Lessons from antiwar antecedents

peace nowI have for several weeks been submerged in the writings and poster art of the revolutionary sixties, and I’ll catch my breath to say this to the Antiwar Now from the Anti-Imperialists Then. We won no victory with the fall of Saigon, the Vietnam War wasn’t ended by protests, bombs, or the fragging of front line officers. The portend is good for those hoping to see the end of the War on Islam, but on the whole it is not.

The conflict in Vietnam ended when the ammunition ran out. The military industry spent its wad as it earned its wad. Lucrative mission accomplished. Gun nut thrillcraft ride over. American public opinion turned against the mass killing, the funding dried up, and the hawks receded with their loot.

Then public attention diverted to more selfish worries. The economy. An energy crisis. A surge of concern for a death spiral into environmental disaster. Does this sound familiar? FUCKING A!

Legitimate concerns all, then and now. The problems remain the same. Just as American imperialism will persist unabated. Scholars might say after Vietnam, American militarism had to be tempered, such that the US was compelled to conduct its counter-insurgency genocides by more discrete means.

Like the Red, White and Blue ordnance jamboree of Southeast Asia, the US-Islam War will expend itself. But the war of the capitalist white against indigenous brown will continue unless the Western populations step up to a serious rise in consciousness. Not a higher spiritual conscience, but an honest self-assessment of First-World selfishness.

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Eric Verlo

About Eric Verlo

On sabbatical
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1 Response to Lessons from antiwar antecedents

  1. Avatar Tony Logan says:

    The war against Vietnam ended because US imperialism made a strategic retreat from out of SE Asia, and not because any ‘ammunition ran out’. American imperialism lives on and continues to plague the planet.

    Contrary to obtaining ‘an honest self-assessment of Western selfishness’ ever being able to end US imperialism (that would be ‘higher spiritual consciousness’, we can look forward to a combination of military and political defeat doing so. That was the combination that has delivered the severest defeats in the past to British, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Dutch, and German imperialisms. Look at the British as an example.

    The British imperialists received their biggest blows to their former Empire and their imperialism from the Germans in WW2. Politically their authority was further eroded when the Indian subcontinent used the battering the Germans had delivered to gain their independence post war. Today the British are a mere hang-on to US imperialism and US guns.

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