19 juli 2005

Déjà-vu (De andere kijk)

Yesterday, general William Westmoreland, commander of US troops in Vietnam, died at the age of 91. Read the whole article.

The article struck me as a déjà-vu, especially with the present situation in Iraq in mind. This is why.

- First, just for the record, the general contended that the US “did not lose the conflict”. We are not losing in Iraq either.

- The US “did not make good (its) commitment to the South Vietnamese.” We cannot make the same mistake in Iraq.

- “In vain, he sought permission to engage enemy forces in their sanctuaries in Cambodia, Laos and North Vietnam.” I do not need to remind you of today’s sanctuaries in Syria, Iran, Saudi-Arabia…

- “American support for the war suffered a tremendous blow” during the Tet offensive in 1968. Tet was a military failure, but a propaganda victory. The daily suicide bombings in Baghdad have a similar effect. They just kill innocent people, but give the press in their flashy hotels the impression of an omnipotent “insurgency”.

- Westmoreland “resented the time he had to spend correcting errors, misinterpretations, judgments and falsehoods” contained in news reports.” No further comment.

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