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Re: (OT) Parking Lot

by mandog (Curate)
on Sep 12, 2001 at 18:46 UTC ( #111918=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re: The World Trade Center Tragedy
in thread The World Trade Center Tragedy

If evidence beyond a reasonable doubt proves that it is Bin-Landin who is responsible and if the Talaban continue to shelter him, the military option is considerably more complicated than "turning the country into a parking lot." The Russians shared a boarder with Afghanistan and spent 10 years using everything short of nuclear weapons. They never controlled more than major roads and larger cities. The United States had a similar experience in Vietnam.

Officially, most of the Islamic world is shocked and outraged at recent events. As a practical matter, much of the Islamic world believes that the United States and Israel have already committed crimes against them as bad or worse than the world trade canter bombing. This may not be objectively true, but it is only the perception that matters

If we were to invade Afghanistan, Pakistan is likely to use its border to enthusiastically support and supply the Talaban. There are other nations that would enthusiastically provide the supplies. A war with Afghanistan could take 10 years and require genocide to win.

Using enough nuclear weapons to achieve this genocide quickly is likely to kill tens of thousands of people in neighbouring countries.

If it comes to war with Afghanistan, it would be wise to treat the Talaban as the Germans and Japanese were treated after WWII.


Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re (tilly) 2: (OT) Parking Lot
by tilly (Archbishop) on Sep 12, 2001 at 20:33 UTC
    There shall be little similarity with either Vietnam or Russia's previous war with Afghanistan.

    Both of those were fought under the rules of the Cold War. Both were battles by a superpower which had little public support back home, little support from allies, and with opponents that were being funded and trained by powerful enemies that nobody dared fight directly.

    This time the US will go to war with full public support, along with the militaries of most of Europe and quite likely Russia. Any country strongly suspected of aiding and abetting our opponents will themselves become targets of war. That means that more force will be applied, we will be much more willing to take casualties, and whoever is targeted will quickly become isolated from potential support and supplies.

    For these reasons and more, I rather suspect a different outcome from the abortive police action that the US undertook in Vietnam...

Re: Re: (OT) Parking Lot
by gregor42 (Parson) on Sep 12, 2001 at 22:24 UTC
    If evidence beyond a reasonable doubt proves that it is Bin-Landin who is responsible and if the Talaban continue to shelter him, the military option is considerably more complicated than "turning the country into a parking lot."

    No indeed it does not have to be at all. It then simply becomes a case of me wanting to destroy the wasp's nest in your yard.

    You see, you can have that nest there & I respect your property line. Then say, my hypotheical child gets stung. Turns out he's allergic & I ask you to do something about it. You refuse, saying that they're good for your flower garden. Then a month later they're swarming for some reason & my child ends up in the hospital & I notice you in your front yard snickering while we drive away in the ambulance...

    Do you think that I'm going to ask permission to get rid of that nest now? Or do you think you'll find it in your mailbox, possibly next to your teeth?

    I think this is a fair metaphor. Yes, I could call the police & have them deal with the neighbor & then wait & wait until something gets done, meanwhile my child could be stung a few more times. Or I could go & get rid of the nest myself & not say anthing, which leaves a righteously disgruntled putz living next door, just waiting for the chance to get back at me. OR I could solve the problem once & for all.

    Let's spell it out. We're NOT going to have another Vietnam in Afganistan (if that ends up to be where we let loose the fury, as it appears now) since our objective will be different. The USSR was trying to OCCUPY Afganistan. All that we will want to do is what we did to Iraq, destroy their capacity for being a nuisance. We could accomplish most of that without ever landing on the ground.

    Wait! This isn't a Parachute, this is a Backpack!
      I decided to not to reply to gregor42's node stating that retaliation is a simple matter. This is a painful time. Arguing a point sometimes does little more than inflame the passons of the arguers. I woke up this morning to reports of attacks against innocent Muslims and changed my mind.

      I do not believe Gregor's metaphor is a fair one. A better metaphor would be to imagine that you live in a neighborhood of abandoned buildings inhabitated by people who have nothing. The large abandoned building next to you has no heat, light or plumbing, but dozens of men, women and children live there. Somebody does you serious injury. You toss a burning bottle of gasoline into the building at 3:00am.

      A ruthless, violent response may be what is required. This response should not be unthinking or indescriminate. Obliterting Afgainistan, (if this is even possible) will kill people who have don't even know the WFC exists


        I corrected a statement which implied that if a foreign power is harboring known terrorists responsible for known attacks, that there shouldn't be a simple strategy in dealing with them.

        This is an Act of War.

        If that foreign power will not take responsibility for taking control of it's constituents, or worse, shelters them, then they must be held responsible.

        I'm not saying that we need to bomb civilians. We actually possess the technology to avoid that. Because of that, suddenly we're not supposed to fight a war the same way? Carpet bombing was invented because once upon a time we couldn't aim the bombs. Now you can do more dammage with one laser guided 2000Lb bomb than with a dozen unguided ones. Our foes are obviously not in possession of the same degree of control & are most obviously unwilling to use restraint in attacking non-combatants.

        People may find this a difficult thing to swallow, what I'm about to say, but I see the Pentagon as a fair target. Not because I want ANYTHING to be a target, nor did those people deserve to die, or even for anyone to look at them cross-eyed...But, it's a military target. The plane full of civilians not withstanding, that at least adheres to international standards of 'civilized warfare'. (Has there EVER been a bigger oxymoron?) Somebody want to show me where the hidden bunker was below the WTC?

        I agree with you that anti-Moslem sentiment is wrong. But it could also be worse. During WWII we had our own concentration camps in this country, full of Japanese Americans. We're not seeing that today. Somehow I think even the Jewish community would stand up against that today.

        I am very sick & tired of reading post after post written by people with no stomach for war. Face it & suck it up. The world is a scary place. People don't like us. It is a sad state of affairs because our government does things we wouldn't agree with and have no clue about. So do the governments of other countries. If the people could interface without the boundaries & membranes artifically imposed upon us by them, maybe things would be better.... But then again, maybe NOT.

        I'm NOT happy about this & I don't HATE anyone... But obviously we need to respond in kind. Don't put words in my mouth.

        Wait! This isn't a Parachute, this is a Backpack!
Re: Re: (OT) Parking Lot
by one4k4 (Hermit) on Sep 14, 2001 at 19:28 UTC
    Out of curiosity. Pure curiosity. Do we (the US) support Israel because of industry or because a lot of our citizens are located in both Israel and the US? Akin to Puerto Rico and other close physically, but seperate countries? I'm just curious as to why Afganistan can feel like we're evil? For helping out a country that is pretty much an extension of the US itself? It sounds childish to me, but maybe I'm in a stage of shock, and I'm asking the "why" question now; it's been in my head for the past few days.

    I've been glum and just slow/down because of this, I cannot wait until this weekend to finally rest, be with my loved ones, and find out how my friends in the NYC are doing for sure.

    _14k4 - (
Re: Re: (OT) Parking Lot
by OzzyOsbourne (Chaplain) on Sep 12, 2001 at 19:12 UTC

    And I didn't say that we should turn it into a parking lot. But it is consistently discussed

    Your replies to this node in this tragic hour speaking of the justifications for why these people attacked and how we should rethink our viewpoint sicken me. To you, battered wives bring it on themselves. Maybe we should step down and lock up, and let the world fend for itself. Let the Hitlers and The Stalins, etc to take over.

    I am disgusted. I am disgusted with the thought that killing of innocent citizens is justified. I am disgusted that without the US, the world would be a parking lot. I am disgusted that people with their hands out can justify this attack. And disgusted that you can look at it in this light. I am disgusted with your replies.

    I'm inviting the negative XP for sure, but I can't believe in a community that thinks this way.

    To not act with extreme prejudice in a situation like this only invites more actions. More loss of life. And if it can happen in the US, it can happen in any country. It won't cripple our economy (and the worlds economy), for we have numerous financial centers, but it could cripple theirs. By not responding, we jeopordize the world.

    I didn't say it before, but whoever the assailants are, they should be turned into a parking lot. The retibution should be so fierce as to discourage this action from ever happening again. I'm sure my 2 NY friends (who I hear are still in shock) would agree that this should never re occur.

    Vote this down a million XP. Vote down all of my nodes if you must. I am disgusted, and I don't care. I have never shed a tear for someone that I did not know until today

    THOUSANDS of rescue workers, firefighters, EMTs, and normal people just like you are dead. And someone got away with it.

    Not America, but the Western way of life has been attacked, viciously, on it's own soil.

    I think that is the biggest deal in the last 50 years.


      He did not say they were justified.

      He said that they thought that they were justified. They thought this because of decades of watching the US routinely destabilize governments, train their enemies, sell arms to both sides in wars to collect the profits, etc, etc, etc.

      Please, before you get angry at me, consider this very carefully. There are a billion people in the world today who hate the USA with their very hearts and souls. I, a fellow American, am telling you that this is not an accident, it is an inevitable outcome of routine outrages that the US perpetrates. The US activities are not to blame (I hate the concept of blame, it causes people to stop thinking far too soon), but the US actions made something like this very predictable.

      The US at this point will react. Has no choice but to react. With a reaction completely out of proportion with what was done to us. (We lost a few thousand people. Millions will die for this. At this point the main issue is deciding which millions of people will die, but die they will.) In fact the US has little choice but to so react, if it doesn't give the expected reaction then it will become a far bigger target that it has been. And, after all, there are a billion people who hate our guts who now have hope that we can be hurt and hurt badly.

      However once we react, I sincerely hope that back at home people take a further step and decide that we shall not carry on with politics as usual. Because if we do then this will happen again. Not next year. Not in the next 10 years. But it will happen, and once again the result will be tragically predictable.

        As usually, I agree with you, tilly.

        I am not american ( I would like to be), but I share with many milions of people around the globe the spirit of America: free country, country blessed with many extremely talented people (many of them immigrants), the way how system of democratic government and free economy should be build, and everybody should get fair chance. As example of country worth to follow. Example of how to build our own government.

        (I know that it is partly naive, that american democracy has own share of problems - but still US problems are far better than in other countries...)

        So I was also shocked when I heard about crashed planes - I visualized for myself small Cessna with a small bomb. I realized all the horror only hours later - and it did not sinked in yet. It's numb inside - I cannot understand this, because it does not make any sense.

        Now, as a programmer I think: how tis happend, what went wrong, and how to prevent it?

        What if some muslim extremists are the culprit. There are 1.2 Bilion muslims, and 99.99% of them do not support this horrible act and are sorry for america. If USA will hurt many thousands of innocent civilians, what will be the result? Enough support for 0.001% of remaining terorists to repeat this many times - now they know how to cheaply, low tech hurt USA (couple of knives are all you need and with proper trainig, you can do it with just bare hands).

        I agree that USA should retaliate - and probably one of the reasons why this happened is that USA did not finished decisive action in Gulf War, and in many other occasions, so enemies of USA was misled to think it is a weak pacifist country and is afraid to hurt them back. And I understand why USA was reluctant to hurt them back: because US poeople strongly believe in sanctity of human life, any human being of any religion, and this believe is part of "spirit of america" and all the good what is in it.

        Some people do not believe in sanctity of life of any human being, and for them kamikadze-style suicide might be a solution for own failed life, which (guided by spiritual macchiavelian guide) may even clear all percieved sins. There will always be these despareate people, and other machiavalian guides ready and able to train them. The worse and more inhuman will be USA's response, the better for the extremists: the more desparates will turn in. We confirmed this many times in recent history in too many countries.

        If you want to shoot at a bear, you should be damned sure you will kill him.

        I know it will not be easy, but IMVHO the only solution is to try to understand what made these people so desperate that they decided to do what they did. How to make these people so scarce that they will not meet each other, they will be lonely wolves without support group, not able to accomplish something as bad.

        USA plans to spend $100 Billions for missile defense. 9/11 just proved how inadequate it is to prevent harm to US people. What if these money will be spent to build school and well with clean water and hospital in every village ot the countries of third world?

        USA know marketing and should be better in. One cannot push love down somebody's throat. And I know this is exactly what will be very hard to sell to americam public right now. It will be chalenge of leadership. And I am sorry to say, current leadership most likely will look at the issue not from point of view of international responsibility.

        Remember one of the Murphy's laws:
        Every complicated, hard to sumarize problem has one simple, easy to explain WRONG solution. And is looking for a person in charge to deliver it.

        I hope I am wrong. I wish we could solve perl problems instead. But I am scared what will happen next.

        We just seen horible prove that violence does not have any sense, it is not an answer - it is another (wrong) question.

        I heard many times that we inherited our planet from our parents. That is not true: we borrowed it from our children. We need to act in the way it makes sense to them, 100 years from now, or we fail the trust they have to us.

        I am hoping I am wrong and America will find inner strength and little luck to have right person in right place (as it did many times in history) to do "hard right over the easy wrong". Unfortunatelly, this was in the platform ot the other candidate...

        To make errors is human. But to make million errors per second, you need a computer.

        tilly is 110% correct in this. The US has had a hand in creating and destroying nearly every single government (other than ours and NATO's) in the last 50 years.

        However, I do have to disagree with one thing he said. This will happen, again and again, until one of three things happen:

        1. We change the way we think and convince everyone else we have truly changed
        2. Those who want to kill us are dead ... every last one
        3. We are dead ... every last one ... or the USA has dissolved, most likely into a Balkanization
        I hope for the first, fear the second, and expect the third.

        We are the carpenters and bricklayers of the Information Age.

        Don't go borrowing trouble. For programmers, this means Worry only about what you need to implement.

      I am sorry for your anger and your pain and for the contribution my last post has made to your anger and pain.

      Whether it was your intention or not, expressing the desire to turn another country into a parking lot amounts to expressing the desire to kill many innocent people. We have all done or said things in anger that we have bitterly regretted.

      The point I am ineptly trying to make was that atrocity spawns atrocity. This was a horrible, evil thing. Yes, some kind of violence is probably the appropriate response. No, we should not blindly slaughter more innocents in response because this is the only thing we have the power to do.

      Perhaps it is best to keep this thread as a place for people to share their pain.


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