WHEN I was a teenager I can remember sitting watching the news with my parents. It was the late Sixties and almost every bulletin seemed to have a report from the war in Vietnam.
I could have stepped back forty years in time last night when I saw the report about the British and American offensive in Afghanistan. Same strategy as used in Vietnam - flying out to a village, dropping troops to secure it, then leaving a token force to hold it against the Viet Cong.
I have read a few hundred books on the Vietnam war and at one time had a collection of over 3,000 books which I bought and sold via my website Booksonvietnam.
In all the recollections and history books on the war the message was the same - the war couldn't be won. The French couldn't win in Vietnam before the Americans tried and the Chinese couldn't win after the Americans.
Afghanistan is the same. The war can't be won so every British serviceman or women who loses their life there has done so for nothing. It make me want to cry when I think of the grief felt by those families, and then it makes me angry that Blair and Brown have squandered British lives in this way.
Well done to Peter North for his 211 votes in last night's local council by-election in Sutton. He polled more than twice as many votes as the Labour Party's candidate.
The full result was:
Thursday 2nd July 2009
Gerry Jerome (Lib-Dem) 1665
Chris Dunlop (Con) 1329.
Peter North (BNP) 211
Marcus Papadopoulos (Lab) 88
BNP Percentage: 6.4%
If you fancy a weekend campaigning in Norwich in this lovely weather, then let me introduce you to Julia Howman and her team (above) who will no doubt be delighted by any offers of help.
And as it's Friday what about a Kinks' classic. This is a shortened version of Shangri-la for a BBC programme on Ray Davies from about 15 years ago. This was one I my Kinks favourites but sadly it wasn't a hit at the time because it was probably too melancholy.