Bye-Bye Liz Cheney

1 And at that time, we could have won WW III pretty handily; although the Soviets had nukes by then, they were few, and had inferior means of delivery (Tupolev copies of the B-29; we had the B-47 Stratojet by then, and aerial refueling capability was on the way). I doubt that China and Russia would have considered Korea worth getting nuked for. As for China going commie in the first place, thank Truman for screwing that one up, too (Chiang Kai-shek had his faults, but by refusing to support him, Truman tacitly enabled Mao).
2 They are now.
3 I know. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have fought it to win when we were committed.
4 You can’t “contain” cancer. You either eradicate it, or it spreads. That said, and as I said earlier, only God can set things to rights in the end.

Remember that you were dealing with Joe Stalin in 1950, not one of the later leaders.

I know that this is an unpopular view, but I don’t see much difference between Stalin and Hitler except for geography. Hitler was in relatively small country in Central Europe and needed to fight wars to take territory. Stalin was in a large country that need to be subdued and conquered. When Hitler and Stalin were buddies, they carved up Poland. Both of them were brutal dictators who didn’t care who they needed to kill to get what they wanted.

I think that we would have been in World War III if MacArthur had gotten to do what wanted. I know that you don’t agree with me, but both of us are dealing in historical speculation, which always a guess.

We had North Korea licked 10 years earlier, that didn’t matter. China had the manpower and resources to keep the war going indefinitely.

Strategically, we knew we couldn’t repeat that conflict in Vietnam without leaving other objectives insecure. So it becomes a matter of trade offs and priorities.

Which is more important? Fighting pajama-clad guerrillas and Chinese human waves in a place that’s unstable and offers no strategic advantage?

Or keeping the Soviets from trying salami tactics in Europe? Or leaving open a window for a renewed invasion in Korea? Places that unlike Vietnam were stable and we had the populace on our side?

Your position assumes that there was no contest of strategy or resources between theatres. Or that China wouldn’t get involved. The real planning of the war efforts didn’t have the luxury to assume either.

But while we didn’t have a nuke monopoly, we did have the corner on the market. Neither Hitler, nor Stalin, nor Mao would have wanted to be nuked.

Not while being nuked.

How casually you suggest an atrocity.

When you’ve got some spare time, check out this film

It’s a 1983 look into the immediate and lingering effects of the atomic bomb. The author was also a survivor of one of the blasts.

Sorry @Gene. I don’t click on this any attachments like this because of computer viruses. I spent a fortune on getting them off of my desk top.

If you have a point, make it yourself.

No worries, it’s a film I actually meant for @Fantasy_Chaser

Not a victory worth having and certainly not worth the risk of Soviet response.

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Aside from say “NO!” to communist aggression, South Korea was not worth saving for a while. It was run by dictators until it made a positive turn about 40 years ago. Now it’s a success story from capitalism.

According to “Investtopedia” it has the 12 largest economies in the world. South Korea is ahead of Australia, Spain and Indonesia to name a few. That is pretty remarkable given its size and the fact that it has had to deal with a hostile neighbor.

In contrast, North Korea has 60% of its population living in poverty and ranks 115 in the GDP list.

We inherited control of South Korea from Japan, and the people were on our side.

The country was stable.

None of this applies to Vietnam. We didn’t inherent it, we intruded on it, the people were as much against us as for us, and nothing there was stable. They had 4 presidents in a year, they had constant assassinations of their leadership, they had protestors in the street setting themselves on fire.

South Vietnam was chaos, and chaos isn’t really any better than a communist dictatorship.

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Nothing casual about it. Atrocities have resulted from failure to do it. Also, showing a resolve to do it would have made wholesale nuking unnecessary.

And North Korea is quite the failure of U.S. credibility (so is Vietnam). And South Korea’s capitalistic success is under the shadow of the North Korean threat.

1 Disagree with the first, and what response would the Soviets have made when they were facing the prospect of being nuked themselves? At that time, we were pretty much holding all the aces.

2 I’m no fan of anarchy, but organized evil is worse.

Nothing on the scale you’re suggesting. The casualty toll on Korea and Vietnam combined isn’t anywhere close to nuking even just a handful of Chinese cities.

Nuking China into submission, killling millions, over non-strategic territory?

Uh, no, the gains aren’t worth it.

You’re saying “it’s alright to nuke a proxy conflict”

So what does that mean? They can nuke Turkey, they can nuke Afghanistan, they can nuke Hungary,

They can nuke any conflict they don’t want a conventional fight for, so long as the country in question doesn’t have nukes themselves.

And all they’d have to do is point to us doing it as justification. We opened the door for it.

Doesn’t matter, the people themselves didn’t want the order we were bringing. It was their choice, and they chose the chaos.

There are no stakes worth fighting for. It’s not strategic, it certainly wasn’t worth leaving Europe under defended, and it wasn’t worth breaking the taboo on nuclear weapon use.

1 What’s the body count on the Mao purges?

2 Who said anything about millions? Even with Japan’s fanatical refusal to surrender, only two nukes got them to knuckle under. The Chinese and the Soviets probably wouldn’t take more than one, and maybe none if our threat to do so were credible.

3 I don’t even know what you mean by “it’s all right to nuke a proxy conflict.” Anyway, as I’ve indicated, showing a credible willingness to nuke may be all that’s necessary. Tyrants are cowards.

4 I’ve heard otherwise from at least one Vietnam vet.

Nothing would have stopped those purgaes. Those happened because of farm collectivization and people starving to death.

You’re talking about taking those same fields, and making them irradiated.

You aren’t saving lives.

Macarthur’s plan would have killed millions, that’s what you “buy” by setting off 20-30 nukes.

Then you don’t understand what those conflicts were.

Both us and the Soviets were probing and setting boundaries in Vietnam and Korea. What was and wasn’t within bounds for proxy conflicts.

If we decided nukes were fair game for deciding them, the Soviets would have no qualms doing the same. And we would handed them the justification. We would have seen bombs go off all over Africa and Asia as a consequence.

So to sum up, your plan doesn’t factor China joining the war, and using nukes to counter that, doesn’t factor the effects of escalation.

The Soviets not having the best missiles, says nothing of them using perfectly fine T-4 or newer bombers to deliver Hydrogen Bombs to whatever conflict they decide to settle in their favor.

You also aren’t keeping history in mind; the Sino-Soviet split. We were able to take advantage of that because we were losing interest in Vietnam, and Vietnam sided with the Soviets.

Vietnam went through several conflicts with China after we left, which continue to this day. The Communists were left fractured and in disarray fighting each other, and all we had to do was sit out.

That is much better strategic math for us.