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Afghan war leaks

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Akolouthos View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Aug 2010 at 19:09
Originally posted by Seko Seko wrote:

Take it as a good thing for I have nothing but admiration for your verbosity. 


I did, never fear, despite my pretence of pique. You know, I've always been rather flattered that people have abbreviated and come up with interesting semantic games to play with my AE name. Makes me feel lucky I picked it, and happy to be a part of a community. Smile

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote drgonzaga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Aug 2010 at 23:10
OK guys quit the smooching...save it for your evenings watching Logo TV! After all the issue was the Wikileaks imbroglio that in the end only underscored two facts: 1) US intelligence distrusts their Pakistani counterparts and 2) the vetting of enlisted men in the military has fallen woefully short! Not that this last was not already obvious when it came to the medical wing after the Hasan fiasco. The laughable point is that neither of these situations should have arisen given the vaunted primacy that gave us the Department of Homeland Security! Other than that, the foray into domestic politics by Seko in a pique of Naturalism is really beside the point.
 
By the way, perhaps everyone has forgotten this blast from the past:
 
 
Are we undergoing a "revenge of the nerds" moment? As for Afghanistan, I will wager 10 million quatloos Afghanistan will remain on the US military horizon for many years to come.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Aug 2010 at 01:06
@ Seko

Thank you for sharing. That was a very interesting post. It does seem that in trying too please everybody, the US government is going to end up pleasing nobody!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Aug 2010 at 01:34
http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/2010/08/04/collateral-murder-indeed-2/

Wikileaks - counter productive? Yes i think so too! From the link:

"This release of information is actually more damaging to downsizing strategies, since we will end up leaning on tribal alliances and intelligence assets more, not less."

It's was a severe b!@tch slap across the intelligence communities face! A nasty little police action is about to become a lot more dirtier,  not less.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2010 at 00:49
Hugo, for those who buy the cliche that Afghanistan is a place where empires go to die, a contrarian view:
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/07/26/bury_the_graveyard?page=full
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2010 at 10:03
Originally posted by lirelou lirelou wrote:

Hugo, for those who buy the cliche that Afghanistan is a place where empires go to die, a contrarian view:
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/07/26/bury_the_graveyard?page=full
 
While the article mentions several facts and ignores others (like the fact that Arabs and Turks were the only empires that fully conquered the territory while many other empires failed and some were partially successful) it is too simplistic in nature and makes several mistakes in its assupmtions plus its obvious propaganda written from a political point of view.
 
However this doesn't deny the fact that Afghanistan is trouble and a constant source of trouble nor it means that the American adventure will be successful.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gharanai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2010 at 12:25
Originally posted by lirelou lirelou wrote:

Hugo, for those who buy the cliche that Afghanistan is a place where empires go to die, a contrarian view:
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/07/26/bury_the_graveyard?page=full
 
Surely the article looks nothing else but a propaganda source.
Afghanistan was never part of Alexander's empire (while he was alive) but part of Seleucid Empire which was more of a Greco-Bactrians than a Greek empire.
It is a fact that invading Afghanistan is the easiest things to do for any big empire but occupying it is the worst nightmare they could have.

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

While the article mentions several facts and ignores others (like the fact that Arabs and Turks were the only empires that fully conquered the territory while many other empires failed and some were partially successful) it is too simplistic in nature and makes several mistakes in its assupmtions plus its obvious propaganda written from a political point of view.

Al-Jassas
Neither Arabs nor Turks were able to conquer the country entirely.
The Arabs came via Herat province and it was more of a missionary trip rather than a military engagement, Kingdom of Gandhara and Kabul even stayed out of Islam up till Ghaznavid Empire.
If it had been a military engagement and the Arabs had succeeded like many other Arab invaded countries around the world today Afghanistan should had been culturally driven with Arab customs and traditions while even today in majority of the country Pashtunwali code of conduct is practiced and decisions are made upon that rather than Islamic code of conduct (Shariha).

Turks had by far better of the Arabs (counting Ghaznavid to be of Turk origin) in the region.
The longest term that this region has stayed under the rule of is of Persian Empire which had not only occupied the region but also even today many of traditions and customs of Iran is shared by Afghanistan.

After Inception of Afghanistan in 1747 it has never been occupied by any force.
The only success story in the region one could talk of would be of Islam as Religion which has dominated the region since mid 600s, even that came to full dominance only during Ghaznavid Empire in 963.


Edited by Gharanai - 07 Aug 2010 at 12:29


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zagros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2010 at 14:35
Actually Samanids controlled all of today's Afghanistan too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2010 at 16:42
Kabul was taken twice by Arab armies, each time the ruler accepts vassalge and when a civil war breaks he rebells. After the Abbasid revolt it permenantly went out of Arab control however as Zagros pointed out, Samanids conquered it and Islamised it for good.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2010 at 17:40
Gharani, why does a contrarian view have to be 'propaganda'? The article is what it is, and it is either factual, or contains errors. Please feel free to point any errors of fact out.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gharanai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 Aug 2010 at 22:22
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:

Actually Samanids controlled all of today's Afghanistan too.

Well I count that as a Persian Empire too or more literally as Saltanat Fars as referred to (+Sassanids and all other dynasties before it) locally.

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Kabul was taken twice by Arab armies, each time the ruler accepts vassalge and when a civil war breaks he rebells. After the Abbasid revolt it permenantly went out of Arab control however as Zagros pointed out, Samanids conquered it and Islamised it for good.
 
Al-Jassas

I totally agree and to add more the British took Kabul thrice but again taking it is different than occupying it.

Originally posted by lirelou lirelou wrote:

Gharani, why does a contrarian view have to be 'propaganda'? The article is what it is, and it is either factual, or contains errors. Please feel free to point any errors of fact out.

I might be wrong about it but that's how I thought it was trying to portray and give the illusion to the tax payers that what have done is righteous (with some of which I too would agree) and shall continue  while trying to avoid showing the real dirty face of war to the public. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Aug 2010 at 05:29
Originally posted by Gharanai Gharanai wrote:


I might be wrong about it but that's how I thought it was trying to portray and give the illusion to the tax payers that what have done is righteous (with some of which I too would agree) and shall continue  while trying to avoid showing the real dirty face of war to the public. 


No disrespect intended towards you Gharanai, but i always find it to be a strange thing when i encounter ordinary but very smart people who expect modern warfare to be clean and free of all mistakes. Chaos and war go together like two peas in a pod.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Aug 2010 at 11:26
It's because they fall for the propaganda that is spread by the military and by the politicians who start the wars. It's also because they are not in fact very smart.
 
(In fact, how can anyone be 'ordinary' and 'very smart' at the same time?)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Aug 2010 at 20:45
I'm sorry but we might not be understanding each other.

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:


It's because they fall for the propaganda that is spread by the military and by the politicians who start the wars. It's also because they are not in fact very smart.


And the opposition to them doesn't delve into the realm of propaganda itself? Ermm Why that is quite remarkable! Hmmm... However, that doesn't make them any less smart just because they have a different view of events. Just because someone has an opposing view doesn't make them, what.... Stupid, ignorant, idiotic, naive, retarded or a part of the sheeple? That is just part of the problem with the world. We dismiss the views of others quite so easily, that we forget that they are human beings who deserve the dignity and respect of being heard, regardless of any exposed naivety. Yes, including the politicians and the military!Shocked Yes, i have a weak spot for anything that is heavily ridiculed.

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(In fact, how can anyone be 'ordinary' and 'very smart' at the same time?)


I'm not sure i follow. Can an ordinary person choose not too use their intelligence for the benefit of more than one person without being dismissed as stupid or ignorant? Cannot a very smart person be quite ordinary in intelligence outside their realm of expertise?

Edited by Panther - 08 Aug 2010 at 20:46
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zagros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Aug 2010 at 22:07
Quote And the opposition to them doesn't delve into the realm of propaganda itself? Ermm Why that is quite remarkable! Hmmm... However, that doesn't make them any less smart just because they have a different view of events. Just because someone has an opposing view doesn't make them, what.... Stupid, ignorant, idiotic, naive, retarded or a part of the sheeple?


It's not simply, or necessarily, an opposing view that is the problem (opposing views are a good thing provided said views have a solid grounding).  The problem is ignorance of important facts and motives and taking things too readily and too often at face value which is the problem. 

It's the view that things are black and white, so if you criticise black you must be siding with white.  It can't be assumed that all people work like that. 


Edited by Zagros - 08 Aug 2010 at 22:11
"There was glory in pissing, Corabb decided as he watched the stream curve out and make that familiar but unique sound as it hit the ground." So true.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 Aug 2010 at 23:27
Originally posted by Zagros Zagros wrote:


The problem is ignorance of important facts and motives and taking things too readily and too often at face value which is the problem. 


I see. Good point. Maybe i have been trying too analyze way too much into this? One of my wife's pet peeves. Though i do feel that i need to point out by mentioning that i consistently see both sides applying such a view upon one another. These are just an example of a much larger problem in the world, I am a Conservative Republican, therefore i am equated with as and in holding racist views, as well as being thought of as being selfish and self centered. And i do see conservatives doing some of the same things to their Liberals counter parts, as per another ex. in calling them godless, constitution wrecking, money spending, weak in the knee heathens. Very little room for rational discussion. It's maddening i tell you!

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It's the view that things are black and white, so if you criticise black you must be siding with white.  It can't be assumed that all people work like that. 


Agreed. It's not that simple. Nothing in life ever is. And thank god for that too! What a boring life it would be if anything were.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Aug 2010 at 00:03
There is a very fine line between propaganda and ignorance. Ignorants repeat propaganda, possibly even invent it,
 
I'd say that propaganda is anything said to reinforce a particular view which is held regardless of the existance of facts in favour or contray. That includes omitting facts, telling half the story, making the other half of the story appear ludicrious
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gharanai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Aug 2010 at 12:56
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:

 
No disrespect intended towards you Gharanai, but i always find it to be a strange thing when i encounter ordinary but very smart people who expect modern warfare to be clean and free of all mistakes. Chaos and war go together like two peas in a pod.

Non taken!
I am not saying that a warfare should have a clean or free of all mistakes, neither it has ever been achieved in history.
What I appose is of fruitless warfares that are firstly very badly planed and then when they see losing (one way or the other) it they simply won't regret their mistakes and learn from it instead they will try to emphasis on you that what so ever is happening is the right thing.

I would agree with Omar's last line of "I'd say that propaganda is anything said to reinforce a particular view which is held regardless of the existance of facts in favour or contray."

Anything is a propaganda to me which tries to show one party immortal and the other party a useless piece of crab.
Being said that I too won't be so proud of bragging that Afghanistan is a "Graveyard of Empires" since with that thousands of lives of Afghans have been lost through history, the country has been destroyed and the people are still living in some where around middle ages.
So now to go on and say that we have achieved what others can't would be as propagative as the article which tries to under estimate all the sacrifices of Afghan lives that have been lost for the sake and prosperity of others (Russia and Persian in case of Britain wars; US, Pakistan and Arab states in case of Soviets and now China, Russia, Iran and Pakistan in engagement with US and Allied Forces).

Through out all these wars and great games the biggest loser has been the winner of battlefields, Afghans.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Aug 2010 at 14:03
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:

I'm sorry but we might not be understanding each other.

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:


It's because they fall for the propaganda that is spread by the military and by the politicians who start the wars. It's also because they are not in fact very smart.


And the opposition to them doesn't delve into the realm of propaganda itself? Ermm
How can you read that into what I said? All I said was the successful propaganda is that spread by the military and the politicians that start the wars. Any other propaganda around doesn't sem to be anything like as successful, since as you observe,  what people fall for is the idea that war can be clean.
 
Symptom: people think war can be clean.
Cause: propaganda that war can be clean.
makes sense.
 
Symptom: people think war can be clean.
Cause: propaganda that war must be dirty.
doesn't make sense.
 
If you don't think that is the propagands that is being successful, then I lose complete track of what you are trying to say.
 
Quote
Why that is quite remarkable! Hmmm... However, that doesn't make them any less smart just because they have a different view of events. Just because someone has an opposing view doesn't make them, what.... Stupid, ignorant, idiotic, naive, retarded or a part of the sheeple? That is just part of the problem with the world. We dismiss the views of others quite so easily, that we forget that they are human beings who deserve the dignity and respect of being heard, regardless of any exposed naivety. Yes, including the politicians and the military!Shocked Yes, i have a weak spot for anything that is heavily ridiculed.
But it was you initiating the ridicule, by saying they were smart but believed (inexplicably, it appeared to you) that war could be clean. That's oxymoronic. If you believe war can be clean, then you cannot be smart.
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(In fact, how can anyone be 'ordinary' and 'very smart' at the same time?)


I'm not sure i follow. Can an ordinary person choose not too use their intelligence for the benefit of more than one person without being dismissed as stupid or ignorant? Cannot a very smart person be quite ordinary in intelligence outside their realm of expertise?
 
Can an 'ordinary person' be very small? Or very tall? Or very good at golf or at art or at mathematics? Being 'very' anything straightway makes you not ordinary.
 
Of course being very good at one thing doesn't mean you cannt be poor or ordinary at something else. But 'very smart', tout court, is rather different because it implies a general intelligence rather than a specific skill.
 
And incidentally to say someone is not 'very smart' is not to say that they are stupid or ignorant. Just average (to add something else that I never said to your list of what I'm supposed to have said)..
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Aug 2010 at 16:10
GCLE, in re:  "what people fall for is the idea that war can be clean."

If memory serves, Sir Winston promised nothing but "blood, sweat, and tears" back in 1939. I don't recall ever hearing about 'clean'. In my generation (Vietnam), the underlying message was 'necessity'. Granted, our leaders vision of the 'communist menace' was outdated, rendered obsolete by the death of Stalin. But the examples of Hungary, the Berlin Crisis, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and Czechoslovakia (1968) were fresh in their minds. No one ever promised us a quick, clean war. Perhaps back in 1898, prior to the Spanish-American War, but that was the 'Yellow Press'. Military propaganda in wartime tends to be the 'Drive on, lads. It's a long and bloody road, but your country needs you' variety.

The entry of the 5th Special Forces Group (my old unit) into Afghanistan was certainly spectacular in that it did accomplish the mission, i.e., take down the Taliban, but I doubt that anyone up at the higher levels of command was sanguine about piecing together an Afghan government that could replace the Taliban. I believe the tone of General Trainer's book (Cobra II) on Iraq is this: As soon as the political leadership started hearing things from their generals about how hard the war was going to be, they replaced them.

War is, after all, a continuation of politics. The vision of military leaders sitting around the officers club, plotting how to get the next war started, is a cartoon worthy only of the Left.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Aug 2010 at 20:06
Originally posted by lirelou lirelou wrote:

GCLE, in re:  "what people fall for is the idea that war can be clean."

If memory serves, Sir Winston promised nothing but "blood, sweat, and tears" back in 1939.
Indeed, apart from it being 1940, when he took office. But 'dirty' here doesn't mean 'not having to work hard or suffer privations'. Dirty here, as I think Panther also meant, means 'we will break any rules that get in the way'. I certainly don't recall Churchill saying anything like that.  
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I don't recall ever hearing about 'clean'.
I do. The impression was widespread that 'our chaps' wouldn't do anything nasty like torture prisoners. See virtually any film, US or UK, contemporary with the war, or indeed just after it: no matter how dirtily the 'Japs' or the 'Boche' fought, 'our' hands were always clean.
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In my generation (Vietnam), the underlying message was 'necessity'. Granted, our leaders vision of the 'communist menace' was outdated, rendered obsolete by the death of Stalin. But the examples of Hungary, the Berlin Crisis, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and Czechoslovakia (1968) were fresh in their minds. No one ever promised us a quick, clean war. Perhaps back in 1898, prior to the Spanish-American War, but that was the 'Yellow Press'. Military propaganda in wartime tends to be the 'Drive on, lads. It's a long and bloody road, but your country needs you' variety.
Yes, but irrelevant to the point, which is that 'our side' is seen - not by all of course, but by many - as having (metaphorically) clean hands - i.e. sticking to the rules, not blindly killing civilians, not torturing prisoners.
 
In Vietnam faced with episodes like My Lai or the famous picture of the Vietnamese officer murdering a prisoner, yes, the facade cracked a bit.
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The entry of the 5th Special Forces Group (my old unit) into Afghanistan was certainly spectacular in that it did accomplish the mission, i.e., take down the Taliban, but I doubt that anyone up at the higher levels of command was sanguine about piecing together an Afghan government that could replace the Taliban. I believe the tone of General Trainer's book (Cobra II) on Iraq is this: As soon as the political leadership started hearing things from their generals about how hard the war was going to be, they replaced them.

War is, after all, a continuation of politics. The vision of military leaders sitting around the officers club, plotting how to get the next war started, is a cartoon worthy only of the Left.
What I wrote was
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

It's because they fall for the propaganda that is spread by the military and by the politicians who start the wars.
I will agree that is ambiguous. What I meant and literally said was:
a) by the military
b) by the politicians who start wars.
I didn't mean 'by the military who start wars'. I agree that is done by politicians.
 
However the military does indeed spread the propaganda that war can be clean, by going on about minimising collateral damage, emphasing the precision of weapons, covering up atrocities, developing remote weapons and generally going on about how'our boys' always follow the rules.
 
Without the photos being published, how many generals would have come out and described what was being done at Abu Ghraib? How many quite frankly said: "This kind of thing happens in wars, especially counter-insurgent wars, and it's because we have to hire the kind of people who enjoy doing it. But you want the war so you have to put up with it."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Aug 2010 at 23:45
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

How can you read that into what I said? All I said was the successful propaganda is that spread by the military and the politicians that start the wars. Any other propaganda around doesn't sem to be anything like as successful, since as you observe,  what people fall for is the idea that war can be clean.


I didn't say, or meant to imply that you said that. You must forgive me, for i was thinking aloud by pointing out that propaganda works both ways.
 
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If you don't think that is the propagands that is being successful, then I lose complete track of what you are trying to say.
 


All i am saying is that Antiwar advocates, insurgents or anyone with a serious political agenda can be and often are just as sophisticated and effective with their propaganda as the DoD or the military.

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But it was you initiating the ridicule, by saying they were smart but believed (inexplicably, it appeared to you) that war could be clean. That's oxymoronic. If you believe war can be clean, then you cannot be smart.


It wasn't meant to be ridicule. Of course it sounds oxymoronic. I don't think it is the fault of the ordinary person, especially if that is the common belief of the time held by most. But  i would venture a guess that humans want or have this need to believe that about war, especially after the last wars proves to be short and decisive. That we are or must be close to something quite significant. Those of a higher intelligence can be just as easily misled as the ones with "ordinarily average intelligence", making them not any smarter or very smart as compared to those they try too distance themselves from.  re: 90-91 gulf war, or World War 1, the Franco-Prussian wars and even the US civil war. Not to intentionally neglect police actions and small wars, which i believe can be just as bloody locally, lasting longer and just as intense as a larger war and with as much propaganda flying about!

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Can an 'ordinary person' be very small? Or very tall? Or very good at golf or at art or at mathematics? Being 'very' anything straightway makes you not ordinary.
 


Personality wise, yes. literally, no. I think you might be taking me a little too literal on this?

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Of course being very good at one thing doesn't mean you cannt be poor or ordinary at something else. But 'very smart', tout court, is rather different because it implies a general intelligence rather than a specific skill.
 


I disagree. I guess i just have a different view than you do? I think most people are very smart and if not held back by their peers, society, government or themselves and if given the opportunity can do extraordinary things. The dreamers who become the doers. Heck, we celebrate those type of individuals everyday! I don't see what the problem is here? Is it in fear of the masses rather then embracing them? I don't know, maybe it's my American views that is clouding our discussion here?

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And incidentally to say someone is not 'very smart' is not to say that they are stupid or ignorant. Just average (to add something else that I never said to your list of what I'm supposed to have said)..


The last thing i want to do is to intentionally put words into the mouths of others. If that is what i have done to you or others, then to everyone, please accept my apologies. I was just asking a question with no other intent in mind.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Aug 2010 at 01:07
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by lirelou lirelou wrote:

GCLE, in re:  "what people fall for is the idea that war can be clean."

If memory serves, Sir Winston promised nothing but "blood, sweat, and tears" back in 1939.


Indeed, apart from it being 1940, when he took office. But 'dirty' here doesn't mean 'not having to work hard or suffer privations'. Dirty here, as I think Panther also meant, means 'we will break any rules that get in the way'. I certainly don't recall Churchill saying anything like that.  


War is chaos in every sense of the word. What we are trying to do is impose order and a rule of law upon ourselves during an upheaval of human senselessness. Not that that is not noble and the humane thing to do. Quite commendable of course. The problem, as i am trying to point out, is what happens when any foe, in general, doesn't share the same respect we try have for our rules, or at least our efforts in holding ourselves too?

Yes, it would be worth it if any foe or political opposition recognized the efforts we endeavor going to for the sake of humanity in a time of war. But, i have yet to see very little or the reading thereof, any magnanimity coming from the other side of the political divide or indeed, even from across the battle lines.

 
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However the military does indeed spread the propaganda that war can be clean, by going on about minimising collateral damage, emphasing the precision of weapons, covering up atrocities, developing remote weapons and generally going on about how'our boys' always follow the rules.


Minimizing collateral damage - They do practice that.
Emphasizing precision weapons - They are much more precise then anything else out there
Covering up atrocities - Doing a piss poor job of it too. Innocent until proven guilty means something in the military too.
Developing remote weapons - While emphasizing saving the lives of soldiers
Our boys following the rules - As compared to the insurgents. That is a big hell yes!

[quote
Without the photos being published, how many generals would have come out and described what was being done at Abu Ghraib? How many quite frankly said: "This kind of thing happens in wars, especially counter-insurgent wars, and it's because we have to hire the kind of people who enjoy doing it. But you want the war so you have to put up with it."
[/QUOTE]

So what if they did? Many would have dismissed the comments in favor of focusing on something else! Bringing us back to the irrelevancy of where we are at now of talking over each other. Nothing solved.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Aug 2010 at 02:17
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:

Our boys following the rules - As compared to the insurgents. That is a big hell yes!
Is it?
I don't think so. In fact as this is the topic of the thread at the moment I'd even say I think you've bought some propaganda there.
 
What makes you think that the opposition aren't also trying to fight according to rules? And that there aren't also many people in the opposition who break them?
Or for that matter, why do you think people are talking about rules at all?
 
The sentence:
"The US breaks the rules, but only because they are forced to by the Taliban who fight in an underhand style. The US must show they are better by trying to hold themselves to standards while the Taliban are free to do as they wish"
is pure propaganda designed to make the reader think that the US is more noble than the Taliban.
Facts that confirm or oppose this sentence are irrelevant because the aim of the sentence is to reinforce that the US are the good guys despite some annoying leaks (inconveinent facts) which may throw that into doubt
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Aug 2010 at 02:18
Incidentally, minimising collateral damage and developing remote weapons are mutually exclusive.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Aug 2010 at 03:20
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

 
What makes you think that the opposition aren't also trying to fight according to rules?


I actually think they are trying too get more organized, or attempting to do so anyways.... and apply more civilized rules, while at the same time being highly confused on how to go about.

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And that there aren't also many people in the opposition who break them?


I am currently thinking that their greatest strength is in being decentralized is also their greatest weakness is actually getting those who are supposed to be under them to also follow their orders and rules of behavior.

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The sentence:
"The US breaks the rules, but only because they are forced to by the Taliban who fight in an underhand style. The US must show they are better by trying to hold themselves to standards while the Taliban are free to do as they wish"

is pure propaganda designed to make the reader think that the US is more noble than the Taliban.
Facts that confirm or oppose this sentence are irrelevant because the aim of the sentence is to reinforce that the US are the good guys despite some annoying leaks (inconveinent facts) which may throw that into doubt


I am sorry Omar my friend, but i would have too disagree. That appears to be a weak argument. Are they, the Taliban and AQ, not really free to do as they wish? Are they being picketed at their camps by peace advocates, having their exercises disrupted by them from time to time? Are they hounded every where they go by press corps from all over the globe, accusing them of one atrocity after another? Are they and their soldiers being  (been) called baby killers to their faces and spat upon (In the past) or had assumed too have been ones when no one was looking? Are people reading their torture manuals to the same degree as what has happened to their Western counterparts? Do people pay attention to the news only when a western soldier or forces are the ones who screw up or commit atrocities? Are people taking a moral stand against them at their arms bazaars throughout the middle eastern region? Are people of the region telling them no and chasing them out when they are forcing themselves upon them ( I mean living and hiding amongst them). As far as the last one is concerned, i can only think of places in Afghanistan and Iraq  who are and have done just that, with very little fanfare or cheer from the world's populace! Otherwise, most people are afraid of them, and for a good reason.

 I think most people all around the globe know exactly what the consequences are if they stood up to these type of extremists is automatic death and they are scared half too death to do anything! Far easier to criticize and verbally attack something more benign that doesn't punch back that hard against a weak target as a civilian or as permanent either!

Respectfully,
Panther
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Omar al Hashim Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Aug 2010 at 08:12
Al Qaedia are irrelevent at worst. They have nothing to do with the Afghan war anymore (possibly ever)
 
The Taliban really aren't free to do as they wish. Their entire fighting force is drawn from the people in who's country they are fighting. Forget what you described, if the Taliban don't portray an image that they are better than America their whole fighting force will desert and they will cease to exist!
 
Besides, the answer to most of your questions is yes.
Quote Are they being picketed at their camps by peace advocates, having their exercises disrupted by them from time to time?
Yes. The peace activist types are vehmently anti Taliban.
Quote Are they hounded every where they go by press corps from all over the globe, accusing them of one atrocity after another?
Yes.
Quote Are they and their soldiers being  (been) called baby killers to their faces and spat upon (In the past) or had assumed too have been ones when no one was looking?
In Afghanistan? I don't know, but probably. Outside of it, they would be if they were there.
Quote Are people reading their torture manuals to the same degree as what has happened to their Western counterparts?
Moreso
Quote Are people taking a moral stand against them at their arms bazaars throughout the middle eastern region?
Dude they were invaded because of a moral stand. Its not like they can buy weapons on the open market.
Quote Are people of the region telling them no and chasing them out when they are forcing themselves upon them ( I mean living and hiding amongst them)
Like Swat?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Aug 2010 at 14:32
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:

War is chaos in every sense of the word. What we are trying to do is impose order and a rule of law upon ourselves during an upheaval of human senselessness. Not that that is not noble and the humane thing to do. Quite commendable of course. The problem, as i am trying to point out, is what happens when any foe, in general, doesn't share the same respect we try have for our rules, or at least our efforts in holding ourselves too?
Omar made most of my points for me, but I'll pick up on this.
 
The problem is not what happens when the foe breaks the rules (which he may or may not do). That's the general excuse, and an indication that Omar is right in saying yo appear to be affected by the same propaganda.
 
The problem arises because human beings can only rarely stand up to the stress of war, to the fear and the privations and the ever present danger - more so in modern asymmetrical warfare where the enemy is all around - or may be all around - there ... or there... or over there... even in 'occupied' territory.
 
That's not the fault of the 'foe', it's inherent in the nature of war itself.

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Never believe anything until it has been officially denied - Sir Humphrey Appleby, 1984.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote DukeC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Aug 2010 at 17:49
Afghanistan is one of the worst places in the world to fight an insurgency and NATO is trying to subdue one of the most independently minded peoples ever. Acting like this is a clearcut case of a cohesive force threatening western civilization is nuts. People are fighting against the Karzai government and it's NATO backers because they are there and that's what they do and have done as far back as recorded history.
 
The more pressure put on the Pashtun regions of both Afghanistan and Pakistan the greater the resistance is going to become. These are people who went up against the strongest land army in history and didn't blink(they had a lot of help from the west, but they did the dying), they're going to keep shrugging off Karzai government and NATO attempts to control them.


Edited by DukeC - 10 Aug 2010 at 17:51
we have a blind date with destiny..and it looks like she's ordered the lobster
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Panther Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Aug 2010 at 03:32
Originally posted by Omar al Hashim Omar al Hashim wrote:

Al Qaedia are irrelevent at worst. They have nothing to do with the Afghan war anymore (possibly ever


I am not ready too dismiss a violent group such as this, that is more than willing enough too fly a plane full of people in building full of civilians.
 
Quote
The Taliban really aren't free to do as they wish. Their entire fighting force is drawn from the people in who's country they are fighting. Forget what you described, if the Taliban don't portray an image that they are better than America their whole fighting force will desert and they will cease to exist!


I disagree that it is made up of only people from Afghanistan. A lot of their manpower comes primarily comes from Northern Pakistan, that is, the ones who do not join the Pakistani Taliban. Otherwise, Southern Afghanistan  and other parts of the world is where they get most of their  soldiers.
 
Quote
Besides, the answer to most of your questions is yes.
Quote Are they being picketed at their camps by peace advocates, having their exercises disrupted by them from time to time?
Yes. The peace activist types are vehmently anti Taliban.
Quote Are they hounded every where they go by press corps from all over the globe, accusing them of one atrocity after another?
Yes.
Quote Are they and their soldiers being  (been) called baby killers to their faces and spat upon (In the past) or had assumed too have been ones when no one was looking?
In Afghanistan? I don't know, but probably. Outside of it, they would be if they were there.
Quote Are people reading their torture manuals to the same degree as what has happened to their Western counterparts?
Moreso


Will, that is indeed reassuring. Unfortunately, that is not making it into the world's media.


Quote
Are people taking a moral stand against them at their arms bazaars throughout the middle eastern region?


Dude they were invaded because of a moral stand. Its not like they can buy weapons on the open market.
[/quote]

Invaded because of a moral stand? All the Taliban had to do was hand over OBL and cohorts for the attacks on 9-11 and tah-dah - no more problems from the US. After a fair trial and if convicted, preferably a trial taking place in New York if that had transpired, I would have supported not putting him or any of his cohorts to death in favor of a life sentence in solitary confinement for life with no chance of parole.

Quote Are people of the region telling them no and chasing them out when they are forcing themselves upon them ( I mean living and hiding amongst them
Like Swat?


No. Like a tribal community coming together, without the benefit of any military forces, and driving & keeping them out.


Edited by Panther - 11 Aug 2010 at 03:33
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