The Vietnam War
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22-05-2013, 01:02 PM
RE: The Vietnam War
(22-05-2013 12:34 PM)cjlr Wrote:  Let's at least get our background in place...

The US did suppot the Viet Minh - but only until the Japanese left. Then they washed their hands of the place. Ho and the gang first got Soviet support to fight the French, who tried to reoccupy the country (against the wishes and advice of the USA, mind!). They retrenched to the south for a while, but buggered out in 1954 (to clusterfuck around in Algeria instead). At which point Diem was in charge in the south, and both he and Ho ran fraudulent, farcical elections (the "we won more votes than there are voters" kind of elections) to 'affirm' their right to be in charge.

Of course, by then the North Vietnamese were officially Communist (and had the requisite street cred, having executed hundreds of thousands of 'landowners' and 'capitalists', ie anyone whose neighbours had grudges; the South also executed communists, but only tens of thousands), and the anti-colonial USA had been replaced by the paranoid anti-communist USA, who (rather inexorably, at this point) started assisting and advising the South. Of course, then Diem was assassinated (for being a corrupt dictatorial jerk) and the North Vietnamese escalated their insurgency in the south, which the US now had to oppose, or else lose face to the Soviets (and who could dare allow a proxy gap?).

Thus, the Vietnam war. Which, like, say, the entire cold war, had nothing to do with ideology and everything to do with "maximize our influence by whatever means possible", on both sides.

History! The more you know...

You forgot to mention the assassination campaigns led by diem which were coordinated by the CIA (declassified docs exist on this) Since Diem was a puppet and was a dictatorial jerk as requested by the U.S. became so hated by the people of the south that protests erupted, most notable were the monks that protested, one setting himself on fire. You also forgot to mention that diem was assassinated by the U.S. (also declassified documents. An absence of a vote became a moot point since not only could the U.S. and south vietnam defeat the communists of the south and north, the south anti-communists alone were a complete walk in the park. What is also forgotten is that the U.S. bombed the south more than the north because there were many communists in the south, not just the north. Once the U.S. left the communists of the south took over very easily and thus reunited with the North.

The cluster fuck in Algeria didn't turn out to well either. The Soviet Union assistance to Vietnam was not on the same universe as what the U.S. had to do and they still lost. All the Soviets and Chinese had to do is write a blank check. The U.S. couldn't just do that because the communists were more popular in the south and the north.
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22-05-2013, 04:46 PM
RE: The Vietnam War
(22-05-2013 12:34 PM)cjlr Wrote:  Let's at least get our background in place...

History! The more you know...
Wrong wrong wrong wrong!

Haven't you learned by now that the US is automatically the bad guy 100% of the time, while {insert any other country here} is automatically the good guy 100% of the time?

Sheeesh, when will you people learn?


I can't believe I got all that off with a straight face...

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22-05-2013, 06:05 PM (This post was last modified: 22-05-2013 06:09 PM by cjlr.)
RE: The Vietnam War
(22-05-2013 04:46 PM)LostLocke Wrote:  Wrong wrong wrong wrong!

Haven't you learned by now that the US is automatically the bad guy 100% of the time, while {insert any other country here} is automatically the good guy 100% of the time?

Sheeesh, when will you people learn?

NOPE. North Vietnam was the shittier of the two.


Any country which produces THIS is not all bad.



Fuckin righteous.
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23-05-2013, 06:45 AM (This post was last modified: 23-05-2013 06:58 AM by Julius.)
RE: The Vietnam War
Why are they Fighting?

The saddest thing about the Vietnam War was that most Americans never bothered to find out who the Vietnamese were, or why they were fighting. Instead, Americans bought the story that we were fighting a monolithic communist menace whose tentacles stretched from Moscow to Hanoi. As a result, Americans viewed North Vietnam as a Soviet Puppet Regime similar to the East European puppet regimes of Romania, Poland, East Germany etc... This couldn't be further from the truth. Vietnam has never been any countries Puppet Regime.

Sure, the Chinese, the French, the British, the Japanese came into Vietnam and tried to exert control, but they were all eventually driven out with bloody dispatch. The Vietnamese never stopped fighting. And then...the United States thought that they could where the others couldn't, and so they double down in 1954 after the French got their arses whooped. Then the US doubled down again in 1957 and installed it's own puppet regime. Then the United States doubled-down again in 1964 when they went to war after their puppet dictator had been assassinated. By 1968, the Tet Offensive launched by Vietnam made the US realized that:

1. The Vietnamese People - both North and South Vietnamese - hated the USA.
2. There was no way to win.

By the end of the Tet Offensive, the USA and South Vietnam Troops had been driven out of the countryside where the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Army Guerillas were once again free to set up their own government, collect taxes, re-distribute land to the peasents and operate at their leisure. The South Vietnamese and US troops were too busy protecting the cities to be effective in the countryside.

While the North Vietnamese and Vietcong may have lost more men in the Tet Offensive than did the USA and South Vietnam, they now controlled most of South Vietnam for they controlled the countryside. The USA would claim that the Tet Offensive was a disaster for the communists because the death rates were 4-to-1 in favor of the USA and South Vietnamese Army during the Tet Offensive. But...what do these death rates matter - for when it was [/align]all over, the US had evacuated and the Communists held the ground?

The USA claimed the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese were "Decimated" as a result of the Tet Offensive - yet the American Killed in Action rates were higher than ever and stayed that way as long as Americans remained in Vietnam. Hard to believe that so many Americans could be killed by a dead enemy, huh?

And never....in all of this debacle, did Americans ever ask of the Vietnamese, "Why are they Fighting?" And that's why the USA lost the Vietnam War.

[Image: NamCasualtyRate_zpsce3f9eb4.jpg]
The more soldiers sent to Vietnam, the faster they died.

[Image: KeystoneHultonGetty1969.jpg]
Why did even old women choose to fight?
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23-05-2013, 08:51 AM
RE: The Vietnam War
(23-05-2013 06:45 AM)Julius Wrote:  Why are they Fighting?

The saddest thing about the Vietnam War was that most Americans never bothered to find out who the Vietnamese were, or why they were fighting. Instead, Americans bought the story that we were fighting a monolithic communist menace whose tentacles stretched from Moscow to Hanoi. As a result, Americans viewed North Vietnam as a Soviet Puppet Regime similar to the East European puppet regimes of Romania, Poland, East Germany etc... This couldn't be further from the truth. Vietnam has never been any countries Puppet Regime.

Sure, the Chinese, the French, the British, the Japanese came into Vietnam and tried to exert control, but they were all eventually driven out with bloody dispatch. The Vietnamese never stopped fighting. And then...the United States thought that they could where the others couldn't, and so they double down in 1954 after the French got their arses whooped. Then the US doubled down again in 1957 and installed it's own puppet regime. Then the United States doubled-down again in 1964 when they went to war after their puppet dictator had been assassinated. By 1968, the Tet Offensive launched by Vietnam made the US realized that:

1. The Vietnamese People - both North and South Vietnamese - hated the USA.
2. There was no way to win.

By the end of the Tet Offensive, the USA and South Vietnam Troops had been driven out of the countryside where the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese Army Guerillas were once again free to set up their own government, collect taxes, re-distribute land to the peasents and operate at their leisure. The South Vietnamese and US troops were too busy protecting the cities to be effective in the countryside.

While the North Vietnamese and Vietcong may have lost more men in the Tet Offensive than did the USA and South Vietnam, they now controlled most of South Vietnam for they controlled the countryside. The USA would claim that the Tet Offensive was a disaster for the communists because the death rates were 4-to-1 in favor of the USA and South Vietnamese Army during the Tet Offensive. But...what do these death rates matter - for when it was [/align]all over, the US had evacuated and the Communists held the ground?

The USA claimed the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese were "Decimated" as a result of the Tet Offensive - yet the American Killed in Action rates were higher than ever and stayed that way as long as Americans remained in Vietnam. Hard to believe that so many Americans could be killed by a dead enemy, huh?

And never....in all of this debacle, did Americans ever ask of the Vietnamese, "Why are they Fighting?" And that's why the USA lost the Vietnam War.

[Image: NamCasualtyRate_zpsce3f9eb4.jpg]
The more soldiers sent to Vietnam, the faster they died.

[Image: KeystoneHultonGetty1969.jpg]
Why did even old women choose to fight?

I agree, the number of losses on each side is not a sole factor in determining who "won" look at the number of russian losses in their battles against the Nazis for example. The americans like to save face and pretend they won though. Rolleyes
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23-05-2013, 09:28 AM
RE: The Vietnam War
1. The Vietnamese People - both North and South Vietnamese - hated the USA.
2. There was no way to win.

Sorry, I have to agree with 2 and disagree with 1.

First off, just to level set, I spent part of '66 and most of '67 in that festering pesthole of the world, mostly carrying a plastic rifle around - a really lousy Made-In-USA piece of crap far inferior to the Chinese made products of the other side (How's that for present day irony?)

There really was no way to win - not with that idiot sitting in the big house in DC calling the shots from ten thousand miles away. And with the idea that we had to fight "fair." If the other side called "King's X" we had to stop fighting and let him go. We didn't, but that was the official rule. If we got too far ahead, we had to stop and let the other side "catch up."

It was an idiotic way to fight a war. I saw a million tons of bombs and shells dumped into the jungle because the Navy and Air Force had a quota to drop every night, and did. Once, our company was camped for a few days in a deserted valley, far far from anybody, let alone NVA, and had to fire so many rounds during the night into the surrounding and totally empty hills. Probably a million dollars of tax payer money for the useless use of mortar and 106 rounds just to follow the "rules".

So, given the rules, there was no way to win. And if we had won, what? The people in the bulk, just wanted to grow their rice and live their miserable lives. Which brings me to the first statement...

I noticed very little hate for us among either north or south people. Going through a village that had been mostly flattened during the last fight, I would see people beginning to rebuild their houses and huts - just like an ant hill that has been kicked over and over. They would answer questions, point out directions in a normal manner. At no time did I see anyone go berserk and charge armed men because his family and life to date had been destroyed. I certainly would have. Again, I think it was just fatalism - to them, shit happens and this is just life as we know it.

The fact is, that most had no idea of why we were there. War and other unfortunate happenstances were commonplace in their history and this was just another one to have to get through. They had no concept of Democracy and probably wouldn't have cared if someone had sat down and explained it. If the Queen of Sheba had marched in and set up a Monarchy, they would have shrugged it off in the same manner - new ruler, same rules, so what's the difference to us?.

Asia has a different outlook on life than Westerners, and that is squared for uneducated people over there.

For me, my very unchristian hatred was reserved for Johnson, McNamara and Westmoreland - none of which had the skills to run a paintball game, let alone a new kind of war.
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23-05-2013, 10:04 AM
RE: The Vietnam War
(23-05-2013 09:28 AM)morlock Wrote:  1. The Vietnamese People - both North and South Vietnamese - hated the USA.
2. There was no way to win.

Sorry, I have to agree with 2 and disagree with 1.

First off, just to level set, I spent part of '66 and most of '67 in that festering pesthole of the world, mostly carrying a plastic rifle around - a really lousy Made-In-USA piece of crap far inferior to the Chinese made products of the other side (How's that for present day irony?)

There really was no way to win - not with that idiot sitting in the big house in DC calling the shots from ten thousand miles away. And with the idea that we had to fight "fair." If the other side called "King's X" we had to stop fighting and let him go. We didn't, but that was the official rule. If we got too far ahead, we had to stop and let the other side "catch up."

It was an idiotic way to fight a war. I saw a million tons of bombs and shells dumped into the jungle because the Navy and Air Force had a quota to drop every night, and did. Once, our company was camped for a few days in a deserted valley, far far from anybody, let alone NVA, and had to fire so many rounds during the night into the surrounding and totally empty hills. Probably a million dollars of tax payer money for the useless use of mortar and 106 rounds just to follow the "rules".

So, given the rules, there was no way to win. And if we had won, what? The people in the bulk, just wanted to grow their rice and live their miserable lives. Which brings me to the first statement...

I noticed very little hate for us among either north or south people. Going through a village that had been mostly flattened during the last fight, I would see people beginning to rebuild their houses and huts - just like an ant hill that has been kicked over and over. They would answer questions, point out directions in a normal manner. At no time did I see anyone go berserk and charge armed men because his family and life to date had been destroyed. I certainly would have. Again, I think it was just fatalism - to them, shit happens and this is just life as we know it.

The fact is, that most had no idea of why we were there. War and other unfortunate happenstances were commonplace in their history and this was just another one to have to get through. They had no concept of Democracy and probably wouldn't have cared if someone had sat down and explained it. If the Queen of Sheba had marched in and set up a Monarchy, they would have shrugged it off in the same manner - new ruler, same rules, so what's the difference to us?.

Asia has a different outlook on life than Westerners, and that is squared for uneducated people over there.

For me, my very unchristian hatred was reserved for Johnson, McNamara and Westmoreland - none of which had the skills to run a paintball game, let alone a new kind of war.

It's always fascinating to have some first-hand accounts!

By the 60s, the Vietnamese had essentially been at war (a guerilla war, so there were no "safe" areas) for over twenty years. After a generation of that, it's no surprise fatalism was the default attitude.
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23-05-2013, 10:16 AM
RE: The Vietnam War
The North Vietnamese had better generals and better war planners. The books these guys write on guerilla warfare are some of the most read in the world on that topic.

The Syrian government is now starting that phase, it has it's own people in Hezbollah on the lebanese side to help surround the flow of arms to rebels, and it has it's own guerilla force along with volunteers/militia dotted through out key area to monitor movements, and Iran and Russia to continually arm them. The Syrian military is using guerilla tactics and conventional tactics as a two pronged style attack. The U.S. will step into that shit pile very soon. get that popcorn with some extra butter on it folks.
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23-05-2013, 10:22 AM
RE: The Vietnam War
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23-05-2013, 10:52 AM
RE: The Vietnam War
(23-05-2013 09:28 AM)morlock Wrote:  1. The Vietnamese People - both North and South Vietnamese - hated the USA.
2. There was no way to win.

Sorry, I have to agree with 2 and disagree with 1.

First off, just to level set, I spent part of '66 and most of '67 in that festering pesthole of the world, mostly carrying a plastic rifle around - a really lousy Made-In-USA piece of crap far inferior to the Chinese made products of the other side (How's that for present day irony?)

There really was no way to win - not with that idiot sitting in the big house in DC calling the shots from ten thousand miles away. And with the idea that we had to fight "fair." If the other side called "King's X" we had to stop fighting and let him go. We didn't, but that was the official rule. If we got too far ahead, we had to stop and let the other side "catch up."

It was an idiotic way to fight a war. I saw a million tons of bombs and shells dumped into the jungle because the Navy and Air Force had a quota to drop every night, and did. Once, our company was camped for a few days in a deserted valley, far far from anybody, let alone NVA, and had to fire so many rounds during the night into the surrounding and totally empty hills. Probably a million dollars of tax payer money for the useless use of mortar and 106 rounds just to follow the "rules".

So, given the rules, there was no way to win. And if we had won, what? The people in the bulk, just wanted to grow their rice and live their miserable lives. Which brings me to the first statement...

I noticed very little hate for us among either north or south people. Going through a village that had been mostly flattened during the last fight, I would see people beginning to rebuild their houses and huts - just like an ant hill that has been kicked over and over. They would answer questions, point out directions in a normal manner. At no time did I see anyone go berserk and charge armed men because his family and life to date had been destroyed. I certainly would have. Again, I think it was just fatalism - to them, shit happens and this is just life as we know it.

The fact is, that most had no idea of why we were there. War and other unfortunate happenstances were commonplace in their history and this was just another one to have to get through. They had no concept of Democracy and probably wouldn't have cared if someone had sat down and explained it. If the Queen of Sheba had marched in and set up a Monarchy, they would have shrugged it off in the same manner - new ruler, same rules, so what's the difference to us?.

Asia has a different outlook on life than Westerners, and that is squared for uneducated people over there.

For me, my very unchristian hatred was reserved for Johnson, McNamara and Westmoreland - none of which had the skills to run a paintball game, let alone a new kind of war.

Wow! You were over there but won't answer the Big Question: "Why did they fight?". Much less, you haven't even given serious consideration as to who you were fighting. I mean, when you say that you saw very little hate when you walked through the villages you flattened I am astounded - flabbergasted! What, did you expect these people to start shouting at you when you had guns, helicopters and artillery and they didn't...and they couldn't even hide?

Also, you say that they wouldn't have understood Democracy...how the hell would you know? What the hell kind of candor do you think you'll get from a people who are afraid you could go go apeshit and shoot up their fellow villagers like what happened at Mai Lai? I can see you now, "Hi...I'm the Guy who just leveled your village, let's talk Political Theory!"

Also, don't shit yourself that you or the United States of America were offering the Vietnamese people Democracy - or anything else of value. The US installed a Military Dictatorship which not only wiped out the locally-elected village councils, bit raised taxes and started integrating a lot of the land back into colonial estates once the United States Army relocated them from their farms to camps in the cities.

Want to know why the US lost the Vietnam War? Look in the mirror - that's the guy who just won't ask the Big Question! Why did they fight?
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