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View Diary: PBS, JFK, and why I'm a Dem (84 comments)

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  •  I agree there is plenty of blame to go around (1+ / 0-)
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    willyr

    While LBJ certainly has to take his share of the blame for deciding to escalate the war in 1965, his decision to do so was the logical result of continuing to follow a long standing American policy of supporting SVN against communist NVN.  As you indicate, this policy had been first established under Truman and subsequently supported by every president right through to Kennedy.  Over two decades, every one of these presidents made decisions to involve the US deeper into the Vietnamese quagmire and raise the political ante, thus making it ever harder for their successors to extract the United States from Vietnam.  At least LBJ finally recognized the folly of continued escalation after the roof fell in on his policy after the disastrous Tet Offensive in 1968.  His decision to not seek re-election in March 1968, de-escalate the bombing, and offering to pursue peace negotiations with the North was a recognition that the war could not be won militarily in a politically meaningful way.  Of course, as we now know, Nixon deliberately scuttled LBJ's attempt to reach a conclusion to the war as part of his '68 election strategy by secretly convincing the South Vietnamese to drag their heels on the peace negotiations.  As a result, another seven years of bloodshed and carnage followed.

    These Republican gluttons of priviledge are cold men ... They want a return of the Wall Street economic dictatorship -- Harry Truman

    by Laborguy on Wed Nov 13, 2013 at 12:37:06 PM PST

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