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Stay the Failure

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Message John Moffett
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George W. Bush finally made it to Vietnam, about 37 years too late to help those of his generation who fought and died there. He used his rich and powerful father's family connections to avoid that potentially deadly fate, so he could stay home and drink beer and party with the other rich kids who were able to avoid the draft.

In a tour-de-force of irony, George Bush traveled to Vietnam this week and proclaimed that he learned the lesson of that failed war when he said; "One lesson is, is that we tend to want there to be instant success in the world, and the task in Iraq is going to take a while. We'll succeed unless we quit."

The absurd implication is that if we had stayed in Vietnam, we would have succeeded. This despite the fact that it was only after we left Vietnam that the country eventually turned itself around and embraced capitalism. Bush's remarks display a complete lack of cognizance of history, or geopolitics, and instead seem to be a stark affirmation of his delusional view of the world, and disregard for the harm his policies have wrought.

Stay the failure will be Bush's epitaph, and history will not look back kindly on his authoritarian presidency, nor the war of choice he prosecuted in Iraq. The long-term repercussions of stay the failure in Iraq will ensure distrust and even hatred of America throughout many parts of the world where goodwill and good deeds would have had much more positive outcomes.

Stay the failure sounds like a plan to continue war profiteering for the military industrial complex for years to come, rather than a plan to calm a riotous Middle East. It is time to admit that military force can not solve social and political problems in the Middle East, but that it can exacerbate them. Stay the failure? Only if we don't care about America, or the rest of the world.
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John R. Moffett PhD is a research neuroscientist in the Washington, DC area. Dr. Moffett's main area of research focuses on the brain metabolite N-acetylaspartate, and an associated genetic disorder known as Canavan disease.

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