What a difference a week makes. Last night the news hit that Walter Cronkite had died at age 92. I don’t recall feeling particularly bad about that, but my thoughts were captured this morning when a Fox News military correspondent pointed out that “Walter Cronkite was worth a 100,000 Michael Jacksons.” No doubt. At least they aren’t talking about Michael Jackson anymore.
However in addition to them endlessly saying that “Cronkite was the most trusted man in America” there is one very important piece that is droning over and over again as the news lavishes coverage on one of their own. The story that is part of nearly every Cronkite memorial segment is of when in 1968 after the convulsion of violence that was the Tet Offensive in Viet Nam – Cronkite went to Viet Nam. In the one hour special that resulted Walter Cronkite told the American people (and the world for that matter) that the Viet Nam War was a stalemate that could not be won. It was a stunning revelation and one that rocked the nation and its President, Lyndon Johnson. What is most astonishing today is that in this his most important opinion piece - Uncle Walter was utterly and completely wrong.
What we should have learned from that event was that one more liberal icon was not just wrong; he was for our Nation disastrously wrong. The North Vietnamese had thrown everything that they had at the combined South Vietnamese and American forces. Though you can say all you want about the lack of preparation or the element of surprise that the communists achieved, they were completely defeated. The communists had delivered their best shot, the allies had absorbed it and counter punched with devastating results. Estimates vary, but there is little question that more than half of the communist troops engaged were killed – probably more than 50,000 young men. They lost and they didn’t field a credible threat to South Viet Nam again until after US troops left leaving it to American advisors and the South Vietnamese to try and stem the tide.
But what is clear now is that a news guy with some impressive credentials, but absolutely no strategic military insight or experience said with great authority that we couldn’t win. Again – he couldn’t have been more wrong. We are seeing a very similar situation today as people like Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Dick Durbin, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, and . . . yes . . . President Barack Obama are speaking with great certainty about Health Care – they are disastrously wrong.
When Cronkite made his disastrous mistake, people were yelling – you are wrong! But he won out because people were comfortable with him, they liked him. Unfortunately, they believed him. President Barack Obama can look right through a teleprompter and into our eyes and with great conviction tell us a lie – we have to stop him.
Write your Congressman and your Senators we might stop the madness with the weight of public opinion.
Conservative Resistance – Day 257