Stirling From Italy, joined Jun 2004, 3943 posts, RR: 21 Posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 1417 times:
This is one of the best things I've yet to read on Iraq and the inevitable comparisons to Vietnam. It might be best to save comments until reading the full document. Iraq: Learning the Lessons of Vietnam
Melvin R. Laird
During Richard Nixon's first term as president, most U.S. forces were withdrawn from Vietnam while the South's ability to defend itself was improved. Speaking out for the first time in decades, Nixon's Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird — one of the architects of those policies — argues that this approach produced a success, at least until Congress snatched defeat from the jaws of victory by cutting off funding for the South in 1975. Washington should follow a similar strategy in Iraq today, he writes in this already much-discussed article, but this time it should finish the job properly.
Jetjack74 From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 7439 posts, RR: 50
Reply 1, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1384 times:
Quoting Stirling (Thread starter): This is one of the best things I've yet to read on Iraq and the inevitable comparisons to Vietnam. It might be best to save comments until reading the full document
The page doesn't work. There are no comparisons between Iraq and Vietnam, except the fact the same goons who were protesting the Vietnam War(plus they're offspring), are at it again in this one. The insurgency(which is a joke, they're not insurgents, they're terrorists), is not supported by the populus of Iraq, and we're not fighting a country, we're fighting an ideaology.
The article addresses the misconception bantered about that Iraq is just another Vietnam...not supporting the notion.
Now that the correct link is posted, please set aside some time to read the full piece.
But like Vietnam, can we afford to allow foreign policy to be shaped by an anti-war faction fueled by a biased media?
Remember, a Garden Growing in Baghdad is not News...Is Bad news really the only thing coming out of Iraq?
Well no wonder Americans feel the way they do...they only know what they're being told.
By the way, I am a Veteran of the United States Armed Forces...I find the concept of war abhorrent...
But if the US does not protect freedom? Who will?
Here's a snippet from the article: It is a very different story in Iraq, where the Bush administration hopes to implant democracy side by side with Islam. The stakes could not be higher for the continued existence of our own democracy and, yes, for the significant matter of oil. We are not the only nation dependent on Persian Gulf oil. We share that dependency with every industrialized nation on the planet. Picture those oil reserves in the hands of religious extremists whose idea of utopia is to knock the world economy and culture back more than a millennium to the dawn of Islam.
Bush's belief that he can replace repression with democracy is not some neoconservative fantasy. Our support of democracy dates from the founding of our nation. Democracies are simply better for the planet. Witness the courage of the Iraqi people who shocked the world and defied all the pessimists by showing up to vote in January 2005, even with guns pointed at their heads. The enemies of freedom in Iraq know what a powerful message that was to the rest of the Arab world, otherwise they would not have responded by escalating the violence.
Although Vietnam may have been a success story when it came to defeating an insurgency, the domestic insurgency -- conducted by the Vietcong -- was unfortunately only one front in the war, the larger front being the conventional military forces of North Vietnam. The Vietcong were largely suppressed by a combination of persuasion and force. A similar combination of deadly force against the Iraqi insurgency's leaders and incentives to co-opt their followers may work in Iraq, where the insurgency is the only enemy.
Just pray to whatever God, Spirit, or Shrub of your choosing; for a speedy end...this matter needs unity, not division.
We leave now...and watch the region sink into hell.
B744F From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1301 times:
Quoting Beefstew25 (Reply 3): Advise me of which areas we have colonized since WW2....
the colonialism or attempts to install puppet regimes to the following countries, almost all with violence, many with military dictators, some with Communist leaders. Be proud
The list goes on, and that is just the list of operations declassified under the freedom of information act
B744F From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1300 times:
Quoting Stirling (Reply 6): But if the US does not protect freedom? Who will?
That is such a broad comment with little historical backing. The US never entered WWII to protect freedom, they entered to protect their asses. Vietnam, freedom? The long list above? Definately not freedom. Iraq? not freedom, it was WMD, threat to the world, etc. When you fight for selfish reasons and the world knows it, don't be surprised when you hate so much hate directed at you, and untold number of people willing to go to extremes to target you
Stirling From Italy, joined Jun 2004, 3943 posts, RR: 21
Reply 10, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1247 times:
Quoting UAL777 (Reply 9): Im just going to refer you to the tin-hat thread.
With a lifetime membership I hope....
Quoting B744F (Reply 7): the colonialism or attempts to install puppet regimes to the following countries, almost all with violence, many with military dictators, some with Communist leaders. Be proud
That's a real nice list you got there....where did you find that?
The bottom line is this...no matter how one views the US form of government; good, bad, indifferent, or purple....one undeniable fact remains; no other country in the history of this planet has experienced a higher level of in-migration. In fact, no other nation comes close. WE are the world's beacon of freedom.
Why is this important?
Because most, if not all of the nations on that list have very high numbers of their former citizens living free in this nation....
Why is that?
Interesting position. But would not the wave of extreme religious fundamentalism be a form of colonialism as well? Albeit decentralized, but it is still in the business of nation building all the same...I don't think anyone in the US government has ever stated our position in Iraq is permanent.
So we should just sit back and watch freedom loving peoples succumb to such oppression? It is a serious question in wont of serious answer...I would like to know what the alternatives might be?
Stirling From Italy, joined Jun 2004, 3943 posts, RR: 21
Reply 12, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 1220 times:
You can't have $ without freedom.
But that is only recent...our founding fathers fled their homelands for freedom of worship.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to earn a decent living...feeding your family...yourself...living without fear of the police coming to your house in the middle of the night and taking everyone away on trumped up charges of crimes against the state.
I spoke to a Cambodian family a few weeks ago...about why they came to this country...$ had nothing to do with it....more so the fact that this ladies 3 brothers disappeared one night never to be seen again, and that 12 of them lived in a house the size of the average American living room.
Or the guy from Iran, that left 26 years ago because the government was on a purge of Christians...it was that or death.
FDXMECH From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 3251 posts, RR: 33
Reply 13, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 1206 times:
Quoting Jetjack74 (Reply 1): There are no comparisons between Iraq and Vietnam, except the fact the same goons who were protesting the Vietnam War(plus they're offspring), are at it again in this one.
You're so right. When you get older and grayer, time to buy Coirvette to ward off your midlife crisis. These 1968 retreads ward off the crises by reanacting their halycon flag burning youth. Like a bunch of termites in hibernation waiting for the right time to hatch.
Seb146 From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 11903 posts, RR: 15
Reply 14, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 1187 times:
Quoting Stirling (Reply 6): where the Bush administration hopes to implant democracy side by side with Islam
*YAY* Let's have the government institute laws where women are second class citizens and the law turns to religion for answers!
Quoting Stirling (Reply 6): We are not the only nation dependent on Persian Gulf oil.
But I thought the war in Iraq was to rid Iraq of WMDs and Saddam and the evil he possessed?
Quoting Stirling (Reply 6): courage of the Iraqi people who shocked the world and defied all the pessimists by showing up to vote in January 2005
And they got to vote when Saddam was in power too. They had guns pointed to their heads when Saddam was in power too.
Don't take me wrong. Saddam was an evil and horrible man. *IF* regime change had been achieved without the WMD/oil/insurgent/terrorist or whatever talking point the administration is putting out today, Iraq would not be as violent as it is right now and things would have been much better.
I think the only thing we have learned from Vietnam is to not blame the soldiers for the precious few images and stories we get out of Iraq but rather to blame the leaders. During Vietnam, the troops that came home were called all sorts of horrible names and disrespected at every turn, but they were following orders. This time around, the soldiers are following orders but sometimes they don't know if the orders are coming from their commanding officer or a contract employee.
Quoting Jetjack74 (Reply 4): When the Iraqi's can stand on their own, we'll leave.
And you gave the reason why you're wrong.
The very same thing happened in Vietnam. US first sent military advisors to help South Vietnam stand on their own. Then they sent more and more troops and, in general, nothing much has changed. According to various books and articles made by US veterans, they simply couldn't count on South Vietnamese, just like US can't count much on Iraqi army and police today.
I suspect, there is another problem that is common between Vietnam and Iraq. Corruption among locals that prevents any real reforms. It happened in Vietnam and seems that it is happening in Iraq.
Whenever I read the memoirs of US Vietnam Veterans, there is one emotion that is very evident and common to all. They felt alone in a strange place. I'm afraid it is happening again. The only difference is that jungle is replaced by desert.
Also, I don't want anyone to think that I'm either pro or against was in Iraq. Personally, it wouldn't be ethical from me to stand on any of the sides because my country does not take part there and I have no personal interests there. It is just that I see some similarities between Iraq and Vietnam and the most important one is that US is relying on someone not very reliable (Vietnamese politicians, army and police in 1960s, Iraqi politicians, army and police now).