I was shocked to learn General Giap had not died years ago. The one thing our enemies understood in Vietnam–and Iraq–was that the real battlefield, at least with the US, was tepid American public opinion and the perception of an unwinnable war. Our media were complicit, but so too were the fact that whatever happened in Vietnam would always be more important to the Vietnamese than to us. The same is true in Iraq and Afghanistan. The war had its high and low points, of course, but the biggest failings were the misuse of conventional firepower, the failure to create a credible and just alternative in the form of the Vietnamese government, and, having learned these failures, our failure to support the South Vietnamese from 1972-1975 after those lessons had been learned and internalized.