Bill's going to the 'Nam.
November 16, 2000 7:33 AM   Subscribe

Bill's going to the 'Nam. At least he's not planning on apologizing for the war. I wonder how many vets are having apoplectic fits right now.
posted by CRS (9 comments total)
It's true that apologising for things in the past that were nothing to do with you tends to bring down the PC-backlash-style ire of the Right.

On the other hand, no-one mocks the Germans for accepting the idea of historical guilt. And the US certainly owes Southeast Asia a bit of a grovel.

Perhaps it would be better if they sent in Noam Chomsky?
posted by Mocata at 8:09 AM on November 16, 2000

I don't see what's wrong with an apology. Like, in living memory we killed about a million of their people for no good reason. If that doesn't call for an apology, what would?
posted by Doug at 8:12 AM on November 16, 2000

"the" 'Nam? The National Association of Manufacturers?
posted by grimmelm at 10:28 AM on November 16, 2000

Germany, to the best of my knowledge, was pressured into apologizing. They were the losers. (Now, Germany has probably the most antifascist political culture anywhere, showing that these things are complicated.)

America, while also the losers in Vietnam, is not in the position to be pressured to do anything. Without such pressure, we won't change our attitudes.

Reconciliation with Vietnam is happenning on America's terms, also. To say that Clinton's visit is a PC apology is misleading -- He's asking for trade liberalization and amnesia. This is a case where PC culture wars talk distracts from the reality of post Cold War geopolitics.
posted by rschram at 11:07 AM on November 16, 2000

PC culture war terminology should really be seen in the context of that very post Cold War agenda. It's just another political(or whatever) tool to compell.
posted by dcodea at 12:27 PM on November 16, 2000

Vets are having apoplectic fits anyway -- there's an urban legend going around that Clinton planned to fly the Vietnamese flag alongside the American flag as his ship entered the harbor, a violation fo the flag code. (Link at snopes, currently down.)
posted by dhartung at 12:28 PM on November 16, 2000

The flags are side by side here, but it's on land...
posted by owillis at 3:16 PM on November 16, 2000

While we're at it, Australia should apologize for its part as running dog to the US in Vietnam. Then again Australia is still a running dog.

posted by lagado at 4:49 PM on November 16, 2000

As is the UK.
posted by Mocata at 3:19 AM on November 17, 2000

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