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Is the past a lesson for the future?

 
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Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/1/2004 2:25:58 AM   
SeaMonkey

 

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Okay, do we use history to help solve the problems of the future/present? As I remember reading about the fall of Berlin in WW2, it took a quarter of million Russian casualties to root out the diehard Nazi vermin. Well.....what if we cordon off Fallujah, give the good folks 72 hours to vacate the premises, checking them all as they come out. Then........what? House to house, or just raze the place of living organisms with MOABs? Are we too civil? Is this a war or not? How long are we going to ****-foot around these animals?
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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/1/2004 4:14:11 AM   
Les_the_Sarge_9_1

 

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The future proves this to me.

We don't want the country run by the army. But we don't necessarily want civilians who can't recall the past, being able to just send people to war, when those people in control know nothing of our past examples of sheer stupidity

I have no interest in politics, and I have a very solid grasp of a great deal of our race's (humantity eh, not some ethnic variation on that term) past conflicts.

What I can't understand, is how so many elected leaders, can so consistently prove they have no idea what they are doing yet again and again and again.

Maybe a requirement of political office, should be past service in the military (real service too eh).
Maybe a requirement of political office should be a real degree in human history (not some damnable honourary degree either).

Maybe there would be fewer wars to become expert on, if our politicians, that supposedly speak for the people, were less anxious to send those same people, into yet another conflict they should have seen coming and known to avoid.

Most of the wars I have studied, appear to have started as a result of blind faith, or complete ignorance.

There will always be humans that wish to create harm. And they will continue to create harm. Until we develope as a species, and learn to force those in elected power, to be masters of dealing with the occasional crazy warmonger among us.

And it can't just be one nation that does all the work. We as a planet need to finally accept, that humanity has to cut the bull, and finally grow up as a species.

Or sooner or later, we will be writing more sad sorry history about yet another sad sorry event, that looks remarkably like so many other events from the past, enigmatically repeated, because no one that was in charge remembered.

< Message edited by Les_the_Sarge_9_1 -- 3/31/2004 9:15:49 PM >


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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/1/2004 5:13:36 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

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Understand the philosophy Les, but I was hoping for a more tactical perspective. We're there and we're obviously not leaving anytime soon. Tactical=practical, some ideas to save our countrymen's lifes, now!

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/1/2004 8:39:09 PM   
Les_the_Sarge_9_1

 

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Hmm, well on the tactical level.

And understand this is me entering a topic I might find only gets ugly, and thus I will merely abandon it (the topic).

I see the US in Iraq, fighting a war with maybe the wrong assets.

The cost to maintain a tank in Iraq, has got to be fairly hefty. I wonder how many MPs could be fielded for the same price?

Terrorists, and that is what I think is the current enemy in Iraq, to accomplishing some peace and order right now, would likely be best fought by well organised MPs units.

And keep in mind, I don't care if the US should or should not have gone. To late to cry over it, then went, they kicked out Saddam, its done.

Now they need to restore the country to some manner of stability.

I am not sure a bunch of tanks is the right way.

Yeah I know, would rather be in a tank when being shot at by goons with guns.

But I would also like to have the local support of a full contingent of MPs just as well.

I am assuming a lot of MPs would make it hard to get away with the things that are being done currently.

So on a tactical level, I think it is time to stop employing combat troops ie tanks armour personell vehicles and such. Time to insert men trained to keep the peace and ensure the peace. Time to make the Iraqis trying to do the same, feel better supported by men that are essentially the same sort of person, police.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/1/2004 11:57:33 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

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It seems more boots on the ground with good intelligence support would be constructive. Thing is I would like to make sure there are more prosecutors of the law than the lawless, that maybe difficult but manageable on the tactical scale. Fallujah could provide a testing ground as there are many identifiable perpetrators from the visuals I've seen. There maybe no easy way, surgically thinking, to separate the innocent from the criminals if the population should erupt into frenzied behavior, much the same as some of our urban riots. Me thinks a few more prisons need to be built.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 12:34:05 AM   
blam0

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Les_the_Sarge_9_1

So on a tactical level, I think it is time to stop employing combat troops ie tanks armour personell vehicles and such. Time to insert men trained to keep the peace and ensure the peace. Time to make the Iraqis trying to do the same, feel better supported by men that are essentially the same sort of person, police.



I think the problem with the MP solution is there are simply not enough MPs. Without getting into who cut what budget, our Armed Forces simply don't have the proper levels of manpower to deal with policing a whole country.

That notwithstanding, I'd say that Saddam had plenty of prison space so there should be no need for us to build more. The (other) biggest issue that we face right now in Iraq is one of PR. If we start "cracking down" exuberantly, we will risk being seen as even more as oppressive infidels. The (misguided) goal in Iraq is supposed to be to build a democracy. If we are seen as "opressive" in the process, then we will not only have a difficult time building a consensus government, but we will also fan the fires of hate that the extremist groups feed on.

I think the best solution is for the Iraqi police force (such as it is) and the Iraq Criminal Justice system to handle the problem. I'm not confident in their abilities (and I am just speculating), but I think it's the best of a bad situation.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 2:24:18 AM   
Les_the_Sarge_9_1

 

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Hmm well lets see, bring the tanks home, then offer decent pay increases for MPs with the money not wasted using tanks, and I think you would have a good dose of interest in MP work.

Its not like they can't end up with a lot more MPs, someone in charge merely has to be bright enough to think of it.

Oh wait, that won't work now will it :) I would have to actually find someone in charge that was bright now wouldn't I? :)

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 2:44:19 AM   
blam0

 

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What I meant was the the number of MPs required to police Iraq do not exist in our current force structure. Additionally, many MPs are Reservists (not the other way around). The fundamental problem therefore is that the US armed forces are not structured for this type of action.

Raising the number of MPs in the ranks takes time. Training does not happen overnight. Besides, an Abrams is going to cost "x" number of dollars regardless of where it is (Iraq or the US). I'm sure that there is additional cost for maintaining it in the field, but I really doubt that the incremental can justify a full division of MPs (my WAG at what it would take to police most of the country).

Don't forget that the administration has set a June 30 pull out date for our troops (who knows if that will actually happen). I really doubt that we can put a significant number of additional MPs on the ground before that date, even if we adopt your plan immediately.

Honestly, I don't see how the US can get out of this (Iraq) cleanly. Viet Nam springs to mind, not because of the "will to win" issue which is commonly cited as the reason we lost, but because we did not understand (or chose to ignore) the culture of the region we were getting into.

There's got to be a reason that there are no democratic Middle Eastern governments...

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 6:13:26 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

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Well it seems we have all come to the same conclusion and hence no positive action and so people(Americans) will continue to be killed. I was hoping for a more expeditious tactical plan to stop or reduce this killing in the reality of the Iraqi environment. The time to worry about our "worldly" image has passed IMO. Looking at past military occupations and patterns consistent with the Middle Eastern violence, leniency or complacency may also further the exuberance for continued violence. Is fanaticism responsive to humanitarian therapy?

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 6:56:57 PM   
Les_the_Sarge_9_1

 

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Western thought and beliefs combine with the Middle East no better than oil and water.

In the end, the only solution is to accept no amount of mixing is going to change that.

Maybe we would have less "immigrants" causing undue hassle INSIDE Canada and the US, if part of the requirement of coming to Canada and the US, was a decisive agreement, that participation in any activity supporting actions in their point of origin, was grounds for immediate dpeprtation back to the point of origin.

A lot of the reason we have governments forced to care about the Middle East etc etc etc is we have lots of people happy to come here, but not happy enough to accept when they came here, it was to "get away" from where they came from.

I sympathise with a lot of the world's "problems", but frankly, a lot of the reason any one has to care, is the loud "minorities" with the noise level of a "majority" insisting we have to "do something" about every other nation on the planet.

Wouldn't it be nice if Canada and the US were only responsible for Canada and the US.

We don't get squat for any of our troubles from anyone else eh. Why should we have to always fix everyone else's country.

If Baghdad had become a "real" problem. I would be happy to let George flatten every square inch of it in a single b52 raid using non nuclear methods.
It would not have mattered where Saddam was currently hiding.

The only REAL solution to external problems, if they are indeed a real problem as defined by those in charge, is to "remove" the problem.

I would like to see a suicide bomber make it across the Atlantic, if they had to come to us to kill us eh.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 8:54:25 PM   
blam0

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: SeaMonkey

... I was hoping for a more expeditious tactical plan to stop or reduce this killing in the reality of the Iraqi environment. The time to worry about our "worldly" image has passed IMO. Looking at past military occupations and patterns consistent with the Middle Eastern violence, leniency or complacency may also further the exuberance for continued violence.



We would all like a better solution, but I think that's the nature of the problem, really. There is no "easy" solution, or tactical solution to make this type of problem go away.

The image that I worry about is our image within the Middle East. What I mean by that is, we need to be careful to not do anything to further alienate the people there. After all, they are the prime recruiting grounds for AQ, and other Islamic hate groups. If you can avoid doing something to give the hate groups recruiting material, then I think it should be avoided.

To your last point suggesting that leniency will exacerbate the cycle of violence where force will not, I would suggest you re-examine your history. While leniency will certainly exacerbate it, meeting force with force has simply not proven to work except when dealing with state sponsored terrorism (note, Libya, Iran, and Iraq post 1993 -- and yes that means that this war had nothing to do with the WOT).

..but of course the WOT is another subject and I don't want to hijack your thread...

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 10:33:18 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

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I'm thinking summer is coming soon in Iraq, from what I hear it gets pretty hot and dry there. I wonder how the citizens of Fallujah are aclimatized to creature comforts? Probably wouldn't bother them a bit without power for a few hours? Delayed food shipments do happen and sometimes water gets scarce(pumps break). Might dissipate some of that excess belligerent energy they have.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/2/2004 11:25:57 PM   
blam0

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: SeaMonkey

I'm thinking summer is coming soon in Iraq, from what I hear it gets pretty hot and dry there. I wonder how the citizens of Fallujah are aclimatized to creature comforts? Probably wouldn't bother them a bit without power for a few hours? Delayed food shipments do happen and sometimes water gets scarce(pumps break). Might dissipate some of that excess belligerent energy they have.



Acutally, I think your point is interesting, but I would take it the other way. Call it what you will, but if the citizens of Iraq are so inundated in creature comforts like A/C, well there would not be much motivation to go out into the sweltering heat and fight.

I'd love to be able to think of a scenario where this worked in the past, but I can't. It's a given that this is the "long term" goal, but seriously...who really believes that Iraq will be a productive democracy 3 years from now?

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/3/2004 12:03:19 AM   
SeaMonkey

 

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Well blamO I'm thinking how long did it take for Germans and Japanese to become contributers and they weren't sitting on a billion barrels of crude oil not to mention the extent of destruction to their infrastructure. Unfortunately conditioning the Iraqis to the comforts of capitalism will take to long = human life lost, remember I'm looking for a quick tactical fix.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/3/2004 12:10:33 AM   
blam0

 

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Good point.

I guess I just feel that there is no quick tactical fix aside from Americans travelling in large, heavily armed convoys.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/3/2004 1:17:43 AM   
SeaMonkey

 

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That didn't work either. Don't you remember "Rat Patrol".

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/6/2004 7:40:14 AM   
Marines


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First of all, this talk about putting more MPs on the streets and pulling some of the armored vehicles out is a bunch of bull****. I served in Iraq with the 1st Battalion 10th Marines thats an artillery unit. Unlike the Army everyone in the Marine Corps is a rifleman first from the cooks to the air wingers. After we finished blowing the crap out of them from 15 miles to 400 feet from us we stopped and waited for 2 days. The Marines have whats called a PRC which is a Provisional Rifle Company made up of artillery, admin, supply etc. and use these units as a peacekeeping force in cities, towns and so on which I did as well. They are now sending units from the 1st and 2nd Marine Divisions to Iraq which are not even in a combat arms MOS. Maybe the Army who is 3 times larger than the Marines should adopt the same idea of a PRC and train thier cooks, motor t... what ever to help out and alleviate some of the burdon and streched ranks of the Army.

"Well I actually voted for it before I didn't vote for it."

John Kerry on his no vote for increased funding for troops in Iraq to include body armor.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/7/2004 11:04:47 PM   
ravinhood


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quote:

And it can't just be one nation that does all the work. We as a planet need to finally accept, that humanity has to cut the bull, and finally grow up as a species


The problem with this though is that other species of ourselves haven't even gone through half the increase in knowledge and technology than the ones that would proclaim everyone needs to be the same.

Instead of making wars, we should be "teaching" our pasts, those that are more advanced than other races, not trying to use them to bend to our own wills and principles. You think those people in Iraq, Afganistan and other 3rd world countries even understand what democracy really is?

You can't change a species overnight, going to take 100's more years, before there's a united species, with one goal, one god and one government. Even if a country stormed across the whole globe, today, one fell swoop, it would still take hundreds of years to bring all the countries into conformity. There will always be insurgents, those that always disagree with single rule, single control.

To me that's what makes the world great, separated as it is, because with a separated world I have choices about where I want to go, where I might want to live. With a controlled world, there's no longer a place to escape to, a place for change, because it's controlled by the "one".

I look at it like this, at one time the societies and civilizations were like a giant vortex with mankind at the top and outer regions of it, as time and civilization swirled around and inside this vortex they have slowly been pulled to the bottom of it, the smallest narrow portion of it. I sort of like the vastness of the gaping portion of the vortex, than the narrowness of the bottom of it where everything is compact and controlled.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/8/2004 1:25:04 AM   
SeaMonkey

 

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Come on ravenhood isn't your imagination stimulated enough to think outside the "vortex". Just because humans are subjected to conditional responses manipulated by their environment doesn't mean they have to succumb to narrowed thought processes. If that were true we would never have arisen from the constraints of the caves, our instincts. Abstract thought gives you the ability to change, to deny the conditioned reaction. Yes people have a hard time dealing with freedom, even these so called sophisticated western humans can't deal with taking responsibility for their own actions to a certain extent, its always someone elses fault. Conspiracy abounds, excuses everywhere, shortsighteness condemns those to a constricted future. Face it, it is not instinctive for people to be subjected, else they would be animals unable to contemplate their future, their death, their afterlife, their universe. We were created to choose.

< Message edited by SeaMonkey -- 4/7/2004 11:37:22 PM >

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/8/2004 7:03:41 AM   
hero_33

 

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Jesus Christ les_the_sarge!!!

Iv'e read your posts for too long now...for some one who doesn't like politics you sure like politics!!! In case you havent noticed, our country (or any other country that was or would be attacked in the manner that we were) Requires a balls out response! I for one am sick of hearing your anti Bush crap! He is the first politician to have the nuts to make a change in the middle east and establish democracy...not some falling appart colonialism that is now the middle east. a few scud missiles in response to a car bomb in the parking garage of the world trade center doesn't (and didn't) cut it...Result? 911!!! Now we have an administration that is willing to do something about it. The casualties of this war are sad but are going to happen as the middle east is dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century! It is us agaisn't them (them being the evil doers) and will be untill things are put right. What does pacifist you and the rest of the pacifist countries really expect? Almost 3,000 people died in that attack! Time to straighten things out in the middle east in the language they know best. Learn from history Les_the _Sarge, and give us all a break!

Steve.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/8/2004 7:36:34 AM   
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I invoke the "no politics" rule on this thread !

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/8/2004 9:00:49 AM   
Sarge


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quote:

ORIGINAL: SeaMonkey

Okay, do we use history to help solve the problems of the future/present? As I remember reading about the fall of Berlin in WW2, it took a quarter of million Russian casualties to root out the diehard Nazi vermin. Well.....what if we cordon off Fallujah, give the good folks 72 hours to vacate the premises, checking them all as they come out. Then........what? House to house, or just raze the place of living organisms with MOABs? Are we too civil? Is this a war or not? How long are we going to ****-foot around these animals?

What is war to you, ever been shot at then go to return fire just to see some family trying to run for cover under a hail of fire. Just wast them to is that what you are saying. Don't you think at that point you just lossed everything our Soldiers in this Country has ever Died for. And would we be just as bad as what we are fighting. I think so

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/8/2004 6:06:37 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

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Don't put words in my mouth Sarge, I have enough to spell out my opinion. Can't say I've ever walked in those shoes(war), this lifetime. My definition is formed by the past, present and future declarations of others. One thing seems clear, war is messy, mistakes happen, whether intended or not. I'm not judge or jury, just an observer, hopefully stimulating some different perspectives to guide mine. I would like to see war stay very messy, else it increases its viability, let's keep it last resort. Another very apparent thing is for there to be peace there must be a clear victor or the conflict continues. It seems the victor has to behave in a merciless manner at times to force the surrender, doesn't make it right or justifiable, just the facts. Sure there are always alternatives, but at what cost? What are you willing to bare as you search for the answer? Sometimes the question of your resolve will lead to a more humane conclusion, but you must establish what that resolve can be. Words sometimes don't convey that message, you can't go through life emitting lip service, there is a time to act and if it is appropriate with overwelming decisiveness. Life is not a rose garden, even if it was there are still thorns. It is a test, and this is a test of the emergency broadcast system, remember it is only a test.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/9/2004 9:10:03 AM   
Sarge


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Well SeaMonkey I do see your point. But remember if America acts swiftly we are judged by most of the world as jumping the gun- over reacting-looking for a fight -bla bla bla.But if we sit back and wait it out and not jump right in the middle of the issue(what ever it might be) we are accused of caring about nothing but are own interests. Just read some of the posts on this forum alone. America is the worlds cop like it or not that is the way it is and will be for a long time.America Help me, Help me,Help me.............did you really need to use that much force , we will take it from here and tell the world how you went about the whole issue the wrong way. How many American boys have given the lifes for someone esle's mess and got the finger when it was all over. Look at France just for starters.

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RE: Les_the_Sarge - 4/9/2004 8:51:23 PM   
hero_33

 

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Hey Les,

Just wanted to say that i'm sorry for my previously somewhat venemouse statements to your post on this thread. We are all entitled to our oppinions and I have mine. I strongly support the president and the actions in Iraq and I know you don't. That's fine and it's what makes the world go round. You contribute more to the war gaming community than I ever could and it is appreciated. Keep it up and viva la difference!

There, I feel better now

Steve.

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/9/2004 9:05:19 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

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We're in agreement Sarge, kind of hate to use an old cliche', but its appropriate, "Damned if you do! Damned if you don't!"

So I'm for being pro-active. History has taught us that inaction begets disaster and we have a most recent example ie. 911. So we must be aggressive, militarily as well as diplomatically, not to mention clandestinely, albeit tempered with compassion. It will be difficult and we will ruffle feathers, so what's the alternative.......simple.. there is none. And besides that we're the biggest kid on the block, with the biggest stick, so I say to the world "you don't like it....tough, what are you going to do about it?" Oh yeah will get some lip service and a some will help us ....the rest..... will stick there heads back in the sand and in the end we'll save their ass too, cause that's what Americans do.

< Message edited by SeaMonkey -- 4/9/2004 7:10:13 PM >

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/10/2004 10:53:27 AM   
Marines


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Like I said I was there and you have no idea what your talking about unless you have been there. But I agree...I went to disarm a dictator who possessed and used chemical weapons against his own people and Iran that alone should give you an idea of what he thinks it takes to win..."Anything and everything." But I guess it turns out that Iraq dosen't have any WMD's be they nuclear, biological or chemical even independent investigators contracted by the CIA, US, UK and others found no evidence of any WMD program, thier industrial complex that was needed to produce such weapons simply did not exist..but of course they had ample time to hide and bury them or send the to neighboring countries be they friendly or even mortal enemies.

It really dosen't matter now..our job is to faciliate a secure enviroment and to provide for a form of government which is democracy that hasn't been seen in the middle east ever unless you count colonial rule by the British. One thing is certain if we pull out now or in the near future by means of force or corrosion the rest of the Arab world will view us and our allies as weaklings.

Semper Fi

Say a prayer for my brothers in arms fighting in Iraq

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RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/10/2004 4:28:50 PM   
irrelevant


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Marines

One thing is certain if we pull out now or in the near future by means of force or corrosion the rest of the Arab world will view us and our allies as weaklings.

That's affirmative. But we also have to keep in mind, even though we were attacked on 9/11, it was not the people of Iraq who attacked us. Even though there are plenty of bloodthirsty bastards in Iraq fighting us, by no means is everyone there a bloodthirsty bastard. A vast majority of the people who live in, say, Fallujah are not much different from you and me; they live in a dwelling with their families, do what they have to do to eat, and complain about discomfort. When you say, lets "just raze the place of living organisms with MOABs," most of the organisms you propose to erase are not the ones who are our enemies. But of the ones of those who live on after such an operation, how many of them do you think will remain on the sidelines? Would we not simply be magnifying our dilemma rather than solving it? Hey, I'm not sure what we should be doing, but making new enemies faster than we are killing the old ones won't help any more than us being perceived as weaklings would. Let's don't forget, when we invaded Iraq, defeated and disbanded its military, we thereby took on ourselves the responsibility for restoring peace and order to the place. Just because some bad guys are making that job more complicated than we wanted it to be does not give us the right to say "screw this sh1t" and lash out in anger and frustration. We need a strategy to reduce the opposition to our occupation that does not actually work to increase it....

I know this will not be a popular view here, but if we will take it on ourselves to remake the world as we want it to be, we also have to give the world a reason to cooperate with us if we don't want to have to fight every step of the way. I don't think that's how we really want it to be.

< Message edited by irrelevant -- 4/10/2004 9:38:15 AM >


_____________________________

Fear the kitten!

(in reply to Marines)
Post #: 28
RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/11/2004 7:34:14 PM   
SeaMonkey

 

Posts: 754
Joined: 2/15/2004
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The MOAB referral was a questionable response, it was an incidental solicitation of ideas, remember I included the statement of letting the good people vacate the premises. Which I must say we seem to be getting. I'm not so sure that we need to concentrate on the institution of democracy presently, but maybe just provide a secure environment and let the democracy or form there of take its course. Anytime a new governing philosophy is introduced to an area completely devoid of its concept there is going to be some "growing pains". Rival parties will always embrace violence when there is a struggle for power, look at our own past. If you listen to the rhetoric of our present political climate it seems it is even not far off. Now take that mentality back to a medieval perspective which seems to simulate the mentality of Mid-Eastern culture and you get what we've got. Americans as well as the rest of the civilized world need to remember this is no quick fix, we are in for the long haul, instant gratification is not relevant. With the benevolent rise of MWDs proliferation, if we don't suppress the violent hatred of this region, we all know what the result is going to be. Let us not have to rededicate ourselves to this task as we did after 911, with a similar occurrence. We can debate the methods, but for the conclusion, we all agree upon. History has taught us the lesson, let us not forget.

(in reply to irrelevant)
Post #: 29
RE: Is the past a lesson for the future? - 4/14/2004 2:51:48 AM   
Marines


Posts: 162
Joined: 4/6/2004
From: USA
Status: offline
For one thing dip s**t I never said anything about any type of total destruction of a city, town or village using MOABs or Daisy Cutters "fuel air bombs" or any type of such weapon that was Seamonkey. Make sure you are quoting the right person next time.

Semper Fi

(in reply to irrelevant)
Post #: 30
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