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Old 04-22-2006, 06:54 PM   #16
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Originally posted by melon


So dissent is, indeed, unpatriotic?

Melon
No, his assessment of the situation in Vietnam as well as what to do about Vietnam was wrong in 1971. His assessment of the situation in Iraq as well as what to do about Iraq today is also wrong.
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Old 04-22-2006, 07:41 PM   #17
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He was wrong and the majority of Vietnam Veterans agree. The United States by 1971 had successfully crushed the Vietcong movement in the south a year or so earlier. Most US ground combat troops had been withdrawn from Vietnam by mid-1971. The vast majority of the fighting was being conducted by South Vietnamese ground troops who were fighting North Vietnamese forces from the North.

In 1972 when the North Vietnamese launched their "Easter Offensive", they were only US military advisors and a smaller number US ground combat troops in the country. The South Vietnamese forces did all the fighting and repelled the North Vietnamese invasion.

Had the United States kept the 20,000 advisors and support troops in Vietnam for several more years to continue to support the government and military, the North Vietnamese would NEVER have been able to overrun South Vietnam.

But the last US troops were withdrawn in March 1973. Later in 1973, congress cut off all funding to South Vietnam. Still South Vietnam continue completely on its own until the Spring of 1975 when a serious of military setbacks put the North Vietnamese in a strong position to overrun the country which they did.

If the United States had kept the small number of advisors as well combat air support in the region for several more years supporting the South, the South Vietnamese would have eventually developed the capacity to successfuly defend against any North Vietnamese invasion on its own with out foreign aid.

US deaths in the war dropped significantly as the South Vietnamese took over the fighting. Less than 300 US troops were killed in Vietnam in 1972. Remaining in South Vietnam for another 5 to 10 years with just 10,000 key advisors would likely have cost about a few hundred more deaths based on the results of 1972 which saw some of the heaviest fighting of the war.

But instead, the American people and Congress turned their backs on the South Vietnamese people and let them be massacred and enslaved by the North after so much had been spent and sacraficed to prevent that outcome. To have remained in South Vietnam at the level the United States was in 1972 would have cost a tiny fraction of what the war had cost up to that point and would have ensured that South Vietnam would have remained independent and free, with the potential to develop and economy like we see today in South Korea which has one of the highest standards of living on the planet.


You can write all the words you want.

But you are just plain wrong.



Your writings are not even loosely based on fact.


How many Viet Namese people do you know?
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Old 04-22-2006, 07:45 PM   #18
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I'd be interested in seeing a factual rebuttal to Sting's argument, deep.
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Old 04-22-2006, 07:48 PM   #19
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How is he wrong on the issue of the Viet Cong being crushed in the Tet Offensive and the policy of Vietnamisation allowing US forces to leave "with honour"?
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Old 04-22-2006, 08:20 PM   #20
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Originally posted by deep



You can write all the words you want.

But you are just plain wrong.



Your writings are not even loosely based on fact.


How many Viet Namese people do you know?

My writings are NOT based on the many public myths that have developed over time about the Vietnam War, but the raw facts from casualty numbers and troop statistics and spending that are available. I could go into more factual detail, but I think I already know what your answer is going to be.
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Old 04-23-2006, 09:55 AM   #21
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By Michael Levenson, Globe Staff | April 23, 2006

"Before a wildly enthusiastic crowd of hundreds at Faneuil Hall yesterday, US Senator John F. Kerry exhorted Americans to speak out against the war in Iraq, declaring that troops are dying because of what he called an inept and deceitful policy orchestrated by the Bush administration.

It was the 35th anniversary of the day Kerry, as a young Navy veteran returning from the Mekong Delta in Vietnam, testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, famously asking, ''How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?"

Kerry's case yesterday was much the same: that Americans have a duty to speak out against a war that is sacrificing lives on the ''altar of stubborn pride."

''Presidents and politicians may worry about losing face or losing votes or losing their legacy; it is time to think about young Americans and innocent civilians who are losing their lives," Kerry said, to a thunderous standing ovation.

His speech, back on home turf, was billed by aides as a major address on the importance of dissent during wartime.

Jabbing his thumb in the air and sweeping his hands across the lectern, Kerry could barely complete three sentences without being interrupted by applause. Standing beneath oil portraits of Samuel Adams, George Washington, and John Quincy Adams, Kerry invoked history, from Congress's attempts in 1798 to silence Thomas Jefferson to Wisconsin Senator Joseph McCarthy's crusade against communism in the 1950s.

''The bedrock of America's greatest advances -- the foundation of what we know today are defining values -- was formed not by cheering things on as they were, but by taking them on and demanding change," Kerry said, again to applause.

Matt Wylie, executive director of the Massachusetts Republican Party, dismissed Kerry's criticism.

''John Kerry has been acting bizarrely ever since he lost the election for president," Wylie said yesterday. ''Today's speech is another strange step in that direction. There has never been a time in our nation's history when so many people freely gave dissenting opinions about the nation's policies from both ends of the political spectrum. John Kerry should hop on the Internet, and he'll see there is a dialogue about all the positions going on in America today."

A spokeswoman for the Republican National Committee also took issue with Kerry's remarks. ''While we have never questioned Democrats' patriotism, we do question John Kerry's motives, considering his eagerness to engage in political theatrics as he ponders a presidential run," said Tracey Schmitt.

After the speech, Kerry, in a crush of reporters, waved off questions about whether his remarks signaled a renewed interest in running for president in 2008, saying he was focused only on policy. But in the crowd -- thick with Democratic activists, many of whom had followed Kerry's career for decades -- the hunger was evident. People yelled, ''Run!" and ''2008!"

''Oh, beautiful, wonderful," exulted Grace Lindquist, 86, making the A-OK sign from her wheelchair. ''One of the best speeches I've ever heard."

Natasha Rosenberg, 14, who came to the speech with a digital camera, beamed. ''It was great," she said. ''It put words to what I've been feeling about the entire deal for a long time."

And some wondered why Kerry -- who voted to give President Bush authorization to go to war in Iraq -- had not spoken out so forcefully during his failed bid for president in 2004.

Kerry offered a scathing review of what he derisively termed the ''Bush-Cheney doctrine" -- in which executive power trumps the constitutional separation of powers, ''and smearing administration critics is not only permissible, but necessary."

Over the course of the 40-minute speech, Kerry was interrupted by applause 39 times. He made one joke, riffing on Franco-American animosities and the fact that teaching German was banned in some schools during World War I.

''At that time, it was apparently sounding German, not looking French, that got you in trouble," Kerry said, to laughter. "
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Old 04-23-2006, 10:18 AM   #22
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His speech from yesterday is on CSpan right now and will probably be rerun, if anyone is interested.
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Old 04-23-2006, 12:15 PM   #23
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Ah, now, if he is willing to be a voice of the value of dissent without another run at the Presidency. my opinion may change.
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Old 04-23-2006, 04:25 PM   #24
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Originally posted by STING2


Its John Kerry's right to protest, he was wrong in what he alleged, his conclusions about the United States involvement in Vietnam, the Cold War, as well as overall US Foreign and National Security Policy.

I have never seen the "Stolen Honor" DVD, I have read John Kerry's actual testimony multiple times which even John Kerry admits to being embarrassed about some of the things in it.

I never said he was wrong to do what he did, just wrong in his claims, idea's, plans for the future of the country. He was wrong about Vietnam in 1971, he was wrong about what to do about defense spending when he first ran for the Senate in 1984. He was wrong in voting against the 1st Gulf War in 1991 and he was wrong the 2004 election. He is wrong now on his description of the situation in Iraq as well as his ideas on what to do.
now i understand what you were saying but i still don't agree.

you are saying that if we would have stayed that Vietnamization would have been successful. how many years? would we still be there? and your "made America seem weak" theory also bothers me. Almost contridicting as it happpens. we were fighting in Vietnam and Iraq so that the people could be free from there current Government but they see in America that the politicians are ignoring the will of the people by continuing a war that most of the people in the country don't support. what does that say about our government. and i believe that John Kerry was right during Vietnam when he said that we needed to
first win the hearts and minds of the people. the failure to do that is what makes us weak in the peoples eyes and those people are the ones strapping bombs to themeselves. so if you can say that osama and sadam were givin strength by our withdrawl from Vietnam i can say what i just said.

maybe i don't know as much as you but thats what i can say to defend my opinions.
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Old 04-23-2006, 10:21 PM   #25
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Well said, John Kerry. It's shocking to me that there are still a few educated Americans out there—very few, granted— who still defend the actions of this administration in regard to the Iraq fiasco.
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Old 04-23-2006, 11:19 PM   #26
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now i understand what you were saying but i still don't agree.

you are saying that if we would have stayed that Vietnamization would have been successful. how many years? would we still be there? and your "made America seem weak" theory also bothers me. Almost contridicting as it happpens. we were fighting in Vietnam and Iraq so that the people could be free from there current Government but they see in America that the politicians are ignoring the will of the people by continuing a war that most of the people in the country don't support. what does that say about our government. and i believe that John Kerry was right during Vietnam when he said that we needed to
first win the hearts and minds of the people. the failure to do that is what makes us weak in the peoples eyes and those people are the ones strapping bombs to themeselves. so if you can say that osama and sadam were givin strength by our withdrawl from Vietnam i can say what i just said.

maybe i don't know as much as you but thats what i can say to defend my opinions.
At the level that US forces were at in 1972 which was about 20,000(down from a peak of 540,000 in 1969) another 6 years at most, at that level or perhaps half the level would have completed the process. "Major" North Vietnamese offensive were coming in intervals of every 3 to 4 years by that time. Another defeat like the one the North Vietnamese suffered in 1972 or at most two, would have forced them to give up the fight. If not, by the end of the 1970s, the South would be strong enough to carry on the fight on its own. In addition, the North Vietnamese would not be able to count on the same Soviet and Chinese support they had enjoyed, indefinitely. By the mid-1970s China was moving closer politically towards the United States, and the Soviet Union was starting to strain economically because of the overall cost of the Cold War.

Would there still be a US presence in South Vietnam, perhaps. US troops are still stationed in Germany 61 years after the end of World War II. But it would not have to be a large presense if any at all.

The United States has fought in both Vietnam and Iraq because of threats to international security 1st, with a 2nd goal being the formation of a better government(democratic government and market oriented economy) for the people of those countries, which naturally enhances US and international security.

Most people in the United States still support the war in the sense that the majority of people do not want to see the United States immediately withdraw from Iraq, based on the polling data. But its important not to draw so many conclusion from polling data. The country voted in Bush by solid majority in November 2004, only 18 months ago indicated that support for the war was still strong then no matter what various polls might have said. On the anniversy of the war a few weeks ago, only small numbers of people in a few major cities gathered to march against it. True opposition to the war is no where near the levels that were seen during the Vietnam War, and public opinion was considered to be divided on that war.
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Old 04-23-2006, 11:35 PM   #27
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Well said, John Kerry. It's shocking to me that there are still a few educated Americans out there—very few, granted— who still defend the actions of this administration in regard to the Iraq fiasco.
The majority of the Americans voted for Bush in November 2004, despite Michael Moores popular film, a massive concert tour by some of the most popular artist in the United States, as well as other high profile media related events leading up to the election.

In hindsite, everyone including myself can find something they do not agree with, that the administration did in Iraq. But you could say that about any war that the United States has ever been involved in of this length and scope, if one were to put it under the same microscope that this war is under.

True opposition to the war is not very strong. In the current polling data where most people get the sense that the majority of Americans are opposed to the war, the same data reveals that a majority of Americans are opposed to an immediate withdrawal. On the third anniversy of the war, the average number of protesters on the streets in the major cities was only in the hundreds. Back in 1968, 3 years after the introduction of US ground combat units to Vietnam, there were hundreds of thousands of people marching in most major cities, multiple times a year.

There are a wide number of opinions on the war in Iraq in the United States today. The media does their best to group them into either 100% for the war or 100% against the war. The reality of what most people feel and think on the issue is a little more complex.
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Old 04-23-2006, 11:41 PM   #28
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Originally posted by STING2




Most people in the United States still support the war in the sense that the majority of people do not want to see the United States immediately withdraw from Iraq
i don't want immediate withdrawl from Iraq but i certainly don't support the war.
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Old 04-24-2006, 09:44 PM   #29
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Originally posted by melon
So dissent is, indeed, unpatriotic?
Dissent is neither patriotic or unpatriotic. It is just dissent.

Making patriotism a centerpiece for dissent is just as bad as making patriotism a centerpiece for justification.
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