Part of John Kerry’s campaign mantra has been the characterizing of America’s Iraqi policy as “the wrong war, at the wrong time, in the wrong place.” It’s a hot-button line that actually harkens back to another war, the Korean, and another adversary, China.
The source can be found in Niall Ferguson’s “Colossus: The Price of America’s Empire.” The quote comes from Gen. Omar Bradley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in the aftermath of the sacking of Gen. Douglas MacArthur. In 1951 Bradley testified at a hearing held jointly by the Senate’s Foreign Relations and Armed Services committees.
“Bradley argued that an all-out war against China would have left Western Europe at the mercy of the Soviets,” writes Ferguson. “It would have been ‘the wrong war at the wrong place at the wrong time and with the wrong enemy.'”