Author Topic: The holiday that hurts  (Read 8772 times)

D. Engebretson

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 4997
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #90 on: November 11, 2015, 05:01:17 PM »
You have forgotten that in the 10 years after the end of the war 12.5 million South Vietnamese were sent to reeducation camps, with an estimated 165,000 prisoners dying.  Between 65,000 and 250,000 South Vietnamese were executed. 

No, I haven't.  Those people lost a civil war that we helped to perpetuate.  We share the blame for those deaths, too.  How might things have been different, had we engaged for peace rather than to perpetuate the violence?

Our soldiers fought in that war, in part, to keep these atrocities from occurring.

At least that is the propaganda we fed ourselves to justify our own atrocities.  Had that been the real motive, we could have found much better approaches to achieve that end.

I will admit that my knowledge of Vietnamese history is less than adequate, but how does one come up with a "civil war" to describe the efforts of the communists in the north to forcefully take over the south?  Also, the partitioning of the country was not the work of the US. We are not solely responsible for any division in this area. This was the result of the Geneva Conference in 1954, in which several countries participated, including the US, USSR, UK and France.  While elections were hoped to be held in 1956 with a view to possible unification of the country, these were not held (as the south did not feel bound b the conference's authority).  The communists of the north chose as an alternative to unite by force, thus the war.  Conflict that escalated later with US involvement began much earlier with the French who had colonial rule over the area following WWII.  To reduce the Vietnam issue to just a "civil war" in which the US interfered and worsened seems to misinterpret the historical situation.  My original point is that these situations are highly complex anyway and placing blame on one country for poor choices is to reduce the complexity to a simple option of finding a convenient scapegoat.  There still remains the painful truth of unspeakable communistic atrocities against the south.  To reduce it all to just a "civil war" that could have been peacefully resolved if only we had stayed out militarily appears naive at best.  As a side note: how does one seek peace with a force that is so brutal and destructive of human life and dignity short of war?
« Last Edit: November 11, 2015, 05:03:44 PM by D. Engebretson »
Pastor Don Engebretson
St. Peter Lutheran Church of Polar (Antigo) WI

Charles Austin

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 14882
    • View Profile
    • Charles is Coloring
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #91 on: November 11, 2015, 05:14:49 PM »
And to reduce the Vietnam war to an Us vs. the Commies and their aggression also misinterprets the complex situation.
Retired ELCA Pastor. Iowa native. Now in Minneapolis. It is now clear that the election of 2020 was not stolen. But we see now how it was nearly stolen after the balloting. Some of our top officials assisted by corrupt lawyers, attempted to steal the electoral college. Some true patriots saved us.

John Mundinger

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 5963
  • John 8:31-32
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #92 on: November 11, 2015, 08:03:23 PM »
Too bad a thread that was intended to be a warm tribute is getting all crapped up...

Committing our nation to the principles of just war would be more substantive than warm tributes.  I do not understand why people of faith would equate such a suggestion to "crapping up" the suggestion that we should honor our veterans.
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

John Mundinger

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 5963
  • John 8:31-32
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #93 on: November 11, 2015, 08:10:13 PM »
I will admit that my knowledge of Vietnamese history is less than adequate, but how does one come up with a "civil war" to describe the efforts of the communists in the north to forcefully take over the south?

The first half of that sentence pretty much answers the question posed in the second half.  Vietnam was not two countries prior to the expulsion of the French.  So, it was not a matter of one country attempting to take over another by force.  It was armed conflict between two opposing political forces within one country, i.e. a civil war.
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

Terry W Culler

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 2359
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #94 on: November 11, 2015, 08:48:03 PM »
The problem in Vietnam, as it was in Korea and Iraq and Afghanistan and now wherever ISIS holds sway is that these weren't really wars.  Wars are fought following an official declaration of war approved by the Congress.  These events never had clear goals, we never knew when or if we won, and military decisions were made by politicians.  (the first Iraq war is in another category because it did have a stated goal which, when achieved, signaled the end of it).  If we want to honor veterans we will stop getting into these pseudo-wars and follow the Constitution.
Trying to be retired but failing

Buckeye Deaconess

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 3047
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #95 on: November 11, 2015, 09:16:06 PM »
If we want to honor veterans we will stop getting into these pseudo-wars and follow the Constitution.

Terrorism is an unconventional form of war.  Are you really okay with more 9/11 style attacks on our own soil?  Are you really okay with standing by while innocent girls are taken captive in Africa and the Middle East (and other places to be sure) and kept as sex slaves and/or slaughtered under the guise of serving a disgusting and distorted notion of a false God?  Who will hear their pleas for help?  Should we sit back and do nothing while the innocent perish?  Ignore their please for our intervention, in other words?  That, sir, is cowardly.  When it's our own daughters, it will be too late.  And make no mistake, they are coming for our daughters.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2015, 09:19:09 PM by Buckeye Deaconess »

J. Thomas Shelley

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 4281
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #96 on: November 11, 2015, 09:40:01 PM »
I repent that I may have triggered these digressions by posting about Martin of Tours and other soldier-saints far upstream.

This day is not about the Constitutionality of conficts, or the righteousness of a particular engagement, but about the persons who willingly (or unwillingly, in the case of draftees) place themselves in harms way on behalf of others.
Greek Orthodox Deacon -Ecumenical Patriarchate
Ordained to the Holy Diaconate Mary of Egypt Sunday A.D. 2022

Baptized, Confirmed, and Ordained United Methodist.
Served as a Lutheran Pastor October 31, 1989 - October 31, 2014.
Charter member of the first chapter of the Society of the Holy Trinity.

John Mundinger

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 5963
  • John 8:31-32
    • View Profile
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

Charles Austin

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 14882
    • View Profile
    • Charles is Coloring
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #98 on: November 11, 2015, 10:53:57 PM »
The deaconess writes:
Terrorism is an unconventional form of war.  Are you really okay with more 9/11 style attacks on our own soil?
I comment:
No, I am not. Are you really okay with having virtually everything we do make those who practice a warlike, militant Islam even more mad at us than they are now?

The deaconess writes:
Are you really okay with standing by while innocent girls are taken captive in Africa and the Middle East (and other places to be sure) and kept as sex slaves and/or slaughtered under the guise of serving a disgusting and distorted notion of a false God?  Who will hear their pleas for help?  Should we sit back and do nothing while the innocent perish?  Ignore their please for our intervention, in other words?
I comment:
So what's your plan, deaconess? Send our troops everywhere something bad happens? Use our troops as crusaders against those serving another god? And where are these pleas for help? Do we as Americans have an obligation to leap in with troops every time "the innocent perish" somewhere in the world? You would not only have us as the world's police force, but as the world's theological crusaders. I find that appalling and dangerous.

The deaconess writes:
That, sir, is cowardly.  When it's our own daughters, it will be too late.  And make no mistake, they are coming for our daughters.
I comment:
So when are you re-upping? Good grief.
Retired ELCA Pastor. Iowa native. Now in Minneapolis. It is now clear that the election of 2020 was not stolen. But we see now how it was nearly stolen after the balloting. Some of our top officials assisted by corrupt lawyers, attempted to steal the electoral college. Some true patriots saved us.

George Erdner

  • Guest
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #99 on: November 12, 2015, 12:39:03 AM »
And when the concept of "just war" is raised, who is to decide when a given conflict is "just"?  Who sets the standards?  Or is the "just" war no war at all?  Is the highest ideal isolation?

It's every man for himself.

John Mundinger

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 5963
  • John 8:31-32
    • View Profile
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

John Mundinger

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 5963
  • John 8:31-32
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #101 on: November 12, 2015, 07:19:30 AM »
And when the concept of "just war" is raised, who is to decide when a given conflict is "just"?  Who sets the standards?  Or is the "just" war no war at all?  Is the highest ideal isolation?

It's every man for himself.

There is a lot of truth in what you say, George.  There is a lot of every man for himself because the old Adam cannot abide the thought that our enemies also are created in God's image.  Thus, we eschew the principles of just war in favor of principles of war that better serve our selfish agendas.
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

George Erdner

  • Guest
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #102 on: November 12, 2015, 09:00:21 AM »
And when the concept of "just war" is raised, who is to decide when a given conflict is "just"?  Who sets the standards?  Or is the "just" war no war at all?  Is the highest ideal isolation?

It's every man for himself.

There is a lot of truth in what you say, George.  There is a lot of every man for himself because the old Adam cannot abide the thought that our enemies also are created in God's image.  Thus, we eschew the principles of just war in favor of principles of war that better serve our selfish agendas.

There is that, though I don't see how it relates. I was only referring to the fact that ultimately every person must decide for himself whether to pick up a weapon and use it or not.

Kurt Weinelt

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 1223
  • Hier stehe ich, ich kann nicht anders!
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #103 on: November 12, 2015, 09:57:06 AM »
If we want to honor veterans we will stop getting into these pseudo-wars and follow the Constitution.
Terrorism is an unconventional form of war.  Are you really okay with more 9/11 style attacks on our own soil?  Are you really okay with standing by while innocent girls are taken captive in Africa and the Middle East (and other places to be sure) and kept as sex slaves and/or slaughtered under the guise of serving a disgusting and distorted notion of a false God?  Who will hear their pleas for help?  Should we sit back and do nothing while the innocent perish?  Ignore their please for our intervention, in other words?  That, sir, is cowardly.  When it's our own daughters, it will be too late.  And make no mistake, they are coming for our daughters.
This old G.I. appreciates your posts on this topic, Deaconess. Thank you.

And I owe a huge debt of gratitude to all my brothers and sisters in arms who have done so much more than I to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.

At this point I will echo Chaplain Gard's point...using freedom of speech to denigrate veterans on Veterans Day is akin to cussing farmers with your mouth full. And both are equally attractive.

"...It is the Soldier, not the campus organizer Who has given us freedom to protest." (Charles Province)
"Learning about history is an antidote to the hubris of the present, the idea that everything in OUR lives is the ultimate." David McCullough

Buckeye Deaconess

  • ALPB Contribution Leader
  • *****
  • Posts: 3047
    • View Profile
Re: The holiday that hurts
« Reply #104 on: November 12, 2015, 10:00:38 AM »
If we want to honor veterans we will stop getting into these pseudo-wars and follow the Constitution.
Terrorism is an unconventional form of war.  Are you really okay with more 9/11 style attacks on our own soil?  Are you really okay with standing by while innocent girls are taken captive in Africa and the Middle East (and other places to be sure) and kept as sex slaves and/or slaughtered under the guise of serving a disgusting and distorted notion of a false God?  Who will hear their pleas for help?  Should we sit back and do nothing while the innocent perish?  Ignore their please for our intervention, in other words?  That, sir, is cowardly.  When it's our own daughters, it will be too late.  And make no mistake, they are coming for our daughters.
This old G.I. appreciates your posts on this topic, Deaconess. Thank you.

And I owe a huge debt of gratitude to all my brothers and sisters in arms who have done so much more than I to secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity.

At this point I will echo Chaplain Gard's point...using freedom of speech to denigrate veterans on Veterans Day is akin to cussing farmers with your mouth full. And both are equally attractive.

"...It is the Soldier, not the campus organizer Who has given us freedom to protest." (Charles Province)

Amen and thank you.  I thank God that it seems to be only on this forum that I see such disrespect on display.  Thank you for your service.