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Old 07-31-2006, 06:45 PM   #61
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Originally posted by financeguy
It would be interesting to hear from some Lebanese posters.
That's for damn sure.
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Old 07-31-2006, 07:05 PM   #62
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Well things are really heating up now as The Syrian President raises the readieness of his troops. http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060731/...deast_assad_dc
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Old 07-31-2006, 07:17 PM   #63
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I don't think there's a person here who denies that (a) Israel do whatever they can to avoid civilians, and (b) Hezbollah do whatever they can to put them in harms way. I think what we are saying is that this is the hand that this kind of terrorist driven warfare has dealt, and either unfortunately or difficulty, depending on your perspective, it demands a different way of thinking. I'm not a military strategist, I have no answers, but as it stands it's lose/lose for Israel. Don't fight back? Lose. Fight back and hit civilians? Lose.
I am very strongly pro-Israel in this situation and you'll hear no argument from me against those who say this is 100% on Hezbollahs head, however Israel are truly never going to get anywhere while they are fighting a style of war which is absolutely guaranteed to create another generation bent on Israel's destruction. I don't have the answer, but I know there's no way this is it. At worst this will spiral and inflame, at best Israel will achieve success in driving Hezbollah either back and creating a buffer zone, or dealing them a semi-lethal blow, both of which are only very very temporary solutions. I don't see how anyone can't see that. Using force like this to knock them out is precisely what gives them power. They need to have their power and influence taken away, not emboldened. Whether Israel is in the right or wrong, it's still not the solution.
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Old 07-31-2006, 08:52 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally posted by Earnie Shavers
I don't think there's a person here who denies that (a) Israel do whatever they can to avoid civilians, and
this is not true


blowing up buildings, knowing there will be some civilian casualties is not doing whatever they can do to avoid civilians


and in this current situation

Hezbollah appears more decent that Israel

if you look at the ratio of civilian (women and children ) killed by Israel

and the ratio of civilians killed by hezzbollah

Israel is the greater killer of innocent non-combatants
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Old 07-31-2006, 09:11 PM   #65
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Well, I'm saying that their tactics are foolish because they are hitting civilians and that this is precisely what emboldens, strengthens and hands support straight to their enemies. Within the context of what I see as a mistaken approach, they are doing all they can. To do more would be to change the approach, which is what I am suggesting they should be doing. To put it another way: I don't believe Israel would have thrown a missile into that apartment building if they had known for sure there were 60+ civilians, including 30+ children, inside. However, the fact that Israel would send a missile into an apartment building at all is the crucial mistake they are making. I guess what I'm saying that within the context of the approach they are taking, they are reaching the bar, but they have set the bar very low. In summary: if you are going to bomb a dense residential area from 35,000 feet you are asking for it.
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Old 07-31-2006, 09:18 PM   #66
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if they killed 7-8 Hezbollah with all the non-combatants


or

if there was a rocket launcher next door

no one would care about all the dead children

they would be saying it was a good hit


and this is why Israel and the U S are alone
because non Israeli or non American lifes are almost meaningless to them
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Old 07-31-2006, 09:36 PM   #67
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Israel and the U.S. are alone, practically. Deep is right, they don't give a damn about any lives that aren't Israeli or American. Don't misunderstand me, I am a strong supporter of Israel's right to exist and right to defend itself. But bombing Lebanese buildings isn't the way to win this war.
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Old 07-31-2006, 10:40 PM   #68
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Originally posted by deep


blowing up buildings, knowing there will be some civilian casualties is not doing whatever they can do to avoid civilians
Let me qualify the statement this way. I wouldn't say they are doing "everything they can" to avoid hitting civilians, but I think Israel is not intentionally TARGETING civilians the way Hezbollah is. There is a difference.

I think the Israeli military thinks there's Hezbollah hiding out in a building and they know there are a bunch of civilians there too, well they're gonna hit the building anyway. The civilian deaths are "unfortunate" but "necessary" to get at the real enemy. This is standard conventional warfare tatics (think Normandy as Sting is endlessly fond of reminding us, think the Dresden firebombings, and of course the atomic bombs on Japan). And I think Earnie Shavers has quite eloquently pointed out that this method, in addition to being tragic for the civilians caught in the crossfire, works against Israel's long term interests.
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Old 08-01-2006, 12:52 AM   #69
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well ,

there is no way they will intensify


so from a political or whatever you want to call it

this has not been good for Israel
Really?

"Israel OKs wider ground offensive in Lebanon"

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14100258/page/2/


"Israel approves wider ground offensive"

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060731/...NlYwMlJVRPUCUl



Israel is currently using less than 5% of their combat strength in the current operation. 50,000 reservist are being mobilized although they have not been sent into battle yet. Israel technically has the ability to intensify the operations by a factor of 100.

So far though, the operation has been very limited and restrained, only involving small portions of the Army, Airforce and Navy.

It remains to be seen what further action Israel plans to take, but they can and should intensify operations so they can take all the land in Lebanon south of the Latini river in order to create an effective buffer zone that will keep 98% of Hezbollah's rocket forces out of range of Israel, and will effectively end the incursions by Hezbollah forces into Israeli territory. Provided the civilian population is removed from the area, Hezbollah will find it difficult if not impossible to fight the IDF in an environment where they do not have civilians to hide behind or blend in with. The area from the Israel/Lebanon border to the Latini river is 15 miles and from the sea to the eastern Lebanon border in this area is about 20 miles.

There have been rumors that Israel only plans to take about 2 miles all along the border. This would not be an effective buffer zone as the rockets could still be positioned in area's that would easily hit northern Israeli towns, and 2 miles may not be enough space to effectively prevent incursions into Israeli territory. The recent reports from the Israeli government plans to expand combat operations suggest if this was ever a plan, that it has been abandon for something larger.
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Old 08-01-2006, 01:08 AM   #70
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Well, certainly not everyone in France wanted the invasion. Say the Vichy government for example. But you're missing my point. That was a conventional war against a nation-state. All I've asked you to do is to concede that this is what is happening between Israel and Lebanon, and you refuse to do so. I'm not sure why.

I think you're making some very unfair assumptions about myself and other like-minded posters here. You're assuming that anything other than unqualified, unquestioning support of any and all actions Israel takes equals support for Hezbollah. I've got news for you--NO ONE on this site supports Hezbollah, their actions, or their goals. It's like if I see a basketball player hurling the basketball at the backboard and I say, "You know there might be a better way to do that" and the player turns around and says, "Hey, you should support me! Obviously you just want me to lose!" Everyone I've read posting here agrees that Israel has a right to defend itself. Everyone I've read posting here is aware that Israel's very existence has been threatened since it's inception and that they've had to fight simply for the right to exist. All some of us are asking is "might there be a better way to keep Israel safe AND reduce the loss of civilian life." You say no, and consider any dissent as an attack on Israel!




Surely you must be joking. Last I checked our country has been run by human beings, not infallible gods. How can any country have EVERY war it has ever been involved in be just. There are many wars that have been both necessary and just--The American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Civil War, World War I and World War II and the invasion of Afghanistan come to mind. But for others--the Mexican War, the Spanish American War, and especially the Indian Wars, there is at the very least some question of the "justness" of these wars. I suppose if you equate national policy with "justness" then yes. But then every nation can claim they are fighting a "just war" and that isn't possible, is it? (Especially if they're fighting agaisnt us).





I think Hezbollah is a terrorist organization that needs to be stopped. Why are we not more vocal in complaining more about them? Because they're beyond reasoning with, in my opinon. Israel is a reasonable, democratic country that might be persuaded to pursue different means of preseserving their national security. There won't be much reasoning with Hezbollah, I'm afraid. Do I think that Hezbollah's hiding among civilians is wrong? Of course! Just like I think, when a bank robber comes out of the bank with hostage in one arm and a gun in the other. The police could say, "Damn that robber. . .that is so wrong to use a hostage as a shield like that" and then open fire mowing them both down. But the police generally don't do that. But again, as I've already said, if Israel is indeed engaged in conventional warfare against Lebanon, then yes dropping bombs on missile launchers in neighborhoods would be a sad but necessaryaction. Would you agree that Israel is engaging in conventional warfare against Lebanon?





There is only one guilty party less often than we'd like to believe.
Israel is engaging in military operations against Hezbollah in the same it would engage the Syrian military if it was in Lebanon. Yes, these are conventional military weapons and conventional military tactics, but the goal is not to destroy the country of Lebanon any more than the Allies wanted to destroy the country of France, Italy or Germany in World War II or Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003.

If you think there is a better way for Israel to defend against the thousands of rockets been fired into its cities and the terrorist incursions across its border, state what this better plan is instead of simply criticizing what the Israeli's are doing.

I could take each one of the 15 wars the United States has fought in, depending on what your definition of a war is, and explain in detail why it was a just war. I don't believe in "might makes right" or just because its the national policy of a democracy that makes it just. I think in all these instances, the United States was clearly justified in its actions given the facts and circumstances of the situations. The Indian Wars I do not include in the number above though. I have some objections to policy in that area.

As for the Vietcong, they were defeated long before 1972. In fact after the TET Offensive in 1968 during which an estimated 60,000 Viet Cong were killed, the NVA(North Vietnamese Army) did the vast majority of the fighting in the war. The Viet Cong was the insurgency that had been going in the south, and by 1970-1971, it had been effectively ended, and the war consisted of what would be more consistent of a normal conventional interstate war between the South Vietnam and North Vietnam by 1972.

In 1972, all but 20,000 US advisors had been pulled out of South Vietnam. North Vietnam launched a massive offensive in April of that year and the South Vietnamese asorbed the blow and effectively turned back the offensive with the support of the US advisors and US airpower. There was no insurgency involved in the fighting at that point, and all the fighting involved conventional North Vietnamese Army divisions launching and offensive from North Vietnam and Laos and places in South Vietnam they already controlled into the area controlled by South Vietnam. The Offensive failed, and at the end of the year, North Vietnam was forced to sign the ceacefire terms given to it by the United States. As part of the ceacefire, the United States completely withdrew from South Vietnam in March 1973. A few months after the United States completely withdrew from South Vietnam, the fighting started up again between North Vietnam and South Vietnam. But South Vietnam was able to hold its own against the North without US advisors or airpower. But in late 1973, the US congress blocked US supplies being sent to the South Vietnamese military. Despite the difficulties this created for the South Vietnamese military, it continued to successfully defend their country from attacks from the North for the rest of 1973. Through out 1974, the South continued to successfully defend its self from attacks by North Vietnam. In early 1975, the South Vietnamese military, having not recieved any military aid for nearly 2 years, suffered some serious military setbacks. Within weeks the North launched a massive offensive with tanks, armored carriers for infantry, artillery and all the other components of any modern conventional military offensive. They successfully took South Vietnam a few months later.

But they took South Vietnam using conventional military weapons and tactics, the same way Israel has defeated its Arab opponents for the past 58 years, or the Allies defeated Germany in World War II. The insurgency in South Vietnam, from the Viet Cong(South Vietnamese civilians) had ceaced to be a factor in the war by 1970, 5 years earlier. It is a totally inaccurate myth that the United States was actually defeated on the battlefield by an insurgency(the Viet Cong in this case) and that what was seen at the US Embassy in 1975 followed the US retreat from this insurgency. The US by then had been completely withdrawn from South Vietnam except for the Embassy compound, for over 2 years by then and had no part in the fighting in the region from 1973 onward. South Vietnam was overrun by a large invading conventional military force from North Vietnam in 1975, not an underground insurgency by the Vietcong.

The Vietcong and the justness of US wars should probably be discussed in a different thread anyways.
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Old 08-01-2006, 01:39 AM   #71
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Quote:
Originally posted by deep
if they killed 7-8 Hezbollah with all the non-combatants


or

if there was a rocket launcher next door

no one would care about all the dead children

they would be saying it was a good hit


and this is why Israel and the U S are alone
because non Israeli or non American lifes are almost meaningless to them
When a country engages in military action, it is impossible to insure that no civilians will be killed. The allies killed 20,000 French civilians in the opening days of D-Day. Did they try to do that, of course not. Did they do everything they could at the time to avoid civilian casualties given the necessity of the military operations they had to carry out, of course.

In 1999, the 19 nation NATO Alliance engaged in a 78 day bombing compaign to stop the Serb slaughter of Kosovo civilians. But the bombing campaign did lead to the deaths of nearly a thousand Serb civilians in Serbia. Did the 19 Democratic nations of NATO try to kill those Serb Civilians, no. They did everything they could, given the military operation that was required to stop the Serbs, to prevent the acidental death of civilians.
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Old 08-01-2006, 01:45 AM   #72
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Originally posted by Earnie Shavers
Well, I'm saying that their tactics are foolish because they are hitting civilians and that this is precisely what emboldens, strengthens and hands support straight to their enemies. Within the context of what I see as a mistaken approach, they are doing all they can. To do more would be to change the approach, which is what I am suggesting they should be doing. To put it another way: I don't believe Israel would have thrown a missile into that apartment building if they had known for sure there were 60+ civilians, including 30+ children, inside. However, the fact that Israel would send a missile into an apartment building at all is the crucial mistake they are making. I guess what I'm saying that within the context of the approach they are taking, they are reaching the bar, but they have set the bar very low. In summary: if you are going to bomb a dense residential area from 35,000 feet you are asking for it.
If your unwilling to bomb any apartment building or for that matter any area within a town or city, guess where Hezbollah will firing all of its rockets from? Hezbollah could sit on the roof of any apartment buildings in South Lebanon and launch rockets into Israel all day without having to worry about being hit if you had rules of engagement that prevented the IDF from hitting such area's.

How would the United States have removed Al Quada and the Taliban from power in Afghanistan if it had used tactics even more restrained that what the Israeli's are using against Hezbollah in Lebanon? If such restrictions were placed on any military force, it would prove nearly impossible for them to do their job. Al Quada would still have its base in Afghanistan, the Taliban would still be ruling the country, and there would be no democracy for the people there.
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Old 08-01-2006, 01:52 AM   #73
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Originally posted by verte76
Israel and the U.S. are alone, practically. Deep is right, they don't give a damn about any lives that aren't Israeli or American. Don't misunderstand me, I am a strong supporter of Israel's right to exist and right to defend itself. But bombing Lebanese buildings isn't the way to win this war.
If that were the case, there would be 300,000 dead Lebanese civilians right now instead of 400. Israel could turn Lebanon, the West Bank, and Gaza into a wasteland if they did not give a damn about innocent civilians. AchtungBono who is in Tel Aviv right now can tell you more about just how much the Israeli people and military care about the innocent civilians whether they be in Gaza, Westbank, or Lebanon.


Everyday in Iraq, US military personal risk their lives to defend Iraqi civilians from the terrorism of the insurgency there. They are doing everything they can to provide the Iraqi people with the ability to have a free and prosperous society rather than the Dictatorship of Saddam which led to the deaths of nearly 1 million Iraqi's during his reign in power for 24 years.
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Old 08-01-2006, 02:11 AM   #74
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I don't think there's a person here who denies that (a) Israel do whatever they can to avoid civilians, and (b) Hezbollah do whatever they can to put them in harms way. I think what we are saying is that this is the hand that this kind of terrorist driven warfare has dealt, and either unfortunately or difficulty, depending on your perspective, it demands a different way of thinking. I'm not a military strategist, I have no answers, but as it stands it's lose/lose for Israel. Don't fight back? Lose. Fight back and hit civilians? Lose.
I am very strongly pro-Israel in this situation and you'll hear no argument from me against those who say this is 100% on Hezbollahs head, however Israel are truly never going to get anywhere while they are fighting a style of war which is absolutely guaranteed to create another generation bent on Israel's destruction. I don't have the answer, but I know there's no way this is it. At worst this will spiral and inflame, at best Israel will achieve success in driving Hezbollah either back and creating a buffer zone, or dealing them a semi-lethal blow, both of which are only very very temporary solutions. I don't see how anyone can't see that. Using force like this to knock them out is precisely what gives them power. They need to have their power and influence taken away, not emboldened. Whether Israel is in the right or wrong, it's still not the solution.
Israel has been winning for 58 years now. Despite all the terrorism and wars launched against it, they have successfully defended themselves and have grown into one of the most prosperous democracies on the planet. The losers have been the Arab forces that have continued their attacks and attempts to destroy Israel through war or terrorism. They have failed in all their attempts, which have only resulted in decreasing living standards for their civilians and little or no progress in attaining a better standard of living, especially relative to Israel. Lebanon, West Bank, Gaza, Syria are stuck in the third world past, while Israel is a prosperous democracy advancing through the 21st century. Its time that the Arab leaders in these area's adopted new strategies that will actually constuctively achieve something for themselves and their civilians. Israel is going to continue the successful path they have blazed for 58 years, if their Arab neighbors choose to remain failures by engaging in sensless terrorism and war against Israel, then that is their choice.

The current military action we see in Lebanon is another episode in Israel's 58 year history of successfully defending their growing prosperous democracy. Its true that Hezbollah will a remain a force even if Israel actually goes for creating a buffer zone. But Hezbollah will be prevented in such a case from assaulting Israel in the way it has for the past 3 weeks. Eliminating Hezbollah entirely, at least its military elements would of course require additional methods beyond just military action, but military action would still be key, especially if Hezbollah resisted attempts to completely disarm. But Israel does not have to completely disarm Hezbollah in order to prevent incursions across its northern border and prevent the rocketing of its town in the north.

Military action has been extremely effective in Afghanistan against similar type forces. Al Quada are virtually gone from the country, and only small numbers of Taliban from across the border in Pakistan or able to make what has been ineffective raids against the country. Afghanistan is a democracy, and the country is enjoying a level of peace it has not seen since prior to the Soviet invasion in Afganistan. Of course, keep in mind that conflict between various parts of Afghanistan has been a way of life there for thousands of years, so peace in this case is definitely different from the way others would define it.
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Old 08-01-2006, 02:20 AM   #75
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Let me qualify the statement this way. I wouldn't say they are doing "everything they can" to avoid hitting civilians, but I think Israel is not intentionally TARGETING civilians the way Hezbollah is. There is a difference.

I think the Israeli military thinks there's Hezbollah hiding out in a building and they know there are a bunch of civilians there too, well they're gonna hit the building anyway. The civilian deaths are "unfortunate" but "necessary" to get at the real enemy. This is standard conventional warfare tatics (think Normandy as Sting is endlessly fond of reminding us, think the Dresden firebombings, and of course the atomic bombs on Japan). And I think Earnie Shavers has quite eloquently pointed out that this method, in addition to being tragic for the civilians caught in the crossfire, works against Israel's long term interests.
Look at Al Quada and Afghanistan. Was the US operation which was much more intense and aggressive succesfull in removing the Taliban and Al Quada from power in Afghanistan and creating a level of stability not seen there since prior to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan? I don't see any evidence that large scale US military action there has worked against Afghanistans long term interest or the United States long term interest.

Just looking at Israel's 58 year history, how has their choices in engaging in military action hurt their long term interest considering how they have survived as one of the most prosperous democracies on the planet and continue to progress into the future while all their neighbors are stuck in the past?

You have to give Israel credit for what they have achieved despite the odds over the past 58 years. They know all to well all the factors we are all discussing, and all though they are not infallible, they have a level of experience and success in dealing with these types of problems that exceeds just about every other country on the planet.
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