Tag: Vietnam

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Dr. William Hamilton, a military historian, former USA Today columnist, and a 20-year decorated Army Vietnam War veteran has gifted us with a powerfully important book at a critical time. America has just lost its second war in Afghanistan. The first was Vietnam. There are a few “ties” and “inconclusive” contests. While focusing on “lessons […]

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The Biden Speech I Would Have Drafted

 

President Biden finally found his way back to the White House this afternoon to deliver a speech about his failure in Afghanistan. If he were a real president, in full control of his mental faculties and looking to earn respect from his constituents, here’s what he should have delivered. You can read his miserable, finger-pointing, “not my fault” remarks as delivered here.

Note: I’m a former speechwriter. I have written speeches for a Cabinet Secretary in the Bush 41 Administration, a leading United States Senator, and on occasion, a couple of Fortune 250 corporate CEOs.

Here’s the speech I would have written and he would never have given, considering his lack of integrity, failure of leadership, his diminished mental state, and his awful staff. And I would have resigned before being fired. These are incompetent and deluded people, from the top down. This is the first draft, so forgive the errors.

QQ For You and Me: Bubble Tea, Diplomat

 

You may know it as bubble tea, tapioca tea, pearl milk tea, or boba tea. You may not know it at all. But, like popcorn chicken and scallion pancakes, bubble tea is a Taiwanese invention that’s grown to be beloved worldwide. And it’s not just a culinary triumph for the tiny democracy; it’s also become a symbol of important, and strengthening, international ties in the modern age. 

Wile E. Coyote Democrats, President Trump, and a Dangerous World

 

In case you missed it, two nuclear-armed nations, India and Pakistan, just had an aerial skirmish with bombs dropped and planes shot down. Also, a failed socialist state in our own hemisphere is on the edge of complete lawlessness, as the dictator, Maduro, shut down the last border crossing to stop relief supplies flowing to Venezuelans. Meanwhile, President Trump is practicing tough but patient nuclear diplomacy with Kim Jong-un, the third-generation hereditary North Korean dictator, and tough but patient trade negotiations with President Xi Jinping, the strongest Chinese Communist leader since Chairman Mao, while meeting in a tough, smaller rival to China, Vietnam.

So, naturally, the House Democrats, under the leadership of Speaker Pelosi 1.2, held their first big show hearing with a man convicted of lying to Congress. It went as well as President Trump could have wished. These same geniuses thought having House Democratic women wear white at the State of the Union was a brilliant move, only to be completely owned by a smiling President Trump. Who, again, is the political neophyte?

The congressional Republicans have continued to demonstrate their lack of fitness to govern, helping the Democrats stay in the game. Yet, the Democrats are moving so far left and behaving so foolishly that we should all be investing in Acme stock. Indeed, the only better investment than Acme stock may be proposition bets with British betting houses on President Trump to win reelection in 2020.

Thoughts on Today’s Vietnam

 

I am returning from Vietnam today, after a visit that stretched from Saturday through Tuesday. Literally. The flight arrived at midnight Friday, and the flight out departed at 2:00 am on Wednesday. I am writing this at the Transient Lounge in Seoul Airport, an amenity deserving a post of its own. My flight for the U.S. departs after a nine hour layover here.

I was in Vietnam visiting the family of my middle son’s fiancee, they had the engagement ceremony over the weekend. Since most of her family will not be able to visit the U.S. when she and my son get married, the engagement ceremony was done in lieu of the wedding for the Vietnamese relatives. To protect their privacy, I will hereafter refer to her as Vietlady and my middle son as Pipeliner (since he designs oil and gas pipelines).

Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss how Brett Kavanaugh’s passionate defense of his character and record and Sen. Lindsey Graham’s denunciation of Senate Democrats galvanized most Republicans around the Kavanaugh nomination.  They also slam the mainstream media for continuing it’s appallingly biased coverage of Kavanaugh, this time horrified that the judge was angry for being accused of being a gang rapist and that his wife and daughters are the recipients of death threats.  And they roll their eyes as Democratic Sen. Dick Blumenthal, who lied about being a Vietnam veteran for years, grilled Kavanaugh on questions of credibility.

Reminiscences: The 1970s

 

1970sI confessed to my seven-year-old son recently that when I was his age I was usually out in the street playing with toy guns and eating a pack of candy cigarettes a day. “Where were your mom and dad?” he asked. I told him the truth: “Entertaining in the den with real guns and real cigarettes.”

Couples with children were seen as blessed, surrounded as they were by forgivable versions of themselves. Children weren’t coddled but cherished and I still remember the pleasure my dad took casually cracking hard-boiled eggs on my head. The term role model did not then exist nor, for that matter, did solar subsidies, the prevailing belief in those days being that Americans could never be cowed into paying for the sun.

Heh, good times.

Vietnam Invites US Army to Return

 

south-east-asiaFour decades ago, US forces left Vietnam after a bruising defeat to China- and Soviet-backed communists. Today, Vietnam has asked the US Army to return:

The Army plans to stockpile equipment in Vietnam, Cambodia, and other Pacific countries yet unnamed that will allow US forces to deploy there more rapidly, because key supplies and gear will already be in place. The new caches will be well inside what China considers its sphere of influence.

Army Materiel Command chief Gen. Dennis Via emphasized they will contain equipment for Humanitarian and Disaster Relief operations (HADR), not heavy armored vehicles that fill the rapidly growing European Activity Set. Still, the presence of an American Army cache in Vietnam would be dramatic. Americans best remember our defeat there 42 years ago, but Vietnam has fought a land war and multiple naval clashes with China. Beijing will not be pleased.

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Mrs. Of England is not an ideologue, nor a debater by nature. Over the course of our marriage, I have known her to become genuinely passionate about an abstract issue not related to the liturgy only once. No one but Charlie Cooke has ever been so wrong as to see her not only go to […]

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The Speech of Political Manliness

 

Leadership is deeds, not speeches (except, one supposes, speeches that take on the force of deeds). The media and Washington-the-place are the problem. The surplus of spirit in the people is the solution. The president should serve something greater than himself — like Washington-the-man going back to his farm, a very Cincinnatus, relinquishing power after fully discharging his duties. Mr. Perry obviously believes he would not shrink in the comparison — he could withstand the gaze of millions, like the poet says.

The Ghosts of America’s Allies

 

070326_r16050b_p465There are people in this world who, though they are not American, believe in the justice of America’s cause. It sometimes happens that they commit their lives to an unkind fate by becoming America’s allies. This has happened in Iraq. Those who most loved America face the cruelest fate. Americans are represented by politicians who are the artisans of this fate.

Like avant-garde art, American foreign policy sometimes is designed to shock decent people. The spectacle of slaughter; the fear for one’s wife or child; the sure humiliation of being foolish about America; petty things and terrible things come together to form a whole; there is nothing to be done but to say what one sees or fears; there is nothing then left but to see those fears come alive.

Today I read this article by National Review‘s Mr. Nordlinger, who seems to moonlight as conservative America’s man of honor. He remembers and says all the things people with their busy lives cannot remember and say. How does that man live–knowing so many shameful things?

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40 years ago, Saigon was evacuated. The Vietnam war was over for America. Mr. Rory Kennedy’s documentary shows everyone who wants to see a view of the evacuation–the consequences of US policy & politics. Very little is said about what followed the American evacuation. I suppose everyone on Ricochet already knows: A slaughter of millions, […]

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If The Wall Could Speak

 

Rays of sunlight burst from above, bathing the very air itself with my spirit as the deep rumble of a motorcycle across the lot heralds the arrival of another veteran. He just parked his bike, regarding me from across the parking lot. Sometimes they walk right up to me, and I recognize them, though the lines in their face betray the years and the pain, their eyes searching for a brother in arms. Sometimes they walk all 288 feet, though often times the emotions overwhelm them and they have to break away. Other times, however, their grief is too strong and they watch me from a distance before riding away in silence.

Very seldom do I hear someone say that a comrade or loved one’s name is etched in these panels. Instead, they say, “My grandfather is on the wall,” or as one Purple Heart Recipient said yesterday, his eyes welling up, “twelve of my friends are up there.” I see all who gaze my direction. I remember the time my granddaughter came to visit. She was born long after after I arrived here, of course, and I recognized her long before she saw my name. It hurt harder than anything to see the tears stream down her young face.

A Teachable Moment for Rand Paul?

 

We now have on our hands Barack Obama’s War, for our latest Middle Eastern war belongs entirely to him. And someone — let it be me! — should alert Sen. Rand Paul to this teachable moment, for Obama’s War (which Rand Paul supports) was brought on by the very policy of non-intervention that he, his father, and the Cato Institute all championed. As Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel has testified in word and deed, there is essentially no difference on foreign affairs between left-wing Democratics and arch-libertarians who sometimes vote Republican.

This war might have been avoided. Had Obama taken the trouble to arrange for a few thousand American soldiers to remain in Iraq — as he easily could have — the Iraqi’s coalition government between Shia, Sunni, and Kurd would have held, despite Maliki’s perfidy. That, in turn, would have prevented al-Qaeda’s reemergence in the Sunni-dominated provinces of Iraq. Moreover, ISIS would not be in control of great swathes of Syria had the president followed the advice of his advisors and allies and backed the secular-minded opposition to Bashar al-Assad from the start.