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Total number of comments: 79 (since 2013-11-28 14:42:57)

dmoloney

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  • As Israeli Vigilantes pursue revenge killing of Palestinian Children, Troops Go on Unlawful Rampage
  • In the Deaths of 3 Israeli Teens, Likud Policies are also Implicated
    • >There is ALWAYS a bigger bully with a bigger hammer.

      In the region turkey is stronger, but do you really think turkey is going to fight some war to actually end israels existence? This for turkey would cost a very high price.

      >- EVERY military that has ever existed eventually has suffered massive, humiliating DEFEAT and the IDF will NOT be the exception. Eventually the IDF will be defeated, then what will be left of Israel.

      This happened at the end of the lebanon war, israel didnt cease to exist.

      >Thousands of inexpensive, reasonably accurate missiles trump a single very, very expensive aircraft.

      So far in current conflicts ground forces by themselves have been unable to disable the airforce of their opponents without the use of an airforce themselves.

      Syrians for example have had great difficulty coping with assads air force.

  • Top 5 Reasons US Aid to "Moderate" Syrian Fighters is Quixotic
    • @jtmcphee

      >a couple of quick reportorial write-ups among many, showing that maybe “we” are filling the battlespace with more nice weapons for the “moderates”

      No one here has suggested that the us has not given weapons to the syrian opposition, please dont use strawman tactics.

      >“Bosnia was, er, ah, messy,” and intervention by Imperial arms at some point did what, again?

      As pointed out the intervention played a part in lifting the siege of sarajevo and forced bosian serb forces to return to the negotiation table which helped to bring an end to the conflict.

      >Got any “interventions” that have been, by your lights, equally “successful?”

      Kosovo, overthrow of the taliban (which polls show most afghans support), irans support of hezbollah.

      By what criteria do you claim “success?” And how do all those “interventions,”

      If stated goals are achieved, if the situation improves for most people on the ground, if most people on the ground see the intervention as being right.

      >that bland medical-sounding term for profitable armed violence

      It isnt a term for that, consult a dictionary if you feel otherwise.

      >As I said, the burden of proof is on proponents of “intervention”

      No, its on both sides, if one feels an intervention made things worse, evidence must be presented, if one feels it made things better, evidence must be presented. One side does not get a free pass.

    • @jtmmcphee

      You seem to be making the same error you made in the past, you make grand statements and apply the same opinions to various events which are quite different to one another.

      Again this is done for it is easier than performing a detailed analysis on the differences between the various outcomes and situations..

    • >which showed that the majority of the Syrians voted for Bashar Assad.

      They only took place in a minority of syria and only assad and those vetted by his government were allowed to run.

  • The seven people who need to STFU about Iraq right now
    • >Well, no harm no foul ?

      No one claimed that, least of all sullivan.

    • >who has devoted any number of column inches lately to slamming the NeoCons and the war “they” advocated for.

      Andrew is very open about the fact that "he" was for the war too and that he was wrong to back an incompetent like bush.

      I really dont see why he has to "shut the fuck up", he erred and is man enough to admit it, this shows that he has some critical self thought and therefore his opinions should be noted.

  • Iraq: Looming War of Shiite, Kurdish, Extremist-Sunni Militias
    • How strong is the iraqi army now compared to its state just before the 03 invasion?

  • Did a Karzai No-Show Spoil Obama's announcement of end of Afghanistan War?
    • >but some basic repeating forms are very visible.

      Again, just because you see some vague similarities does not mean that these two are the same.

      The truth is that even events with many similarities will have major different variables that come into play.

      The nitty gritty details matter. But this is often ignored so that idealogical viewpoints are not affected.

      >I can pretty well bet that you don’t know it all either, given the infinite complexity of the Great Game

      I do my best to put aside certain biases and attempt to look at the evidence before forming an overall opinion.

      For example if a war occurs ill try to look at the available data (public opinion polls for example) to see its effects on the people on the ground before i consider it to be just or not, while also noting that such facts can change.

      >as far as I can tell, you have no prescription for any kind of better world than “just let the fellows get on with it.”

      If you think that then its more poor analysis on your part.

      >whether you speak for yourself or out of some interested entity

      You can rest easy, i speak for myself.

      >“ad hom”

      Criticising some-ones viewpoints and their prose cannot be considered ad hominem.

      Your posts are genuinely poorly written.

      We're not writing thesis papers but some attempt to write in a more coherent fashion would be appreciated.

      >for not addressing the supposed differences, other than that the French wanted to “hang on to Indochina”

      What do you mean "besides". The fact that france wanted to keep vietnam as a colony is a major difference between the two situations.

      >now we are supposed to believe that the Administration is “serious”

      Your logic is messy. Youre claiming that because the us backed france in the 40's-50's, in order to help gain france as an anti-soviet ally, it then means that obama and biden secretly want to maintain a costly presence in afghanistan?

      One such fact does not lead to such a conclusion.

      >as a former attorney

      Sure, a former attorney who doesnt know what an ad hom is.

      >though I bet you also hold that ISI is right over the horizon, of course.

      Its a bet you'd lose. Why would i consider an iraqi based group to be over the horizon when there quite some distance from afghanistan?

      They would even have to travel through iran which is very hostile to isi.

      >your deep wisdom or special information that “we,” or some part of “we,” will have to continue to “support” the “afghan forces for quite some [unspecified] time.”

      Its hardly special information, the chicago summit showed that aid would continue to flow at least until 2024.

      >But a former US administration

      You didnt actually counter my statements, you just once more compared two different situations and basically declared them to be the same, so that if one is wrong, ergo, the other is too.

      A more detailed look would show that the two conflicts are very different. Variables matter when forming a viewpoint. The causes of the two wars and the reasons for us involvement being major factors.

      Also polling shows that taliban forces overall have very little support whereas if elections were allowed to prevail in vietnam the communist side likely would have come to power.

      One conflict resulted in excess death and chaos, afghanistan has been poorly handled but polls since 2001 have shown that afghans still prefer the post taliban rule era.

      >if you have any kind of vested interest in the power-and-wealth flux in the Game play, momentum and inertia are all on your side

      How wise and cynical of you. Of course in reality the war winding down will mean less wealth for certain groups who did finanacially benefit from it.

    • I see that my request for you to work on your awful prose went out the window.

      Anyway you seem to comparing vastly different things just because you feel that they are some vague similarities.

      Similarities arent enough to declare two things to be the same, people have to get down to the little details to get a proper view of things. This often requires a lot of work which some people arent fond of, so they just make declarations about the situation based on their idealogical point of view.

      Any historian worth his salt will show that France was very serious about maintaining its presence in indochina and keeping it as a colony, whereas the us admin would unquestionably prefer for afghanistan to be able to stand on its own two feet so that the costly us war there could be brought to a close.

      As for afghan security it will likely be quite some time before afghan forces can stand by themselves without foreign support, however this does not mean that they will need on the ground forces alongside them. And due to the lack of support for the taliban from the afghan public a taliban re-turn to power is unlikely.

      You are trying to portray yourself as some cynical fellow calling things out for what they are, in reality you seem to have a very myopic view of current events and history.

      You fail to take into account the complexity of situations and of how multiple factors and motivations come into play

      And it seems that you try to partially hide this fact by posting long rambling comments with an excessive amount of quotation marks that offer very little true insight or depth.

    • >What are The Troops doing there, anyway?

      Engaging in efforts to both weaken the taliban and to develop afghan security forces.

      >“we” are of the Afghanis that for (top secret) geopolitical reasons

      Its hardly top secret, the forces are remaining for a brief time for a sudden pull out would put the afghan forces under significant immediate strain which many feel that they would not be well prepared for.

      >Well now, since that “ambush” part is INEVITABLE, would it be fair to speculate that that’s part of the design, not a fly in the ointment?

      Unlikely, its clear that the admin wants out of afghanistan as soon as possible whilst attempting to make sure the afghan government is capable of defending itself at a sufficient manner.

      Ps: Any chance you can work on your awful prose.

  • Condoleezza Rice, Charged with War Crimes at Rutgers, withdraws as Commencement Speaker
    • >in fact both Afghanistan and Lybia are two examples of where such interventions made things much worse, especially for the local population.

      Polling evidence from both countries has shown the opposite.

  • Top 7 Surprising pieces of Good news in Afghanistan Presidential Election
    • A successful election is worth celebrating, the fact that foreign forces are present does not change that, such forces were required for the removal of the taliban and were needed to prevent their return to power.

      If the next afghan government is successful afghanistan will finally be able to effectivly stand up for itself.

  • Did Religious Extremism drive 2 Million Egyptian youth to Unbelief?
    • Similar thing in iraq, noted in this website i believe, where the countries issues were making young people doubtful of the existence of a god.

  • 43 Dead, 500 Wounded in Tripoli attack by militia on peaceful Protesters
    • So youre dismissing the only evidence we have on the matter due to you not believing in hypothetical polls which you just made up off the top of your head.

    • Polls have shown time and time again that most libyans favor the intervention.

      As bad as things are now they were worse when libya had a government which launched mass indiscriminate attacks against its people with heavy artillery.

  • CIA Drone Kills Pakistan Taliban Leader on Eve of Peace talks with Islamabad
    • >But what strikes me as most relevant is that the Afghan Taliban is acting as a legit resistance to brutal foreign occupation when they attack our troops.

      The foreign forces have both afghan and international legal approval to conduct operations in afghanistan, attacks against these forces and other un approved actors are far from legitimate.

  • Libyan Prime Minister Abducted, released by Armed Group
    • >“WHAT government?”

      The one that was voted in by the libyan people after the overthrow of gaddafi.

      >nationalist militaries” in other itNations that have ‘brought (or imposed) calm and order’ to those places (absent a basic underlying comity and stability and functioning set of economic relationships?

      It almost seems that your position is that if no efforts were made to improve the security forces of an nation, that nations security would remain the same or improve?

      That making efforts to do such a thing, strengthening those tasked with providing security, wields no positive result.

      This is unlikely for countries with strong economies partially owe this to their states security apparatus which helps to keep the environment safe for trade and to do business.

      >you have a “trustworthy, loyal, [omit "helpful, friendly, courteous and kind"] obedient, cheerful, [omit "thrifty"] brave, clean and reverent” ‘national’ military and ‘national’ police. Where has that happened?

      It would be foolish to claim such efforts always bring positive awards, but you are equally wrong to imply that it is always negative. The us has working relationships with many militaries which they helped to develop, germanys, koreas and japans.

      Such nations even go on exercises together.

      >“Nationalist militaries” seems a bit of an oxymoron

      Hardly, there merely an armed force which serves the national state. Hench the name.

      >“failure”

      Are you implying that this is no failure, that this was planned by the us admin?

      If so where is the evidence.

      >Costa Rica?

      Why are you bringing up costa rica exactly?

      Costa rica doesnt have an army.

      As a side note my posts arent exactly going to win any writing awards any time soon but could you at least try to present your view-point in a less long winded poorly structured way.

      It takes away from your point when one finds it painful to even read your posts.

  • The Hubris of the Syria Interventionists
    • >They’ve lost every war they’ve ever participated in.

      Thats completely inaccurate. No serious historian who looks at the situation in an honest way would come to such a conclusion.

      >Tell me what other war they have won.

      Grenada, Libya, the first iraq conflict, panama, the spanish american war.

  • It's not about Democracy: Top Ten Reasons Washington is Reluctant to cut off Egypt Aid
    • > the medieval Saudí, U.A.E. and Bahréin regimes will fall

      Jumping the gun a bit here arent we.

  • All Hell Breaks Loose in Libya
    • “It’s ok because we say it’s ok.” Where has that theme been heard before? And it’s ok that chaos follows intervention, because that’s what always happens with humans"

      Chaos after an intervention is a terrible thing, but as it has been pointed out before it by itself would not show whether or not the intervention was right or wrong.

      What decides this is the available evidence, as in does the available evidence show that the intervention scenario is better than the alternative.

      In regards to countries like iraq the evidence shows overall harm, the evidence for libya so far shows that most libyans do see the intervention as a good move.

      Again the evidence is what matters

  • Is it Racism? Why did we Ignore New Orleans but obsess about Boston?
    • The bias likely has a lot to do with the fact that no-one, thankfully, died in this scenario.

  • Gates: Administration Critics view of US Military Capabilities in Benghazi "Cartoonish"
  • The Worst Places to be a mother-- Save the Children
    • >No mention of Afghanistan, where “we” have done so much for women and girls.

      Likely not by you but others have made efforts in Afghanistan to improve the situation, although it remains in a terrible condition there have indeed been improvements for both women and girls in that nation.

      Greater access to education to girls for example.

  • Our Terror: US Drone Strikes in Pakistan and Yemen, April 2013:
    • >If any other country had ended the war by destroying, say few American cities, the end of war would have been considered dreadful, bloody & cowardly act.

      If this occurred it would have meant that the axis powers prevailed over the allies, anyone with a somewhat functional brain would have indeed considered such an outcome to be dreadful.

  • Syrian Revolution even Bloodier in March, with record 6000 Dead
    • >Al Jazeera compromised their reputation for objectivity at least a year ago.

      What did they do around this time last year?

  • St. Patrick's Day Explained (ReportingSatire Video)
  • Venezuela and the Middle East after Chavez
    • >That’s was their rhetoric, however in reality they were just competing for resources.

      And in turn we could just claim that "stopping us imperialism" was just rhetoric.

  • "Argo" as Orientalism and why it Upsets Iranians
    • >All stereotypes are specific regardless of the geographical position.

      What i mean by this is that the stereotypes of the east or no more specific than the stereotypes of those else-where.

    • >Because the west has some very specific stereotypes they accord to the east

      All stereotypes are specific regardless of the geographical position.

      > Those lead, however unconsciously, to assumptions that we make about other people, other countries, other cultures.

      This is true of all stereotypes held by those in any region of the world.

    • Why claim that they have engaged in Orientalist behavior and not just claim more accurately that they have engaged in Stereotypical behaviour.

  • 8,775 Firearm Murders a Year in US, Equiv. of 290 in UK
  • RT's Abby Martin Accuses Israel of War Crimes for Targetting Journalists
  • Real Petraeus Issue was Evaluation of Afghanistan
    • >Was there any chance that we, the foreign invader, were going to convince the local population that we were the good guy?

      Polls in afghanistan have time and time again shown that most afghans do see the invasion as just and vastly support foreign efforts over those of the taliban.

  • McCain: Bomb Syria; But Iraq and Russia oppose Intervention
    • Should i take it that nations such as russia likewise should stop beefing up one side.

      Also the best way for the conflict to end would be for assad to step down and allow for free elections.

  • Top Ten Dangers for Obama of Iran Sanctions on behalf of Israel
    • "Denis Halliday, who said that the sanctions were responsible for the deaths of 4000-5000 children per day"

      More recent studies into the welfare of iraqis during these periods suggest that the original estimates that were provided by such individuals and groups were off.

      link to personal.rhul.ac.uk

  • Dear MSM: Andrew Breitbart was not a Blogger
    • "You may agree with Breitbart’s politics and you may have enjoyed reading all his lies "

      Implying that eugene agreed with Breitbarts views is uncalled for considering there is nothing in his comments to suggest such a thing.

      Also his definition of the word blog is correct.

  • Syria: Crimes Against Humanity in Homs
    • "Al Jazeera itself is not that objective"

      As opposed RT?

      "“how come there are no calls for intervention in Yemen? In Bahrain? In Saudi Arabia? Why do we hardly hear about any atrocities over there? How come there was complete silence when Saudi Arabia sent forces to crush demonstrations in Bahrain?"

      It should be pretty obvious, the level of violence in the countries mentioned wasnt at the same level of libyas or even syrias, thats why.

      Also violent actions that have taken place in those countries have been reported, but bahrains death toll is in the dozens, syrias is in the thousands, it makes sense that syria would be in the news more.

  • Syria Veto and the Revenge of the BRICS
    • I guess a bit of the difference was that in 02 to 03 saddam wasnt actually killing thousands of his people the way the syrian government is now.

      Not saying that this difference means that a war should occur, im just saying why the situation is a little different.

  • The Way Forward in the Middle East -- Peled & Peled
    • "it effectively maintains colonies in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, UAE, Kuwait and others."

      Colonies would consist of actual american settlers setting up colonies in these regions, where are these colonies in places like egypt or jordan?

  • Post-American Iraq by the Numbers
    • "And this despite the fact that the U.N. has admitted the figure to be correct. Your diversionary tactic of citing Spagat’s article won’t work in the light of the inconvenient fact that the organisation which ran the sanctions at the behest of the U.S. government admits to the figure. Spagat’s article is an outlier as well you know."

      If you bothered to read the article, as you claimed you did, you would have realised that the most recent UN funded and sponsered studies did not back up the original claims of half a million deaths and that the half million deaths figure is the outlier as shown in the articles last graph.

    • "And yes I have read Spagat’s article in full, want to try some other diversionary tactic as that one didn’t work?"

      What diversionary tactic?, I merely pointed out that a recent study took issue with the claim of half a million deaths and convincingly argued that it is unlikely to be true.

    • "Tell me Nick what about the more than ½ million very young children who died directly as a result of the American led and enforced sanctions?"

      That figure may not be accurate.

      link to significancemagazine.org

  • Israeli Ads against Marriage with American Jews are Part of a Population War
    • Marcs comment kind of reflects the views of a number of friends or others that I know who are currently working in jobs that requires them to be in regular contact with those in foreign nations (although they used much more diplomatic language), even though they worked in different businesses and companies they all tended find the Israelis to be the most difficult and hard to work with due to their manners in a way that they didnt find with other nations.

  • Ambassador Ford's Departure a Defeat for al-Assad
    • "We should clearly refuse to collaborate with governments that are oppressive"

      I hear this complaint a lot and i wonder if those putting it forward have really thought it through, by not collaborating with government one would effectively be putting these countries under a form of sanctions and as we know from iraq, iran and cuba sanctions haven't been very successful in removing regimes but have been highly successful in harming its citizens.

      Also wouldnt such a move require ceasing relations with major countries such as china? Such a move hardly seems feasible.

    • "Additionally, Syria’s geography is diverse and often rugged, and no attempt at intervention would be simple, tactically or logistically."

      On the other-hand Syria is quite closer to Cyprus which means raf bases would be a lot closer.

  • Surprises of the Tunisian Election
    • "Oh sure it would be nice but Tunisian doesn’t have anything the west wants so they might be left alone. The other 2 not so lucky"

      Libyans were actually quite lucky that the west along with others got involved, if they didnt Gaddafis current health status would be quite good while the health status of many of those that protested his rule in east libya would be currently non-existent.

  • Qaddafi's People's Temple
    • Coming from the individual referencing the state controlled rt channel, a channel so poor that one of the "experts" that they got to explain the situation in libya was a mentally disturbed woman called Susan Lindauer.

  • Amanda Knox and Troy Davis
    • Why would the US really benefit from abolishing the death penalty?

      It is a myth to say that it is the only industrialised nation that have it, and many other nations such as the UK, canada and my own would have it if laws really did follow the will of the people. Its also hardly looked down upon by the rest of the world for having it for most people do indeed support it.

      The argument on whether or not it acts as a deterrence is mixed however the majority of studies in the last ten years have found that it does.

  • Palestine, Bahrain and US Hyprocrisy
  • Iraq Adopts Iran's Backing of Assad
    • If he was really popular he would have no problem with having democratic elections in his country.

  • Top Ten Myths about the Libya War
    • "You’re still ignoring the fact that the US (and its rich allies) could easily strike major blow for democracy and human rights in the region by simply removing support for dictators in the region – and for Israeli apartheid – no bombing required"

      By support i presume you mean diplomatic, economic and military relations.

      If these were removed the effect is not likely to be substantial, many oppressive countries such as iran get on by without the support of the US and a number of its allies, if anything the US sanctions as a whole just hurt the people of iran. What makes you think that sanctions would not just hurt the populations of other nations while failing to lodge the oppressive governments from power?

    • "why haven’t they stopped the mass slaughter of protesters in Bharain too?"

      The level of violence in bahrain wasnt even close to the level of violence in libya, also their was no UN mandate or arab league support for it, also the protesters in bahrain never in mass supported a NATO no fly zone.

      Also from a practical stand point a no fly zone was unlikely to achieve much.

      Aside from that, well done juan for your excellent analysis of the situation and for doing you're best not to adopt a simplistic automatic pro or anti western position (which many people seem to do regardless of the situation and whether it is right or wrong to do so),instead you adopted a pro-human rights position and argued coherently for what is in the best interests of the majority of the libyan people.

  • House Libya Vote: Anti-War or Just Anti-Obama?
    • What propaganda?

      Juan just reported what the icc claimed and that it was investigating the issue.

      This is true.

  • Libya not a War for Oil
    • "As for the morality of the war, the bottom-line is that a lot more people have died and a lot more of Libya has been destroyed than would have been the case if the West had not attacked government forces and supported and encouraged the rebels."

      The nato intervention spared areas such as benghazi the fate of places such as mistrata and therefore prevented many deaths, it also greatly assited in weakening gaddafis ability to attack the citizens of mistrata itself.

      The rebel movement itself was mainly motivated by domestic reason, not by foreign encouragement.

      The number of deaths would also have been quite lower if gaddafi respected the wishes of the libyan people and allowed for democratic elections.

  • Our News and their News
    • If by "our news" you mean many domestic US channels, maybe, but international channels like france 24, cnn international and euro news have all been covering the events in the middle east pretty well.

      Also the reason why stations like al jazeera wouldnt really cover stories that are embarrassing to its government authorities is due to qatars press freedom being poor and that criticising the government is, according to reporters without borders, highly risky.

  • Anzalone, After Usama: The Jihadi-Takfiri Trend after Bin Laden
    • "The grievances of the jihadis seem legitimate."

      The grievances of groups like the actual palestinians or lebanese are legitimate however the grievances of al qaeda style jihadists are insincere and false.

      The entire argument that they are angry about unjust harmful interventions run into a snag when one looks at afghanistan, here is a just war in which the majority of afghans feel that the invasion was right and that their lives are better now than they were before, their support for jihadists is also very low.

      Jihadists due to their bias want to believe the opposite however, so they do, in order to justify violence against those that they dislike. They create a grievance in their heads and end up supporting groups like the taliban who tortured many muslims quite often.

      Iraq was harmful however as shown by the above example even if it did not occur or if things went differently and the iraqis situation improved the jihadists would still create a scenario in their heads to justify violence against those that they hold a strong bias against. Its also hard to take them seriously when they commit lots of mass murder there themselves.

      Sympathy from them about the palestinian situation is more likely guided by anti-jewish feelings rather than any genuine sympathy, when 60,000 muslim in darfur were killed they was very little reaction from jihadists, odd for a group that "professes" to stand up for muslim humiliation and downtrodden.

      Also the argument that al qaeda style jihadists are angry about autocratic governments is clearly wrong, they may claim to but as we see whenever they impose control over an area they create a rule far harsher than many goernemnts in the region, they also supported the taliban who were highly oppressive.

      Now that bin laden is dead and normal muslims are over-throwing their rulers hopefully insincere jihadists will go the way of the dinosaur

  • Top Ten Myths about Bin Laden's Death
    • "an old man on dialysis"

      Bin laden was not on dialysis, this is a myth.
      Also there is no evidence that he was physically incapable of operating any weapons or bombs.

    • Great post which helps to clear things up, another example as to why i read this blog.

  • Obama and the End of Al-Qaeda
    • "as long as the US continues to bomb Libya"

      How would abandoning the libyan people to gadaffis rule be a good thing.

      "That won’t happen as long as the US supports the dictatorship in Saudi Arabia, or as long as they demonize Iran."

      The problem is when they stop supporting saudi arabia and start supporting iran people will just flip youre complaint around.

      Personally i think they should have open relations with both for sanctions tend to just hurt the people of certain nations while it doing very little to change the government or alter the way it behaves.

  • Free Libyan fighters exult in small Victories, as US begins Drone Strikes
    • That clearly isnt true, also why would bahrain be more important than the larger conflicts in places like libya and syria.

  • Saif admits Qaddafis are Brutal Foreign Occupiers
    • Without outside interference from france the US would not even exist, europe in turn would have been in a lot of trouble without foreign interference from the US.

      The entire arguement of letting nations sort out their own "destiny" sounds grand but in reality it can be far more harmful.

      Overall its not too bright to always be always for intervention or to be always against it. It makes more sense to support a scenario which you believe will end up supporting and assisting the majority of citizens.

  • Misrata's People under Siege
    • "Along with prolonging and expanding one war in Afghanistan, the Nobel Peace laureate has played a leading role in starting another war in Libya…."

      As obama implyed in his nobel speech, a perfectly peaceful world would be nice, however we do have to look at the world as it is and recognise force is sometimes necessary for the greater good.

  • Answer to Glenn Greenwald
    • When people feel that a certain military interaction is right they are often told that unless they are willing to fight themselves they should be silent on the matter for they are not going to experience the distress that will result due to the decision that they are supporting.

      However couldnt the same be said for those that oppose a certain action, if they had their way distress may also be caused, shouldnt they be willing to experience the distress caused by the option which they supported.

      Shouldnt those opposing an action say that they are perhaps willing to move to the location to see the affects of the decision which they supported.

      For example, greenwald opposes the intervention in libya,lets say if he got his way would he have moved to benghazi to experience what the citizens of that city would have experienced.

  • Cole/ Van den Heuvel on Libya: Nation Podcast
    • "It defies logic: “an Obama administration that keeps unleashing drones and air strikes over civilians in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and – now and then – Somalia is now deeply concerned with protecting Libyan civilians?”

      I don’t buy it."

      Not really, obama believes that certain levels of violence are acceptable and can be used to prevent an even greater level of violence from occuring, that is what he has done in libya and that is what he (rightly or wrongly) believes he is doing in those other regions.

  • All Hell Breaks Loose in the Middle East
    • "the exisitence of two large oil companies BP and Total who would quite like to get their hands on the Libyan oil and gas fields"

      Western companies already had access to libyas oil fields, in fact, if they wanted oil they could have just stood by and let gaddafi crush the rebels and allow the oil to start flowing the same way it did before the conflict.

      "The recent reports of unrest in Syria, being encouraged by US politicians fills me with dread."

      According to freedom house and reporters without borders Syria is one of the most oppressive nations, in a region known for its oppressive nations, if would be foolish to believe that some outside force is the main power directing these protests.

      "From where I stand, the apropriate places for no fly zones are Gaza and Lebanon."

      One can sympathise with the gazans and the lebanese, but it is a mistake to believe that at this current moment they deserve a no-fly zone over the libyans, the violence in libya is currently far worse than anything going in those two other regions at the moment

  • Top Ten Accomplishments of the UN No-Fly Zone
    • "If this was merely to save the people of Benghazi, that was done on the first day. Why then did the bombings continue?"

      It was to protect libyan civilians and civilians are still being attacked elsewhere in the country.

  • King's Nixonian Hearings against American Muslims
    • "True enough, if they’re in the majority. That isn’t the case with the Catholics (though it’s not a religious conflict) in Northern Ireland."

      Bombing innocent people is still sadistic and it was unnecessary.

  • Alimagham: What Egypt & Tunisia Tell us About Iran
    • I imagine one of the key differnces was that the egyptians seemed to have a much more focused goal, the removal of mubarack, the iranian protests from what i remember did not strongly come out and call for the removal of the supreme leader who is just as oppressive as mubarack was.

  • Anzalone: Hezbollah’s Double Standards: Tunisia and Iran
    • Actually it is quite likely, the iranian government is and was a more oppressive nation, this is shown by its poor showing on the freedom house list, it also ranks quite poorly on the reporters without borders index.

    • "the Iranian government, while certainly hated by many in Iran, still enjoys ***far*** wider support among the public than anything Mubarak or Ben Ali had."

      Or it is just better at beating people down.

  • Glaspie Memo Vindicates Her, Shows Saddam's Thinking
    • Theres was an interesting interview here with tariq azziz, he claims that there was no mixed signals, and that it was clear that the US would not have liked an invasion of kuwait.

      link to pbs.org

  • Stewart: Aljazeera Pays More Attention to First Responders than Senate Republicans, US Networks
    • I think al jazeera English is an excellent channel, it along with cnn international and france 24, in my opinion, provide the best and most overall balanced coverage, however that isnt to say that the channel is perfect, channels shouldn’t just be judged on how critical they can be towards american issues, they should also be judged towards how critical they are towards their own nations or the nations in which they were developed, here al jazeera does not do as well, it’s all good and well criticising the press freedom in let’s say italy on shows like the listening post, but al jazeeras criticism on Qatar’s press freedom is quite muted.

  • Jahanpour: US following Israeli 5-Point Plan on Iran: Wikileaks
    • I support improving relations with iran, sanctions have a poor record and they mainly just hurt the people who, as pointed out in this article, are pro-west.
      However wouldnt this involve the US having to do something for which it is constantly criticised for doing so, having relations with an oppressive middle eastern governement.

      Again, im ok with opening better relations overall, but sometimes those who are most critical of US relations with oppressive middle eastern nations are the same people who are very hostile to the US's non-relationship with iran.

  • Blair, Hitchens Debate Religion
    • "why would anyone willingly believe in their own capacity to burn in a hellish place for eternity?"

      Hell is a tool to scare people into accepting religion, also those who believe in their religion feel that they are safe and that it is the unbelievers who are going to be tortured for enternity.

      "in its self-assuredness that it is neutral"

      Science itself is neutral, it is just the organising of knowledge through testing.
      If something is wrong it is removed, if it is right it is added, if that right later turns out to be wrong, then it is removed, its not gospel.

      "Thus people were blind to how science was used in the service of injustices"

      Again science is just the organisation of knowledge, blaming science for certain wrongs is like blaming physics when some pyromaniac uses fire to cause damage.

      "How could morality enter the picture when ever-neutral science was invoked?"

      Sam Harris would have some issues with this view.

      "Religion has a capacity for self-criticism, since contemplation is a fundamental tenet; science does not,"

      You have got it completely the wrong way around, science is very self-critical, religion is not, have you never heard of peer-review.

      In answering the question “how?” science does not answer the question, “why?”

      If I was to ask "why the hell did a certain bridge fall?", I would not consult a priest who merely asserts this and that, i would consult a scientific construction engineer.

      "and to dismiss their varied attempts to answer this"

      Its reasonable to dimiss weak assertions backed up by weak evidence, for example if the earth started to tremble would you accept or dismiss the claims by some tribal chief asserting that their is an angry god under the ground shaking it, or would you accept the findings of those who have looked into the matter in a scientific critical manner and found seismic waves were the culprit.

    • "Murderers and destroyers of nations"

      Iraq was without doubt a mistake however i would consider tony blairs other military interventions overall just, such as sierra leone, kosovo and afghanistan.

      Its also good to see a proper estimate of stalins acts, 10 million is bad enough without putting forth clearly false claims like 60 million which ive seen on a number of occassions.

  • Palestinians Observe Nakbah or Catastrophe Day, raise Hopes of Unity
    • Perhaps they figured that getting a second truce without extensive military action against Hamas in Gaza was unlikely.

      Why would they have thought that, as i said before Israels own intelligence apparatus was saying the exact opposite, according to shin bet a hamas ceasefire option was available.

    • "They did, however, manage to successfully reduce the frequency of Hamas attacks"

      The number of attacks decreased beforehand due to a ceasefire and according to Yuval Diskin who was the head of the Israeli security service Shin Bet, hamas was willing to renew this ceasefire, so the the war in gaza and the deaths that it caused was not necessary.

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