Thursday, April 28, 2005

How prescient Graham Greene was

Finished The Quiet American on tape and thoroughly enjoyed it. Given how much of the book was devoted to the American effort, he must have sensed that the Americans would soon replace the French in Vietnam.

Thought the best line of the book was a South Vietnamese soldier commenting that the war would end with roughly the same peace treaty they would have had years earlier. That was the same comment made after we left - Paris peace accord of 1973 was roughly the same as the Geneva peace accords of 1954.

Just mind boggling reading the estimated 5 million! Vietnamese casualties and how 1.5 million Vietnamese left after the war. How much better our history would have been if we had recognized after WWII that the colonial era was at an end, and how we should not be providing any support at all to the French to maintain their colonies in Indo-China - instead encouraging the French to transition their colonies to self-rule.

No tens of thousand US dead. No millions of Vietnamese dead. No boat people. And no Khymer Rouge.

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