Saturday, November 19, 2005
Fri Nov 18, 2005 at 11:18:01 PM PDT
Folks, something truly dramatic has taken place over the last couple of days--it's something that dwarfs anything (outside of Plamegate) that we've dealt with for months.
I think we all need to step back, take a breath, and realize what we are seeing here, because it's historic and deeply powerful. What is happening will go farther than anything else in showing just how extremist and fanatical the Republicans really are, and will disgust moderate voters.
The GOP is becoming COMPLETELY unglued. Now, I know we say that every week here on Kos, but this is the real deal.
It's now transparent that the GOP thinks it can reverse the history of the Vietnam War as surely as it thinks it can reverse the 60's Revolution.
Do you remember all the times that we here on dKos and Democrats in congress compared the war in Iraq to the Vietnam war? Do you remember how many times we were pooh-poohed by our own political allies--and called foolish traitors by those on the right wing?
I sure do. I remember it very well.
Well, my friends, now it's the GOP making the comparisons between Iraq and Vietnam AND THEY THINK IT HELPS THEIR CASE!
Many here may remember my much recommended diary "We've defended you five years for this moment", in which I make the case that the entire right-wing coalition has been based on resentful, conservative baby-boomers trying to undo the 1960's. Everything in politics today--and I do mean just about everything--is the playing out of this same boomer vs. boomer dynamic. Kerry vs. Bush, the Swift Boat Vets, Abortion, Race, the whole thing. Just a rehash of the 60's and early 70's, every last bit of it.
Well, this is the same shit, different day, and only slightly different topic.
You see, most of us here believe the Vietnam War was the Wrong War, and was ALWAYS a completely unwinnable war. I happen to think that we have most of the country on our side about that one, as it seems fairly obvious.
But we underestimate the potency of what is known in German as Dolschstosslegende, or, as we say in English, the "Stab-in-the-Back Legend." To quote from Wikipedia,
Many Germans who supported, fought in, or had otherwise known people lost in the enormously costly war, believed the causes for the German/Austrian involvement in the war were justified. They had hoped it would bring a restoration of past glory and a unified German nation-state. Instead, the war caused the deaths of 1,770,000 German soldiers and 760,000 German civilians, devastated the economy, and brought losses in both territory and national sovereignty.
Conservatives, nationalists and ex-military leaders sought others to blame. The common scapegoats were Weimar Republic politicians, socialists, communists, and "international Jewry" -- a term referring to Jews with a perceived excess of wealth and influence. These "November criminals", nationalists alleged, had "stabbed them in the back" on the "home front," by either criticizing the cause of German nationalism, or by simply not being zealous-enough supporters of it. In essence the accusation was that the accused committed treason against the benevolent and righteous common cause.
Due to the highly potent imagery of a "stab in the back", and the common perception amongst political conservatives that politically hostile homefronts defeat otherwise winnable wars, the stab in the back legend is a common legend in a number of modern societies. In particular, the stab in the back legend is often used by conservatives to explain the defeat of the United States in the Vietnam war. In the context of the US involvement in the Vietnam War the stab in the back legend is part of the Vietnam Syndrome complex.
And folks, the Legend is on high display.
Allow me to give you a few delightful quotes from our friends over at RedState.org...
America was stabbed in the back by the POT* By: francisurquhart
Vietnam was lost as a result of a stab in the back. The war was won on the ground. Had the state of affairs as of the signing of the Paris Peace Accords been allowed to continue, there would still be a free South Vietnam today - and there would have been no Cambodian genocide.
South Vietnam was defeated because the Democrats stabbed our ally, and by extention all patriotic Americans, in the back, causing our defeat - which was their aim dating back to the moment when the McGovernite left took over the party.
*POT = Party of Treason
Or here's another wonderful post, from an (appropriately named) blogger named nazgul12:
No, I'm not cherrypicking these. This is literally what these people think. And it gets a lot worse if you venture into Little Green Footballs or Freeperland.
But it's not just bloggers. Oh no. See a selection from this piece by none other than David Horowitz:
And now it's GOP Congressmen, folks.
That's right, GOP Rep. Johnson, in his speech tonight in the anti-Murtha political stunt vote, came out and started talking about how the "peaceniks" wanted to cut and run and leave our troops hanging out to dry just like they did in Vietnam.
And you know what the sickest thing about all of this is?
When all is said and done, the Iraq war is all about aging boomers debating while young men and Iraqis fight and die.
There is only one real dynamic going on in the GOP at this point. Nobody believes there were WMDs now if they ever did. Nobody really thinks it's about terrorism. Nobody really thinks it's even about Saving Face--after all, there's not really much face left to save.
No, my friends. Let me tell you what this war is about now, for those in the GOP:
This war is about proving all those mean, nasty hippies in the 60's and 70's that they were WRONG about Vietnam...and by God we're going to KEEP our troops in there as long as it takes to prove it!
Just like the abortion debate is about sexual control, and proving those nasty hippies wrong.
Just like the global warming debate is about anti-envirowhackotreehuggers, and proving those nasty hippies wrong.
Just like racial equality and Katrina is about proving those nasty hippies wrong--in addition to racism.
Which is why they have to compare John Murtha to Michael Moore--not because of any serious connection between them, or because Michael Moore is wrong--no, it's because Michael Moore reminds them of a dirty, nasty hippie, and Murtha's speech reminds them of the Vietnam debate.
This war in Iraq is about REVERSING HISTORY, no less than the culture wars are about REVERSING HISTORY. The Culture Wars are a means of erasing the 60's revolution--and the Iraq War is a way of refighting and winning Vietnam.
All we are doing is fighting Vietnam again by proxy. We are watching old men who had too much of a stick up their ass to join in the incredible social movements of that time--and have hated all those who participated ever since--attempt to get every last dig in that they can, and reverse history.
We are watching the likes of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, who never fought in that goddamn war but wish we had just sent enough of them OTHER boys there to die until we won--dig in their heels and insist on sending as many boys to die as it takes to prove those nasty war-protesters like John Fucking Kerry wrong--even if some of those protesters were vets themselves. Or especially so--since they weren't smart or elite enough to stay out of the actual fighting.
Because that's what this is about: reversing the 60's, just like I said in my previous diary.
These people literally believe that they can redeem the defeat we suffered in Vietnam--that they blame on liberals anyway--by proving that we will win if we just "stay the course."
It's pure ideology at this point--all of it. It's just boomer on boomer, round and round and round and round...
But don't worry, GOP boomers: I'm sure that Rambo will come in and win Iraq for you the way he did Vietnam.