Friday, November 21, 2014

The Vietnam "talking warheads" are back

On my mind today: The talking warheads. 

Since the Republicans have gained control of Congress, we are shamefully forced into re-fighting the War-of-Words over Vietnam. When Republicans begin sniffing the scent of blood on trails as old as 1974, something must be up.

Why is this slick video, about something that happened forty years ago, suddenly making the rounds now, already with some 400,000 plus views as of this writing? 

Prager University's recent article on "The Truth About the Vietnam War"   seems at first glance to merely vilify our exit from the Vietnam War: At a closer look, the article has implications far beyond that. We should be asking ourselves, "Why an article about Vietnam? And Why now?"  Perhaps this is but the beginning of a new onslaught of right-wing war propaganda. Surely it bears keeping an eye on.

Is this part of a continuing propaganda war to win the minds of Americans over to a philosophy of perpetual war? I am inclined to think so.
What I am posting first is my immediate reaction to the propaganda piece from Prager University. After that I will post as a link to the Prayer University for purpose of reference. 

Please read my response and then you can follow the link and report back to comment whether agree with me or not.
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MY REACTION TO "TRUTH ABOUT VIETNAM" ARTICLE FROM PRAGER UNIVERSITY
Ouch!
What the Prager University article assumes is that we could predict what would have ensued had the USA followed the article's suggested course of actions: That is. to have partitioned Vietnam into two warring countries.

We should ask ourselves, What kind of "peace" would have ensued? What kind of peace do you want in the world? What should we have settled for?
Would we have settled for a "peace" in Vietnam similar to what we have in Israel today? An American client state/puppet army propped up with USA dollars and technology, fighting perpetually against the likes of Hezbollah, and the various puppets of Assyria and Iran, with tens of thousands of deaths dragged out over repeated decades and disputed "blue lines" in the sand?

Keep in mind that the economic price of that Israeli kind of "peace" has been. The USA regularly spends $91 billion dollars annually of US money, most of which is tax money, supporting that supposed peace. We have been shelling out for at least fifty years. Some peace that is. What Prager's solution would do -- if logically extended -- is to multiply that shelling out of US tax dollars to support American mayhem in multiple places around the globe. 

But the cost goes way beyond the US aid to Israel. 

 According to Wikipedia: "Since its establishment in 1948, the State of Israel, at great American expense, has fought seven recognized wars, two Palestinian intifadas, and a series of armed conflicts in the broader Arab-Israeli conflict." 

The cost of Israel's peace in terms of human lives and suffering is ongoing too: " [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israeli_casualties_of_war]  Between 1948 and 1997, 20,093[3] Israeli soldiers were killed in combat, 75,000 Israelis were wounded, and nearly 100,000[4] Israelis were considered disabled army veterans"  

Is that the kind of peace that we would have created in Vietnam by following Pragers recommendations?  

If I undestand the data correctly, the Israeli "peace" has caused  over 8,051 war-related deaths from 2005 through 2008. Only 31 percent (Israeli) to 41 percent (Palestinian) of war deaths have been combatants -- the others were all civilians.

Whether this are the kind of "peace" that we could expect from client states elsewhere -- including as Vietnam had we gone that route --  I truthfully don't know. I would definitely need to know that, however, before I could side with Prager University and multiply this approach globally.

The Korean Peace

Might an American supported, Vietnam standoff have been a "peace," like the peace in Korea, with perpetual hostilities, disagreements over the threats and the dangers of a potential nuclear war? Again, one simply does not know. Perhaps the south and the north would have calmly lived in peace and brotherly love forever more. Somehow I doubt that, but it would have been a possible outcome.

Imaginary and Real Threats to the USA

Today, Vietnam poses absolutely no threat to the United States, contrary to the predictions of all the talking war-heads at the time.
North Korea, on the other hand, has been a pus filled blister and a potential threat to the USA ever since we left.
And how is it that the military advisers and Republican talking heads failed to convince Congress of what they must have assumed were the black and white choices available at the time of the Paris Peace Talks? And how is it that they failed to communicate this narrative effectively at the time this supposed failure of the USA Congress was going on, and immediately afterward?
So I have mixed feelings about that Prager piece of propaganda.
People who are committed to an ideology of war and the false hope of military "victory" will always keep trying to prove their point, even forty years after the fact.
Although Prager University's article is the best propaganda piece on the Vietnam conflict that I have seen to date from the far right, I am not convinced:  I do have to wonder why it took forty years for them to get their act together and create such a narrative over this issue, and how it is that they failed to convince the American public as long ago as 1974 
Best wishes for a Peace filled Holiday.
Here is the link to the propaganda piece that I am refuting:
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http://www.prageruniversity.com/…/The-Truth-about-the-Vietn…

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