Leaving recruits to fend for themselves

I can’t help but think of this iconic photo as we envision our eventual withdrawal from Afghanistan and Iraq. We say that US success in both depends on surrogate nationals to enforce their own subjugation. Recruiting collaborators becomes more difficult as they foresee the precedent which awaits them.

No occupied nation in modern history, with the exception yet of Israeli Palestine, has not expelled its presumed invaders, and punished its misguided traitors.

In the iconic image which has come to represent the Fall of Siagon, the “last chopper” was not rescuing South Vietnamese refugees from atop the American Embassy. In actuality the helicopter was evacuating the desperate occupants of the apartment building which housed Vietnamese CIA operatives. These were the South Vietnamese who had served the US and now feared the vengeance of the victorious north.

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