Syria Civil War Spreads

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morriswalters
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Fri Jun 21, 2013 1:53 pm UTC

CorruptUser liberal democracies were pretty efficient. Slavery for instance was easy to be against, yet it took a Civil War here and more deaths than have occurred in Syria to put and end to it. And a sociologist might argue that before we did we destroyed the culture of those slaves and changed them in ways we may still be paying for today. The same for Native Americans. And dictatorships aren't all that good for keeping secrets. The allies had good reason to believe the Holocaust was taking place. The attack on the Kurds and the Armenians were known of.

I don't hate liberal democracies. But I suspect our motives for interfering. The Europeans could certainly, without our help, aid the rebels. Why don't they? Their lines of supply are shorter, the problems a more urgent threat to them since the waves of immigration come at them directly. They have advanced armies and capabilities.

To this date since 1900 we have intervened in multiple conflicts.
WW1
WW2
Korea
Vietnam
Panama
Iraq
Afghanistan

We toppled governments that didn't suit us, democratic or not. Iran, Chili, maybe Australia, and have monkeyed with others. And those are the ones you know about, because we have a liberal democracy. Care to hazard a guess what else we might have done that never came to light because liberal democracies act in secret when they wish?

However we'll do what we do. If Obama was the man I thought I voted for we wouldn't intervene. So the Democratic party has no credibility with me any more and neither does he.

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eran_rathan
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby eran_rathan » Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:10 pm UTC

Also Spanish-American War, Phillipine-American War (both were pre-WWI, so I'll let those slide), Serbia, Columbia, Cuba, etc.

Also also, its Chile. One's a nation, the other's a food.
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby CorruptUser » Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:11 pm UTC

Minor nitpick, but Chilean president Allende's last major act was to nationalize/collectivize the farms. Pinochet, the guy that used dogs to, well... trigger warning... was merciful compared to what would've happened if the farms were forcibly collectivized.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Fri Jun 21, 2013 3:04 pm UTC

Chile, I stand corrected.

Ain't democracy a bitch.

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addams
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby addams » Fri Jun 21, 2013 4:21 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:Chile, I stand corrected.

Ain't democracy a bitch.

Don't be Mean, Morris.

What do you mean by Democracy?
Mob Rule?

I don't care for Mob Rule.
Have you ever met a Mob?

Power to The People?
I would be More than willing to discuss The Subject.

Of course, If You and The Mob say I am Wrong, then I am Wrong.
Right?

Let Them Vote?
Sure. On What?

My Life? How about Yours?
Our Nation has fallen Short.
Every Nation falls Short.

At one time we were Reaching for The Stars with One Hand;
We were Reaching for Our Fellow Man with the Other Hand.

Now; What is Our Collective Imagination Reaching For?
Democracy? Mob Rule?

A Benevolent Monarchy? That is a Fine Idea, too!
What is Wrong with a Benevolent Monarchy?

It is every bit as good an Idea for Our Collective well being as Mob Fucking Rule is.
Again: Have you ever Met a Mob?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
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Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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eran_rathan
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby eran_rathan » Fri Jun 21, 2013 5:01 pm UTC

addams wrote:A Benevolent Monarchy? That is a Fine Idea, too!
What is Wrong with a Benevolent Monarchy?

It is every bit as good an Idea for Our Collective well being as Mob Fucking Rule is.
Again: Have you ever Met a Mob?


I, for one, would be perfectly OK with a constitutional elected monarchy.
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby sardia » Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:29 pm UTC

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/22/world ... ?ref=world
Since the US is starting to distribute weapons to Syria, we should take note as to the legacy of Libya. The weapons used to overthrow the dictator there are now in Syria. While that could be a good thing, it shows that weapons are really liquid and easily move across borders far from their origin or intended destination.

Personally, I think it's safer to use heavy weapons, like tanks, apcs, or aircraft. Those require maintenance, are easier to track, and have a bigger initial punch.

morriswalters wrote:Ok. There is no defensible position where the US intervenes in Syria and gains anything of value. As a purely budgetary matter how do you propose to pay for it? Borrow the money? We just cut the defense budget as part of the sequester. Explain to me why I want to spend the money to help people who will bite us at the first opportunity?

The rebels have extremists. The present regime has extremists and Iran. Like them or hate them, you better be prepared to deal with them. They are already threatening to send troops. If they do are we prepared for direct conflict with them? There is a good chance that we will have no fig leaf from the UN to cover and legitimize the deployment of assets greater than those we have at present. We might be blocked there by Russia or China. And they might do so for no other reason then to make our life miserable and to distract us.

The power relationships in the middle east are complex, we've showed that we don't understand them, and the Pentagon and the Political structure can't plan realistically. They smoke fairy dust and believe in Unicorns. I can see the debacle that was the Iraqi invasion played out again. Differently perhaps, but messy none the less. A no fly zone may or may not work. But it puts our already stretched assets in harms way. If you lose assets then prior history says that we will try to double down to get out of the hole.

Since I haven't heard anyone anywhere state a clear way forward help me understand what we hope to gain. What fairy tale do you think will take place? That the Syrian regime falls and is replaced with a democratic government which will make nice? That Israel will gain safety by removing a thorn in her side?

Explain to me our moral or ethical position. Why do we have the right to tell the Syrians what type of government they should have? Because a hundred thousand people are dead? How many would we kill by intervening? Peace in the region? How would that work? Perception among the population is that we kill Muslims because they are Muslims, with some basis in fact. We use blunt weapons that kill the innocent as well as those who are not.

Lastly, why should I trust our government? What is their agenda? They, being the complex power structure which is composed of long term highly secretive bureaucracies who seem to always have an agenda different than the political one.

CorruptUser wrote:Turns out liberal democracies have more incentive not to commit atrocities in other countries than dictatorships have. You only know about the horrible crap the US has done because of freedom of the press.
Liberal democracies have no reason to commit genocide in other countries at all. However indiscriminate murder seems to have never been a problem for most of them, particularly in the colonial period. And of course they practiced it at home at various times. The treatment of slaves and native Americans in the US, the treatment of Aborigines in Australia, the treatment of Jews in Europe. The South American cultures destroyed by the Spaniards and Portuguese. And that free press has often been a cheerleader. Our moral superiority is a thin garment.

You're no better than the warhawks who advocate we intervene. Explain to me why your position is morally defensible. The people of _____ will suffer more casualties if country Y intervenes in their conflict? Don't try to weasel out of personal responsibility after advocating a position whose recklessness and naivete rivals the grand delusions of even Cheney and Rumsfeld. Who the hell says "CorruptUser, I have no doubt. However I lose no sleep over what the Russians do. I can't take moral or ethical responsibility for the Russians or for that matter the Syrians, I can only speak for me. I don't insist that I'm right. I just wanted to say it." How do you square those two positions? You argue against intervention, yet you don't take responsibility for consenting to their actions, or in your words "doing nothing". How about this:
Don't lose sleep over what the world does in Syria.

You can come back when you have a real position you wanna defend. The sad thing is, you have valid points, it's just not very coherent.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Sun Jun 23, 2013 1:00 am UTC

If I were the responsible party my position would be exactly the same. Syria for the Syrians. Theirs to succeed or fail. My ethical position is solid. I lose no sleep. The very act of intervention is the grossest kind of nanny state behavior, the idea that we know whats best for them, better than they know themselves. Who appointed us? if there were a valid global governing body than perhaps that body might be in a position to decide, maybe.

Let's set it out. There is no government in waiting with the moral standing to take control who won't murder one side or the other. What you have is a number of groups with competing agendas and motives. Two Religions at war with each other, that have been at each others necks for some time. If Assad wins it may well be very bloody. But no less so if he loses.

So we send in Military aid. Who knows where that winds up? We send in troops. That isn't what the Rebels want. They will hate us for being there. They want cover. They want us to neutralize the advantage that Assad holds, by shutting down his Air Force while denying him resupply. If the Russians or the Chinese block action in the UN and decide to run a blockade through Iran, what are you prepared to do to stop it? If on the other hand we simply create a no fly zone what keeps the Russians or the Chinese from supplying advanced air defenses? Or if in desperation Assad does massively what he may not have done to this point and uses his chemical arsenal widely.

The situation in Iraq was much different, Iran had a vested interest in seeing that regime fail. Not here. They have troops in country now, their proxies are in country. Do you have any reason to believe that you wouldn't end up with an Iraq in reverse? A Shiite insurgency that would be every bit as bloody as the Sunni insurgency in Iraq. It would be easy for Hezbollah to cross back and forth. Suppose they take the chemical munitions that are in Syria and move them the way the Vietcong did along with any other advanced weapons that can be carried by animal or man. Israel must be terrified of this. Let them do that heavy lifting. There are good reasons to not intervene and let it play itself out. We can't control the outcome. If you want to save people think of how to take care of the refugees, feed them, keep them safe, and keep the death rate down by giving them somewhere to run. And keep the event from traumatizing the children.

This is not Kosovo. You can't be a little bit pregnant. If you aren't prepared to go all in then stay home. At least Chaney was prepared to go all in. You and people like you are the ultimate busybodies, certain in your high moral principles that you are right. That you can change things. If the UN and the rest of the world really cared they would intervene no matter what we chose to do if the moral position were unequivocal. The Europeans could intervene under NATO or through the EU, I'll believe that when I see their troops dying in Syria, I think they may be smarter than us. No Chinese intervention. No Russians, or Canadians, or Venezuela, or Egypt, or anybody. Everybody is using proxies. Is there a trend here that you see. So yeah, I have no hard time sleeping at night.

Now about protesting intervention. Surely you jest. Why would or should I? The Politicians have been fairly intelligent about how they have done what they have done and the American body politic has in most cases has willingly gone along. Before Peter Pan flies in and accuses me of dick measuring I'll share some wisdom, no that's not the right word, let's make it an observation. The protests and subsequent disenchantment over Vietnam had as much to do with the upper middle class having their asses shipped off to Vietnam as it did about anything else. I haven't seen a lot of moral outrage on campus this time around. Nobody is making those over educated young people die in the deserts of Iraq or Afghanistan. Nobody over the border to Canada. No draft. No outrage. Do you know the chant I heard the most. "Hell no, we won't go." ,and at no time did the protests over Vietnam ever represent more than a minority of people. Fatigue set in, people grew tired of body bags and Cronkite on the news every day with the KIA and the missing every evening. And the politicians stage managed much better. No live video of coffins coming home, low casualties, drone strikes and money. Sterile war, unless of course you are Muslim. Then no helicopter evac to advanced hospitals, no protection, when the troops go to base. So don't preach at me. It was a mistake sharing my opinion on this, but this may be the only place I'm aware of where I can. If I'm offered a choice at the ballot box I'll vote. That's about it.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby CorruptUser » Sun Jun 23, 2013 1:53 am UTC

morriswalters wrote:If I were the responsible party my position would be exactly the same. Syria for the Syrians. Theirs to succeed or fail. My ethical position is solid. I lose no sleep. The very act of intervention is the grossest kind of nanny state behavior, the idea that we know whats best for them, better than they know themselves. Who appointed us? if there were a valid global governing body than perhaps that body might be in a position to decide, maybe.


Let's imagine we are talking about Civil Rights. What right does someone from New York have to tell Alabama they can't lynch black people? Alabama for the Albamans, they can have whatever government they want! So what if they murder any black person that dares to suggest that poll taxes are unfair and separate but equal isn't equal, it's fair because Alabama says it's fair! Alabama is theirs to succeed or fail.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby addams » Sun Jun 23, 2013 4:10 am UTC

eran_rathan wrote:
addams wrote:A Benevolent Monarchy? That is a Fine Idea, too!
What is Wrong with a Benevolent Monarchy?

It is every bit as good an Idea for Our Collective well being as Mob Fucking Rule is.
Again: Have you ever Met a Mob?


I, for one, would be perfectly OK with a constitutional elected monarchy.

What? We have to Elect the King?
How is that any different? King. Congressman. President.

What's in a Name, Shakespeare?
If we elect the person, then it is Politics as usual.

Or; Worse. ech. It Can get worse.
I wish it would not get worse.

We can't have a King. It's not a Stupid Idea.
Other people have Royals. We Can't.

We are too poor and stupid.
Maybe I have that backwards.
We are Stupid and Poor.

Poor is a sign of Stupid.
We were Stupid first and Poor second.

We Can't have a King. We can still Dream.
What kind of King would we have, if we could have one?

I want the King to be Benevolent.
What do you want the King to be?

Syrian? That would be funny.
They don't have a King, either.

Jordan does. We can't have him.
They are using their King.

The King of Jordan is the King of many Syrians.
I listened to the King of Jordan speak.

I was so impressed. He wants Peace.
He had some Ideas. He said he wants Peace.

That man sounded like he had given The Subject some thought.
Besides; He was easy to look at.

A Benevolent King that is easy to look at.
What do you want in a King?

The King of Jordan has his hands full.
http://www.latimes.com/news/world/world ... 4321.story

What happens in Syria is important to him.
At first it was hard for me to believe; A few, some, a small but Hyperactive and Facebook savvy group of people are Facebooking that they are Subjects of the King of Jordan; And are going to fight on The Syrian Side. It is not so difficult to believe. People do that. No matter What some people will want to be On The Other Side.

What did they call it? The Grass is always Greener?

So; They have a King and He has a bunch of Subjects that were not always his Subjects.
Do the Syrian Refugees have the Protection of The King? Is it enough? Are they His Subjects?

5 hundred thousand human lives plus all the people that were living along being Jodans before the Refugees arrived.
That is a lot of Responsibility. I have no idea what it would be like to be King. During these days it must Suck!

I do know what it is like to learn to do something and then Pray I never have to do it. Is that what it is like?
The men and women he was speaking to have military training. I want to believe The King does not want War.

It is Right and Proper to have a Military. It is good to have people The People can turn to.
In my imagination each and every person in That Nation is Out Ranked by The King.

The Americans may need someone to explain it to them.
It is a good thing that some of the Tools of War have come to Jordan. Right?

Every tool, no matter where it was made, No matter what color it is or what kind of Flag is painted on it;
When it is on Jordan Soil it is under the command of The King.
It is so dangerous to have Americans with big powerful tools hanging around.

Those people need something to keep them busy.
The Stories I have heard.
Some Sabotage is not the Work of Evil Geniuses.
Some Sabotage is the Work of Bored Idiots.

The well trained and Proud Jordan Army is in Charge of The Americans.
Dear God; I hope they do The Right Thing.

Americans can work in The Camp!
Under Direct Supervision!

Do You Know What Kind of Reputation The American Military has?
Heavy Equipment can move Water.

They can do other stuff, too.
I Vote for Direct Supervision!

They are the ones with all the Secrets. Right?
We don't need any more Secrets.

Is it a Secret how to aim and fire one of those big missiles?
That is a Secret I could not learn in One Day.

What about the Ground to Air ones?
Can you fire one? I would not be able to recognize one. You?

Water? I can usually recognize water.
Ph 7. Clearish. No smell. No taste to very little taste. Water.
Water is Heavy. People are heavy because they have so much water inside them.
Human beings are bags of water. I can recognize a human being; Usually at a glance.

Well; What skills could you contribute? What will The King be doing?

I bet he Prays. I do!
I bet no one would bet against me.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
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Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

morriswalters
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Sun Jun 23, 2013 11:53 am UTC

Helping Syria is not in the same class of events. Not today. You neither understand the culture, or the experiences of the Syrians. They aren't in your political realm, they are independent. Alabama chose at some point to enter into that political union and then tried to leave. The civil rights struggle took place in a union where federal powers had held primacy, which we decided by exactly what the Syrians are doing now, civil war. Imagine for a moment that Britain had shipped arms to the South and blockaded our fleet during the civil war. It's easy to look at Syria and say we have seen the truth and Assad is a monster and the rebels are heroes of the revolution fighting for the poor and downtrodden. Only the rebels aren't heroes, they're a faction in a family fight. There are high causalities because it is a civil war. The whole nation is a battlefield. Our whole nation was a battlefield during our civil war. This country is littered with monuments and battlefields where over 600,000 died.

Understand the limits of the world you live in. Are we going to interfere in Russia if civil war breaks out? Why aren't we supporting the Pakistani Taliban in their righteous fight against the evil Pakistan government? If Quebec takes up arms against the government of Canada do we aid them? You're picking sides, deciding to interfere based on your prejudices. Despite any lip service to the contrary by the government, this isn't about aiding the Syrians, this is about deposing Assad. We didn't intervene Syria before this point and Assad is no more evil than he was then, no more repressive. We are taking advantage of an opportunity. The suffering gives us a Casus belli, no more no less. This way it isn't naked aggression, it's humanitarian relief.

And the point is moot. It has already started. We have the CIA in Jordan training as well as missiles and fighter jets, Jordan of course denies the training, but the rebels confirm it. And sources in the government seem to say it's so. Oh and the French as well. And nobody asked me, damn!

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby schismtracer » Sun Jun 23, 2013 1:17 pm UTC

Personally, I think it's safer to use heavy weapons, like tanks, apcs, or aircraft. Those require maintenance, are easier to track, and have a bigger initial punch.


Schematics are also liquid. With your idea, we'd be seeing knock-offs (if not carbon copies) of US tanks, apcs, and aircraft blowing shit up (possibly our shit) within a few years. That's even less acceptable.

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sardia
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby sardia » Sun Jun 23, 2013 4:20 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:Helping Syria is not in the same class of events. Not today. You neither understand the culture, or the experiences of the Syrians. They aren't in your political realm, they are independent. Alabama chose at some point to enter into that political union and then tried to leave. The civil rights struggle took place in a union where federal powers had held primacy, which we decided by exactly what the Syrians are doing now, civil war. Imagine for a moment that Britain had shipped arms to the South and blockaded our fleet during the civil war. It's easy to look at Syria and say we have seen the truth and Assad is a monster and the rebels are heroes of the revolution fighting for the poor and downtrodden. Only the rebels aren't heroes, they're a faction in a family fight. There are high causalities because it is a civil war. The whole nation is a battlefield. Our whole nation was a battlefield during our civil war. This country is littered with monuments and battlefields where over 600,000 died.

Understand the limits of the world you live in. Are we going to interfere in Russia if civil war breaks out? Why aren't we supporting the Pakistani Taliban in their righteous fight against the evil Pakistan government? If Quebec takes up arms against the government of Canada do we aid them? You're picking sides, deciding to interfere based on your prejudices. Despite any lip service to the contrary by the government, this isn't about aiding the Syrians, this is about deposing Assad. We didn't intervene Syria before this point and Assad is no more evil than he was then, no more repressive. We are taking advantage of an opportunity. The suffering gives us a Casus belli, no more no less. This way it isn't naked aggression, it's humanitarian relief.

And the point is moot. It has already started. We have the CIA in Jordan training as well as missiles and fighter jets, Jordan of course denies the training, but the rebels confirm it. And sources in the government seem to say it's so. Oh and the French as well. And nobody asked me, damn!

I already told you about the the goals the US could be pushing for in Syria. All you said is those goals are too complicated, too hard, and could fail. Meaning you added nothing to the debate but merely tried to confirm our own worst fears and doubts. My other criticism of you is the constant hedging, dear god you hedge like a wall street trader. You're against providing aid to the crisis except you advocate to send humanitarian aid to the surrounding countries. What you don't get is that every man fed, treated, and sheltered means another man is sent to his death fighting. You say that intervening is bad except in cases in the past where it worked because those were about us instead of them. You're like the mirror image of the boy who cries wolf, saying nothing is worth mobilizing around. In addition, just because it's already happening doesn't make your viewpoint moot, this isn't the first crisis, nor the last. Lastly, you slammed Obama pretty hard for not being "the president you thought he was when you voted for him" since he decided to more actively help the rebels. His initial viewpoints were much like yours, except there's good evidence to say his hesitation made the crisis far worse.
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/15/us/po ... wanted=all

Edit: schismtracer, I forgot about you, my mistake. The reason I support using heavy weapons and aircraft is because we can retrieve or destroy those things as opposed to guns we're currently sending in. While it could be possible for the region to take our equipment and copy them, recent history suggests that's not the case. Iran has our F-14s which they still haven't copied, and nobody makes our military equipment that isn't licensed. It's much easier to buy heavy military weapons compared to making them. The other point I wanted to make is the maintenance involved in these machines. A good gun will last decades with little maintenance, and require nothing more than bullets. APCs, tanks and aircraft require dedicated teams of mechanics, fuel and spare parts all of which can be strictly limited and tracked. Of course, the only foreseeable options is sending in aircraft via a no-fly zone where we bomb the shit out of Syria and then fly home.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Sun Jun 23, 2013 5:31 pm UTC

sardia wrote:I already told you about the the goals the US could be pushing for in Syria.
Ok. No weasel wording. You can't elucidate a strategy that works. There is nothing for the US there. There isn't going to be. Your concerns can be of two types. Humanitarian concerns, to which I reply. I don't care. On the pantheon of things that I care and worry about, Syria stands somewhere well below, say my puppy. There is no strategic goal that is worth the price. None. They have nothing and can do nothing. If Israel fears them then let Israel do the dirty deed.

In the past we have intervened when it was to our advantage to do so. Look at Kosovo's location. You can be sure that the people who are paid to worry about it were sweating bullets. That kind of instability in Eastern Europe?
Image
Let's look at Somalia. Did we quit there because the problem went away? Fuck no. We quit because the price was going to be too high and the reward non existent. Name the places that we didn't have a strategic interest in that we directly intervened in and stuck it out when it got tough. We either kick ass where the kicking is easy. Think south of our border. Or where we have a strategic interest either real or imagined. Think Iraq or Afghanistan. And we've had our ass handed to us any number of times. Afghanistan is a wash. When we leave it has to potential to be Vietnam all over again. And the dying hasn't stopped in Iraq. And there are troops still in Kososvo. Would you like me to continue.

If your humanitarian button needs to be pushed I'll give you a list of places I think need help more than those people in Syria.

The Congo, we, as in the west, broke it, think Belgium.
Africa in general. We abuse them for their resources. Why should we care if the environment is fucked in Nigeria. Or that we have to invent a concept called conflict diamonds, because the profit derived from our need for pretty baubles drive various types of war and slaughter.
How about the undereducated and impoverished here at home.
How about some love for the Latinos south of the border. Our love for illicit drugs is playing hell down there. The death toll for the drug war is pretty serious and as brutal as anything Assad might have done.

If you haven't quit reading by this point, I don't mean that we should send supplies to the neighboring nations, although we should, it's the best kind of aid, rather that we bring them home to the US, or at least offer that option. That would remove them far enough from the conflict to prevent shuttling back and forth effectively using the neighboring states as R and R for the Rebel fighters.

Now this is pointless. If the foregoing isn't direct enough for you than I guess it just isn't. If you think we ought to send them tanks and you can sell that, have at it, but you haven't sold it to me. Obama has multiple points of failure at this point. I don't fault him for his choices but I do disagree with him. I bought into what he was selling and he hadn't done anything to me at that point. I now know better. What little faith I had left in the political process has pretty much left.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby yedidyak » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:07 am UTC

Meanwhile the war in Syria is spreading.

Yesterday and today there has been major fighting in Lebanon between supporters of the Sunni rebels and Assad, with at least 16 Lebanese soldiers killed, and the mosque / hq of a radical Sunni preacher raided.

Also in Gaza Hamas (pro rebel) tried to arrest a leader of Islamic Jihad (Iranian proxy, pro Assad) and in the process killed him. In response IJ cut off ties with Hamas and announced they would no longer follow the Hamas-Israel ceasefire, and so fired rockets at Israeli towns - drawing an Israeli response.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby addams » Wed Jun 26, 2013 2:28 am UTC

This is Heart Breaking to me.
You were correct. Syria's War is spreading.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-23051451

It may sound like superstition when The People say, "Where Americans go, Troubles Follow."
The Truth is even Stranger than that.

What can The People do? Pray?
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby yedidyak » Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:36 am UTC

Reports of a massive chemical weapons attack outside Damascus, with between 'dozens' (in later reports AJ says 213) and upwards of 500 killed.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby Mambrino » Wed Aug 21, 2013 8:56 pm UTC

yedidyak wrote:Reports of a massive chemical weapons attack outside Damascus, with between 'dozens' (in later reports AJ says 213) and upwards of 500 killed.


According to BBC, the video footage seems to be authentic.

I must say that the timing is quite suspicious: A nerve gas attack in outskirts of Damascus just when the UN inspectors have arrived there?

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby jestingrabbit » Thu Aug 22, 2013 11:01 am UTC

Mambrino wrote:
yedidyak wrote:Reports of a massive chemical weapons attack outside Damascus, with between 'dozens' (in later reports AJ says 213) and upwards of 500 killed.


According to BBC, the video footage seems to be authentic.

I must say that the timing is quite suspicious: A nerve gas attack in outskirts of Damascus just when the UN inspectors have arrived there?


The inspectors that are there are there to look at three specific sites. The Syrian government is calling these reports baseless and saying that they won't be allowed to go to the new site. Also, the high estimates are now more than a thousand dead.

But, who do you suspect of being underhanded here? Who does the timing benefit?

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Stability of the world crude supply. Because, if the conflict crosses borders into Jordan or Iraq or Saudi Arabia, the credit crisis would be a picnic in comparison.
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby Heisenberg » Thu Aug 22, 2013 1:20 pm UTC

NPR interviewed a chemical weapons expert this morning. He said the videos were consistent with a chemical attack but more importantly the physicians on site are reporting in detail a wide range of symptoms consistent with Sarin gas exposure.

This is really bad.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby stevey_frac » Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:25 pm UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:
But, who do you suspect of being underhanded here? Who does the timing benefit?



Quite obviously, the rebels. If they can frame the syrian government as blatantly, and exuberantly crossing Obama's 'Red Line', they can probably get a bunch of aid, or sanctions on the syrian government, or better yet, convice someone to come in and start helping them. Boots on the ground as it were.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:27 pm UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:Stability of the world crude supply. Because, if the conflict crosses borders into Jordan or Iraq or Saudi Arabia, the credit crisis would be a picnic in comparison.
The whole area is unstable. Let the Europeans fix it. If they think it is important enough, let them fix it. They are geographically closer, meaning shorter lines of supply. It's on their flank. We don't have the money. This interventionist philosophy of fix the world has cost us a fortune and bore little fruit. Can you say that either of the places we have intervened in, are any better for our intervention? How many Syrians will die if we intervene there. What was the death toll in Iraq, civilians only? Afghanistan? And are they prepared, and are their citizens prepared to spend the money and the years it will take to make Syria whole?

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby jestingrabbit » Thu Aug 22, 2013 2:39 pm UTC

stevey_frac wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:
But, who do you suspect of being underhanded here? Who does the timing benefit?



Quite obviously, the rebels. If they can frame the syrian government as blatantly, and exuberantly crossing Obama's 'Red Line', they can probably get a bunch of aid, or sanctions on the syrian government, or better yet, convice someone to come in and start helping them. Boots on the ground as it were.


an aritcle wrote:But as of Wednesday night, with more than 120 chaotic videos circulating online delivering scenes of men, women and children splayed out and struggling for breath on school, mosque and makeshift hospital floors, the likelihood of a grand rebel conspiracy seemed extremely remote.


And what do they gain if it is a conspiracy? A week of confusion until soil samples come through? Seems a lot of work for little if any real benefit.

morriswalters wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:Stability of the world crude supply. Because, if the conflict crosses borders into Jordan or Iraq or Saudi Arabia, the credit crisis would be a picnic in comparison.
The whole area is unstable. Let the Europeans fix it. If they think it is important enough, let them fix it. They are geographically closer, meaning shorter lines of supply. It's on their flank. We don't have the money. This interventionist philosophy of fix the world has cost us a fortune and bore little fruit. Can you say that either of the places we have intervened in, are any better for our intervention? How many Syrians will die if we intervene there. What was the death toll in Iraq, civilians only? Afghanistan? And are they prepared, and are their citizens prepared to spend the money and the years it will take to make Syria whole?


They could just provide air support, like they did in Libya, where an entrenched dictator was removed for very little cost to the US.
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Thu Aug 22, 2013 4:45 pm UTC

Who's next after Syria?

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby stevey_frac » Thu Aug 22, 2013 7:46 pm UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:
And what do they gain if it is a conspiracy? A week of confusion until soil samples come through? Seems a lot of work for little if any real benefit.



I think we've crossed paths here without meeting. I'm suggesting it might be possible that the rebels released some Sarin gas for real, and harmed a large number of people, with the intent of framing this action on the government.

What they gain from this is potential aid against the government from the international community if they frame it successfully. It just doesn't make sense for the government to release chemical weapons on the same day a UN inspection team arrives.

--Steve

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby Vahir » Fri Aug 23, 2013 3:16 am UTC

stevey_frac wrote:
jestingrabbit wrote:
And what do they gain if it is a conspiracy? A week of confusion until soil samples come through? Seems a lot of work for little if any real benefit.



I think we've crossed paths here without meeting. I'm suggesting it might be possible that the rebels released some Sarin gas for real, and harmed a large number of people, with the intent of framing this action on the government.

What they gain from this is potential aid against the government from the international community if they frame it successfully. It just doesn't make sense for the government to release chemical weapons on the same day a UN inspection team arrives.

--Steve


Honestly, I don't think the rebels are even capable of pulling something like this off. The leadership doesn't seem to have much authority.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby stevey_frac » Fri Aug 23, 2013 3:21 am UTC

Vahir wrote:
Honestly, I don't think the rebels are even capable of pulling something like this off. The leadership doesn't seem to have much authority.


I sincerely hope they did not. I just find the timing of all of this to be rather odd.

--Steve

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby jestingrabbit » Fri Aug 23, 2013 5:19 am UTC

stevey_frac wrote:It just doesn't make sense for the government to release chemical weapons on the same day a UN inspection team arrives.


What if they don't want to be caught holding the stuff, so use it to get rid of it? Or the government forces are disorganised and/or desperate and/or uninformed? Or just think the inspectors won't matter?

If inspectors go in they should be able to work out how the distribution of the gas occured (and it seems undeniable that's what's happened at this time). So, let them in, see what happened. Let them find some spent rocket artillery and work out if they're the distribution vector.
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby yedidyak » Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:13 pm UTC

Syrian opposition say they are smuggling samples to the inspectors, so hopefully the UN will be able to verify at least if and what was used.

In other developments: Two bomb attacks in Lebanon's Tripoli, outside Sunni mosques. Definitely linked to the sectarianism spreading from the Syrian civil war. Also, Sunni groups claiming to be challenging Shiite Hezbolla by firing four rockets into Israel.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby stevey_frac » Fri Aug 23, 2013 6:06 pm UTC

jestingrabbit wrote:What if they don't want to be caught holding the stuff, so use it to get rid of it? Or the government forces are disorganised and/or desperate and/or uninformed? Or just think the inspectors won't matter?

If inspectors go in they should be able to work out how the distribution of the gas occured (and it seems undeniable that's what's happened at this time). So, let them in, see what happened. Let them find some spent rocket artillery and work out if they're the distribution vector.


If they don't want to be caught holding the stuff, that seems as simple as 'put the stuff in a building you don't allow the inspectors to visit'.

That government forces are disorganized / desperate/ uninformed seems far more likely to me. But I thought that they'd be 'winning' lately, if you can consider any possible outcome in Syria a victory at this point...

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby EMTP » Sat Aug 24, 2013 8:34 pm UTC

A large chemical weapon attack is certainly what this was:
The group’s statement said that in three hours on Wednesday morning, the three clinics received some 3,600 patents who had symptoms indicating exposure to a chemical nerve agent, including breathing problems, dilated pupils, convulsions, foaming at the mouth and blurred vision. Many of the medics in the three centers also experienced some symptoms, Mr. Cornish said. One of them died.


http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/25/world ... es.html?hp

That's nerve gas. Every day of the week and twice on Sunday. In medicine it goes by the name of the "cholinergic toxidrome" or SLUDGE to its friends.

The question would seem to be whether we intervene, or whether we allow nerve gas to take a giant leap towards becoming an accepted tool of warfare. As little as I want us to punch that tar baby, I think the time has come to give Assad a push.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby yedidyak » Sat Aug 24, 2013 8:56 pm UTC

EMTP wrote: I think the time has come to give Assad a push.


Wait... You actually want Western intervention to depose a leader of an Arab country?

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby EMTP » Sat Aug 24, 2013 9:00 pm UTC

yedidyak wrote:
EMTP wrote: I think the time has come to give Assad a push.


Wait... You actually want Western intervention to depose a leader of an Arab country?


Certainly. This surprises you?
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby yedidyak » Sat Aug 24, 2013 9:16 pm UTC

EMTP wrote:
yedidyak wrote:
EMTP wrote: I think the time has come to give Assad a push.


Wait... You actually want Western intervention to depose a leader of an Arab country?


Certainly. This surprises you?


Just a bit shocked to agree with you on something.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby sardia » Sun Aug 25, 2013 7:33 am UTC

yedidyak wrote:
EMTP wrote:
yedidyak wrote:
EMTP wrote: I think the time has come to give Assad a push.


Wait... You actually want Western intervention to depose a leader of an Arab country?


Certainly. This surprises you?


Just a bit shocked to agree with you on something.

I believe Obama will aim for a warning shot. Something like Kosovo light. I don't see how that leads to Assad leaving though. Unless he decides to throw caution to the win or just try really hard.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby Pez Dispens3r » Sun Aug 25, 2013 7:54 am UTC

morriswalters wrote:We toppled governments that didn't suit us, democratic or not. Iran, Chile, maybe Australia

I know I'm a bit late to the party on this one, but maybe Australia? What are you referring to?
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby morriswalters » Sun Aug 25, 2013 10:53 am UTC

This is unreliable and classified as just possible, not likely. In 1975 UK governor-general, Sir John Kerr,dismisses the government, perhaps with the urging of the CIA. Carter issued a denial in 77. I question if this is true, but it wouldn't have surprised me.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby eran_rathan » Sun Aug 25, 2013 1:21 pm UTC

sardia wrote:
yedidyak wrote:
EMTP wrote:
yedidyak wrote:
EMTP wrote: I think the time has come to give Assad a push.


Wait... You actually want Western intervention to depose a leader of an Arab country?


Certainly. This surprises you?


Just a bit shocked to agree with you on something.

I believe Obama will aim for a warning shot. Something like Kosovo light. I don't see how that leads to Assad leaving though. Unless he decides to throw caution to the win or just try really hard.


Honestly, even if the US or EU decides to enforce a 'no fly zone' or did something like Kosovo it would be a huge deal as far as the Syrians are concerned.
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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby yedidyak » Sun Aug 25, 2013 3:10 pm UTC

But a no fly zone is very complicated. It needs the destruction of all of Syria's air defences, and possibly most of its air force. Something on that scale would lead to Syrian retaliation against probably all its neighbours.

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Re: Syria Civil War Threatens to Spread

Postby sardia » Sun Aug 25, 2013 4:30 pm UTC

yedidyak wrote:But a no fly zone is very complicated. It needs the destruction of all of Syria's air defences, and possibly most of its air force. Something on that scale would lead to Syrian retaliation against probably all its neighbours.

Yes, but a series of bombings or "air strikes" as the US calls it can be achieved quite easily. They were thinking of Tomahawk missiles launched from the ships off in the Mediterranean sea. It doesn't even have to be effective, it just has to look like the US did something. That way, it looks like Assad stopped using chemical weapons, until he uses them again. But until he does, we'll have the perception that our strike was effective.


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