Saturday, August 12, 2006

Lessons From Iwo

I know I mentioned it before but I think everyone should read the book Flags of our Fathers.

You've always heard that history repeats itself, or at least it has familiar ripples, and I think we have much to learn from WWII. In particular, as the Marines started taking island after island in the Pacific from the Japanese, the Emperor was faced with a few choices. His military commanders advised him that they would ultimately fail in defending the islands including the great island of Japan. The Emperor and his commanders concluded that perhaps their only hope was to force the US to realize that the cost in taking the islands would be so great that they would ultimately engage in some type of negotiations.

The Japanese realized that while militarily they would be doomed, their one real chance of success lied with the American people and its resolve to see it through. So the Japanese decided to dig in on the Pacific islands, building huge underground caves and cities, and ordering their soldiers to fight until the death with no option of surrender.

If the Japanese could inflict huge losses of life on the American forces, then the public back home might grow too uneasy with the casualties and pressure the Administration to negotiate with Japan.

History proved that while the Marines suffered much to advance just a few yards on every island they took, the American public was resolute.

In much the same way, the terrorists and insurgents of Iraq and accross the globe realize that militarily they are doomed to failure. Despite dressing as normal citizens and hiding behind women and children, they realize that they are just prolonging their inevitable failure. Their only hope, like the Japanese in WWII, is to try to weaken American resolve by making it as painful as possible. A large part of this includes using the Media as a tool in its hands. The Media was all to willing as the word "quagmire" came up just days after the invasion of Iraq.

It remains to be seen whether the American public has the same fortitude as that of the "Greatest Generation."


At 10:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great insight and well said. May we each demonstrate the mettle and moxy necessary to support our troops and cause to ultimate victory.


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