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footstepsfrom#27
07-06-2009, 04:55 PM
Bump if you wish mods...he's a huge historical figure...surpised it's not posted in here yet.

His admission that he continued to prosecute the war in spite of knowing it couldn't be won resulted in thousands of deaths...really dislike this guy for that, no matter what else he achieved.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090706/ap_on_go_ca_st_pe/obit_mcnamara

Vietnam War architect Robert McNamara dies at 93

WASHINGTON Robert S. McNamara, the brainy Pentagon chief who directed the escalation of the Vietnam War despite private doubts the war was winnable or worth fighting, died Monday at 93.

McNamara revealed his misgivings three decades after the American defeat that some called "McNamara's war."

"We of the Kennedy and Johnson administrations acted according to what we thought were the principles and traditions of our country. But we were wrong. We were terribly wrong," McNamara told The Associated Press in 1995, the year his best-selling memoir appeared.

McNamara died at 5:30 a.m. at his home, his wife Diana told the AP. She said he had been in failing health for some time.

Closely identified with the war's early years, McNamara was a forceful public optimist. He predicted that American intervention would enable the South Vietnamese, despite internal feuds, to stand by themselves "by the end of 1965." The war ground on until 1975, with more than 58,000 U.S. deaths.

Lawyerly and a student of statistical analysis, McNamara was recruited to run the Pentagon by President John F. Kennedy in 1961 from the presidency of the Ford Motor Co. where he and a group of colleagues had been known as the "whiz kids."

He stayed in the defense post for seven years, longer than anyone else since the job's creation in 1947. He left on the verge of a nervous breakdown and became president of the World Bank. In the new post, he threw himself into the intricacies of international development and argued that improving lives was a more promising path to peace than building up arms and armies.

McNamara was a distinctive figure, with frameless glasses and slicked-back hair. Anti-war critics ridiculed him as an out-of-touch technocrat and made much of the fact that his middle name was "Strange." Simon and Garfunkel worked his name into a ditty about an overbearing government, and he once had to flee an appearance at Harvard through underground utility tunnels.

By the end of his Pentagon tenure, McNamara had come to doubt the value of widespread U.S. bombing, and he was fighting with his generals. President Lyndon Johnson lost faith or patience in him; McNamara would later write that he didn't know if he quit or was fired.

In the Kennedy administration, McNamara was a key figure in both the disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion of April 1961 and the Cuban missile crisis 18 months later. The missile episode was the closest the world came to a nuclear confrontation between the Soviet Union and the United States, and historians have pointed to McNamara's role in steering internal debate away from a U.S. airstrike.

Reticent, McNamara long resisted offers to give a detailed accounting of his role in Vietnam. His son, who had protested the war his father helped to run, once said it was not within McNamara's "scope" to be reflective about the war.

McNamara's eventual mea culpa won him admiration from some former opponents of the war. Others said it was not enough, and three decades too late.

"Where was he when we needed him?" a Boston Globe editorial asked.

Ted Sorensen, a speechwriter and adviser who worked with McNamara in both the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, said the criticism missed the mark.

"Most military chieftains presidents or Cabinet members or otherwise don't admit error, ever," Sorensen said. "At least Bob had the courage and commitment to truth to put out that he was wrong and why it was wrong so that we could all learn the lessons from that."

"In Retrospect: The Tragedy and Lessons of Vietnam" appeared in 1995. McNamara disclosed that by 1967 he had deep misgivings about Vietnam by then he had lost faith in America's capacity to prevail over guerrillas who had driven the French from the same jungle countryside.

Despite those doubts, he had continued to express public confidence that the application of enough American firepower would cause the Communists to make peace. In that period, the number of U.S. casualties dead, missing and wounded went from 7,466 to over 100,000.

McNamara wrote later that he and others had not asked five basic questions: "Was it true that the fall of South Vietnam would trigger the fall of all Southeast Asia? Would that constitute a grave threat to the West's security? What kind of war conventional or guerrilla might develop? Could the U.S. win with its troops fighting alongside the South Vietnamese? Should the U.S. not know the answers to all these questions before deciding whether to commit troops?

He discussed similar themes in the 2003 documentary "The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara." With the U.S. in the first year of the war in Iraq, it became a popular and timely art-house attraction and won the Oscar for best documentary feature.

McNamara served as the World Bank president for 12 years. He tripled its loans to developing countries and changed its emphasis from grandiose industrial projects to rural development before retiring in 1981.

He was born June 9, 1916, in San Francisco, son of the sales manager for a wholesale shoe company. At the University of California at Berkeley, he majored in mathematics, economics and philosophy.

As a professor at the Harvard Business School when World War II started, he helped train Army Air Corps officers in cost-effective statistical control. In 1943, he was commissioned an Army officer and joined a team of young officers who developed a new field of statistical control of supplies.

McNamara and his colleagues sold themselves to the Ford organization as a package and revitalized the company. The group became known as the "whiz kids" and McNamara was named the first Ford president who was not a descendant of Henry Ford.

A month later, the newly elected Kennedy invited McNamara, a registered Republican, to join his Cabinet. Taking the $25,000-a-year job cost McNamara $3 million in Ford stocks and options.

As defense chief, McNamara reshaped America's armed forces for "flexible response" and away from the nuclear "massive retaliation" doctrine espoused by former Secretary of State John Foster Dulles. He asserted civilian control of the Pentagon and applied cost-accounting techniques and computerized systems analysis to defense spending.

Early on, Kennedy regarded South Vietnam as an area threatened by Communist aggression and a proving ground for his new emphasis on counterinsurgency forces. A believer in the domino theory that countries could fall to communism like a row of dominoes Kennedy dispatched U.S. "advisers" to bolster the Saigon government. Their numbers surpassed 16,000 by the time of his assassination.

Following Kennedy's death, President Johnson retained McNamara as "the best in the lot" of Kennedy Cabinet members and the man to keep Vietnam from falling as the war escalated.

At a Feb. 29, 1968, retirement ceremony, McNamara was overcome with emotion and could not speak. Johnson put an arm around his shoulder and led him from the room.

McNamara's first wife, Margaret, whom he met in college, died of cancer in 1981; they had two daughters and a son. In 2004, at age 88, he married Italian-born widow Diana Masieri Byfield.

___

Associated Press Writers Glen Johnson in Boston and Warren Levinson in Washington contributed to this report.

loborugger
07-06-2009, 05:03 PM
Not much to like here.

watermock
07-06-2009, 05:03 PM
Wrong man for the time.

We needed someone unafraid to get dirt under his nails, not a pencil pusher.

As defense chief, McNamara reshaped America's armed forces for "flexible response" and away from the nuclear "massive retaliation" doctrine espoused by former Secretary of State John Foster Dulles. He asserted civilian control of the Pentagon and applied cost-accounting techniques and computerized systems analysis to defense spending.

scorpio
07-06-2009, 05:06 PM
Good night, sweet prince.

elsid13
07-06-2009, 05:14 PM
The young ones in my office had no idea who he was. He had such impact on today's modern military that goes beyond what most people understand.

mhgaffney
07-06-2009, 06:49 PM
One of the biggest war criminals of the 20th century.

broncosteven
07-06-2009, 07:09 PM
Not much to like here.

I was thinking the same ****ing thing.

The guy should have stayed in private sector.

broncosteven
07-06-2009, 07:09 PM
Good night, sweet prince.

Hamlet for this a-hole?

MrPeepers
07-06-2009, 07:37 PM
easy to criticize when your not walking in one mans shoes. A good chunk of you would have used a marshmallow gun to get your points across.

We did get through the Bay of Pigs.

In his later years he admitted his faults. War is a dirty business.

broncosteven
07-06-2009, 07:59 PM
easy to criticize when your not walking in one mans shoes. A good chunk of you would have used a marshmallow gun to get your points across.

We did get through the Bay of Pigs.

In his later years he admitted his faults. War is a dirty business.

He was guessing during the early 60's.

Did you see the Documentary he did a few years back? He kinda said he ****ed up but not really.

I liked him even less after I saw it.

Natedogg
07-06-2009, 08:24 PM
More egregious than his misassessment of the anti-colonial war in Vietnam was his disregard for human life. Indeed, during his whole career he relied upon statistics and figures, bomb tonnage and kill counts, rather than human, hearts, minds, aspirations, and reason.

To me, the most disquieting fact about McNamara's career is that he gained his reliance upon numbers rather than people during the "Good War," as he calculated the bomb tonnage necessary to kill the statistically-determined quantity of Tokyo civilians to force capitulation.

Its easy to denigrate the architect of Vietnam, but impossible to smear a WW2 vet. Even though they are the same person.

Natedogg
07-06-2009, 08:57 PM
<embed id="VideoPlayback" src="http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docid=-6479662076453370496&hl=en&fs=true" style="width:400px;height:326px" allowFullScreen="true" allowScriptAccess="always" type="application/x-shockwave-flash"> </embed> (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0XcAefqyb0&feature=player_embedded)

Natedogg
07-06-2009, 08:58 PM
<object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/P0XcAefqyb0&hl=en&fs=1&"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/P0XcAefqyb0&hl=en&fs=1&" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>

BroncoBuff
07-06-2009, 09:14 PM
Very misunderstood guy.

Absolutely ... a MUST see:

http://www.facets.org/images/fog%20of%20war.jpg

Rohirrim
07-06-2009, 09:15 PM
**** McNamara.

BroncoBuff
07-06-2009, 09:27 PM
Fascinating movie ... as its president, Mac made Ford the first car company to include seat belts in all their models.

His middle name is Strange ... literally "Robert Strange MacNamara."

A few weeks before his wedding, his bride-to-be sent him a telegram: "We need to know your middle name for the marriage license." He telegrammed back, "it's Strange." She replied, "that's okay, I don't care what it is, but I need to know for the license."

Seamus
07-06-2009, 10:04 PM
Knowing Air Force history you will understand the colorful life of Curtis LeMay and his achievements in building the Air Force. He was a thorn in McNamara's side recommending from his experience tactics to improve the results in Vietnam. They were later implemented under Nixon as Linebacker I and II (hey even some football lingo).

BroncoBuff
07-06-2009, 10:10 PM
**** Lemay.

Pseudofool
07-06-2009, 10:54 PM
His fault was positivism; he thought statistical models could somehow guide war-making decisions.

BroncoBuff
07-07-2009, 12:54 AM
Curtis Lemay was dangerously insane warmonger.

Rumor has it Walter Matthau's character in "Dr. Strangelove" was inspired by Lemay.

fido
07-07-2009, 04:11 AM
good riddance

C130Herkload
07-07-2009, 04:31 AM
Curtis Lemay was dangerously insane warmonger.

Rumor has it Walter Matthau's character in "Dr. Strangelove" was inspired by Lemay.

You mean George C Scott, not Matthau.

alkemical
07-07-2009, 05:47 AM
93 93/93

Borks147
07-07-2009, 06:33 AM
Knowing Air Force history you will understand the colorful life of Curtis LeMay and his achievements in building the Air Force. He was a thorn in McNamara's side recommending from his experience tactics to improve the results in Vietnam. They were later implemented under Nixon as Linebacker I and II (hey even some football lingo).

LeMay was one in a long line of Air Force Commanders who swore that the air campaign in Europe during WW2 was the sole key to victory and then tried to fit a square peg into a round hole in Vietnam. Linebacker I and II did jack **** in the long run.

TailgateNut
07-07-2009, 08:48 AM
Good ridance to Cheneys' half brother.

Natedogg
07-07-2009, 08:51 AM
His fault was positivism; he thought statistical models could somehow guide war-making decisions.

I think youre right.

Borks147
07-07-2009, 10:08 AM
Damn, a lot of hate for what I consider a patriot. A guy that should've stayed in the private sector, sure. But you can't lay all the blame on him for the war and he devoted his life to his country.

TailgateNut
07-07-2009, 10:11 AM
Damn, a lot of hate for what I consider a patriot. A guy that should've stayed in the private sector, sure. But you can't lay all the blame on him for the war and he devoted his life to his country.


You may consider him a patriot, but that doesn't keep others from celebrating his demise. Too bad it didn't happen 5 decades ago.

BroncoBuff
07-07-2009, 10:25 AM
You mean George C Scott, not Matthau.

Yes, I was confusing 'Failsafe' with 'Strangelove' ... you're right.

footstepsfrom#27
07-07-2009, 12:26 PM
Damn, a lot of hate for what I consider a patriot. A guy that should've stayed in the private sector, sure. But you can't lay all the blame on him for the war and he devoted his life to his country.
What's your definition of "patriot"?

Natedogg
07-07-2009, 12:50 PM
Bunch of good op eds in the Washington Post today.

Endy
07-07-2009, 01:57 PM
McNamara knew the war was a lost cause in 1963. Then Kennedy was killed and LBJ told McNamara to STFU about pulling out and get in line with Westmoreland's requests. McNamara's gravest error was that he didn't resign at that point because no matter how many numbers he pushed around, the U.S. was never going to win that war. And he knew it, but tried it anyway.

I've got no hate for the guy, but placing his dedication to country and allegiance to his superiors over his obviously pragmatic understanding of wartime necessity became unbalanced and led him to chase an unachievable goal with a bad policy.

footstepsfrom#27
07-07-2009, 03:21 PM
I've got no hate for the guy, but placing his dedication to country and allegiance to his superiors over his obviously pragmatic understanding of wartime necessity became unbalanced and led him to chase an unachievable goal with a bad policy.
A true dedication to country would have compelled him to do the right thing and resign, then tell the truth. Whatever his motivation was...I can't all dedication to country.

Endy
07-07-2009, 04:27 PM
A true dedication to country would have compelled him to do the right thing and resign, then tell the truth. Whatever his motivation was...I can't all dedication to country.

I suppose that depends upon whether he thought dedication would be staying as SOD and trying to do what he was chosen to do or by resigning. He never regretted his decision (as he says quite plainly) but if he had it to do over again he would have likely chosen a different path that would have gotten him fired much sooner. You have the benefit of criticizing him over 30 years after the fact and he has levied many of the same criticisms on himself. How many public officials ever do that? Finally, I'm not sure I got the memo that states you are the final authority on what true dedication to one's country looks like. If you'd like to explain your qualifications, I'd be glad to listen. :thumbsup:

footstepsfrom#27
07-07-2009, 07:07 PM
:flower: I suppose that depends upon whether he thought dedication would be staying as SOD and trying to do what he was chosen to do or by resigning. He never regretted his decision (as he says quite plainly) but if he had it to do over again he would have likely chosen a different path that would have gotten him fired much sooner. You have the benefit of criticizing him over 30 years after the fact and he has levied many of the same criticisms on himself. How many public officials ever do that? Finally, I'm not sure I got the memo that states you are the final authority on what true dedication to one's country looks like. If you'd like to explain your qualifications, I'd be glad to listen. :thumbsup:
Well I would say my qualifications are as follows:

1) He admits he got tens of thousands of US servicemen killed in a war he knew was lost, but chose to lie to the American people rather than admit.

2) No memo was sent, but most people with a brain can make the massive leap in logic that when you come out and admit you ****ed up royally and got thousands killed, maybe you should have just not done that in the first place.

Clear enough?

MrPeepers
07-07-2009, 07:15 PM
:flower:
Well I would say my qualifications are as follows:

1) He admits he got tens of thousands of US servicemen killed in a war he knew was lost, but chose to lie to the American people rather than admit.

2) No memo was sent, but most people with a brain can make the massive leap in logic that when you come out and admit you ****ed up royally and got thousands killed, maybe you should have just not done that in the first place.

Clear enough?

still don't get how those qualify as YOUR qualifications. not clear to me at any route.

Endy
07-07-2009, 07:40 PM
:flower:
Well I would say my qualifications are as follows:

1) He admits he got tens of thousands of US servicemen killed in a war he knew was lost, but chose to lie to the American people rather than admit.

2) No memo was sent, but most people with a brain can make the massive leap in logic that when you come out and admit you ****ed up royally and got thousands killed, maybe you should have just not done that in the first place.

Clear enough?

So your premise is that McNamara is solely to blame for the loss of American life in Vietnam despite the fact that he was the civilian cabinet member in charge of the defense department and not the military commander in charge of fighting a war using the wrong strategy or the commander in chief who argued with or ignored any suggestion that McNamara made regarding the drawing down of American involvement in the war.

And McNamara never said that "he" ****ed up royally, he always said that "we" ****ed up royally. Say what you want about his decisions, and I won't argue about most of them, but his idea of dedication to his country was to try and do his job to the best of his ability. He was not a monster, nor was he solely to blame for the disaster that was Vietnam. To say that what he did was not "true" dedication means that we should all agree with your definition of dedication. Sorry, but I don't believe that dedication and absolute truth are compatible due to the interpretation of intention that will always be necessary to assess one's dedication to a cause. I don't happen to agree with your interpretation though I respect your right to hold it. It is unfortunate that you assume that my decision to disagree with you means that I must somehow be less intelligent than you are. I can assure you, that is not the case.

gunns
07-07-2009, 07:51 PM
A true dedication to country would have compelled him to do the right thing and resign, then tell the truth. Whatever his motivation was...I can't all dedication to country.

Sounds almost like Colin Powell.

footstepsfrom#27
07-07-2009, 08:46 PM
still don't get how those qualify as YOUR qualifications. not clear to me at any route.
I was responding to the sarcasm I got with futher sarcasm.

footstepsfrom#27
07-07-2009, 08:54 PM
So your premise is that McNamara is solely to blame for the loss of American life in Vietnam...
Yes I said exactlly that...absolutely...good call!
To say that what he did was not "true" dedication means that we should all agree with your definition of dedication.
Yes I'm probably the only one who thinks this way...another salient point on your part.
It is unfortunate that you assume that my decision to disagree with you means that I must somehow be less intelligent than you are. I can assure you, that is not the case.
Can you? Interesting...how could you do that?

Nice job fighting a non-existent battle with me over things I never said.

footstepsfrom#27
07-07-2009, 08:56 PM
Sounds almost like Colin Powell.
Rep.

Endy
07-08-2009, 05:14 AM
Yes I said exactlly that...absolutely...good call!

You said that "he" got them killed when in fact he was only one of the people involved in the decision.

Yes I'm probably the only one who thinks this way...another salient point on your part.

Just because others may agree with you does not make your definition of "true" any more "true"

Can you? Interesting...how could you do that?

An assurance is just that, an assurance. It does not require proof. However, if you'd like to compare qualifications, I'd be more than happy to put you in your place.

Nice job fighting a non-existent battle with me over things I never said.

At this point it is clear that you had no idea what you said.


Shall I take your digression from the point to a regression into sarcasm and deflection to mean that you are finished contributing anything other than the following?

1. McNamara is bad because Vietnam was bad.
2. I think this therefore it is true.
3. Other people think this too, therefore I am right.
4. I don't know what "assure" means.
5. I write in absolutes but don't understand the implications of my own words.

Your high school debate team didn't know what it was missing out on.

footstepsfrom#27
07-08-2009, 07:25 AM
Shall I take your digression from the point to a regression into sarcasm and deflection to mean that you are finished contributing anything other than the following?

1. McNamara is bad because Vietnam was bad.
2. I think this therefore it is true.
3. Other people think this too, therefore I am right.
4. I don't know what "assure" means.
5. I write in absolutes but don't understand the implications of my own words.

Your high school debate team didn't know what it was missing out on.
Take it any way you want to...in case you're missing it, I could care less what you think.

Endy
07-08-2009, 08:03 AM
Take it any way you want to...in case you're missing it, I could care less what you think.


Actually, I think you meant you couldn't care less, but something tells me that you probably could.

~Crash~
07-08-2009, 12:22 PM
Good ridance to Cheneys' half brother.

So you are saying we lost the Iraq war hmmm ....

gunns
07-08-2009, 07:29 PM
So you are saying we lost the Iraq war hmmm ....

Did we win? What exactly?

L.A. BRONCOS FAN
07-08-2009, 07:52 PM
More egregious than his misassessment of the anti-colonial war in Vietnam was his disregard for human life. Indeed, during his whole career he relied upon statistics and figures, bomb tonnage and kill counts, rather than human, hearts, minds, aspirations, and reason.

To me, the most disquieting fact about McNamara's career is that he gained his reliance upon numbers rather than people during the "Good War," as he calculated the bomb tonnage necessary to kill the statistically-determined quantity of Tokyo civilians to force capitulation.



QFT.

If there is a hell, then this despicable POS must certainly have a golden circle seat.

mhgaffney
07-09-2009, 12:21 AM
In America the pus rises to the top. Go figure.