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Old 08-30-2004, 10:35 PM   #1
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War on Terror is Unwinnable

On the WoT Bush Says
Quote:
I don't think you can win it,'
Quote:
But I think you can create conditions so that the - those who use terror as a tool - are less acceptable in parts of the world
Now I was wondering what people think about the context of this quote and if it is true.

I would argue that a literal war on terrorism isn't winnable, you can never defeat terrorism outright. It is a means of operation, people can always use violence against civilians for political ends. This is not defeatist by any means, terrorism cannot be ended through millitary action alone but it can be reduced if countires stay ever vigilant and keep fighting it. We cannot let our guard down, they (and I mean Islamofascists, even if the term is unpallatable to you I make no apologies, I find political Islam a despotic system that robs individuality and has no place in a peacefull world - human rights must triumph over opressive superstition and power structures) will not stop coming until their system reigns supreme or all of humanity can enjoy the peace of the grave.

A war on political Islam however would be winnable, it is not fought with armies but with intelligence, ideas and economics. By all means exert strong power in suitiable situations to catalyze the change you desire but any millitary action must be there to furthur the broader aims. Think of the Marshall plan and then modify it to transform the Arab world (which to be fair is the major center for Islamist terrorism, in regards to funding and ideology, remove that continuous flow then sattelite groups in SE Asia may find a significantly diminished operational capacity) from centers of violence and instability to pluralist liberal democracies. Such a thing is achievable, it will take decades of structured policy and action but it can be done. Everybody in the world must have the right to live freely, until that is acheived the potential for massive annihilation is a threat, albeit not the most reciognized one.

Peace is guaranteed through liberty, when the world is free all of humanity can move forward together and united.
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Old 08-30-2004, 11:54 PM   #2
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well said
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Old 08-31-2004, 12:23 AM   #3
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If it can't be won, then bring the troops home now!
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Old 08-31-2004, 12:28 AM   #4
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I think a lot of what you say make sense, but I think a lot of what you say has been ignored in the planning of this war.
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:37 AM   #5
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I've said this before, but I'll say it again, you'd have to have a major shift in the Arabic mindset before they would ever become secular states. In my mind, the fixed nature of their social and economic system, and how it's tied up with Islam and Sharia (Islamic law), are going to prevent "liberal democracies" from coming into being. I don't know, maybe a coup would do the trick, but I wonder if a secular government would really have the support of people accustomed to Sharia. There were all sorts of plots against Ataturk back in the '20's when he secularized Turkey. And the Turks are not Arabs; they're the kind of Muslims who knew damn well the Sultans were getting drunk in the palace in Istanbul, but the worst thing they did was gossip. They even called one of their Sultans "Selim the Drunk". They're not very strict Muslims. This would be very risky stuff. The Arabic countries, like Jordan, Syria, and the people in the West Bank of Israel already have educational systems, so I don't know how that would be changed. Many of them have textbooks and such financed by wealthy Saudis, who of course promote Wahhabist ideas. These ideas are not approved of by the governments outside of Saudi Arabia but they're pretty helpless to stop this.
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:45 AM   #6
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there will be no peace treaty in this war... there will be no surrender... even after al qaeda is gone, hamas is gone, you can never stop one man from packing himself full of explosives and getting on a bus, like what happened this morning in israel. this is a war that may never be fully over, but damn it it's a war we have to fight.
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
But I think you can create conditions so that the - those who use terror as a tool - are less acceptable in parts of the world
exactly! for example by not supporting terrorists anymore just because they work against governments we don't like.
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Old 08-31-2004, 10:53 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer
Peace is guaranteed through liberty, when the world is free all of humanity can move forward together and united.
many people have nothing to gain by being free

if you're free and shit poor then you're still shit poor

some people will embrace their freedom and take being poor for granted
others won't


we have many steps to go to achieve unity among human kind
we're divided in so many ways that it is an illusion to believe that we will achieve much if anything by focussing on one aspect
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Old 08-31-2004, 11:02 AM   #9
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Hey RockNRawlDoggie,

You say that since the war on terror is not completely winnable therefore the troops should come home now.
Would you also advocate stopping AIDS relief to Africa since the war on AIDS is not completely winnable? Would you advocate ceasing drug prevention programs since the war on illegal drugs is not completely winnable? Would you advocate closing down homeless shelters since the war on poverty is not completely winnable?
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Old 08-31-2004, 11:48 AM   #10
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I completely agree with you Salome...

On another note;


Humans are selfish, scared, emotionally driven, reactionary animals.

The vast majority of human beings are uneducated.

The 'western' views and way of life are in the minority.

Humans are far from civilized.

Technology has only made violence and destruction easier.

Terrorism has many shapes, and has been used by our own 'western' governments.

Nuclear war will be started by a non-state.

The cock roaches will still be here after we're gone.



Unless you can find a way to convince all 6 billion of us to think, feel, and respect life the same way.... I hardly doubt any of this will ever change.

I'm not trying to be negative... just realistic.
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Old 08-31-2004, 11:52 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Headache in a Suitcase
even after al qaeda is gone, hamas is gone, you can never stop one man from packing himself full of explosives and getting on a bus, like what happened this morning in israel.
dont forget about oklahoma...
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Old 08-31-2004, 12:33 PM   #12
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Hamas is in Oklahoma??
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Old 08-31-2004, 05:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Elvis


The cock roaches will still be here after we're gone.

and Keith Richards.
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Old 08-31-2004, 07:34 PM   #14
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Humans are often selfless, brave, spiritually driven, highly evolved animals.

The number of humans currently educated in the world is the highest it has ever been in history. If the pace of the 20th century is continued, virtually no one will be uneducated a couple of centuries from now.

The Western views and way of life is in the plurality and will be the majority by the end of this century at the current rate of globalism. Not even a place like Cambodia is isolated from this as my sister who just returned from there can confirm.

Humans are the most civilized known life form in the Universe.

Technology has vastly increased the means by which citizens and countries can prevent or stop violence and destruction.

Terrorism is not a term that can be used to describe any political action or action that involves violence. No other group of countries has done more to prevent and stop terrorism worldwide than "western" countries.

Nuclear War requires two states, a nuclear attack does not necessarily require a state.

Humans have something that other animals including T-Rex and the family never had, the ability to see the possibilities of the future and the power to shape the future.

The Vast majority of human beings are more alike than anyone thinks. What divides us are the systems, governments and cultures that often hold people back and prevent them from realizing their full potential and freedom.

Globalism is rapidly picking away at these problems and the opportunity for the average individual on the planet to realize his potential and dreams has never been this good although it is far from perfect. The world has become far more interdependent and closer over the past century. Dozens of new countries have come into existence and there are far more things that unite us than divide us compared to a 100 years ago.

If you told someone in famine racked 1840s Ireland that one day and Irish Musical band would be some of the richest people in the world and would tour places as far away as Australia, South Africa and South America, they would probably think you were the devil. Ireland today is the 3rd richest country in the world based on per capita GDP. In the late 1840s, it was the equilivant of Ethiopia in the 1980s. Unbelievable progress is possible and will happen. Realistically, that is what history shows.

Here's to the future!

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Old 08-31-2004, 08:23 PM   #15
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It's nice you can be optimistic, Sting. But some societies in this world are very conservative and closed, and have drastically different ways of looking at the world that probably aren't going to be influenced by the West anytime soon. These influences come in by way of the media, for the most part. They have no concept of "progress"; that's a concept that started during the Renaissance in Europe, and the only Muslim country that it's influenced is Turkey, and that was because of one man, Ataturk. Places like Syria and Iraq will be tougher nuts to crack because there's no one like that in those countries. I mean, hell, Sistani is more powerful in Iraq than Allawi is. That's not a good sign. Sistani is a product of the Shi'ite power system, what passes for social authority in that culture, as a Grand Ayatollah. When Allawi told al-Sadr to put his guns down he did not and got away with it, then Sistani told him to do it and now al-Sadr is planning a political career. I'm always thinking of complications in the development of a political situation and see various serious impediments that will be very difficult to overcome. It's the historian in me. I know, we drive everyone crazy.
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