Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Iraq Exit Like Vietnam?

In the Washington Post, Michael Gerson in An Exit to Disaster has this:

In 1974, a weary Congress cut off funds for Cambodia and South Vietnam, leading to the swift fall of both allies. In his memoir, "Years of Renewal," Henry Kissinger tells the story of former Cambodian prime minister Sirik Matak, who refused to leave his country.

"I thank you very sincerely," Matak wrote in response, "for your offer to transport me towards freedom. I cannot, alas, leave in such a cowardly fashion. As for you, and in particular for your great country, I never believed for a moment that you would have this sentiment of abandoning a people which has chosen liberty. You have refused us your protection, and we can do nothing about it. You leave, and my wish is that you and your country will find happiness under this sky. But, mark it well, that if I shall die here on the spot and in my country that I love, it is no matter, because we are all born and must die. I have only committed this mistake of believing in you [the Americans]."

Eventually, between 1 million and 2 million Cambodians were murdered by theKhmer Rouge when "peace" came to Indochina. Matak, Kissinger recounts, was shot in the stomach and died three days later.

Sometimes peace for America can produce ghosts of its own.

Sometimes facts speak for themselves as above.

On the other hand there's this:

Remember Zbigniew Brzezinski from the Carter years; well here is what he said at Duke this spring, from the Durham Herald-Sun:

Brzezinski said there's no reason to think a bloodbath would necessarily follow a U.S. withdrawal.

"We expected that the U.S. leaving Vietnam would result in massive killings and genocide and so forth, and collapse of the dominoes in Southeast Asia," he said. "It didn't happen. How certain are we of the horror scenarios that have been mentioned in what will take place in Iraq?"

Again, I am not making this quote up although it does strike me as unbelieveable. I suppose forgeting about losing millions of lives is something we would all like to forget

1 comment:

Nathan Tabor said...

After 4 disastrous years under Carter, and a foreign policy that managed to be feckless and offensive at the same time, it amazes me that Brzezinski is considered an authority on these matters.