- Capitalism and Alternatives -


Posted by: Nikhil Jaikumar ( DSA , MA, USA ) on July 27, 1999 at 10:59:10:

In Reply to: Sorry. posted by Dr. Cruel on July 26, 1999 at 17:56:15:

There are plenty of other Communist experiments that were not authoritarian, bloody or economically dysfuncional, but you chose not to mention any of them. It's fine if you don't feel like discussing Kerala, Nicaragua, Chile, Burkina Faso, Namibia, or Zimbabwe, but please don't claim that by focusing on the worst leaders who opportunistically called themselves "communist", and neglecting the democratic or teh successful ones, your examples are in any way objective or typical.

You also chose not to mention the genocides, monstrous tyrannies and suffering that can be laid at teh door of capitalism. This gets my goat a little more, because a number of people have pointed out said exampled=, yet you choose not to respond to them. I'm frankly a bit baffled. Whatever.

However, your accusations about Vietnam need to be addressed. The econom suffered only because the US converted both halves of Vietnam into teh most heavily bombed country in history. babies in vietnam are still being born with brith defects due to Agent Orange, sprayed by the same government which ruined Vietnam's food supply. Wonderfully humanitarian, don't you think?

the US President himself admitted that about 80% of Vietnamese in both the North and teh South were in favor of Ho Chi Minh.

more americans, as a % of population, fled the American Revolution than Vietnamese fled teh Vietnamese revolution.

The Vietnamese Government initially actually said that any Vietnamese who wished to leave would be allowed to do so, as long as teh US promised they wouldn't be sent back as spies. The US declined.

The advances in health, literacy and political participation under the DRV were real. David Dellinger describes Saigon in '75 as a ruined society full of crime, poverty, squalor and social disharmony and hatred. Average Vietnamese were better off under the Communsits than under Diem.

Vietnam's invasion of Cambodia was a humanitarian intervention. No one else wanted to rid the world of pol Pot (by teh way, he expolicitly DENIED being a communist or being in any way ingfluenced by Vietnam.) If the US had stopped supporting Pol Pot (China was more guilty, of course) Vietnam could have pulled out their troops much earlier. In teh case of Laos, that was a popular revolution, not an invasion.

Your accusation that the Vietnamese invented new methods of brutality or were totalitarian do not bear scrutiny. There are many religious, economic and citizens' associations which exert power in teh government and have a say in decision-making. The VC were far less brutal than teh Guatemalans, the Salvadoran death squads, etc.

Read David Dellinger's book "Vietnam Revisited", it provides a fine counterpoint to many of your accusations.

Your evalutaion of China and north Korea i agree with, no argument there. About teh SU I won't comment except to say that South VN under Diem had many more political prisoners than '80s Russia, out of a much smaller population.

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