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Question: What do you make of comparisons between Vietnam and Iraq?

Armitage:     I don’t see that many.  Vietnam was homogeneous.  Iraq is not.  There are a lot of differences.  In the question of Vietnam, we didn’t have UN resolutions existent that would call for the use of force.  There are a lot of differences.  What is the same is, if you think about it, the remarkable ability of the American public to absorb casualties.  In Vietnam when I first showed up in country, we were losing dead . . . 300 soldiers a week. We’re losing today 80 or 90 a month.  But still, notwithstanding the neuralgia that exists around this issue, the American public seems to have a lot more patience for this suffering – if they can see a valid end – than many other states may have.

 

Is Iraq the new Vietnam?

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