posted on Sep, 20 2009 @ 02:58 PM
I don't think that the issues posed by the original poster are the reasons why the US could not "win" a war, but there are reasons why we or anyone
else could not win a war. If the enemy simply refuses to surrender, and the US is not willing to simply kill everyone (as was done in past wars) then
one could say that the US could not win that war. In Vietnam, by any reasonable standard we had devastated the enemy. Where we lost 50,000 troops
the extimates are the the North Vietnamese lost 1 million, and this was in an environment where the US was purposely not simply attempting to level
Even in Vietnam if the generals and politicians had said, do what it take to win, we certainly could have inflicted so much damage to the North that
the question of who one would have been academic (nobody left to surrender). If you allow the use of nuclear weapons the US could win any war in a
couple of hours. The real question comes down to what kind of war are we talking about. If for example Kim Jong Ill decided to launch his long range
missiles at the US and he managed to take out Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles, and the US decided that the only way to keep him from doing more
damage was to take out North Korea, we could do it in a couple of hours. There would be nothing alive in North Korea to surrender, so I think that by
some definition that would be a victroy over a dangerous enemy.
If you are talking about an invasion of Iran to eliminate their nuclear capability, well I suppose the US could do that as well. What the US cannot
do is to occupy a country that has people in it that do not want the US there, but where we do not have a disagreement with the populace sufficient to
justify killing them all. The US could "win" in Iraq if it didn't care who got killed, but they cannot win when they are supposedly trying to
bring democracy to a country in which a substantial portion of the people don't want that forced on them by the US.
The US won against Japan for 3 reasons. 1. THe US was willing to kill everyone in Japan if it came down to it, and the Japanese came to understand
that fact. 2. The government of Japan actually cared about their people enough to not want to see them all killed. 3. the US was willing to commit
huge numbers of troop to occupying Japan and keeping a lid on any terrorist activity. Remeber that the US sent more troops into Japan and Germany
(each of them) at the end of WW2 than the US has in it's entire military today. The US had hopelessly too few troops in Iraq at the end of the
invasion to provide security, because the US doesn't have enough troops to be able to send enough to provide security.
Yes the US could win a war, if the will to do what is needed to win is there. The will to win existed in WW2 because the US had an aggressive enemy
that was an immediate threat to the US. In Irag there was never a serious threat, and certainly none existed after the invasion, so the will to
continue the war until no resistance existed simply was not there. If the US had said after reaching Bhagdad, "we won", well most people would have
probably agreed. If the US then pulled out all it's troops and said to the middle east, "if any country tries to develope WMD we will invade and
remove the government" they would have probably been listened too.