Postmodern classic?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Iraq and Vietnam

I've been trying for some time now to write a comparison between Iraq and Vietnam, but with the fast pace of the information era, someone beat me to it. Fortunately, they're far better qualified than myself.

Richard Miniter has a 2-part series (pt. 1, pt. 2) at At The American Thinker, J. Peter Mulhern paints a cynical view that, no matter the current policy, we're in Iraq to stay if only because no one wants to be responsible for 'the next terrorist attack on our country'. Some might disagree with that conclusion, but I happen to think it is quite accurate.

Strategically, tactically- Vietnam and Iraq are different. But their impact on American society is less so. My understanding of the polarization of that time has led me to believe that we are again struggling with the question of will. Domestically here in the US, there is an ambivalence to the exercise of military strength abroad. For right or wrong (count me in for wrong), we thought it would be best to withdraw our aid from South Vietnam in the misguided belief our intervention was only hurting them. Now we are fighting in another foreign country again, can we support that?

We can. We're not willing to give it all up just yet, and enough people know it.


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