History doesn't just repeat, it also rhymes.
Thus, it's purely poetic that Joe Biden had just been elected to his first of too many terms as a U.S. senator when Saigon fell 46 years ago. Just as he had been elected to his first of too many terms as president of these United States, when the country suffered its most embarrassing foreign policy defeat in Afghanistan since Saigon in Vietnam.
The rice paddy delta may not have much in common with the Bedouin poppy fields, and the Satanic verses memorized by the likes of the Taliban are much older than the demonic ravings of Marx that devilishly inspired Ho Chi Minh. Yet despite the circumstantial differences of these two events, and the time elapsed between them, their failures are strikingly similar.
And that's because the same counterculture with the same terrible ideas was responsible for both of them.
Vietnam was the big bang — quite literally if you're old enough to remember what "free love" really meant — of the counterculture. The cataclysmic event that gave birth to a new form of existence. One that felt it could exist without acknowledging any of the fundamentals of existence previous generations had to learn the hard way.
If America was founded by a generation that looked to the past to find answers for their present challenges and were inspired by centuries of Western and biblical thought to rediscover "self-evident truth" as a pathway to liberty, it sadly may be tossed on the ash heap of history by a counterculture generation that believes it can "your truth" its way to an earthly utopia. Which, of course, only proves the counterculture had ignored history at its own peril. For every attempt at utopia ends in some form of tyranny.
Eventually the utopians have to confront the truth about human nature, as the Rolling Stones discovered 50 years ago at Altamonte. Where they attempted a free concert with Hell's Angels providing security (metaphor alert!) that ended in murder and mayhem, while a wimpy and effeminate Mick Jagger ridiculously strutted on stage begging everyone to stop fighting and just love each other.
If the Greatest Generation had a singular failure, it was failing to pass on why it rode the boats to Normandy and island hopped the Pacific to their progeny. After battling through a Great Depression and World War II, they were rightfully anxious to return to normalcy and enjoy the fruits of Americana once again. Unfortunately, their children, the Baby Boomers, were given an inordinate amount of comfort and wealth as a result. None of which they had to sacrifice for. To put it another way, the Greatest Generation raised too many spoiled brats.
Thus, when life is easy, it only makes sense you think the cost of that life is easy, too. That we can make love, not war, on our own as a species if we just try harder. I mean, why hadn't any of the previous seven thousand years of recorded human history thought of that? Maybe, man, if Atilla the Hun had hashish or colored construction paper on the tip of his tongue, he could turn on, tune in, and drop out and he wouldn't have done all that conquest stuff? That we can smile on our brother without any divine prompting, and everybody can just get together and try to love one another right now if the right album is on. What's the point of dying at the hands of the Viet Cong, when I can kill a few brain cells and morsels of my soul here at home just fine?
Throw in a bloated military-industrial complex that mastered the art of mission creep, and the justification for flower power as a replacement for American Exceptionalism as a powerful hedge against global oppression was born.
We have never recovered as a civilization.
The counterculture was the tipping point of American Exceptionalism. There was American Exceptionalism prior, and what has become of it ever since. Yes, there have been brief periods when traditional Americana has risen up to try and restore some sanity. But for all his success toppling what was left of the Soviet Union's papier-mache evil empire and restoring American confidence, Ronald Reagan also left office with the term "deficit spending" now a default setting. The Contract with America was the last time the Congress has worked on behalf of traditional America's interests regardless of who holds the majority, and that was a quarter-century ago. Donald Trump did almost everything he could via executive power, but failed to drain the swamp in his own executive branch and was overwhelmed by COVID hysteria.
And that's been it.
Ever since Richard Nixon historically trounced George McGovern, the counterculture's first attempt at political ascendancy, the worldview that propelled McGovern's run has been on a winning run ever since. And while our consultants and think tanks carefully crafted the conservative case for open borders and government mandates at the behest of ambitious corporatist Republicans and the corporations that control them, the counterculture was completing the long march through the institutions.
We offered tax cuts, they offered existential purpose and meaning. Granted, it was from below and not above, but the God-shaped hole in all of our hearts will be filled by something bad rather than nothing at all. You aren't going to beat political correctness with political grift. Nor does Forever War stand a chance against White Fragility. Cancel Culture will prevail against no cultural heritage whatsoever. We are going to be inspired by something, it's just a matter of whether it's good or bad.
Which brings us to Afghanistan, which was always doomed to fail.
For years now people like me have asked over and over again, what is the mission there? What does victory look like? We were told it was "to fight the terrorists there so we don't have to fight them here."
Except with our open borders and attempts to erase our heritage at the societal level and calling it "college" we are fighting them here. Being in Afghanistan didn't save us from fighting Islamo-fascism here whatsoever. Since we invaded Afghanistan in 2001, there have been at least 30 attempted or successful terrorist attacks on U.S. soil from those driven by Islamic radicalism.
We thought our way of life was a plug-and-play system. We had abandoned things like God-given rights (which means we first have to acknowledge who actually is God) that were our cornerstones and replaced them with democracy as mere process. A process that we could just export, fill in the blanks with native tongue, and the natives would then take it from there. The Judeo-Christian theologies have long wrestled with the extents of free will.
Meanwhile, Islam is unsure of whether free will exists at all. So how were we going to give freedom to a culture that is unsure it has any free will? Unfortunately, asking such questions requires us to critically assess the advantages and disadvantages of different beliefs and customs, and that's icky according to our elites so we passed.
Therefore, we blindly continued on with what George W. Bush said at his second inauguration, "The call of freedom comes to every mind and every soul."
Except, if that were true, how do we explain the last seven thousand years of recorded human history that is simply an ebb and flow of empires, and different strands of humanity attempting to impose their will on others? If that were true, why is this still fledgling country, that hasn't even reached its 300th birthday, the longest successful attempt at human freedom this fallen world has ever seen?
See, we no longer believe in such things as a "fallen world." We've evolved beyond that. We're more enlightened than that. We know better than that.
Just like we knew better than that when we created a welfare state. Just like we knew better than that when we decided the nuclear family wasn't worth preserving. Just like we knew better than that when we determined our Constitution is a "living, breathing document."
Just as a generation of young men decided fighting STDs during "free love" was their personal Vietnam at the time, the young men of Afghanistan couldn't bring themselves to fight either. At least the counterculture didn't have the Viet Cong literally at their house, so they were permitted some level of delusion. The Taliban was going to door-to-door in Kabul as these young men fled, presumably many with wives and children left behind, in a vain attempt to get onboard the last remaining American aircraft evacuating the city.
They didn't stand and fight. We gave them a 20-year head start in training and several trillions of dollars. But when the bullets started flying they fled, just as the trillions we invested in the welfare state trained a generation of men to abandon their women and children, too. We willfully nuked our families domestically and called it progress, so we shouldn't be surprised we couldn't adequately inspire a foreign culture to defend theirs. Seeing troves of young Afghani men of fighting age trample each other, while trying to reach that final suckling spot on the American nipple, is the climactic scene of two-decades of failure theater.
And all the while, a dementia-riddled president known for calling a lid on his day shortly after second breakfast, couldn't be found. Whoever is actually running the administration Biden is a front for couldn't be found, either. Too much military to wokify, to teach to be as nonbinary as you can be, I suppose. Too many Americans not wearing useless Chinese face diapers, or unvaccinated with injections losing transmission efficacy in real-time as we speak, which is how we really identify who's a potential terrorist these days. And we didn't have time to stop those Black Hawk helicopters from falling into the Taliban's hands on the way out, because we had to make sure we got all the rainbow flags.
Rest assured, we were destined to fail in Afghanistan long before Uncle Joe "obtained" the presidency. We had already failed years before we knew what a Cackling Kamala was. Because in the end it doesn't matter how educated you are, how many credentialed letters appear after your last name, nor how much money and military you have acquired.
If you fail to recognize the realities of human nature and this fallen world in which we live, you are doomed to fail. It's just a matter of when. Sooner or later when you break the laws of Nature and Nature's God enough, they end up breaking you.