Skip to comments.Obama's Afghanistan decision evokes LBJ's 1965 order on Vietnam buildup
Posted on 12/06/2009 11:57:57 AM PST by South40
Hovering in the shadows of President Barack Obama's decision last week to ramp up the nation's war effort in Afghanistan, even as he promises to bring it to a swift conclusion, are ghosts of another decision, made 44 years ago by a Texan in the White House.
In 1965, Lyndon B. Johnson took ownership of a war he, like Obama, had inherited. Gen. William Westmoreland wanted more troops in Vietnam, and after a protracted debate within the White House, Johnson sent them.
Over the next three years, he would send hundreds of thousands more and launch a carpet-bombing campaign against North Vietnam. Johnson's presidency and many argue, Johnson himself were destroyed long before America could finally, 10 years later, quit Vietnam.
Obama's decision to send 30,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan has reawakened those memories of Vietnam's early days, and brought unsettling comparisons from an array of historians who have spent their careers studying Johnson.
"Iraq and Afghanistan stand in the shadow of Vietnam," said historian Robert Dallek, a Johnson biographer. "It becomes inescapable that people are going to have doubts and questions about the wisdom of trying to control so distant and foreign a place."
(Excerpt) Read more at dallasnews.com ...
I wonder when the GOP and the NeoCons will begin accusing Obama of killing American boys in Afghanistan?
Johnson never really wanted a victory in Vietnam. He just wanted to avoid any political damage and ensure that the war did not interfere with his socialist domestic agenda. In this respect. Obama is taking exactly the same course and will likely have exactly the same outcome.
“I will not send American boys to Southeast Asia to fight a war that Asian boys should be fighting!”-—Lyndon Baynes Johnson, 1964 debates with Goldwater.
I have dispised Democrats ever since.
Exactly. Ø wants the US to lose - thus losing: face, prestige, influence, power, money, American lives, allies, etc.
My evidence is that the people he surrounds himself with - Bill Ayers, Rev. Wright, etc. - all HATE the US. These goals are consistent with their hatred, and as Ø shares their politics, he shares their goals.
The real comparison is not sending the troops, but handcuffing them when they get there. There have already been instances where troops under ambush were denied artillery support because of new ROE that are make avoiding civilian casualties the top priority over our troops lives. And like Vietnam, the enemy has a border they can flee accross for sanctuary when things get too hot.
Most absurd, how are military intelligence supposed to get info when prisoners must be read Miranda rights and provided a lawyer, and our guys will be court marshalled if they punch one in the mouth during capture?
IMHO, Obama wants to lose.
and Mr Ficklin—
just what kind of outcome do you think results when a half-hearted, political derived policy calculation smacks up against an enemy with the will to win?
Got any history on that opinion?
Everything 0bama has done has:
A. weakened America
B. strengthened islam
C. attacked Israel
...or some combination of the above.
Well you should have despised democraps sooner. What do you suppose Roosevelt said prior to our entering WW2?
Hint—he was a strong socialist masquerading as a democrap (not that there was much to cover up with a mask.)
Any pattern when it comes to democraps making policy announcements?
You have it. The mission is everything.
I guess you mean the rules of engagement?
Those are the rules of engagement for COIN. If you want to follow the Petraeus/McCrystal COIN mission, those are the rules of engagement that you have to accept.
Otherwise, you need to follow Biden's counter-terrorism mission, which has a different set of ROE.
“There have already been instances where troops under ambush were denied artillery support because of new ROE” Was it ROE or the tactics, techniques and procedures that put those Troops in such a positions of vulnerability being left tactically exposed without support?
Helicopter gunships http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/bloggers/2401279/posts?page=1
What I am referring to is an article posted here a couple of months ago about a US platoon caught in an ambush and pinned down by a couple hundred Taliban. They desperately requested artillery support fire but were refused because there were civilians in that area and the new policy doesn’t allow it (in order to win Afghan popular support). The platoon commander told them that he could see the area in question, and there were no civilians there, but was still refused. Eventually they managed to fight their way out without support, but with additional casulaties.
I am for sending whatever troops the commander needs, as long as the mission makes sense. But the strategey being used now will not, IMHO work. We will likely win every battle and lose the war (and there’s your Vietnam comparison).
I saw a report also in which FReepers were blaming ROE, when further investigation revealed it was do to other factors. Then guess what/who further report blamed? Take a look: McClatchy report by Jonathan Landay: Report: “Rules of engagement led to soldiers’ deaths.” A detailed follow up:
The lack of timely air support - was a consequence of the manpower and equipment shortages bequeathed by the Bush administrations failure to secure Afghanistan against a resurgence of the Taliban, al-Qaida and allied groups before turning to invade Iraq.
The denial of heavy artillery fire to those trapped in Ganjgal also has roots in the Bush administrations decision to divert resources to Iraq and the resulting stress on the U.S. military.
See the agenda there? What a crock.