eficacia ante la atomización de los objetivos; no existen puntos vitales que destruir para que la guerra termine; las comunicaciones se poseen en precario y su custodia exige cuantiosas fuerzas. Con las armas convencionales se hace muy difícil acabar con la subversión. La guerra en la jungla constituye una aventura sin límites”.

    ( My political and military experience lets me apreciate the great difficulties in the war that you are facing : the guerrilla `s war in the the forest offers advantages to the indigenous elements which with very few effectives can contain much superior forces ; the most powerful weapons lose its efficacy in front of the atomization of objectives : there are not vital points to destroy to end the war ; communication ( lines ) are held precariously and its vigilance demands numerous forces . With conventional arms it is very difficult to end subversion . War in the jungle is an adventure without limits )

  60. @jacques sheete

    Did Clausewitze also invent the wheel?

  61. @Epigon

    The man must have read a million books for he cites them all the time, therefore, how could he be wrong?

    • Replies: @Wally
  62. anarchyst says:
    @Justsaying

    You need to abandon the commonly accepted myth that Vietnam is a homogeneous country. There are many differences between North Vietnam, the Central Highlands and the South of Vietnam, cultural, social and religious. Even the language differences are substantial.
    The North (communists) invaded the South…simple as that.

  63. anarchyst says:
    @jacques sheete

    Use a little common sense, pal…
    China and the Soviet Union are much larger countries…

  64. anarchyst says:
    @nsa

    Don’t drink, don’t smoke, have never been in a VFW lounge, but DO know the history and geopolitics of Vietnam much more than most…

  65. anarchyst says:
    @Justsaying

    See my comment about the differences between North, Central, and South Vietnam…not only differences in languages, but social and cultural customs as well. Vietnam is not a monolithic country, as most historians and people mistakenly believe.
    After the communists took over the south, they had to temper their “rule” as the people who lived in the south would not put up with the harshness of the regime as practiced in the North…

  66. anarchyst says:
    @WHAT

    You are correct about mccain. He was a lifelong scumbag. mccain received preferential treatment as a POW as he revealed radio and radar frequencies, flight plans and other information despite NOT being tortured. His war injuries were a result of him improperly ejecting from his aircraft. When he was captured, he asked for and received medical treatment for his injuries.
    As for the TET offensive being reported as an American “failure”, noting could be further from the truth. North Vietnamese General Giap admitted that the Viet Cong were decimated as a result…

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  67. anarchyst says:
    @Timur The Lame

    It is GUILT for not serving, seeing the much-delayed accolades that Vietnam veterans now receive. Yes, there are quite a few “anti-war protesters” who claim to be Vietnam veterans, because they have guilt…
    It is interesting to note, that as soon as the draft was abolished, the protests stopped. These cowards were only thinking about one-thing–saving their own skins.
    Even present-day uber-patriot rock-and-roll guitarist Ted Nugent is suspect as he declared that Vietnam was “not his war” and defecatd and urinated on himself before reporting for induction, in order to get out of serving.
    There are hundreds, if not thousands of people in high places who “avoided” serving, Dick Cheney among others who are regarded by those of us who DID serve as “chickenhawks”–willing to send others off to war while sitting comfortably here in the good ol’ USA.

  68. anonymous[333] • Disclaimer says:

    The past has to be scrubbed clean so as to continue the myth of America acting out of the noblest of motives, dropping bombs on people around the world for their own good. It’s ridiculous of course but as long as you can bamboozle the majority of people you can keep on leading them to the next war of aggression. The Vietnam war was a huge miscalculation, underestimating their ability and will to fight back. Although superior American firepower enabled the US to prevail in any real battle the Vietnamese were able to inflict enough casualties to increase the cost to the Americans, raising tensions on the home front to the point of domestic rebellion. People didn’t want their sons to die in that stupid, meaningless war and they were right. They live there and could fight for the next thirty years whereas the US was just visiting.
    Communism? Today we do bang-up business with China and Vietnam, two supposedly communist countries. Apparently that’s no barrier to making massive deals with them. The Americans who died in that war died for nothing but the stupidity of the American leadership but of course it’s not polite to say that out loud. They were the expendables.

  69. anarchyst says:
    @nsa

    Never been inside a VFW lounge, but have extensively studied the geopolitical, cultural, social and military aspects of the Vietnam situation and are more knowledgeable than most.

  70. @anarchyst

    We didn’t shield or protect anyone. There were people that sought asylum in the country and went through proper immigration channels. Most of them were allowed to stay. There were others who came to “visit” and stayed. I, personally, met two, a Black from Buffalo, and a White from Minnesota, who were found and deported.

    We have enough of our own baggage with our Federal Government(s) constantly on the lookout to apologize for a previous government’s actions. A day or two ago it was apologizing for refusing to let Jews in, pre WWII. Guess what? The overwhelming majority of Canadians, pre-WWII fully supported that refusal. It’s like they are pissing on my parents and grandparents graves.

  71. Art says:

    GOD DAM the GENERALS.

    When all is said and done, the Vietnam war was a total loser for everyone. Only glorious bloody ribbons, decorating general’s chests remain.

    58,000 of America’s youth dead, 250,000 Vietnamese soldiers dead, 1,350,000 dead civilian Vietnamese. With millions more forever maimed and dying early deaths. All for the general’s glory. The US generals sacrificed human lives and treasure, so they could get their picture on a West Point wall.

    The American soldier died winning every battle in Vietnam – but the generals lost the war.

    TRUTH. The generals knew that they could not win – but they would not quit – they went on and on, year after year, killing and slaughtering Americans and Vietnamese.

    GOD DAM the GENERALS

    Think Peace — Art

    p.s. Today the US generals fortify the J-MIC Security State. To a man they support Israel.

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
    , @Art
  72. anon[231] • Disclaimer says:
    @Nawi

    ..and then….they killed, in 1o years, during the First Republic, around 1 million Filipinos

    wow, is that true?

    • Replies: @Nawi
    , @Respect
    , @Respect
  73. @Art

    German generals did not know that there are no roads in Russia, and American Generals did not know that most of Vietnam is a jungle. Most of American generals were puzzled and asking: Where in the hell is that country,

    • Replies: @Art
    , @jilles dykstra
  74. Wally says:
    @Justsaying

    said:
    “A perfect example of revisionist “history”.”

    A very dumb comparison.

    All history is necessarily revisionist.

    Revisionism has the general function of bringing historical truth to a public that had been drugged by wartime lies and propaganda.

    The task of revisionism has been to penetrate beneath these superficialities and appearances to the stark realities underneath — realities which show, certainly in this century, the United States, Great Britain, and France — the three great “democracies” — to be worse than any other three countries in fomenting and waging aggressive war. Realization of this truth would be of incalculable importance on the current scene.

    For revisionism, in the final analysis, is based on truth and rationality. Truth and rationality are always the first victims in any war frenzy; and they are, therefore, once again an extremely rare commodity on today’s “market.” Revisionism brings to the artificial frenzy of daily events and day-to-day propaganda, the cool but in the last analysis glorious light of historical truth. Such truth is almost desperately needed in today’s world.”

    - Righteous Jew, Murray Rothbard, Review of The Origins of the Second World War, 1966

    http://www.codoh.com

  75. Wally says:
    @Reuben Kaspate

    Indeed, he cites books that he has never read.
    He just searches a library’s database, and copies the results thinking it makes him an expert.
    Hell, one can find endless books on witchcraft as well.

    I’ve called him out for actual quotes and got nothing.

  76. On the topic of the United States scrubbing military adventures you will never see any mention of the invasion of Grenada (population 91,000) possibly for several reasons. Despite the ridiculous contrast in military capabilities this invasion was given the laughable designation “Urgent Fury”, a designation that may have been more than telling.

    I went to a seemingly pro US military website to refresh my memory on this event and my jaw almost dropped upon reading the details. I thought that maybe some general had snatched the Bay of Pigs game plan in haste thinking it was the Okinawa file. Keystone Kops join the army it was.

    I suppose in retrospect pre-dementia Ronnie needed some kind of martial glory because only days before the devastating Beirut Barracks
    Bombing had taken place. Unfortunately for him it was an embarrassment but eventually a win did register in scorecard.

    Being young, naive and pro US at the time I still remember taking a pause and thinking “since when do the good guys go out and attack sovereign mini states?”. My journey it seems was about to begin.

    Come to think of it I may have even believed that the US Civil War was fought over freeing the slaves. Actually, no. I was never that stupid.

    Cheers-

  77. Art says:
    @Ilyana_Rozumova

    German generals did not know that there are no roads in Russia, and American Generals did not know that most of Vietnam is a jungle. Most of American generals were puzzled and asking: Where in the hell is that country,

    Llyana,

    Hmm? The bastard generals found Vietnam using agent orange. Americans and Vietnamese are still dying prematurely because of agent orange. Men gasp for air in their last years because of agent orange. Children were born disfigured because of agent orange.

    When your anger subsides – Think Peace — Art

  78. Nawi says:
    @anon

    https://britsinthephilippines.top/philippines-genocide-3-million-filipinos-killed/

    Other people talk about 1 million or 1.5, different numbers for the first genocide of the XX century.

    What happened it is not well known in the West…., we, the civilized Westerns do not talk about those things, particularly when they are commited by us.

    • Replies: @anon
  79. ger says:
    @jilles dykstra

    Don’t you just hate it when a school marm shows up with a history or english lesson? In propaganda, it is called misdirection. LOOK … it was 1853! Never mind the message that Perry came to strip mine the Japanese, an American model since George Washington.

  80. @EliteCommInc.

    Ah, defense? Don’t you think south eastern asia is way too far from USA for defences purposes. You had to bring more than half million GIs half way around the globe for defence. This is called aggression. One does not defend own country 6000 miles away from her borders.

  81. Agent76 says:

    May 16, 2013 The Psychology of Authority

    What percentage of people would obey if they were ordered to commit murder? The answer might surprise you.

  82. There was no US mistake in Vietnam, Laos or Cambodia. It was all deliberate and evil. There has never been an accidental war by any country on earth. [email protected]

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    , @nonny
  83. Tod says:

    I’ts funny how both American “patriots” and American “haters” look at all the wars like they where real military operations. The truth is, that besides WW2, where the USA military fared rather poorly, all the other wars where just part of a protection racket. Win or lose? Doesn’t matter! What matters is that the USA will hit you with a big stick if you don’t buy their crappy products.
    There are people saying: “We could have spent all that war money on the economy!” No you couldn’t! Nobody would have bought your overpriced or plain poisonous goods ( read financial services, the dollar, etc) without the threat of destruction. You economy is dependent on war since a long time. Ford’s America is gone my friends, so you either embrace the protection racket, or get ready to compete with some really smart, or cheap products.
    And there are also the wars ordered by Israel, same shit, doesn’t matter if you lose or win, what matters is that people who don’t behave get smacked.

  84. @Johnny Walker Read

    Yes, but… I draw your attention to a curious fact that I have been inclined to associate mostly with the microdemographic changes in the last 70 years, I.e. with smaller family sizes, though other’s occur to me as maybe contributing. That fact, or phenomenon, is the enormous fuss made about American casualties in Iraq when the comparison is 4 or 5 thousand deaths in Iraq compared to 55,000 in Vietnam.

  85. @Donald A Thomson

    Do you know the great Australian historian Geoffrey Blainey’s “The Causes of War” (1973; 3rd Edition I see 1988)?

    This 210 review may give you the flavour

    https://researchers.mq.edu.au/en/publications/the-causes-of-intrastate-war-a-critique-of-blaineys-hypothesis

    Apparently it was required reading in US military academic institutions from its original publication.

    Walking in the same park as Blainey I once taxed him with the suggestion that wars could, as some op-ed and leader writers would certainly insist, be started to divert the attention and defuse the discontents of the aggressor’s population regardless of any other rational calculus. I don’t think he conceded any ground. (I don’t remember anything of the detail for the explanation in the book for the weaker party causing a war by not giving in immediately!. There’s still time. I heard the 88 year old give a 40 minute no-notes lecture recently before fielding questions deftly).

  86. @jacques sheete

    Excuse the delay. I was in enemy territory today — a CA. college and worked with a student. No disrespect intended.

    “Why is that so important? And it what ways did it “win?”

    A. The article is a complain about devaluing the truth. So from a historical perspective in dealing accurately with the truth — it’s valuable to acknowledge that the US won that conflict.

    The consequence of which was the agreement by both parties, that South Vietnam would remain South Vietnam and that any reconciliation would be engaged via of peaceful means. The North Vietnamese violated that agreement as they had every agreement regarding peace. I think it is important that we understand the US role accurately. And that goal was to secure that the S. Vietnamese could determine their destiny.

    “Did the whole US come out a winner or was it mainly the usual suspects, or what?”

    B. In my view — the agreement to peace was a win for everyone. I cannot explain or justify the utter contempt that the North Vietnamese demonstrated to the peace and once again started a war to get their way after the US departed. The voracious appetite that communism breeds perhaps.

    “How ’bout all them pitiful vets and their families?”

    C. War is a filthy, nasty, insane process. But damaged human beings is one of the consequences. While for pacifists peace at all costs is the end —- most of us choose a different path, to fight for what is “ours” , what we consider right and just . . . survival, love even. I have not the power to change the hearts of my fellows to a state where taking a blade and shoving it through another breast bone, or dropping 500 lbs bombs severing the human body in as many parts — simply is not an option. And the consequence is human travail on many levels.

    “Did our country become freer after that? Did government become smaller or more intrusive because of it, or what?”

    D. Our efforts in Vietnam was one of the few humanitarian military interventions ever engaged. I have no record that engaging in warfare has ever made any government smaller, unless it’s on the losing side.

    Ever live through the inflation of the ’70s? Ever wonder what contributed to it and who raked in the resulting profits?

    E. Here are some data sets — no references to Vietnam to the cause of inflation, I didn’t think there would be any, but I thought I would check

    1. https://www.federalreserve.gov/pubs/ifdp/2004/799/ifdp799.htm
    2. https://www.investopedia.com/articles/economics/09/1970s-great-inflation.asp
    3. https://www.forbes.com/sites/modeledbehavior/2013/09/08/everything-you-thought-you-
    knew-about-the-1970s-inflation-and-the-us-economy-is-wrong/#12160cb92d05
    4. https://www.quora.com/Why-hasn%E2%80%99t-rampant-inflation-been-a-problem-since-the-
    1970%E2%80%99s

    I make no arguments that war does not impact the economy. But in the case of the Vietnam conflict, it was not a major contributor based on what i have read today or prior to today.

    “As ‘Ol MG Butler told us, war is a racket, and I think it’s high time we prols and peasants got that concept firmly planted between our ears.”

    Since the first human being threw a rock at his fellows, I am convinced that weapons developers have made money on providing weapons. As long a there are wars, those fighting will seek weapons and there will be those who provide them at a price. Not defending Vietnam woould have changed that reality.

    • Replies: @Mike P
  87. @Sergey Krieger

    That’s referred to as supporting an ally by invitation. The US did not invade Vietnam, not even North Vietnam, though I for one think we should have full force and ended the matter.

    The aggression you are attempting to pain here would require that the US violated the sovereign territory of Vietnam without their permission or against their will.

    • Replies: @Jesse James
  88. @jacques sheete

    Correction:

    Not defending Vietnam would not have changed that reality.

  89. @Sergey Krieger

    As for defensive strategies — the further the boundaries the better the defense. Hence the reference to the former Soviet Union’s “satellite states”. Which served a buffer between the Soviet Union proper and her potential enemies.

    Communist expansion was part and parcel to the very same notion and why the Soviets supported the North Vietnamese – 3,277 miles, the Chinese – 1770 miles, the Cubans – 6,708 miles, Angolans – 6,808 miles

    • Replies: @obwandiyag
  90. @Rich

    You do not seem to have noticed that all elections are completely phony. They determine nothing at all. You have fallen for a bed time story.

  91. @anarchyst

    The Germans too, thought they had won WW I on the basis of the news coverage. And you too live in a dream world.

  92. @EliteCommInc.

    The US did violate the territory of N. Vietnam by bombing the cities there. The US goal was to maintain a western colonial military vassal state in S. Vietnam under the usual ruse of guaranteeing ‘free elections’ ( in a one party dictatorship ) after the French departed. The Ivy League psychopath class overseeing that war is still in charge today which bears out in the so-called post-Cold War world order.

    • Replies: @EliteCommInc.
  93. Mike P says:
    @EliteCommInc.

    The article is a complain about devaluing the truth. So from a historical perspective in dealing accurately with the truth — it’s valuable to acknowledge that the US won that conflict.

    The consequence of which was the agreement by both parties, that South Vietnam would remain South Vietnam and that any reconciliation would be engaged via of peaceful means. The North Vietnamese violated that agreement as they had every agreement regarding peace.

    Both sides knew perfectly well that this “agreement” was a charade, only meant for domestic consumption in the US, and that after the withdrawal of the US the South Vietnamese collapse was just a matter of time. The US “won” the war to the extent that they could compel the North Vietnamese to join them in that charade. In every other way, the North Vietnamese won – they may have lost most battles, but they won the war simply by outlasting the Americans.

  94. @Jesse James

    excuse me, but that was the nation at war with S. Vietnam and as ally we defended S. Vietnam which included air raids.

    That does not constitute an invasion, either.

    Colonial outpost — false. The election were discouraged because there was no way to have fair election while the country was being terrorized by N. Vietnam incursions and Vietcong bombings.

    Colonial outpost — apparently unfamiliar with just how difficult it was to get the government of S. Vietnam to listen to advice from the US on polity. They were nott puppets.

  95. @Mike P

    Your contention here suggests that the US had its fingers crossed. maybe. But what was clear – is that had N. Vietnam moved against the South while Pres Nixon was in office — barring any barriers. They would reap the whirlwind.

    Which explain why after we departed and,Congress cuts funds and Pres Nixon was no longer in office they launched a second war in violation of the treaty agreement.

    This is old hat — feel free to dig into the archives, where this matter is discussed at length and in detail.

    Good grief, if I compel you to come to the table and do what you swore you would not — you’ve lost. The fact that start fighting after I leave the table just makes you a liar, a weasel, a hypocrite, untrustworthy, disingenuous, etc., etc, etc.

    I have no idea why anyone would stoop to call that winning —

    The US has lost the following conflicts:

    war of 1812

    Iraq

    probably Afghanistan

  96. @Mike P

    ” . . . they may have lost most battles, but they won the war simply by outlasting the Americans.”

    We fought that war with one hand tied behind our backs and your understanding of the matter is peculiar — the reason that Ho Chi Min and company came to the table to quit. Is because Ho Cho’s prediction came true.

    He wanted to avoid US involvement because he knew/believed if the “americans” got involved he could not win. He had served with US troops in Asia during WWII, and he knew they could and would fight. They did not bolt, they gradually became increasingly more aggressive.

    • Replies: @Mike P
  97. this is the kind of nonsense one gets about Vietnam.

    The popular refrain

    “All we are saying is give peace a chance.” John Lennon —

    problem — the refrain was to the US government. But the US would have been happy for peace — it was the North that was constantly breaking the peace. They were the invaders.

    Mr. Lennon was stunningly silent when the North invaded S. Vietnam and began their re-education murder spree. Amazing no quaint tunes about the peaceful Vietnamese.

    good grief.

  98. @anarchyst

    You lost, loser. Nyahnyahnyahnyah,. You lost. You lost. Period. All you losers talk all this sour grapes persiphlage. You lost. Lost. L-o-s-t. Lost. Loser.

    • Troll: anarchyst
  99. Defending the Vietnam War is a sure sign of advanced senility.

  100. Agent76 says:

    Jun 20, 2016 The Century of the Self – Part 1: “Happiness Machines”

    The story of the relationship between Sigmund Freud and his American nephew, Edward Bernays. Bernays invented the public relations profession in the 1920s and was the first person to take Freud’s ideas to manipulate the masses. He showed American corporations how they could make people want things they didn’t need by systematically linking mass-produced goods to their unconscious desires.

  101. Lets not forget the CIA/Mossad heroin trade. Also: see Afghanistan!

    from Michael Collins Piper’s Final Judgment
    Perhaps the biggest secret of the Vietnam War is that our Central Intelligence Agency seized control of the infamous Golden Triangle during that time period, then, along with assistance from various elements of Organized Crime, shipped huge amounts of heroin out of that area into our country. Because piles of money were being made from this practice and many others, those who stood to profit from this horrendous war – the armament manufacturers, bankers, military men, and drug dealers – met any suggestion to withdraw from Vietnam with immediate consternation. But that’s exactly what John F. Kennedy intended to do upon re-election. In fact, he had already planned on telling the American people that their troops would be back home by 1965. Think about this momentous decision for a moment. If we had exited Vietnam by 1965, EIGHT years of bloodshed in the jungles and civil unrest on America’s streets and campuses could have been alleviated.

    Kennedy’s intended change in Vietnam policy – his plan to unilaterally withdraw from the imbroglio – infuriated not only the CIA but elements in the Pentagon and their allies in the military-industrial-complex. By this time, of course, the Lansky Syndicate had already set-up international heroin running from Southeast Asia through the CIA-linked Corsican Mafia in the Mediterranean. The joint Lansky-CIA operations in the international drug racket were a lucrative venture that thrived as a consequence of deep U.S. involvement in Southeast Asia as a cover for drug smuggling activities.

    Piper’s simple one-paragraph explanation may be the most concise overview of the Vietnam War ever written. The military men and defense contractors were making out like bandits from the War Machine, while the CIA crooks and Lansky-led Mobsters (via Santo Traficante as the major wheeler-dealer) were likewise padding their pockets. Author Peter Dale Scott, in Deep Politics and the Death of JFK, said of this phenomenon, “The flood of drugs into this country since WWII was one of the major ‘unspeakable’ secrets leading to the ongoing cover-up of the Kennedy assassination.”

    To provide a broader perspective on this situation, Professor Alfred McCoy stated in The Politics of Heroin, “Since the prohibition of narcotics in 1920, alliances between drug brokers and intelligence agencies have protected the global narcotics traffic. Given the frequency of such alliances, there seems a natural attraction between intelligence agencies and criminal syndicates. Both are practitioners of what one retired CIA operative has called the ‘clandestine arts’ – the basic skill of operating outside the normal channels of civil society. Among all the institutions of modern society, intelligence agencies and crime syndicates alone maintain large organizations capable of carrying out covert operations without fear of detection.”

    On the government side, the two main Golden Triangle runners were Ted Schackley and Thomas Clines – the same two men who ran Operation Mongoose (the plot to take out Fidel Castro). Thus, from 1960-1975, the CIA deployed a secret force of 30,000 Hmong tribesmen to fight the Laotian Communists. They also created heroin labs in this area; then brought it out via their own private airline – Air America.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_America_(airline)

    Alfred McCoy, in The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade, describes how the CIA first gave smack to our own American soldiers in Vietnam before shipping it into the United States, where Lansky mobsters dealt it on the streets.

    Sam Giancana’s biographers reinforced this point by stating that while organized crime did its thing, “The CIA looked the other way – allowing over $100 million a year in illicit drugs to flow through Havana into the U.S. It was an arrangement similar to all the rest they’d made. The CIA received 10% of the take on the side of narcotics, which they utilized for their undercover slush fund.”

    After the Mob-Mossad and the CIA generated this dirty money, they laundered it into secret bank accounts controlled by the international bankers. That way, the government couldn’t get their hands on it and the funds could be invested in the stock market, loaned out to other businesses on the take, or channeled into the Secret Services’ black budgets.

    So, even though the above information is only the tip of the iceberg, now do you see why it was so important to the CIA/Mobster/international banker cabal that JFK didn’t pull America out of Vietnam? The money (via illegal drug trafficking and for the War Machine) was incredible, while CONTROL of another area of the globe (the Golden Triangle) was secured.

    As a final note, only FOUR DAYS after John Kennedy was assassinated, Lyndon Baines Johnson, his successor, put his name on NSAM 273, which secured our increased involvement in Southeast Asia. These guys weren’t wasting any time! Within a few short months, our involvement in Vietnam went from 20,000 troops to a quarter of a million! The CIA had won, and ten years later 58,229 American soldiers were dead – truly shocking and abysmal behavior – an embarrassment and blight on the American consciousness.

  102. Now I’m going to tell you what conservative military historians say. Lots of them.

    The Vietnam War was “lost” because it could never have been “won.” And our owners knew it. The US has not fought a war to win since World War II. And then, it was only by accident. If it had been up to the US alone, it would still be going on.

    No. US wars are for war profiteering. If the war ends by being “won,” then the gravy train stops.

    No, this is what military historians say, conservative, old-fashioned, academic military historians, the kind that have read more books than you have ever seen:

    You will notice, the US never crossed the 17th parallel. Even though the only way to “win” is to occupy your enemy’s country and capture his capital. Why did the US not cross this line?

    Because of the Korean War. Our owners knew that, if the us occupied North Vietnam, just like they occupied North Korea, China would take umbrage, just like they did in Korea, pushing the US literally into the ocean. . . . Only this time they have atomic weapons.

    Now those of you who say that the Vietnamese would never have let the Chinese in are innumerate. Don’t make me laugh. Korea did not have to “ask” the Chinese in. You get close to their borders, and they will push you back, come hell or high water. Besides which, our owners did not know that the Vietnamese communists did not like the Chinese communists at the time. They could not conceive of it. No. What they could conceive is history. Crossing the DMZ in Korea = crossing the DMZ in Vietnam = a million Chinese at your throats

    This is perfectly obvious and accepted fact. Proven by the fact that the US never crossed the border.

    I can’t wait to hear you convoluted excuses to explain that little anomaly.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  103. Mike P says:
    @EliteCommInc.

    The North Vietnamese came to the table because this was required for the Americans to get over themselves and then out of Vietnam.

    On the same terms – sign a phoney “peace treaty” simply to see America to the door – you probably also can get the Taliban to “negotiate.” Will that mean that you will have won that war, too? You’re fooling nobody but yourself.

  104. Btw, this website is anti-war. So what are all you warmongers doing on it?

    I know why. Veterans are always coming up with new casuistries to justify their horrible crimes.

    • Replies: @anarchyst
  105. @EliteCommInc.

    You’re kind of illiterate. Writing some incomprehensible gobbledegook and trying to pass it off as English does not help your case.

    • Replies: @Anon
    , @EliteCommInc.
  106. Rich says:
    @Mike P

    Both sides knew the agreement was a charade? Where in the hell did you get that idea? Nixon was still in office and the North Vietnamese were being bombed into oblivion. The North had no choice but to crawl up to the negotiating table and take what the US offered, which were actually very generous terms considering the North was broken. Unless the North Vietnamese had a crystal ball and knew the left would be able to remove Nixon and elect a leftist Congress, they had no way of knowing the US wasn’t going to honor its treaty obligations to the South.

    It’s funny how clowns run around talking about a war they know nothing about. Spend a little time researching the topic before you spout out nonsense.

    • Replies: @Jesse James
  107. @Rich

    The South Viet government blinked, not the North. The US bombed from the air, because that is how it fights wars being unable to field a large ground army needed to fight in such land wars. The US also lost 8,000 aircraft over Vietnam. Nixon was looking for a way out of the morass in 1972. The US Congress could not defy the American Public in 1972 as they do now. You must be a diehard Neo-liberal.

  108. @Jesse James

    What’s that got to do with neo-liberalism?

    • Replies: @Jesse James
  109. @obwandiyag

    It’s an argument with some merit but it wasn’t just the crossing of the 38th parallel which brought the Chinese in but the prospect of North Korea being conquered and occupied. Consider an alternative explanation; that the occupation of say the southern third of North Vietnam was not going to be much help because of the Viet Cong in the rearcsupplied by the Ho Chi Minh Trail.

  110. Anon[200] • Disclaimer says:
    @obwandiyag

    It is you that have the problem. His argument may not be correct but he’s at least as clear as you in expressing himself.

    • Replies: @EliteCommInc.
    , @obwandiyag
  111. @Wizard of Oz

    The inability to look at the accepted historical or scientific record and deny the existence of evidence to the contrary is an American neo-liberal pastime.

  112. Art says:
    @Art

    TRUTH. The generals knew that they could not win – but they would not quit – they went on and on, year after year, killing and slaughtering Americans and Vietnamese.

    Some things never change – the current day generals will not leave Afghanistan.

    It is 17 years and Gen Mattis will NOT quit – the Taliban will never go away – just like in Vietnam – it is their country.

    Good god – come to some accommodation with the Taliban – and leave!

    Think Peace — Art

    p.s. Mattis said, in 30 days he will do a ceasefire in Yemen. That means he will stop bombing and starving the poor Yemenis in 30 days – why not know! (Yemen is the poorest nation on the Earth and we are bombing it.)

    p.s. What a nice guy – truly the J-MIC US Security State is generous and exceptional.

  113. @obwandiyag

    I am unclear what you don’t understand.

    That nations create buffer zones and use other countries as part of that strategy or simply you don’t a grasp of basic strategic thinking.

    it’s not a new concept or very difficult to understand. Think cold war strategy — There what is referred to as the iron curtain — you don’t think that was on the borders of the Soviet Union — no it extended outward.

    Defending S. Vietnam was part of larger strategy — to confront a perceived communist threat. Now I certainly grant that what makes the US secure are two oceans. However, that does not mean one would not desire to have buffers as part of a larger strategy

    Korea, Japan, Thailand . . .

    My position as to Vietnam is based soley on events. What happened is what happened. Now I have no solutions for people so brain washed by the rhetoric that they cannot see events for what they are. The US position in Vietnam was soley defensive. We had no designs on N. Vietnam. We did not invade Vietnam. Had n Vietnam never attacked the South — in all likelihood the mess the communist made of the North would have collapsed to capital markets much sooner or they would be languishing, no longer propped up Chinese and Soviet funds – with repeated purges to cure the system.

    It’s really not hard.

    I responded to a comment that claimed traveling 6,000 miles did not make the US safer. To the extent that we saw communism as a threat — defending democracies made perfect sense. Whether said democracy was 3000 miles away in Europe or 6000 miles away in asia. And to highlight the point I referenced several Soviet supported states — not on Soviet Borders.

    • Replies: @bluedog
    , @Sergey Krieger
  114. @Anon

    My response is not only correct, it is spot on.

  115. @Jesse James

    Miles and mountains have been written and documented concerning the Vietnam conflict and still people make peculiar arguments. The South did not blink. If anything they gave the US grief over the agreement. They stated in no uncertain terms — they cannot trusted. Pres Nixon gave them assurances that should they violate the agreement the US would be there.

    In fact, people use S. Vietnamese concerns/objections to bolster their “sham” argument. Why I am not the least bit surprised that as usual liberals are all over the place grasping at anything regardless how contradictory it is to make their case.

    South Vietnam did not blink. Not until 1975 when N. Vietnam supported by the Chinese, N. Koreans and the Soviet Union launched a second war, knowing that the US would not return, for reasons previously stated.

    I am not sure if you are aware of this, but in war opponents lose aircraft, weapons, weapons systems, supplies of ll kinds and I have even heard a rumor that men die by the thousands — but maybe it’s a secret.

    Good grief in the civil war both sides would lose ten thousand men in a single battle. War is a nasty, filthy affair best avoided — however when we do — there is pain suffering and one might lose an aircraft or two.

    I am sure you mean “neocon” and nothing about Vietnam reflects the democracy creation scenarios that are part of global dominance gambit in play today.

  116. TomC says:

    All American wars (except the Civil War) have been fought with the odds overwhelmingly in favor of the Americans. In the history of armed combat such affairs as the Mexican and Spanish-American Wars must be ranked, not as wars at all, but as organized assassinations. In the two World Wars, no American faced a bullet until his adversaries had been worn down by years of fighting others.
    H. L. Mencken

  117. Well,

    I won’t dispute that military historians as most of the country have been brow beaten to decry Vietnam and bemoan it as it as a loss. However, for those of us, all ten of us who have declined to beat down and like to see the events for what they were as opposed to the whine fest we saw during the 1960′s and 1970′s — because they wanted to avoid the draft, the story is quite different based on events. It is one of the politically correct formats that no historian who wants a job in DC, in education perhaps anywhere — dare to challenge the popular view of Vietnam for something more factual — I get it – they have families to feed or women to date and no self respecting feminist would be caught dead with anyone yanking the politically correct forbidden fruit from the proverbial tree of good and evil.

    I have no issues taking an axe not only to the fruit, but the entire tree. Having already been tossed out of the garden – no issue for me. Every branch of service has been beaten into submission.

    First, the objective in Vietnam was never to own North Vietnam. It was to defend the South’s right to determine for themselves their destiny. Even incursions into the North by air or land and even waterways was merely to bolster the defense. So you complaint about not crossing boundaries to invade is moot. That straw won’t be beat. Your argument is someone not intending to do something — didn’t do it, therefore they lose — you seem to think that makes sense and supports your peculiar line of logic. Again – the north Vietnamese were the invaders —

    The US occupied S. Vietnam as per request by the S. Vietnamese government.

    Second, it’s a clear indicator that you don’t have an argument when it consists of everything -m including the kitchen sink. Your argument about whether the US has fought a war to win ignores a lot of history, but more importantly, winning is defined by the objective you task and your actions/presence in doing so. The record is pretty clear that eventually the US pressed the matter aggressively enough to force the North to capitulate to an agreement — the same agreement that had been offered since US involvement — not a single shift — by the US – N. Vietnam loses, they sign.

    I don’t know about you, but I live in the US and while I might agree that our leadership is abusing its powers — ownership just does not come into play. Most blacks may be trapped on the democratic and liberal plantation by default, but I don’t view them as owned either. As evidence, I point to the misguided and got it all backwards war protesters, who made enough noise to prevent the massacre of million of S. Vietnamese at the hands of those peace loving Northern fellow country men and women. Gave peace a chance — and the North rejected it. So much for John Lennon and company.

    Just because the strategy was to avoid a wider conflict — does not in any way indicate a loss. Just a strategic decision.

    Third, you other kitchen sink suggestion that WWII was a scam — lacks just a couple of components — evidence. The US public made it very clear they were not interested in racing off to war in Europe again — until Pear Harbor, most US citizens were content send supplies and stay abreast of the news. That despite German U-boats engaging merchant ships off the US coastline. What evidence there is suggests that the US public wasn’t owned by anyone — maybe even less so then (if that’s possible) than now.

    you are not addressing someone who is afraid to admit when the US lost as noted:

    1812 (though some dispute it) Britain, just didn’t want the place – preoccupied elsewhere

    Iraq — while clearly we had a run of the country. It fell apart during our occupation clearly counter to the objectives — it fell apart in every way — that’s a loss.

    Afghanistan as well, it has splintered during our time in control with a goal of steering the entire country to democracy — tall order, likely to fail.

    -When Vietnam finally collapsed in 1975 — the US was not present and we cannot be credited with that failure. In fact, S. Vietnam had twice beaten back the North’s attempts and did so very handily the second time without US aide. And that provided support that they could in fact defend themselves. But the assistance provided by her allies: N. Korea, China, and the Soviet union eventually proved too much.

    Note: Australia had also departed the effort. But were loyal allies in that fight for quite some time.

  118. I served under Johnson in the mid 60′s. I thought I was a U.S. soldier serving my country. I now know that I was an element in one of Imperial Washington’s foreign legions.

    The Vietnam War was a manifestation of evil. An interminable horror show presenting as farce. It was a cluster fuck. A common phrase among the regulars was “it don’t mean nothing”.

    I also understand, with hind sight, that mine was a conscript army. We were the working class in service to the ruling class. I wasn’t brought up to think that way. That’s how our enemy was thinking.

    Nothing has changed.

    Thank you for your labor in defense of the actual record of these events.

  119. @ RICH,

    You might want to disabuse yourself of your belief that Nixon’s bombing card caused anyone to “come crawling” back to the negotiations because it is simply not true.

    North Vietnam had already survived having 7,662,000 tons of ordnance (triple the total WW2 tonnage) dropped on them and these last relatively superficial attempts arguably demoralized the Americans more than anyone else.

    They knew that the US had blinked, they knew the public pressures in America were peaking and they also knew that there was a political plum awaiting a president who could exit under a slogan such as “peace with honour”.

    I have read LBJ’s White House Tapes, Nixons full White House transcript and a couple of heavily sourced Nixon/Kissinger books with special attention to their frustrations with the North Vietnamese and am in no doubt that they knew that they held very weak cards in Paris.

    That the entire Vietnamese situation would unfold as it did two years later was no surprise to anyone at the table. Le Duc Tho declining the Nobel peace prize was surely a hint to even the lowest brow. Ditto with Kissinger having the Ambassador to Norway accept his.

    As a side note, during these negotiations it was fascinating to read how Le Duc Tho, of no formal education past French elementary completely out maneuvered and in effect humiliated the hyper smart Ivy League genius Henry( power is the ultimate aphrodisiac) Kissinger.

    Of course having a full house and knowing your opponent has a busted flush makes it easier. In the end endurance (willingness to accept punishment) triumphs over firepower and body counts.

    Cheers-

    • Replies: @EliteCommInc.
    , @Rich
  120. @Ilyana_Rozumova

    ” German generals did not know that there are no roads in Russia ”
    See the extensive map material in
    Erich Ludendorff, ‘Meine Kriegserinnerungen 1914 = 1918′, Berlin, 1918

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
  121. @Timur The Lame

    Well, in all my years discussing this subject the only contention has been the “bizzarre” argument that the US lost because they never invaded in force North Vietnam. Something i agree we should have done and smashed Hanoi and destroyed every last Vietcong that resisted or made hay.

    But as the goal was not to own N. Vietnam, it’s a fairly worthless contention. Right up there with war is bad because war is bad.

    Then you know exactly what Pres. Johnson’s thoughts were regarding his escalation of troops.

    And the utter genuine confusion over the Navy’s time line and content regarding the Gulf of Tonkin incident.

    “As a side note, during these negotiations it was fascinating to read how Le Duc Tho, of no formal education past French elementary completely out maneuvered and in effect humiliated the hyper smart Ivy League genius Henry ( power is the ultimate aphrodisiac) Kissinger.”

    Then you understand the face saving that Vietnamese engage in to put lipstick on pigs. They have been contending how they outsmarted the US since Vietnam ended. Tell that to the Chinese and the Soviets, who strongly suggested they throw in the towel.

    But researchers digging into the Vietnam archives, what few they have been access to tell a very different story. If we are going to ignore details here’s hat trick. Vietnam having ravaged their country via communist purges to clear the slate for a new Vietnam is desperately concerned about China’s growth — is now clamoring for capital markets and trade deals with the US — in the end, Vietnam looses once again crawling to the table for the capitalism they fought so hard to reject. Relativism can be a two way street.

    I would be glad to hear about Vietnamese elementary French speaking wisdom and maneuvering the those intellectual elites, right to the first trade deal built on free markets.

    Capitalism vs Communism 101.

    Note: no country suffered from US bombings more than Laos — an ally of the US. One of several states that the N. Vietnamese wantonly violated another’s sovereignty without permission.

  122. @jilles dykstra

    Ja right. And you have there also permissive loading of those roads.

  123. anarchyst says:
    @obwandiyag

    Your guilt is showing. I’ll bet you were an “anti-war” protester who still has difficulty coming to terms with your cowardice.

    • Replies: @Sparkon
  124. bluedog says:
    @EliteCommInc.

    Lol anyone who would have called the government in Nam a democracy is a raving idiot,we spent blood and broke the treasury (as Nixon said when he ask Japan to fund our bases there saying “we are broke” and the division in the public that still has yet to heal.But yet we have the idiots who cry WE WON like it was some high school football team,and now you know why America is in the shape its in with trillions in debt a divided population and a dim future…

    • Replies: @EliteCommInc.
  125. Sparkon says:
    @anarchyst

    Your guilt is showing. I’ll bet you were an “anti-war” protester who still has difficulty coming to terms with your cowardice.

    What about those of us who served honorably during those years, and also became anti-war protesters with a DD 214 when our tour of duty was over?

    Got any simplistic slogans for that?

    Let me take the occasion to ask what you did in early 2003, when Pres. George W. Bush and his cronies were compiling a list of false accusations against Saddam Hussein, and threatening him with invasion of his sovereign nation?

    Did you find the courage then to join millions worldwide who took to the streets to protest the impending illegal invasion?

    Or do you think they were all cowards too?

  126. @ EliteCommInc,

    I am not quite sure of the point you are putting across but will comment on some possible misconceptions you may have had. I did not resort to reading Vietnamese newspapers post Paris Peace Talks to get some ‘lipstick” but I did read the texts of the negotiations and more importantly the “private’ conversations between Nixon and Kissinger before, during and after the negotiations. Lots of coffee cups flying around.

    Your contention that Peking and Moscow strongly suggested to Vietnam to “throw in the towel” would be most politely called unhistorical with a smattering of ahistorical. As you might recall Nixon did two firsts in 1972, his visit to China as President in February followed by being the first US President to visit Moscow for a summit in May. The major objective of these visits (not admitted as such) was to request their respective hosts to pressure Vietnam to conclude a treaty. In what might normally require a carrot and stick approach it essentially was a carrot and carrot approach because they had no sticks. Their hosts nodded politely and that was that. I can’t for the life of me see any upside for either Peking or Moscow to get their hands dirty by prying the Vietnamese tar-baby out of Uncle Sam’s hands. It was destroying him domestically, internationally and financially.

    I come to my understanding of history because I don’t read between the lines, I read ON the lines whenever possible. I don’t need some incestuous Harvard flunkie who has a publisher’s contract and gets boilerplate reviews as being “brilliant” or “incisive” to do my thinking for me.

    Of course that puts me often against conventionally accepted wisdom. I’m comfortable in that neighborhood.

    Cheers-

  127. @EliteCommInc.

    So your buffer zone is on Russian borders? What makes you willing to build buffer zones so far from own borders when ocean provide clear buffer zone that is far better and cheaper too? Also what justification for the c look untry that has never suffered foreign invasion to aggressively push towards other countries borders ? I suspect racket. But you should realise that USA is slowly swirling down the drain and when stuff hits the fan I am pretty sure other countries will create buffer zones ri GB ht on USA bord et s. I will also add that once USA loses status and ppl ower the rest of the world will start returning favors to USA with huge interest. You richly deserve it.

    • Replies: @EliteCommInc.
  128. anarchyst says:
    @Sparkon

    I had no use for either Bush or any of the wars that he pushed.
    In fact, you will find that most of us who served in a combat zone have no use for ANY wars.

  129. Rich says:
    @Timur The Lame

    Survived? Yes, like worms under ground, afraid to look at the sun. No matter how you try twist it, bury it or forget it, the US bombing campaign forced the communist worms to crawl to the negotiating table and sign a treaty where they agreed to recognize the integrity of their border with the South. Until Nixon threw the kitchen sink at them they had been unwilling to do that. That the Americans were gracious and let the worms save a little face shows how complete the victory was. Unfortunately, the leftists who took over the US government in ’74 abandoned their ally, otherwise South Vietnam would have ended up more like South Korea. Shame.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    , @Jesse James
  130. @Anon

    So you too are an illiterate. You can’t tell English from fractured babble. Take an English class.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  131. @Sergey Krieger

    I am not sure why you are making the practice of placing anything between one’s potential foes and yourself a buffer —–

    I am not an advocate for NATO’s expansion — however, I have no doubt that Europeans would note such a buffer demarcation line would be a good start.

    The purpose of allies is that they provide their own defense, primarily in the case of Europe, And asia with no small help from the US.

    The US has been invaded twice: Great Britain and Mexico. However, I understand your intent. Suffice it to say, we are no longer challenging “buffers” in their various configurations — but the value or moral implications of the same.

    That is a different discussion. In the case of Russia, the argument is that such expanse is intended to curb Russian aggression.

    The consequences of our current military posturing is also a different discussion.

  132. @bluedog

    If you are contending that the government was akin to something reflecting the west — that would be incorrect. Trying to fit any democracy configuration into the mold of the liberal imagination is impossible.

    Corruption is often the frame. I can’t resolve corruption from government, not Vietnam’s nor that of the US. Nor does that corruption deny democratic status or nor democratic state would qualify. I could not defend that the democracy in question was without issue.

    Suppose they were openly a dictatorship — they remain in the US camp as opponents of communism. It’s fun to pretend that The Russians had not threatened the US or that china was benign.

    Some 60,000 men lost their lives S. Vietnam lost over a million as i recall — it was not a high school football .

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
    , @bluedog
  133. @ Rich,

    Well I suppose you are entitled to your opinions but that entitlement does not extend to facts. You appear to be very patriotic but with an especial sore point about the Vietnam conflict as in losing it so you reach out for all the ill thought out straws that inevitably end with “glass parking lot” or “back to the stone age”.

    In the interests of honest discussion I want to raise a few points starting with your insistence that Nixon bludgeoned the Vietnamese back to the table.

    Why would less than 1% of total ordnance dropped all of a sudden make them “crawl like worms”? It would seem to me that if they had endured 7 million tons of bombs surely several thousand tons would not force any issue.

    Now I assume that you don’t appreciate facts that don’t support your set in cement views but did you know that Kissinger capitulated on the terms near the end and conceded that 150.000 Viet Cong can remain in South Vietnam? Hows that for recognizing the integrity of the border?

    Did you know that fart catcher Thieu publicly berated the US terms as “tantamount to surrender”?

    Did you know that the last US combat troops left on August 1972?

    Did you know that the Paris Peace Accords were only signed 5 months later?

    Now if you can spin this as a “complete” US victory with a dominating hand at the negotiations then make your beer chaser a double because reality is an ugly mistress when provoked.

    By the way you might be interested to know that as per documented transcripts Nixon and Kissinger would not agree with you any more than I do. And they weren’t liberals like Gerald Ford (according to you).

    Cheers-

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
    , @Rich
  134. @EliteCommInc.

    You keep walking on the clouds.
    It was Russian heat seeking missiles supplied to North Vietnam that severely curtailed US bombing missions
    It was US military offensive that hit the snag.
    It was US initiative by Kissinger to negotiate, and ending the war.
    Anything else is just plain stupidity.

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  135. Anonymous[436] • Disclaimer says:
    @obwandiyag

    So who are you trolling for?

    The “Einstein Was An African Movement”?

  136. @Ilyana_Rozumova

    While I came to accept as the best opinion the late Jerry Pournelle’s view that the war was only lost in the end by the Democrat controlled Congress denying the South Vietnamese air support it does seem reasonable to argue, even without access to Vietnamese records, that the North Vietnamese would have understood US politics well enough to do whatever it took to stay in the war. No ally can ever sensibly rely on the US if it has a choice. Winning elections at home will always be critical.

  137. @Timur The Lame

    In early 1974 (from memory) I heard Australiia’s next PM, then former Minister for the Army, say that the South Vietnamese had been betrayed. But…. as to that concession about 150,000 Viet Cong being allowed to stay in the South, weren’t the Viet Cong South Vietnamese? How were the North Vietnamese to extract them, and where to?

  138. @Rich

    Sure the US abandoned its ally/client but what makes you think that North Vietnam, backed in different ways by Russia and China, didn’t understand US politics well enough to believe that they only had to stay in the game to have a very good chance of ultimate victory? So where’s the victory or defeat there? Are you suggesting they were totally astonished at the speed with which American politics provedthem right about staying in the game?

    • Replies: @Rich
  139. @Timur The Lame

    Where are you against conventional wisdom there?

  140. @Sparkon

    Just nit picking… but what’s courageous about “joining millions worldwide…”?

    • Replies: @Sparkon
  141. @anarchyst

    What you say about McCain revealing radio and radar frequencies and flight plans intrigues me. What would he know about any such things and when would/could he have passed on anything useful to his captors (especially as they would have suspected he was trying to mislead them)?

    Really? A pilot knows about radar frequencies? Why?

    Radio frequencies? No, if you just give up on those super futuristic digital systems you have invented before us and do a bit of analogue dial twisting you will find our pilots talking to each other loud and clear. Yeah, yeah.

    Oh, and did I forget to tell you about flight plans? Just add a better brand of oatmeal for my breakfast and I’ll tell you all I can remember of the flights I’ve made in the last three years… Sorry I can’t help with those damned B52s. You’ll just have to get your Russki friends to fire some missiles.

    Your apparent standards of evidence and sources (supra) don’t add weight to your opinions.

    • Replies: @anarchyst
  142. @EliteCommInc.

    I haven’t looked into the applicable international law, if any, about the legality of the having troops in South Vietnam to help fight in its civil war. (Have you?). But I would very much like help in thinking through the implications of the South Vietnamese government, with US support, refusing to go ahead with the nationwide democratic election as is often alleged in that probably greatly over simplified form.

    • Agree: bluedog
    • Replies: @EliteCommInc.
  143. @Rich

    The winning side does not get counted as it leaves a county to return across the Pacific. The winners remain.

  144. Rich says:
    @Timur The Lame

    There are actually two different threads going on at Unz about the Vietnam War, in the one under Fred Reed’s column I rebut most of your claims, but some of the other intelligent fellows on this thread have done a good job of debunking the neo-Marxist historicalism that you and your ilk spout.

    1. The North Vietnamese were living underground before Operation Linebacker, but after that particular campaign, they realized, even with their little worm brains, they had no choice but to come begging for peace. Since the US had no designs on conquering the North, generous terms were negotiated and the backstabbing, lying communists quickly accepted them.
    2. The isolated North Vietnamese still in the South were not a problem, or wouldn’t have been if the US had honored its treaty obligations.
    3. The fact that US combat troops left in ’72 is a major part of my thesis that the US military didn’t lose the war. Again, read the comment section under Reed’s recent column.
    4. Ford was a moderate, but in ’74 the leftists took overwhelming control of the US Congress. They had a huge 291-144 majority in the House and a 60-38 majority in the Senate, along with Harry Byrd, elected as an Independent, who caucused with the Dems.

  145. bluedog says:
    @EliteCommInc.

    Indeed they did what’s the gain the death of a sitting president his brother and countless others in the cover up,a country that sank into a pit of shit that they never found a way to overcome to this day,enjoy the victory that you claim we got ,but as the American mother said “I sent you a good boy you sent back a killer”.Ah the sickness in America….

  146. Rich says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    The North Vietnamese knew they had most of the media and a large portion of the democrat party on their side, but I don’t think anyone could have foreseen the madness of the coup that removed Nixon.

    Of course, in the end, the North did defeat the South, their allies didn’t abandon them like the US abandoned its ally.

  147. Artie says:

    Corpulent generals safe behind lines
    History’s lessons drowned in red wine
    Poppies for young men, death’s bitter trade
    All of those young lives betrayed
    All for a Children’s Crusade

    Midnight in Soho, Nineteen Eighty-four
    Fixing in doorways, opium slaves
    Poppies for young men, such bitter trade
    All of those young lives betrayed
    All for a Children’s Crusade

    Children’s Crusade

    By Sting

  148. aNON[695] • Disclaimer says:

    BUT YOU AND I, WE’VE BEEN THROUGH THAT

    AND THIS IS NOT OUR FATE

  149. Anon[695] • Disclaimer says:

    Sibel Edmonds
    December 21, 2009

    Another Sorry Episode in American History: Agent Orange

    Cycles of atrocities, Cycles of Shame & Regret, and Cycles of more atrocities

    ”We spend billions per week on undeclared wars to injure, kill, and destroy. We spend hundreds of millions of dollars on fraudulent and wasteful defense contracts. We spend billions on drones and bombs which kill 687 civilians per 14 enemy targets, amounting to a ratio of nearly 50 civilians killed for each undeclared enemy killed.”

    https://www.newsbud.com/2009/12/21/another-sorry-episode-in-american-history-agent-orange/

  150. Erebus says:
    @Sparkon

    Or do you think they were all cowards too?

    Many called Muhammed Ali a coward for his refusal. Of course, none would’ve faced a mass of critics, much less dared to step into a ring with George Foreman or Joe Frazier as resolutely as Ali did both.

    • Replies: @anon
  151. Anon[436] • Disclaimer says:
    @Justsaying

    But the “aggressor” was the “vanquished” so please untie the knot you have lodged in this humble reader’s brain. Runaway rhetoric perhaps ? But is there some hidden truth there at all?

  152. @Timur The Lame

    excuse the delay,

    I was once again behind enemy lines today — on a college campus.

    But I also wanted to review my own record on the issue of the Sec Kissinger and Pres Nixon exchanges on the issue of Vietnam. And the record is not really anything new. Pres Nixon was elected to disengage from Vietnam. And he did so. He also made it clear that he would not abandon Vietnam. There is no question of the tenuous state of of the Vietnamese alone. And what might happen should the US withdraw..

    We simply don’t know what of the US response based on Prs Nixon’s assurances, because he was no longer in office. But Pres. Nixon’s views after his tenure remained as I recall, were that Vietnam was a success, up until 1075. They could and did defend themselves effectively.

    Now you later admonitions about the borders. hardly much hay here. In order to maintain the peace, we did press the Vietnamese to give up territory —

    So much for US aggression.

    And while anti-Vietnam advocates make the claims about how that indicates a loss or some level of disingenuous — ceding x miles of land in exchange for peace is hardly new. But nothing on the ground was to the press against defending S. Vietnam. It was the pressure at home at home. And no one including me is going to deny that those pressures were intense, despite successes and the overall success of the mission.

    While the US should fulfilled the commitment to S. Vietnam, The choice by the Ford admin. and Congress does not change that success. Every agreement demands the trustworthiness of the parties involved to abide by it. And Pres. Nixon had no reason to expect the same of N. Vietnam.

    And no amount humble face saving polity should be used to gloss over the fact that the North Vietnamese are abject liars and untrustworthy based on just the kind bland — “we made an agreement, but didn’t mean it” ethos used by them or their advocates. The South Vietneme were correct and we were wrong .

  153. @Wizard of Oz

    It was not a civil war. Unfortunately for North Vietnam, South Vietnam was an acknowledged legal state, and in agreement with the North — a demarcation line established recognizing the borders.

    That the South and the North had a functioning governments administering both states is sufficient.

    Given the constant incursion by the North Vietnamese and the Vietcong, the acts of terror in rural countryside and bombings in the cities – having elections would have been contended as unfair based on intimidation. Furthermore, In the end it was the choice of the governing body of S. Vietnam. The election issue in my view is oft cited to bolster the contention that Vietnam was a US puppet. It’s nonsense. Had South Vietnam been a puppet out efforts their would have gone more smoothly, to our liking.

    • Agree: anarchyst
  154. As for agent orange

    war is a nasty filthy affair best not engaged. But when it is — there are no sure to be horrific consequences as the opponents seek every advantage to resolve the matter in their favor.

    And it is the horrors of war that anti-Vietnam advocates make their case — unfortunately for them — noting the tragic consequences of war is nonunique

    as war is always tragic regardless of time and space in which it is engaged. One must steel themselves — Internally, I give a painful assent and shrug — such is war.

    • Replies: @Ilyana_Rozumova
  155. @EliteCommInc.

    Did you see the movie Path to war (2002)? If not than rent it and see it.
    If you did see it than I do have serious doubt your integrity.

  156. Sparkon says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    what’s courageous about “joining millions worldwide…”?

    For your answer, do the math.

    According to the French academic Dominique Reynié between … 3 January and 12 April 2003, 36 million people across the globe took part in almost 3,000 anti‑war protests,

    Image: Common Dreams

    36 million people participated in anti-war protests (over 3 months) out of a total world population of 6.44 billion in 2003, or just 1 person protesting for every 179 people worldwide.

    Fewer than 1% were anti-war protesters in 2003.

    Meanwhile, 99 & 44/100% swallowed the lies, sat on their duffs, and did nothing. Now we all reap the bitter harvest of seemingly endless wars in the Middle East.

    So yes, the anti-war protesters were a distinct minority who took to the streets in peaceful demonstrations against the impending illegal invasion of Iraq in early 2003, and yes, I do think that took at least some courage, not only to step up and speak truth to power, but also to defy and counter the relentless and hysterical propaganda blaring forth then in hurricanes of hot air from the mainstream media, all of it demonizing Saddam Hussein and the fictitious mobile biological labs he rode in on.

    In my town of 44,000, about 2,000 demonstrated on Feb. 15, 2003, or less than 5%.

    From my perspective — and in my experience — that took courage, but then, I rode in on a high horse, while you rode in on a nit.

    • Replies: @anon
  157. anarchyst says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    Your adulation for John McCain is sickening.
    John McCain received preferential treatment even before his captors knew that he was the son of a Navy Admiral. He earned the nickname “songbird” while in captivity, “ratting out” the attempts to communicate by other prisoners.
    McCain improperly ejected from his aircraft, resulting in two broken arms. When he was captured he immediately asked for medical assistance which was provided promptly, unlike the situation for most Americans who were captured.
    After finding out about McCain’s identity, the North wanted to release him right away, but he refused. His refusal was not altruistic at all, but was to save himself from prosecution, which would have resulted in him being court-martialed for treason “singing”-supplying frequencies, flight plans, and other classified information to his captors. McCain made “anti-war radio broadcasts for his captors, encouraging Americans to refuse to fight. Just recently, his broadcasts have been declassified. He HAD to stay in order to avoid prosecution.
    Looking back through McCain’s “colorful” history, he was a total fvckup who graduated near the bottom of his class at Annapolis, did a “hot start” stunt on the USS Forrestal which resulted in the deaths of his fellow sailors, which resulted in him being spirited off the ship to avoid retribution from his fellow sailors. He was awarded a command position ahead of those who were more qualified due to his “connections”. His nickname “maverick” was given to him for his constant failure to follow procedures. You see, his Admiral “daddy” got him out of almost all of his scrapes.
    His political career was no better, capitalizing on his POW status for political advantage. He dumped his first wife, who was ill and waited for him throughout his captivity, for another “younger model”.
    He was embroiled in the “Keating Five” savings and loan scandal, but escaped nearly “scott-free” because of his POW status.
    In later years, McCain ran on the Republican ticket, but always undermining his own party, voting with the Democrats.
    John McCain and John Kerry pushed through legislation which outlawed the investigation of POWs left behind after the Vietnam war, despite there being verifiable live sightings. He wanted the trade agreement with Vietnam to be implemented without a hitch.
    It is interesting to note that Admiral John S. McCain was instrumental in covering up the deliberate “act of war” committed by Israel with the attack on the USS Liberty (GTR-5) on June 8, 1967.
    Just maybe “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree”.

    • Replies: @anon
  158. @Ilyana_Rozumova

    my dear woman, I can only repeat what i have previously stated. Maybe a film quotation will be of help,

    “War is hell” William Tecumseh Sherman.

    “In marriage, as in war, it is permitted to take every advantage of the enemy.” Oscar Wilde

    “A great war leaves the country with three armies – an army of cripples, an army of mourners, and an army of thieves” German Proverb

    “No event in American history is more misunderstood than the Vietnam War. It was misreported then, and it is misremembered now.” Pres.Richard M Nixon

  159. I should add “comprehension” to your problems I noted in my last sentence.

    I read your first sentence and was totally baffled. Where did you find in what I wrote any “adulation” of John McCain.

    (I have read what Ron Unz has published about McCain and know nothing to contradict it).

    But maybe I missed the point. Was your effusion really a long winded way of admitting you had been caught out in BS without a comeback?

    • Replies: @anarchyst
  160. anarchyst says:
    @Wizard of Oz

    Your adulation for McCain is evident. Look up the McCain story for yourself. I’m not going to do your homework for you…
    McCain was a scumbag of the first order. I feel sorry for the cancer that sent him to the next realm…

    • Replies: @Wizard of Oz
  161. @Ilyana_Rozumova

    ok. more than one . . . .

    No I am not familiar with that film.

  162. Anonymous[874] • Disclaimer says:

    Secretary of Defense McNAmara’s memo reveals the truth behind the Vietnam War

    https://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments/frus1964-68v03/d189

    To this day the US is still trying to wage containment games against China and Russia. The good news is that it’s going to fail because these two are no ordinary powers.

  163. @anarchyst

    No, my disrespect for the way you use your intellect is evident. Maybe I should just disrespect the quality of your intellect.

  164. Yee says:

    “To this day the US is still trying to wage containment games against China and Russia.”

    The US probably picked the wrong game to play, at least with China. Because Chinese learn how to play the “containment games” since childhood.

    Weiqi (围棋) literally means containment game. LOL…

  165. anon[311] • Disclaimer says:
    @Nawi

    interesting link, thanks for that

    wikipedia, which seems leftist generally claims this:

    16,000 Philipine troops dead

    Filipino civilians: 250,000–1,000,000 died, largely because of famine and disease; including 200,000 dead from cholera.

    terrible regardless

  166. anon[311] • Disclaimer says:
    @anarchyst

    Looking back through McCain’s “colorful” history, he was a total fvckup who graduated near the bottom of his class at Annapolis, did a “hot start” stunt on the USS Forrestal which resulted in the deaths of his fellow sailors, which resulted in him being spirited off the ship to avoid retribution from his fellow sailors.

    for some reason, this is all wikipedia says:

    On July 29, 1967, McCain was a lieutenant commander when he was near the center of the USS Forrestal fire. He escaped from his burning jet and was trying to help another pilot escape when a bomb exploded;[29] McCain was struck in the legs and chest by fragments.[30] The ensuing fire killed 134 sailors and took 24 hours to control.[31][32]

    they almost make him sound like a victim but why was he “near the center”?

    • Replies: @anarchyst
    , @S
  167. anon[311] • Disclaimer says:
    @Sparkon

    Fewer than 1% were anti-war protesters in 2003.

    Meanwhile, 99 & 44/100% swallowed the lies, sat on their duffs, and did nothing. Now we all reap the bitter harvest of seemingly endless wars in the Middle East.

    and they all went away once obozo got elected

    odd how that works

  168. anon[311] • Disclaimer says:
    @Erebus

    Ali was a racist

    he apparently considered himself superior to Joe Frazier because Frazier had darker skin

  169. anarchyst says:
    @anon

    McCain did a “wet start” as a stunt. A “wet start” involves dumping as much fuel into your engine without ignition, waiting for the fuel to pool within the engine, and then activating the ignition. When done “properly”, a large flame exits out the back of the engine, startling bystanders. “Wet starts” are never a joke and are dangerous. McCain’s “daddy” admiral covered up the incident. Crew members on the USS Forrestal say otherwise. McCain was spirited off the aircraft carrier within hours, to avoid retribution from the crew. Don’t forget, this is the same admiral McCain that covered up the deliberate “act of war” committed by Israel on the USS Liberty (GTR-5). Like father like son…
    Wikipedia is incomplete on the USS Forrestal incident and relied on the “official” (cover-up) report…

  170. S says:
    @anon

    The Forrestal at the time had a newly installed video camera system for post flight analysis of take offs and landings.

    So, the entire event from start to finish, including McCain and his actions regarding his jet, is on video. Youtube should have it.

    It includes the particularly tragic part where the fire control teams have rushed towards the plane’s afire on deck, and an iron bomb exploded at point blank range as they did so.

    (Due to an ammunition shortage some of the bombs on the Forrestal were of pre WWII circa 1930′s manufacture -ie tend to be more unstable- which made the situation worse.)

    As anarchyst has said, short of the aircraft carrier itself sinking with all hands, it was a disaster of the first magnitude.

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