McNamara's Folly: The Use Of Low-IQ Troops In The Vietnam War

Submitted by: LordJim 1 month ago in News & Politics


A presentation and reading by Hamilton Gregory, author of "McNamara's Folly: The Use of Low-IQ Troops in the Vietnam." Because so many college students were avoiding military service during the Vietnam War, Defense Secretary Robert McNamara lowered mental standards to induct 354,000 low-IQ men. Their death toll in combat was appalling.
There are 26 comments:
Male 1,081
Jordan Peterson - The Most Terrifying IQ Statistic:
https://youtu.be/5-Ur71ZnNVk
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Male 2,755
Unfortunately my personal experience with that war does not led me to this conclusion.
 Being a couple years to young to be drafted, I did know personally many that were and were sent to Vietnam too and they were not stupid, or low IQ. So by this story of one man supposedly having a low IQ, how many men that were drafted were low IQ? At its hight there were something like 549,500 men in Vietnam at its peak deployment in 1968.
  1.1 million North Vietnamese and Viet Cong fighters. The U.S. military has estimated that between 200,000 and 250,000 South Vietnamese soldiers died in the war.
And everyone knows how many americans died. 59,000 in a war that lasted from not counting the years we were not officially involved, 1962 to 1972 (?) These are not appalling losses certainly not on the American side. And to say that these men were not capable at all and died wholesale is wrong. For them to have died an appalling number they would almost have to be the total number of dead and we know that's not true. Remember 2,709,918 served from 1964 to 1973.
  Also a little know fact about war that for every man in the field in Vietnam there were 6 in the back doing supply and all the things it takes to keep men in the field. Despite what you many think and what you have been told most were not in combat.  So even if all these men were taken in, most would not be in combat, it would not make sense to put an idiot in combat to get other soldiers killed. Remember they would have been spreed over years and millions of men.
  https://www.britannica.com/event/Vietnam-War
  Despite your opinions of the war this does not sound like reality to me.
  There is no doubt that men of low IQ served, but to say that somehow it was the norm is so disingenuous to those that did served, you don't kill 1.1 million people with low IQ men.
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Male 1,864
casaledana Yup! Facts matter. It's long been "fair game" to attack the actual soldiers who fought in Vietnam as sub-humans or animals, this is just another version of that.
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Male 2,755
gohikineko   Your right and today's soldiers just by the technology they have to use cant be stupid.
  In fact studies have shown that the average soldier today is above average intelligence.
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Male 1,873
Quotas never help.

"politically unpopular" to draft the able.

Either you're in it to win or you aren't.

If you can't convince the public to support the effort politically, then get out of the arena.

OR

Do what you feel is right, and worry about the political ramifications later.
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Male 1,575
Anyone else  think of Forrest Gump?
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Male 9,498
doiknowyou Watch 32:52 to 35:00.
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Male 18,342
doiknowyou my very first reaction was to think of a box of chocolates
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Male 190
This is absolutely heartbreaking. 
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6,907
Cannon fodder is very important.
Not to mention the benefits for social engineering.
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Male 7,280
Those Low IQ troops would have performed just fine, if they were allowed to do what was actually needed to win that war..

That probably would have meant full scale invasions of Laos and Cambodia tho.
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Male 9,498
daegog I don't know about that. Did you listen to this man describe how most of these draftees with IQs in the 50s were unable to fire a gun at targets or throw a grenade? Sending people who are that mentally handicapped into combat is little short of murder.
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Male 2,185
squrlz4ever "Sending people who are that mentally handicapped into combat is little short of murder."

“The enemy is anybody who's going to get you killed, no matter which side he is on.” 
―  Joseph Heller, Catch-22
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Male 9,498
semichisam01 Love that book. It's probably time for a re-read. Thanks for the quote, Semi. Really nice.
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Male 2,185
squrlz4ever Heller complained that the public never understood "Catch-22". "They think it's fiction."
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Male 9,498
semichisam01 LOL! Great quote. I'd never heard that one before. You know, the only novel of Heller's I've read was Catch-22. I'm vaguely familiar with his others (Sometimes a Great Notion comes to mind), but I think of him as essentially a one-book writer.

The subject was WW2, but his absurdist humor obviously struck a chord with what everyone was observing with the Vietnam War and its body counts and observations that "We had to destroy the village to save it." I have heard that a lot of GIs in Vietnam were carrying around dog-eared copies of the novel as a way to make sense of what they were experiencing. (Recounting this now more for my benefit than yours; sounds like you are more familiar with the book than I am.)
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Male 1,864
daegog Indeed. It seemed most of the time that the Pentagon was trying to NOT win the war, but to drag it on for year after year... :-/
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Male 9,627
gohikineko Well  you did know that Nixon kept the war going for political purposes right?
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Male 1,864
normalfreak2 Um, Nixon ended the war dude. Or does your "revised history" claim Carter did that? O_o
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Male 9,627


Also listen to the Archives.  It appears Nixon in fact kept the War going to make sure he won
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Male 1,864
normalfreak2 He got re-elected, yes. Then he ended the war, yes or no? I never said he was a saint who ended the war the day he took office, did I? Nope I did not. IN FACT I didn't even discuss any Presidents, Dem or Rep, I talked about the Pentagon.

So what is it with you? you simply have to say bad things about Republicans in every comment or you get the heebie-geebies of withdrawal symptoms? That's a nasty habit you have there...

Because we all know the Democrats were utterly blameless for the Vietnam war! ONLY ONE SIDE (says you) should bear the responsibility!

Here I am being nice and non-controversial and you bring hate-mongering into it? Conspiracy theories and such stuff? All one-sided of course... sheesh.
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Male 9,627
gohikineko Sorry i wasn't bringing hate, I was  merely pointing out more Nuance.  I'm not stating you were wrong in your assertions about the Pentagon's influence as well.  I wasn't blaming one side or another, I was showing you evidence of ONE person's involvement, he just happened to be a Republican that really doesn't matter nor was that my focus.
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Male 1,864
normalfreak2 Well, I kept it politically neutral on purpose, because if there ever was an event in American history where both sides are equally to blame? It was the Vietnam war. It did serve a purpose in the 'grand picture' but the way it was carried out by both parties was... questionable (at best).

By that logic ALL politicians running for the high offices were "in on it" and party was irrelevant. They all prolonged the war for political purposes.  And yes, I think they were indeed all in on it, including Nixon, the money bought them fair and square. :x
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Male 18,342
gohikineko it was a succession of presidents that cared more about power than peace.
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Male 1,864
Draculya Yes, actually, that's included with what I said, since the Pentagon was under the command of whichever President was in power at the time, eh?
But each President would be advised by various intelligence agencies, including the Pentagon, so there's the root of the problem.
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Male 274
daegog and public acceptance that it would be a multi-generation commitment
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