On this day in United States history in 1964….
The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution is passed by Congress.
This resolution basically gave the President (Lyndon Johnson) the power to use military force without a declaration of war.
It was unanimously approved by the House of Representatives and was approved by the Senate with only 2 Senators opposing it: Senator Morse, a Democrat from Oregon and Senator Gruening, a Democrat from Arkansas.
Personally, my thoughts on the whole thing are easily reflected in a quote by Senator Gruening:
“sending our American boys into combat in a war in which we have no business, which is not our war, into which we have been misguidedly drawn, which is steadily being escalated.”
This war got really out of control. We lost almost 60,000 of our troops in that “police action.” We spent over $111 billion.
Again I say, totally out of control. And we can thank this Gulf of Tonkin resolution that Congress passed.
All that being said. I am not one of those people that would have been spitting on the soldiers or calling them baby killers as they came home from the war. I completely support our troops. It’s not their fault that our elected officials sent them off to fight someone else’s war. As Senator Gruening said, it was not our business.
Okay, I’ve harped on that one enough.