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Tue Dec 16, 2014, 04:53 AM

 

Recent video claims Democrats lost the Vietnam War.

Sorry if it's already been posted, but I just heard of it today.

Any expert around?



0:00Decades back, in late 1972, South Vietnam and the United States were winning the Vietnam War
0:07decisively by every conceivable measure. That's not just my view.
0:14That was the view of our enemy, the North Vietnamese government officials.
0:19 Victory was apparent when President Nixon ordered the U.S. Air Force
0:23to bomb industrial and military targets in Hanoi, North Vietnam's capital city,
0:29and in Haiphong, its major port city, and we would stop the bombing
0:34 if the North Vietnamese would attend the Paris Peace Talks that they had left earlier.
0:40The North Vietnamese did go back to the Paris Peace talks, and we did stop the bombing as promised.
0:48On January the 23rd, 1973, President Nixon gave a speech to the nation on primetime television
0:56announcing that the Paris Peace Accords had been initialed by the United States,
1:02South Vietnam, North Vietnam, the Viet Cong, and the Accords would be signed on the 27th.
1:09What the United States and South Vietnam received in those accords was victory.
1:15At the White House, it was called "VV Day," "Victory in Vietnam Day."
1:22The U.S. backed up that victory with a simple pledge within the Paris Peace Accords saying:
1:28should the South require any military hardware to defend itself against any North Vietnam aggression
1:36we would provide replacement aid to the South on a piece-by-piece, one-to-one
1:41replacement, meaning a bullet for a bullet; a helicopter for a helicopter, for all things lost --
1:48replacement. The advance of communist tyranny had been halted by those accords.
1:55Then it all came apart. And It happened this way: In August of the following year, 1974,
2:03President Nixon resigned his office as a result of what became known as "Watergate."
2:09Three months after his resignation came the November congressional elections and within them
2:14the Democrats won a landslide victory for the new Congress and many of the members used
2:21their new majority to de-fund the military aid the U.S. had promised, piece for piece,
2:30breaking the commitment that we made to the South Vietnamese in Paris to provide whatever
2:36military hardware the South Vietnamese needed in case of aggression from the North.
2:42Put simply and accurately, a majority of Democrats of the 94th Congress
2:48did not keep the word of the United States.
2:53On April the 10th of 1975, President Gerald Ford appealed directly to those members of
3:00the congress in an evening Joint Session, televised to the nation. In that speech he
3:07literally begged the Congress to keep the word of the United States. But as President
3:13Ford delivered his speech, many of the members of the Congress walked out of the chamber.
3:19Many of them had an investment in America's failure in Vietnam. They had participated
3:25in demonstrations against the war for many years. They wouldn't give the aid.
3:33On April the 30th South Vietnam surrendered and Re-education Camps were constructed,
3:40and the phenomenon of the Boat People began. If the South Vietnamese had received the arms
3:46that the United States promised them would the result have been different?
3:51It already had been different.
3:53The North Vietnamese leaders admitted that they were testing the new President,
3:57Gerald Ford, and they took one village after another, then cities, then provinces and our
4:04only response was to go back on our word. The U.S. did not re-supply the South Vietnamese
4:12as we had promised. It was then that the North Vietnamese knew they were on the road to South
4:17Vietnam's capital city, Saigon, that would soon be renamed Ho Chi Minh City.
4:24Former Arkansas Senator William Fulbright, who had been the Chairman of the Senate Foreign
4:29Relations Committee made a public statement about the surrender of South Vietnam.
4:35He said this, "I am no more distressed than I would be about Arkansas losing a football game to Texas."
4:45The U.S. knew that North Vietnam would violate the accords and so we planned for it.
4:50What we did not know was that our own Congress would violate the accords.
4:55And violate them, of all things, on behalf of the North Vietnamese.
5:01That's what happened.
5:04I'm Bruce Herschensohn.

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 05:03 AM

1. Wow! what a bunch of absolute bullshit

Over a decade long, over 58,000 US military KIA, countless other injured, and we were winning? At what point were we winning?

That's got to be the most outrageous rewrite if history I have seen yet

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Response to marym625 (Reply #1)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 05:09 AM

2. Not to mention Nixon and friends committed treason and harpooned peace talks....

.... in 68 to help him win the election.

And that's from a contemporaneous source, The President of The United States. Not some hack rewrite of history.

http://m.

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Response to marym625 (Reply #1)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 05:10 AM

3. From the video, it means the VC were not gaining ground.

 

I guess.

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Response to marym625 (Reply #1)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 07:03 AM

5. The key question is what does winning actually mean in a war like that?

That said this mythology has been common on the right for decades even if it was a Republican President who pulled the plug on Vietnam.

Bryant

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 06:51 AM

4. At first glance, it sounds like an American version of the Stabbed-in-the-Back Legend

The social and economic upheaval that followed World War I powerfully destabilized Germany's fledgling democracy and gave rise to many radical right wing parties in Weimar Germany. Particularly detrimental in connection with the harsh provisions of Versailles was the rampant conviction among many in the general population that Germany had been "stabbed in the back" by the "November criminals"—those who had helped to form the new Weimar government and broker the peace which Germans had so desperately wanted, but which had ended so disastrously in the Versailles Treaty.

Many Germans forgot that they had applauded the fall of the Kaiser, had initially welcomed parliamentary democratic reform, and had rejoiced at the armistice. They recalled only that the German Left—Socialists, Communists, and Jews, in common imagination—had surrendered German honor to a disgraceful peace when no foreign armies had even set foot on German soil. This Dolchstosslegende (stab-in-the-back legend) was initiated and fanned by retired German wartime military leaders, who, well aware in 1918 that Germany could no longer wage war, had advised the Kaiser to sue for peace. It helped to further discredit German socialist and liberal circles who felt most committed to maintain Germany's fragile democratic experiment.

http://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php?ModuleId=10007429

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 07:05 AM

6. What utter horseshit!

People really believe this tripe.

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 07:32 AM

7. It's best to ignore any Youtube video that starts with the words "The Truth about." (nt)

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 07:37 AM

8. Another right wing exercise in revisionist history.

After American troops were removed from Vietnam the war was lost. Even before American troops were removed the war was lost.

And what would we have won if we had "won" the war?

Would the Vietnamese people had been better off? I fucking seriously doubt it. Would they still have an American right wing puppet government?

If Vietnam is so bad now that the United States and our allies lost the war, why have we embraced Vietnam as a trading partner?

Why don't we have economic sanctions against Vietnam as we maintain against Cuba? You know, if Vietnam is sooo bad.

I will not recommend the OP. I am sick of right wing misinformation posted on DU. We get quite enough of it on every fucking TV channel and radio station including NPR.

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 08:00 AM

9. I hate the constant rewrite of history we're doing

Both parties were guilty of atrocities during the decades we were there. Both parties lied through their teeth.

The Gulf of Tonkin and secretly expanding the war into Cambodia and Laos are just two of the lies perpetrated on the American people.

It was The Pentagon Papers being exposed that ended that senseless, horrible war. It was one of the times in our history that the people forced the government to do something. Had either of those things not happened, no telling how long we would have stayed there, or how many hundreds of thousands more people would have been killed.

The My Lai Massacre was recently wiped from history books in a high school, I believe in Denver. The government has tried to rid our involvement in, and the fact we started, anything that reflects badly on the USA, in recorded history. The fact that they have tried to eradicate the word "torture" from Wikipedia, regarding the torture report, proves that.

The Gulf of Tonkin initiative passed in Congress with only 2 votes against it in the Senate. Another war based on lies by the President.

A Republican president finally ended it. Democrats in Congress pushed for it to end. But both parties contributed to the seemingly endless war.

But at no time, since we sent in ground troops, were we winning

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 08:28 AM

10. Ending the war was a moral imperative...

...that allowed Republicans to begin blaming Democrats for the loss as quickly as possible.

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 08:35 AM

11. Vietnam and Iraq wars started by same class of folks -- the 'money trumps peace' people.

It's not just class, the freaking players and their kin:

Vietnam and Iraq Wars Started by Same People

Hitler’s Bankers Shaped Vietnam War

Updated with new info and additional details:

Know your BFEE: War and Oil are just two longtime Main Lines of Business

And for those who think there's no difference between the administration of President John F. Kennedy and what followed:

'Arrogant' CIA Disobeys Orders in Viet Nam

PS: The only reason Democracy has a chance against tyranny are people who give a damn about the truth.

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 09:13 AM

12. "Hearts and Minds" is a good rebuttal of this

http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/hearts-and-minds/

Hearts and Minds is an Academy Award winning documentary about the Vietnam War directed by Peter Davis. The film's title is based on a quote from President Lyndon B. Johnson: "the ultimate victory will depend on the hearts and minds of the people who actually live out there". The movie was chosen as Best Feature Documentary at the 47th Academy Awards presented in 1975.

The film premiered at the 1974 Cannes Film Festival. Commercial distribution was delayed in the United States due to legal issues, including a temporary restraining order obtained by one of the interviewees, former National Security Advisor Walt Rostow who had claimed through his attorney that the film was "somewhat misleading" and "not representative" and that he had not been given the opportunity to approve the results of his interview.

After Columbia Pictures refused to distribute the picture, Bert Schneider and Henry Jaglom purchased back the rights and released the film in March 1975 through Warner Bros.

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Tue Dec 16, 2014, 09:23 AM

13. This is too stupid to warrant a serious reply. BTW, it was, and always will be, the VietNam CONFLICT

 

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Response to Albertoo (Original post)

Thu Feb 12, 2015, 05:33 AM

14. Bruce Herschensohn is truth to his words

Bullshit to those comments that were negative about VN war.

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Response to xomdem (Reply #14)

Thu Feb 12, 2015, 01:55 PM

15. That war was a moral failing of the US, and we should be ashamed of ourselves for it.

 

Those who treat this war as some sort of crime committed by the Vietnamese people against US belong in a mental institution.

There is no way to "win" a sinful act.

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