The excuse for the wars in Southeast Asia was to protect Western democracy from the possible spread of Communism. To do this, the United States dropped over 7 million tons of bombs in Vietnam. In Laos, the US dropped 270 million cluster bombs and more than 20,000 Laotians have been killed by these bombs since the war.
In Cambodia, the US dropped 2.75 million tons of bombs.
For a comparison, in World War II a total of just over 2 million tons of bombs were dropped.
The Vietnam War lasted 19 years, 5 months, 4 weeks and 1 day. The number of military dead numbered in the millions. There is no way to count the number of civilian dead.
It is estimated that in Vietnam 411,000 – 2,000,000 civilians were killed; 20,000 – 200,000 in Laos, and 200,000 – 300,000 in Cambodia.
The United States is a peace loving nation!
What about government and religion in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia?
Vietnam has a Communist government. According to the CIA Factbook, 80.8% of the population belongs to no religion; 9.3% are Buddhists and 6.7% are Catholic (that’s almost seven times the ratio of Christians in Japan and we won that war).
In addition, Laos is still a Communist state. The predominant religion is Theravada Buddhism (67%). Animism is common among the mountain tribes. Buddhism and spirit worship coexist easily. There also are small numbers of Christians and Muslims—only 1.5% of the population is Christian.
Cambodia, however, is a multiparty democracy under a constitutional monarchy. It is no longer a Communist/Socialist state, and 96.4% of its population is Buddhist while 2.1% is Muslim. Despite the French colonization in the 19th century, Christianity made little impact in the country. There are around 20,000 Catholics in Cambodia which represents 0.15% of the total population and less than 2,000 Protestants.
If we use the result of America’s wars in Southeast Asia as an example of what is to come, what will the Middle East look like fifty years after the war in Afghanistan ends?
Continued on August 4, 2012 in The Blood Price – Part 4 or return to Part 2
Lloyd Lofthouse, a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, is the award winning author of The Concubine Saga.
His latest novel is Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.
And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to hate and kill Americans.
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