Iraq and Vietnam: Differences, Similarities, and Insights

  • May 01, 2004
  • Dr Jeffrey Record, Dr W Andrew Terrill

U.S. political and military difficulties in Iraq have prompted comparisons to the American war in Vietnam. The authors conclude that the military dimensions of the two conflicts bear little comparison. Among other things, the sheer scale of the Vietnam War in terms of forces committed and losses incurred dwarfs that of the Iraq War. They also conclude, however, that failed U.S. state-building in Vietnam and the impact of declining domestic political support for U.S. war aims in Vietnam are issues pertinent to current U.S. policy in Iraq.