1104 – Machiavelli and the Vietnam War

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Niccolo Machiavelli, vietnam veteran news, mack payne

Niccolo Machiavelli

Peter Lucas, vietnam veteran news, mack payne

Peter Lucas

Episode 1104 of the Vietnam Veteran News Podcast will feature a story about how something Niccolo Machiavelli wrote back in 1517 is still applicable to current events to this very day – even to the Vietnam War. Peter Lucas recently wrote a piece for The Lowell Sun of Lowell, Massachusetts titled: Breaking traditional norms of the presidency that explains how Machiavelli’s wisdom of yesteryear is still pertinent.

In 1517 the Italian political scientist wrote The Prince. It had to do with a protracted study of how to get and hold on to political power. His goal in writing the book was to describe how great men in government operated and the principles of orderly government in plain language.

Lucas chose one of Machiavelli’s arguments to show how the book still offers valuable guidance today. The principle he illustrated was Machiavelli advice for a leader that at times its “a very wise thing to simulate madness.” Lucas began his assertion by presenting the current situation with President Trump. Except for one particular news outlet all news agencies along with their confederates in the Congress have been calling the new president insane ever since he did something they all said could not be done – defeat Hillary Clinton.

As time goes by it appears more and more like Trump is playing all his critics like a fiddle by using the aforementioned Machiavelli principle. Apparently he is not the first president to use the tactic. President Nixon allegedly used it during the Vietnam War.

According to H.R. Haldeman, Nixon’s Chief of Staff, the president stated this unusual proposal to help in ending the War: “I call it the Madman Theory, Bob. I want the North Vietnamese to believe I’ve reached the point where I might do anything to stop the war. We’ll just slip the word to them that, ‘for God’s sake, you know Nixon is obsessed about communism. We can’t restrain him when he’s angry — and he has his hand on the nuclear button’ and Ho Chi Minh (the North Vietnamese leader) will be in Paris in two days begging for peace.”

Listen to the entire episode number 1104 of the podcast to get the most out of Peter Lucas’ piece explaining how modern day presidents are using Niccolo Machiavelli’s idea on how to deal with opponents.


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