12/19/2007 (9:23 pm)
The Cultural Narrative about Vietnam says that America, wrongly concerned about Communist expansions that did not exist, invaded a country where it was not wanted, to fight against an indigenous army that was supported by all the people living in the surrounding countryside. Saddled with such an impossible burden, goes the story, American soldiers resorted to barbarism and drugs, shot civilians and their own officers, and returned home permanently broken. Having been beaten, America withdrew her troops, and as was inevitable from the start, the patriot Ho Chi Mihn united the country.
None of this is true.
Commentary Magazine contains a marvelous recounting of the Vietnam war drawing on facts that have been revealed since the war ended. The Cultural Narrative is wrong in every particular. Simply put: we won the war militarily, but lost our will, and in the end allowed murderers to conquer our allies. And after we left, every dire prediction about what would happen if Vietnam were lost came true.
If you still believe the Cultural Narrative, you owe it to yourself to read this account.