Posted by: Lister | August 22, 2007

Maliki et Diem

No, I’ve not gone Latin.

Ngo Dinh Diem was a South Vietnamese President, who was removed by a coup — with the blessings of Kennedy et al. According to wiki, Ho Chi Minh’s response was: “I can scarcely believe the Americans would be so stupid.”

US feelings against Maliki aren’t quite so harsh. Yet. Bush Takes a Step Away From Maliki:

[…] top American diplomat in Baghdad, Ambassador Ryan C. Crocker, called political progress in Iraq “extremely disappointing” and warned that United States support for the Maliki government did not come with a “blank check.”

It was not quite the vote of no confidence delivered by Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, the Democratic chairman of the Armed Services Committee, who on Monday said Mr. Maliki should quit. But it was a striking attempt by the White House to distance itself from the Maliki government before September, when the president’s troop buildup faces an intense review on Capitol Hill.

[…] Experts say Mr. Bush does not appear to be trying to force Mr. Maliki out, if only because there is no obvious alternative. Rather, they say, the president’s remarks are aimed at a domestic audience. Back in January, Mr. Bush sold the troop buildup to the country as a plan that would tamp down violence and create “political breathing space” to allow the Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds to create a unity government.

Then Bush mentions Cambodia:

In the text, Mr. Bush also links withdrawal from Vietnam to the rise of the murderous Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia, and asserts that the American pullout caused pain and suffering for millions, saying, “Whatever your position in that debate, one unmistakable legacy of Vietnam is that the price of America’s withdrawal was paid by millions of innocent citizens whose agonies would add to our vocabulary new terms like ‘boat people,’ ‘re-education camps,’ and ‘killing fields.’ ”

Those assertions are already being criticized by Democrats, including the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, and at least one historian, Robert Dallek, a biographer of presidents Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon. Both said Mr. Bush was ignoring fundamental differences between the conflicts. Citing Cambodia in particular, Mr. Dallek said in an interview that the mayhem under the Khmer Rouge “was a consequence of our having gone into Cambodia and destabilized that country.”

[With links from Justin Raimondo. Read Allawi’s hit piece on Maliki.]

Let me be clear. Responsibility for the current mess in Iraq rests primarily with the Iraqi government, not with the United States. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has failed to take advantage of the Iraqi people’s desire for peaceful and productive lives and of the enormous commitment and sacrifices made by the United States and other nations.

What’s Arabic for “brown-nose”?



  1. So Bush wanted to stay in Vietnam? People don’t mention the US invaded South Vietnam.

  2. Bush regrets that John Kerry was let down in Vietnam. He wanted John Kerry to stay in Vietnam.

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