Scretary Rusk’s Address
I was thinking about the parallels that have been drawn between the Iraq war and the Vietnam War. A lot of people are talking about it… and being shouted down by just as many people. So, I decided to try to find some primary documents from the ‘60s. I ran across this speech given by Secretary Rusk. I took the speech into Word, replaced “South Viet-Nam” with “Iraq”. I replaced “North Viet-Nam” and “Communists” with “Terrorists”. Here are some of the more interesting passages I got. It’s a little eerie, actually. Just change a couple proper names and catch phrases, and it could be given to the Heritage Foundation tomorrow.
“Obviously, the first essential in building a durable peace is to eliminate aggression- by preventing it, if possible, and by repelling it when it occurs or is threatened.”
“. . . . But the principal Terrorists states remain publicly committed to what they call ‘wars of liberation’-the infiltration of arms and trained men. That is the type of aggression by which Terrorists Terrorists set Out to conquer Iraq. It is an aggression which has become less and less in-direct since the closing months of 1964, when Terrorists began to move an entire division of its regular army into Iraq.”
“Four successive Presidents of the United States, after extended study in consultation with their chief advisers on defense and foreign policy, have concluded that the security of Southeast Asia (ed. Middle East), and of Iraq in particular, is very important to the security of the United States. Those who take a different view are at odds with the men who have borne the highest responsibility for the defense of the United States and the free world since the Second World War.”
“In accordance with our national interest in the security of Iraq, the Government of the United States made commitments…”
“The United States cannot run away from its commitments. If either our adversaries or our friends should begin to doubt that the United States will honor its alliances, the result could be catastrophe.”