Thursday, February 08, 2007

Iraq-Iran Situation Analogous to China-Vietnam

In a floor speech on 6 February 2007, Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA) made an analogy between Iraq-Iran today to Vietnam-China. In Vietnam US forces killed 1.4 million enemy combatants but finally had to abandon a military-only policy. In his speech, Sen. Webb re-defines “supporting the troops” by broadening the context to include non-military action.

"...I would cite an important historical referent. In 1971, China , like Iran today, was considered a rogue nation. China in those days was already a nuclear power. It had an American war on its borders, in Vietnam , a war that it was actively assisting. We, the United States , took the initiative, aggressively opening China through diplomatic energy, and over time helped to bring China into the international community. We should not be afraid of taking similar actions with Iran , and also with Syria.

The bottom line of all of this is that this Administration and its supporters must understand the realities that are causing us, as a Congress, to finally say enough is enough. That the time has come for a new approach. That the answer in Iraq , and to our fight against international terrorism, and to our diminished posture around the world, is for us to show not only our prowess on the battlefield but also our leadership in the diplomatic arena. That indeed we have an obligation to the men and women who have served so selflessly on our behalf, to match their proficiency and their loyalties with the kind of thoughtful leadership that will bring this effort to a proper conclusion. "

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