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Old 07-22-2004, 11:13 PM   #31
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man, a wanderer is so right wing it makes STING look liberal.

I personally find the ideas of trading in liberties and defending violence scary, even if you think the violence is helpful to maintain 'freedom'

I have no problem imagining the US as a orwellian society. I'd guess that if they held a vote now to legislate a whole lot more power into the hands of the government, it might pass. (well...something like the patriot act I suppose) I wonder just how far the majority of voters would go with trading liberites. I find it incredibly scary.

I have much more respect for people like gandi who will never raise a hand in violence, even knowing that it could kill them, than for people like Bush and many hardline conservatives.

I think if you give up your rights as a free human to any government for this faux 'fight terrorism' cause, than - to use a cliche - 'the terrorists have already won'
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Old 07-22-2004, 11:30 PM   #32
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It is a fact that a balance must be struck between security and liberties, I am not proposing a Deus Ex style police state with a UNATCO running around, I am saying that things were a little too loose in the leadup to 9/11 and following that reforms need to be made that ensure a similar tragedy can be averted. I am not a right winger by aby stretch of the imagination, I am a liberal who was mugged by 9/11 and does not want to see the same mistakes made again, simple and minor counter terrorism measures can be put in place that do not rob people of their individual liberties, Israel has lived with the treat of terrorism for decades and they have retained a pluralist open democratic society, we are in a simmilar situation and increasing security (which inevitably costs some liberties, I am no longer allowed to buy 2 tonnes of Ammonium Nitrate unless I can verify the purpose but thats no skin off my nose) is the best course of action to take and I would rather see these measures be discussed in an open and transparent manner by elected representatives than behind closed doors and imposed on us against our will.

Basstrap can you please explain to me what this "Faux Fight Terror" cause is, You are aware that there are people out there who genuinely desire to see the western world attacked majorly out of an ideological cause. These people have attacked before and since 9/11 and the exponential escalation of this means people should be protected. What the hell do you think 9/11 was?

Ghandi was smart because he knew that if the British got enough negative press then they would leave without too much of a fuss and it worked supremely, the difference is that when you are dealing with Ideological Terrorists like Bin Laden they don't worry about bad press. They commit mass murder as well as individual barbarities (for example keeping a human head in a freezer as a trophy of a kill), they will never stop until either the civilized world is transformed into a subject of a grand Islamic power or they themselves are wiped out, I prefer the second option.
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Old 07-22-2004, 11:46 PM   #33
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer

Basstrap can you please explain to me what this "Faux Fight Terror" cause is, You are aware that there are people out there who genuinely desire to see the western world attacked majorly out of an ideological cause. These people have attacked before and since 9/11 and the exponential escalation of this means people should be protected. What the hell do you think 9/11 was?

I'm not saying there is no threat of terrorism. And I don't want to undermine what happened on 9/11

I'm saying it's not a good enough cause do disarm liberties.
There has always been terrorism, there always will be. Do you want to live in your current state of fear and paranoia for the rest of your life? do you want your children and your childrens children to have their bags searched if they go out to demonstrate. By then, it'll much likely have gone much further, who knows who they'll be searching in 40 years?

I think there comes a point when you have to risk hurt and death for the sake of living without fear or giving up your rights
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Old 07-23-2004, 12:06 AM   #34
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Well what is a good enough cause, WW2 was an example where many liberties were sacrificed to fight the good fight for freedom in the world, the Cold War saw many more liberties snatched away than I would comprehend being required to be sacrificed in this War on Terror. In any fight countries have to sacrifice and this is no different. I will openly say that we will be sacrificing some of our liberties in exchange for security because that is what always happens, I think any intelligent person would rather see this played out in an open manner than see it left in the hands of the executive alone. This is a big fight and it will take a long time to win, dealing with the treat from terrorism demands that some liberties will be sacrificed so that security can be increased. Maximum security for minimum sacrfice is the name of the game and finding the right balance involves acknowledging the threat and then coming up with agreeable ways of dealing with it.

I do not get this whole state of fear shit that people spout, I am not afraid of Bin Laden, I think we should rise to the challenge of terrorism and say hey Osama watch as we go on and spread freedom to the world and fight you and your ideology while retaining the spirit that makes Western Civilization so damn great, that is the ultimate Fuck You to give to terrorists and it makes me proud for humanity whenever people stand up and show solidarity against the authoritarian system Bin Laden and his ilk desire..

It is those that now live in fear of their own democratic governments that are hysterical, you are the ones that try to block out the real and looming threat by blaming it all on the government rather than the terrorist and inventing elaborate conspiracys to explain away what is happening in the world (Michael Moores latest movie is a testament to that). We live with more individual freedoms today than during any war of this scope in history. Could anybody imagine a movie that shows FDR had connections to the Japanese and Germans being given a massive release and press coverage during WW2, or books openly criticizing the government becoming bestsellers - these facts all point that we are not loosing our freedoms. They are all there, freedom to question your govenment, the right to elect your representatives, right of protest and nobody is proposing that they be taken away.

Some Basic Truths:
1) We are not living in some sort of society pre-facism
2) The Government has a duty to protect its citizens
3) You can fight terror and keep people safe and at the same time retain freedom, Case in Point is Israel, an example of how a moral society protects itself from terror should be used as a template for the rest of us to follow.

The sodding point is we will sacrifice, lets do this properly and discuss what should be done openly so that the checks and balances for this change is not left in the hands of the few. By living in fantasy land where the sole purpose of all these changes becomes the governments desires for authoritarianism it guarantees that nobody will listen to you and your opinion will be ignored by those in power.
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Old 07-23-2004, 12:17 AM   #35
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sorry, I don't buy it.

I know they're bad people.
but I'm not sold on the whole bruce willis smoke em out and fuck em up campaign.

if you don't see the 'state of fear', than I'm sorry you're blind.

everybody is scared shitless, many are just masking it under the 'fight terrorism' cause *patriotic music, american flag waving gently in the wind...eagle flies by*

the division is purely partisan I'm sure. You'll have people like me who aren't afraid and don't wish to go running around like chickens with our heads cut off because some people hate me.
and people like you who ARE afraid on some level, therefore you wanna go give em hell until, apparently, they're all dead
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Old 07-23-2004, 12:43 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer

I do not get this whole state of fear shit that people spout, I am not afraid of Bin Laden, I think we should rise to the challenge of terrorism and say hey Osama watch as we go on and spread freedom to the world and fight you and your ideology while retaining the spirit that makes Western Civilization so damn great, that is the ultimate Fuck You to give to terrorists and it makes me proud for humanity whenever people stand up and show solidarity against the authoritarian system Bin Laden and his ilk desire..

You aren't afraid?! That's a laugh. I think out of anyone on this board you are the most scared because you are so paranoid that some terrorist will discuise themselves as demonstrators, that you're in a tiraid about people not losing their civil liberties. You want to people to lose privacy to make yourself feel safer. If you need this to feel safer, you are scared. No two ways about it.
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Old 07-23-2004, 12:45 AM   #37
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It does not seem well thought through, however, as a "solution" to terrorism.
Yes, bombs are a much better thought out solution...I think that's what Jesus taught us.
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Old 07-23-2004, 01:08 AM   #38
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I am not blind I simply go out and look at all sides of the problem, if you cannot reciognize the danger that purely ideologically motivated terrorists pose to Western Civilization at large you are blind. Go out and read Bin Ladens speeches and learn about his ideological motivations, what types of aims he has, he is just one part of a much larger problem which stems from Islamic society. Find out about the history of Islamic terrorism and look at the way it has grown from small scale hijacking to massive attacks, the casualties and scale of the attacks is exponential and unless common sense measures are taken to protect against terrorism then eventually an attack of truly horrific scale will take place and will wake you people up. I once thought that 9/11 was a great oppertunity to deal with the threat but it is quite clear that many would still rather stick their heads in the sand and not look at who the real enemies are and parrot about being victims of the government whenever sensible actions are taken. Can you please outline to me what this culture of fear is, I do not buy into it and it seems to be another piece of the victim mentality that prevades modern "liberalism" (A shadow of the great political ideology of liberalism that is now called neoconservatism). I do not think that this is a strictly partisan issue, the problem stems from those that would rather see things go back to as they were before 9/11 and just "get on with our lives as if nothing had happened" to those that would rather adapt law enforcement to deal with a new type of threat.

I want to give Bin Laden hell yes, I would like to see well planned operations to capture top officials of terrorist networks. At the same time I would like to see change occur in the Middle East, It is not the west that created Islamism in its current iteration it was the changing condition of the Islamic world following the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire and subsequent establishment of authoritarian nationalist dictatorships. If we introduce a competing political system then change will occur and their desire to see the world put back to the 7th century will have no chance of success and the political movement they inspired just like Facism and Communism will collapse.

Did Winston Churchill just lived in fear because he saw the threat from Nazi Germany as a grave threat to peace in Europe? There is a difference between acknowledging and understanding what we are facing and living in fear. People fear what they know nothing about, that is why you see imbeciles talk about "Dropping a Nuke of Mecca", Fighting against terrorism is about bringing political and social upheaval to a region devoid of it for so long, it is all about understanding the enemy and the way that they operate and calculating proper defence mechanisms.

Some ideas that I think are smart and would prevent terrorism without too much bother to people.
- Bulkheads on the cockpits of passenger planes, this was done by El Al and they havent had any successful hijackings.
- Allowing flight crews to have access to tasers so that in the event of an attempted hijacking disaster can be averted.
- Increasing the communication between the FBI and CIA, clearing out the beurocracy and transform them from Cold War Beurocracies to proper Crime Fighting Agencies.
- Intoduction of chemical sniffers at train stations to minimize the risk of a madrid style attack.
- Allowing the extension of the period of detention for terror suspects if there is a very serious threat, this would be done by going through the judicial system where the merits may be weighed up by an independent party.

These are just a few off the top of my head but they would not drastically alter the way we live our every day lives and they would protect citizens.

What I think is too far
- National ID Cards, they would give the government too much interference into peoples lives.
- Blanket surveillance of all electronic communications. This is wrong because it is unwarranted interference into peoples lives.
- Detention of terror suspects in secret and without trial for extended periods (here it gets tricky because Gitmo deals with foreign terrorists, I think the process to deal with them must be reformed greatly but as it stands people know who is detained and where and the entire process is overseen by the government as well as NGO's).
- Internment of high risk individuals, I would be very worried that if following another attack all muslim men aged between 14 and 55 were taken away and locked up.
- Censorship of the media to deny terrorist attackes attention.
- Suspending of elections due to terror risks.
- Systematic torture as a means of interrogation (I say systematic because in very particular ticking time bomb cases I think that judicial or executive sanctioned non-lethal and non-permanent damage torture such as drilling teeth or using a sterilized needle can be justified, that in itself deserves its own thread but in the vast 99.9999% of possible scenarios torture is a no go area).
- The use of Cable TV guys and other individuals as part of a domestic intelligence program.
- Making it illegal to question the government.
- The creation of a secret police that are not held to account.

The list there goes on but I think it is clear these things must be openly debated. Things were not as free in the Cold War as they were in the 1990's and today we have to adapt again to deal with a new threat. It is like a set of scales with liberties and security, finding the right balance and discussing it openly it what ensures that Western Democracies continue to retain those values that we hold dear, I am not a facist or a right wing super patriotic nutjob, I am an Australian atheist and I have no great liking of patriotism because it seems to be a bunch of nationalistic myth used to justify anything who has spent a lot of time in the past 3 years learing about the history of Islamic terrorism and about ways different countries have fought it at different times. I think that Bush oversimplifies the issues and the core problems remain untouched and I also think that you have to look at everything that can possibly be done and work out a proper strategy to deal with the problem even if it involves investigating and/or contemplating scenarios that have difficult solutions.

EDIT
I do not want people to just loose their privacy in the name of "counter terrorism" there is absolutely no bleeding point to that, what I am saying however is that things were too bloody loose in the lead up to the terrorist attacks and a few (Read it, A FEW, not all, not most, not some - A few!!) liberties will be sacrificed in the name of security. I am totally opposed to additional government interference in peoples lives, I do not want to see them document peoples correspondances and phone calls I simply desire to see the holes in security patched up. We now have the 9/11 comission report on the attacks and they show holes, they allowed these guys to slip through the net, they allowed the flight training school reports to go unheeded and they didn't listen hard enough to what Bin Laden was saying. We know these mistakes were made and I just think that they should be ammended so the same thing cannot happen again.

No perpetual war, No Big Brother government, No Echelon, No racial segregation, No spying on law abiding citizens, No for travel permits, No Cameras on every street corner, No monitoring of peoples internet useage, No picking individuals off the streets on the basis of heresay, No extremist bans on religious expression.

Yes strengthen security at places of transit and large events, Yes spend more money on the CIA and get them to put more Human Intelligence assets on the ground, Yes for people living their lives freely and not having restirctions on where they can and cannot go. Yes to personal freedoms and giving people the right to live their lives without the fear of violence, by taking simple measures that threat is minimized - I would be more scared of a government that did not put the welfare of its citizens than one that left them in a state of ignorant bliss until the next disaster occured.

I bloody well try to make a point and say that things are not the same as they used to be and I am condemned as a paranoid "everybody is a potential terrorist" nutjob, for shame, the potential damage of a terrorist attack with Weapons of Mass Destruction is too large a danger to just make fun of, it is important and each and every one of us should consider in an intelligent and though out way what should be done. It is the stated intention of Osama Bin Laden to bring large scale terror to the west, the Islamist terror networks have a long history of attempting to obtain these weapons and when they do how we treat the threat will determine the result. I would rather have my intelligence agency pickup a source and work its way into the plot then foil it than live to see a nuclear device go off at a major event, I am not paranoid jumping up and down in hysterics about this threat as many here seem to characterise, I am not masking my fear under a blanket of "Good Guys Always Win" I say again these people will not stop until we are all dead, they can do it from a distance using bombs or they can just eviscerate hostages, I do not want to see this happen to any more innocent people and that is why I think straightforward means should be put in place to minimize the risk localy and globally we work to undo their cause and remove the state sponsership.
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Old 07-23-2004, 01:34 AM   #39
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A_Wanderer, the list of things you are against is interesting.
What do you think of the US Patriot Act?
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Old 07-23-2004, 01:35 AM   #40
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I find your lists reasonable, actually. Thought I am hesitant about tasers. Once it became known they carried these weapons terrorists would have new ways of arming themselves by simply taking them unawares,

no weapons on a plane is best

Nothing you mentioned really makes my skin crawl. the patriot act does though.

and don't you realize that as long as we make war in the middle east people there will always hate us? Our wars will be breeding grounds of hate. 'look at those westerners always invading us.'
as long as we fight there there will always be new lessons for seasoned terrorists to teach new comers.
Catching leaders will also do nothing, other than maybe send the group into hiding until they have a new leader

I honestly don't see the help in war.
what is the point?
to erect a fragile democracy?
We will never see a stable democracy in these countries in our lifetimes. At least not via the means of war brought in from the outside.

the strongest and most stable democracies created from dictatorships are those formed through internal revolution not from external invasion and pressure
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Old 07-23-2004, 02:06 AM   #41
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and don't you realize that as long as we make war in the middle east people there will always hate us? Our wars will be breeding grounds of hate. 'look at those westerners always invading us.'
See this opinion is pretty much baseless, the grudge that Al Qaeda has is with the governments that exist there and the fact we support them. They desire to see it transformed into a Wahhabist Superstate and they wish to achieve this by toppling unpopular governments and putting themselves as the only alternative. By working to bring true liberal democratic principles into the region by transforming Iraq (and this will take decades if ever) and showing the Arabs that we did not come there for imperial or colonialist reasons or to steal their oil it will gather good will in the region in the long run (Because the Middle East was not some sort of bastion of love for America before the Invasion of Iraq, they went from the Great Satan to the Slightly More Great Satan, don't kid yourself about the myth of the Arab Street being inflamed, its better to make a change for the better than leave them to stew in hatred). A strong democratic Iraq that works will also force other regimes to change, Jordan would accelerate political and economic reforms and once that occurs social change is inevitable (honour killings etc. would cease in a country where people embraced freedom and modernity) and eventually the entire region could become a trading partner with the rest of the world and could come to foster peace and understanding towards the Jews and the West, as it stands the region is just a terrorist producing factory and something must be done to change it.

Quote:
We will never see a stable democracy in these countries in our lifetimes. At least not via the means of war brought in from the outside.

the strongest and most stable democracies created from dictatorships are those formed through internal revolution not from external invasion and pressure
Now these two points are both based on the noble idea that peace and freedom cannot be brough through war and that the only way to have any stability is internal revolution, I say these are both flat wrong especially when dealing with Iraq.

Iraq did not have any internal resistance, Saddam's Baathist regime was firmly entrenched and rotting away and the people had no freedom. They just lived their lives in abject poverty being ruined by the dictator and tortured and killed by his police if they complained. The bones of the dead in the mass graves are the sole remainder of the internal revolution (now I blame Bush Snr. for this because he had to bow down to Arab demands not to push into Iraq proper, then telling the people to rise up but allowing the regime to use attack gunships in the south to quell them, a very bad decision), the only way was to invade and topple the dictator then build the country up again. This is what we are doing now and it can be done, the the former Yugoslavia millitary actions were able to bring about change and democracy, Iraq is different but still quite possible, it is wrong to believe that if we just leave the arab world alone we will be left alone, that is exactly what Osama desires, if we stopped engaging in the region then the possibility of toppling the regimes increases and so does the possibility of his outlandish political goals becoming a reality. By engaging and introducing a competing ideology we can deliver a knockout blow to terrorism.

External force was the only thing that could remove the regime and it is the best hope for peace and democracy these people can ever get. The alternatives would always result in greater bloodshed or the creation of global problems (Internal Collapse results in Civil War, Qusay takes power costing even more lives over another 30 years, Iran invades Iraq to annex the Southern Oil Fields etc. they all result in hundreds of thousands of deaths).

Can you think about how many internalm revolutions have brought about peaceful democracy as opposed to the number that bring about violence and opression, the fact is that internal revolution is a much more violent and bloody affair that does not resolve the problems nearly as well as a strong millitary force that can eliminate threats to a democratic system and prevent the new state from collapsing.

I find that the patriot act is a haphazard and dangerous way to fight terorism. These measures just give the illusion of security the only way you are going to have a solid chance is if you investigate your mistakes and then make the changes after you have the facts, not the 9/11 comission has released its report I would hope Bush could take the top Civil Rights lawyers, Law Enforcement officials, Government Beurocrats etc. and get them to come up with a model for dealing with the threat, this would take time which unfortunately is not something you take for granted when there are problems in a system.

I still think tasers are a good idea, they would furthur reduce the threat because even if a group of armed men could get aboard they could be subdued quickly and without major risk to the passengers, the only other major alternative is once a plane has been hijacked is to shoot it down killing hundreds of innocent people to avert a potential disaster, see why I think we shouldn't be so quick to rule out some courses of action.

A very good article about the effect of a 300 Kiloton nuckear detonation in Washington may give you guys an idea of how dangerous these weapons are in the wrong hands.
http://www.thebulletin.org/issues/20.../jf04eden.html
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Old 07-23-2004, 04:15 AM   #42
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A very good article about the effect of a 300 Kiloton nuckear detonation in Washington may give you guys an idea of how dangerous these weapons are in the wrong hands.
If you think about it what can be done with such a bomb i don't think that any human should have such a powerful destructive weapon
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Old 07-23-2004, 06:02 AM   #43
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Such a weapon shouldnt exist, I don't like the threat of nuclear annihilation hanging over my head however the fact is that it does exist and if somebody desires one enough and has the resources then they can obtain one, risk minimization is key.
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Old 07-23-2004, 08:00 AM   #44
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A_Wanderer:
right, this knowledge is especially scarry if you look at the news about the latest Los Alamos National Laboratory scandal
While they want to bomb the shit out of countries who might give that might give that technology to others the terrorists might allready have access to their technolgogy because of weak security in their own labs
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Old 07-23-2004, 08:07 AM   #45
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Los Alamos is a problem but just think if that can happen at a US institution imagine how nuclear proliferation is going from Russia to Pakistan, they can barely lock it up at the best of times and these days there are enough smugglers and terrorsts with the right connections. Quadeer Khans revalations about a global trade is just the tip of a very big and dangerous iceberg that I think we will see the effects of in the next decade.
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