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Fwd: [utepprogressives] President Urges Patience in War

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  • Greg Cannon
    ... http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/columns/pressingissues_display
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 30, 2005
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      --- Julie Keller <jakeller@...> wrote:

      > To: utepprogressives@yahoogroups.com
      > From: "Julie Keller" <jakeller@...>
      > Date: Thu, 30 Jun 2005 15:25:52 -0000
      > Subject: [utepprogressives] President Urges Patience
      > in War
      >
      > ... But its LBJ and its 1965.
      >
      > "To abandon this small and brave nation to its
      > enemies, and to the
      > terror that must follow, would be an unforgivable
      > wrong," Johnson
      > said. "To withdraw from one battlefield means only
      > to prepare for the
      > next." At that moment, only 400 American boys had
      > died in the rice
      > paddies. Here's the complete text.
      >
      > By Greg Mitchell
      >
      > (June 29, 2005) -- As the press continues to argue
      > over what
      > President Bush said, didn't say or should have said
      > about the war in
      > Iraq on Tuesday night, I'll take this opportunity to
      > simply roll out,
      > as food for thought, the words of another president
      > caught up in a
      > difficult conflict not quite in its final throes.
      > Here is a speech
      > delivered by Lyndon B. Johnson on April 7, 1965.
      > Make of it what you
      > will.
      >
      > ********
      >
      > Tonight Americans and Asians are dying for a world
      > where each people
      > may choose its own path to change. This is the
      > principle for which
      > our ancestors fought in the valleys of Pennsylvania.
      > It is the
      > principle for which our sons fight tonight in the
      > jungles of Viet-Nam.
      >
      > Viet-Nam is far away from this quiet campus. We have
      > no territory
      > there, nor do we seek any. The war is dirty and
      > brutal and difficult.
      > And some 400 young men, born into an America that is
      > bursting with
      > opportunity and promise, have ended their lives on
      > Viet-Nam's
      > steaming soil.
      >
      > Why must we take this painful road? Why must this
      > nation hazard its
      > ease, its interest, and its power for the sake of a
      > people so far
      > away?
      >
      > We fight because we must fight if we are to live in
      > a world where
      > every country can shape its own destiny, and only in
      > such a world
      > will our own freedom be finally secure.
      >
      > This kind of world will never be built by bombs or
      > bullets. Yet the
      > infirmities of man are such that force must often
      > precede reason and
      > the waste of war, the works of peace.
      >
      > We wish this were not so. But we must deal with the
      > world as it is,
      > if it is ever to be as we wish.
      >
      > The world as it is in Asia is not a serene or
      > peaceful place.
      >
      > Of course, some of the people of South Viet-Nam are
      > participating in
      > attack on their own government. But trained men and
      > supplies, orders
      > and arms, flow in a constant stream from North to
      > South. This support
      > is the heartbeat of the war.
      >
      > And it is a war of unparalleled brutality. Simple
      > farmers are the
      > targets of assassination and kidnapping. Women and
      > children are
      > strangled in the night because their men are loyal
      > to the government.
      > And helpless villagers are ravaged by sneak attacks.
      > Large-scale
      > raids are conducted on towns, and terror strikes in
      > the heart of
      > cities.
      >
      > The confused nature of this conflict cannot mask the
      > fact that it is
      > the new face of an old enemy. The contest in
      > Viet-Nam is part of a
      > wider pattern of aggressive purposes.
      >
      > Why are these realities our concern? Why are we in
      > South Viet-Nam?
      >
      > We are there because we have a promise to keep. Over
      > many years, we
      > have made a national pledge to help South Viet-Nam
      > defend its
      > independence. And I intend to keep that promise.
      >
      > To dishonour that pledge, to abandon this small and
      > brave nation to
      > its enemies, and to the terror that must follow,
      > would be an
      > unforgivable wrong.
      >
      > We are also there to strengthen world order. Around
      > the globe from
      > Berlin to Thailand are people whose well being rests
      > in part on the
      > belief that they can count on us if they are
      > attacked. To leave Viet-
      > Nam to its fate would shake the confidence of all
      > these people in the
      > value of an American commitment and in the value of
      > America's word.
      > The result would be increased unrest and
      > instability, even wide war.
      >
      > We are also there because there are great stakes in
      > the balance. Let
      > no one think for a minute that retreat from Viet-Nam
      > would bring an
      > end to the conflict. The battle would be renewed in
      > one country and
      > then another. The central lesson of our time is that
      > the appetite of
      > aggression is never satisfied. To withdraw from one
      > battlefield means
      > only to prepare for the next. We must say in
      > Southeast Asia--as we
      > did in Europe--in the words of the Bible: "Hitherto
      > shalt thou come,
      > but no further."
      >
      > Our objective is the independence of South Viet-Nam,
      > and its freedom
      > from attack. We want nothing for ourselves-only that
      > the people of
      > South Viet-Nam be allowed to guide their own country
      > in their own way.
      >
      > We will do everything necessary to reach that
      > objective. And we will
      > do only what is absolutely necessary.
      >
      > We do this in order to slow down aggression.
      >
      > We do this to increase the confidence of the brave
      > people of South
      > Viet-Nam who have bravely borne this brutal battle
      > for so many years
      > with so many casualties.
      >
      > We will not be defeated. We will not grow tired.
      >
      > We will not withdraw, either openly or under the
      > cloak of a
      > meaningless agreement.
      >
      > We hope that peace will come swiftly. But that is in
      > the hands of
      > others besides ourselves. And we must be prepared
      > for a long
      > continued conflict. It will require patience as well
      > as bravery, the
      > will to endure as well as the will to resist.
      >
      > I wish it were possible to convince others with
      > words of what we now
      > find it necessary to say with guns and planes: Armed
      > hostility is
      > futile. Our resources are equal to the challenge.
      >
      > Because we fight for values and we fight for
      > principles, rather than
      > territory or colonies, our patience and our
      > determination are
      > unending.
      >
      > [LBJ, at least, had a genuine Texas accent, and
      > could speak, read and
      > write English fluently, despite being a genuine
      > Texan.]
      >
      >
      > Link:
      >
      http://www.editorandpublisher.com/eandp/columns/pressingissues_display
      > .jsp?vnu_content_id=1000971144
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
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