Phil Harris

It might take a thousand Bookmobiles to transport all of the tomes that have been written on the subject of these military conflicts. Many, if not most, conclude in one way or another, that we entered those wars for misguided, arrogantly foolish reasons, and that we paid a heavy price in blood and treasure for no good reason. Many people believe that we are doing the same thing in Iraq.

Some claim to be "real" conservatives. They point to this current struggle, and issue broad condemnations against the Bush administration. They argue that we should not be in the business of nation building, and it is not our role to be the world's preeminent law enforcement entity, or the lone defender of good versus evil. The founders, they say, would never have approved of this arrogant, foolish, and self-destructive behavior.

Yet I say again, America was victorious in Korea and Vietnam, and we continue to be victorious in Iraq, not to mention Afghanistan. This is true, even though there has never been a grand ceremony on the deck of a battleship. I do believe; however, that in all of these military actions, a more deliberate and concerted effort could and perhaps should have been waged to bring the enemy to its knees, and begging for merciful dispensation.

So where was the victory?

I understand that events leading up to our involvement in the Korean and Vietnam wars were complex and that the conflicts were rooted in a broad historical context that had little or nothing to do with the United States. However, as the situations developed, these wars became focal points for the battle against the Godless, communist plague, which was hell bent on outward expansion.

There was no other force on the Planet, which could stand in its way. Following the end of World War II, the countries of Europe and the rest of the world were vulnerable to the Sirens Song of Marx's utopian daydream, not to mention the iron claw that was busy gathering spoils for the Soviet empire.

Our direct military involvement absorbed not only our blood and treasure, but also significant resources of the Soviets and the Communist Chinese. We were anything but insignificant; a worrisome presence gathered in their neighborhood.

It would have been nice to wrap these two wars up for our constituent hosts. The carnage that followed our departure ravaged the people of South Vietnam and Cambodia. This fact highlights in red, the most shameful entry on the American resume. Nevertheless, our involvement in both of these conflicts placed significant speed bumps on the communist expressway to the rest of the world. Had we not been there and paid the heavy toll, the United States might have become a lone island of freedom in the world today.

Phil Harris

Phil Harris is a software engineer, author of Cry for the Shadows and blogs at Citizen Phil.

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