After the French had dug their own grave, the US arrived to impose a new form of colonialism in Asia again. (Cartoon by Bill Sanders.). Click for a larger image.
War gone bad
1971, it was clear that the war in Vietnam was over. America was trying to find ways out of the mess.
oozed into Vietnam, starting with President Harry Truman’s decision to subsidize the French in their futile effort to retrieve their Asian colony. Presidents Eisenhower and Kennedy deepened our involvement, reiterating the “domino theory,” the dubious notion that the collapse of Vietnam would spark a global wave of communist triumphs. As he escalated the commitment, Lyndon Johnson cautioned, in his typically gaudy rhetoric, that defeat would compel us to retreat to the beaches of Waikiki; his aides, whether or not they believed it, dutifully echoed the party line. Only afterward did Robert S. McNamara, the former Defense Secretary and a pivotal architect of the war, confess that “we were wrong, terribly wrong”–cold comfort for the families of the 60,000 names on the Vietnam Memorial in Washington. Senator Max W. Cleland of Georgia, a paraplegic veteran, said McNamara’s book should have been titled Sorry ‘Bout That. (via Lost Inside the Machine – TIME).
The maya machine
American handling of the post-Vietnam events were the usual propaganda tricks.
Take the above post – written some 30 years after the war ended, and 40 years, after the war became serious. Yet it counts the 60,000 Americans killed. And conveniently glosses over the 20 lakhs Vietnamese killed.
Or for instance, the infamous My Lai massacre. March 16, 1968 more than 300 elderly, women and children killed. My Lai happened in wake of a desperate US, struggling in Vietnam and resorting in massacres. After My Lai massacre, came to light, a prolonged drama of justice of played out.
The Great Game
From 1969 to 1974. Finally, all the perpetrators went scot-free – except the commander, Lt. William Calley, who served a token 3 or so years in prison – instead of the original sentence of 20 years. Seymour Hersh won a Pulitzer for uncovering the My Lai massacre and his brave reporting. After the outrage blew over, Lt. Calley too was pardoned. The Vietnamese ended with hundreds killed at My Lai. America has made a show of being a civilized society.
There are two crimes in this war. America had no business to impose this war in the Viets. After killing 20 lakhs of Viets, America cannot gloss over these deaths.
There was no reason for the Americans to be in Vietnam – except to set up Pax Americana, for which these American soldiers died. What about the Viets?
Why did 20 lakhs of them have to die.