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What Should Be Done In Iraq?

#21 User is offline   the saint 

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Posted 2006-April-08, 17:38

pbleighton, on Apr 8 2006, 06:59 PM, said:

"All these parasitic vipers need to be held to account and that also means that all the pussy-footed liberals need to put up and shut up because difficult questions have to be asked and answered."

Would you elaborate?

What specifically are you proposing?

Or is this a joke?

Peter

Erm yes. I get emotional sometimes. For example however we see that Mugabe has run Zimbabwe into the ground, average life expectancy over the last 20 years has dropped from 53 to just 36 and all opposition of any kind is brutally repressed. And what does the world do? NOTHING. Again, someone who should be is not held to account and (to quote myself) the 'pussy-footed liberals' would have a field day if anyone tried to.

I'm not saying that the developed world should go charging willy-nilly into everything (because that can only make things worse), but those who do have resource should try to help those who don't and not turn a blind eye to it simply because it isn't this months cause celebre.

Mugabe is just one example. There are many other people all around the world who should be brought to task in some way.
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#22 User is offline   luke warm 

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Posted 2006-April-08, 17:56

the saint, on Apr 8 2006, 06:38 PM, said:

Mugabe is just one example. There are many other people all around the world who should be brought to task in some way.

assuming that's true (and it probably is), who should do this?
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#23 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2006-April-08, 20:16

There can be nothing done in Iraq until it is clearly understood that there exists no country of Iraq - only a boundary on a map which houses various tribes of peoples, and whichever tribe is in power controls the resources within those boundaries. As long as there are tribes there will be times of peace among the tribes and times of war; the only immoratity comes in the financial support of the ruling tribe as this always leads to slaughter and attempted genocide of the non-ruling tribes. The only sensible solution is to divide the country of Iraq into as many "tribal" nations as are needed and then withdraw and let Darwinian natural selection determine the eventual winner. The only other solution is the one that Rome attempted and that is to conquer and rule - but to conquer by force and then hope for change is both dangerous and naive. The U.S.A. must either be a conqueror or a bystander - what it must not be is a policeman who imposes his sense of morality on a people who do not share that same belief.

This is all high and mighty talk but doesn't take into account the truth - the down and dirty of it all. The truth is that the Achille's heel of the U.S.A. is oil. Like a junkie deprived of heroin, the U.S.A. will come up with any lie, deception, or excuse possible to protect its supply of oil - like weapons of mass destruction in the desert, and then in the not too distant future will be the threat of fascism in Venzuela. Until such time as a viable alternative to fossil fuel exists, any oil-producing areas of the world will be under threat of an invasion by U.S. troops to "protect" the chances for democracy in that area.

Protecting the concept of democracy can be placed in the great big lie envelope along with "I'll respect you in the morning", "The check's in the mail", and "Your president is not a crook."

Winston
"Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please."
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#24 User is offline   luke warm 

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Posted 2006-April-08, 20:18

i think i agree with all of that, well said
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#25 User is offline   the saint 

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Posted 2006-April-09, 02:47

luke warm, on Apr 8 2006, 11:56 PM, said:

the saint, on Apr 8 2006, 06:38 PM, said:

Mugabe is just one example. There are many other people all around the world who should be brought to task in some way.

assuming that's true (and it probably is), who should do this?

That is the big question. What we instead see are lots of people with sloping shoulders. The African nations won't do it because of tribal reasons, lack of resources and the fact that pretty much every government in the continent is corrupt and too busy looking after its own back avoiding the next coup.

The Europeans won't because of apathy (even colonial us). The Yanks won't do it because of nothing to gain (fill in own opinion here). The Russians won't do it because they don't have cash to buy arms off them, the Chinese won't do it on the off-chance there is oil and Mugabe would be perfect for them to deal with and the rest of the world just doesn't give a ****. And of course if we wanted to do it the African nations would be up in arms about the white-man interfering in Africa again and there would be all manner of complaints from everywhere about having some agenda of some sort. Well maybe there might be - an agenda to help oppressed people.

Unfortunately this is the racism of convenience that gets trotted out all over the world in situations like this. As I have said before the Western world made a LOT of mistakes in the preceding few centuries when it was in imperialist mode. And that caused a lot of resentment which lingers today. As we have come to realise that we are in fact one global family and after the horrors of WWII in particular, those nations that were involved in that conflict came to realise that we have the power to obliterate each other and that we cannot live that way any more. We developed a social conscience. Other nations in the developing world have not developed that because events such as Hiroshima, Nagasaki and the Holocaust have never permeated their cultures in the way they have ours. While the tribal culture of vengeance fuels them, it will not be possible for them to develop this either. The dangerous thing is that as technology improves, the event that may finally show them the error of their ways will be more and more destructive.
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#26 User is offline   csdenmark 

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Posted 2006-April-09, 04:02

luke warm, on Apr 9 2006, 01:56 AM, said:

the saint, on Apr 8 2006, 06:38 PM, said:

Mugabe is just one example. There are many other people all around the world who should be brought to task in some way.

assuming that's true (and it probably is), who should do this?

Nobody of course Jimmy. The man is 80 and has damaged his country now for more than 25 years.

Jimmy please try to think of something more constructive than american armed hostility. Your way of thinking seems to reflect the american fundamentalism. Many of your written statements you may re-read and look at as examples of what anti-americanism is made of.
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#27 User is offline   the saint 

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Posted 2006-April-09, 06:17

csdenmark, on Apr 9 2006, 10:02 AM, said:

luke warm, on Apr 9 2006, 01:56 AM, said:

the saint, on Apr 8 2006, 06:38 PM, said:

Mugabe is just one example. There are many other people all around the world who should be brought to task in some way.

assuming that's true (and it probably is), who should do this?

Nobody of course Jimmy. The man is 80 and has damaged his country now for more than 25 years.

Jimmy please try to think of something more constructive than american armed hostility. Your way of thinking seems to reflect the american fundamentalism. Many of your written statements you may re-read and look at as examples of what anti-americanism is made of.

But this is also the problem. Doing nothing. Is that not as bad as doing something badly?

Europe and America have to find the middle ground. Together.
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#28 User is offline   luke warm 

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Posted 2006-April-09, 07:51

csdenmark, on Apr 9 2006, 05:02 AM, said:

luke warm, on Apr 9 2006, 01:56 AM, said:

the saint, on Apr 8 2006, 06:38 PM, said:

Mugabe is just one example. There are many other people all around the world who should be brought to task in some way.

assuming that's true (and it probably is), who should do this?

Nobody of course Jimmy. The man is 80 and has damaged his country now for more than 25 years.

Jimmy please try to think of something more constructive than american armed hostility. Your way of thinking seems to reflect the american fundamentalism. Many of your written statements you may re-read and look at as examples of what anti-americanism is made of.

maybe so, claus... but let me throw something out, for the sake of discussion.. look throughout history and tell me what generally happens when the world is apathetic.. oh i'm not necessarily talking about mugabe here, i mean in general

as far as europe and america finding middle ground together, it rarely happens... imo europe has to face threats (military or economic, it doesn't matter) before they 'see things america's way'... but when they are facing those threats, they climb aboard pretty quickly... the exception is england, who is usually a staunch ally... the reason is, i believe, they share a lot of intel with one another they aren't trusting enough to share with other nations
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#29 User is offline   pbleighton 

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Posted 2006-April-09, 21:38

"But this is also the problem. Doing nothing. Is that not as bad as doing something badly?"

This assumes that every problem has a solution. It is a typically American view, and can be great when inventing light bulbs, etc. But not every problem has a solution, and sometimes the cure is worse than the disease.

"i think there's a big difference between a preemptive conventional war and a nuclear one... this isn't the same as the cold war, where one could bank a bit on the relative sanity of the two participants... "

What do you think we should do about Iran, presuming Israel does not attack, sanctions are ineffective, and if we acted we would act alone, or mostly alone?

I think we should learn to live with it. What are your views? If you think we should take military action, of what kind? What, in your view, would be the likely short, medium, and long term consequences for the U.S., Iran, and the world?

Peter
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#30 User is offline   Impact 

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Posted 2006-April-09, 22:40

Winstonm, on Apr 8 2006, 09:16 PM, said:

There can be nothing done in Iraq until it is clearly understood that there exists no country of Iraq - only a boundary on a map which houses various tribes of peoples, and whichever tribe is in power controls the resources within those boundaries. As long as there are tribes there will be times of peace among the tribes and times of war; the only immoratity comes in the financial support of the ruling tribe as this always leads to slaughter and attempted genocide of the non-ruling tribes. The only sensible solution is to divide the country of Iraq into as many "tribal" nations as are needed and then withdraw and let Darwinian natural selection determine the eventual winner. The only other solution is the one that Rome attempted and that is to conquer and rule - but to conquer by force and then hope for change is both dangerous and naive. The U.S.A. must either be a conqueror or a bystander - what it must not be is a policeman who imposes his sense of morality on a people who do not share that same belief.

Winston sums up the "native Iraq" problem accurately - but his analysis stops short of the current position: the US (with Oz & GB) is there now.

You don't create a favourable culture and "liberal" democracy overnight even when dealing with an heterogeneous culture - much less a tribal society with intertribal hatreds in an artificially created state.

The theory of division of the state among the 3 tribes geographically ignores:-

1) its unpopularity with ALL neighbours (even US ally Turkey would oppose a Kurdish state);

2) the unequal geographic location of oil (hence wealth);

3) the inevitable dislocation of large segments of population causing further hatreds and feuds;

4) the logistics of boundary drawing which tend to be arbitrary and lead to further disputes (cf Palestine, India/Pakistan, pick any Balkan states....).

I was one of the pragmatists who believed Saddam on WMD, viewed his downfall as "a good thing" (cf 1066 & All That) but even prior to the invasion dared to voice the query as to what the plan was for "the peace" on the basis that occupation would have to take place for a minimum of 2 decades to educate and inculcate a generation if there was to be any prospect of establishing a sympathetic (or empathetic) western-oriented state. I doubted whether the US possessed the intestinal fortitude to stay the course over such a period as historically dramatic throwing of resources at a problem in the short term has yielded US its best results.

To my knowledge the only longterm "occupations" by the US have been Vietnam (not exactly a success), Germany (dealing with a western heterogeneous group) and Japan (which was at least heterogeneous).

Since WWII US foreign policy has been about maintaining a bulwark against communism - and since 1990 about effectively maintaining a status quo (as the dominant power is wont to prefer).

Once rhetoric is excluded that simple doctrine explains virtually all actions - and alleged volte faces for the past 60 years. It doesn't make those actions right - but it does explain them.

That is not to say that no dividends have been received by the occupation: a number of arab states have foresworn WMD and direct open funding of terrorists and a number of others have had to come to grips with the risk that there might be another state in which "the people" actually have a say - thereby instilling some doubts about the totalitarian regimes in other states.

Certainly, there is a strong argument that such dividends are insufficient for the cost (in lives and financially), but there is a further real issue now: what of the cost incurred to date if the US exits now. Those "costs" are effectively wasted in such a scenario.

As noted, the longterm strategy of staying the course in Iraq could be a winner geopolitically - but is all but unsustainable on a domestic political basis from an outsider's perspective.

Again, to steal from Clausewitz, America's foreign policy has really been a continuation of its domestic policy by other means.

I may not like a world superpower - but if we have to have one I am generally grateful that it is the US (consider the alternatives if say Russia, China or even colonial GB exercised the same dominance) as it is doubtful that in those circumstances criticism would be tolerated - and almost certainly there would be no self-vilification or introspection by such a nation.

It is quite touching - if somewhat naive- that the US still tends to believe that anywhere they go they will be loved - and the continued air of surprised disappointment when they are not. Other nations have tended to be considerably less caring.....
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#31 User is offline   mike777 

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Posted 2006-April-09, 22:50

All this talk of Oil is old school and fighting the last war not the next one.

Wake up.....or look silly fighting old issues and old wars....like old men.....and lose!

Yes Energy is very important but all this talk of oil is for old men fighting the old wars over again....think forward!
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#32 User is offline   luke warm 

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Posted 2006-April-10, 03:28

pbleighton, on Apr 9 2006, 10:38 PM, said:

What do you think we should do about Iran, presuming Israel does not attack, sanctions are ineffective, and if we acted we would act alone, or mostly alone?

I think we should learn to live with it. What are your views? If you think we should take military action, of what kind? What, in your view, would be the likely short, medium, and long term consequences for the U.S., Iran, and the world?

at the risk of offending someone, i'll just repeat what i said above - during the period of MAD, there were two relatively sane countries involved... i don't view iran (or even some who now have the bomb) in the same light

as for what to do, i honestly believe israel will not allow iran to go nuclear unless duct taped to a chair by the usa... if not them, i think the un should prevent a nuclear iran... if they are unwilling or unable, i think the usa should

that's my opinion
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#33 User is offline   csdenmark 

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Posted 2006-April-10, 03:44

luke warm, on Apr 10 2006, 11:28 AM, said:

pbleighton, on Apr 9 2006, 10:38 PM, said:

What do you think we should do about Iran, presuming Israel does not attack, sanctions are ineffective, and if we acted we would act alone, or mostly alone?

I think we should learn to live with it.  What are your views?  If you think we should take military action, of what kind?  What, in your view, would be the likely short, medium, and long term consequences for the U.S., Iran, and the world?

at the risk of offending someone, i'll just repeat what i said above - during the period of MAD, there were two relatively sane countries involved... i don't view iran (or even some who now have the bomb) in the same light

as for what to do, i honestly believe israel will not allow iran to go nuclear unless duct taped to a chair by the usa... if not them, i think the un should prevent a nuclear iran... if they are unwilling or unable, i think the usa should

that's my opinion

i honestly believe israel will not allow iran to go nuclear
You are misinterpretating Israel Jimmy. The will of the Israeli people is peace with their neighbours - and nothing else. They know quite well without the protection coming from USA their state would be unable to survive.

They are not willing to risk a peace option for odd adventures from lunatics. Please remember Israel no longer have the same number and sorts of immigrants coming from east. Those were persons with no knowledge of democratic values.

Today and in future Israel will need to rely on persons raised in Israel creating an Israeli identity. The religious fundamentalism is likely to reduce in future. Thats why Sharon turned his positions to settlements.
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#34 User is offline   keylime 

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Posted 2006-April-10, 06:12

I guarantee Israel with or without an invite will ensure their security. Quite frankly, the Holocaust, whether or not people deny that it ever happened, still looms and to the every last man and woman they will defend their land...and be successful at it.
"Champions aren't made in gyms, champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have last-minute stamina, they have to be a little faster, they have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill. " - M. Ali
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#35 User is offline   pbleighton 

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Posted 2006-April-10, 09:02

"if they are unwilling or unable, i think the usa should"

How?

Peter
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#36 User is offline   luke warm 

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Posted 2006-April-10, 17:30

csdenmark, on Apr 10 2006, 04:44 AM, said:

i honestly believe israel will not allow iran to go nuclear
You are misinterpretating Israel Jimmy. The will of the Israeli people is peace with their neighbours - and nothing else. They know quite well without the protection coming from USA their state would be unable to survive.

time will tell, claus, but if history is any guide israel won't sit by benignly while an avowed enemy, one who states publically that they desire no less than the complete destruction of israel, develops the means by which that goal is realized... you'll be able to tell by the immediate future as it pertains to israel and hamas

peter said:

How?

by any means necessary...
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