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The Supreme Court Failed Us On Vietnam

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The Supreme Court Failed Us On Vietnam

14 HOURS AGO Jacob G. Hornberger

With last weeks’s beginning of Ken Burns’ new documentary about the Vietnam War, the war will be brought back to the front burner for national discussion and debate.

There is one thing that is crystal clear and indisputable about the U.S. intervention into Vietnam’s civil war: The intervention was illegal under our form of government. That’s because it was waged in violation of the U.S. Constitution, the document that sets forth the powers of U.S. officials, including those in the military and the CIA.

When the federal government was called into existence by the Constitution, its powers were limited to those set forth in the document itself. If a power isn’t enumerated, then it cannot lawfully be exercised.

The Constitution does not give the power to initiate war to the president. The Framers and the American people who ratified the Constitution did not want the president or the military making that decision. That’s why the Constitution delegates the power to declare war to Congress, the elected representatives of the American people.  :snip: 

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The Tragedy of the PBS-Ken Burns Version of the Vietnam War

Via Jonathan

 My own views on the Vietnam war haven't changed much in the intervening half-century, since my assignment in Vietnam with Special Forces, but I am called, today, a "revisionist" by some who have never served our country.  I have subsequently learned, thanks in part to Burns's history, that a "revisionist" is anyone who opposes the Communist Party line, so I guess I can live with that.


 Ken Burns, in his new PBS series, correctly points to the Vietnam War as a source of the polarization in our society today.  And he correctly urges us to revisit, understand, and come to grips with details making up that history through civil (as opposed to raucous) discourse.  He apparently believes he is presenting a fair picture of that history and that if we see it as the "tragedy" he paints, we will align our views with his so as to restore a more cohesive society. :snip:  https://freenorthcarolina.blogspot.com/2017/09/via-jonathan-my-own-views-on-vietnam.html

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The Vietnam Documentary And Military Lessons

by Bing West

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Military History Working Group at Hoover concentrates upon logic, facts, and trends communicated via the written word. At the same time, more people in all strata of society are basing their judgments upon social media and digital images. Consider: almost 60 million people watched Steven Spielberg and Tom Hank’s Band of Brothers miniseries. Video attracts audiences one thousand times larger than bestselling books.

Movies aim at shaping a visceral emotion, not rational thinking. Directors speak of movie moments, when an actor utters a line that we all remember, such as Robert Duvall in Apocalypse Now, “I love the smell of napalm in the morning.” Thus we come to Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s documentary The Vietnam War, about which the Washington Post trumpeted, “astounding…required viewing.”     :snip: 

The true lesson is that wars should be fought to impose your will upon the enemy. If you don’t intend to accomplish that or if the costs, however enumerated, exceed the gains from the war, don’t fight. But given how we have over 16 years driven backwards into a tribal cul-de-sac in Afghanistan, while Pakistan provides sanctuary for the Taliban’s Islamist extremists, we haven’t learned that lesson.    :snip:  http://www.hoover.org/research/vietnam-documentary-and-military-lessons

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Documentary on the Vietnam War: a great lie + 2

Via Mike

 As the Ken Burns and Lynn Novick documentary on the Vietnam War came to a close at the end of the 10th episode, over 18 hours, anti-war protestors with greying hair must be celebrating since the film thoroughly vindicated their arguments – a manipulation many of us predicted before the opening of the first episode. Great lies have an element of truth, and while Burns tells a great story in film, that does not make his stories true.

The documentary misleads viewers from the beginning with two false premises, first that Ho Chi Minh and his North Vietnamese were nationalists dedicated to reunify North and South Vietnam. In fact, the North was determined to impose Communist rule by force on South Vietnam. We were there to stop the spread of Communism in southeast Asia. The difference is vast.  :snip:  https://freenorthcarolina.blogspot.com/2017/10/documentary-on-vietnam-war-great-lie-2.html

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The Vietnam War Documentary: Doom And Despair

by Bing West

Thursday, October 12, 2017

 Ken Burns recently released a documentary entitled “The Vietnam War: An Intimate History.” The script concluded with these words, “The Vietnam War was a tragedy, immeasurable and irredeemable.”1 That damning hyperbole neatly summarized 18 hours of haunting, funereal music, doleful tales by lugubrious veterans, and an elegiac historical narration voiced over a collage of violent images and thunderous explosions. In this telling, the anti-war protestors in the States are morally equivalent to the American soldiers who fought the war. Indeed, while the grunts seem soiled by the violence, those who evaded the draft and spat upon those who fought had the added satisfaction of seeing Soviet tanks manned by North Vietnamese soldiers roll triumphantly into Saigon.  :snip: https://www.hoover.org/research/vietnam-war-documentary-doom-and-despair

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