Friday, June 25, 2004
VietNam and Iraq......Quagmires?
For months now we have heard that Iraq is another VietNam, a quagmire. We have also been exposed to Johnny 'the poodle' Kerry's testimony before a Senate Committee investigating the war in Southeast Asia.
Let's go back in time. In 1961 The US and the Republic of VietNam sign an economic and military treaty. In 1962, just after the resolution of the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Kennedy Administration began to focus on halting the spread of communism. That focus narrows to South VietNam. This started with sending groups of advisors to Viet Nam to assist the South VietNamese army in containing the Viet Cong. Kennedy also engineered the coup that brought down the Diem government in the fall of 1963. Lyndon Johnson in 1964 used the questionable Gulf of Tonkin Incident to persuade the Congress to give him virtually unlimited power to defend US forces in Southeast Asia.
Johnson then began the escalation of the VietNam war by committing US military forces to putting down the Viet Cong and North VietNamese invasion of the South. The turning point of the war was the 1968 Tet Offensive. While it was a major military defeat for the Viet Cong and North VietNamese, the American media, led by Walter Cronkite, in face of the facts, turned the Tet Offensive into a victory for the Viet Cong and the North (sound familliar?). General Giap of the North in his published papers, clearly states it was a major defeat. Johnson and his Defense Secratary McNamara, micromanaged the war, ( at one point in time Johnson is said to have stated, that the US military could not bomb an outhouse in VietNam without his OK). This and Johnson's failure to Vietnamize the war effort are some of many reasons why VietNam became a quagmire. (Note to the poodle; This was Johnson's war, not Nixon's that you were "protesting" The poodle's rant before the Senate Select Committee will be the subject of another blog post in the future). Twelve years and some 56,000 plus American deaths later, US participation in VietNam ended.
Let's fast forward to 2003. US forces invade Iraq and in less then 3 months the Iraqi military was defeated. Work begins on planning the turn over of Free Iraq to the Iraqis. On 30 June 2004, just over a year from the begining of hostilities, the new Iraqi government will take control of Iraq, with the endorsement of the UN. The left has decried this as a unilateral action on the part of the US. They convenietly forget the some 45 nations have and continue to provide assistance to the US on one level or another. 14 months as opposed to some 12 years is hardly a quagmire. US forces will likely stay in Iraq for another 2 or so years. Again a far cry form the 12 years we were in VietNam. Strategically, the posting of US forces in Iraq will help considerably in the War on Terror and give the US a base of operations should Syria or Iran become a military issue in the future.
In closing it seems the left is trying to convince the American people that Iraq is the new Vietnam, solely for the purpose of defeating President Bush come this November. As Iraq takes control of their own destiny, you can expect that attacks in Iraq by terrorists and former saddam loyalists to increase and the wild eyed rantings of the left to become more shrill. Iraq is hardly the quagmire the left so desperately wanted.
Your comments, pro or con are encouraged.
Spelling, typos and grammar corrected per my favorite teacher. - Sailor