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Old 08-20-2008, 08:40 PM   #16
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I am really proud of this thread. I mean how often is it that we get such an opportunity for intelligent discussion... and the opportunity to bash two republicans at once.....

Oh my, I think I just felt a twitch in my pants....so exciting.
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Old 08-21-2008, 10:42 AM   #17
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John McCain was tortured -- but he was one of the lucky ones.


i quite agree. he was tortured.

you should email your president and tell him.
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Old 08-21-2008, 10:44 AM   #18
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I am really proud of this thread. I mean how often is it that we get such an opportunity for intelligent discussion... and the opportunity to bash two republicans at once.....

Oh my, I think I just felt a twitch in my pants....so exciting.


being totally honest here, i can't think of a more pressing issue than torture and what has happened to the standards of conduct by our military and how much this has been intentionally eroded over the past 8 years. and, in fact, i think it's quite dramatically ironic that the Republican nominee was himself tortured by the Viet Cong with the very same techniques -- forced standing, stress positions, hypothermia, sleep deprivation, denial of medical treatment -- that have now been used by US soldiers in GitMo and beyond.

yes, there's a degree of drama in here, but the overall point is, i think , quite profound. and important.
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Old 08-21-2008, 12:47 PM   #19
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I can think of a number of more pressing issues than torture. I happened to be far more concerned about the mass murder of individuals that occurs on a daily basis as the free world stands by and does nothing. I am sorry if that offends anyone, but it's all about scale. Every person has a right to life, but it is beyond the scope of humanity to resolve every issue. If you believe otherwise, I think you are overly idealistic.

I am not here to bash anyone's beliefs, but perspective is everything. I am certainly not here to advocate or defend torture or those who would commit acts that do not appropriately represent the United States, or any other nation for that matter.

It does seem to me that there are those who would rather we place those we have taken into custody into holding and not interrogate or otherwise attempt, by any means, to gather intelligence from them. That is not OK with me. It is not OK with me that more soldiers or innocent civilians would die by failing to pursue such information. I do agree that there have to be limits, but fundamentally this is a security issue.

Just by reading these forums there seem to be a lot of people who do not believe that the world is a closed system and there are in fact people who want you, me and every member of our families dead just because we live in a certain demographic or believe that we should have the right to post in forums such as this.

As far as the standards of conduct in our military, those men and women are following orders, for the most part. Those who commit illegal acts are criminals, but that is certainly not the majority or even any significant minority of those serving. The UCMJ provides for their punishment of those who do commit such crimes.

I think debate on any subject is healthy, but broad generalizations about our military, elected officials or any group is exactly what feeds sectarianism, and ultimately conflict. Everywhere forum I read seems to be an 'us and them' mentality. If that trend continues, we are all doomed.

As a personal statement, for all the criticism of John McCain and the military, I suggest anyone here experience some of the things they have experienced for one day. It may be fair to criticize policy, but personal attacks on people who would give their life to defend you is absolutely unacceptable to me.
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Old 08-21-2008, 01:03 PM   #20
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what do we fight for if not to preserve our way of life, which involves treating human beings -- even the lowest of the low -- to basic standards of dignity? who are we if we ourselves cannot stick to basic standards of law? who do we become if we use the techniques of those who've been relegated to the dustbin of history (Pol Pot, the Viet Cong, the Stalinists, the Stasi)?

what kind of society would we live in if we are to accept everything and anything the military does and view any sort of criticism as "unacceptable"?

this is called a junta. this is life in Myanmar/Burma. this is what the West and the US is supposed to be about. this is what we have to defend -- our way of life.

and the torture debate gets to the absolute heart of this.

and there's also the small matter of the fact that torture doesn't work. it gets you bad information. it's a waste of time and resources.
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Old 08-21-2008, 01:07 PM   #21
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there are in fact people who want you, me and every member of our families dead just because we ... believe that we should have the right to post in forums such as this.
I want to thank you for your post because I think it is very thoughtful and I wish you'd post more.

But I want to highlight this above as logic that has really been bought into by a large segment of the American population. It is very simplistic thinking because it frames the issue in a very clear way - they want to take away your right to eat a chicken McNugget!! and so on. It isn't constructive and I wish you had better politicians and a better media so that people didn't actually go around believing that a billion brown people want you dead because you think you should have a right to post on Interference.
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Old 08-21-2008, 01:46 PM   #22
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anitram, thank you for your sentiments.

It is always my hope that no one 'buys' anything on face value. I understand there are those on both sides of the political fence that do just that regularly. I do happen to believe after much thought, observation, study and life experience that that very thought i mentioned is true. I may be right or wrong, but the evidence presented in my life has shown that to me in a very clear way. What is very unclear to me is how to resolve the situation.

I have to say I don't subscribe the the McNugget philosophy! There is not much that can be said for people who do, other than the fact that they are ill informed.

I base my beliefs on radical leadership throughout the world. It is their stated intent to harm citizen's of the United States, whether our president is Bush, Kerry, Clinton, Gore or anyone else. It is also the intention of some nations to villianise the United States in order to foster their own internal political agendas. That was fairly evident this week in the Russian media's coverage of the conflict in Georgia.

Generations have grown up consuming anti-American sentiment. They teach their children what they were taught. Hopefully, with more informtion accessisible current and future generations will open up and there will be a renewed level of tolerance.

My fear is that as populations soar, resources dwindle and the same old suspects exist in global politics (or their equivalents), we are going to see more conflict, not less. There seems to be some denial on the part of some, but it is the fundamental law of systems science: the entropy of a closed system increases.

Logic leads me to the beliefs I hold today based on the information presented to me. I am sure that is different for everyone based on their own experience. I do know that if I were to go to downtown a number of nations and stand in a public square preaching freedom and human rights, I would be locked up at a minimum.
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Old 08-21-2008, 01:58 PM   #23
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Logic leads me to the beliefs I hold today based on the information presented to me. I am sure that is different for everyone based on their own experience. I do know that if I were to go to downtown a number of nations and stand in a public square preaching freedom and human rights, I would be locked up at a minimum.
There's no doubt that this is true. We in the west definitely enjoy a level of personal and collective freedom that is sorely lacking in other parts of the world.

But what I think is simplistic is that argument that "they" (whoever they are) hate us because of our way of life, period. Certainly you will find factions in the Islamic world that probably hate just about every aspect of our lifestyle. There are actually factions right here in the US that hate a good portion of some of our lifestyles as well, and no doubt this is amplified in a truly theocratic system. However, this is just one facet of the problem that the Islamic world as a whole has. The countries are by and large poor and uneducated. There is no access to secular education at all. They are at the mercy of theocrats and dictators whom we largely support (look no further than the Saudis), whether enthusiastically or tacitly. The infrastructure is terrible, and on and on. A lot of that translates into perceived evildoing by the US and the West more generally, but a lot of it isn't exactly based in complete nonsense. Again, our continued support of terrible regimes there so that we can drive ridiculous trucks and Hummers here fueled by cheap gas should bring shame upon us.

Bottom line is: if we say, they want to kill all of us because they hate our way of life, that is a very cheap and easy way out of a complex situation to which we HAVE contributed to some degree if we are being at all honest.

This is to say nothing of the fact that I think the majority out there really has no tangible qualms with the West and frankly would embrace the opportunity to emigrate if they had it.
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Old 08-21-2008, 02:37 PM   #24
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anitram, I happen to agree with your thoughts. I may have presented this simply, but I understand it is not a simple problem, nor is there a simple solution. I also know that some of our actions in the past have contributed to the current state of affairs, whether intentional or not. We have supported some of the worst regimes in history and sit by while they sponsor or commit atrocities inside and outside of their borders. I think their are many good people in the world from every nation.

The situation in the world is certainly complex. It helps to understand how we got here, but in the end, it matters more what we do going forward. I suspect there are many people in the world who despise western civilization because they were taught that was the right thing to do. It is certainly true that there are people in the United States who hold similar beliefs about others in the world. Information, education and setting a good example are the only ways to move forward.

One of the reasons I originally posted was that the same issues I see between east and west, axis and allies, nation to nation, I am seeing internally in the United States. We have become so polarized in our beliefs and consumed with calling each other 'libs', neo-cons', etc. that it is amazing to me that we make any progress as a nation. In fact, we are probably not making any progress. We could never hope to solve the world's problems, if they are in fact ours to solve at all, if we cannot behave in non-partisan manner internally. There is so much focus on blame being shifted from one side to the other and we are not directing our energy and intelligence on solving problems and attaining goals. We all need to support each other and move forward. Maybe, I am the one being too idealistic now!
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Old 08-21-2008, 02:43 PM   #25
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but when it comes to the issue of torture, it is simple.

it doesn't work.
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Old 08-21-2008, 02:50 PM   #26
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Irvine511, I happen to agree with you on many points, as well. Torture is not highly effective. It is not an optimal approach by any means. At times, it does produce results. At times, it produces incorrect results. There are certainly moral issues associated to the practice.

I am certainly not of the belief that those in the military are above the law. I am also not of the belief that 'military' as a whole should be judged. The Army, Navy, Air Force and Coast Guard are governed by stricter rules/regulations than any private citizen. These organizations are made up of individuals. Most are very good people with good intentions. Some are not. Those who act illegally should be punished. If an unlawful order is given, it is an officer's right to deny it with appropriate grounds to do so.
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Old 08-21-2008, 02:57 PM   #27
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This thread title is hilarious.
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Old 08-21-2008, 03:18 PM   #28
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Wow, this is about the shittiest thread I've ever read on FYM. Well done guys.
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Old 08-21-2008, 03:20 PM   #29
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Old 08-21-2008, 03:20 PM   #30
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Wow, this is about the shittiest thread I've ever read on FYM. Well done guys.

i know, it's shitty when your nation does things you like to think that only other nations do.

you should ask george bush and all the defenders of "enhanced interrogation techniques" if they think john mccain, a prisoner of war, was tortured.
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