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Posts: 7605/8194
(07-Jun-2008 at 07:08)
Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Blind Seer: View Post
Not if they are from a different sect of Islam than they are.
There are a few extremists who think like that, but fewer than you seem to think. You'll find those people in USA too, like evangelists claiming that Catholics aren't really Christians etc.
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Yes, however as I've stated in my previous post, if the extremists would not show civilian establishments (schools, churches, Synagogues) the same courtesy that we do for theirs. They would burn them down, along with whomever is in there regardless.
According to your logic this would be the fault of the Americans for hiding there in the first place. Nor has USA shown much courtesy towards civilian establishments, it has bombed hospitals, news agencies etc.
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Posts: 88/284
(07-Jun-2008 at 07:42)


Quote:
There are a few extremists who think like that, but fewer than you seem to think. You'll find those people in USA too, like evangelists claiming that Catholics aren't really Christians etc.
Oh, believe me, I've come across a few people like that.

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According to your logic this would be the fault of the Americans for hiding there in the first place. Nor has USA shown much courtesy towards civilian establishments, it has bombed hospitals, news agencies etc.
More courtesy than if it were the other way around, I assure you. Personally, I'd consider hospitals pretty much off-limits, but alas, I am not the one who makes those decisions.

Refusal to comprimise only succeeds in driving the devil's bargain. However, when one comprimises one's morals, they become the devil's bargain.
#22  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 07:45)


Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
What on earth makes you think they want to die? They may be willing to die to defend things that are important to them, but that usually earns a medal in a national military...
Ummm... Maybe the fact that they strap bombs to their chests. Maybe it's because they were encouraged to do so from a very young age. They even have children's television shows telling them to do so.

Refusal to comprimise only succeeds in driving the devil's bargain. However, when one comprimises one's morals, they become the devil's bargain.
#23  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 09:40)


Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Blind Seer: View Post
Ummm... Maybe the fact that they strap bombs to their chests. Maybe it's because they were encouraged to do so from a very young age. They even have children's television shows telling them to do so.
dont start on indoctrinating young children:



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=703ZJSzyyOA

----

As for the bomb strapping, you'll notice that once "terrorists" acquire proper weaponry they stop resorting to suicide bombing. When youre structurally oppressed by a superior, unyielding foe, resistance tends to take on non-conventional forms. That's the whole point of guerrilla warfare, is it not?

You sound like the Roman prefect, complaining that the ignorant barbarians won't submit to your sound and just rule, that they instead resort to cruel and dishonourable tactics. And they're a homogeneous group, let's not forget about that. Oh, and they eat their young.

Oh, i like this. Let's play "dehumanizing-the-official-state-enemies-so-mass-killing-them-is-not-only-justified-but-a-necessity-and-a-service-to-civilization" some more!

"Observers worldwide have been expressing great pity for the people of Gaza [...] This pity may be a natural emotional reaction, yet it is unethical and immoral." - Adi Dvir, Ynetnews editor
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(07-Jun-2008 at 11:32)


Quote:
Ummm... Maybe the fact that they strap bombs to their chests
If they just want to die, then strapping a bomb to their chest doesn't make a great deal of sense, does it? Throwing themselves of a high building, or poisoning themselves, or an overdose of pills is much more convenient.

In contrast, strapping a bomb to themselves makes sense if they are willing to die to further their cause.


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Maybe it's because they were encouraged to do so from a very young age. They even have children's television shows telling them to do so.
Have you seen these programmes, or is it just something you have heard, and because the idea of Iranian state ideology training kids to be suicidal fits in with your demonisation of Islam you choose to believe it?

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#25  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 13:36)


Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Peppie: View Post
As for the bomb strapping, you'll notice that once "terrorists" acquire proper weaponry they stop resorting to suicide bombing.
Oh, you mean like, planes? Wait, nevermind. They still want to die. You people need to stop bitching about semantics. Suicide bombers first become willing and then decide they want to die, presumably for some sort of cause. They obviously know the consequences of their actions and they're not forced into it, so we must assume they want what they actively, willingly do.

A soldier fighting for an army is willing to die for his cause, because he faces those possible consequences. At no point does he suddenly go from willing to want. A suicide bomber WANTS to die for his cause, because the outcome of his actions is knowable and virtually guaranteed.

I suspect some of you are saying that suicide bombers are merely 'willing' to die because you want to glorify them, seeing that you support them and their cause and all...

Man is the only animal that blushes, or needs to.-- Mark Twain
#26  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 15:11)


Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Michael1: View Post
Oh, you mean like, planes? Wait, nevermind. They still want to die. You people need to stop bitching about semantics. Suicide bombers first become willing and then decide they want to die, presumably for some sort of cause. They obviously know the consequences of their actions and they're not forced into it, so we must assume they want what they actively, willingly do.

A soldier fighting for an army is willing to die for his cause, because he faces those possible consequences. At no point does he suddenly go from willing to want. A suicide bomber WANTS to die for his cause, because the outcome of his actions is knowable and virtually guaranteed.

I suspect some of you are saying that suicide bombers are merely 'willing' to die because you want to glorify them, seeing that you support them and their cause and all...
What about the Japanese kamikaze bombers? They were Shinto, and not even remotely like the folks in the Middle East now. But they did fight a more powerful foe. What about the Sicari? They were Jewish!! folks fighting the Roman Empire. What about the Tamil Tigers?

How often does Hezbollah use suicide bombers nowadays? They were among the first to start doing it again in 1982, when there was a massive criminal invasion by Israel, killing over 18,000 people. But now, they're more content firing crappy rockets.

I feel that the trend is that peoples in desperate situations take desperate measures. You may find that with the exception of the kamikazes, none of these examples are backed by a state with an involved official military.

Who are these suicide bombers? Some of them are well educated men, yes. Not all of them are poor. But they are never backed by a friendly active military. Also, a massive amount of suicide bombers are women facing extreme social rejection. Women don't expect 72 virgins. How do you explain away that? It gets kind of tough when the group isn't homogeneous, is it?

I dont support their actions but I do understand where theyre coming from. After all, in the case of the Middle East it's the USA that is occupying a number of them, keeping their states weak, murdering their kin, its leadership making frequent threats. On a massive scale, affecting millions of people. That's why suicide "terrorism" has flourished in Iraq. Never in the history of humanity has there been such a massive suicide campaign, and I believe it is proportional to the power difference between the foreign US invasion force and the Middle Eastern resistance fighters. And the urge to get the invading force out.

Suicide terrorists can come from many different religions, social backgrounds, and cultures. Gender doesn't matter. They've been with us cross-history, all over the planet. Clearly this is not something that is cultural and local, this is something universally human, and the capacity is in all of us. It becomes viable under certain conditions. So if you think it is such a problem, eliminate these conditions. By, for example, withdrawing from Iraq.

I got most of this stuff from this excellent, academic, empirically supported presentation: http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...50707010655272

"Observers worldwide have been expressing great pity for the people of Gaza [...] This pity may be a natural emotional reaction, yet it is unethical and immoral." - Adi Dvir, Ynetnews editor
#27  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 15:30)


Originally Posted by M1:
You people need to stop bitching about semantics. Suicide bombers first become willing and then decide they want to die, presumably for some sort of cause.
It is not semantics. Willing means they agree to die for their cause, they consent to do it. Want means they actively desire death.

As you are effectively saying that Iraq is full of suicidal maniacs who deserve to be cluster bombed then I suggest you actually do something to prove it, as simple common sense says they are not. If they just want to die there a much easier ways to achieve death - a point that you have avoided.

The willingness of a minority to die for glory, or financial rewards for their family, or idealism, or whatever reason makes them willing, does not justify the US using cluster bombs on civilians. That is really a despicable argument, and it doesn't surprise me that you pop up to support it.


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A soldier fighting for an army is willing to die for his cause, because he faces those possible consequences. At no point does he suddenly go from willing to want. A suicide bomber WANTS to die for his cause, because the outcome of his actions is knowable and virtually guaranteed.
Then the soldier who throws himself on a grenade must want death too, so why are they treated as heroes and given medals?

What about the first wave of soldiers up the D-Day beaches? They were walking into certain death. Or the first assault on Iwo jima - that too was almost certain death. Or how about the defenders of the Alamo, who knew that staying meant certain death? By your argument, they all wanted death and are therefore contemptible people.


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I suspect some of you are saying that suicide bombers are merely 'willing' to die because you want to glorify them, seeing that you support them and their cause and all...
If the USA were fighting off an invasion, would you be willing to die defending your country, or would you just stand around and let others do it all?


Originally Posted by Peppie:
As for the bomb strapping, you'll notice that once "terrorists" acquire proper weaponry they stop resorting to suicide bombing. When youre structurally oppressed by a superior, unyielding foe, resistance tends to take on non-conventional forms. That's the whole point of guerrilla warfare, is it not?
Absolutely right. It appears that M1 and Blind Seer know nothing about fighting an asymmetrical war.

In an asymmetric war, when the defender is the weaker party, suicide missions are not uncommon but they rarely occur in any other circumstance. Statistically, 95% of suicide bombings occur when the weak party is trying to force a strong occupier to withdraw - according to Robert Pape. The motivation is not a suicidal desire to die, it is idealism, rage against a perceived injustice, supported by religious overtones.

Tactically it is very effective, and can achieve a kill ration of 100:1 or more - very useful for the weak party in an asymmetric war.

The other feature of an asymmetric war is that when the aggressor is the strong party, the aggressor typically brands the weaker opponents as terrorists, or in earlier times bandits.

This is what the US is doing now in Iraq and Afghanistan, and Israel is doing in Palestine, and Russia is doing in Chechnaya etc., and China is doing in Tibet. It is no coincidence that all these countries, who are all the aggressors in an asymmetric conflict, also want to be allowed to cluster bomb their weak opponents.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
#28  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 16:17)


Originally Posted by Michael1:
A soldier fighting for an army is willing to die for his cause, because he faces those possible consequences. At no point does he suddenly go from willing to want. A suicide bomber WANTS to die for his cause, because the outcome of his actions is knowable and virtually guaranteed.
I think a suicide bomber is willing to die for his cause, but there is no direct evidence he is overjoyed at dieing for his cause. There are many reasons why a person would commit suicide, and many reasons why people would feel they are justified in taking others with them. You appear to see a suicide bombers in a very simple context of a religious ideologue, whereas it is quite probable that religion plays only a very small part of the nature of the bomber, and social, personal and economic inequities plays a much larger part. It also must be said that suicide bombers are NOT a great proportion of the populations of these countries, statistically speaking they are a very tiny minority, and should not be used to demonise an entire nation.

Too often we accept a simple or non complex explanation for the actions of those who oppose our views, when the actual reasons are far more complex and based on far greater events than religious belief or indoctrination. This attitude provides great propaganda potential for occupation forces to show the inhumanity of those that would use suicide bombers unless further study is undertaken.

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Oh, you mean like, planes? Wait, nevermind. They still want to die. You people need to stop bitching about semantics. Suicide bombers first become willing and then decide they want to die, presumably for some sort of cause. They obviously know the consequences of their actions and they're not forced into it, so we must assume they want what they actively, willingly do.
As said above, they are extremely small portion of the population that resorts to these tactics. It is highly likely, and I have seen reports tieing suicide bombers to personal tragedy and a desire for revenge, that they have become enraged over actions of the occupation, either perceived or imagined, and that they simply desire to strike back.

You seem to think that the willingness to die evolves from no other cause but religious. Nothing could be farther from the truth, for only the most lunatic would commit suicide for no reason other than desire to enter Heaven. Look at other causes for despair and revenge, and get beyond the religious aspects. Now, reports continue in certain Arab press that many remote controlled suicide bombs were rigged by other nations to create instability in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is possible that to a certain degree terrorist groups use unwitting people to carry out attacks, although this is not supported or suggested by any official report, but makes as much sense as US or UK involvement in suicide attacks. Discussion of suicide bombers depends on looking beyond the rhetoric of all political groups, and needs to look at the why of taking one's life.

Would there be suicide bombers if the occupation soldiers weren't there? It is impossible to say, but I have seen nothing to suggest Saddam had a serious problem with them.

(and don't make the claim Saddam was a brutal dictator as once your dead a brutal dictator won't matter.)

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I suspect some of you are saying that suicide bombers are merely 'willing' to die because you want to glorify them, seeing that you support them and their cause and all...



Some of us are obviously more interested in the reasons why a person would commit suicide in this manner than either you or your administration are. To simply say they are evil and want to enter Heaven is perhaps enough to convince you they are religious fanatics, but more logical people are willing to look into what has driven them to this action, and why they are taking this step. If it is simply a religious fervor, considering the size and (supposed) religious fanaticism of the people, why aren't a greater per cent of the population actively engaging in these attacks, as they are effective and far cheaper in turns of net results than other forms of weaponry.

Saying that we are 'glorifying' the suicide bomber by trying to gain honest accessment of why he does this, and what drives him, and what characteristics may identify the personality of him, is dishonest. Do you say that the doctor who studies murder suspects or paedophiles is 'glorifying them?

You obviously feel suicide bombers have only a religious persona, that other factors do not play a factor in their actions. Studies would suggest that while there are religious extremists who do think this way, many bombers have personal and mental and emotional problems that outweigh religious convictions.

Originally Posted by Blind Seer:
More courtesy than if it were the other way around, I assure you. Personally, I'd consider hospitals pretty much off-limits, but alas, I am not the one who makes those decisions.
I take it you do not support the bombing of Hospitals during the Lebanon/ Israel conflict, or the attacks on ambulances in Palestine either? Or the restriction on power to hospitals in Gaza, or transfer of critically ill patients in Gaza to hospitals in other areas?

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Why not? They all want to die and be martyrs, right?
While I realise that it is a tongue in cheek comment there are a sizable number of people that seem to believe this. If this was actually true, would there not be a greater number of attacks than we are seeing?

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Yes, however as I've stated in my previous post, if the extremists would not show civilian establishments (schools, churches, Synagogues) the same courtesy that we do for theirs. They would burn them down, along with whomever is in there regardless.
There were stories circulating during the Iraq invasion of Kuwait that Iraqi soldiers were destroying babies in the incubators of Kuwaiti hospitals. These stories were fabricated and proved false after the war, but they definitely served the purpose of demonising the Iraqi's. Do not believe all you read and see in 'official' reports.

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understand what you're trying to get at. However, I will play devil's advocate and say you must also use the same logic that if extremists invaded USA or UK (or whomever), do you think that they give a shit whether they kill men, women, or children? Do you think they give a shit when they strap a bomb to their chests and blow themselves up in a crowded marketplace? They think they are going to Heaven and everyone they've killed is going to hell. Man, woman, and child.
During the actual invasion, they may not be overly concerned about civilian casualties, but once they have occupied the country, they will be less willing to conduct operations that will simply create opposition to their forces. Targetting the population indiscriminately will simply cause a greater amount of the population desiring to oppose the occupation. Most logical military leaders will attempt to do what has been (partially) done in Iraq or Afghanistan, replace the government with a more acceptable one, try to mollify the population through basic economic means, provide security and protection to the segments of the population at risk, and provide reports of how much better life is now than before the invasion.

Now whether they give a shit about blowing up a market in Iraq, as opposed to occupying the Us or UK or any other country; these are two completely different thoughts, and rely on different tactics and strategies. Occupation relies to a great degree on lessening resistance to the forces, while driving out occupation relies on inflaming hatred towards occupation forces.

Originally Posted by RA3:
Not to mention you increase the chances that badguys will exploit such weaknesses creating even more potential for civilian death.
It also shows that occupation forces are willing to respect certain aspects of the occupied country, and will lessen resistance to some of the occupation. This is what has happened in Anbar, AQI became too violent and extremist for the Sunni peoples, and they formed Councils to break the influence of the AQ; after the Councils began their campaign against AlQuada they allied with the occupation forces to remove a common enemy.

Using tactics that are against the sensibilities of the population, like insurgents attacking out of a mosque, could well have the effect of creating disfavor from the general population, especially if occupation forces show proper concern for the significance of these establishments, and not willfully cause damage to it. The population may recognise the willingness of the occupation to refrain from causing damage, and notice the insurgents do not.

As occupations by definition are viewed in a poor light, any action that provides beneficial propaganda should be exploited, if not to lessen attacks but to provide a concensus of apathy towards it.
Sometimes inaction has far greater purpose than action has.

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So you think less than 5500 badguys have been killed by cluster bombs? Or 13,306 wounded?
Problem with cluster bombs is the potential for injury to innocents long after the conflict is over. UN forces have spent many months cleaning up the cluster bombs dropped on Lebanon during the latest hostilities, and there is still the fear that unexploded bombs could maim and injury the innocents. Reports I have read suggest the primary victims in these events are children who do not recognise the dangers of these items, and through investigation or play, accidentally trigger the explosion. While you may not feel 5500 is a great number of dead, it is a far higher number than used to justify the Afghanistan invasion and occupation. I guess it depends more on the nationality of the victims than the numbers, right?

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Areas populated by enemy troop concentrations yes.
The Geneva Convention does not allow the use of anti personnel weapons to be used in civilian areas, and they do not recognise the mere presence of enemy troops in the civilian areas as sufficient reason to classify them as a military target. In some cases cluster bombs have been dropped in areas where large groups of civilians are present, without military presence.

Again, much of the claims of the military that cluster bombs were only used on military targets has not been substantiated either by military records or by personal observation. There have been reports by peope in areas where these bombs were used that suggest they were purposely and deliberately used against civilian targets.

Irregardless, other countries and groups that are able to procure these munitions may not be as willing to follow rules of conflict and may be willing to target exclusive civilian infrastructure with them.

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It's our right to do what is specified in our agreements. They can revoke permission and we would have the right to defend our continued occupation of the bases depending on the specifications in the treaty. Of course, in all such situations we would probably withdraw and seek less violent punishments for the offending ally.
At what point has any nation given up it's sovereignty and ability to govern itself to the US? You are terribly stupid or unbelievably arrogant to suggest no nation has the right to rescind a agreement that does not work in the best interests of the host country. Suggesting that the US would punitively punish countries for following policies that they desire,and in their best interests, is unblievably imperialistic, but understandable if these stories are to be believed:
http://www.counterpunch.org/patrick06062008.html

http://www.counterpunch.org/patrick06052008.html

“The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.”
#29  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 16:30)
Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Blind Seer: View Post
More courtesy than if it were the other way around, I assure you.
What makes you think anyone cares about your word for what would happen in a hypothetical conflict none of us has any idea about?
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Personally, I'd consider hospitals pretty much off-limits, but alas, I am not the one who makes those decisions.
We aren't discussing your actions or lack thereof. We are discussing how the US military acts.
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Ummm... Maybe the fact that they strap bombs to their chests. Maybe it's because they were encouraged to do so from a very young age. They even have children's television shows telling them to do so.
I thought we were discussing Iraq here. There had as far as I know never been a single suicide bombing in Iraq before the US invasion.
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(07-Jun-2008 at 18:03)


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I take it you do not support the bombing of Hospitals during the Lebanon/ Israel conflict, or the attacks on ambulances in Palestine either? Or the restriction on power to hospitals in Gaza, or transfer of critically ill patients in Gaza to hospitals in other areas?
No I do not. The people are sick and/or the injured from previous fighting. Targeting them is dishonorable and neither side should target the sick or wounded. Targeting unarmed civilians is dishonorable and should be looked down upon.

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In the aftermath of the Feb. 1 bombings — the most devastating attacks in Baghdad since summer — Iraqi officials said that the women had Down syndrome, a genetic disorder. They based their opinion partly on the appearance of the remains of the women, whose heads, as often happens in suicide bombings, were severed by the blasts.
Well gee, if anyone's head were blown off from a blast like that, I'm sure they'd look the same way.

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Worries about insurgents using mentally disabled people as bombers prompted the Iraqi government’s decision this week to begin enforcing a Saddam Hussein-era law to round up beggars and the mentally disabled. Iraqi officials said the mentally disabled would be sent to hospitals while beggars would be taken to the police, foster homes, juvenile institutions or their families.
You know, it's really such a shame that it took something such as this to occur for those people to get the help they desperately needed.

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Psychiatric case files of two female suicide bombers who killed nearly 100 people in Baghdad this month show that they suffered from depression and schizophrenia but do not contain information indicating they had Down syndrome, American officials said Wednesday.
I wonder how many of those were troops. I'd wager not many.

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Suicide terrorists can come from many different religions, social backgrounds, and cultures. Gender doesn't matter. They've been with us cross-history, all over the planet. Clearly this is not something that is cultural and local, this is something universally human, and the capacity is in all of us. It becomes viable under certain conditions. So if you think it is such a problem, eliminate these conditions. By, for example, withdrawing from Iraq.
While I understand that suicidal terrorism can come from all walks of life, there is still something that bothers me. If you think back to September 11, 2001, there were no US occupational forces in the Middle East, yet Al-Quieda took the initiative and attacked civilians. Yes, civilians. If you think withdrawing from Iraq is going to assuage some of the hard feelings, you're right...to some degree. However it would be far from enough...

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Who are these suicide bombers? Some of them are well educated men, yes. Not all of them are poor. But they are never backed by a friendly active military. Also, a massive amount of suicide bombers are women facing extreme social rejection. Women don't expect 72 virgins. How do you explain away that? It gets kind of tough when the group isn't homogeneous, is it?
Actually no, it doesn't. These people are taught that dying for their cause will make them martyrs and they will go to Heaven. This includes both man and women. Men just have more incentive to do so because of the "72 virgins". To them, there is no greater reward than spending eternity in Heaven.

Refusal to comprimise only succeeds in driving the devil's bargain. However, when one comprimises one's morals, they become the devil's bargain.
#31  
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(07-Jun-2008 at 18:20)
Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Blind Seer: View Post
You know, it's really such a shame that it took something such as this to occur for those people to get the help they desperately needed.
It is also ironic that it was a law from Saddam Hussein's era. The bloodthirsty dictator who supposedly cared nothing about his own people.
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I wonder how many of those were troops. I'd wager not many.
There is a civil war going on as well as the fight against the occupants, and civil wars tend to be extra ruthless with less distinction between civilians and military.
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While I understand that suicidal terrorism can come from all walks of life, there is still something that bothers me. If you think back to September 11, 2001, there were no US occupational forces in the Middle East, yet Al-Quieda took the initiative and attacked civilians.
To AQ the US forces in Saudi Arabia, the center of Islam, is an occupation force. Given how much support USA has given the Saudi regime this charge isn't totally unjustified. The attacks on 9/11 were directed at US financial, military and (presumably) political centers, not just civilians at random. USA has attacked worse targets than that for no better reason. (The Al Shifa pharmaceutical factory comes to mind)
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If you think withdrawing from Iraq is going to assuage some of the hard feelings, you're right...to some degree. However it would be far from enough...
Obviously it will take time. Many of those who already are extremists likely won't quit no matter what, but recruitment will be harder with no US presence to inflame feelings. That USA just continued to use Abu Ghraib as during the era of Saddam after "liberating" the country certainly didn't help its reputation.
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Actually no, it doesn't. These people are taught that dying for their cause will make them martyrs and they will go to Heaven.
How many American soldiers do you think are told the same?
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(07-Jun-2008 at 20:35)


Originally Posted by Blind Seer:
Well gee, if anyone's head were blown off from a blast like that, I'm sure they'd look the same way.
Which raises the question of why there was the report released that they had Down's Syndrome, when it was based only on the appeareance of the head?

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Actually no, it doesn't. These people are taught that dying for their cause will make them martyrs and they will go to Heaven.
You are ignoring that in countries where Christianity is the dominant religion, and even among the followers of Christianity, suicide is not unknown, even though it is considered a mortal sin. There are a thousand reasons beyond religious fervor that would cause a person to suicide bomb. The supposed rewards are likely not a deterrent to killing yourself, but I hesitate to subscribe to the view that is a dominant factor in the decision to taking of your own life.

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Men just have more incentive to do so because of the "72 virgins". To them, there is no greater reward than spending eternity in Heaven.
Do not faithful Muslims also go to Heaven?

I would think that suicide bombers are willing to die, the aspect of a perhaps reward by doing so makes it more acceptable, but does not encourage the behavior.

It likely comes down to terrorist groups finding people of a nature that are suicidal and ready to kill themselves, and indoctrinating them into attacking others, and supplying them with bombs. Regardless, we still need a reason beyond simple religious belief to create the personality of a suicide bomber.

“The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.”
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(07-Jun-2008 at 20:52)


Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Peppie: View Post
What about the Japanese kamikaze bombers? They were Shinto, and not even remotely like the folks in the Middle East now. But they did fight a more powerful foe. What about the Sicari? They were Jewish!! folks fighting the Roman Empire. What about the Tamil Tigers?
Alright, I stand corrected. Some soliders have been encouraged into suicide missions. They too, at some point decided they wanted to die, or in some cases they may have actually been forced into it.

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How often does Hezbollah use suicide bombers nowadays? They were among the first to start doing it again in 1982, when there was a massive criminal invasion by Israel, killing over 18,000 people. But now, they're more content firing crappy rockets.
Those rockets might not be so crappy. They're good enough for Syria and Iran. Might it be that years of suicide bombing got them no where, so the propaganda is now falling on deaf ears?

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I dont support their actions but I do understand where theyre coming from.
I don't. Suicide doesn't solve any of my problems, it just causes more problems for others.

Originally Posted by VoR:
If they just want to die there a much easier ways to achieve death - a point that you have avoided.
I just thought it was a stupid point, dumb enough to ignore. Obviously if the onlything they wanted was to die there would be easier ways to achieve it. I never said they hadn't been brainwashed into believing that their death would also help a cause.

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Then the soldier who throws himself on a grenade must want death too, so why are they treated as heroes and given medals?
Don't be a jackass. Would he have thrown himself on the grenade if no one else was around or would he have dived for cover?
While he doesn't want death, he is willing to sacrifice himself in order to protect others. It doesn't surprise me that this is a notion you can't comprehend. They give him medals and treat him like a hero because sacrificed his own life in order to save others. This is the exact opposite of what the suicide bomber does. I can't believe you would start comparing true heroes with suicide bombers. Perhaps suicide bombers are your true heroes. That would explain it all.

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What about the first wave of soldiers up the D-Day beaches? They were walking into certain death. Or the first assault on Iwo jima - that too was almost certain death. Or how about the defenders of the Alamo, who knew that staying meant certain death? By your argument, they all wanted death and are therefore contemptible people.
None of them wanted to die, and I never stated that wanting death made someone a contemtible person. You as usual, assume things and attempt to tell other people lie about what I think and type.

Originally Posted by filcher:
I think a suicide bomber is willing to die for his cause, but there is no direct evidence he is overjoyed at dieing for his cause.
Did I make that claim?
Quote:
There are many reasons why a person would commit suicide, and many reasons why people would feel they are justified in taking others with them. You appear to see a suicide bombers in a very simple context of a religious ideologue, whereas it is quite probable that religion plays only a very small part of the nature of the bomber, and social, personal and economic inequities plays a much larger part.
Where did I give you the impression that I saw suicide bombers in 'a very simple context of a religious ideologue'? Of course they can have any number of justifications but there's certainly someone feeding them propaganda (be it of a religious nature or not). Suicide bombers don't really act alone, do they?

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It also must be said that suicide bombers are NOT a great proportion of the populations of these countries, statistically speaking they are a very tiny minority, and should not be used to demonise an entire nation.
Who's doing that? I do however, think that when organization such as Hezzbollah and Al Qaeda take credit for suicide bomb attacks that the attacks can rightly be used to demonize those organizations, don't you?

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Too often we accept a simple or non complex explanation for the actions of those who oppose our views, when the actual reasons are far more complex and based on far greater events than religious belief or indoctrination.
I think that too often some people confuse 'understanding' with 'sypathizing'. Don't assume I don't understand the complexity of their situations, and that if only I did I too would be sympathetic. Even if I were 100% empathetic with them I wouldn't be sympathetic toward them. I understood why Nazism rose in Germany but I'm not a Nazi sympathizer.

Originally Posted by Bernel:
How many American soldiers do you think are told the same?
It's possible some of the mothers might teach their sons that, but but I would think that would be a very, very few. Who or what organization are you implying teaches American soldiers that by dying for their cause they will become martyrs and will go to heaven? I think you've fallen off the deep end...

Man is the only animal that blushes, or needs to.-- Mark Twain

Last edited by Michael1, 07-Jun-2008 at 20:53.
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(07-Jun-2008 at 21:52)


Originally Posted by Michael1:
Did I make that claim?
To your credit, no. I was responding not only to you, but also to the ones that have made the claim suicide bombers are created from religious zeal. There are other factors at work in creating a suicide bomber, and many of the terrorist groups look for these factors.

As this article from CNN makes clear, religious fervor is only part of what the terrorists look for:
Originally Posted by CNN:
Intelligence gathered from detainees indicates that al Qaeda in Iraq is looking for women with three main characteristics: those who are illiterate, are deeply religious or have financial struggles because most likely they've lost the male head of the household.

"They are also looking for someone who is young," Hertling said. "They will bypass an older widow."

Sheikh Adel Fahdawi, a Sunni leader, added, "If the woman's psychological state is bad, they try to lure her with the illusions that she will be going to heaven. ... All of them come from the families of terrorists, and they are being recruited and pressured."
Quote:
I think that too often some people confuse 'understanding' with 'sypathizing'. Don't assume I don't understand the complexity of their situations, and that if only I did I too would be sympathetic. Even if I were 100% empathetic with them I wouldn't be sympathetic toward them. I understood why Nazism rose in Germany but I'm not a Nazi sympathizer
To suggest that understanding the reason why suicide bombings are used is tantamount to support, or sympathising, of them is ludicrous. I do not support the targetting of any civilian in any war, whether by military or by terror group. However, in terms of fighting a military force, or even of attempting to create political change, I can see where the effects of suicide bombingsd would be considered a useful weapon to the groups involved. To ignore the causes, and effects of suicide bombing, does not provide answers to how to best fight it.

That said, I could draw parallels between the actions of suicide bombers who target nearby people, and the actions of those who drop bombs on civilian infrastructure, or artillery shell them, without actually knowing what the target is. Neither group is morally correct, it is just that in some mind's the words military provides a balm to the conscience.

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Who's doing that? I do however, think that when organization such as Hezzbollah and Al Qaeda take credit for suicide bomb attacks that the attacks can rightly be used to demonize those organizations, don't you?
Demonise the organizations all you want, not the general populations. The fact is your nation led an invasion of Afghanistan because of the actions of a minority of people who were suicide bombers. Do you not feel this was a demonisation of the people of Afghanistan, and the Muslims in particular?

“The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread.”
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(07-Jun-2008 at 22:54)


Quote:
To AQ the US forces in Saudi Arabia, the center of Islam, is an occupation force. Given how much support USA has given the Saudi regime this charge isn't totally unjustified. The attacks on 9/11 were directed at US financial, military and (presumably) political centers, not just civilians at random. USA has attacked worse targets than that for no better reason. (The Al Shifa pharmaceutical factory comes to mind)
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There is a civil war going on as well as the fight against the occupants, and civil wars tend to be extra ruthless with less distinction between civilians and military.
I think you and I can agree that this war has cost both sides many lives, both military and civilian. This begs the question- When will it be enough? I think that there should be a special squad sent out to search for the unexploded cluster bombs. That way, there'd be less chance for curious people to get hurt from messing with them.

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There is a civil war going on as well as the fight against the occupants, and civil wars tend to be extra ruthless with less distinction between civilians and military.
The sad part about that is that sometimes that very "balm" either takes their very guilt away, or numbs their conscience altogether. My uncle was in Vietnam, and my father told me how he changed after he came back. I can only imagine what goes through their minds out there...

Refusal to comprimise only succeeds in driving the devil's bargain. However, when one comprimises one's morals, they become the devil's bargain.

Last edited by Blind Seer, 07-Jun-2008 at 23:03.
Edit reason: Added another couple thoughts.
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(07-Jun-2008 at 23:08)
Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Michael1: View Post
Alright, I stand corrected. Some soliders have been encouraged into suicide missions. They too, at some point decided they wanted to die, or in some cases they may have actually been forced into it.
"Want" is the wrong word. They just think the goal is worth the price.
Quote:
Those rockets might not be so crappy. They're good enough for Syria and Iran. Might it be that years of suicide bombing got them no where, so the propaganda is now falling on deaf ears?
Hezbollah drove Israel out of Southern Lebanon, which is one of very few victories Arabs has had against Israel. With no Israeli troops in Lebanon they have neither opportunity nor reason for suicide bombings.
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Don't be a jackass. Would he have thrown himself on the grenade if no one else was around or would he have dived for cover?
Would a suicide bomber blow himself up if no one else is around?
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They give him medals and treat him like a hero because sacrificed his own life in order to save others. This is the exact opposite of what the suicide bomber does.
Soldiers get medals for killing enemies too. You can even get a medal for killing civilians (The crew of USS Cole after shooting down an Iranian Airbus)
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Who's doing that? I do however, think that when organization such as Hezzbollah and Al Qaeda take credit for suicide bomb attacks that the attacks can rightly be used to demonize those organizations, don't you?
The target is a lot more relevant than the means of delivery.
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(08-Jun-2008 at 07:16)


Quote:
I never said they hadn't been brainwashed into believing that their death would also help a cause.
Which is what I said: they are dying for their cause. Just like the military heroes who get medals.


Quote:
Would he have thrown himself on the grenade if no one else was around or would he have dived for cover?
While he doesn't want death, he is willing to sacrifice himself in order to protect others.
Does a suicide bomber blow himself up alone? While he doesn't want death, he is willing to sacrifice himself to protect others by inflicting damage on the enemy.


Quote:
This is the exact opposite of what the suicide bomber does.
Not at all. The guy on the grenade is protecting the people around him, the suicide bomber is protecting his country.

More to the point, militaries give medals for killing the enemy. They even give medals for killing enemy civilians. In what way is that the opposite of what a suicide bomber is doing?


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I can't believe you would start comparing true heroes with suicide bombers.
'True heroes' in your opinion. Intelligent people understand that opinions are not 'true' facts.


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None of them wanted to die...
It is only your opinion that suicide bombers want to die


Quote:
...I never stated that wanting death made someone a contemtible person. You as usual, assume things and attempt to tell other people lie about what I think and type.
"A soldier fighting for an army is willing to die for his cause, because he faces those possible consequences. At no point does he suddenly go from willing to want. A suicide bomber WANTS to die for his cause, because the outcome of his actions is knowable and virtually guaranteed."

So now you are saying that wanting to die is okay? So suicide bombers are no longer contemptible - in your opinion?


Quote:
Did I make that claim?
Do you know what 'want' means? Overjoyed maybe an exaggeration, but 'want' does house the idea that death is desired. You defend that by saying that walking into certain death proves want, but that would apply equally to many of your military heroes - suicide missions are not unique to Islam.


Quote:
Who's doing that? I do however, think that when organization such as Hezzbollah and Al Qaeda take credit for suicide bomb attacks that the attacks can rightly be used to demonize those organizations, don't you?
You and Blind Seer appear to be doing that, by using suicide bombers to justify cluster bombing civilians

'I will play devil's advocate and say you must also use the same logic that if extremists invaded USA or UK (or whomever), do you think that they give a shit whether they kill men, women, or children? Do you think they give a shit when they strap a bomb to their chests and blow themselves up in a crowded marketplace? They think they are going to Heaven and everyone they've killed is going to hell. Man, woman, and child.'

As for demonising AQ or whoever, yes, they should be demonised. The difference between us is that I think ANY organisation that kills innocent civilians should be demonised - and that includes national militaries. It especially includes those national militaries unwilling to ban cluster bombs that are known to kill civilians. Top of the list are those that kill civilians, are unwilling to ban weapons that kill a lot of civilians, and go around starting wars of aggression that kill many civilians.

Personally, based purely on the numbers of civilians killed, I think the US and Israeli militaries that cluster bomb civilians are far worse, far more worthy of demonisation, than those resorting to suicide bombers.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
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Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Voice of Reason: View Post
Which is what I said: they are dying for their cause. Just like the military heroes who get medals.
I find it less than amazing that both you and Bernel find saving the lives of fellow soldiers fighting for democratic freedom is equal to taking the lives of those who live in democratic freedom.

You're both equally fucked up. Neither of you have an ounce of morality. You both rail against religion in general, but excuse it when it's used to extreme. You both rail against restrictions on personal freedom in Western nations, but endorse religious and cultural restrictions when they are waged from without. You both pretend to love and embrace and even force upon everyone in the West one set of rules, but you endorse and defend the opposite set of rules for those you would make out to be 'equals'.

Here's the reality: You can't expect to enforce your naive secularist, socialist society on everyone in Western, modernized countries while excusing and endorsing the opposite everywhere else. The rest of us are tired of playing your schoolyard games.

Man is the only animal that blushes, or needs to.-- Mark Twain
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(09-Jun-2008 at 03:56)


Re: Cluster Bomb Treaty: USA is out of step with the world again...

Originally Posted by Michael1: View Post
I find it less than amazing that both you and Bernel find saving the lives of fellow soldiers fighting for democratic freedom is equal to taking the lives of those who live in democratic freedom.

You're both equally fucked up. Neither of you have an ounce of morality. You both rail against religion in general, but excuse it when it's used to extreme. You both rail against restrictions on personal freedom in Western nations, but endorse religious and cultural restrictions when they are waged from without. You both pretend to love and embrace and even force upon everyone in the West one set of rules, but you endorse and defend the opposite set of rules for those you would make out to be 'equals'.

Here's the reality: You can't expect to enforce your naive secularist, socialist society on everyone in Western, modernized countries while excusing and endorsing the opposite everywhere else. The rest of us are tired of playing your schoolyard games.
Congratulations, and entire post dedicated to attacking other posters. I am sure you will get absolutely no warning points though. Only perceived left-wing posters get those, proved by the last time you told me to fuck off and got no points. Is it any wonder UT is dying with such a biased mod mafia?

As mentioned earlier, and ignored by you, the captain of the USS Vincennes who shot down an airliner full of civilians was given a medal - how is that different from a suicide bomber? How is that defending democracy? How is that saving lives? Handing out medals for killing people is routine, so your entire argument that military heroes save lives is bullshit.

You also contradict yourself. Israel and the US cluster bombing civilians is not saving lives, nor defending democracy. It is just killing civilians - so why do you support it? Why do you want the US to retain cluster bombs so they can continue to kill civilians while the rest of the world is banning them? In what way, exactly, is your endorsement of killing civilians different to the suicide bomber?

Come on M1, be a man. Prove that you have the brains to put together a coherent argument for once in your life.

"Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel." But let it be considered that he did not mean a real and generous love of our country, but that pretended patriotism which so many, in all ages and countries, have made a cloak of self- interest.
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