Thursday, August 30, 2007

The V-word, Democrats, and Losing

These guys have a nice start, but they miss the point.

Democrats can now be blamed for losing the war in Vietnam through Congress denying funding. No one has done so, and I don't expect anyone to do that. However, it is a pretty divisive (but true) parallel that the anti-war forces caused the Vietnam loss, not the military. The same is true for Iraq. That they used the Democrat Party as a front and a tool is historical and unfortunate. (But there never has been much of a Pacifist party - though one was started once, I believe...)

The military has succeeded even more effectively in Iraq than in Vietnam, once they had a plan and weren't hamstrung by arbitrary "rules-of-engagement". Our own body count seems to be a single-digit percentage of what it was in Vietnam and earlier wars - especially compared to what we have accomplished militarily.

The military didn't lose in Vietnam, only our own politicians did - by pulling the rug out.

However, you can look for parallels in Sun-Tzu's "Art of War" to see that this scene is already described, as well as realistic advice...

Pew Research Center: Along the Iraq-Vietnam Parallel: "In drawing an explicit comparison between the ongoing Iraq conflict and the Vietnam War in his recent speech before the Veterans of Foreign Wars -- a linkage he once sharply rejected, -- President George W. Bush might seem to be providing ammunition to his critics. To many observers the most obvious parallel between the two wars is that, after an initial period of public support, disillusionment mounted as the conflicts dragged on without apparent success. But while the overall trajectory of public opinion is strikingly similar, an important political difference distinguishes public attitudes toward the two wars. In this case, the president's steadfast commitment to the war he initiated continues to draw strong support from members of his own party."

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