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Professor Kaiser is proposing what would seem to me to be an impossibly high burden on statesmen. The United States (or any major power) will inevitably make any war " more destructive " if not longer, by joining battle. The same could easily be said for American participation in WWII. As for changing the outcome, how would statesmen surmise that before the fact? In the case of Vietnam, policy makers, to the extent that they may have thought about it at all, had the obvious historical examples or personal experience of the Korean War, the British in Malaysia, the Greek Civil War, the Huk rebellion and so on. What alarm bells should have rung to make the United States walk away from South Vietnam after, say, the Geneva conference ? Or Diem's consolidation of power ? Mark Safranski Independent Scholar >From: "Kaiser, David, Prof." <firstname.lastname@example.org> > > I believe that one million estimate is a common one. I can't help >noting, however, that Dr. Zimmerman made the same mistake I referred to, >that is, automatically assuming that I meant Americans had killed one >million civilians. I didn't say that. I am saying that they died because >the United States decided to fight that war, and thereby made it much, >much longer, and much, more destructive, than it otherwise would have been, without changing the outcome.