Friday, December 26, 2003

Nathan Newman:

I saw the documentary The Fog of War and was fascinated that Robert McNamara referred to himself as a war criminal, NOT in regard to Vietnam, where his self-judgment was somewhat ambiguous, but about his role in World War II. Back then, he was on the statistical team that helped plan the bombings of Japanese cities, which led to the total devastation of most of them and over 300,000 civilian deaths; Hiroshima was in many ways a sideline to the much broader conventional firebombing of their cities.

And McNamara noted his role as war criminal would only have come if the US had lost the war. With US victory, World War II recedes into memory as the "Good War" where the deliberate US mass murder of German and Japanese civilians is obscured.

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