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Another Grunt's Rant on Iraq

Jules Crittenden has a compelling post in which he includes sentiments by Larry Gwin, a Vietnam veteran, who writes that the Democrats' surrender plan is giving him flashbacks to when he and other soldiers and marines were forced to retreat from Vietnam. It took Gwin years to deal with surrendering, but the Democrats efforts to repeat retreat is bringing the shame that he felt back to the surface again. Here's a portion:

Whether you like our being in Iraq or not, it's clear that most of the people want "out." After all, who would ever want to fight a war? But if push comes to shove, would Congress stop supporting the troops, or vote to cut off the funding necessary to continue the mission, or vote to surrender over there? I doubt it.

But that's what the Democrats are trying to do.

They're trying to pull the plug on our efforts, not by voting to end the war, or expressly cutting off any spending for it, but by suggesting that funding be tied to a specific timetable for withdrawal.

And that, in my mind, is surrender. As soon as you tell the enemy that you are going to leave, all they have to do is sit back and wait for you to leave. And, if they really hate you, they can start sniping at you as you go, when you're most vulnerable to an attack. A retrograde maneuver is one of the most difficult tactical missions an army is ever faced with. A retreat, and that's what this would be, requires stealth, continual pressure on the forces opposing yours, and lots of political spin.

What the Democrats are doing is akin to what we did in Vietnam by signing a peace agreement with the North Vietnamese, tantamount to bailing out on our allies' without their concurrence, then departing with absolutely no intention of ever coming back, no matter what the North Vietnamese did. Congress also cut off financial support for South Vietnam after our departure. And sure as hell, as soon as we left, the North Vietnamese attacked south in full force, and for two more years, the two sides pounded each other until the more determined North, supported by Russia and China, won the war. And we veterans here at home who had fought and seen so many of our buddies die over there, had to keep our mouths shut and just take it.

And we felt the shame of defeat. Not a defeat we'd suffered, but a defeat of our national will. And that enraged me and made me feel ashamed. It took me more than forty years to get over it, and I still simmer when I think about it.

And we're going to do it again, thanks to the Democrats in Congress.

The Democrats who are trying their damnedest to surrender to al Qaeda in Iraq won't understand what Mr. Gwin is saying to them, and even if they did, they wouldn't listen. Read the rest of Mr. Gwin's reactions at Forward Movement.

Comments (14)

Just like they ignore th... (Below threshold)
Rob LA Ca.:

Just like they ignore the words of a letter sent from Iraq to Harry Reid stating:


Democrats shrug shoulders , who cares we're going to gain 20 seats!

Rob.They don't car... (Below threshold)


They don't care to respond to message that don't match their current train of though. I send my Senator a message every few months and I always request a response but I never get one. I guess if I told him that he was doing a good job and I supported his efforts all i would get is a donation letter so maybe I'm not missing much.

The democrat party listened... (Below threshold)

The democrat party listened to Hanoi Jane and Hanoi John in the 60-70's and surrendered their honor to the radical communist faction in the U.S. Without honor you are nothing. Now an accurate description of the democrat party and they're followers.

I remember exactly where I ... (Below threshold)

I remember exactly where I was when I heard Kennedy had been shot, when I heard Elvis was gone, when I heard Challenger had exploded, and when I first saw that "Last Helicopter" picture on the front of The Daily Texan. The other incidents left me sad; the Helicopter picture left me mad as Hell. Our Iraq vets deserve better (but then, so did we.) No soldier deserves to come back from a war to be told "Oh, never mind, it wasn't important. Thanks for your time anyway. Sorry your friends died for nothing." No Gold Star parent needs to be told "Never mind. It wasn't important to begin with. Sorry about that." At least Charlie didn't follow us home; the jihadis will, and I hope when the heads start rolling some key Dhimmicrats are first in line.

I was an instructor at the ... (Below threshold)

I was an instructor at the US Army Infantry School at Ft. Benning GA the day the last helicopter left. A bunch of us met at the NCO club that night swilled a beer or two and remembered lost buddies and thought of ARVN's we worked with, Kit Carsons, and civilian friends left behind. Meanwhile liberal congressmen hailed the cut of funding as a great victory while america sat complacently on their collective ass. Jane Fonda, John Kerry, et al returned to civilian life and fame after clearly violating US statutes wrt providing aid and comfort to the enemy. No prosecution, we needed to "heal". Heal???? Yeah, for everyone except us dogfaces and jarheads. And in the end, over three million people died in Cambodia and Vietnam. I guess Uncle Ho and Pol Pot didn't get the memo on "healing". Have you noticed that the liberals NEVER want to talk about what their socialist brethern wrought in Southeast Asia???

And now, the same liberals are at work again, except it's not just liberals, it's the entire democratic party. Good guys like FDR, Truman, and Scoop Jackson would never have put up with this. Joe Liebermann has showns he belongs in this group as well. And instead of it being driven by protests in the street, it's engine is a group of guilt-ridden billionaires and a handful of self-appointed bloggers who claim to speak for "the people".

For those who weren't around to witness the previous betrayal and accompanying slaughter please pull up a seat, get your vitawater and granola bar and enjoy the show. A whole new generation of GI's will be denegrated and forgotten, the military will be allowed to fall into disrepair again, Iraqi's by the thousands, maybe more, will meet the same fate as the Vietnamese and Cambodians. But what the hell, no skin off your ass 'cus BUSH LIED!!!

Unfortunately this time the enemy isn't locally-focused. He'll have the second-largest oil reserves in the world to fund his adventures to include buying nuke technology. The geographic location of his new home will provide control over the region and directly threaten Isreal to an extent never before seen. But what the hell, MARCHROVEOUTINHANDCUFFS!

And in the end you show yourselves to be the short-sighted fools you are. It's more important to let illegal aliens into "sanctuary cities" that enforce immigration laws that protect us all. It's more important for your "rights" to not be infringed upon by the Patriot Act than to allow for surveylance of suspected enemy operatives, of course your rights have never actually been trampled but CHENEYHALLIBURTON! And of course when the next attack occurs it'll be everyone's fault but yours. After all, you are patriotic, even when giving the enemy classified info via the WaPost and NYTimes, and a date we'll be surrendering. But DONTQUESTIONMYPATRIOTISM.

Pull your chair up and get the eats ready. Call Stanley Karnow and Oliver Stone. The show will soon begin. Of course you'll probably not be watching. Too busy buying carbon credits and telling others what vehicle they can drive....you've moved on to important stuff.

To my fellow vietnam vets (and other vets as well) thsnks for pickin' off the leeches, eatin "ham and muthas", burnin' sh*t, and all the little things. I don't need to mention the bigger ones.

"The Democrats who are tryi... (Below threshold)

"The Democrats who are trying their damnedest to surrender to al Qaeda in Iraq.."

If we 'surrender' to al Qaeda in Iraq, what will happen to al Qaeda in Iraq?

The other day I provided my theory; now I would like to hear yours and any one else's.

If we surrender to Al Quaed... (Below threshold)

If we surrender to Al Quaeda in Iraq, what will happen to Al Quaeda in Iraq?

AQ wins a greater proganda victory than the defeat of the Soviets in Afghanistan ever was.

This would cause in no particular order...

1. Civilian deaths in Iraq will sky-rocket as AQ comes to power and tries to kill all that don't bow-down to them.
2. The mother of all refugee crisis will occur as millions flee Iraq to get away from AQ.
3. Regional Instability will ensue as AQ tries to topple Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, etc. World economic impact will be horrendous
4. AQ efforts in Afghanistan will surge, possibly putting the Taliban back in charge.
4a. Serious effort to topple the Pakistani governmtent will ensue with goal of seizing thier nuclear weapons.
5. Solid democracies in modern Islamic societies (Turkey, Indonesia, Egypt, etc) will be threatened as their Jihadists receive additional support from AQ and are encouraged by AQ's successes.
6. AQ and associates will be emboldened to increase activities in Europe and the U.S.
7. AQ and extremist activites in the various 'Stans' of the former Soviet Union will increase, causing increased instability in emerging democracies around the Caspian Sea region.

That should be good for a start.

In case anybody missed Barn... (Below threshold)
wave man:

In case anybody missed BarneyG2000's "theory" on Iraq, here it is:

Lorie, I think it is a great idea to have an honest discussion on what we think may happen if we leave Iraq. Here is what I think will happen to al Qaeda in Iraq.

Al Qaeda in Iraq is made of foreign fighters. They are not aligned with the Ba'athist. They are responsible for some truly terrible attacks mostly on Shiite but also on Sunni.

The day we leave the Shiite controlled security forces and the Shiite militias will descend on al Qaeda members like locus. They will be rounded up, tortured, burned alive and then shot in the head.

The Sunnis will not object nor provide refuge to al Qaeda.

If you want to get rid of al Qaeda in Iraq then redeploy the troops.

Posted by: BarneyG2000 at April 30, 2007 07:17 PM

I second Matt's assessment with one addition... here's what the 911 Commission report said about Bin Laden's assessment in 1996 of our retreat in Somalia:

"In August 1996, Bin Ladin had issued his own self-styled fatwa calling on Muslims to drive American soldiers out of Saudi Arabia.The long, disjointed document condemned the Saudi monarchy for allowing the presence of an army of infidels in a land with the sites most sacred to Islam, and celebrated recent suicide bombings of American military facilities in the Kingdom. It praised the 1983 suicide bombing in Beirut that killed 241 U.S. Marines, the 1992 bombing in Aden, and especially the 1993 firefight in Somalia after which the United States "left the area carrying disappointment, humiliation, defeat and your dead with you."3 Bin Ladin said in his ABC interview that he and his followers had been preparing in Somalia for another long struggle, like that against the Soviets in Afghanistan, but "the United States rushed out of Somalia in shame and disgrace." Citing the Soviet army's withdrawal from Afghanistan as proof that a ragged army of dedicated Muslims could overcome a superpower, he told the interviewer: "We are certain that we shall--with the grace of Allah--prevail over the Americans." He went on to warn that "If the present injustice continues . . . , it will inevitably move the battle to American soil."4 Plans to attack the United States were developed with unwavering single mindedness throughout the 1990s. Bin Ladin saw himself as called "to follow in the footsteps of the Messenger and to communicate his message to all nations,"5 and to serve as the rallying point and organizer of a new kind of war to destroy America and bring the world to Islam.

Sorry, computer glitch p... (Below threshold)
wave man:

Sorry, computer glitch posted above before finished, not all formatting correct ...

How will Al Queda's assessment of the US be any different 11 year's later if we pull out now?

Bin Laden's words: "We are certain that we shall--with the grace of Allah--prevail over the Americans." He went on to warn that "If the present injustice continues . . . , it will inevitably move the battle to American soil."

You are gonna trust the Shiites to flush out and destroy Al Queda? They never stood up to the Ba'athist minority when they were in charge, and now they're suddenly gonna grow some gonards? I doubt it.

And the link to that sectio... (Below threshold)
wave man:

And the link to that section of the 911 Commission Report.

This would cause in no p... (Below threshold)

This would cause in no particular order...

Every one of Matt's scenarios is based on the false premise that AQ is powerful in Iraq. The reality is that they're hated in Iraq, by both the Sunnis and Shiites, and they represent only about 3% of the fighters there now. If someone wants to suppose a future scenario, it needs to be rooted in current fact.

Brian, in your search for t... (Below threshold)

Brian, in your search for the "facts" please don't forget that according to General Patreus' latest testimony (the one Nancy couldn't fit into her busy schedule) AQ is committing far and away the bulk of the violence, while being composed of approxiamtely 80 to 90% non-Iraqis.

"Powerful," is a relative t... (Below threshold)

"Powerful," is a relative term and changes very rapidly. Powerful compared to what?

The Bolesheviks in Czarist Russia waren't very powerful.
The Nazis party in Germany weren't very powerful compared.
The Fascists in Italy weren't very powerful.
The Communists in Cuba weren't very powerful.


mullah cimoc say ameriki ne... (Below threshold)
mullah cimoc:

mullah cimoc say ameriki needing for remember vietnam war ending.

when last helicopter flying away the usa embassey how long before the gun of war going silent?

Answer: 3 day and now peace more than 30 years among vietnam people. back then time usa govt and control media say the same lying excuse for continue the kill.

special important: not the single viet cong coming for attack amerika during all this thirty year.

now patriotc ameriki man him needing for destroy israeli spy operations in usa starting with elimination the necon sending him to iraq for living in baghdad with mccain tell evryone how safe.






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