• An army officer in Vietnam told reporters, "We had to destroy the village in order to save it." Attributed to the massacre at My Lai where approximately 500 unarmed villagers were murdered by rampaging US troops in 1968. The destiny of a country was changed and it's being done again in Iraq. Destroying it in order to save it. A 5,000-year-old history and culture destroyed without a thought. It's absolutely insane but it's how the invader justifies its actions when there is no justification.
  • In the insanity of the "Vietnam War" this saying attributed to a US military officer (Major?) meant that to destroy is to build (shades of Bushism's mean the opposite of what you say) is the most simple explanation that I can think of.
  • It means people will say all manner of nonsense in order to rationalize their bad behavior...
  • When a quote makes no sense or just doesn't smell right, your critical thinking skills should kick in. Obviously, a village (in reality, the town of Ben Tre) that was destroyed was not, in any coherent sense, saved. And nobody in the American military actually voiced this absurd sentiment. The bogus quote was fabricated by Peter Arnett, whose blatantly pro-Iraqi reporting and shameless toadying to the Saddam regime cost him his job at NBC. According to the research of Mona Charen and B.G. Burkett (see Charen's book 'Useful Idiots'), army major Phil Cannella recalled telling Arnett that it was a shame that the Vietcong destroyed the town. Please understand that shining the light of truth on this pernicious myth will not deter America-hating zealots from recycling it endlessly.

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