Classes from Vietnam for Ukraine

In April 1965, U.S. President Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) defined why he was escalating US…

In April 1965, U.S. President Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) defined why he was escalating US involvement in Vietnam. With an Orwellian contact, LBJ titled the speech “Peace with out Conquest” as he introduced the start of US air assaults on Vietnam. He defined that “We should struggle if we’re to stay in a world the place each nation can form its personal future and solely in such a world will our personal freedom be safe… we’ve got made a nationwide pledge to assist South Vietnam defend its independence and I intend to maintain that promise. To dishonor that pledge, to desert the small and courageous nation to its enemies and the fear should comply with can be an unforgivable flawed.”

Johnson additional defined, “We’re additionally there to strengthen world order… To go away Vietnam to its destiny would shake the boldness of all these individuals within the worth of an American dedication and within the worth of America’s phrases.”

Studying no classes from the failure and mass slaughter of the Korean Warfare within the earlier decade, the US navy commenced widespread bombing of Vietnam and despatched lots of of hundreds of troopers.

On the time, spring 1965, about 400 US troopers had died within the battle. The conflict was not but extensively unpopular. People who protested towards the Vietnam Warfare have been a small minority. It might be two years earlier than Martin Luther King’s well-known denunciation of the conflict.

Years later, after lots of of hundreds had been drafted into the navy with the deaths of tens of hundreds, the conflict grew to become extensively unpopular. In the end, over 58,000 People and three million Vietnamese civilians and troopers died within the conflict. The associated fee in human lives and wasted assets was immense. The “Nice Society” that LBJ hoped to construct was stopped by the diversion of human lives, vitality and assets into the Vietnam Warfare.

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There are similarities at present with the US and NATO pouring tens of BILLIONS of {dollars} in weapons into Ukraine to counter the Russian navy intervention. The US and western allies are offering further assist in intelligence and navy recommendation. Whereas there are usually not but official US troops (as there weren’t in Vietnam for the primary years), there are particular operations and far different navy assist.

President Biden and administration leaders sound much like LBJ within the early stage of the Vietnam Warfare. In his remarks to Congress asking for extra funding for Ukraine, Biden stated, “We want this invoice to assist Ukraine in its struggle for freedom…. The price of this struggle will not be low-cost, however caving to aggression goes to be extra expensive if we permit it to occur.” Making clear that the US aim isn’t just the “freedom” of Ukraine, Biden continues, “Investing in Ukraine’s freedom and safety is a small worth to pay to punish Russian aggression, to reduce the danger of future conflicts.”

In each Vietnam and Ukraine, the US put in or promoted pro-US governments to counter “adversary” nations. Within the 1950’s, the US prevented a nationwide referendum in Vietnam which might have united the nation with out a conflict. In 2014, the US was instrumental in selling the Ukraine coup which overthrew a democratically elected authorities resulting in the secession of Crimea and civil conflict in japanese Ukraine. Whereas most within the West assume the Ukraine battle started in February this 12 months, it truly started in February 2014. The 2016 documentary “Ukraine on Fireplace,” banned by YouTube, describes the coup.

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Western media portrayed the US and South Vietnam successful the conflict in South East Asia till the 1968 Tet offensive uncovered the lies and actuality. Equally, western media portrays Ukrainians successful the conflict midst overwhelming Ukrainian public assist. In actuality, Russia and the secessionist Donetsk Peoples Republic (DPR) and Lugansk Peoples Republic (LPR) have steadily taken management of south east Ukraine. In the meantime, Ukrainian president Zelensky has overseen the the imprisonment, torture and killing of opponents. The biggest opposition celebration has been banned. Many Ukrainians oppose his coverage and continuation of the conflict. There are rumors of presidential assassination makes an attempt, simply as there have been in South Vietnam.

Ukrainians have turn into cannon fodder for the US geopolitical objectives, simply because the South Vietnamese have been.

It’s now clear that the LBJ’s escalation in 1965 was an enormous and expensive mistake. The unnecessary conflict did immense injury to Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. It is usually had monumental damaging ramifications in the US.

Will the US and allies proceed to escalate the battle in Ukraine, to “double down” on an intervention half method world wide with the aim of wounding Russia? Have we discovered nothing from Vietnam and subsequent US/Western overseas coverage disasters of the previous 40 years?

Rick Sterling is an unbiased journalist primarily based within the SF Bay Space. He can contacted at [email protected].

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