Martin Hellman wonders why Tonkin Gulf incidents seem forgotten


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The USS Maddox was allegedly torpedoed by the Vietnamese in the Gulf of Tonkin on Aug. 2, 1964, giving the U.S. legal basis for the Vietnam War.
Photo credit: 
U.S. Navy Archives

The first Tonkin Gulf incident occurred exactly 50 years ago this week, giving the United States government the legal basis for the Vietnam War. But as CISAC Affiliated Faculty Member $people1% notes in this Huffington Post commentary, there has been little coverage of the anniversary in the media.

"Given that the war cost 58,000 American lives and somewhere between 1,000,000 and 3,000,000 Vietnamese, and each of its major rationales was later shown to be false, the nation's lack of memory is stunning, and dangerous," Hellman writes.