# Modern Vietnam War Comparison

Look, I don’t want to say that Iraq is another Vietnam yet,

I just want to show a few stats that are intresting, and made me think.

I was sitting discussing the war with a buddy of mine, and we begun going through examples of history and how deadly Vietnam was, but then we thought, wait… if 58 000 americans died between the 1961 , when us troops to began to arrive as combat troops and cease fire in 1973…

thats about 12 people a day…

The Iraq war, is about 2 a day…

thats actualy, not that much off, in months like november the average rose to about 4 a day.

Not saying anything else, just making a comparison…

Just my little observation. It would be more like 13 a day for 12 years. 13 * 365 = 4745; 4745 * 12 = 56, 940; Just adding that one more person a day is 30 more dead people a month. 365 more dead a year. 4, 380 more dead in 12 years with just adding 1 more dead body to the equation. Not to metion the remaining 1, 060 people to get this number to 58, 000 making it 5, 440 more dead people than you allotted.

Also, the first 3 years, 1962 to 1964 there were casulaties of 392. That is 131 dead a year. Or, less than 1 every other day. That was back when the war was allowed to be fought and not overly politicised. Many great victories occured in the first years.

Now, lets look at 1968 to 1969 when the politics took hold of the war. The casulaties in 1968 were 16, 592 and 1969 were 11, 616. That is over 45 a day in 1968 and almost 32 a day in 1969. This is the peak of the protest and the politicins trying to decide how a war should be fought. So, from my calculations, I think that the more we protest and the more our polliticians weigh in with the expertise, the more American Casualties we will suffer.

In case anyone wants numbers http://www.archives.gov/research_room/research_topics/vietnam_war_casualty_lists/statistics.html

You are forgetting that we pulled out of vietnam war.

I don’t think there is a snowball’s chance in an oven that we are going to come up short in Iraq.

Saddly enough, people have to die in a war. If nobody died in a war, then it owuldn’t be much of a war would it?

It isn’t a war though. In either case a formal declaration of war was not introduced.

not that it matters… we all know they are wars… just trying to be difficult.

I am SHOCKED that you would even THINK to make a comparisson to Vietnam with this Iraqi war.

Liz!
I stated, its for obsirvation sake!
And why would I piss them off, I am comparing casualties…

12 and 2 is not far off…

Consider this,
in Korea, the US lost over 50 people daily.
in WW2, the US lost over 220 people daily.
in WW1, the US lost over 160 people daily.
in the US civil war 410 people daily.

Now 12 and 2 is very close, and like blindlizzard points out, sometimes casualties in Vietnam rose and fell, depending on the years, just like Iraq, bringing them close together.

I am not arguing the validity of the war, all I am doing is stating the casualties for people to consider.

usually when we get passionate about a subject our ability to read what’s writen goes out the window. I know it happens to me anyway. I knew right away you weren’t really comparing the validity of each.

(though you probebly coulda guessed at least one person would take it that way. )

PS liz didn’t say that.

We have become much more concerned with the number of people dying. We don’t see death in our lives like people use to. It is much more precious to us now. This is ironic that we care about our own kind so much, yet we go to war with people of another kind who also care about their own so much.

Liz!
I stated, its for obsirvation sake!
And why would I piss them off, I am comparing casualties…
That is not my quote you are talking about…It was BadMagick

Err, sorry blindlizard…

It was sort of a inside joke…

…when someone got hold of badmagics AIM and messaged him and though he was a girl named Liz
http://www.kirupaforum.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=46199&highlight=mistaken

Oh, my bad…sorry that is kinda funny

Your thread is titled “Modern Vietnam War compasison”

I see your numbers, and I also see this:

Look, I don’t want to say that Iraq is another Vietnam yet,
Like I said, I don’t even think you can mention Vietnam and Iraq in the same sentance.

The numbers are very different. 12 is not nearly the same as 2

Take the instantaneous rate of change (that’s the slope) of any line in mathematics and you’ll see an enormous difference between the two lines.

You can’t compare the two. It might seem close - but it’s not at all

You can compare the diffrecen

The diffrence between is 10!

Now compare vietnam to ww2: 202
WW1: 148
Civil War: 398

Now, mathimaticaly; what is smaller? 10, 202, 148 or 398? Hmm?
I think its obvious that its close.

Like I said, I don’t even think you can mention Vietnam and Iraq in the same sentance.

Why not? Whats the problem? I think I did sever times already. Is the vietnam war some secret story that can never be said again? What, will homeland security come get me?

Why can’t they be compared? Whats wrong with looking at a previous war, and then acessing the current one to it. Thats what history is for! Why the hell would we need history if we aren’t going to mention it?

And who are you to judge when we will mention it and wont.

And as a historian, I will make an informed guess on what the future of this conflict might be.

Both wars where very expensive, both war had similar casualty rates, both wars where very contreversial and both generated alot of protest. Both times it was the better trained US forces verus a more numerous, poorly trained yet resourcefull enemy. Both times the US forces faced guerrilla warfare.
Now, I understand where they are diffrent, for example US forces never destoryed the opposing goverment in vietnam, nor in Iraq there was any kind of face-to face engagments like against the NVA. Plus, the US forces have a good hold on Iraq, while it was far from that goal in vietnam.

So there, I compared it.

And based on this historical evedence, I am willing to state that US forces wont be out of Iraq by July.
Based on historical data.

So what now? Did I just commit a sacrelige against the vietnam vets?

You have no idea how terrible the war was for those Vietnam vets - and I have shown this thread to two vets who I know, and they were a little mad too, not just me.

They can’t believe that you are trying to compare something so serious as Vietnam to something like Iraq.

Those men were FORCED into fighting the Viet Cong, they had no way around it. They had to go, and they left HUGE parts of themselves overseas - some of them became so desensitized they couldn’t function in society anymore. They gave up careers, familes, and many gave their lives.

The men and women serving in Iraq are considered by just about everyone to be heroes. They get huge parties when they come back from service, and even get selected as Time’s “Person(s) of the Year.” It’s not the same kind of war at all.

I just think it’s disgusting to compare the two wars. Perhaps the casualties were “close” as you say (and 10 is a LARGE number when you talk about people dieing), but 12 soldiers a day lost lives. That’s 12 familes destroyed at least, and let’s not forget the ammount of people who lost their sanity over there.

These wars are SO different, well beyond the few statements you made.

So what?
Lets forget about vietnam?
Let those who die die for nothing? No, I want to make sure we don’t do the same thing again.

Thats why we study history! Because Iraq might turn in to a vietnam, it has all the ingrediants, it might become a place where people coming out are not treated like heroes anymore. Popular support for troops is there now, but it might not stay that way forever. Vietnam has shown us that.

Now the reason I show the casulaties is that people understand, while yes its true 2 is not 12 and there is a diffrence like you said. But its within possibilities. For example, its not realistic to think that there will be civil war-like casualties, but it is possible that casualties reach to 12 a day (there where days where more than 12 people died.) If thats possible, its possible that things get more desperate, fight more violent, popular support might crumble, the troops are human, and just as human as the people in vietnam were, capabale to deal the same violence and feel the same pain… and I want to avoid that…

Read on about early vietnam war, before popular opinion turned against it, it was even more easily compared to Iraq. When casulaties where low, draft was not needed, everyone was a volunteer and everyone was a hero.

Im with Russian. badmagic, your personal feelings about something, or the feelings of those who were there are not valid reasons for saying something cannot be compared. Well you can say it… but you really can’t expect us to respect it.

Apples and organges can be compared and contrasted just like everything else in the world, and these two aren’t even fruit. They are both military actions. They are absolutely the same on one level at least. If you refuse to see such because of emotional attachment to one war over another, then you’re just being ignorant and insulting to those who went into Iraq. Those soldiers died too. They suffered. They were wounded, sometimes permanently. Tell my friend Brian, whom is now suffering from permanent nerve damage, that his conflict wasn’t as serious as the vietnam conflict.

Of course they are different. In some ways very different. Personaly I feel worse for vietnam vets returning home than I do for desert storm vets. They were completely not appreciated for what they were going through. Still… these emotional attachments are good for teaching us lessons. As soon as they hinder our ability to compare military history, those emotions become a hinderance to our future.