How is the Iraq War like the Vietnam war? Let us count the ways. Oh, wait, the Cunning Realist has done it for us, riffing off a Mark Twain line that “History doesn't repeat itself; at best it sometimes rhymes”:
S/he finds fifteen similarities between the Vietnam War and the war in Iraq, and then issues a challenge:
If someone—-perhaps a supporter of this war—-can come up with fifteen ways in which the two conflicts differ materially, I look forward to reading your list in the comments section:
Well, let's see. I'm no supporter of the war, but I like a challenge.
1. It was wet in Vietnam, it's dry in Iraq.
2. There's much more oil in Iraq and more money to be made there.
3. In the case of Vietnam, the US government made up or exaggerated the Gulf of Tonkin Incident in order to spook Congress and justify its actions. In the case of Iraq, the US government latched on to a real but irrelevant attack on the US to spook Congress and justify its actions.
4. In Vietnam the US fought against nationalists and a political ideology (Communism). In Iraq, the US fights against nationalism and a religious ideology (radical Islam). The Islamicists have more allies with less to lose who are thus more willing to help them.
5. I give up.