Joseph Goebbels, Adolf Hitler’s successful minister of propaganda, said, “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. . . truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the state.”
It is sad that Americans, unlike those of 1787, are so academically lazy as to believe propaganda without verifying its accuracy. As an example, a local school teacher recently wrote that it was not a violation of the Constitution for President Obama to change Obamacare legislated requirements.
A recent columnist’s words provide several examples of “big lies” being used to justify political decisions:
The Congressional Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq Resolution of 2002,” approved by a majority of both parties, did not mention WMD in the majority of 23 justifications identified. However, was it a lie by either Congress or President George W. Bush to include the WMD issue when the intelligence services of United States, Britain, France, Germany, Jordan and Israel each conclude Iraq was producing WMD?
To top this, al-Qaeda has now reported finding a poison gas manufacturing plant.
This big lie overlooks the truth that in 2008, the battles had been won. Terrorist attacks were rare and American casualties were nearly eliminated. All that remained was a stabilizing occupying force, as is needed to successfully terminate any war.
Why did President Franklin D. Roosevelt keep our Army in Germany and Japan for years after World War II stopped? He knew the Hitler youth and SS troops in Germany and the kamikazes in Japan would fight unless suppressed for an extended period. Those who know war history have known that since our troops were prematurely pulled from Iraq, the current fall of Iraq was only a question of when. For anybody who believes the Iraqis would not sign a Status of Forces Agreement, I will sell you my Brooklyn Bridge.
This is a continual and painful lie to the thousands who were there in 1968 and know better. The lie begins with the 1968 Tet Offensive. The cleanup totally destroyed the Viet Cong guerilla force and forced the NVN army survivors to retreat home. Pathetically, the American media steadily reported it as a South Vietnam defeat. The NVA attacked again in 1972 and was beaten by the South Vietnam army with little participation by the United States Army.
As reported to the Wall Street Journal by Colonel Bui Tin of the NVA general staff, “visits to Hanoi by people like Jane Fonda and former Attorney General Ramsey Clark and ministers gave us confidence that we should hold on in the face of battlefield reverses.”
Neither Presidents Johnson nor Nixon possessed the leadership to overcome the rantings of the peaceniks and Congress prevented any assistance of the south against the 1975 attack, so the north took control in April.
Summary: Americans never lost a battle in the entire war; American death loss by 1968, when we had effectively won the war, was 38,000 and after seven years of peace negotiations it became 58,000.
The cost to the residents: 65,000 South Vietnamese executed for cooperating with Americans, unknown South Vietnam military dead, 2 million Cambodians dead, unknown thousands of Vietnamese dead by starvation, disease, suicide and “disappeared,” 2 million escaped by boat, and 1 million held for extended periods in “education camps” and jails.
Are you embarrassed?
Earl Heal is a Vacaville resident and member of The Right Stuff Committee, a committee of the Solano County Republican Party. Reach him at email@example.com.