Obamas Vietnam-Syndrom

NEW HAVEN – Für den Krieg in Afghanistan kann es keine militärische, sondern nur eine politische Lösung geben. Beim Schreiben dieses Satzes überkommt mich eine Langeweile, die mich fast ohnmächtig werden lässt. Wer möchte schon, während US-Präsident Barack Obama überlegt, wie es mit diesem Krieg weitergeht, ein Faktum wiederholen, das bereits tausend Mal festgehalten wurde? Gibt es jemanden auf dieser Welt, der noch nicht weiß, dass man einen Guerilla-Krieg nicht für sich entscheiden kann, ohne „das Herz und den Verstand“  der Menschen zu gewinnen? Die amerikanische Öffentlichkeit weiß das seit der amerikanischen Niederlage in Vietnam.

Die Amerikaner sind gewohnt zu glauben, dass aus den bitteren Erfahrungen ihres Landes in Vietnam gewisse Lehren gezogen wurden, die ihren Niederschlag in Vorsichtsprinzipien fanden. Allerdings geben kürzlich freigegebene historische Dokumente etwas viel Seltsameres preis. Die meisten dieser Lehren waren – obwohl dies öffentlich nicht eingeräumt wird – schon bekannt, bevor die USA den Krieg in Vietnam eskalieren ließen.

Dieser Unterschied ist wesentlich. Hätte man das Vietnam-Desaster nämlich in vollem Wissen um diese „Lehren“ vom Zaun gebrochen, stellt sich die Frage, warum diese Lehren diesmal wirksamer sein sollten. Es scheint, als ob es anderer Lehren bedürfte.

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