THE PASSIONS of wartime enemies fade with time. After enough years, the hatred and pain of long-ago battles fought in the jungles of a distant continent, in another decade, are no more than faint static to the more urgent call of today's alarms.
Fifteen years is long enough to bear a grudge against Vietnam. President Bush should listen to the advice of congressional leaders and lift the trade embargo against Hanoi, the first step toward eventual diplomatic recognition of our former enemy.
Fifteen years after World War II, the United States had already helped rebuild the economies of Germany and Japan -- enemies that became the closest of allies. Americans had fought grueling battles against those two nations, lost tens of thousands of lives -- and won. That was perhaps the major difference. Victors can afford to be magnanimous.