Saturday, November 18, 2006

Bush goes to Vietnam...

...about 40 years later than many of his generation had to, but I suppose I should give him some credit. Maybe he was trying to make up for the time he was AWOL from his Air National Guard duty.

It is amazing how someone could talk about the American Vietnam experience and draw the lesson that we quit too soon:
“We’ll succeed unless we quit,” Bush said. “The Maliki government is going to make it unless the coalition leaves before they have a chance to make it.”
And what's so great about helping the Maliki government "make it" anyway? They are infested with Shiite death squads and very chummy with Iran. Once again let me quote Riverbend on what all our effort in Iraq has bought us:
“Ladies and gentlemen- to your right is the Iraqi Ministry of Oil, to your left is the Dawry refinery… Each of you get this, a gift bag containing a 3 by 3 color poster of Al Sayid Muqtada Al Sadr (Long May He Live And Prosper), an Ayatollah Sistani t-shirt and a map of Iran, to scale, redrawn with the Islamic Republic of South Iraq. Also… Hey you! You- the female in the back- is that a lock of hair I see? Cover it up or stay home.”
This occupation is completely screwed. It's a hopeless failure, but even if by some extraordinary effort it did "succeed" in propping up Maliki's regime, we'd still end up losing strategically. At least in Vietnam, there was perhaps a reasonable expectation that if we had helped the South Vietnamese win, that regime would have been friendly to us (though I admit my knowledge is pretty sketchy here). I have no such illusions about any regime that emerges from the current chaos in Iraq.

Vast Left Wing Conspiracy has a nice reaction to Bush's Vietnam trip:
And what's left to add, when Sgt. Awolski says this?
"Laura and I were talking about how amazing it is that we’re here in Vietnam," the president said.
Why doesn't he toss in the punchline, "Dick Cheney would have been here, but he had other priorities"? Because nobody could fucking fail to see what a sick joke these guys are, and how perverse it is that this clown is representing us — or, in fact, doing any job more demanding than clearing brush from his goddamn ranch.
P.S.: The AP report on Bush's Vietnam trip contained this little detail:
Interest in Bush’s arrival seemed subdued compared with the massive, joyous crowds that stayed up late for President Clinton’s unannounced midnight flight into Hanoi’s international airport in 2000.
Oh my! No Tony Snow party favors for that reporter!

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