Read time: 2 minutes

That Other Endless War - Vietnam - 1966

(Nguyen Cao Ky and LBJ in 1966 - Tea leaves in the eye of the beholder) Since the talk this week centers on the endless war in Afghanistan, I thoug
Views:

2036187961_ed39a3a741_o_10565.jpg

(Nguyen Cao Ky and LBJ in 1966 - Tea leaves in the eye of the beholder)

Since the talk this week centers on the endless war in Afghanistan, I thought it might be a good idea to visit another endless war from another time; Vietnam.

Like Afghanistan, Vietnam wasn't instantly met with derision and questions over our involvement. Like Iraq though, we were also sold a somewhat leaky bill of goods and goaded into pledging lives and untold millions over an involvement that had no timetable and no real plan.

The difference between Iraq and Afghanistan is Iraq bears some resemblance to an organized country. Where Afghanistan is one big grab-bag of tribes, sects and factions that have been over-run, quasi-colonized and fought over for hundreds, if not thousands of years.

Just like Vietnam.

In 1966 we were still getting our feet wet in Vietnam, having gone from "advisers" to "troops on the ground" in a little over a year. Support and the "domino theory" were still very much alive and our presence increased on an almost daily basis.

But also in 1966 there were the seeds of questions being sown - what was the plan? How long was it going to take? When it is supposed to end? How many troops are needed? What really was the government of South Vietnam all about?

Just like Afghanistan.

And so on June 21, 1966 Eric Severeid delivered a fifteen minute commentary on our state of siege in Vietnam.

Eric Severeid: “A crucial question: Whether our resistance in Vietnam is preventing the spread of Chinese dominance in other Asian countries, through their propaganda infiltration and subversion. The Administration points to Indonesia, where the powerful Chinese-inspired Communist apparatus was smashed not long ago. That would never have happened, we like to think were we not there in Vietnam. If this is true, all of us would feel very much better about this war in Vietnam. My personal opinion is that it’s not true.”

Needless to say, those questions only grew in number and intensity over the next several years as our justifications grew less and less feasible. It would seem we are heading in that direction again.

Can you help us out?

For 17 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit, but now Facebook is drowning us in an ocean of right wing lies. Please give a one-time or recurring donation, or buy a year's subscription for an ad-free experience. Thank you.

More C&L Coverage

Discussion

New Commenting System

Our comments are now powered by Insticator. In order to comment you will need to create an Insticator account. The process is quick and simple. Please note that the ability to comment with a C&L site account is no longer available.

We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service (revised 3/17/2016) for information on our posting policy.

Please Do Not Use the Login Link at the Top of the Site.

In order to comment you must use an Insticator account. To register an account, enter your comment and click the post button. A dialog will then appear allowing you create your account.

We will be retiring our Crooks and Liars user account system in January, 2021.

Thank you.
C&L Team