Here we go (or maybe don’t go) again

I have just heard an American politician argue that it was the precipitateness of the US withdrawal from Vietnam that caused the dire sequels, notably the massacres in Cambodia and the hundreds of thousands of ‘boat people’. A mugger might as rightly argue that they had to keep clubbing their victim because if they woke up they might act like they were in terrible pain.

The fact is, it was the American treatment of south east Asia more than anything else that created the catastrophic conditions in Vietnam (a victorious dictatorship) and Cambodia (complete social breakdown) in which disastrous reactions were inevitable as soon as the US removed the layer of state violence that kept the underlying mass of festering conflicts and chaos in check. In the case of Iraq, US policy has not only removed the very resources that would have prevented the simultaneous anti-US resistance, the anti-al Qaeda hostility and the Sunni-Shiite civil war but also both caused and justified these very reactions.

Heck of a job, Bushy.

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