Monday, February 28, 2005

Start a war to quell internal political dissent? Impossible?

One of the often forgotten heroics of the Vietnamese people was that they defeated the French, the Americans, and finally the Chinese in their bid to install a corrupt and inefficient communist kleptocracy. As this article points out, the Chinese Government has systematically erased the history of this short and very bloody war with Vietnam. Although China ostensible invaded Vietnam to “punish” the Vietnamese for their overthrow of Pol Pot in Cambodia (a just action if there ever was one), most now believe the war was used mainly to shore up army support for Deng during a difficult political period.

In Deng’s defense, he did a hell of a lot of good for his country. Only by gaining complete political control was he able to restructure the economy and shut down inefficient state-run industries. He also had a lot to be worried about, since he had been left out in the cold before at great cost to the Chinese people.

I posted this article because it closely parallels Republican political use of war. Approval boosting wars have been a staple of Republican politics ever since Reagan’s little wars. Actions like Granada, had no political or strategic significance and yet helped to shore up support for the President. Over time, soldiers have come to support the Republicans out of habit since these presidents are frequently sending them into combat.

Read this bit from the times, it is very interesting.

1 Thoughts:

Blogger Doug said...

He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past. QED.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005 2:06:00 PM  

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