Awhile back, buzzflash.com ran an editorial that pointed out how futile the Vietnam War was. In fact, in the end, it no longer was a war about keeping South Vietnam from becoming "Communist"; it just became a war fought to ensure that the U.S. wasn't perceived as losing, even as it was suffering a devastating loss in a war that shouldn't have been fought in the first place.
In short, thousands and thousands of U.S. soldiers -- and hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese and Cambodians -- lost their lives over the continuation of a war for the mere purpose of the fear that a pullout would have left the perception that the U.S. "lost the war."
The BuzzFlash editorial was confirmed in a May 27th Associated Press article that received little attention. In newly released documents about the Vietnam War, it is revealed that "Henry A. Kissinger quietly acknowledged to China in 1972 that Washington could accept a communist takeover of South Vietnam if that evolved after a withdrawal of U.S. troops -- even as the war to drive back the communists dragged on with mounting deaths."
In short, the Chinese knew that the U.S. troops were going to leave before we did. At that point, Kissinger was developing his rapprochment with China, even as he and the Republicans claimed we were fighting to prevent a Chinese dominated Communist takeover of Southeast Asia (the so-called "Domino Theory.")
The AP article notes, "President Richard M. Nixon's envoy told Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai: 'If we can live with a communist government in China, we ought to be able to accept it in Indochina.'" Kissinger's only apparent goal was to "save face" at the cost of far too many lives.
As we pointed out in our previous BuzzFlash editorial, the Vietnam War has disturbing parallels to the Iraq War. What we are doing now is just "saving face" and trotting out the jingoistic Bush slogans of achieving "total victory," when even the Busheviks themselves know that Iraq is imploding into a cauldorn of horror.
Furthermore, as with Iraq, the Republican failures, lies and hubris have resulted in creating the very problems that we are supposed to be fighting to prevent. We, in essence, are exacerbating the situation, not ameliorating it.
And then, we wondered, in our editorial, about how we won the Vietnam War by losing it. After all, this year, the U.S. is sponsoring Vietnam to enter the World Trade Organization, the international symbol of capitalism. Bill Gates recently went to Vietnam and was treated as a hero by Vietnamese university students. U.S. companies are tripping over each other to offshore factory and production jobs to Vietnam.
What happened to the domino theory? We lost the Vietnam War and the dominoes ended up tipping toward capitalism.
Why the Hell did we fight it in the first place?
Good questions to ask about Vietnam. Good questions to ask about Iraq.
Rumsfeld and Cheney presided, under Gerald Ford, over the pull-out from Vietnam. They appear determined to make up for a "humiliation" that ended up with Vietnam becoming an international trading partner.
Rumsfeld and Cheney are fighting their own personal war in Iraq, at a cost of tens of thousands of lives and billions of dollars.
It is a megalomaniac crime that was unnecessary, counterproductive, and created a pit of horror, where a stable, secular government (albeit run by a tyrant) once existed.
The U.S. used to be a nation that rewarded competence.
Now, our leaders become more empowered with each new failure.
We have devolved from the greatness and moral leadership of an FDR into the mediocrity, incompetence and arrogance of the Busheviks.
It's evolution in reverse, at a terrible cost.