Yesterday our fearless leader dug up the corpse of the American war in Viet Nam and beat it with his best five iron. In his little pea brain the fall of Saigon brought on; 1. re-education camps, 2. Boat people's exodus, and 3. The Killing fields.
I'll give him #1. After any civil war there is period of adjustment in the defeated side. We threw many Southern leaders in jail, striped them of their right to vote, freed their valuable slaves, and imposed a reconstruction regime in the rebel states. No credible historian claims that Viet Nam imposed anything like a blood bath on their enemies, but instead held tight reign on locals out to even old scores.
#2 happened, but we have economic and political refugees coming to the US every day, and damn few of them are Vietnamese. The Viets that came now go home for vacations and to visit family. It would be hard to sell the evacuation of Vietnamese refugees as an act of the Hanoi government.
#3 The Killing Fields happened, just not in Viet Nam, where our war happened. We sponsored the overthrow of prince Norodom Sihanouk in a military coup because he ignored the North Vietnamese Army's stationing of troops and supplies in Cambodian territory. The thing is, we didn't realize that Norodom Sihanouk had been balancing Cambodia on a political knife edge for a decade or more. When the prince went into exile, civil war broke out, and the rest is the most tragic result of our misreading a foreign situation prior to the current Iraqi horror show. Like the Saudi hijackers of 911's mythical attachment to Baghdad, the administration is now selling the Cambodian Killing Fields as an adjunct to our defeat in Viet Nam. Viet Nam was the country that invaded Cambodia and stopped the slaughter. They understood the local situation, we didn't.
Once again Bush is either displaying his ignorance or acting the Stalinist with a historical re-write.
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