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Thread: Syria

  1. #1
    Senior Member All-Star Shane Wahl's Avatar
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    Syria

    Since there was nothing here, I figured I would start this. It looks as though the U.S. is headed, again, into another conflict.

    What are thoughts about this? I certainly have mine, but it would take me more time than I have at the moment to fully articulate it. I will say that I have an Iraq war veteran in my class who was completely beside himself with anger and frustration that the same story, the same buildup, the same stupidity, etc. has reared its head again.

  2. #2
    Senior Member All-Star PseudoSABR's Avatar
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    What's totally unfortunate is that the current government in Syria is rather secular, though very totalitarian; the rebels aren't likely to be as secular (though I don't know this for sure) and probably no less oppressive.

    We don't even know for sure that Assad ordered the chemical strike and given how quickly he acquiesced to the demand for UN inspectors, I'm guessing it was a rogue commander.

    It's just a difficult and bloody and long affair a people to win their own freedom, but really, there's nothing the international community to accelerate the process.

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    Of the 238 years of our existence (if you include both 1776 and 2013), we have been at war for 217 of them.
    This is what we do. We are like drug addicts. As soon as our current war(s) begin to wind down, we instinctively begin pursuing our next "fix".
    It disgusts me.
    It is not our job to play World Police, and in fact we do not even have the moral grounds to pretend that it is our job.
    We consistently use the threat of nuclear weapons to justify war. The fact remains that in the history of the world, only one nation has ever used an atomic weapon against another human population.
    We pretend we have the moral authority to go to war to send a message that ethinic cleansing will not be tolerated. Do we forget the tens of thousands of Native Americans that we killed and/or rounded up and forced onto reservations?
    We complain about illegal immigration, we demand a fence and border police. Do we forget that we went to war with Mexico to acquire much of the land that today illegal immigrants are immigrating to?
    We threaten and admonish other nations who impede their influence onto others. Yet we seem to forget our own Banana Wars.
    We complain about deficits and debt, yet we don't seem to mind the fact that we spend at least $170 billion (some reports estimate it is as high as $1.7 to $1.8 trillion) each year maintaining 1,077 US military bases in at least 63 foreign countries.

    We demand that Muslim countries stop violating basic human rights, seemingly forgetting our own track record of slavery.

    Our government is in cahoots with big business to defraud the American citizen of their tax dollars, recklessly spent on military budgets that we don't need, and wars that we have no business being involved in. The lives, health, and mental well being of young men and women with good intentions have been consistently and constantly sacrificed, in most cases for no good benefit to the American people. Our children turn 18 and become subject to being used as if they are a commodity. It is disgusting.

    If leaders of nations in Africa, Asia, or the Middle East behaved the way our elected officials have behaved in regards to military affairs during our 238 year history, we would call them war criminals.

    We like to talk about other religions, other countries, other world leaders, and the problems they have that we must deal with. Baloney. When you have been at war for 91% of your existence, at some point it is time to look in the mirror, because it is likely you who have the problem.

    It's time to bring the boys (and girls) back home. I have many family members who have fought in Iraq or Afghanistan. The boys who came home are not the same people as the ones who left. They left with lofty ideals of freedom and honor. They have come home with wounds and scars, both mentally and physically. They left with the belief that they were doing some great good for their families and their nation and their people, and ALL of them have come home feeling used, and betrayed, and forgotten.
    I'm disgusted by all of it, and I am disgusted that we are once again embarking on yet another unjust war.

  4. #4
    Senior Member All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    With Obama's Iraq....I expect much the same as we saw previously. Only this time with the sides comically flipped in attacking/defending it. Pretty sad.

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    No win situation, imo. If he goes, he's a war monger, or someone that did not move fast enough. If he doesn't, he' soft and cowtowing to our allies.

    I'm not a big fan of violence and war, frankly.

    I do take some exception to my friend Mr. Brooks' statements.....I do think that sometimes there is a moral imperative to act as the world's police, even if we are not perfect ourselves. That said, I'm not certain this is one of those times (and Iraq certainly was not).
    Lighten up Francis....

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    Senior Member All-Star Badsmerf's Avatar
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    I'm just wondering how this is our conflict. Why is the UN urging the US to wait for military action until they are finished with their investigation? They didn't do anything to us... so why are we going to get involved? Especially without the approval of congress! This is absurd. Maybe we should concentrate on putting our tax dollars into better places... like the economy. Its amazing how negligent our leaders can be.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike wants wins View Post
    No win situation, imo. If he goes, he's a war monger, or someone that did not move fast enough. If he doesn't, he' soft and cowtowing to our allies.

    I'm not a big fan of violence and war, frankly.

    I do take some exception to my friend Mr. Brooks' statements.....I do think that sometimes there is a moral imperative to act as the world's police, even if we are not perfect ourselves. That said, I'm not certain this is one of those times (and Iraq certainly was not).
    I don't disagree with that. But I just think the exceptions are much fewer and more far in between then our government does. Nazi Germany exterminating millions of innocent people? Yeah, that crosses a line. But 99% of the crap we stick our noses in doesn't come anywhere near crossing that line.

    I also don't believe we are the only people on the planet with moral values. It doesn't need to be us every time. There are plenty of other civilized countries on the planet, it is about time one of them steps up and handles some of these situations.
    By us being the one to step in everytime, we are basically sub contracting our military out to every other civilized nation on earth, FOR FREE.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheLeviathan View Post
    With Obama's Iraq....I expect much the same as we saw previously. Only this time with the sides comically flipped in attacking/defending it. Pretty sad.
    Oh no doubt. No Republican wants to face re-election next year having to admit that they voted in favor of giving Obama war powers.

    "Mediocre breaking balls are a gift from God." - Kirby Puckett

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    Senior Member All-Star TheLeviathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kydoty View Post
    Oh no doubt. No Republican wants to face re-election next year having to admit that they voted in favor of giving Obama war powers.
    Right, we're going to see history repeat itself. Much sooner than I think many would have predicted.

    I wish I could sit back and laugh at conservatives decrying this sort of military action and liberals defending it - but it's just so freaking pathetic.

  10. #10
    Senior Member All-Star PseudoSABR's Avatar
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    As a liberal, there's no way I want war. I'm not sure how deep party patriotism runs for other liberals, but I'll have no problem decrying any hawkish behavior by Obama. I'm sure TV Dems will rally support for the president, but I doubt that's how most self-identified liberals will feel and act. Though, I'm sure all liberals will have a bitter taste in their mouth if Obama takes military action, me included.

  11. #11
    Senior Member All-Star PseudoSABR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
    Our government is in cahoots with big business to defraud the American citizen of their tax dollars, recklessly spent on military budgets that we don't need, and wars that we have no business being involved in. The lives, health, and mental well being of young men and women with good intentions have been consistently and constantly sacrificed, in most cases for no good benefit to the American people. Our children turn 18 and become subject to being used as if they are a commodity. It is disgusting.
    While, I don't disagree with the sentiment here. (And actually, I'd champion much of what is said here.) I think it's important to note that our country's past and current systemic oppressions give us the access to the very ideas that allows us to question it and the permission to promote such ideas. Ironic, sure.

    One wonders without the threat of American military imperialism would our goods cost so cheaply, would oil flow so readily, would our very economic model hold, could we, indeed, wax philosophy on a baseball message board?

    Food for thought.
    Last edited by PseudoSABR; 08-31-2013 at 12:21 AM.

  12. #12
    Super Moderator All-Star ChiTownTwinsFan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Brooks View Post
    I don't disagree with that. But I just think the exceptions are much fewer and more far in between then our government does. Nazi Germany exterminating millions of innocent people? Yeah, that crosses a line. But 99% of the crap we stick our noses in doesn't come anywhere near crossing that line.

    I also don't believe we are the only people on the planet with moral values. It doesn't need to be us every time. There are plenty of other civilized countries on the planet, it is about time one of them steps up and handles some of these situations.
    By us being the one to step in everytime, we are basically sub contracting our military out to every other civilized nation on earth, FOR FREE.
    If that was the reason we entered WW2 I would applaud our ethics and morals. But it wasn't.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badsmerf View Post
    I'm just wondering how this is our conflict. Why is the UN urging the US to wait for military action until they are finished with their investigation? They didn't do anything to us... so why are we going to get involved? Especially without the approval of congress! This is absurd. Maybe we should concentrate on putting our tax dollars into better places... like the economy. Its amazing how negligent our leaders can be.
    The problem is that the UN is powerless. It's the right idea since no single country should be in a position to decide which conflicts are just/unjust. The problem is that the UN members have self interest and it stalls any significant action. In this case it is Russia and possibly a few others.

    Do not want any part of Syria. Stay out.

  14. #14
    Senior Member All-Star Shane Wahl's Avatar
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    Strangely, I think I have actually nothing to add to this! You guys were pretty thorough . . .

    Sidenote: Eugene Jarecki's "Why We Fight" might be the most important documentary that all Americans should watch. And his new one "The House I Live In" (about the "war" on drugs) is also fantastic.

  15. #15
    Senior Member All-Star Shane Wahl's Avatar
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    Exclusive: CIA Files Prove America Helped Saddam as He Gassed Iran - By Shane Harris and Matthew M. Aid | Foreign Policy

    "In 1988, during the waning days of Iraq's war with Iran, the United States learned through satellite imagery that Iran was about to gain a major strategic advantage by exploiting a hole in Iraqi defenses. U.S. intelligence officials conveyed the location of the Iranian troops to Iraq, fully aware that Hussein's military would attack with chemical weapons, including sarin, a lethal nerve agent.The intelligence included imagery and maps about Iranian troop movements, as well as the locations of Iranian logistics facilities and details about Iranian air defenses. The Iraqis used mustard gas and sarin prior to four major offensives in early 1988 that relied on U.S. satellite imagery, maps, and other intelligence. These attacks helped to tilt the war in Iraq's favor and bring Iran to the negotiating table, and they ensured that the Reagan administration's long-standing policy of securing an Iraqi victory would succeed. But they were also the last in a series of chemical strikes stretching back several years that the Reagan administration knew about and didn't disclose"

  16. #16
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    Why is poison gas evil, but bombs and guns are not? War is war, either you are playing to win, or not. Now, radiation lasts for hundreds of years.....that's different.
    Lighten up Francis....

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike wants wins View Post
    Why is poison gas evil, but bombs and guns are not? War is war, either you are playing to win, or not. Now, radiation lasts for hundreds of years.....that's different.
    I would guess the idea is that it is almost impossible to use WMD's without harming a lot of civilians. You can't really aim sarin gas, at least not the same way you can aim a bullet or a bomb.

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    I'd sum this up in two words: stay out.

    Republicans and Democrats are doing a great job of being hypocrites here too. We don't need more wars. The problem is that the powers that be benefit immensely from them, at the expense of the fine men and women who risk their lives so that the elite can get richer.

    There's a time for war. This isn't it.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
    I'd sum this up in two words: stay out.

    Republicans and Democrats are doing a great job of being hypocrites here too. We don't need more wars. The problem is that the powers that be benefit immensely from them, at the expense of the fine men and women who risk their lives so that the elite can get richer.

    There's a time for war. This isn't it.

    I'm about 99% sure this is my stance also.
    Lighten up Francis....

  20. #20
    Senior Member Big-Leaguer
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    Quote Originally Posted by diehardtwinsfan View Post
    I'd sum this up in two words: stay out.

    Republicans and Democrats are doing a great job of being hypocrites here too. We don't need more wars. The problem is that the powers that be benefit immensely from them, at the expense of the fine men and women who risk their lives so that the elite can get richer.

    There's a time for war. This isn't it.
    I have to agree. As a veteran of all-expenses paid year-long staycations to both Iraq and Afghanistan, I can say my very own idealistic perspectives have changed as others here have aptly described. It remains an immense honor to serve, but that should in no way relate to our readiness to expend military force. We justify large military budgets by framing it as a deterrent. I'm inclinded to believe (and hope) that will be the outcome of this situation: a lot of posturing.

    It pains me to my core that we couldn't learn the lessons from our very own past to spare the loss of so many brave American lives over the last 10 years. I can only pray we stop in our tracks on the currently similar path.

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