Gut Rumbles

June 02, 2005


I have maintained before that I believe Robert MacNamara is one of the most vile characters ever to strut the political landscape of the USA during my lifetime. Last night, I watched the fog of war and I certainly did not change my mind.

Thanks to his half-assed and lame-brained attempts to micro-manage the Vietnam War, as if he were still making widgets for the Ford Motor Company, MacNamara was responsible for thousands of deaths. In that documentary, I saw a frightening man.

He was TOTALLY unrepentant about his role in fucking up that war. It was all LBJ's fault. Johnson just wouldn't listen to MacNamara's infinite wisdom. People who criticized MacNamara were guilty of "counterfactual" speech. (Isn't "counterfactual" a lovely word? Just about what you would expect from someone who sent National Guard troops out to quell riots with no ammo in their weapons because they couldn't get any bullets without MacNamara's PERSONAL authorization?)

He also hatched the "body count" idea as a way to keep score in Vietnam and figured out that if he issued X-amount of ammo to the troops, he should have a corresponding number of enemy casualties to show for it. The man was a fucking lunatic.

What really chapped my ass was the way he PREENED as he stated that when he was fired "resigned" as Secretary of Defense, a mere 25,000 United States troops were dead as a result of the war. "That's less than half of the 58,000 who ended up dying there," he said smugly. I almost puked on my coffee table.

HIS obvious point was that whoever came after him killed more people than HE did, so he was just as pure as the driven snow. Nobody looking at the numbers could possibly scape HIS goat over Vietnam. Fewer than half the people who died there did it on his watch. Case closed.

Forget the fact that HIS tactics (if such idiotic brain-farts can even be called "tactics") got us mired neck-deep into a bog from which we could not extricate ourselves gracefully. By his logic, if I shoot a mama dog suckling eight pups and the pups all die of starvation and neglect, I'm not responsible for the deaths of the puppies. I killed only ONE dog. The other eight deaths were somebody else's fault.

What a totally symmetrical bastard. If you get a chance to see that show, watch it. See if you get the same impression that I did about the man. Unrepentent? Hell, he was fucking PROUD of what he did. In HIS twisted mind, his only faults were that he was misunderstood, LBJ didn't listen to him, and he was too "sensitive" about how ugly war really was.

Bejus! Tell that to the families of all the people who have their names on that wall in Washington, DC.


I'm afraid I can't watch the show after your review. I don't want to have to buy a new TV...

Posted by: Tom on June 2, 2005 05:25 PM

Hope he enjoys his eternal reward in the 9th ring of Hell.

Posted by: Mike on June 2, 2005 06:51 PM

My late father was a foreign service officer when MacNamara was Sec Def and he told me, many years ago, when MacNamara was crying about he been DECEIVED about that war, that MacNamara was a liar. My father saw people who told MacNamara the truith about what was going in Vietnam and MacNamara destroyed their careers,
He is a liar and deserves as much time in Hell as a Loving God gives him.

Posted by: BlogDog on June 2, 2005 07:29 PM

Have to agree about that guy.

He also pushed the idea of the Army, Navy, and Air Force using the same fighter-bomber, despite the fact that each branch has very different missions for its planes. It would save a lot on spare parts and all. LIke he was making cars, not killing machines. A completely dumb idea, brought to you by a stupid bureaucrat promoted way beyond his competence.

I blame JFK. He was parf of JFK's brain trust.

Posted by: joel on June 2, 2005 07:33 PM

not only that in his book-i want to say on page 304 or 320 he said "we could have left there 3 times in the mid to late 60s with honor,what a scumbag-hope he rots in hell

Posted by: pcterm2 on June 2, 2005 07:33 PM

That was the only war we ever "Lost", although I can't see how we lost it when we won every major battle and massacred the enemy whenever he came out to play.

There are a lot of good lessons from that little unpleasantness, and I hope we learned them.

Posted by: PawPaw on June 2, 2005 07:36 PM

As someone who was stationed at the Pentagon during that jerk's tenure and who worked on putting together the daily intelligence briefs he received, he and JFK and LBJ and the rest of that crew should all rot in hell for what they did!! I lost a lot of good friends in Vietnam because of their pigheadedness. I include Bill Moyers in that group as well because it was his ad that helped LBJ win the 1964 election and then Moyers sold the LBJ media line to the reporters for the rest of his time in DC. That man also is scum!!

Posted by: dick on June 2, 2005 08:32 PM

Alright, I wasn't alive to remember anything before the early 90s, but according friends and family of mine who lived during the 60s/70s, "El-BJ" was pretty much the same as FDR, except he apparently didn't fuck with the constitution quite as much, and his administration's conduction of the Viet Nam War helped to make things more difficult for Americans fighting the NVA than they had to be, straining the national will and eventually causing us to abandon the place after what, over a decade of fighting?

Let me know if I've misstated anything.

Posted by: JG22 on June 2, 2005 10:25 PM

The parallels to this present moment are crying for recognition.

But we are repeating what we failed to learn.

Happens every time.

Of course, Rummy and W know better. :--) For a nation dedicated to peace, we damn sure have been in a helluva lot of wars. (45 since the M/A)

If you justify Iraq, you justify the Northern Agression against the South. That is simply inescapable.

The same principle has applied since the Mex-Am War. The War of 1812 was the last truly defensive, and thus, the last "constitutional" war, that America fought.. But that dead letter (the Connie) rests under glass in Ole Philly.

It ain't if, just when.

Oh, BTW--get an accurate definition of "fascism." We are there. The acorn does not fall far from the oak . . . Prescott financed Hitler and the Axis . . . seems the lesson was well learned within the "fam" by the son and grandson.

This ought to spark some shit amongst all who do not know their history..

Another BTW--IKE got us into Vietnam--not JFK. But then there is that damn "repeat history" factor again.

Gonna go shoot some 8 ball and hoist a few brews. I am safe, as kids my son's age are dying to protect my oil supply. Like y'all, I should be content with such a notion.

I guess I agree witchoo all after all. :-)

Kill them flipping ragheads before they blow up our truckstops!


Posted by: jb on June 2, 2005 10:45 PM

Well, by your logic we were "there" in the 1960s as well. Wasn't Joe Kennedy a big Nazi booster?

Oh, well, didn't seem to have turned out so bad after all -- compared to say, N. Vietnam, eh? ;)

Now go take your Clozaril, moonbat. You've skipped a dose.

Posted by: JB_ on June 3, 2005 01:08 AM

Alright then, got a method to get out of Iraq NOW without leaving the population subject to a bunch of murdering psychos that want to cut the heads off of anyone who isn't religiously in line with them, or do you simply not give a shit about them? And of COURSE we're the Fascists, because God knows that sexually embarassing/electrocuting someone (who might be a terrorist) for information concerning where the next set of IEDs are gonna go off is FAR more evil than intentionally blowing up unarmed civilians and using a kid as a human shield in the name of God. I've listened to a few soldiers' comments on that EEEVVIIIILLL Right Wing Michael Savage Show on the AM Radio, and according to them, Iraq's army is in NO condition to take shit over from our guys. Of course, it's just a big 'ole OOOIIILLL WAR after all, so we have no reason to leave any time soon, as the following link will affirm:

I know we're getting off-topic here, but please read it ALL before posting one of your famous responses comparing our collective intellects to that of a single Feudal Serf.

Posted by: JG22 on June 3, 2005 03:19 AM

MacNamara and Hanoi Jane can spend the rest of eternity roasting in the hellfire and telling each other how much they cared for the American soldier.
Traitorous bastards.

Posted by: Henry Blowfly on June 3, 2005 03:58 AM

Well, gee... unless I'm mistaken, the way all the assholes in charge of "running" the war thought, it woulda been the dog's fault the puppies died after she got herself killed, no?

And, could this mindset not be why the term "military intelligence" seems like such an oxymoron?
(And, no, I'm not referring to the soldiers at all...)

Don't even get me started....
*rolls eyes*

Posted by: Stevie on June 3, 2005 07:18 AM

There are a couple of things that we should have learned from Vietnam.The first one is that if we get in a war we should go all out to win it. The second is that politicians don't know shit about conducting a war.

I remember the war well. I was on active duty from 1960 until 1983. I rememeber the bobming of Hanoi that brought the slants to the Paris Peace table and the halting of the bombing that let them regroup. I remember that the North ied through out the process claiming there were no North Vietnam regulars in the south. I also remember winning every major battle just to see politicians refuse to follow up and clean up.

There is a parallel in Iraq. Winning battles doesn't mean shit unless there are enough troops on the ground to protect and hold what is won. I saw the handwriting on the wall when I saw the media broadcast ragheads busting caps in the air with their AK47s in celebration of taking Bagdad. Why in hell were the nuts not disarmed? Why wasn't a village to village search and destroy process used to disarm the population and secure as we went.

A shock and awe bombing campaign and blitz attack looks good. But every military school on tactics I ever attended taught that securingwhat you took was paramount if you planned on staying there for a while.

Hanibal took much of Italy with a blitz but the Romans took him because he coundn't hold what he took. Patton made a lightning blitz across Europe, ran out of gas, bogged down and was damn lucky logistics caught up with him in time. The lessons were taught by history but politicians are too damn cocksure of themselves to learn a fucking thing.

Posted by: GUYK on June 3, 2005 07:50 AM

Ah, MacNamara, one of our wonderful experts, whithout whom life would be unliveable.

Posted by: Brett on June 3, 2005 07:53 AM

JB you dumbass, you really need to study history. 1. The South fired on the North after taking over Federaal Depots to start the Civil war. 2. By your reasoning, we started Korea since we had advisors there when the war started. I guess we were responsible for the Greek Civil war in the late 40's also?

Get a grip moonbat.

Posted by: hoosierboy on June 3, 2005 09:07 AM

Amen brother! MacNamara is one of the best example's of a total asshole.

Posted by: Eric Atkinson on June 3, 2005 10:56 AM

Thanks for the account, GuyK. I've heard numerous stories concerning why we lost/quit from people who were little more than infants when the war was coming to a close, but your explanation makes shit a lot more clearer. I remember Kim du Toit once said something similar, in relation to our horrendus delay in taking Fallujah: "Never let politicians get involved in the direction and conduction of a military operation." Too late now.

Posted by: JG22 on June 3, 2005 12:39 PM

I remember seeing part of an interview with this bastard a few years back, in which he said that he KNEW early on we 'couldn't win', but he HAD to go along with it to 'support his president'.

I was damn near screaming at the tv over this shit. SUPPORTING the president includes telling him facts whether he wants to hear them or not, and if he KNEW we couldn't win, and pushed for war anyway to 'support his president'...

Sorry sack of crap

Posted by: Mark on June 3, 2005 01:18 PM

Mark: we couldn't win because there was no fucking objective.' To win' insinuates that there is a goal to obtain. There was never a clear cut goal in Vietnam. territory taken was not held. Hanoi was brought to its knees by B52s and about a million pounds of bombs but when they cried uncle we let up and they took the time at the peace table to regroup, rearm, and push more regular into the south. It was a the political fuckup of all fuckups. But, if something doesn't give pretty damn quick in Iraq we may have the biggest fuckup of all times. Just as in Vietnam there is no clear stated objective except to kill the bad guys. DAMN!

Posted by: GUYK on June 3, 2005 02:47 PM

A-man, that is good advice. When I was a single mom many years ago, I lived in a little house on an alley, and a man tried to break in about 1:00 a.m. I heard him try the front door and try to open all the windows. I was terrified, had only a fire extinguisher in my hands! Next day the police were over, they said he had cut the telephone wires, and unscrewed the porch lights. They told me he was definitely out to get me; I was lucky, too, and a friend gave me a derringer, a beautiful little gun, but I was afraid to keep it in the house. I had a 2 yr. old at the time, and I was worried she would find it. Kept it in my car.

Posted by: Bonita on June 3, 2005 09:09 PM

Sorry, folks - that post is miss-placed. It's meant to go on the discussion of firearms!

Posted by: Bonita on June 3, 2005 09:13 PM

JB is closer to the facts of history. Ike and his "Domino Theory" led to America's foreign policy of "Containment" to keep communism from spreading globally, hence our involvement in French Indochina eventually leading up to the Vietnam War. A well-intentioned cause carried out by many brave young men who sacrified all for our freedom was undermined due to horrible planning by civilian leaders and idiot politicians who didn't listen. Sound familiar today?

Posted by: PJ on June 4, 2005 03:53 AM

MacNamara was a bean counter. A very good bean counter, but a bean counter nonetheless. Bean counters should never be in charge of anything but counting beans. Even then, you have to keep an eye on them so that they don't get creative with the counting and never let them apply their logic to anything.

An example might be an expensive part of a machine that periodically goes bad. The manufacturer charges $10,000 to rebuild it and it lasts for five years before needing rebuilt again. The bean counter finds someone who will rebuild it for $5,000 but unfortunately it only lasts for one year. By bean counter logic they are saving $5,000 every year.

MacNamara was that kind of bean counter and has inspired generations of the bastards.

Posted by: StinKerr on June 5, 2005 02:15 AM

I have to disagree. I saw that documentary and he said out of his own mouth that if we would have lost that war, then he would have been tried as a war criminal. So that right there is an admission that he knew he fucked up.

Posted by: MrNoGood on June 7, 2005 11:38 AM
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