I’ve been “out of it” for a few months due to some sort of intestinal distress that has defied diagnosis. However, I seem to be back to my old self, whatever that was, and howling as much as ever.
Over the months, there have been a number of items in the news which have caused my ailing tummy to do flip-flops, not the least of which was President Obama’s declaration that the U.S. would be sending a small contingent of military advisers to Iraq.
On the surface, this may not seem to be very significant — unless one is old enough to remember a little skirmish in a remote part of the world, known as Vietnam. For those who are too young to have experienced the first war to be televised, I recommend CNN’s series, “The Sixties,” one episode of which reviews the events leading up to the Vietnamese War and U.S. involvement in the conflict. However, the one-hour program only deals with a single decade, but the impending conflict stretched over a much longer time period.
History in a Nutshell
During World War II, Indochina (a conglomerate of Southeast Asian nations) was held by Japan. However, at the end of the war, the O.S.S. (Office of Strategic Services, the predecessor of the Central Intelligence Agency) sent agents to Hanoi to negotiate with Ho Chi Minh. In just a couple of weeks, Ho declared Vietnam to be an independent republic...