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Getting On : All My Politics

Abuse of Iraqi prisoners

from Shaka - Friday, May 07, 2004
accessed 17638 times

Is it so surprising?

There has been widespread condemnation of the U.S. Army after photos of humiliation and abuse of Iraqi prisoners were aired on TV. While these acts were definitely wrong, I wonder if they should surprise us. It seems that with the release of these photos people have already forgotten about the murder and mutilation of American civilians in Fallujah. We are going to hear from whining Iraqis claiming abuse for months to come, but has everyone forgotten so soon that they burned the corpses of our civilians, dragged them through the streets, and hung them from a bridge while cheering and dancing on videotape? And these complaints come from a people who just a year ago lived in a nation where worse acts of torture and humiliation were the norm. Has everyone forgotten about the escapades of Sadaam and his barbaric sons? Some of these idiots are now saying they were better off under Sadaam. America holds itself up as a symbol of freedom for the rest of the world so when mistakes are made by some of it’s citizens, all the heinous acts and years of murder of a brutal regime are thrown out the window and forgotten. What would happen if footage were shot of American soldiers dancing and cheering around the bodies of terrorists? We would never live it down as we probably will never live this down.

Our soldiers are attacked every day. They live in constant fear for their lives and the lives of their friends. Nobody seems to care anymore that terrorist suicide attacks kill Americans daily and about 30 times as many Iraqis. No one should be surprised that some of them lose it and behave badly toward captured people who, if free, would do everything in their power to see them dead and the goal we are trying to achieve in Iraq destroyed. To ask that our troops remain calm and civil toward people who want them dead is demanding sainthood. These cries are coming from citizens of a country that routinely tortured its prisoners and free men alike. What do they have to complain about? This is also a perfect opportunity for our enemies to falsify stories of abuse that will further anger Iraqis and further destabilize the country. We are going to see every disease ridden Iraqi and his uncle Rashid come crawling out the woodwork claiming abuse. The double standard of the Muslim world is astounding. They want us to behave like saints in our dealings with their people when they treat each other and us without even a shred of human decency. Their ridiculous policy of demanding perfection and immediate solutions while escalating attacks against us is insane. And they want us to treat them with respect when we capture their sorry asses. Thoughts, anyone?

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from Baxter
Thursday, May 20, 2004 - 13:16

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

And what's the deal with the USAF? What was it this time, another 40 civilians dead? You could have picked a more sensible target ie. OTHER THAN A WEDDING PROCESSION!

No wonder the US Army knicknamed them the 'American Luftwaffe' during the second world war. If they're not hitting their own men, they're hitting their allies; if they're not hitting their allies, they're wasting civilians.



(reply to this comment)

From exister
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 16:02

(Agree/Disagree?)

Hey man, they just get coordinates and light them up. Blame it on the oxymoronic "military intelligence."

Go USAF!(reply to this comment

From sarafina
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 13:32

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes that was bad, although it was a bit stupid of them to be shooting off gun fire in the air in the middle of the night(even if it was a celebration) in the middle of a war. I mean where is the common sense in that?(reply to this comment
From Baxter
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 14:16

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

It's only the middle east, for fuck's sake! they shoot rounds in the air if the mail comes in on time! Doesn't mean it's a good idea to pop HEAT into 'em!

They just gave a 19 year old trooper in the household cavalry the George Cross for dragging his crew out of a burning tank and then sending the CASREP back for MEDEVAC. THe George Cross is one degree below the Victoria Cross; only trouble was, his tank was burning because an American A10 emptied his mag into the back of it! IFF? WTF! (reply to this comment

from Benz
Tuesday, May 18, 2004 - 18:29

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
The more paranoid and/or inquisitive of you may find this interesting:




The video tape and circumstances of the killing of Nick Berg seem fishier and fishier.

This article summarizes and lists 50 anomalies around Berg and his death.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------






Summary
A large number of anomalies surround the life and death of Nicholas Berg. A Jewish man, 26 years of age and a U.S. Citizen, he traveled alone in Iraq. Family and friends described Berg as an adventurer, high spirited and intelligent. A Washington Post report notes, "Berg was a weight lifting enthusiast and amateur comedian who had traveled abroad to help people improve their lives. Among his trips was a visit to the West African country of Ghana, where he taught villagers to make bricks and returned emaciated because he gave away most of his food."

Berg visited Iraq from December, 2003, to January, 2004, and then again starting March 14, 2004. Berg was purportedly looking for electrical contracting work building radio towers. He could not find work, though there was reportedly plenty.

On March 24, Iraqi officials arrested Berg at a checkpoint in Mosul and jailed him, because of his Jewish last name and the Israeli stamp in his passport. (See Washington Post report - reg req'd - or CSM Terrorism & Security update for May 13, which excerpts stories about Berg from various media.) Berg told friends in Baghdad that the Israelis thought he might be a spy. (See Telegraph article, "Beheaded American was arrested as a spy because of his Jewish name.") On April 05, 2004, the Bergs filed suit in federal court in Philadelphia, contending that their son was being held illegally by the U.S. military in Iraq. The next day, April 6, Nick Berg was released. On Saturday, May 8, Berg's body was found outside of Baghdad on a highway overpass. On May 11, 2004, a video of Nick Berg's execution, seemingly by beheading, was posted on the Muntada al-Ansar website, which is now offline.

There are conflicting reports about Berg's whereabouts in Iraq. According to an email to the Berg family from Beth A. Payne, a U.S. consular officer in Iraq, the U.S. military were holding Berg. This was apparently for 13 days. Iraqi police denied holding Berg. In contrast, the Telegraph article above notes, "Dan Senor, spokesman for the US-led coalition in Iraq, insisted Mr. Berg was arrested and held by Iraqi police." The timeline of Berg's captivity and the timing of the release of the video are suspicious. If Payne was correct, why did the U.S. military hold Nick Berg for two weeks? Why did the U.S. military deny this?

The video of the killing has many flaws including problems with time skips, audio dubbing, and the characteristics, appearance and speech of Berg and the killers. People from Middle Eastern cultures believe that Middle Eastern people were not involved in this video, based on the mannerisms, accents, behavior and appearance of the killers. A close inspection of the video suggests that Westerners may have been involved.

For a number of reasons, it does not appear that the Jordanian terrorist Abu Masab Al-Zaraqawi, who was voice identified by the CIA (and whose name was on the tape), was involved. He has a poorly functioning prosthetic leg and a hand tattoo, which should have been observed. Neither were. The accent of the speaker in the video was not Jordanian. Why has the CIA seemingly lied about the analysis of Al-Zarqawi's voice and his role in the killing?

Considering the many discrepancies and contradictions noted below, it seems possible that the Berg killing is a poorly crafted psy-ops exercise. This video was possibly constructed by U.S. operatives to impact the extremely volatile political developments in the U.S. and the international condemnation around the Abu Ghraib torture photos. The torture photos are mentioned in the speech in the video, though Berg may have been killed before the photos were circulated.

The majority of the points below are summarized and excerpted from eight summary articles that culled points from news articles and blog posts. (See links at end.) I compared, combined and edited the various points. Further, I added more points based on my viewing of the video (see Wizbang! Blog: Berg video site list) and by reviewing various news articles. I also added a few points based on comments at kuro5hin.org.

Some of the points below are compelling. Some are weak or may turn out to be insignificant or coincidental. This is a work in progress, an early overview of discrepancies. There are too many discrepancies and contradictions to dismiss doubts about the video and the official U.S. stories about Berg. Additional inquiry and fact checking are needed as the Berg story unfolds or, rather, unravels.

Points are included on these topics: Suspicious Circumstances and Timeline; Timing of Killing and Videotape Release; Videotape of Berg, His Decapitation, and Location; More Videotape Anomalies; Identity of Killers of Berg and Their Possessions; and, Berg's Previous Activities and Return of the Body

Suspicious Circumstances and Timeline

1) A Jewish man and U.S. citizen traveling alone in Iraq?
Why did a private Jewish American citizen choose to wander around Iraq by himself? He also had a passport stamp from Israel - very unsafe to travel with.

2) Berg wanted to return home
In his last email on April 6 to his family, Berg stated he wished to return home as soon as possible. The FBI claim he refused an offer of help to get home (perhaps because of danger to get to airport).

3) Three FBI visits
The FBI made three visits to the Berg while he was in custody in Iraq. This suggest U.S. authorities were concerned about more than Berg's well-being. They may have had their own suspicions about what the young American was doing in Iraq.

4) FreeRepublic website listed the Berg business as an "Enemy of the State".
Nick Berg's father, Michael Berg, signed an anti-war petition online and included the business name. (Note that Nick Berg himself was pro-Bush and pro-war.) This occurred a week before his son's second departure to Iraq. As a result of this statement the Berg business was put on a right wing enemies list. The FreeRepublic website listed the Berg business as an "Enemy of the State." This may have been linked to the thre visits by the FBI during Nick Berg's containment by the Iraqi Police and then presumably by (or under supervision) of the US Military.

5) Family sues in U.S. and Berg released next day in Iraq
On 5 April, Berg's family filed a suit in federal court in Philadelphia - contending that their son was being held illegally by the US military in Iraq. The next day he was released and left to get himself home.

6) U.S. custody
Berg's last known whereabouts was in U.S. custody. On April 1, Beth A. Payne, the U.S. consular officer in Iraq, sent an e-mail to the family of Nick Berg. It stated that Ms. Payne had located Nick, and he was currently in custody of the US military. She wrote, "I have confirmed that your son, Nick, is being detained by the U.S. military in Mosul. He is safe. He was picked up approximately one week ago. We will try to obtain additional information regarding his detention and a contact person you can communicate with directly." (See: The Unanswered Questions of Nick Berg's Murder at antiwar.com.) This is distinct from the next point...

7) Denial of custody
The US military has stated that Berg was never in US custody and that he had been in custody of the Iraqi police. The Iraqi police adamantly deny he was ever in their custody. (See again: The Unanswered Questions of Nick Berg's Murder.) If this is so, we have to conclude that either the email from Ms. Payne was incorrect or that the US military has been lying.

Apprehension of Berg
Berg was mysteriously captured while still wearing jumpsuit. Either he escaped from U.S. captors or U.S. let him out -- with orange suit and all -- to be immediately apprehended by "terrorists" (before he had a chance to change). Or, the captors somehow came across a U.S. military prison jumpsuit. (More on this is below.) This scenario contradicts the following:

9) Was Berg at hotel several days to April 10?
Staff at Al-Fanar Hotel in Baghdad apparently told The Associated Press that Berg stayed there for several days until April 10. A U.S. consul contract worker checked at the hotel on 4/14 and staff there did not remember Berg.

10) Family blames detainment by U.S. military for Berg's death
The last time the family heard from Nick Berg was on 9 April. He had planned to return home at the end of March. His headless body was found near Mosul on 8 May. "That's really what cost my son his life, the fact that the United States government saw fit to keep him in custody for 13 days without any of his due process or civil rights," Michael Berg said.

Timing of Killing and Videotape Release

11) Berg is killed before torture photos released but video tape refers to photos?
To quote "Fishy Circumstances and Flawed Timelines Surround American's Beheading)":
"me and a friend were discussing recent news events and trying to piece together the information presented to us, thought you might want to look into this further, they said in the news that Nicholas Berg was killed 2 weeks ago (i think), however in the video the culprits who killed him said they were "avenging iraqi prisoner abuse" but those photos weren't released until last week, so my question is how is that even a possible motive if he was killed prior to the abuse photos being released?? maybe i am misinformed but thought id ask the question to someone who would look into it."

12) Text with video mentions "shameful pictures"
The text posted to the website along with the video the translation of the Arabic statement, cites "shameful pictures." Here is a translation of the Arabic statement (at the Northeast Intelligence Network) made with the video: "And the shameful pictures and the news of the evil humiliation of the Islam people men and women in Ghareb 's father prison then where the jealousy and where the zeal and where the anger about the Allah's religion and where the jealousy for the Muslims sanctities and where the revenge for the honors of Muslims and Muslims is in the crosses prisons."

13) Wag the dog timing
There is extremely convenient 'wag the dog' timing at the height of furor regarding U.S. torture of Iraqis.

14) Torture photo timing
CNN poll question: 'Is the Berg killing a reason for withholding any remaining Iraq prisoner abuse pictures?' Bush has been reported to be struggling with question of whether the Pentagon should release additional torture photos. Given that the alleged decapitation of Berg was allegedly prompted by the first wave of torture photos, Bush could now cite 'national security' issues for withholding additional materials.

Videotape of Berg, His Decapitation, and Location

15) Orange jumpsuit
Berg shown in video wearing orange jumpsuit known to be of U.S. issue. The orange jump suit "appears" to be identical to the jumpsuits used at Guantanamo. (Compare with pictures at Guantanamo.) The orange jumpsuit was standard US military issue to men in custody. It is unlikely Berg would continue wearing a U.S. custodial uniform if he had been released by the military as they claim. The fact he was still wearing the suit is both anomalous and suggestive. One wonders: Was there an immediate transfer of Berg from the US military to unknown persons, preventing Berg from discarding his US prison garb?

16) No blood at decapitation
When Berg is decapitated, there was almost no blood. If Berg were still alive at this point, with the cut starting at front of throat, blood would have been spraying everywhere. Berg's severed head, the floor, Berg's clothes, and even the hand of the 'Arab' who decapitated Berg had no visible blood on it. When the executioner holds up Berg's head immediately following what is represented as an actual decapitation of a living person, there is no significant blood flow from the neck or blood splatters showing anywhere on the executioner.

17) Berg did not move
Berg seems limp just before the beheading. It is not clear if he was moving after the time skip in the tape. While on the ground, Berg's body didn't seem move except in response to the captors movements. Although held down, Berg would have tried to instinctively wiggle and writhe away from captor's grip and use of a knife. (That is unless he was long dead after the cut in the tape.) A surgeon would very likely testify that the beheading did not cause the death.

1 Berg may have been dead just before beheading
The lack of spurting blood and lack of movement suggests Berg was already dead at the time of the alleged decapitation. During the beheading, Berg's eyes are not seen. Camera angle made it impossible to see if Berg's eyes were open or glassy. Berg very probably was killed before the staged beheading. Did the captors have no stomach for the beheading of a living person?

19) Straight cut on the neck
The cut on Berg's neck seems to be too straight to have been done crudely and with such speed by a man wielding a large knife. Anybody who has carved a turkey knows there is something wrong with the supposed beheading. The suspended head looks more like Berg had been neatly beheaded by a guillotine.

20) Is the person in the video Berg?
Some viewers believe the person in the video only vaguely resembles Berg. (Note: presumably the family can and will identify Berg's voice and appearance.)

21) Chair
The chair that Berg was seated in during the filming was the exact same kind as seen in a color photo taken at the Abu Ghraib Prison. One blog mentioned this was "a standard issue military chair." However, these chairs might be abundant in Iraq. (See photo comparisons at link in next point.)

22) Walls and baseboard at the killing site same color as some in Abu Ghraid prison
However, many walls may be similar in Iraq. To quote Marc Perkel (It's The Same Chair!!!! OMFG!!):
"I have some more pics but the walls are the same yellow color and the baseboard is the same color as Abu Ghraib prison."

More Videotape Anomalies

23) The videotape was quite blurred.

24) A quickly disappearing video source?
A Reuters journalist in Dubai first named the Muntada al-Ansar al-Islami website as the source for the video - at www.al-ansar.biz. Although the site has now been shut down, Aljazeera.net had looked at the site within ninety minutes of the story breaking - and could find no such video footage. But Fox News, CNN and the BBC were all able to download the footage from the Arabic-only website and report the story within the hour.

25) Tape editing
The video tape is obviously spliced together and heavily edited: Going from a) Berg sitting in chair talking about family, to b) Berg sitting on floor with hooded "militants" behind, to c) blurry camera movement, to d) almost motionless Berg on floor as head cut off.

26) Long time jump in datestamp
There is a significant time jump on tape from a datestamp in the tape of about 2:44:40 to about 13:45:47. There could have been two cameras recording this event. However, there were changes in dress after the fact that would lead to the idea of an elapsed time.

27) Scream dubbed in: Screaming starts while Berg is not moving and before he is touched
Whatever the mismatch in the speaker and video (next point), videotape cognoscenti have said the scream was amateurishly dubbed into the tape. The writer of this K5 article reviewed this issue closely: The screaming starts (at 4:31 - on the copy I viewed, not the time stamp) about 5 to 6 seconds before Berg is touched (at 4:36) and he is moved to his side. He is just sitting there like a lump. While the screaming commences for (1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 seconds), his head doesn't move and his mouth doesn't appear to move (though the tape is blurry), nor does he seem to be physically screaming at any time. Yet the audio plays a loud vigorous screaming. The exact same dubbed screaming continues after the long time jump and a bit of a time gap with silence and after some cutting on the head, during which Berg is not moving. This screaming seems clearly dubbed and is highly incongruous with Berg's lack of activity.

2 Handling of papers on video
"Terrorist" reader flips through pages of 'statement' at one point. He keeps ending up on the same page for awhile. As noted below, this would very likely produce a gap in speech, which is out of sync with the smooth timing of the spoken statement.

29) Audio is dubbed: Tape of speaker and video are out of sync
Audio experts note the tape is clearly dubbed. The speaker recording is different from executioner video recording, due to lag between audio and video.
From "In the Absence of Truth from the White House, Conspiracy Theories Emerge About the Nick Berg Murder" at buzzflash.com:
"Analysis of Execution video -- I propose that the executioner's voice (according to my analysis of listening closely to the audio feed) is not that of the killer's. When listening to the executioner's voice on the tape one first notes that there is a 2-3 second lag in the "time" between audio and video, audio leading. This is consistent with the argument that the video camera and tape recorder are actually two different recording devices. What convinced me that the executioner could not be the "voice" behind the document, read prior to Nick Berg's execution, is the lack of consistency seen between the video and audio recordings, even if the 2-3 second delay is considered. A careful viewing of the video shows the executioner on "several occasions" fumbling with the 2 pages that he held, and at times reading the same page over again -- or so it appears. At least 4 times during the video the executioner is "turning over" pages, holding the pages "apart" as if confused, and all of this adds up to one conclusion. There should have been a "pause" or "2-3 second delay" in the reading of the documents during the physical handling of the documents -- but none is found that is long enough to account for it. Conclusion: The executioner is not "reading" the document. Someone else is. The executioner is trying his best to "lip sinc" the reading, but fails miserably on close inspection. The "smooth" reading of the document is entirely inconsistent (according my analysis of the video) and therefore cannot be the same person that is recording into the audio device."

30) Berg identification - why?
Berg goes to great trouble to identify himself, providing information about his family. Why? To elicit greater sympathy? Or to provide a positive ID. FBI visited Berg family in an attempt to 'verify his identity'. The guy in video looks little like Berg photos provided by family.

31) Woman's scream, instead of Berg?
The alleged scream on heard on the tape has been interpreted as a woman's scream by viewers. (The scream did not seem to this K5 article's author necessarily to be in a woman's voice.)

32) Mistranslation of Al Qaeda connection
On the first day of Nick Berg's execution, it was reported on several major news networks that al Qaeda was connected to the killer's statement, which turned out to be false. The US Intelligence translation still retains this "reference" to al Qaeda, which does not exist. The U.S. government translation of one statement made on the film is: "Does al Qaeda need any further excuses?" This is a falsification. The actual statement urged fellow insurgents to get off their hind ends and do something. One assumes the translator used by the US military is a native speaker of Arabic, so this may not be an innocent flub. Did the US government intentionally link an alleged al Qaeda group into the murder of Nick Berg? Note: the word on tape was al qaed, with quite a different meaning from al Qaeda.

Identity of Killers of Berg and Their Possessions

33) Western body posture and mannerisms of "terrorists"
The "terrorists" have Western-style body posture and mannerisms. They seem to be at parade rest at times.

34) "Terrorists" were fat
Several of the men in the film were fat by Iraqi standards. If they were Feyadeen or Mujahadeen, they probably have been living underground since the first days of the occupation. Tens of thousands of Iraqis have been shown on news stories as they have marched and demonstrated. One would be hard pressed to point out a single fat man among these thousands.

35) White hands of "terrorists"
Some of the "Arab terrorists" have pasty-white hands and (other exposed) skin. One would be hard pressed to find Arab men with pasty-white hands. (See: Nick Berg Conspiracy Theories Abound.)

36) Wrong accent
Al-Zarqawi is/was Jordinian. Arab linguists have said the man posing as Al-Zarqawi did not speak with a Jordanian dialect. Others have suggested the man reading the written statement may not have been a native speaker of Arabic.

37) Change in masks by beheader
To quote a K5 comment:
"The guy who holds up the head at the end has a white mask and no vest. The guy who pulls out the knife and starts cutting is in a black mask. The only guy with a white mask is wearing a green vest"

3 Voice id
Al-Zarqawi's identification by the CIA was based on "probable" voice id of the videotape.

39) Al-Zarqawi's missing leg
Al-Zarqawi was missing one leg. Al-Zarqawi allegedly wears a prosthetic device, according to previous CIA reports. (See: IHT Protrait of Al-Zarqawi.) There is no evidence that the killer wore a prosthetic device. Further, Al-Zarqawi had been outfitted with an artificial leg that did not fit or function properly. He was unable to walk or stand normally. No man in the group showed evidence of such infirmity.

40) Missing tattoos?
Large green tattooed "dots" are known to be on the back of Abu Musab Zarqawi's left hand. These tattoos cannot be seen in the close up video of the execution, though the back of his hand is fairly visible. (See: IHT Protrait of Al-Zarqawi.)

41) Al-Zarqawi dead?
Numerous indigenous sources have said Al-Zarqawi was killed by a US helicopter attack months ago when he was unable to move quickly enough to escape the targeted house. While others managed to exit the house in time to survive, he died in the collapsed building.

42) Gold ring on killer's hand
The man in the videotape who is purported to be Zarqawi seems to be wearing a gold ring. Note: This is a questionable point. To quote Healing Iraq (healingiraq.blogspot.com) as quoted at this angryfinger.org post (Nick Berg Conspiracy Theories Abound): "Islam does not specifically forbid that men wear gold, in fact the Quran and the Hadith have encouraged men to 'adorn' and 'embellish' themselves (dying hair, perfume, etc.) .... the practice of wearing gold ornaments is discouraged by Muslim clerics, "Gold is the ornament of women". Socially it is not acceptable in the Arab world for men to wear gold, although this has changed lately and many young men do (engagement and wedding rings are mostly gold)."

43) Why anonymous?
Al-Zarqawi's face is very well-known. If Al-Zarqawi was the perpetrator, why did he bother to cover it the whole time? If Al-Zarqawi is trying to build a resistance movement, why did he not uncover his face at some point? (If it was another terrorist impersonating Al-Zarqawi, why is the CIA identifying the voice as Al-Zarqawi's?)

44) Iraqi denial of "terrorists"
Iraqis who have seen the videotape on Arabic news broadcasts are universally saying the men in the film are not Iraqis. Are they saying this partly because the speaker does not employ an Iraqi dialect? Where does their certainty come from?

45) Firearms Israeli, not AK-47s
Firearms experts have stated the AK-47 carried by one man was a "Galil." This actually is an Israeli-made weapon that improves on the famous AK- 47. Feyadeen and other insurgents use AK-47s.

Berg's Activities and Return of the Body

46) Berg encountered Moussaoui, an al Qaeda operative, by chance in the U.S. in 1999
The FBI has reported (CNN, FOX) that Nick Berg's e-mail account was used by the "20th hijacker" of 9-11, Zacarious Moussaoui, whose computer held evidence of the 9-11 hijackers (and could not be searched by the FBI field office because of orders from Washington). The FBI interviewed Nick Berg about Moussaoui's use of his e-mail account to send "emails" but concluded that it was entirely "coincidental." Berg had apparently given the password to his e-mail account to an acquaintance of Moussaoui who he met on a bus in 1999 in Oklahoma. (See: Berg's encounter with 'terrorist' revealed.)

47) Berg's first visit to Iraq
Source: In the Absence of Truth from the White House, Conspiracy Theories Emerge About the Nick Berg Murder in http://www.buzzflash.com letters:
"In the Seattle Post-Intelligencer (Seattle P-I), May 13, 2004, A4, appeared an AP article by Robert H. Reid entitled: "Questions over beheading victim's travel in Iraq." That article, which is not online, says: "Berg first worked in Iraq in December and January and returned in March. He was inspecting communications facilities, some of which were destroyed in the war or by looters. During his time in Iraq, he worked on a tower in Abu Ghraib, site of the prison where U.S. soldiers abused Iraqi inmates."
And from The Guardian [Questions Surround Slain American in Iraq] here is a similar reference:
Perhaps Nick saw too much when he was at the prison repairing the tower. And/or maybe that work required close collaboration with the military intelligence onsite so that he learned too much.
Also, today's NY Times article entitled: "General Took Guantanamo Rules To Iraq for Handling of Prisoners" by Tim Golden and Eric Schmitt says:
"When Major General Geoffrey D. Miller arrived in Iraq last August with a team of military police and intelligence specialists, the group was confronted by chaos."
"In one prison yard, a detainee was being held in a scorching hot shipping container as punishment, one member of the team recalled. An important communications antenna stood broken and unrepaired."

4 Work vs. no work?
It has been reported all week in the media that Nick Berg was "looking for business" for his small telecommunications business. Some of his friends in Iraq who were interviewed reportedly said "business was booming." Yet others said Nick was leaving because he "couldn't find any work."

49) Berg traveled at night
It has been reported by people who knew Nick in Iraq (interviews, major networks) that strangely enough, Nick "traveled" at night. Indeed, when Nick was initially picked up by Iraqi Police (checkpoint) he was held because of "suspicious activity."

50) Berg's family was not allowed to view the body of Berg on its arrival to the U.S.

References

The Unanswered Questions of Nick Berg's Murder
by Anthony Gregory, antiwar.com, May 15, 2004

In the Absence of Truth from the White House, Conspiracy Theories Emerge About the Nick Berg Murder
buzzflash.com letters, May 14, 2004

Nick Berg's Iraq Timeline
at AngryFinger.org, May 13, 2004

Nick Berg Conspiracy Theories Abound
at AngryFinger.org, May 13, 2004

Fishy Circumstances and Flawed Timelines Surround American's Beheading
By Alex Jones, May 12, 2004

Fifteen Anomalies Surrounding Death of Nick Berg
from: What Really Happened.com Letters, May 14, 2004

It's The Same Chair!!!! OMFG!!
at Marc Perkel Rantz, May 13, 2004
(Note: The post by Perke has some good points but mixes in a number of clearly mistaken conclusions.)

Bloggers doubt Berg execution video
By Lawrence Smallman, May 13, 2004

List of Berg videos: Wizbang! Blog: Berg video site list

(reply to this comment)
from Incoherent babbling monkey
Monday, May 17, 2004 - 18:51

(Agree/Disagree?)
Personally ,I'm with Nelson Muntz on this one! 'NUKE THE WHALES!'
(reply to this comment)
from auslaender
Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 19:44

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Rumsfeld ordered it

To any of the binge posters out there who are still interested, a new piece in the New Yorker by Seymour Hersh claims that Rumsfeld ordered the abuse of Iraqi prisoners.

You can read the piece online at

http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/?040517fa_fact2

Has anyone figured out why we binge post for 2-3 days and then suddenly -- nothing! Someone oughtta write a paper.

cheers.


(reply to this comment)

From Ne Oublie
Sunday, May 16, 2004, 12:02

(Agree/Disagree?)
In my experience internet debates generally have a lifespan of a few days to a week, during which they are actively participated in. This one has lasted over a week already, which is not too bad considering.

Like Vicky said, most sides have been presented already, so unless a new theme is introduced I doubt the discussion will revive much.(reply to this comment
From Vicky
Sunday, May 16, 2004, 03:17

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Maybe it's because people have said what they want to say and don't feel there's any point to continuing the same arguments when obviously most people know what they think and arent't going to change their minds - I think it's great to hear all sides of the debate, but there does come a time when it begins to feel as if it's a bit of a waste of my time...(reply to this comment
From dave
Saturday, May 15, 2004, 21:09

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

And here is yet another article from The New Yorker wirting by Seymour Hersh that details exactly what Mr. Rumsfeld ordered, and how it was planned and executed by his right hand and Intelligence chief, Dr. Stephen Cambone. This article spells out the dirty truth about a black op that proved quite a success in Guantanamo and in Afghanistan, but went terribly wrong when applied in the Iraqi prison system:

http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/?040524fa_fact(reply to this comment

From ^
Saturday, May 15, 2004, 20:04

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Agree/Disagree?)
Sometimes the weekends are slow. Friday afternoon the lull starts.(reply to this comment
from Gregd
Saturday, May 15, 2004 - 06:27

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

When is it ever right to torture anyone? In the last week they've released a thousand or so prisoners from that prison because they' were guilty of nothing, despite humiliation and torture. Isn't the US trying to win the hearts and minds of the Arab world? What would you do if your brother or father was dragged off to prison and dehumanised? And you can't just lump all Muslim in heap. I would guess there are thousands of Muslims in the US army.

The US fights for right of free speech (and rightly so), but the mad right wing throws it's arms up in disgust and wraps itself in the flag ever time someone crictises the Military or George W.
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from Haunted
Friday, May 14, 2004 - 05:17

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Alrighty then, I just have to say Kudos to Shaka for this article, even though I completely dissagree with it (as I'm sure is obvious by now), it's been by far the most interesting and educated discussion on the board for quite some time. Cheers!

--- Haunted (aka "Pacifist"/"Liberal Pansy")
(reply to this comment)

From Shaka
Friday, May 14, 2004, 08:48

(Agree/Disagree?)
lol, thanks. And I've learned not to post something controversial unless I have more time to be part of the discussion afterwards. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Friday, May 14, 2004, 08:48

(Agree/Disagree?)
lol, thanks. And I've learned not to post something controversial unless I have more time to be part of the discussion afterwards. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Friday, May 14, 2004, 08:48

(Agree/Disagree?)
lol, thanks. And I've learned not to post something controversial unless I have more time to be part of the discussion afterwards. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Friday, May 14, 2004, 08:45

(Agree/Disagree?)
lol, thanks. And I've learned not to post something controversial unless I have more time to be part of the discussion afterwards. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Friday, May 14, 2004, 08:52

(Agree/Disagree?)
#@%^&!*&%##@!!!!(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Friday, May 14, 2004, 05:58

(Agree/Disagree?)
I'll second that ;)...I'm off for a swim! (reply to this comment
from Shackled
Thursday, May 13, 2004 - 22:02

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Abuse less shocking in light of history:

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=676&e=7&u=/usatoday/abuselessshockinginlightofhistory

I pulled out different parts from the article for those of you who don't have the time to read it. Naturally, the articles I'm pulling out are to support my opinion.

*****************************************************

One of the most surprising things about the abuse of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. soldiers is that so many Americans are surprised.

Decades of research and eons of history point to one conclusion: Under certain circumstances, most normal people will treat their fellow man with abnormal cruelty. The schoolboys' descent into barbarism in William Golding's classic The Lord of the Flies is fiction that contains a deeper truth.

Charles Figley, a Florida State University psychologist who studied the experiences of 1,000 U.S. soldiers in the Vietnam War, describes himself as "shocked about people being shocked" by the reports from Iraq

"About 25% of the vets I've talked to either participated in, witnessed, or were aware of violations of the Geneva Conventions" in Vietnam, he says.

President Bush (news - web sites) has called the alleged offenders a relative few whose actions "do not reflect the nature of the men and women who serve our country." Still, many Americans wonder how people described as kind and decent by the folks back home could lapse into such extraordinary behavior.

"It's not a few bad apples," he says. "It's the barrel that's bad. The barrel is war. That's what can corrupt, whether it's in My Lai or in Baghdad."

That might explain the actions of soldiers such as Lynndie England, so gentle back home in West Virginia that she wouldn't even shoot a deer on family hunting trips, or Sabrina Harman, whose mother says that when she found a bug in the house she'd release it outside.


It also raises the question: Were the American guards following orders or defying them?


The evidence is conflicting. Many families and other experts say they doubt the relatively unsophisticated reservists would come up with tactics that seemed specifically designed to humiliate Muslim men, such as stripping them naked and forcing them into homosexual poses.

School for scandal


Soldiers are not lab rats. But experts say that in retrospect, conditions at Abu Ghraib virtually assured a scandal. They point to the presence of some conditions - and the absence of others. The following appear to have been insufficient or deficient:


Training. The guards were reservists, most of whom had not been trained to work in a prison or internment camp, much less interrogate terrorists or prisoners of war. The 372nd Military Police Battalion was practiced mostly in traffic enforcement.

Staffing. By most accounts, there were too many prisoners and too few guards. Experts say this tends to encourage brutality as a crude means of inmate control.
Direction. The soldiers' basic charge was to guard prisoners, but that became muddied when military intelligence officers came forward with vague requests to "soften up" prisoners and "set conditions" for interrogation.

Supervision. The unit's commander, Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski, rarely visited the prison within a prison (the so-called hard site) where prisoners were abused. Her authority may have been usurped by military intelligence officers, but even at a congressional hearing Tuesday, a Pentagon (news - web sites) official and a major general couldn't agree on who was in charge. That prompted Sen. Edward Kennedy (news, bio, voting record), D-Mass., to ask, "How do you expect the MPs to get it straight if we have a difference between the two of you?"

Accountability. In the absence of a clear line of command, the guards were on their own - operating at night, behind prison walls, in a foreign country far from home, without lawyers, journalists or relatives to observe them.

In addition to what was lacking, Abu Ghraib also had ingredients to encourage abuse:

Stress. The young and inexperienced soldiers were in a war zone that had witnessed many deadly sneak attacks on soldiers and civilians. The prison itself was the target of almost daily mortar attacks. One such incident Sept. 20 killed two Army intelligence soldiers.

9/11. The government has argued that the war on terrorism sometimes requires suspensions of civil liberties. Critics ask whether this message trickled down to guards, who concluded that in this war, anything goes.

Revenge. Soldiers may have been influenced by a range of events, from the 9/11 attacks to an escalating series of incidents in Iraq.

Instability. Prisons are stabilized by long-standing, informal understandings between guards and inmates. But at Abu Ghraib, everyone - guards and prisoners alike - was new and had neither a common language nor culture.

These factors combined to produce a classic case of abuse. But Zimbardo, the Stanford psychologist, sees something else in the jeering faces of the guards in the prison photos - a sort of timeless euphoria.

What's really different about Abu Ghraib are the photos, which have granted the public a rare view of what can go on behind prison walls - even when Americans are the jailers.
(reply to this comment)

From
Friday, May 14, 2004, 10:01

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

"One of the most surprising things about the abuse of Iraqi prisoners by U.S. soldiers is that so many Americans are surprised."

My theory on why so many Americans are surprised partly that some people have bought the Bush Administration's missionary complex and claims of righteousness. Abu Ghraib shows that the Bushies' attitude of "we are intrinsically better" is wrong.

(reply to this comment

from Baxter
Thursday, May 13, 2004 - 16:43

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I'm just gonna post a little quote which I think pretty surmises the Iraqi Equation; decipher it as you will:

Power & violence are opposites; where the one rules absolutely, the other is absent. Violence appears when power is in jeopardy, but left to it's own course it ends in power's disappearance.

Johanna Arendt




(reply to this comment)

From lucidchick
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 20:21

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Hanna Arendt rules.(reply to this comment
From Baxter
Friday, May 14, 2004, 04:20

(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes, she does indeed.(reply to this comment
from Shaka
Thursday, May 13, 2004 - 00:36

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Have any of you pacifists even taken the time to watch what our people have gone through? You’ve wailed about the humiliation of our enemies and demanded justice for chauvinistic animals. You’ve condemned our soldiers for excessive force in the treatment of their prisoners. But have you even once steeled yourselves to look, really look at the horrendous acts that have been done to our people? People that were born into freedom, lived their lives in much the same ways as us (after TF of course), gave up those lives for something they believed in to go to one of the most forsaken places on the planet, and died horrible deaths at the hands of brutal, murdering savages. Have you honored them by watching their sacrifices as you’ve so eagerly watched the things our enemies have gone through? I know many of you haven’t. If the images of Iraqis being humiliated have made you so sick, there is no way you could have sat through the images of our boys dying in agony.

Did you keep your eyes on the outrage of an insane mob dragging a wounded man out of his destroyed vehicle while his friends lay dead in the seats? Did you watch as he spent his last minutes curled in pain in the dust while they battered and crushed his head with bricks, wooden planks, and the soles of their feet? Did you see their smiling faces as they tied him by the neck to the back of a car and dragged him over the rocky streets of that hellhole they call a home? Or how about when they burned his fellow civilians to cinders and hung their bodies from a bridge while they beat the swinging corpses with sticks like some sick, grisly piñata. Where is your outrage about that? Or is there any outrage in your great big merciful hearts for them?

I know the video of Nick Berg’s execution has not been widely circulated as of yet. But will any of you even watch it? Or will you turn away in disgust because it’s too horrible to watch and go back to complaining about sex abuse scandals that are easier to look at? You will never look at his face as he is giving his last message to his family. Or how his murderers interrupt him by jerking his head back by the hair while he is in mid-sentence and begin hacking and slicing at his neck with a small knife while he screams and writhes in shocked agony. It is no quick beheading like you may see in some movie. It is the slow, painful decapitation of an innocent man who only wanted to do some good in a country that was not his own. His only crime was wrongly thinking that he could make a difference.

The things done to prisoners at Abu Gharib were terrible; there is no question about that. But where is the outcry from all of you about the horrible things done to our men and women? Do you care more about our enemies than you do about your own countrymen (I’m talking to Americans and Brits here so don’t bother to point it out if your countrymen aren’t who I’m talking about)? Is it because the images of abuse are easier to look at than the images of violent murder, so you just shut what you can’t see out of your mind? I only hope some of you can understand why others and I may seem indifferent to the suffering of our enemies. For my part, it’s because a deep, burning hatred for the things that they are willing to do for the sake of their pride has replaced all the pity I may have had for them. Not for their country or religion; if they gave a damn about their country they’d stop blowing up their own women and children in the blind hope that they might hurt a Westerner. If they gave a damn about their religion they wouldn’t use a mosque full of worshiping families as a shield like they did in Fallujah and several other cities. It’s all for the sake of their pride.

I don’t know if any of this makes a difference to any of you but I’m just trying to explain why I think like I do. I really do hope this war will end quickly although I’m not holding my breath. Like Baxter said, I salute the fallen and hope for better times.
(reply to this comment)

From uncle sam
Wednesday, November 09, 2005, 06:55

(
Agree/Disagree?)

shaka my man

www.rainews24.rai.it/ran24/inchiesta/default_02112005.asp

(reply to this comment

From uncle sam
Wednesday, November 09, 2005, 06:54

(
Agree/Disagree?)

shaka check check this out www.rainews24.rai.it/ran24/inchiesta/default_02112005.asp(reply to this comment

From uncle sam
Wednesday, November 09, 2005, 06:53

(
Agree/Disagree?)

shaka check check this out www.rainews24.rai.it/ran24/inchiesta/default_02112005.asp(reply to this comment

From itsxena2u
Monday, May 17, 2004, 18:40

Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I just watched the video of Nick Berg's death and I must admit that it was the worst thing I have ever seen in my whole life!!! I don't care how many Hollywood horror movies a person has seen. This video is enough to make a grown man puke! Not only is it very disturbing, it is extremely traumatizing as well.

I'm so disgusted at these middle-eastern savages that I don't care what kind of humiliation our troops put these Iraqi prisoners in. I'm sure that if the tables were turned and we were THEIR POWs that we would suffer 100 worse at the hands of these barbaric demons!

(reply to this comment

From thatata
Thursday, October 25, 2007, 14:44

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

"I'm so disgusted at these middle-eastern savages that I don't care what kind of humiliation our troops put these Iraqi prisoners in. I'm sure that if the tables were turned and we were THEIR POWs that we would suffer 100 worse at the hands of these barbaric demons!"

This disgust me, its extremely bad taste, or mabye this can be excusable in a middleaged patriotic American.

If this isnt a half endorsement of physical torture and humiliation I dont know what is. (reply to this comment

From Samuel
Thursday, October 25, 2007, 18:18

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Nice one, Thatata. There is no interesting discussion on here right now so you pull up an old comment and attempt to start a flame war. First of all, what exactly is a "half endorsement"? It sounds more to me like something The Family might use in "Decievers, Yet True" fashion, or maybe a politician during an election year.

The mild embarrassment or humiliation that the Iraqi prisoners were put into could have been much lower had a couple of boneheads not taken pictures of the "torture", an act of stupidity that could only be rivaled by a soldier placing them under the door of his superior, allowing them to be released to the media. Now THAT is humiliation. (reply to this comment

From Baxter
Saturday, October 27, 2007, 18:24

(Agree/Disagree?)

Oh Samuel, you're gonna have to do some explaining....

So your argument is that the crucial feature of humiliation and cruelty in relation to the abuse of those prisoners was the fact that someone photographed them being abused? How is the torment of a torture victim so severely exacerbated by the presence of a photographer? And Samuel, try this one on for size: stand on a box blindfolded, and attach electrodes to your hands, while having one of your friends 'mildly' zap you every time you get tired and begin to lose your balance. AND INTERIM, THINK ABOUT THE CRUCIAL DIFFERENCE A PHOTOGRAPH WOULD MAKE!!!

Samuel, Have you ever experienced severe bullying? I'm just wondering, Samuel, do you know what it feels like to live in fear against the possibility that someone will come through the door and entertain himself at you severely disadvantaged expense? This is not even a fully appropriate comparison, this is mild in context, really. Ever locked your room door at night for fear of being woken up by a drunken fist to the jaw, or a boot in the gut? I'm just curious, Samuel, really. Or how about being dragged out of bed at 4 in the morning to sing stupid ditties for a drunken superior who thinks it's funny that he can mess with your life to that degree. Now, imagine if you will, Samuel, that you are a prisoner and have no recourse to balance the situation against you. Now imagine that you are routinely humiliated and abused with absolutely no control or defense whatsoever. Now call it mildly embarrassing or mildly humiliating. Now remember those images and tell me that you would be able to just brush that kind of treatment aside and soldier on if it was done to you. (reply to this comment

From thatata
Thursday, October 25, 2007, 23:58

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

'half endorsement' yes, thats a weird word, mabye I should have just said excuse.

And , if no one saw the pics there would have been no problem. Obviously? But if this is true, it just shows how sick the situation was. I guess youre one of those mad that the pics were taken not how the troops treated the prisoners.

And by the way im not all fired up with righteous indignation, I just noted a comment that to me is fucked.

And by the way Im not thinking of a flamewar, or was thniking of one, comments like these generally pass without much notice. Unless somebody gets offended. And remember this was not an attack on politics.But a comment on a certain attitude.

So please dont bore me with your attempts.




(reply to this comment

From Samuel
Friday, October 26, 2007, 05:12

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Because this kind of "abuse" happens on a regular basis during war times, it would be hypocritical for me to get all upset about what happened to the prisoners at Abu Ghraib, just because someone took some pictures of it.

Plus, if you want to experience that kind of abuse, there are clubs in Las Vegas that wil be more than happy to make it happen for a couple hundred dollars.(reply to this comment

From steam
Friday, October 26, 2007, 14:56

(Agree/Disagree?)
Dear Samuel,
Can you just imagine Jesus saying this. Especially the quotation marks around abuse. Please review Philippians 2:5. Thank you! P.S. Please give me the address of these clubs for next time I am in Vegas. I am certain they are not like Abu Ghraib but they could be fun.(reply to this comment
From Samuel
Friday, October 26, 2007, 17:41

(Agree/Disagree?)

You would have made a great Room Shepherd, as your reading assignment did not make any sense regarding the cirumstances and what was said. Perhaps you meant to assign me Philippians 2:4? "Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others?"? (from the NIV)

Great, now you're probably going to give me a double demerit for not taking correction with a smile.(reply to this comment

From steam
Saturday, October 27, 2007, 16:31

(Agree/Disagree?)
That's a triple demerit for you for not being receptive to what the Lord wanted to show you, although you can be thankful it is only a triple demerit and not a few months in Abu Ghraib. The verse I assigned you said "let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus" and my comment was that it was hard to imagine Jesus refering to torture of (in many cases) innocents as "abuse" in quotation marks as though to cast doubt on it. I of course have to confess I made the rather pitiful mistake of addressing you with the assumption you could follow a logical thought process. Well you live and you learn. Or if you are an unlucky Iraqi you live and you get tortured.(reply to this comment
From Samuel
Saturday, October 27, 2007, 17:50

(Agree/Disagree?)

Here's some logical thought for you, which I wish you had thought of before you posted your comment. How can someone know the mind of Christ Jesus? What is meant by "this mind"? Did you even read the other verses around this one? How about just the four that preceded it? Single verse reading, without examing the context of each verse makes for faulty thinking(kudos to you for demonstrating that). Out of respect for those who don't want to be preached to, I will lead you to this site http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Philippians%202:1-11;&version=9; rather than post the whole thing here, but I think if you read it you will see that it has to do with humility and looking out for the benefit of others, and not just yourself.

What Paul is saying is that Jesus did the same thing. That is what "this mind" is referring to, not trying to tell someone else what Jesus is thinking, or expecting a mortal to have the same mind and thought processes that Jesus did.


(reply to this comment

From steam
Saturday, October 27, 2007, 22:58

(Agree/Disagree?)
You win. If your contention is that as a Christian you are not supposed to view situations trying to understand how Jesus would see it, and seek in some way to have your reaction line up with his, than that is a very different take than most Christians have, but you are welcome to it. I suppose the fact that "when he saw the multitudes he was moved with compassion upon them" is irrelevant to your dismissive reaction to torture if you do not believe that as a Christian you should endeavor to follow the master. I have that passage memorized from 15 years ago by the way, and the context does focus on humility it is true. It also in my opinion means what it says. That a follower of Christ should seek to try to follow his example and look to try to ascertain what his "mind" or view on issues may be.(reply to this comment
From Samuel
Sunday, October 28, 2007, 05:00

Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

That is correct. But can you see how that verse can be used to control others if it is not viewed in context?

I do believe in compassion. I give to charity and certain missions at my church that I believe are worthy. And maybe, after reading Baxter's response, it is possible that what happened at Abu Ghraib was, in fact, abuse, but I really don't think it was anything out of the ordinary for war times. I guess you'd have to talk to American POW's or the like to find out how prisoners of war are usually treated.(reply to this comment

From cheeks
Friday, May 14, 2004, 06:42

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

At times like these we need to have compassion for all of mankind. To be horrified and outraged is not enough. We can blame whomever we like, and call them whatever names we call them to make ourselves feel better. Joe H, I am ashamed of you. How can you belittle these brave men and women who are over there? Who every day risk life and limb to help someone else. Who cares what their motivation was for going over there does that make them less of a person?

And those of you like Shaka, I understand your anger. But neither does it make it right for our men and women to mistreat those in their care. Do you remember at the begining of the war how many buses came from the neighboring countries carrying men to be suicide bomber and create general upheaval? How do we know these crimes were not committed by them? We don't. And we cannot blame someone for their ethnticity, or religion, look at how we were raised.

Let us have some compassion for our fellow man. Because they are someone's son or daughter, husband or wife, girlfriend or boyfriend, and most of all because they are one of us...human.(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Friday, May 14, 2004, 11:00

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Cheeks, when did I belittle any of the soldiers? I have never once criticized the soldiers, my beef has always been with the chicken-hawks who send people like my baby brother over there to die in their stupid wars. While the rest of you talk about how much you support the troops, I actually do support them by sending them DVDs, candy, and porn! (reply to this comment
From Wolf
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 21:19

Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
P.S. Did you know the Russian soldiers who invaded Czechoslovakia in 1969 were told they were going in to help the Czechoslovakians? This comparison is not as absurd as you may think. The Soviet Union claimed to be protecting Czechoslovakia from capitalist imperialism, but in reality they were after the same things the US is after in Iraq: recourses and political clout.

If the US leaves Iraq with a democratic government that stays in power for at least 2 years with no further bloodshed and civil war, and allows Iraq full autonomy and control of their own recourses, I will chew my cud and admit I’m wrong. But I bet 6 months after the US leaves the country will be just as bad off as it was before they came – instead of one ruthless dictator there will be thousands of ruthless hotheads fighting each other. Permanent US presence in Iraq is not a solution either, unless the US is prepared to resurrect imperialism. (reply to this comment
From Baxter
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 17:37

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I appreciate that Zed has pointed out that most of the prisoners taken were by ,his assertion, better treated than those in the pictures; I have no reason to doubt his word, and so I don't. This in itself presents a painful contrast. Professional soldiers operating now or possibly at any other time will always coexist with certain dillemas and double-standard that they will just have to contend with. If the soldiers on the streets have the professional pride to restrain themselves under the extreme stress in which they are forced to operate, then this rabble of REMFs should have been expected to as well.

I in no way seek to justify the murder of Nicholas Berg or any other civilian. Nor does, I believe, anyone here. But, as it has been pointed out two wrongs do not make a right.

I'm going to make clear beforehand that I differentiate these acts from the accusations now levelled against Coalition forces in the treatment of prisoners by the Red Cross; blindfolding and handcuffing are very sensible measures when handling prisoners, and no one is going to wrap them in cotton wool in any case. That is a different argument

Let's imagine that the Coalition's reason for being in Iraq is in fact altruistic. If this is so, These military misfits have seriously damaged the reputation of the other soldiers in Iraq who are trying to maintain order. Possibly nothing else has damaged the hope for peace in that unfortunate country more than this incident. I'm not sure how I can impart the gravity of this adequately. More soldiers and civilians are now in jeopardy because more Iraqis are likely to take up arms against the Coalition forces. My own political perspective in this matter is irrelevent.

I left the British Army just after the official end of the War; I had spent most of the duration in Northern Ireland, so that my regiment was not sent to the Gulf. I trained with several soldiers who were with the Irish Guards at Basra, as well as some of the Royal Marines in Um Qasr. I, like most of my regiment, felt cheated that`we had to be stuck watching the bloody Bogside of Derry while our brothers in arms went off to fight. Call me a warmonger, I'm not bothered. When I left, my mates went off to prepare for deployment to Iraq, and they're due to go later this year. I do not like to think that any of them may find themselves in a situation that needn't have presented itself had not a few useless idiots had a little fun at the expense of both the prisoners in their custody and their own professional obligations.

These fools have now, in my opinion, spit on the dignity of those soldiers who have died honourably; they are now partly responsible for any increase in violence by their stupidity. If what they did had any purpose or served any function then I would understand the reasoning, although I may or may not accept the justification. Nobody can logically argue that this is in any way the work of professional interrogator; I' ve met such individuals; I can tell you they're cold bastards ,they'd never need to do any of the shit in those pictures, and in any case why the hell would they photograph themselves doing it? In no stretch of the imagination does the murder of any number of civilians justify the procreation of even greater anger and hatred between either party, such as these actions will inevitably incite. Perhaps it wouldn't have raised as much of a fuss if the photographs hadn't gotten out, but in any case the stories would have filtered through unless they'd killed all the prisoners involved.

Maybe now you can understand why I'm personally pissed off about this.

(reply to this comment

From dave
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 07:46

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I think it's a bit of a generalization to lump us 'pacifists' all in one barrel. I can only speak for myself, but my condemnation of the recent prison abuse/torture in Iraq by US soldiers, is in no way ignoring or condoning the heathen and savage murder and multilation of four of our US contractors in Falujah by an ungreatful, merciless and bloodthirsty mob. It should not be automatically assumed that those of us speaking out against the prison abuse, simpathize with barbaric decapitation of Nick Berg or the savage mutilations in Faluja, or other disgusting muders like in Daniel Pearl's case. I understand and respect the point your making, but to make that assumption is wrong in my opinion.

This is not about me, but just so I clarify my viewpoint, let me illustrate briefly just what kind of 'pacifist' I am: When it comes to terrorists and their ilk, I have no sympathy whatsoever. You can do a search on this site for the many comments and articles I've posted within the past several years and you will come to know that I'm pretty much pro 'Big Brother' and have no tolerance for criminals who resort to violence even if they are the 'underdog':

Palestinian &/or extremist suicide bombers, the IRA, the Branch Davidians in the Waco tragedy, Timothy McVeigh, and the list goes on. There is no excuse for violence. I don't care if you've grown up the harsh refugee camps of the West Bank or the Gaza Strip and how mean you say the Israeli army is. Strapping a pack of dynamite on yourself and detonating on a bus full of kids and seniors, innocent civilians, returning from their prayers is plain wrong.

I don't care what right the IRA claim for their land, but all I know is that they've repeatedly blown up innocents, including helpless women, children and babies in weekend marketplaces, that's wrong. The Branch Davidians took up arms against the United States Federal govenrment, it doesn't matter if they had permits and thought they were 'defending' themselves or whatever, it doesn't matter who started shooting. If Federal Agents break my door down and come in blasting, I'm dropping to the floor with my hands in the air and do what they want. I'll do whatever fighting necessary later in court (if I survive, of course). Though tragic, the Branch Davidians brought their demise upon themselves, because they embraced violence.

It doesn't matter what Tim McVeigh's politics were or what injustice he was avenging. He murdered innocents, don't tell me about the box of 'misplaced' evidence discovered just before his execution. I don't care if there were others involved in the OK City bombing. He was guilty and deserved to die for his crimes.

My views on Afghanistan & Sept 11 can best be described like this: On Sept 12, 2001 the day after the 9/11 terrorists attacks in the US, a co-worker comes up to me and says.. "Dave, my young son pointed to the map on the wall and asked what that big white spot was in the middle. 'That used to be Afghanistan', I answered.." He cut the whole country of Afghanistan out of his map. That's exactly how I felt about Al Queda (I know did not spell that right) and the Taliban.. wipe them out completely. Order airstrikes and level that whole country for what they did on 9/11.

I know I've rambled on and on here and I' m probably repeating myself, but my point is: Just because we may be 'liberals' and 'pacifists' and we happen to be screaming about the Iraq prison abuse, that does not mean we have any kind of sympathy, understanding, tolerance, justification or acceptance of other even more abhorrent and savage crimes committed by some barbaric Iraqi 'insurgents'.

Sincerely, Dave


(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 21:09

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Dave, I'd like to apologize for my comments regarding your letter. They were brash and desrespectful to your right of opinion.(reply to this comment
From dave
Friday, May 14, 2004, 05:56

(Agree/Disagree?)

No problem Shackled, I think we've all enjoyed this very captivating discussion and I've learned a good deal here. No offense taken.

Dave.(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 12:19

(Agree/Disagree?)

Yeah, I was told that "pacifist" line would get me in shit. I wrote this while looking at photos of Berg being decapitated so I wasn't in the best of moods. I know that not everyone on here who disagrees with the war is a pacifist. I'm only wondering why the outcry for the abused Iraqis is so much greater than for our own soldiers and civilians. (reply to this comment

From Haunted
Friday, May 14, 2004, 05:13

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Shaka, I think the reason that we've only discussed the Iraqi prisoners' humiliation is because the original thread was a comment on that particular situation.

I can assure you that as a "pacifist", I abhore violence in any way, shape or form. To answer your question, yes, I did watch the video tape of Berg's beheading, and it was as deeply disturbing to me as the photographs from the prison, if not more so because of the graphics and the pitiful sounds of pain and horror as Berg died. Perhaps I am not so outraged as in shock because there are simply no words to describe the pain I feel for his family having to see those images. I am reminded of the Daniel Pearl incident as while back, where I wept for him and his poor wife and even more for the nameless individuals to whom acts of that magnitude where being committed while the world sat unknowing and uncaring.

I don't think that there's much call for a heated debate on that subject though, because I just don't believe that there is anyone here who disputes the horror that our men & women in Iraq are facing now. We sit back numb and speechless imagining our own flesh and blood and friends having to endure the same horrific fates.

Any perpetrator of violent acts SHOULD be punished, no doubt about that. That has been my point all along here. ANYONE, be they American, Iraqi or whomever, SHOULD be punished to the full extent of the law for committing these acts of terror. My point has simply been that NO act of violence is excusable.

There are things that would drive me to the point of violence, but that doesn't make it right. I don't really care whether or not you're pissed about being occupied or pissed that you're having to do the occupation. NEITHER is an excuse in my opinion for loss of humanity and doing something to another person that you would not wish upon yourself.

Personally, I detest ALL chauvinistic animals: there is no difference. (reply to this comment

From auslaender
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 12:59

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Shaka, as far as I can see, one of the key issues here is that many people feel that the American soldiers and civilians being killed and mutilated in Iraq have no reason being there.

They invaded the country with no just cause, killing thousands of civilians in the process.

Now there is a widespread belief that they did not come to liberate Iraq, but to occupy it and make it a client state of the U.S. Sure they may have nominal sovreignity, but with over 100,000 U.S. soldiers in the country for the forseeable future and the largest U.S. embassy in the world, it doesn't take a rocket sceitnist to see who's in control.

Remember, the Iraqis did not declare war on the U.S. I for one can't blame them for resisting the Americans, who they see as oppresive occupiers.

What would Americans do if a superpower invaded them for no just cause and occupied the land? I bet there would be lynchings all over -- all sorts of terrible stuff. Think about it -- the average American would pull out his or her guns and use them. Just like the Iraqis are doing.

If American soldiers or civilians were being killed and mutilated while literally defending America from bad people, it would be a different story. Most of us would be lauding them as heroes.

But they're not -- they're invaders, aggressors, occupiers, -- they unilaterally declared war on a nation that posed no threat to them.

That's the problem, as I see it.

I think what also really pisses a lot of people off -- it does me -- is the self-righteous religious moralising that permeates the whole Bush administration. It makes me puke. "We are the force of divine good in the world fighting evil. We are morally superior."

And then we see all the shit going down in Iraq. And we know we've only seen the tip of the iceberg.Think of all the atrocities we will never know about.

Here's an excerpt from a recent article in the International Herald Tribune that illustrates, for me, the prevailing mindset of the Americans in Iraq.

"A British officer recently complained to The Daily Telegraph in London - a pro-American newspaper - that Americans "don't see the Iraqi people the way we see them. They view them as untermenschen - subhuman, a term applied by the Nazis to Jews and Gypsies.
'They are not concerned about the Iraqi loss of life the way we are. Their attitude toward the Iraqis is tragic, it's awful ... As far as they are concerned Iraq is bandit country and everybody is out to kill them.'"

The whole article is excellent, tracing the mindset of the Bush administration's attitude towards Iraq and the war on terror.

You can find it at
http://www.iht.com/bin/print.php?file=519400.html

But the point is, the Americans are not supposed to be there. This is not WW1 or WW2, where the U.S. was defending itself against aggressors who threw the first punch. In this case, America threw the first punch -- expecting, like a bully does -- not to get much resistance. Now they're pissed off that the underdog is fighting back.

I for one hope that the U.S. really gets its nose bloodied, just like it did in Viet nam. It seems to be the only thing they understand. After Viet nam, there was a long time when there was no desire to get involved in this kind of stuff.

My guess is that if and when they extricate themselves from this debacle, they'll think long and hard before they start throwing their military muscle around again.

Which means that the rest of us can sleep a little easier.

PS. I've really enjoyed this discussion thread. Such a diversity of views. I don't normally discuss these issues online, but this debate has been stimulating. (reply to this comment

From dave
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 13:40

(Agree/Disagree?)

Aus, this discussion truly has been great. I enjoy that everyone here can debate such sensitive political issues with varying opinions and yet respect everyone else's viewpoint and perspective. True democracy.

Shaka, you've made a good point: Why isn't there wall to wall media coverage of other International abuse stories, like what is probably going on in China at this very moment to pro-democracy or religious "dissidents"? It is funny how countries like Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and others in the Mideast are pointing the finger at the prison abuse photos.. when they are notorious for torturing their own people, although they don't admit it. I stand by the letter I wrote to my congressman 100% and I meant everything I said, but I do agree that there are worse things going on out there every single day that we do not hear about. Sincerely, Dave.(reply to this comment

From Jules
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 17:33

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I agree with you regarding this discussion. My non-ex friends, as other people in this thread have also said, have similar opinions to me on this issue. It is very interesting and informative to hear differing views and why people believe the way they do.

I do believe in the principle of "if you have lived it, then you know it", so while what the military personnel here have said was, honestly, quite shocking to me, and I can't say I will ever agree, I do respect that they have an intimate knowledge of this horrible situation and a perspective that I, thankfully, will never have.

I also agree completely with Haunted, in that one can disagree and even strongly oppose another person's viewpoint and still respect and support the person themselves. IMO, it would be very immature and fanatical to decide to dislike or like someone based on their opinons, and I hope I never do that. I do believe that who someone is is what matters and not what their life experiences have led them to conclude about a particular topic. (reply to this comment

From Joe H
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 10:20

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I'm confused, Dave. You start out making a lot of sense, but then you say you want to wipe out Afghanistan "for what they did on 9/11." Uhm, do you know how many of the hijackers were Afghanis (most were Saudis)? I guess your justification would be something along the lines of "Well they gave Al Qaeda a base" but who's "they"? The Taliban was not a democratically elected government; most of the Afghani people hated them, which was plain to see after the Northern Alliance overthrew them with US help.

To be fair, my views on Afghanistan aren't very progressive either. I think there's no hope for them and they should just be left alone to kill each other off. Did you know that the word Afghan comes from an Arabic word meaning "the quarrelsome"? They're never going to get along, they don't want to democracy, they just want chaos and bloodshed. It's sad but true. (reply to this comment

From dave
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 11:29

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I should say that wanting to "level that place" was my reaction to 9/11, not that it was a sensible reaction or the right reaction or solution, or that it should ever be carried out. And you're right, "Afghanistan" per se was not responsible for 9/11, but the Taliban who gave refuge to Bin Laden and who played a part in the events of 9/11, however indirectly. Thanks Joe, good comment.(reply to this comment

From Wolf
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 04:12

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You say “gave up those lives for something they believed in”. I know a group of people who gave up their lives for something they believed in, and all they have to show for it is a bunch of messed up lives … millions of people have given their lives for nonsense causes, and I pity them but definitely don’t admire them.

Why can’t you get it? Murder is what happens during a war! The United States invaded Iraq! How can you possibly help a country by bombing it and killing its civilians? US soldiers are uninvited foreigners. They are still at war with Iraq. When they get killed, they are war casualties. Do you think the battlefield casualties caused by American weapons are any less painful than that guy who had his head slowly cut off? How about the Iraqi soldiers whose bodies are sprayed with little pieces of shrapnel, and slowly bleed to death? Do you think their pain is any less real, just because it’s not shown on TV?

I quote an American solider “The Iraqis are like cancer and we are their chemotherapy”. How on earth can somebody who likens the Iraqis to cancer cells possibly help them? You make it sound as if the US is running a charity operation in that country!
You said “I really do hope this war will end quickly”. Well, why don’t you do something about it? Send out petitions asking your government to bring US soldiers home!(reply to this comment
From Baxter
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 16:32

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HAMMER......NAIL......HEAD.......BANG ON!!! Couldn't put it better myself!(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 01:32

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Agree/Disagree?)
Nicely put, I couldn't say it better. (reply to this comment
From
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 04:02

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Shaka It just seems like you are lumping a whole lot of things together. And making sweeping statements. Its simple-they shouldn't even be there in the first place The majority of the WORLD didn't want this to happen. (reply to this comment

From Shaka
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 12:11

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You're right, they shouldn't be there now. They should have finished the job 13 years ago when they had the chance. They should have kicked Sadaam when he was down and in doing so, saved the lives of thousands of Iraqis murdered under the Ba'ath regime since Desert Storm. Not to mention the lives of coalition troops and Iraqis alike in this second war.

Desert Storm was a golden opportunity that passed us by. We didn't grab hold of it and we're suffering the consequences now.(reply to this comment

from steam
Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - 13:08

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Let me get this straight Shaka. An uneducated person, fed a diet of hate by his local mullah, who perceives Americans as an "occupying force", (Although the circumstances and motives of the occupying army differ from WW2 in the locals mind given their lack of trust, they are doing what the resistance did to the Nazis.) Anyway this person who sees cruel attacks on Americans and sympathises, is the same as the person commiting the act. By the same logic, I suppose your sympathy with the abusers of prisoners, and the system which intentionaly allowed it as a widespread approach (Rumsfeld said we have only seen mild stuff, and there is much rape, torture and even murder that occured as well), your sympathy, would make you a torturing/rapist/murderer by the same logic. Now I am not accusing you of that, becuase I reject that logic, but it does lead to that absurd conclusion. I think we all know that if this hadn't seen the public light of day, the abusers would not be punished.
(reply to this comment)
From Ne Oublie
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 03:16

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Steam,

I don't see what you're trying to achieve by your uninformed racially prejudiced comment. The Iraqis are on a whole not uneducated - they have a culture and civilisation going back much farther than our Western societies. The average Iraqi is well educated, with a very high percentage of university graduates, and specifically engineers (a skill which is highly esteemed in the Arab world to the point that Engineer is a title comparable to Dr in the West).

I guess what this means is that they are even more accountable for their actions, they are not uncivilised savages who have no concept of morality - but are educated and intelligent individuals, with a centuries-old heritage of civilisation and education, who have decided to adopt savage methods in pursuing their goals.(reply to this comment

from steam
Wednesday, May 12, 2004 - 13:08

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Let me get this straight Shaka. An uneducated person, fed a diet of hate by his local mullah, who perceives Americans as an "occupying force", (Although the circumstances and motives of the occupying army differ from WW2 in the locals mind given their lack of trust, they are doing what the resistance did to the Nazis.) Anyway this person who sees cruel attacks on Americans and sympathises, is the same as the person commiting the act. By the same logic, I suppose your sympathy with the abusers of prisoners, and the system which intentionaly allowed it as a widespread approach (Rumsfeld said we have only seen mild stuff, and there is much rape, torture and even murder that occured as well), your sympathy, would make you a torturing/rapist/murderer by the same logic. Now I am not accusing you of that, becuase I reject that logic, but it does lead to that absurd conclusion. I think we all know that if this hadn't seen the public light of day, the abusers would not be punished.
(reply to this comment)
from Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 15:21

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Are you people seeing this? I'm looking at photos of an innocent civilian getting his head cut off with a knife! Do you finally understand who we're fighting? THEY HAVE NO RIGHTS!!! They are not in the same class as human beings, therefore do not deserve humane treatment. Are you peace loving pacifists satisfied now? How many more horrible acts like this have to happen before you wake up to what kind of animals we're dealing with?
(reply to this comment)
From Please, Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:36

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No, no, no. ONLY THE PEOPLE WHO CUT OFF THAT GUYS HEAD SHOULD BE BLAMED FOR CUTTING OFF THAT GUY'S HEAD! (reply to this comment

From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 00:04

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The reason why a broader Iraqi population (but most definitely not all) is responsible for the actions of a few is because they cheered when it was done. They support those actions, as is evidenced by their comments and reactions - I haven't heard a single apology from the Iraqis for what they did to those civilians, nor have I heard that even one of them has been tried for their crimes.

On the other hand, the Western world has been appalled by the actions of those few soldiers. There has been widespread condemnation, and the perpetrators are being brought to justice.

And enough already with the 'freedom fighters' talk (yea, I know it wasn't in this comment... but I don't have time to make a new post) there is ALREADY an agreed 'handover' date for the Americans and Brits to pull out of Iraq. If they stay on, it will only be BECAUSE of these stupid attacks! Therefore there is no justifiable use of the excuse that they are trying to 'liberate' their country by these attacks.

Not only that, but the majority of people who are being killed in these attacks are Iraqis! The torture in those prison camps was not only to protect Allied soldiers, but to protect the even more Iraqi civilians who would have been killed by those savage attacks.

Yes, what Ms England, and the others did was wrong, and I agree that they should be brought to account for what they did - as the American government is doing (and as the British government will do with any confirmed accounts). We live in an imperfect world - taking the high ground is therefore to take appropriate legal action against any perpetrators, rather than employing the kangaroo-court style justice of the tabloid media which can serve no practical purpose in a modern justice system.(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:04

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Terrorists, Ba'ath sympathizers, Muslim extremists. All of them. It makes no difference who they are, if they sympathize with people who do these things and/or would do the same had they the chance, they should not be treated with any sort of decency since they themselves show none.(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 05:58

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So basically, what you're saying here is that you should be treated the same way as the individuals in the pictures who abused and humiliated the Iraqis under their care, since "it makes no difference who they are, if they sympathize with people who do these things and/or would do the same had they the chance, they should not be treated with any sort of decency since they themselves show none". (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Sunday, May 16, 2004, 21:04

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Not once did I say that I agreed with the abuse of those prisoners. I stated many times that I thought it was very wrong and put our soldiers in greater danger than they already are. As I read more of the details that are slowly coming out about it I am becoming more and more disgusted by what those Guardsmen did. But that only goes for those who were wrongly detained. For terrorists and Ba'ath officials who share guilt in Sadaam's murders and tortures, I have no pity. I am not cheering for those soldiers like these barbaric mobs do for terror attacks that kill more Iraqis than Americans. There is a vast difference between Americans sympathetic to the military and civilians who partake in the mutilation and murder of foreigners or dance in the streets while it is happening. (reply to this comment
From Haunted
Monday, May 17, 2004, 04:31

(Agree/Disagree?)
Gottca' - Understood your point from later posts and chats (including the one above about media coverage etc...)(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Monday, May 17, 2004, 04:37

(Agree/Disagree?)
Ahhhhhhh......No...Joe H, don't hit me - I realize I spelt "Gotcha" wrong now!! See what comes of posting before caffeine has been consumed....(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Sunday, May 16, 2004, 21:02

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Not once did I say that I agreed with the abuse of those prisoners. I stated many times that I thought it was very wrong and put our soldiers in greater danger than they already are. As I read more of the details that are slowly coming out about it I am becoming more and more disgusted by what those Guardsmen did. But that only goes for those who were wrongly detained. For terrorists and Ba'ath officials who share guilt in Sadaam's murders and tortures, I have no pity. I am not cheering for those soldiers like these barbaric mobs do for terror attacks that kill more Iraqis than Americans. There is a vast difference between Americans sympathetic to the military and civilians who partake in the mutilation and murder of foreigners or dance in the streets while it is happening.(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Monday, May 17, 2004, 04:50

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Terrorism is an extreme state of mind, any stratagist knows that all America has accomplished in all this is;

*more oil

* creating another generation of terrorists.

Know thy enemy! (reply to this comment

From
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 06:25

(
Agree/Disagree?)
Historical precedent from the french in Algeria to the British in Northern Ireland has shown that whilst mal-treatment of prisoners may "loosen tongues", in the long term these methods only serve to harden the resolve of the opposition, increase their own conviction in the morality of their cause and fuel recruitment of a new generation of fighters. In the absence of any WMD the coalition have sought to justify its occupation on "moral" terms which they have now lost. (reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 08:03

(Agree/Disagree?)

While insurgent forces will use every opportunity to create another 'cause' to rally behind, I think that atrributing their determination to the mal-treatment of prisoners is ignoring the fact that their cause would have gone on with or without that abuse.

This is further highlighted by the fact that in many cases the actual abuse was not reported on, and was therefore not likely to be widely known, other than as urban legend - which is as likely to grow with or without actual evidence.

In other words, just because the abuse didn't serve to quell the violence - or was even used as a rally-call at times - doesn't mean that the abuse is actually responsible for the perpetuation of that violence.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Friday, May 28, 2004, 04:21

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Whether or not certain factions within Iraq will persist in violence regardless of circumstance, this instance has exacerbated the situation by helping to polarise those of the population who remain undecided in their choice of side. Insurgent groups cannot operate successfully without the popular support of the indegenous people (as was demonstrated in Malaya), and if this is not forthcoming the insurgency will almost inevitably lose steam.

While 'urban legends' can and will be exploited by such group they carry little of the gravity and propaganda potency of seeing illustrated and graphic examples on international television. (reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Sunday, May 30, 2004, 07:58

(Agree/Disagree?)
Somehow I doubt that there ever was too much of an 'undecided populace' there in Iraq. I would say that the actual amount of the Iraqi/Arab population whose minds were changed by these accounts is very minimal.

But it most definitely did galvinise the anti-West sentiment in those who were already leaning that way. And it may - possibly - have caused a few who would otherwise have remained peaceful to take to militant opposition, but again, a very minimal number, and not likely to be the determining factor in the success/failure of the war and handover of power.(reply to this comment
From Baxter
Sunday, May 30, 2004, 12:53

(Agree/Disagree?)

I agree that the gravity of this event may not have been crucial. What I will disagree on, however, is the notion that the sentiments of the general Iraqi population was pre-disposed before it, at least not to that degree. While the Americans have been getting almost constant flak daily, the British sector has only just begun to escalate, albeit more rapidly by the day. Furthermore, the original response of most of the population even to the presence of American troops in the early days of the occupation (what else am i gonna call it?) seems, to me, to demonstrate that the present attitude of the population was not pre-determined. Their minds may not have needed to be changed, so to speak. Nevertheless, there is a difference between a silent detractor and a violent opposer.(reply to this comment

From
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 08:33

(
Agree/Disagree?)

The abuse of the west in all its forms is widely known to them as they've been suffering under it. Each abusee has a family. Its sad that a kid grows up seeing the effects of what the west has done to his/her family and surely that is prime ground for growing up holding extremist views. One thing the twin towers did increase is the awareness of the west in their involvement in perpertrating an atmosphere that creates such need for extremism. (reply to this comment

From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 09:18

(Agree/Disagree?)

It was the abuse in the historical examples you, or some-other-wishing-to-remain-anonymous-poster, gave which I was refering to as being largely un-reported - obviously, we've all heard about the abuse in Iraq!(reply to this comment

From
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 09:00

(
Agree/Disagree?)
How the west's population has taken these accusations mirrors the way the COG has. Those who are naive and unwittingly allow bad policies to develop + social/peer pressure. Those who when accussed of abuse, deny and excuse their sin by creating a higher power in which they are absolved. Those who recognise and then leave and either become active or passive. Those that remain in their mindset because thats what they want (Zerby and co-abusers) (reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 09:22

(Agree/Disagree?)
Sounds pretty much like the range of natural responses to such a situation - I'm not surprised to see it repeated in both these instances.(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Sunday, May 16, 2004, 21:06

(Agree/Disagree?)
SONOFABITCH!!!!! Why does this keep posting more than once?(reply to this comment
From Nick
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:54

Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Oh get real! You think that was just the 5 men standing behind that poor guy? It's everyone that sympathizes with them for doing that. If they harbor these men in their village their whole village has to be attacked.
Same goes for the idiots that dance on the US and Brit tanks when they get blown up, or the ones that hung the bodies of the bridge.

You are so so naive to think this was just a few people that are responsible. (reply to this comment
From moon beam
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 06:50

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
So by your argument, the Iraqi people can't be blamed for thinking that the "few" evil acts that soldiers have commited on them stem from a greater sentiment of hate felt by the west, or else you wouldn't sympathise with miss England and her ilk. ? (reply to this comment
From moon beam
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 06:48

(Agree/Disagree?)
So by your argument, the Iraqi people can't be blamed for thinking that the "few" evil acts that soldiers have commited on them stem are from a greater sentiment of hate felt by the west, or else you wouldn't sympathise with miss England and her ilk. ? (reply to this comment
From moon beam
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 06:48

(Agree/Disagree?)
So by your argument, the Iraqi people can't be blamed for thinking that the "few" evil acts that soldiers have commited on stem are from a greater sentiment of hate felt by the west, or else you wouldn't sympathise with miss England and her ilk. ?(reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 22:03

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

The whole problem is that we are trying to fight an unconventional enemy with conventional tactics. These terrorists are not a nation, they are not Iraq, they are not the majority of the people of Iraq. Stemming this recent rash of terrorism requires understanding of the conditions that breed such terrorists. One of these conditions is the policy of the US in the middle east that many average middle easterns view as unfair and biased. Religious fanaticism, poverty, and ignorance are other conditions.

These drivers cannot be fought using traditional cold war battle tactics of who ever is the biggest, badest, and strongest wins. The winner in this new type of war will be the one who can win over the hearts and minds of people. The US is losing badly on this new battle ground.

Terrorism and Sadaam Hussein are two seperate issues that should've been dealth with at separate times. Instead, our cowboy President goes all apeshit riding on the wave of patriotism and fear that washed through this country after 9/11. Thanks to him, we now have a country on the brink of civil war, more enemies than ever, increasing body counts on both sides, an unprecedented image crisis for the US, and a hot bed for terrorist action that had not previously existed.

The US already had shaky relations with most of the Muslim world in the first place. The situation in Iraq has only served to furthur divide both sides. We invaded a country that was no significant threat to us and we are seeing the consequences. Unlike the view that many egocentric wanna be patriots like to take, the rest of the world are not idiots. The disrespectfull attidtude the US shows to the rest of the world is not lost on them and they are getting sick of it. Power and might will only take a country so far, ultimately if the US wants to continue to be a superpower, it's gonna have to show some respect to other nations and cultures that may differ from our own.(reply to this comment

From Wolf
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 11:56

(Agree/Disagree?)
Too bad you’re not running for President, I’d vote for you! It’s about time we had a female President.(reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 05:27

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

The current rules of engagement are based on a very different sort of war - and specifically one in which all sides are upholding those same standards. To allow oneself to be held to a gentler standard than your enemy is to effectively weaken your own position by giving them the advantage of resorting to those tactics without fear of retribution.

The rules regarding the treatment of PoW's were created with the concept of a western soldier being held - soldiery is his career, and he is not some fanatic who is willing to sacrifice his own life for the greater cause. A whole new concept interrogation must be empolyed when dealing with someone who has no regard for the value of their own life - as with a suicide bomber. The same tactics cannot be used as would be on the western-style soldier, who is simply following orders, and who intends to return safe and sound to his home and family afterwards.(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 10:00

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I see your point, but if we allow the bad guys to set the standard, then we might as well throw out the Geneva Convention and find the second most creepy lowlife general in the world and ask him what the rules of engagement should be. That way we'd still be able to say "At least we're not as bad as what's their names." Does that make sense?(reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 13:09

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I see your point, and that you're trying to somehow moralise the whole concept of war - but remember what it is we're actually talking about: we're talking about killing people, using all manner of weapons which kill, maim and destroy. Can you really say that one method is 'right'?
We're quibbling over what is the 'lesser of two evils', and therefore drawing the conclusion that we are somehow morally superior because of it.

I don't think that it's all that clear-cut, and I think that in many cases one needs to look at the motivation more than the actual actions. I mean, look throughout history, basically every great advance in human society involved tremendous suffering and abuses (think of the Industrial Age, and all that was involved in establishing the rail networks which we now enjoy.) Life isn't peaches and roses, and in order to achieve anything great there is almost always suffering involved - the only difference is that now there's always someone with a camera around to broadcast it to the whole world, therefore bringing the terrible truth into our very livingrooms.(reply to this comment
From another dose of get real
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:39

Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Why don't we try following that same line of reasoning and apply it to the abuse at the prison as well. You think it was just the soldiers in the pictures that took part of all of the abuses that were detailed in the Red Cross report? Of course not! The Iraqi's could just as well reason that everyone that symapthizes with the American soldiers needs to be attacked.

WE are in THEIR country. WE attacked them FIRST. WE are holding most of these prisoner's without due process. How can someone be labeled a terrorist for trying to fight an invading force? We are calling this a war, and the only way for there to be a war is if there are at least two parties fighting each other. Just because one of those parties happens to be bigger and better equipped than the other party doesn't give that party the right to do whatever it pleases without at least some sort of retaliation.

Of course that doesn't in the least bit excuse any one of the opposing factions for their actions either.

I agree with Exister's comment, that it's the picture that is so shocking. Of course everyone knows that there are atrocities in a war. There are things happening right now that are so much worse than what we've seen via the media. Torture and coercion are nothing new. I think another reason why these particular photos are so shocking though is that they aren't photos of torture, they are just photos of the prep work being done by people that are not trained and do not have the authority. (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:33

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

To: another dose of get real.

You must of mixed up your doses again and took the lets live in a fantasy world. The reality dose would've told you that the stronger attack the weak and it has been so all through out history.

You said: "some sort of retaliation. " You got it backwards.

Have you been watching the news and really give a fuck about this topic.

1. The Fallujah situation warranted retaliation.

2. Information was needed, warranting torture.
(reply to this comment

From moon beam
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 07:07

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Only problem there is that the torture was reported by the red cross long before the attack on fallujah. When you say the U.S has to fight differently, how can you call their only way barbaric but not yourself? You also say innocents have to die vietnam style if need be but when they kill inocents(9/11 and suicide bombers) they are sub-human? And further you say its always been "that the strongest attack the weak", well I see how that eventually the weak become strong! (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 17:42

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Your comments and question in quotations.

"Only problem there is that the torture was reported by the red cross long before the attack on fallujah."

That is why I gave reason #2.

"When you say the U.S has to fight differently, how can you call their only way barbaric but not yourself? You also say innocents have to die vietnam style if need be but when they kill inocents(9/11 and suicide bombers) they are sub-human?"

I never said this. If you're pissed off at me for believing differently I understand. But try to keep the accusations true.

"And further you say its always been "that the strongest attack the weak", well I see how that eventually the weak become strong! "

Can you give me a time in history when the weak attacked the strong, meaning by war, and won? I thought it was common knowledge that the strong prey upon the weak. Or is that only where I live. (reply to this comment

From moon beam
Monday, May 17, 2004, 13:11

(Agree/Disagree?)
Shackled Sorry, just realised my mistake in mixing up your comment with Shaka's in which he states "THEY HAVE NO RIGHTS!!!! They are not in the same class of human beings, they do not deserve humane treatment." Which to me, in a word means calling them sub-human. (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Monday, May 17, 2004, 18:16

(
Agree/Disagree?)
NP (reply to this comment
From sarafina
Monday, May 17, 2004, 15:12

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Why do you keep going on and on about all this? It's almost like your talking to yourself now. We already know how you feel about the subject are you going to try and write a reply to every comment under this article? (Of course you can if you want) but really, there's no reason for Cap's we can read just fine. Many have already gone over most of the reasons of both opinions and sides so why don't we leave it at we agree that we disagree and move on.

I mean gees. I'm just thankful none of you are president that's all I can say. You'd end up turning America into a pasifist communist Russia who also thought they could have a better world by sharing.. peace and love and quality .. well we all know how well that turned out....the biggest dictatorship ever! I'm sorry but I also do not believe all humans were created equal! For one.. I don't believe we were "created" and if we were equal how come some are born smarter, faster, stronger better looking and others stupid, ugly and weak.? Competitive Greed, Power and war is what keeps this world progressing. (.. and to all you who think peace and equality are the answers.."well here's your sign!") Ps. To clarify these are just my own opinions not a challenge for a debate form all you hungry arguers. (reply to this comment

From LOL No hope for me then!
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 11:59

(
Agree/Disagree?)
I'm ugly, weak and dyslexic.(reply to this comment
From mathematician
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 11:32

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Just a little test of your formula:

If the present progress brought about by a combination of competive greed + power + war, is brought about by the stupid + ugly + weak , does this equal world takover by the inferiors? Or did we lose a piece of the puzzle?

(reply to this comment

From sarafina
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 12:01

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Pfff! Don't try and twist something I'm saying. This is why I don't like debating with some you on here. Your questions turn in to all these what if "Hypothetical scenarios" or "reverse of roles". Just stick to what's happening now and I'll debate on that. I'm not going to argue about some "what if " scenario. Also I will not be responding anymore to unregister names or users.(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 12:07

(Agree/Disagree?)
unregistered*(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 08:04

(Agree/Disagree?)
Why do you have a problem with me apologising to Shackled? Also the caps are there because thats how they are in Shaka's original comment. And I didn't think there was a deadline to a topic! For me it was just getting interesting, certainly didn't mean to bore you... (reply to this comment
From sarafina
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 09:37

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes, I realized that about the caps after the fact.Oh, and I don't have a problem with you. It was just the topic and the fact that you missed the main part of the discussion and were the only one commenting on everyones comments all day but you are right there is no deadline. I'm sorry if my comment came across that way. It has actually been a rather interesting topic over all.(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 10:51

(Agree/Disagree?)
Cool! but I was repyling to Skackled as he said "where in my comments did I say..." as I had accused him of calling certain humans sub-human, so it was not a random comment. Plus I thought debating meant commenting back (I havent on everyones),and I only had the chance to do that yesterday. Your right, it is been an interresting topic which has raised many issues, tho not as indepth as I'd like. I believe your refering to the main point as being "feel sorry for U.S troops/what they did was not that bad"? Well I can agree to disagree. :)(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Monday, May 17, 2004, 21:05

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I say we take all the peacenicks and pair them up with "those poor prisoners" in locked cells. We give the peacenicks flowers and chocolate, and the prisoners knives. Then we'll see if they can coax them not to cut their throats and to give up vital information by using peace and love. Ahhhhhh...Utopia!(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 11:13

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Sweet - I'm racking up the nicknames... Let's see, I have 1) Pacifist 2) Liberal Pansy and now whoppie (!) another one - 3) Peacenik (although I've never heard the term applied to anyone other than anti-Vietnam war activists, I suppose it is appropriate considering the fact that the question has been raised "is this the Vietnam of the new Millenium?").

Anyways, I heard a very interesting program this morning on NPR (yes, I am a nerd/geek) with interviews from a few of the Iraqis pictures in the now infamous photographs we're discussing here. I've found that NPR gives a terrific two-sided story every time so this was quite amazing. There were a few interviews with those certainly deserved to be incarcerated as well as a few very heart-wrentching interviews of those who were subsequently released after it was determined that they were innocent. Some of these men however, are now in absolute shame over the entire world having seen their disgrace. Surprisingly, they expressed neither hate nor want for revenge towards those who had wronged them, mainly they expressed their humiliation. One man told how his family would no longer look him in the eyes since he had exposed his nakedness to the world. Very sad... but anyways, I felt it re-enforced the point that although there are some who were very deserving of the humiliation (although I still don't think it was right) - there were also those who were very much underserving and peaceful citizens who just happened to be incarcerated at the same time.

If anyone's interested the link to the program is here:

http://www.npr.org/rundowns/segment.php?wfId=1900469(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 21:06

(Agree/Disagree?)
Well, give me a name to call you people and I'll try to stick to it. At least when I'm in a good mood. Preferably something short yet descriptive.(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Wednesday, May 19, 2004, 04:41

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Oh no - any of those above will do ;-) .... as long as you keep your end of the bargain to supply me with chocolates....

But seriously, I'm not picking on you, yours just happens to be one of the few well-thought out arguments on the "other side" that I feel is worth responding to.

I think it's great that we can get on here and debate stuff like this, and like I said before, it's really been one of the most engaging discussions in quite some time. (reply to this comment

From Shaka
Wednesday, May 19, 2004, 20:57

(Agree/Disagree?)
You like milk or dark? Plain or with nuts? (I'm talking about chocolate, get your mind out of the gutter!)(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 04:41

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

What! Who Me? Never! My mind is far to beautiful to spend time in the gutter thank you. Miscreants must do the immense climb out of the gutter to spend time with my chocolate-inebriated mind....

---- Dark bitter-sweet chocolate with no nuts please, preferably from Belgium. Thank you!

Oh, and as for the flowers you also promised, yellow roses with red tips and Lavendar blossoms will do nicely....(reply to this comment

From nobody
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 00:34

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I found this hilarious considering everything you’ve said on this subject

Taken from Shaka’s profile:

'Loves boxing and a very special girl. Hates TF and all extremists'. (reply to this comment

From Shaka
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 11:44

(Agree/Disagree?)
Did I specify who I'm talking about? Mind your own damn business.(reply to this comment
From Missing the point
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 12:44

(
Agree/Disagree?)

To explain it very clearly for you…………the irony is that you claim to hate ANYTHING extremists. Not about the love of your life. (reply to this comment
From Baxter
Sunday, May 30, 2004, 12:59

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Why did you feel the need to deviate from the subject to bring the bloke's personal profile into question? I realise this may seem relevent, however it's only so if you feel the need to degrade the person instead of the argument. At least that's the way I see it.

Feel free to detract me.(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 20:44

(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes I did leave myself wide open there, didn't I? It should have read, "religious extremists". Thank you for being so kind as to point that out for me.(reply to this comment
From Religion vs. Politics
Friday, May 21, 2004, 14:39

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)
Your political views are a belief. A belief that your culture (sorry American culture) is better that the culture of others and therefore has the right to ‘show them the way’ of the One true culture.(reply to this comment
From culture isn't all good
Saturday, May 22, 2004, 06:30

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Just because something has become a part of a culture dosen't mean its right. For instance; foot binding, fox hunting, female circumcition, corporal punishment etc. Its fine harping back to traditional values but many are out dated and ignorant practicess. (reply to this comment

From Shaka
Friday, May 21, 2004, 20:38

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Well that's the beauty of my culture. Right or wrong, I can believe whatever the fuck I want. (reply to this comment
From People become what they hate
Friday, May 21, 2004, 22:47

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)
Maybe so, but your political views still seem quite extremist. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Saturday, May 22, 2004, 07:46

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Religious extremists! I agree, I am a right wing extremist. I don't even mind your side because it's just a matter of opinion. It's religion that gets my goat.(reply to this comment

From Shame on You
Saturday, May 22, 2004, 12:09

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)
Considering your background, you should be more aware of what happens when people replace rationality and humanity with extremist views.

Definition of extremist:
(used of opinions and actions) far beyond the norm; "extremist political views"; "radical opinions on education"; "an ultra conservative".(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Tuesday, May 25, 2004, 20:51

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I see no point in debating someone who cowers behind a name like nobody. If you want an argument tell me who you are. Till then, you are nobody in my opinion.(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 20:52

(Agree/Disagree?)
I have made no secret of my identity since becoming a member of this site. If you've missed it so far, my name is John Gill and I currently reside in Windsor, Ontario. My blood parents in TF were Matthew and Renee Canada. However, I grew up in the custody of Elam and Harvest. Whether all that makes any sense to you, I don't give a fuck. But don't accuse me of staying anonymous. It's your turn now. Speak up. Or shut up.(reply to this comment
From no one!
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 06:36

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)
Isn't Nobody just as valid a suedo name as Shaka?(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 10:58

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
NO, it's not the same. One Shaka is his real nick name and two you can click on it and check out his profile and other things he's written or you can email him with further comments. So you at least have some idea who you are talking with and maybe even where he's coming from as he always post under the same name so there is some consistency. With these random post with no names you don't know who your talking with for all I know they could be posting comments on both sides and just starting up stuff for their own entertainment ..with no way to email them or read anything else they have written. On the other hand if they do write something great or profound I would like to know who's comment I've had the pleasure of enjoying.

In fact I think I will add that to my profile that "I will not debate, comment or respond to unregistered users, random post or those using ghost names. Unless they let me know who they are somehow.(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 06:04

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I want an argument!!

Seriously, this site has been rather monotonous lately since this Iraqi prisoner abuse thread started dying out - do us a favor and post another highly controversial and highly volatile comment so we call all rally up again and have another fierce debate ;-)

Sincerely, your sparring partner, Haunted(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Saturday, May 29, 2004, 07:26

(Agree/Disagree?)
I'll try to think of something just for you. ;)(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 06:06

(Agree/Disagree?)
Correction: Above should read: "so we CAN all rally"(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Saturday, May 22, 2004, 01:06

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Actually I guess it all comes down to mater of perspective cause in my every day life and around al the people I work with or friends I have that aren't exers this is very normal thinking when I tell them some of these views you all have presented they say " well all pacifist extremist think like that" Actually they say a lot more but that's the jest of it. So it's funny that you think we are extremist and you think we are. Again it's all a matter of perspective.(reply to this comment
From nobody
Saturday, May 22, 2004, 12:25

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
You should know better. Are you still in the military? Just wondering as there is a picture in your profile of you in a uniform.
Shaka is a little young to have been around when victor programs and public humiliation were going on the cult; you on the other hand weren’t.
I wonder how accepting your friends would be if they knew the gory details of your childhood in a sex cult. (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 26, 2004, 19:06

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Those of us who were born into the COG were not the COG. All those "gory details" are not us and not who we are. Every friend that we make after leaving TF will be different; some will understand and know that wasn't us while others will do the opposite, I wouldn't want a friend like that anyway. My friends know about the COG and don't look at me as ever being one of them or contaminated. We all live in different parts of the world, cultures, religions so, what may be happening to you does not necessarily mean it will happen to others.

And saying, "You should know better.". Don't you think one can think and speak as they wish and not by your definition of right and wrong. Or perhaps, do I also not know better? You may be older but you gotta earn the right and respect to tell someone that.

I am not a backslider because I was never one of them.

(reply to this comment

From nobody
Thursday, May 27, 2004, 06:59

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
So let me get this right, you can say what ever the hell you want, but anyone who disagrees with you has to earn your respect. In that case you can keep your respect and save it for someone else.
I think it’s grand that you are able to tell people about your past and I’m sure none of them speak about you growing up in the COG behind your back.
The only people who I do tell are very close friends and even then I don’t see the point of harping on the fact.

(reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Friday, May 21, 2004, 18:12

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Every era has its leader in pop culture and every culture thinks theirs is the best. There's nothing wrong with patriotism and taking pride in one's culture. I am an American and am proud to be one, but I am not going to let my patriotism blind me to reality. America was founded on equality and justice for all...good ideals of course. But let's not forget that the equality and justice for all only applied of you were a white anglo-saxon male. Women had no public voice and blacks were written into law as 3/5 of a person. Not to mention the incredible racial and economic discrimination that was legal against the irish, italian, and many other ethnicities.

America has done a great deal of good in the world as well as a great deal of harm. The bottom line is a country has to balance its own needs with the the needs of the rest of the world as well as taking into account the right thing to do. In the case of Iraq, it's my opinion that the needs of one man (Bush) took precedence over the needs of a nation and the needs of America and the world. He sent young men to die and kill others for his own political gamble and to repay those powerful intrests that put the incompetent boob in office in the first place.

And don't forget, it wasn't us "liberal pansies" who sneakily tried to cut combat pay for the very troops sent to war by none other than your precious Bush!!(reply to this comment

From Perhaps it's missing a point
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 17:57

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Or maybe you could explain it to me 2. I could use a laugh.(reply to this comment

From
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 00:25

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Or just plain nuts. (reply to this comment
From Short and descriptive?
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 21:59

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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How about "Wise ones"? (LOL) (reply to this comment
From Jerseygirl
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 11:46

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

My God, woman!!! Don't take everything so personally! I think it's time for another one of your pills right? But hey, most of us peace-loving pacifists live in a delusional state already so back to it I say! (wink wink)(reply to this comment

From
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 11:35

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I wonder how miss England would feel if her antics/orgies were beamed accross the world. (reply to this comment
From Haunted
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 11:19

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Incindentaly, thanks for the flowers and chocolates ;-)

BTW - Some of us can get a whole deal of information out of people with those kind of tools....(reply to this comment

From banal_commentator
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 11:27

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Does anyone know the URL for "The Family's" members only website??? Please respond! (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 00:42

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It's www.familymembers.com(reply to this comment

From Vicky
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 12:24

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It's difficult to get into - You have to give a home number and the specific password that goes with that home ID.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Thursday, May 20, 2004, 00:51

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There are login names and passwords that never change (reply to this comment

From Ne Oublie
Tuesday, May 18, 2004, 08:27

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Better yet, give both the peacenik and the prisoner knives - or just give one between the two of them - and see how long before the peacenik uses it!(reply to this comment
From Baxter
Monday, May 17, 2004, 15:27

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OXYMORON OF THE YEAR!!!WE HAVE A WINNER!!!!! WHEN DID PACIFIST COMMUNIST RUSSIA EXIST?

Still, I agree with you! We are not born equal.(reply to this comment

From sarafina
Monday, May 17, 2004, 15:45

Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Thanks Baxter. I knew you'd find something to yell and scream in Caps about. That was actually a mistake there wasn't supposed to be the "pacifist" part in there that was left over from a previous statement I was writing and decided to delete and re-word the sentence it should have just read "communist Russia" Thats what I get for not going back and reading it after posting so yes, Ha Ha at myself. (reply to this comment
From Baxter
Monday, May 17, 2004, 18:45

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(Blushing) I'm sorry......I didn't mean to hurt your......feelings!

(Now bursts into tears)

Aw, I was just nitpicking!

(reply to this comment

From sarafina
Monday, May 17, 2004, 21:04

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Aw, No harm done. You got me fair and square. That was a pretty embarrassing mistake I was the one that turned bright red. =)(reply to this comment
From roughneck
Saturday, May 22, 2004, 09:24

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No need to be embarrassed, you could have just said you were referring to Stalin's non-aggression treaty with Hitler, August 23, 1939. =) http://www.assumption.edu/dept/history/HI14Net/Hitler_Stalin_pact.html
See? It's not an entirely complete oxymoron after all. :P(reply to this comment
From Baxter
Saturday, May 22, 2004, 13:46

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
The non- agression act was not pacifism. The Russians were aware that they would have to go to war with Hitler eventually and they were in the process of rearming- problem was, their rehaul wasn't due till about 42-43, which of course was too late to stop operation Barbarossa. The non-agression act was merely a miscalculation, not a white dove.(reply to this comment
From roughneck
Sunday, May 23, 2004, 08:01

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Of course, you're correct in saying it wasn't pacifism (Appeasement may be a more accurate word). Nevertheless, a peace treaty of any stripe is slightly more "pacifist" than a unilateral declaration of (pre-emptive) war like what we've had lately. Besides, I wasn't actually serious anyway. :)

But to be fair, "Pacifist Capitalist America" sounds just as oxymoronic as "Pacifist Communist Russia", doesn't it? Oh well. :)

(reply to this comment
From Baxter
Tuesday, May 25, 2004, 14:26

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True...true.(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 05:54

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Well, Ghandi, end of apartheid, the sufragettes, us leaving the cult..... (reply to this comment
From moon beam
Friday, May 14, 2004, 00:51

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Wellington beat Napoleon thus ending his empire, using unconventional methods for the time. (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 21:16

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I said war, not peaceful protest. (reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Friday, May 14, 2004, 06:50

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)


The victor in a military engagement is typically percieved to have been the stronger one - therefore, while there have been numerous examples throughout history of numerically inferior forces defeating a larger enemy, this is generally attributed to other aspects of 'strength', such as bravery, training, weapons or strategy. (Strength in planning a strategy can often compensate for weakness in all other areas combined.)

As for the examples moon beam gave, it's essential to remember that in practically every case where a military opponent was involved it took more than just the peaceful strategy to succeed.

For example in Ghandi's case, there had already been a long, and armed, struggle for Indian independance before he came along - and it continued eve while he was pursuing his peaceful initiatives. I think it's safe to say that his efforts would not have achieved the same success had it not been for the armed struggle which accompanied his actions.

Similarly with apartheid - the peaceful aspect in this came only as the culmination of a long and violent struggle (which continues on today). Again, the success of the peaceful movement would not have been the same were it not for the contrast to the violence in the name of the same cause.

The Suffragettes were not opposing a military force (although there were occasional run-in's with the police) - similarly with leaving the cult - which is why military/violent action was not required.

At the end of the day, it comes down to the nature of the opponent: violence is not needed in order to stage a corporate takeover - although the ramifications are often far greater, and affect the lives of many more than a military action.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Sunday, May 16, 2004, 15:59

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Let's go into into this even further. If Apartheid was left up to the ANC, they'd still be fighting now; The ANC's was the worst terror campaign in history; they were crap at what they did. What changed SA was a conglomerate of prominent businessmen who found it in their best interest to get rid of Apartheid. Nelson Mandela's role was more symbolic than anything else. Ghandi didn't defeat the British Empire- five years of glabal war did that. By the end there was no Empire left to defeat.

I personally can think of only one incident in which any one has truly made a drastic change for the better, by sheer force of will; that;s China population control measures- these have saved China from the potential drought and starvation that India now is confronted by. They only managed to do it through extremely drastic draconian measures. The rest of the world has labelled what in my opinion is perhaps the most truly humane act of 20th century an act of sheer inhumanity. South Africa was given the freedom to slaughter each other. India went on to commit serial Genocide. Where is the all-engulfing influence of Mandela or Ghandi now?


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From moon beam
Monday, May 17, 2004, 12:31

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I'm of the opinion that the world is over populated too, tho I do believe that those measures have created another set of problems in making it more popular for a couple to have boys rather than girls.

On the other end you've got the Pope making a woman a saint because she allowed herself to die in childbirth. They are against contraception and thats the nonsense they are peddling to third world countries? Not really the solution they need is it! (reply to this comment

From Baxter
Monday, May 17, 2004, 18:39

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Just crazy Chinese people for you, really!

I should know!

(reply to this comment

From lucidchick
Sunday, May 16, 2004, 16:24

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

So only "all-engulfing influence" is acceptable to you, even if the person you're demanding it of is long dead?

I refuse to believe that because one person cannot do everything and there are limits to everything, that invalidates what they did do or makes it useless to do the limited things that one can do.

By your China vs. South Africa & India reasoning, the US might as well give itself over to totalitarian limitations on its freedom, because let's face it, we have the freedom to have a lot of terrible things happen in this country.

Self-determination, for which Gandhi fought, is not a cure-all, as those of us who have left The Family well know. But self-determination is much preferable to being determined by somebody else. At least there is some measure of control over the drawbacks one has to live with and the possibility to choose ways to mitigate them or counterbalance them.

For somebody who quotes Hannah Arendt, I think you should know that she was not a big fan of totalitarianism.


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From Baxter
Monday, May 17, 2004, 13:51

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Firstly, having read 'The Origins of Totalitarianism', I am aware of Arendt's perspective on the subject. Quoting someone does not preclude agreement. I do not, however, support totalitarianism; my point was that, in the great scheme of things, what we as humans celebrate as glorious triumphs of humanity and morality over injustice are in fact romantic farces.

I neither support nor detract the actions of the Communist Chinese government in their actions to reduce birth-rates.

As far as I'm personally concerned, I do not deem freedom to be either a right or a responsibility; it's a destructive burden. Freedom has never been complete, neither will it ever be complete, so long as humans restrict themselves with the presently accepted boundaries of society and government.

Inevitably, in my opinion, freedom is preferable to any kind of rule; freedom, if it can be attained, must be complete, or else it is worthless. As far as I am concerned. Mankind,as I said before, was meant to exist in conflict, as with the rest of nature. Morality is a not merely a restriction, it is exploitation, because all that has now been effected is that a smaller cadre of the priviledged now benefit from the still-continuous state of conflict in which we exist even now.

Nor do I place any faith in the notion of 'human rights'. To me this term implies that these are inherent in every human being, which would require one of two things: either they are imparted by the rest of humanity, which then requires every human to respect the rights of every other human being; else, they must be imparted by Divine Providence. The former is impossible, and the second has never been substantiated, nor in my opinion can it. If it is merely the majority that consents to the concept of human rights, that merely make it right by consensus, which is a lie as well.

If we had the genuine right to equality, we would be born equal; If the rights of man truly meant anything to the world, we would stand, in our entirety, in the way of everyone who ever considered a course of action in which the possibility of hurting any human being( much less any living thingl, or even the Earth). True freedom would require the destruction of society as we know it now, and I don't say that's a bad thing. If we're all destructive bastards, I say let us ALL be destructive bastards together, rather than restricted destructive bastards under the rule of thumb of a few priviledged destructive bastards. Why do we trust those we elect to rule us when we know that their motivations are never altruistic? Why do we profess to stirve for an equality we know we can never have, and will never institute, even though it is well within the abilities of contemperary man?

I guess you get the point by now that I don't believe in universal solutions for any of humanity's problems, be they popularist or draconian.

I say, make one law: make legality illegal. Because the only right inherent to every human and every other living thing born on this planet is the right to compete.




(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Saturday, May 15, 2004, 00:30

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Must I reiterate. I said give me examples how the weak defeated the strong by means of war. After Moonbeam's example I realised that there probably are alot more. But my point remains true, the strong prey upon the weak and 9 out of 10 times win. (reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Saturday, May 15, 2004, 03:54

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Indeed, my point was simply to identify what is considered to be 'strong' - it's very rare that the victor of a war will immediately be classified as weaker than their opponent, no matter how their strength was percieved before the engagement.

It's also only natural to engage in military action if you are at least somewhat confident of your chances of victory, which would account for why the weaker side will typically not initiate the hostilities.(reply to this comment
From
Friday, May 14, 2004, 10:10

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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Ne Oublie, this is a very astute observation.(reply to this comment
from Nick
Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 13:00

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Did you all see the latest about that innocent civilian Nicholas Berg that was captured in Iraq? They decapitated him on camera for the world to see.

And all you liberal pansies are bitching about a few Iraqi POW’s were made fun of in what amounts to the equivalent of a collage fraternity hazing! They were not physically hurt and will probably get compensated for it in the long run.
I have said it before and I am saying it again. If this is not reason enough to fucking blow the whole lot of them to bits then what is? They murder innocents and hang their body of a bridge and that gets less converge than the Iraqi POW’s. What the hell is the matter with you?
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From Trish
Tuesday, May 25, 2004, 05:52

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I saw the video of the decapitation and I was sick to my stomach literally had to puke. I think the "abuse" of the prisoner's is going to get blamed on some low ranking GI and no higher ups are going to really get the heat for it. Nick, I agree with your view point on this subject. We should just get rid of the whole lot of them, turn the country back over to them and then see what a great job they'll do of getting order restored and building up their country. All everybody wants to do is bitch about petty shit as if they could do a better job at it.

Jonathan, you are the most stupid fuck I have ever heard. All that ever comes out of your mouth is shit! I keep hoping I'll see something normal you write but so far I've been so disapointed. (reply to this comment

From Trish
Tuesday, May 25, 2004, 05:51

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I saw the video of the decapitation and I was sick to my stomach literally had to puke. I think the "abuse" of the prisoner's is going to get blamed on some low ranking GI and no higher ups are going to really get the heat for it. Nick, I agree with your view point on this subject. We should just get rid of the whole lot of them, turn the country back over to them and then see what a great job they'll do of getting order restored and building up their country. All everybody wants to do is bitch about petty shit as if they could do a better job at it.

Jonathan, you are the most stupid fuck I have ever heard. All that ever comes out of your mouth is shit! I keep hoping I'll see something normal you write but so far I've been so disapointed. (reply to this comment

From Haunted
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 06:08

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

It obvious that people here have VERY different points on view on the situation. However, I just think that we should be able to discuss this in an educated and civilized manner without "name-calling".

My best friend is on here and is posting an entirely different point of view than I but I think we can respect the people even if we don't respect or share the same opinion. I'm sorry Nick, but I just don't think you should go calling those who have a different view than you "liberal pansies".

It seems rather childish to me to attack the person rather than sticking to attacking the argument.

It's nice to see people so intense about politics and policy though - my kinda group!!(reply to this comment

From Vicky
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:51

Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Nick, Nick, what can I say... Texas is rubbing off on you, isn't it...

Yes, of course that is a horrible, disgusting and completely shameful act of evil! I don't think anyone will argue with you on that one!

But I still don't believe that every little Iraqi prisoner deserves to be treated like an animal. It is not right for America, as the spearhead of the 'civilised world' and its war on 'terrorism' (In other words, the 'good guy') to degrade itself to the standards and mentality of those who have no respect for human life.

Even if we caught the men who carried out this heinous crime, I would want to see them tried and convicted and then punished accordingly, because we are better than them!

The people that carried out that crime are acting on their own little religious or fanatical belief, they are not representatives of their entire country or its people. If America sends its representatives to 'liberate' a country then they should treat its citizens with some degree of respect and dignity.

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From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 13:33

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(
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They better get compensation, though it would not undo what was done.(reply to this comment
from The Ripper.
Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 10:06

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Isn't it weird how a lot would people would pay to be dragged around on a leash naked by a chick in uniform? These Arabs just don't know how to have a good time!
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From frmrjoyish
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 10:23

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
LOL! While it's true that Arab men seem to have a pechant for western women, I highly doubt that any of them would've paid that particular woman to be their companion for a gameful evening!(reply to this comment
from exister
Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 09:13

Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

It is not the thing itself that horrifies, but rather the image of the thing. Most intelligent people knew on some level that this was how information was obtained from prisoners. The major difference here was that someone was dumb enough to take pictures.

Imagine how much more attention our cause would get if we had video tape of children being beaten. The spoken word is oh so much easier to ignore than the simulacrum.
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From Fish
Friday, October 26, 2007, 00:23

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Baudrillard anyone?(reply to this comment
from
Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 07:54

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
This is a little off topic and happened in the UK, last year there was some anger from some parents who children had supposedly committed suicide while in the army. One boy apparently shot himself in the head twice, I’m pretty sure that no one was brought to justice over this. Do we really want to end up living in a police state where the police and military can do what ever they want?
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From Baxter
Friday, May 14, 2004, 04:32

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The incident in question happened at RLC Depot,Deepcut, Surrey, where the Army runs a Driving school. In each case the victims were shot in the head while on stag around the camp perimeter. The original line was that these kids commited suicide, but questions were raised as to why they shot themselves in the head from a downwards diagonal angle, instead of in the mouth or the temple. The Army has now allowed Scotland Yard to carry out an independent inquery into the thing. The L85A1 rifle is bullpup, and pretty short so they might have pulled it off, but it doesn't make any sense as to why they would have done it that way. In any case, it opened up another can of worms for the brass, but I don't think there was a conspiracy to cover up what happened, or if there was, I doubt it went very far- probably just a couple of off the wall NCOs up to no good; hey, it happens.(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Friday, May 14, 2004, 05:49

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From your experience, where do you stand on the issue of solders only being tried in army courts. Do you think that they should try and make it more public? I'm just thinking about internal regulators and watchdogs which didn't work in the church.( and the police can be bad in this area too! ) Most of the time it was in their best interest to cover up what the priest had done, and when they said it was being taken care off, it meant they were transfered to a new location. In the last few years they've had to bring in members of the congregation to do alternative spying

The army is different as they are soldiers after all, but should that mean they are completely unanswerable to civi st? How do we know they have caught the men who have raped and tortured in Iraq and will the punishment be sufficiant? What do you think will happen to miss england and co.? will they serve a sentence? It's been a while since I've discussed army politics.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Friday, May 14, 2004, 14:21

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

The present legislation in the UK actually makes provision for different types of crime; it the offence involved civil authorities from either GB or any other country, the offender has to answer to both the civil court and the courts martial. for instance, the RGJ guys who raped and killed the German Rep in Cyprus are now serving their time in a Cypriot prison.

For obvious reasons, some cases will have to remain classified. There is and always will be information cannot be made public, for instance a lot of the information relevent to the bloody sunday enquiry will never and can never be made open to the public, as it would expose the involvement of operating units present there who were not involved in the shooting, but whose presence would damage the peace process if made known.

The issue of external watchdogs is a sensitive one; if instituted they might very well undermine the abilities of the forces to operate to their fullest. In the late '90s, for example, the Commision for Racial Equality mounted a joint investigation into the question of Racism in the Army. When the results prove affirmitive, the CRE told the Army that if they didn't clean uo their act they would impose a Non- Discrimimation Notice, which would give the CRE the power to decid who was promoted and who was posted where, based solely in relation to their race and ethnic origin. I don't even need to explain how stupid this would have been to impose, and yet the CRE were adament that they would do it. We might hope that the watchdogs will be fair and honest, but everyone has their own agenda.

On the issue of the culprits being punished, the objective variable is the public opinion. If Ms England and ilk had done what they had done without being stupid enough to photograph themselves doing it, there might be a chance that it would be swept under the carpet. It is necessary now that someone take the rap for this, and shit has a way of rolling downhill, so to speak.

In my experience, soldiers do not usually receive the harshest of punishment for domestic offenses, such as GBH or the like. All that is necessary is for an officer to appear in a Gieves and Hawkes suit, purveying platitudes from his public-schoolboy accent and telling his lordship about what a fine soldier Tommy Atkins is, and the Judge usually let's him off with a warning, or public service at the most.

The thing about courts martial is that, if you are accused by a prominent officer, you're almost definitely going down; it matters not how good your lawyer is. You've probably seen the film 'Breaker Morant'. In any case I'm not sure which is the lesser of two evils.


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From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 19:10

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There has to be a balance. The military provides you with a place to live. The government governs how you live. With only one of them you won't have a place to live. They shouldn't interfere with each others job. And that boy you speak of just wasn't man enough to make it. Should of stayed back and educated himself. (reply to this comment
From
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 08:59

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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It’s the weak and insecure who have something to prove. Murdering someone doesn’t make you a better or stronger person. Bullies will pick on anyone and if they run out of victims they usually turn on each other.
I can’t believe that you would condone murder! There’s having issues and there’s being psycho. (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 18:08

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So if one country runs out of resources and is compelled to attack another for resources you find this to be the weak and insecure? So all the past nations that conquered the known world were weak and insecure? Possibly insecure, If I strain my brain long enough I can think of reasons for them being insecure. I think you're refering to thugs on the street that have no power yet want to look like they do. But remember that I was talking about Super Powers not super thugs.

I thought everyone is allowed to voice their own opinion here. I get accused of being a child for suggesting some are still brainwashed by berg's Pacifistic teachings. Yet you can say that I'm psycho and have issues? Seems a bit unfair to me. Your insult doesn't bother me though and won't be surprised when you give it your worst. I don't condone murder and never will. But then again, I don't call a soldier that kills on the battlefield a murderer. I was thinking about the soldier in "A Few Good Men" when I replied to your comment and sorta mixed it up. (reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 06:34

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

"So if one country runs out of resources and is compelled to attack another for resources......."?? OMG! The hypocrisy is just oozing out of that statement. That is the very thing the US purports to police on a global scale. Isn't that the reason we kicked Sadaam out of Kuwait in the first Gulf War?? You have made some valid points, but this is definitely not one of them!

Not to get all "tree hugger" on you guys, but how about we stop letting the oil companies buy out all the new energy technology, then we'd have alternative fuel sources and we wouldn't have to go to war for a resource that's on the brink of depletion anyway?? Just a thought!!(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Friday, May 14, 2004, 04:36

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
You can sure go ahead and try, my dear! (reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Friday, May 14, 2004, 07:50

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Actually, I have been trying. I try by using the most powerful tool I have...my vote. My vote goes to politicians who recognize the need to invest resources and money in new energy technologies as opposed to sqeezing every last drop of oil out of the earth just to make a few wealthy men even wealthier. The technology is there, trust me. I have a friend in DC who is a lawyer for a major energy corporation. His job on a daily basis consists of seeking out new alternative technologies and buying the copyrights to squash any competition.

Incidentally, John Kerry has the best environmental plan I've ever seen. It's puts emphasis not only on environmentally sound policies, but offers ways that these policies can be economically feasable as well. Anyone who is interested can download this PDF file. http://www.johnkerry.com/pdf/long_enviro.pdf

I also try by driving a car that gets 45 miles/gallon and even then, I drive very rarely. In the last two months, I've filled up twice. (reply to this comment

From Baxter
Friday, May 14, 2004, 14:31

(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes indeed, the vote is powerful, as the last US elections demonstrated! Every vote counts!(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Friday, May 14, 2004, 11:02

(Agree/Disagree?)
I agree the technology is out there. Frmrjoyish, it's a real pleasure your in the world! There is so much we can do in our daily live's, I use my vote too as so many people in this world haven't got the freedom to vote, and it would be a shame to waste it. I started buying coffee in bulk from cafe direct as they miss out the fat cat middle man and pay the coffee growers a fair wage. Last night on the news they did a report on the opening of a *fair trade* coffee shop chain just opening in the U.K. (reply to this comment
From yay
Friday, May 14, 2004, 10:33

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Well hey, now it looks like I have a reason to vote for Kerry in addition to getting rid of Bush -- he bears the fmrjoyish stamp of environmental approval!(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 21:36

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Agree/Disagree?)

America being a hypocrite I believe everyone agrees on. I've already mentioned how America is after the oil and is only disguising that with righteous notions of liberation for the peoople. I even called them hypocrites myself somewhere. If you were referring to my statement as "hypocrisy" then you are wrong or misunderstood what I said.

Your 2nd paragraph was very interesting and something I've never given any thought. If something was figured out to stop the oil companies from manipulating the market we'd all be better off. (reply to this comment

From
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 05:35

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The issue of solider murdering another solider has nothing to do with if a country will attack another one. Sorry to break it to you, but you personally are not a super power. Globalisation, organisations, governments (not stupid presidents), the media, and economics control the world we live in. All of them are needed to keep each in check.
Either do us a favour and sign up or distinguish reality from computer games.
(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 21:28

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America is the super power, not me. I'm well aware of the examples you laid out. But you forgot one, the military. There are a number of countries where the military rules their people and has full control over the others.

Why is that because the way I see reality differs from yours it makes me needing a reality check? Why do you persist on making this personal? I can't recall insulting you on a personal level that warrants the insults you continue to throw at me. We each have our own opinion. (reply to this comment

From
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 05:36

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*soldier(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:12

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
No I don't. Also what group's of drunk soilder's get up to in places like turkey, where they are guest's is stomach churning and I shudder that they give us all a bad name. Any abuse needs to be identified and not covered over. We need to name and shame everyone involved, especially the ones who rape and sexually assault, otherwise we have double standards. (reply to this comment
from Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004 - 00:35

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
One night, George W. Bush is awakened by George Washington's ghost in the White House. Bush asks: "George, what is the best thing I could do to help the country?"

"Set an honest and honorable example, just as I did," Washington advises.

The next night, the ghost of Thomas Jefferson moves through the dark bedroom. "Tom," George W. Bush asks, "what is the best thing I could do to help the country?"

"Cut taxes and reduce the size of government," Jefferson advises.

Bush isn't sleeping well the next night, and sees another figure moving in the shadows. It's Abraham Lincoln's ghost. "Abe, what is the best thing I could do to help the country?" Bush asks. Abe answers: "Go see a play."
(reply to this comment)
from Wolf
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 20:47

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Shaka, you’re right in saying that the events portrayed in these photos are mild compared to what the Iraqis have done to their own people, and would do to American prisoners if they could get away with it. The problem with your logic, however, is you seem to assume the US army is serving some useful purpose in Iraq. They are not! They should get out of there as fast as possible. The people attacking American soldiers are not terrorists, they are freedom fighters. None of the 9/11 terrorists were from Iraq. I bet George Washington would’ve been pretty disheartened if he knew Americans would become the oppressors one day. Sure, Iraq will erupt into civil war as soon as the US leaves, as a natural consequence of the chaos they started, but sooner or later Iraq will have to work out its own problems.
(reply to this comment)
From Baxter
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:41

(Agree/Disagree?)
I wouldn't go so far as to call them freedom fighters, mate! They're just engaging in the struggle to fill the power vaccuum the Yanks are about to leave.(reply to this comment
From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 09:26

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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Not all that was done by the soldiers would be seen by Iraquis as "mild compared to what the Iraqis have done to their own people," form what I understand.

Certain things have an import in one culture that they don't have in another. When the US was invading, the Iraqui information minister kept calling them "pigs" (a horrible comparison to an unclean animal for a muslim, whereas some americans have pet pigs and think Miss Piggy is cute) and saying they would greet them by threowing their shoes at them, which sounds quizzical to an american ear but to Iraquis apparently signifies that they utterly despise the target of the shoes. I understand that sexual humiliation, especially any suggestion of homosexuality is about the worst for muslims. Thus some of what happened may be unspeakably awful to them.

(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:35

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Sarge, that nice raghead just threw me a pair of Gucci's! Thanks Mr. Raghead!(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:35

(Agree/Disagree?)

Sarge, that nice raghead just threw me a pair of Gucci's! Thanks Mr. Raghead!(reply to this comment

From Nick
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 12:54

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I don't care how you cut it, being forced to simulate a sexual act is NOTHING like being tortured and beheaded on camera knowing that your family will see it.
I have a very simple solution on how to end this damn war. Dip every coalition bullet in pigs blood or fat. Then tell them that every enemy combatant that we kill we will burry with the carcass of a dead pig. This will keep them from going to heaven. (reply to this comment
From gragon
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 17:58

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Guess you've never been raped Nick! If you have, by all means share your thoughts and feelings! We're open ears! I'd love to hear how it's not really a big deal just one more time. On the other hand, if Sara D.'s still sits for your kid, you could find out exactly how big of a deal it is.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:21

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(
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Don't bring his shit into this. Stick to the fuckin topic. Unless you're willing to have the guts and say something that no one agrees with, that we can piss on. (reply to this comment
From Baxter
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:45

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Old British Army trick, huh? We pulled that one in the Indian Mutiny. (reply to this comment

From Joe H
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:00

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Yes, but just so you know, here's a list of the accusations (courtesy of bbcnews.com):


  • Prisoners were kept naked in cells, in darkness and without facilities


  • Prisoners were held for prolonged solitary confinement in cells with no daylight


  • The actions of coalition forces in arresting suspects appeared to go beyond any legitimate use of force


  • Prisoners were beaten, in one case leading to death


  • Soldiers fired on unarmed prisoners from watchtowers, killing some


  • The ill-treatment was widely tolerated, especially with regard to extracting information from Iraqis


  • Methods of physical and psychological coercion were used by the military intelligence to gain confessions

I agree that being forced to simulate a sex act is not nearly as bad as the abuses listed above(reply to this comment

From Nick
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:07

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
The key word there is acusations.

I really doubt that they fired upon inmates for just no reason and if one or two of them got a little beating so what? I don't recall you bitching when they beat up the first 2 american POW's that were shot down when this war first started.

And still, being naked and in solatary is nothing compared to what they do to their prisoners. It's not long lasting and if they prove to be inocent at the end they get to go home to their family. (reply to this comment
from Shaka
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 20:28

Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Damn, I wish I had time to answer to all these comments. I don't so this will have to do. First of all, I never said that what those soldiers did was ok. In fact, they put the lives of thousands of soldiers who are faced with death every day in greater danger than they already were if that's possible. But I do think that soldiers who live in constant fear of being blown to pieces should be given the benifit of the doubt to an extent. I know if I was in Iraq, which I may be in the not so far future, I would definitely not be the friendliest soldier. I would probably be guilty of brutality toward people who I knew would kill any American they could get their hands on. Nobody here can honestly say that if they were in the situation of our soldiers, that they would play by the rules and be shining examples of American greatness.

Those of you who say that all or most soldiers are illiterate trailer trash, show some fucking respect for the men and women who put their lives on the line for people like you every day and get little or no thanks for it, and have more guts, loyalty, and dedication than you'll ever have. Zed, you guys are doing an amazing job. Thank all of you for everything you do and have to put with for all of us at home. I only hope if I get there I can live up to all of you.

Some of you said that this disproves the image that America is trying to portray of being an example for the rest of the world. It did no such thing. The U.S. command is conducting a full investigation of these soldiers and court-martialing them. George Bush apologized to the "abused" persons and the U.S. Army is offering them financial compensation. Where in the entire Arab world would you ever see something like that? When have we recieved an apology from an enemy for the horrible acts commited on our citizens? Have we ever recieved an apology for September 11th? Has Al-Quada or any other terrorist group or any Arab government ever apologized for the cruel acts they are guilty of every day? We ARE an example to follow.

There is no doubt that the U.S. has it's flaws. The desicions made by our government are not pure. There are definitely ulterior motives for many of their "noble" decisions. But what the fuck do you want? Utopia? Not on this planet. There will never be a superpower that is not tainted by corruption. But the U.S. is the only superpower in history with a semblance of fairness and any kind of a sense of justice. (No offence to you Brits, you weren't all that bad either) Do you think you'd all be sitting in your cushy homes in front of your computers bitching about this and that if the U.S. wasn't around to keep around to keep a rein on the insane governments that abound on the far side of the world?

Zed was right, when you pick the pieces of your friends from the dust to send home to their families, then feel free to pass judgement on our military. Damn, all this typing made me hungry. Ta ta.
(reply to this comment)

From auslander
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:23

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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Recommended Movie:

"A Few Good Men" with Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson.(Demi Moore's not bad either) One of my favourites.

Especially Jack's line, "You can't handle the truth!"

And then the following psycho Nicholson rant -- brilliant!

Col. Nathan Jessup (to Kaffee):

"Son, we live in a world that has walls, and those walls have to be guarded by men with guns. Who's gonna do it? You? You, Lieutenant Weinberg? I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom.

"You weep for Santiago and you curse the marines. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know: that Santiago's death, while tragic, probably saved lives. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives.

"You don't want the truth because, deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall, you need me on that wall. We use words like honor, code, loyalty. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something. You use them as a punchline.

"I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said "thank you" and went on your way. Otherwise I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand at post.

"Either way, I don't give a damn what you think you are entitled to."


Nathan Jessup lives! (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:37

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It surprises me that you would agree with what he said. From your other comments I would think that you agreed with the courts ruling. The way I saw it is; although awful what happened to Santiago, Col. Nathan Jessup did what needed to be done to keep America safe. Alot of people don't know what really goes on inorder for them to live comfortable lives. These Iraqi abuses are only the tip of the iceberg compared to the rest. The public just don't know about it and never will. They'd rather sit comfortably on their couch, drive their SUV's, watch TV and play golf.(reply to this comment

From moon beam
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 07:29

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

That sounds like what you'd like but the majority of people don't want to sit on their arses and allow these things to be done in our name. Were it not for fraudulent elections and a dumbed down press, change would be quicker.(think of the anti-war protests around the world) Also unfortunately, to ruin those (very few-think zerby and co) comfortable lives, these things ARE coming out to be held up as the dirty stinky laundry it is. I hold hope in our future in an age where events are not as hidden. Remember, Nelson Mandela was released after 27 yrs for fighting the apartheid in S.A The world was watching, they used their voice, we are one step closer!(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:02

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
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Man you're naive. When you find this utopia please post it. Human ideals and reality are 2 very different things. You judge the one that protects you, enables you to study and work. I'd like to see you do a better job. Humans aren't perfect and soldiers are far from it. Actually, war is far from perfect and humane. But that's all we got. If you seriously believe the world can change for the better by human hand then you should start praying more desperately. The way I see it; if America goes down someone else will take its place. Could be worse.(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 07:23

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Not so. I don't leave anything to prayer, that has been proven not to work and all it does is defer our responsibility we each have to our fellow man, the only way we can change is to get rid of your type of attitude -Fear is crippling and makes humans lash out .

Oxymoron-"change for the better by human hand....better start praying" ??When humans realise that god solves nothing, only we can then we'll be further on our way to "utopia".(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 17:56

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What can I say. Good Luck! Many have failed where you're trying to succeed.

One last thing. You said: "the only way we can change is to get rid of your type of attitude". I haven't gone as far as to say those who think like me should get rid of your kind of attitude. I may have used some profanity and suggested that some are still affected by berg's Pacifist teachings. But to suggest that the only way you can achieve your goal is to eliminate my way of thinking, I find abit extreme. (reply to this comment

From moon beam
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 07:38

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

By my reasoning, getting rid of my type of attitude, the world would be more open to abuse and who then would try and stop (you) from ravaging every country in the world to keep (you) in your comfy house and big gas guzzling cars? Bergs pacifist attitude was epidemic, a culture they were made to believe was godly and christian but what they were seeing was opposite. Hiroshima had just occurred after all. Berg was extreme in most other things.

I don't think it's impossible that people still hold your type of attitude but it certainly hinders the efforts being made.

I know only too well the "evil" that is around us but it isn't something to be frightened of. It ALLl can't be changed overnight, I agree, but that dosen't deter me from still trying to make the difference, (not just leaving it to prayer) so that in years to come (If we have many-Not because of god but due to feuding religion's) even after my death, I can or my decendants will see I played my part. I have taken great inspiration from looking back at events and people who have all played their part. End of slavery;womans right to vote; end of apartheid; end of occupation of India; Corporal punnishment; capital punishment in most countries.. the list goes on!

I respect key players like Mandela, Ghandi, Martin luther King, and many others. Each one of us has the choice to add to that list, to look further than ourselves and give the next generation hope. Don't forget our cult took hope away from us. I didn't think I would live to see my 18 birthday. It would be a grave disrespect to their memories to allow that to die with them.

Death, you see from history that millions have lived and died before us and added to life's rich tapestry. It is fustrating to think I won't be around to see the achievement of some of them. This is why I see religion as a disease because it gives our responsibility away and replaces it with an attitude of "Fuck it we're all going to die anyway" Notice how our cult created a whole new reality for themselves, one in which they didn't have to die, where they'd be around, ruling no less. And interestingly, alot of cults formed and heavily recruited when standard religon was being eroded by science and that safe existence of living forever was questioned for the first time. Then think how they must have felt, "we are supposed to be christians and yet our country is full of greed violence, in-equality, disrespect and a fear of power. we just blew up Hiroshima WTF?????" They were ripe for the picking, because it is so ingrained in people to want to feel safe and that their is a higher plan for us all, they could reject one form and take on another, but not leave it altogether.

I feel christians in history have created situations time and time again that antagonise and set themselves apart. We see the techniqes that bind, create fear, control, brainwashing, eye for an eye, demonisation of people's and culture's, by powerful individuals and small elites who become motivated, or may always have been, by greed, power, perversion's and control. Our connections with each other and our ability to make an informed judgement have been consistantly sabbotaged.

Think of the Sean Connery film " The man who would be king" for thosands of years only scholors and kings could read and they merely made it up as they went along as the situation suited. Hence all the contradictions resulting in the bible. People were afraid of the unknown, the sword and the lord. Their was no safety from being killed or having to kill so they hung on to things like "you'll get your reward in heaven/you'll get your 17 virgin's" to make the sacrifice bearable. We have moved on from this clearly but there is still a hell of a long way to go. So thanks for wishing me luck as I do you:)(reply to this comment

From auslander
Monday, May 10, 2004, 22:14

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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I didn't say I agreed with Jessup's point of view. I just said that the rant was in itself brilliant -- in true demented Nicholson style -- and typifies the mindset of many who say that civilians should not question the military or their tactics ,and that the military should not be held accountable.

I agree with the court's decision, and I agree with you that the atrocities in Iraq are only the tip of the iceberg. Those are the atrocities that were documented. So much else is going on that we will never know about.

Sadly, it seems to take a lot to rouse the average American out of his/her lethargy. Enough body bags might do it, especially of reservists.

Hate to talk like this, but many Americans seem to only value American lives. Screw Uncle Rashid and his raghead countrymen -- they're only Arab and Muslim terrorists.

"We invaded their country, liberated them, offered them democracy, now they don't want our democracy, or our occupation and exploitation, so we'll kill them -- ungrateful terrorist pricks, after all we've done for them."

Nathan Jessup would have been right at home in Iraq. Strangely life imitates art. The U.S. sent the commander of the prisons in Guantanamo to "clean up" the U.S. prisons in Iraq. (reply to this comment

From Shaka
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:32

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes that did fucking rock, didn't it? I'm copying that down into my documents, thank you.(reply to this comment
from Tea
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 20:27

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Just think what would have happened had we seen photographs of U.S. service men and women detained in China, stacked nude, row upon row, hooded, dog leash not excluded. We would have gone to war. You can throw any explanation my way as to how Abu Ghraib is somehow different, but the facts remain the same: once captured, detainees should be afforded basic human rights and must be treated humanely.
(reply to this comment)
From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:42

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
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Just for your information, abuses do happen in China and America does know about it. The reason America hasn't invaded them is because they're also a super power.

This reasoning does not make sense to me: "once captured, detainees should be afforded basic human rights and must be treated humanely."

If the war is over then that's fine. But how you going to get information out of a prisoner if you treat him like a stranger on the street? You gotta twist that shit out of him. Information that can save your comrades lives. (reply to this comment

From Tea
Monday, May 10, 2004, 22:23

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

"[H]ow [are] you going to get information out of a prisoner if you treat him like a stranger on the street? You gotta twist that shit out of him. Information that can save your comrades lives."
Let's remember this logic when we start seeing photos of U.S. service men and women being detained by our enemies— stacked nude, row upon row, hooded, dog leash not excluded.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 23:02

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Did you not see the Fallujah mutilation? I suggest you not wait and check the news. (reply to this comment
From Tea
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 00:39

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I was in Bosnia and Croatia during the war. I’ve seen worse. Far worse. And no. Not simply from the comfort of my home with the remote control in one hand and a bowl of Ramen in the other, all as I surf the Web and trash-talk between mouthfuls. But up close. And personal. And with my own two eyes. Where the victims were people you knew, friends of yours, or friends and relatives of close friends and acquaintances. Where the sound of Kalashnikovs and AK-47s were the modern soundtrack of your daily life. Where the Mujahadine, fresh from Afghanistan, lent their Muslim brothers a helping hand. Where you take the long way around preferring to walk on solid ground to avoid possible land mines. Where you drink running water only to be told later by locals that those little particles in your glass that you swallowed were actually human remains that were dumped into the wells by the Serbs last weekend. Where you lived off of cabbage and octopus, and those were the good days.
It took me half a year to reacclimatize myself to normal civilian life. And I wasn’t even military. Just a young missionary kid trying to do what was right. And for all the atrocities you saw on both sides of the conflict, you were on the side of the underdog. You were on the side of the Croats. And yes, the Bosnians too. Where you try to excuse them for their inhumanity the way we’re trying to excuse private England and Co. for theirs and for good reason too. After all, we were told, “You should have seen what the Serbs did to us”. Well, no. We shouldn’t have seen it. Hearing it was bad enough. And those Serbs you did run into, “You should have seen what those Croats did to us under Hitler. Fucking Nazis”. And they were right too, of course.
So, you find yourself running back and forth and all over the Dalmatian coast looking for answers. And the only cohesiveness you find, of all places, is from both the Serbs and Croats who chorus loudly together something about how we should have seen what those fucking Moors had done to them some five hundred years ago. “How do you suppose they got here in the first place”, they ask. Eye for an eye. Where it’s your enemy’s eye. Both of them.
And that’s what we’re seeing in Palestine too. Murder is murder. And blowing yourselves up and teaching your kids to become pop-terrorists won’t change a damn thing. Only that there might not be any Palestinians left in fifty years if they don’t open up to a little course correction every now and then.
Didn’t people learn anything from history? Some did, I suppose. The Serbs and Croats on trial at The Hague are some that did not.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 00:53

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
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The World is a fucked up place and all we can do is try to save our back yard. I still don't see how treating prisoners nice during war will bring peace. The Christian notion of loving your enemies only works when your enemy is a Christian. I feel bad for those people that have to live in situations like that when all they want is to live life peaceably with whatever color their neighbor is. But the World will always be fucked up and that's just how it is. That is why I don't blame the soldiers in Iraq for what they did. They saw their comrades getting blown up and if they abused some prisoners to get information or revenge then whats the big deal. (reply to this comment
From gragon
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:03

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Maybe because it's illegal to do otherwise? (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:24

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Agree/Disagree?)
Meaning what? Have you ever J-walked?(reply to this comment
From Mr Myopia
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 09:38

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

"I still don't see how treating prisoners nice during war will bring peace."

Don't you get the point? It's called breaking the cycle of violence. Sure it's harder to uphold international human rights for someone you hate, people don't violate the human rights of people they like, they violate the rights of people they hate and people who they can find justification for violating their rights ("they'd do it to us too" is one example). A major line between civilised societies and the tribal warriors of bible times is that we have legal codes that are adhered to and they are followed. If we go back to family feuds and avenging past attrocities (which they then repay on us ad nauseum), eventually everybody is perpetually trying to get revenge on everybody else -- if that's the case, lets save society the trouble and have a mass suicide.

"They saw their comrades getting blown up and if they abused some prisoners to get information or revenge then whats the big deal."

If I see a murder and the guy runs and noone else is being threatened, I can call the police or even try to restrain the guy till the police arrive. Even if he killed my brother and ran, if I charged down the street with a 9mm after him and popped him in the head, I would likely be charged with murder or at least manslaughter.

A more realistic picture of what happened there is if I think my neighbor across the street is a control freak and therefore I (Bush) must liberate his wife and kids from him and give them democracy. I also heard about a terrorist hiding somewhere, and since he's mean to his wife, he must also be hiding a terrorist. So I charge into his house with my gun and tie him up in the basement and his kid attacks me (or I think the guy who attacks me is his kid), at which point I decide to abuse his kid to get "justifiable" revenge. Then his kid grows up "fully justified" to abuse my kids to avenge it, at which point my kids repay it...

Alright, enuf, I'm not saying the guards were the only ones responsible (Rumsfield let it happen), but if you really believe that then I guess if someone breaks into your house and rapes your wife and kids, no court or cop should do anything because "the World will always be fucked up and that's just how it is"

(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:28

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Do I get your point? Nope, and sure glad I don't. Exister laid my view out pretty clear below. Don't you people get it. You can't break the cycle of violence. This is how humans are. Dog eat dog. Super Powers invade others to keep themselves on top. If it wasn't America it be someone else. This has nothing to do with whether I believe in it. I'm merely accepting the situation and doing my part to survive in it. And don't try to relate this to TF. It aint the same thing. (reply to this comment

From
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 05:46

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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You CAN change the cycle of violence as you can change the cycle of abuse by refusing to be a part of it. It's a leap thats for sure and not many are equiped to make it (sometimes thru no fault of their own) but humanes are astounding, I was abused and the worst abusers in history have been abused, I could well have become an abuser myself, but I didn't. I made a conscious choice. I don't see how you can have one rule for one thing and another for another. (reply to this comment
From lucidchick
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:38

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Ah, but humans *can* go against their drives and instincts. Humans *can* choose to go against what feels easier, in order to do what is right.

The Dog-eat-Dog aspect is not the *only* fact about the human animal. The human animal is able to achieve feats of great complexity and difficulty, even some which have no apparent gratification of instinct.

"If it wasn't America it be someone else," but let's make sure America does not lose the reasons many would prefer that it *not* be someone else with the biggest sticks and toys. Else that refrains will become meaningless. I am sure no Iraqui feels better that it is indeed a Yank putting skivvies on their head, because Allah Forbid that a Russian person should be putting undies on their head!(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 19:03

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Agree/Disagree?)

Sounds like an advertisement for the new train to utopia. If you want to believe the *can* and *can* be my guest and I respect that. I wish the reality of today was produced from that way of thought. However, reality isn't like that and never will be.



(reply to this comment

From lucidchick
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 19:31

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
The train doesn't stop at Utopia, the conductor increases speed 200% when we pass through Utopia because we are leery of the neighborhood (but people from that 'hood can take the train too, as long as they travel 50 miles to the Moderation stop, then they can get on). (reply to this comment
From exister
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 09:42

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Clearly if we had sat them all down and served them tea and crumpets they would have been very forthcoming with all pertinent information concerning the insurgency. Cheerio to all you pacifists! I am sure the world will be peachy when you are all in charge.(reply to this comment
From
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 08:50

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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No but training them, funding them and letting Saddam Hussein go the first time around didn’t really help. I wonder how many of them were educated in the West. Not to forget depicting them as a bad guy in every God Bless America film released. (reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 12:40

(Agree/Disagree?)
Incidentally it was the pacifistic attitude that allowed Saddam to go the first time around. It is also a part of our modern society to allow foreigners into our countries to benefit from our educational systems, and even to work and enjoy the benefits of our political system.

I agree with you on one point at least, this would have all been far better had they finished the job the first time around, and actually gotten rid of Saddam Hussein way back in '91 - rather than giving in to the peaceniks and instead crippling the country under over a decade of - IMO even more inhumane than the war - sanctions (THIS was the UN's big solution to the problem!)

Far better to get it done and over with, and let Iraq get back to rebuilding itself as soon as possible - it's better for everyone that way: the Iraqis, the Americans, and the whole world!(reply to this comment
From
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 05:40

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I thought it was Bush's father. (reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:24

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
If all we should do is save our own backyard, then we should get the hell out of Iraq's yard. They weren't the ones who attacked us on our turf, contrary to what Bush would have everyone believe.(reply to this comment
from Jules
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 15:47

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Last month, a friend of mine was abducted in Iraq by extremists. He is a Canadian, who was born in Syria and immigrated here with his parents when he was a teenager. I don’t know what his life was like in Syria, but in Canada it was not easy. After experiencing a lot of difficult things he got his life together, put himself through university and obtained a degree in social work. Since then he has gone on to work with children and youth at risk and is one of the kindest and most compassionate people I know. He is fiercely committed to protecting children and was working with a humanitarian organization in Iraq to bring aid to Iraqi children. He was interrogated and tortured by his captors for eleven days and forced to “confess” to being an Israeli spy. He spent his 33rd birthday in captivity. He was released on April 16, due in part to the efforts of the Canadian government and members of the local Iraqi community, and has returned to Canada. My friend has said that he plans to return to Iraq to resume his work as soon as it's possible. When asked why on earth he would want to go back, he said that what happened to him was caused by common thugs and was not representative of the Iraqi people, whom he was proud to be helping.
(reply to this comment)
From auslander
Monday, May 10, 2004, 19:28

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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The Sound of Freedom?

General Mark Kimmitt, the deputy director of coalition operations, told an Iraqi journalist earlier this year that the children of Iraq should not be terrified by low-flying US helicopters.

"What we would tell the children of Iraq is that the noise they hear is the sound of freedom."

from the leader, today's Guardian.(reply to this comment

from sarafina
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 14:05

Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I must say I was pretty shocked at a lot of these answers but interesting to know where everyone stands on this issue. I was just talking with my roommate the other night on this very topic. Neither of us saw anything wrong with what that girl did and we both felt simialar to shaka's reaction to all this. I thought it was fine what that girl did and I don't believe we should have had to appoligise for anything. After what has been done to our soldiers including the rape of more then one woman, so what if they throw some panties on their head and laugh a bit at them. I'd say the UN has gone overboard with the POW rights in the first place. I also believe that if the county we are fighting against breaks those rules themselves we should not have to honor anything of the sort with them. Why should we sit around and pamper them when the have no regard whatsoever for even their own peoples lives much less ours. All this crap about "ohhh we're America we should be setting a sample" thats a bunch of rubbish of you ask me. All I have to say is I'm with you on this one Shaka!
(reply to this comment)
From Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:25

(Agree/Disagree?)
VOTE SARAFINA!!! I'm getting that made into a bumper sticker.(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:32

(Agree/Disagree?)

Ok thanks for the support there but that was really unnecessary and not really helping the situation.(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:19

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Jules, you banned JF for endorsing the pedophilia of Berg and his ilk. Could you explain to me how Sarafina's approval of Ms England's behaviour is different? This comment makes me want to vomit.(reply to this comment

From Joe H
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:00

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

To clarify, I find Sarafina's comment to be similar to the one that got JF banned because they both expressed approval of illegal, morally reprehensible behavior. Granted, sexual abuse of minors is a soft-topic for most of us, but where do we draw the line? Here's Jules original rationale for banning JF:

"These statements are in support of despicable crimes against children and when it comes to these issues, it’s not enough to simply not endorse these opinions. To stand idly by or sit and speculate as to the seriousness of the act while crimes such as incest, pedophilia and torture are being committed is in itself vile."

Now, read it with the words "against children," "incest," and "pedophilia" removed:

"These statements are in support of despicable crimes and when it comes to these issues, it’s not enough to simply not endorse these opinions. To stand idly by or sit and speculate as to the seriousness of the act while crimes such as torture are being committed is in itself vile."

Now, read the part of Sarafina's comment that shocks me: "Neither of us saw anything wrong with what that girl did." She sees NOTHING WRONG with that prison guard's actions! That's just wonderful. I'm willing to discuss what was going through the soldiers' heads when they did this, debate whether or not they are culpable or if higher-ups are to blame, maybe even entertain ideas from the moral relativists about it being a necessary evil or something like that, but how can you find NOTHING WRONG with the way our soldiers treat the enemy, yet be outraged at the way they treat us?

If Jules is more concerned with the UN's Rights of the Child than with the Geneva Convention, than that's her call to make. But, I'm not going to pretend like people who support torture and abuse are worthy of my time. (reply to this comment

From Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 20:55

Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Joe, I'm just curious. Why have you singled Sara out for insults? Why not me who started all this, or Shackled, exister, Zed, or anyone else who agrees with me on the subject of the scum who we're fighting? I was under the impression that she is a friend of yours! Is a difference of opinion really a good reason for you to start insulting her by insinuating that she's stupid and comparing her to a pervert like F?

You know fina. You know the kind of warm, caring person she is. You know her a lot better than many people on this site who read comments and form impressions of people based on those comments without really knowing them. I don't agree with you on many subjects, particularly politics, but I've always respected what you write. I thought you were smarter than this. With your mighty brain did you ever consider that maybe she didn't word it exactly like she meant to, and came off sounding more heartless than she meant? Not that I disagree with what she said. I have no qualms about the rough treatment of an enemy, though I wouldn't stoop to the levels used by these goddamn psychotic animals who haven't a shred of humanity like they've proven once again today by slicing the head of an innocent civilian.

Anyway, all that to say that you shouldn't stoop so low as to publicly insult a friend that anyone would be lucky to have over a difference of opinion. (reply to this comment

From Jules
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 17:38

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

How on earth did this become, once again, about me?

There are many many things written on here I personally consider morally reprehensible. There are threads supporting racism and hate crimes, drug use, anti-abortionists, the death penalty, Facism, sexism, the Family, deadbeat parents and violence, to name a few. These are my personal opinions. Sometimes I state my views, sometimes I don't.

I stand by my "Joe H edited" statement. I do happen to think that supporting crimes such as torture is despicable and vile. I care deeply and personally about this issue. My friend, who indisputedly was in Iraq for the purest of motives, was detained and tortured. The sadistic brutality of these young soldiers will only inflame and incite more retaliation. The people who will end up being hurt the worst are other innocents, not those with tanks, guns and comrades to defend them. However, whether or not I agree with Sara's or anyone else's opinion is completely irrelevant as to whether or not they can write here.

I think I already explained where I draw the line and for the sake of clarity, I'll repeat it. If this was a web site for POW's or victims of military torture, a statement like Sara's would revictimize the participants and would be cause for being blocked. If this was a web site for recovering addicts, the frequent promotion of drug use would be inappropriate and cause for being blocked. If this was a web site for immigrants or an ethnic group, racist comments would be cause for being blocked. If it was a web site for dyslexics, you would have been blocked a long time ago. The site is for people raised in the Family, many of whom are sexual abuse survivors, and that is why Mr. F's comments were unacceptable.

Living in a free society and the right to free speech means that people have the absolute right to their own opinions, even if they are considered immoral or simply unpopular. It's ironic that in almost all of the debates that end up with people storming off or deciding that I am evil and they hate me, I don't even agree with the people or opinions I am assumed to be supporting. What I am defending is their right to their views and their right to speak those views. At some point, almost every participant has been (or will be) "ganged up on" by the other participants for espousing a viewpoint that the majority does not agree with. If there's one thing I dislike about this site, it's this tendency. Voltaire said "Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so too.'' I agree. A sound argument can stand on it's own, it doesn't need an opinion poll.

What I believe in is doing my best to live by the code: "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it". (reply to this comment

From Joe H
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 12:37

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Jules, I understood and agreed with your choice on where to draw the line the first time you explained it, but I was in the middle of writing my clarification so I thought I'd go ahead and post it so people would understand why I made the comparison. My initial question to you was just that - a question, not a demand for the banning of anyone. Thanks for supporting our right to say stupid shit, I know I've availed myself of it on many an occasion.(reply to this comment
From Elle
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 08:46

(Agree/Disagree?)
Wow, I'm impressed Joe!(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:49

(Agree/Disagree?)
I believe I already wrote you on this matter Joe. I explained my feelings at the time and was quite pissed off at the whole situation. But Leave it to you to take one word out of context. So let me re-phrase it for you then . "I didn't see "MUCH" wrong instead of NOTHING" actually I'll change my whole comment just for you Joe omit "Neither of us saw anything wrong with what that girl did " and replace with....

"Though Elizabeth may have been out of line (according to the Geneva code of standards and I'm sure will be dealt with appropriately for misrepresenting our country)" I personally felt no pity nor empathy for those in question." I don't believe there is a law requiring us to feel pity is there?

Oh and you say "But, I'm not going to pretend like people who support torture and abuse are worthy of my time." Well then why are you so concerned about Iraq then? Their whole system of life is built around abuse and torture of their own people and ours. They shoot women in the heads just for not wearing a veils in public. So excuse me if I don't feel sorry for them. Some I know have gone through just as much abuse in the family if not more in some cases so maybe that's why it doesn't seem all that harsh to me. In my opinion we treat them pretty good considering.(reply to this comment
From katrim4
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:56

(Agree/Disagree?)

I could be wrong here, but I don't think Iraq was quite that extremist when we went in there. Afghanistan for sure was. I think Saudi Arabia and Iran are as well. From what I've read though and from some TV interviews (which I admit are not the best source of information) Iraq and Jordan are (were) some of the leading Islamic countries when it came to women.

This is actually a topic of great interest to me so if anyone has any real information on this please post it.(reply to this comment

From auslaender
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 23:04

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Actually, Saddam shaped Iraq into a more or less a secular society. There was more religious freedom there than in many Arab countries. The old deputy leader, Tarik Aziz, was a nominal Christian.

Yes, many people were deeply and fanatically religious, but many weren't. And they survived and had a good life, as good as one could have.

Saddam did try and take on an Islamic scent by building a few mosques and stuff, but that was more or less PR to garner sympathy with other Arabs.

However it is telling that Osama reviled Saddam -- publicly. Osama -- an arch fundamentalist -- saw Saddam as a heathen backslidden infidel.

That's what made it so ridiculous when Bush and Wolfy tried to play the Osama-and Saddam-were-in-bed-together card before the invasion. Anyone who knew anything knew that these two were ideologically opposed to each other. (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 23:34

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Agree/Disagree?)
Are you also Auslander? (reply to this comment
From auslaender
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 23:47

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Agree/Disagree?)
yeah, but JW said I was spelling it wrong, so I changed it. I can't do the two dot thing on my computer, so I took this spelling. Hope you can understand it.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 00:25

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Agree/Disagree?)
It's cool. I have no idea how to pronounce it but that's not a problem. Originally I thought you were from Australia. AUS meaning Aussie; LANDER meaning living there. Australia's a wonderful place and I'd want to retire there or Mexico. Never been to South America but I hear it's great there as well. So what does Auslaender mean? (reply to this comment
From auslaender
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 00:57

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Agree/Disagree?)

It means foreigner, or outsider.

First part is pronounced like ouse as in house, then lander. do it all with a slight German accent. Stress on the first syllable.

nice debating with you, by the way. no hard feelings.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 18:14

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Likewise. I apologize if I've gone too far in any replies to you. When debating with a guy in person I tend to use profanity and speak my opinion strongly and end up doing the same here. I try to be more polite with woman but most of the time I can't tell when it's only a screen name or I get too carried away.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 00:20

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Agree/Disagree?)

It's cool. I have no idea how to pronounce it but that's not a problem. Originally I thought you were from Australia. AUS meaning Aussie; LANDER meaning living there. Australia's a wonderful p(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 00:20

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Agree/Disagree?)

It's cool. I have no idea how to pronounce it but that's not a problem. Originally I thought you were from Australia. AUS meaning Aussie; LANDER meaning living there. Australia's a(reply to this comment

From sarafina
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 17:51

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
No, you are right in general. Iraq is ahead a bit in women's rights in compare to some other countries but still pretty bad. I should not have just said Iraq but rather Muslim Countries in general. There is a site which shows live footage of some of this but I don't think it appropriate to post it. In all honestly I do feel great pity towards the women and children of Iraq as it still is a very chauvinistic country. I just do not find much pity for the adult men there (in general) Then again I also feel many are just victims of a forced society without many choices. Maybe it's solely due to the environment they are raised in and they just don't know better.

If I do let go of a lot of the anger I feel on this subject I probably do agree with most that there is a better way to deal with all this but honestly there are no real simple solutions. All I know is the president of our country carries a lot on his shoulders and I for one will not critise him unless I was prepared to take on role and thought I could do better. Which is how I feel about a lot of comments on here. Everyone thinks they know better or they have the solution on what he should do. I wonder what each would do if they were in his position with so many to please and so many rules to follow and so many crying for revenge and yet he alone has to answer for our country. I pity him the most and would never want to be in his position.
(reply to this comment
From
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 10:54

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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Well it's real hard to hear that sort of giving up attitude from people as if Bush and Blair had listened to all the arguments at the time all this Could have been avoided but I don't like the line "I told you so".. But thats whats happened. Just look back to the comments and threads on here before it happened. (reply to this comment
From Joe H
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 17:13

Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes, but Bush counts on people like Sarafina who don't know the difference between Iraq and Afghanistan to support his policies.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 21:27

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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You saying he should count on guys like you that only see one side of the coin. (reply to this comment
From Ty Erdovjo
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 05:31

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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Don't be so sure about that. Joe doesn't care half as much about the topic itself as about finding faults in other people's arguments (or even better, loopholes in the Moving-On "rulebook").

Ty Erdovjo
Director of the GJIT Fund(reply to this comment

From Ty Erdovjo
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 05:30

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Agree/Disagree?)

Don't be so sure about that. Joe doesn't care half as much about the topic itself as about finding faults in other people's arguments (or even better, loopholes in the Moving-On "rulebook").

Ty Erdovjo
Director of the GJIT Fund(reply to this comment

From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 03:59

(Agree/Disagree?)

I consider this narrow-minded view of abuse in the Middle East to be a by-product of the anti-Muslim sentiment so prevalent in today's media. The assumption seems to be that all abuses are somehow religiously motivated, and that therefore because Saddam was somewhat tolerant to religious minorities that his abuses were less than those in other countries.

Saddam Hussein's regime was not a religious one, therefore he had no need to specifically attack religious minorities (although he came down good and hard on the Shiite Muslims - incidentally, the same ones who are causing most of the problems now.) So, although he allowed religious pluralism, he was still a tyrannical ruler, who allowed no political dissent. The abuses his people suffered under him were at least as bad as those which are attributed to Islamic regimes, therefore I find the fact that he was religiously more tolerant than other countries in the region to be irrelevent to the degree of suffering he imposed.

Saddam used religion when it suited him (calling on Jihad during the Gulf War, etc) but overall he could scarcely be considered a Muslim. His persecution was therefore against political opponents, or racial minorities (the Kurds for example) - I don't consider this to be any less horrific than to target someone because of their religious persuasion.(reply to this comment

From Jules
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:10

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Joe, perhaps you could work this out privately with Sara. The principle of banning someone because of their political views is a bit cultish IMO. People have the right to their own views.

The issue with Mr. F is that this is a web site specifically for people who grew up in the Family, many of whom were the victims of sexual abuse themselves. Endorsing and promoting the paedophila of the group revictimizes these people. If this was a site for former POWs then Sara's comment would be inappropriate. Since it is not, she has the right to her opinion, whether other people agree with her or not.(reply to this comment

From Nick
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:09

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

How does this subject even come close to Frampys situation? I mean if you are going to argue a point at least use realistic comparisons so you don't look like a total idiot.
You can have your different opinion if you want, no matter how demented it is at times, but comparing her to Frampy is hitting below the belt. (reply to this comment
From Vicky
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:57

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I agree with you, Joe!

I'm very sorry you feel that way, Sarafina. Of course you are entitled to your opinion, but I SO do not agree with you! What those soldiers did is utterly and unequivocally repugnant! -- Uncivilised and morally WRONG and I think those people who participated in these acts are unworthy of serving their country.

I am not saying that I don't understand your sentiments because to a certain degree I do, but I continue to hold the firm opinion that no one should take pleasure in the suffering of another human being. I do not accept the assertion that the horrors and atrocities of war give anyone an excuse to rejoice in the degradation of another human being.

Don't get me wrong; I have a huge amount of respect for those who are courageous enough to go to the front lines and fight for their country when it is necessary, but I feel justified in saying that I have absolutely no respect for those people who were involved in these despicable acts of sadism, violence and unnecessary degradation of human beings. (reply to this comment

From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:34

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Vicky you are eloquent. Not only in this comment either.(reply to this comment
From Vicky
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:55

(Agree/Disagree?)
Why, thank you! Many times I wish I could do better, actually...(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:15

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Which is fine. You are entitled to you opinion just as I am. I think there are others on here posting the exact same sentiments as I have so I don't know why my opinion again is the one being attacked. Just because I disagree with you, you don't see me comparing you to pedophiles. A lot of U.S. soldiers feel the same way as I do about this situation. I have no problem with people disagreeing but that is no reason to attack me personally.(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 06:31

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I totally agree!!! Let's stick to attacking the arguments and not the people!!

(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:40

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All my friends agree with me too. Too many pacifists here, still brainwashed by berg's turn the other cheek, be the bigger man bull shit. (reply to this comment

From Haunted
Friday, May 14, 2004, 04:34

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Being the "bigger man" as you put it is NOT Berg BS. Perhaps you should read Taoism or many other enlightened roads of thought on the subject before attributing anything to Berg.

in my experience, Berg took a lot of very good ideas from very intellectual thinkers and philosophers and twisted them to serve his own purpose. There are very few original thoughts that he came up with, and those usually involved some sick and demented sexual fantasy.

I don't recall who said it on this thread, but just because people have a different opinion, doesn't mean they're still following Berg's teachings. For my own part, I threw the proverbial baby out with the bathwater a long time ago. (reply to this comment

From Haunted
Friday, May 14, 2004, 04:33

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Being the "bigger man" as you put it is NOT Berg BS. Perhaps you should read Taoism or many other enlightened roads of thought on the subject before attributing anything to Berg.

in my experience, Berg took a lot of very good ideas from very intellectual thinkers and philosophers and twisted them to serve his own purpose. There are very few original thoughts that he came up with, and those usually involved some sick and demented sexual fantasy.

I don't recall who said it on this thread, but just because people have a different opinion, doesn't mean they're still following Berg's teachings. For my own part, I threw the proverbial baby out with the bathwater a long time ago. (reply to this comment

From Vicky
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 10:06

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I hate to say this because it's such a generalised statement, but I'm going to anyway because I'm in a slightly catty mood today:

We all know that a majority (Or, if I'm feeling particularly gracious, at least a significant minority) of Americans are completely ignorant about world affairs and don't have a clue about anything that goes on outside of The States... So, your statement concerning your friends' opinions doesn't add much credence to your view on this issue, as far as I'm concerned. In any case, I don't particularly care whether you or your friends agree with me.

By the way, I think it's hugely insulting to each of us to bring cult teachings into this. It's a childish way of trying to win this argument and doesn't do anything to convince me to change my mind. Perhaps you meant it as an insult, I don't know. I can fully accept that you are a different person to me and that you have a right to your opinions, can you not allow me the same respect and leave off the unnecessary accusations of cult-thinking?

It all comes down to the simple fact that some people are idealists and others are not. I prefer to believe that there is some good in most people; I prefer to believe that one can choose to behave with dignity and integrity; I prefer to believe that people can control their base instincts if they really want to; I prefer to hope against hope that some day our governments will learn that they can't do whatever the hell they like, that we, the people, demand a degree of accountability.

I don't see why that frame of mind gets you so uptight!(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 18:28

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I don't live in the US and only 1 of my friends is American. We watch or read the news everyday and because we're an international company there are alot of nationalities to draw various opinions from.

I apologize for suggesting that some are still brainwashed by berg's Pacifistic teachings. However, I did not single out anyone. It was not meant as an insult. I just see a Pacifists view of thinking as similar to berg's. Call it childish if you want. If I was reading my comments as a 3rd person I'd probably think so too. But if you'd read a little furthur up you'll see that I've been told I'm psycho, condoning murder and needing my way of thinking to be eliminated. I find my insinuation to be rather soft compared to those. And I also didn't single anyone out. Shaka, Sarafina and myself have been.

I enjoyed your last paragraph thoroughly. The ideals you spoke of do not get me uptight. It's believing that someday this world will realise it and change that gets me uptight. I also believe that there is some good in most people. But most is not enough to counter the evil out there. I do not agree with this evil but they don't give a fuck about my opinion. I believe that when one government leaves another takes it's place. I believe it's human nature to conquer for survival of one's best interest. That best interest may be ones child or it may be a whole country. I believe that evil reigns on this earth and one evil can conquer 2 good. I don't participate in this and I don't ignore it. I merely do my best for me and those I love to survive.(reply to this comment

From Vicky
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 23:25

(Agree/Disagree?)

Well I guess I look pretty stupid now, LOL - That's what I get for making an assumption on where you live! I do get where you're coming from, and in some ways it's probably a more accurate way of looking at the world. I have really said all I want to say on this subject so from now on I am happy to agree to disagree - Each one of us has our own reasons for feeling the way we do.(reply to this comment

From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 12:53

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Vicky,

I don't think anyone is contesting that we all 'can' take the moral high road, and that the world would be such a wonderful place if we all did.
The issue we're addressing is what the response should be when that moral code is broken. This is a very complex issue, and not one which can be addressed by a clear-cut 'right or wrong' attitude. There are so many factors involved - and IMO a very important one is the motivation for the specific actions.
Actions should also been viewed in the perspective of what they are in response to, or perhaps what they are intended to prevent.

I still think that what Private England, and the others did in that prison was wrong, but I think their actions should be contrasted against the absolute savagery that they were trying to prevent. As has been said before these were not just everyday Iraqis who happened to get on the wrong side of a soldier, they were militants who were likely planning vicious attacks against both the Allied soldiers and their fellow Iraqi citizens.

The trouble is, some people will never be happy - first they complain that the Americans didn't do enough to prevent attacks, and then they accuse them of being to harsh in trying to prevent them. You can't prevent suicide bombers by being nice to them - they quite literally have a death wish, and already have no regard for their own lives. When dealing with people like that you have to take extreme measures that would not otherwise be utilised - either that, or you just sit around and wait for them to detonate themselves, or some car in the middle of downtown Baghdad! Personally, I'd choose the first option.(reply to this comment
From Vicky
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 13:33

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I guess I have not been very clear in my comments on this issue. I tend to get carried away when discussing emotive subjects, and I realise it can get tedious for those of you who are perhaps more realistic than me to listen to my idealistic notions of honour and integrity...

To be honest, I'm running out of impetus on this issue now, so I'll keep this short and to the point: I never meant to give the impression that I can't take the reality of war. I know that the situation in Iraq is a hugely complex one and I do admire those who are fighting there, knowing that every day brings a risk of death. What I cannot agree with is the opinion that some people have voiced, that there should be no moral constraints on those who participate in military action. I just don't agree with it. I don't object if soldiers have to interrogate people or whatever, as that is obviously necessary sometimes. BUT... in my opinion those photos showed soldiers who were enjoying their sadistic actions and revelling in the degradation of fellow human beings, and that I cannot stomach. That's all I'm going to say on this subject.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 18:41

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I don't recall anyone mentioning there should be no moral constraints on those participating in war. I said that we shouldn't judge those in war before trying to understand all the shit they have to go through. Have you ever been in a fight where you and your friends were getting taunted by an ass and when you won you mocked that ass? When I saw those pictures I did not like or agree with what I saw. But I did understand. Just imagine being within eyesight of the battle, your enemy out there daring you to a fight. Your comrades falling all around you. Picking up their body parts. And through all this trying to remember your duty as a "white knight". When you capture that enemy do you believe you'd be able to treat him decently? I know I would've hit him a few times and tortured him till I got all the information I needed to save my comrades and end the war. Sexually humilating them may have been one of the only options to getting information because of their religious beliefs. Remember, these men are fighting till the death and ready to die for their beliefs. As immoral as some of the american soldiers may have been; making them the spotlite of evil only makes the world forget the evils that occurred in Iraq before America got there. (reply to this comment

From lucidchick
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 08:55

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It is possible to not be a pacifist and to not believe in turning the other cheek in all cases, while still thinking that power should be brought to bear in a considered and accurate manner. Appropriate and intelligent choice of targets followed through with disciplined aim.

Even for a hawk there is the issue of pragmatism. Are we really trying to prevent more nine-elevens? Then let's choose actions calculated to actually have that effect, even if we are forced to work hard to devise complex and costly solutions. The reluctance to take a troublesome route now, laziness and willy-nilly use of yesterday's methods for today's problem will all be much more costly in the long run.


(reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 08:21

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Why is it when someone has an opinion different from yours they are still brainwashed by Berg? Who here is advocating turning the other cheek? Which of our cheeks did Iraq strike in the first place? I'm just wondering so when I do go back under the influence of Berg's BS, I know which cheek to turn!(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 18:47

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Why is it that you think I'm someone else? I never before this one time insinuated that someone was brainwashed by berg because their opinion differed from mine. I did accuse someone of it when they defended pedophilic ways. I consider this to be different though.

Iraq is an Islamic nation and the Islamic nation is very powerful. A part of this nation did 9/11. Iraq was just one part of the puzzle. (reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 06:51

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I beg to differ! Iraq was a secular nation, Afghanistan was an Islamic State (I believe that's the term your looking for). The Nation of Islam is comprised of Black Americans who have converted to a their own form of Islam that differs greatly from the middle eastern form.

Now that the balance of power in Iraq has been upset, elections will be held and the majority of the country who are Shiite muslims, will vote for a religious leader and we will then have another Iran on our hands. Sadaam, for all his atrocities, kept Iraq a secular nation, despite the will of the majority.

One more thing, a "nation" didn't attack us. Saudi terrorists attacked us with funds from Al Queida, an international underground terrorist network. Bin laden runs Al Queida, who incidentally, has made no bones about his beef with Sadaam for running a secular, non-Islamic state. We attacked Afghanistan for HARBORING terrorists, not for directly attacking us.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 17, 2004, 18:39

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Yeah, that is what I was shootin for. I have my own little theory of another reason Bush felt invading Iraq immediately was necessary. We all know there were no Nuclear Weapons, the basis of sending American troops in. I think he was afraid of an Arab threat. Even though under Saddam Iraq was a secular nation, the people were Islamic. I don't know what they're called in the middle east so I'll just call them Islamic. If these Islamic's, all from different countries, got pissed enough at America they could easily find a reason to unite and put aside their differences to fight against America. Afghanistan had the strongest threat and possibly the next was Iraq. After this who knows where Bush will invade. (reply to this comment

From Vicky
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:35

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

You're right, Sarafina. I realise my first statement above was misleading - I actually wasn't referring to Joe's main point as to your comment, more a general agreement with the general feeling of nausea... I didn't mean to be offensive.

I think probably the reason why people are reacting more strongly towards your comment is that you are a woman. It is actually quite sexist, but I suppose most people expect women to be more 'gentle and loving' in their thinking, because of our social conditioning as more touchy-feely creatures. Of course, it isn't right to make sweeping assumptions based on gender alone, so we should not react more strongly to you just because of that factor.

Again, while I don't agree with you, I am sure you have your own reasons for feeling that way.(reply to this comment

From sarafina
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:46

(Agree/Disagree?)

Thank you Vicky,

I respect your comment greatly as do I of those with other points of views. I can see and agree with a lot of points being made on both sides really and I'm sure they have their reasons also. I really do hate discussing politics and war as I'm very bad at presenting things in a "politically correct" manner nor as eloquently as you or Jules may. Which Is why I usually avoid the subject altogether which I will continue doing from now.=) (reply to this comment

From sarafina
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:47

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Joe, I almost don't know a person here at work or that I've talked with including many of my military friends that didn't agree with me including my boss and co workers. Had I realized people on here would react this way I may not have posted my opinion (as I would never intentionally want to offend anyone.) Vote it to the trash if you want but you probably should just stay off and out the subject of war altogether though cause we have discussed war before and politics and basically any opinion of anyone that is for this war and disagrees with you on it makes you sick so we might as well though the whole article in TT so as not to offend you right? I knew you were going to have something to say but is that the best you can do?trying to trying to compare me with JF that was low even for you.

I will give you this, I will no longer post my opinions on politics as I can see it is a waste of time and to be honest some of these comments were equally offensive to me in the opposite way.So please stop with the mellow dramatics already.(reply to this comment

From Haunted
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:28

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It's difficult to write this because you know I respect you and admire your opinions and love you to the ends of the earth, but I have to disagree. Maybe I'm just a big old softie, but here's how I see it: as much as I would love to get a certain uncle in a room full of his peers, strip him naked and beat him bloody, I know I would be guilty of the same crimes he committed against me. Sure, I'd absolutely love to do it - it would probably be justified too, hell, I KNOW it would be - but I'm a better person than him. I'd gladly take him to court and testify against him if I could see him pay in some way, shape or form along with all the other horrible people in my life who I can't even mention here. I don't feel that this attitude is pampering him, I just think it makes me the bigger person. Anyways, thats my opinion, although this just seems to be one of those things that you feels strongly about one way or the other and I think everyone feels very justified in their opinions about these issues so it's kinda hard to discuss. Oh well.....(reply to this comment
From sarafina
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 09:21

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Well even though we disagree I still love and repect you very much also. See darling thats why I have friends like you around to keep me balanced. Cause if you wern't in the room with me and that certain Uncle he might just fall to some unfortunate accident. When it comes to abusing and mistreating my family I'll forget about trying to be a bigger person and will just be a person.(reply to this comment
From neez
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:32

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..sniff. God bless america..(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 14:14

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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Well if it's "an eye for an eye..." christian retoric you're promoting than a whole lot more Americans need to die and suffer in the way they've made millions- that includes the harm sanctions has caused, not alowing medicine etc..before they're anywhere even with the U.S. (reply to this comment
From Vicky
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 03:49

(Agree/Disagree?)

Not that this actually matters, but if I'm not mistaken "an eye for an eye" is not Christian rhetoric, but an old-testament thing. It doesn't really gel with 'turn the other cheek' does it...? Sounds to me like an ancient Hebrew brand of justice.

Maybe someone who actually remembers all those Bible lessons could enlighten us?(reply to this comment

From Ne Oublie
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 05:15

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Yes, 'eye for an eye' is an Old Testament guideline, and was specifically mentioned by Jesus as something superceded by His message of 'forgiving your enemies' for Christians. Therefore, it would probably be more accurate to call it Jewish rhetoric - it is also very similar to the Islamic code of justice, which also denotes a specific consequence for each crime committed.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 18:19

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
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If it's Christian rhetoric you like then why are you hiding under a bushel? (reply to this comment
From sarafina
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:17

(Agree/Disagree?)
I am not a christain neither do I have time to argue I'm simply posting my opinion and leave you with to yours.(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 14:13

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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Well if it's "an eye for an eye..." christian retoric you're promoting than a whole lot more Americans need to die and suffer in the way they've made millions- that includes the harm sanctions has caused, not alowing medicine etc.. (reply to this comment
from I can't believe you'd say that
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 11:48

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

We're talking about human decency and dignity here. Do you know what really happened? There is a lot more to it than the pictures, and according to Rumsfeld there are worse pictures that have not been made public. A human should NEVER treat another human that way! A human should NEVER treat an animal that way! Basic human rights should NEVER be violated. The perpetrators stooped to the moral level of Sadam Hussein and the people who committed the atrocities in Fallujah.
(reply to this comment)

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 18:24

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Do you really expect human decency during war? Whats right is one thing, what to expect is another. I may not like what they did but I don't blame them. Whats (reply to this comment
From neez
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:23

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It's amazing some ppl actually have to be told this kinda stuff. & It's pretty pathetic seeing someone trying to defend these morons.

Perhaps you might try watching international(non-american) news once in awhile. You might be surprised what the rest of the world thinks about it.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 01:01

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Somewhere in America:

A man is walking on the highway, there's a major traffic jam, bumper to bumper, nothing moving, when suddenly a man is tapping his window. He rolls the window down and asks " What's up? Can I help you?" The other guy answers "President Bush has been kidnapped by fanatic muslims! They demand ten million dollars, or they'll douse him with gas and set him on fire. So we're kinda passing the bucket and collecting." "Well, I'll be glad to help. How much are people giving?" "About a gallon each."(reply to this comment

From I'll donate 2 gallons...
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:06

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Agree/Disagree?)
So... if the man is walking on the highway, what window is the collector tapping on? Was the man carrying a car door? :P(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 21:23

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Agree/Disagree?)

If you didn't get the joke don't spoil it for everyone else. If you still must have it explained then go ahead and be a pain. :)(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:01

(Agree/Disagree?)
I watch Canadian and British news regularly, thank you. Sorry but I don't get Al Jezzeera or however the fuck you spell it. (reply to this comment
from highonhigh
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 10:49

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Why do you think the poor american soldier are commiting suicide. They are going nuts with the madness. I think the situation with all this horrible photos is just a tip of the iceberg. This is the way I see if I am an Iraqi & american soldiers come to my land to take away what is rightfuly my & they kill my family & my love ones I should just sit back & do nothing? THEY HAVE TO FIGHT BACK. They did not go to war to liberate the "opressed" anyone with even a small brain knows that their motives was oil, oil & more oil. What are the excuses the americans are going to give in order to invade Venezuela? That we are a terrorist nation? Venezuela are for the most part educated, smart & they will fight till death, they will not surrender to anyone. When you walk the streets of some of the Venezuela cities & you see graffitis " fuera imperialismo americano" "Venezuela nacion soberana" "El Petroleo de Venezuela es de los Venezolanos" You can't help but join this growing force. Some of the countries like Venezuela & Brasil that are not in agreement with the TLC are being punished by the US. Why? because we are saying, we are fine with out american imports,we don't want to buy anything from the US. because we want to teach our people to buy what we produce, so our money stay in our country.And we get punished for that. That doesn't make sense. I am part of an organization that is educating the latin people to say no to the TLC & I am proud of it, that does not make me a terrorist only a patriot. There are thousands of students joining this force to defend our land from the "Invasores estranjeros" I am proud I am one of them.
(reply to this comment)
From Ruthie
Monday, May 10, 2004, 13:54

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What do you mean, the U.S. is punishing countries for not buying its exports? Can you be more specific? Thanks.(reply to this comment
From highonhigh
Monday, May 10, 2004, 22:54

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
With sanctions in the international trade. they did that to Brasil with the restriction on the steel trade to try to screw them. American government have three way of punishing when they get piss. economically (with sanction), politically (over throwing governments), & militarily (creating wars). Check the web & you find out. If you know spanish portuguese or french you get a lot of information on how the US screw third world countries when they don't kiss the US ass. Just like TF "we want to save you", "we are the answer", "in us there is true freedom", "we are it" sounds like the american government.if you don't kiss Kelly & Zerby's ass you also get punish . Now that I am grow up I understand why TF was born in the US & spread like a virus infecting every country they went. (reply to this comment
From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:30

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Unfortunately, Bush and some of his cronies sound exactly like TF, because Bush seems to have a missionary complex. I am highly bothered by his rehtoric and sense of "divine mission". I will vote against him in November.

I do think, however, that TF represents the worst of America. What country does not have an underbelly? I think every coin has two sides, even Aristotle said that every virtue has its opposite at the end of a continuum.

While America seems a breeding ground for TF and such, there are some Americans who are the antithesis of The Family and their type. Americans are only as worthy of stereotypes and prejudice as the next country.(reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:08

(Agree/Disagree?)

The steel sanctions were put in place to save our own collapsing steel industry. As with much of Bush's policy, it was of course , a failure and the sanctions are beggining to be lifted. The US, for all its faults, has one of the most open markets in the world. Our trade defecit is much much higher than almost any of the countries we do business with.

Then of course, there's China, who allowed an exotic insect pest, the Asian Longhorn Beetle, to infest our country through untreated wooden crates. As a result, millions and millions of acres of pine forest are dead and the resulting wild fires in the western half of our country have cost billions of dollars to our economy. So then, we ban any goods arriving in untreated wooden crates from China and China goes to the WTO claiming unfair trade practices.

Sorry, but somethimes you gotta call a spade a spade. (reply to this comment

From Ruthie
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 05:34

(Agree/Disagree?)
Umm, excuse me but what exactly do you think other countries are doing to the U.S.? You say that “countries like Venezuela & Brazil that are not in agreement with the TLC are being punished by the US. Why? Because we are saying, we are fine with out American imports; we don't want to buy anything from the U.S. because we want to teach our people to buy what we produce, so our money stays in our country.” Later, you say “With sanctions in the international trade. They did that to Brazil with the restriction on the steel trade to try to screw them.” So, it is ok for Venezuela and Brazil to not but imports from us but it is not ok for the U.S. to place restrictions on trade from those countries? You should reexamine your views because they are not consistent. Recently, the United States’ economy has been hurt by the move of factories to other countries (because of cheaper labor). I think that the U.S. has every right to regulate trade with other countries. We are dependent enough on other countries’ exports as it is. But, really, how does it make sense that the U.S. should not restrict trade with other countries that restrict trade with them? Just like Venezuela and Brazil encourage its own production, self-sufficiency and economy by not buying American imports, the U.S. certainly would wish to do the same. You are simply not being fair. But surely you can see how a country would wish to better its own economy by relying less on international exports (whether it be Brazil, the U.S., or Venezuela)?(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 01:11

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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"As you all know we're about to start March Madness. That's NCAA college basketball tournament when they start with 64 teams and you whittle them down to just one, you know kind of like our allies." —Jay Leno
(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 23:20

Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2 out of 5(
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Isn't it so great how many of these people from 3rd world countries hate America yet their own citizens immigrate to America. Those who hate America should be glad Russia, China, Islamics and South Americans aren't the worlds super power. Unless you're for one of them. (reply to this comment
from highonhigh
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 10:15

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Americans should not even be in Iraq. They went after the oil but is not working out & will not work out. America should stay away from other people lands. Venezuela treath to cut their oil suplies wich is 52% & send it to China insted. Things are changing & those opressed by the US will unite & defend what is theirs.
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from Vicky
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 09:48

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I think what has happened in Iraq is despicable and makes a mockery of any good intentions that some may have had in fighting the war over there - I remember reading a comment on this site last year (when the war first started), saying that this war would result in a more positive sentiment toward America in that part of the world. All I can say to that is, I didn't believe it then, and it certainly won't have that effect if this kind of shameful behaviour continues.

I do not accept the argument that anything should be allowed during war - That is a ridiculous approach to the issue. I think that it is possible to be honourable, dignified and maintain a certain degree of integrity even in the midst of war. War requires some callousness, I'm sure, but as much as possible I believe that soldiers should respect human life and allow these people the dignity of humane and civilised treatment. But perhaps that is too much to ask of soldiers, many of them young and impressionable, who are expected to kill on a daily basis. Perhaps the real issue is that war is ultimately inhumane and uncivilised, and in participating in the day-to-day reality of war some people must suspend their moral reasoning in order to take part.

I have always though it very naiive when people think that we, as humans, are truly any more 'civilised' in this day and age than we were hundreds or thousands of years ago. I don't know if I really believe that. Maybe we are when everything is hunky-dory and our lives are relatively good, but otherwise the track record has not been good - Certainly not in the last century with the World Wars and Vietnam as a few examples, and from what we've seen so far, things will be just as degenerate in this Millenium. Very, very sad!
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from cheeks
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 08:19

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It simply does not make it right. I am sorry our men and women are dying over there. However, it does not give us the right to abuse those in our care. America is supposed to be an example to the world and this is what we show them.


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From Haunted
Monday, May 10, 2004, 08:50

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I agree! If one professes to be a "white knight" and a "saviour" patently to "liberate" another from their current circumstances of abuse and torture, partaking in such abuse causes the aforementioned individual to cease to be what he professed and makes us (the USA), in effect, first-class hypocrites. (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 18:27

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It took you that long to realise they're hypocrites? It's about the oil not liberation. (reply to this comment
from Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 04:35

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I think we're missing the point here, Shaka! firstly, this was meant to be war of liberation; this despite the fact that everyone with a brain knows it was not. Whether or not Bush admits it to himself or anyone else, the Iraqis know what the Yanks are there for, and it ain't them; it's for the second largest oil reserves in the world. The Iraqis know they were not liberated out of the deeply seated altruism of the western powers.

Professional soldiers understand that there are regulations imposed upon their actions, and they operate accordingly. If any action could indeed be justified, these actions would occur in the field, under fire or in intense and stressful conditions; we do not see evidence of this here. These are not frontline troops under enormous stress; these are REMFs, these are troops who are entertaining themselves at the expense of those in their custody. There is an unwritten but widely accepted precedent among infantry and combat troops ( and, by that token, those who operate with them) that certain things will occur in the heat of battle; there is no certain way to avoid it. phosphorous grenades into bunkers, bayoneting the wounded, even trophy collecting all have precedents in behaviour of soldiers under fire. It's tacitly accepted as a functional part of war.

Regulations for dealing with newly captured prisoners of war are not friendly. We were taught to exploit the feeling of fear and isolation inherent in captives in order to control them. This is probably what most Iraqis will be referring to when they speak of abuse. But the photographs are not of newly captured prisoners. These are men already in detention, and processed. There is no purpose or function in this abuse other than the entertainment of the prison staff.

Furthermore, let's not overly iconise the soldierly creed. No soldier really goes into his chosen trade for the better interests of his country. We do for fun, adventure, to prove ourselves- but most people do it to get out of the situation they're in. Little miss Englund is, let's not beat around the bush, white trailer-trash from whatever shithole she escaped from (how dumb would you have to be to allow yourself to be photographed committing a crime of international proportions without being aware of the posible consequences?). She and her ilk are no better than 'Uncle Rashid' or whatever it was that you called them. The average soldier is barely literate, and if he/she constructs more than one or two formulated opinions in his/her life, it's an achievement. Why else would they do what they do without asking questions?

A comparative example of what might happen as a result of this is Northern Ireland. When the Brits first sent troops there, the Army thought that by intimidation and bullying they could subdue the population. Soldiers are meant to hate those they fight, I can accept that. But the end result is that a lot more soldiers died than were ever necessary.Bloody suday helped recruit mor men into the IRA than ever went in for any other reason. if America continues on this course, thinking that they have to reciprocate and avenge every action taken against them, they will be ther forevor. When Ghandi spoke of the Mosaic notion of justice leaving the whole world blind, he was referring to not only a philosophical but also tactical implication that we had to learn to accept in Ireland. Von Clauswitz spoke of this very factor when he said that the the deepest need of human beings is dignity. He meant that men will fight and die for their pride and their honor, and you can fight armies, you can even conquer ideals, but you will never destroy the human spirit without completely destroying the human. When I think that Gerry Addams and Martin McGuinness both have the blood of my former comrades on their hands, it makes me angry that these men are now afforded positions of status, yet recognising both these men has allowed the better fruition of the peace process.

Clausewitz also said that there is no truly feasible means of regulating a process of action that defies all regulation of human behaviour and is defined by the contravention of human restriction, but these actions were not the action of ruthless men in the pursuit of their soldierly duty. Thes were the actions of poorly disciplined, ill supervised mongs left to thier own devices. I dare not call them soldier by way of shame by association. They are not fit to bear that distinction.



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From Ruthie
Monday, May 10, 2004, 08:28

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

“No soldier really goes into his chosen trade for the better interests of his country. We do for fun, adventure, to prove ourselves- but most people do it to get out of the situation they're in.”

You should be more careful to avoid over-generalizing. I am sure that there are some soldiers who generally believed that they were going to join the armed serves to serve their country. One example was this man who joined to fight in the Iraqi war… He turned down a lucrative contract in the NFL to join the armed forces. I don’t think that he was trying to get out of the situation he was in. Also, are you forgetting that there was one soldier (I cannot remember his name) that actually alerted the press about what was going on because he was disgusted by it? Also, I’m curious… Why did you join?

“The average soldier is barely literate, and if he/she constructs more than one or two formulated opinions in his/her life, it's an achievement.”

I am assuming that you are the exception to this rule?

I do agree with most of what you say though… We were supposed to go to Iraq to “liberate” them but that seems like a cruel joke now. And it’s silly and cruel to say, “Well, Saddam was so much worse so they should still be thankful.” I would hope that most Americans (well, everyone) is just as disgusted as I am by these actions.

Oh, and one more reason why people may want to join the army: They are racist and want an excuse to legally shoot a person of color.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:49

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

RUthie, I am guessing that you are either a person of colour,or a liberal. No offense intended.

To answer your questions.

Most soldiers do assert that at some level they joined up for Queen and country; I did. The truth is that patriotism is mostly an abstract and intangible quality that only exists, in my opinion, as an idea or perhaps as a facade. Your NFL person may claim to want to serve his country, maybe he thinks he does- in reality he probably wants to do what we all really wanted to do -me included-, which is to 'get some'. i don't mean to discredit his sacrifice, regardless of his motivation he does serve his country.

I did not intend to discount the fact that many soldiers have clearly defined moral values, and I have met exceptional young men who were very intelligent- most of them left after a few years, as did I. The objective word was average- I salute with the highest honor those exceptional men who continue to serve and excel in the service of the armed forces, despite being of higher potential. But if you don't know what I mean when I refer to the average soldier then I invite you to come along with me to the next battalion reunion event; you WILL walk away knowing exactly what I mean. I generalise, and that does leave me open to criticism, but I spent enough time around these men to permit myself a couple of liberties. Soldiers are at an advantage if they do not formulate opinions, because then they need not ask questions. Military life is fraught from dawn till dusk in absurdity. Try it some time if you don't know what I mean.

As for me, it was the easiest thing to do at the time when I left; maybe I also had a romantic notion of adventure and excitement.

Finally, everyone is racist. Anyone who claims not to be is either a delusional or conscious liar; or perhaps they've never had to deal with racism. Being a racist does not make you a disfunctional human being. It's only when the racism begins to dominate you behaviour and your actions, or you become comfortable with it.

I'll let you decide whether or not I am an exception to this rule.




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From Ruthie
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 06:03

(Agree/Disagree?)
Liberal: 88%. Person “of color”: only 50% (½ Hispanic, ½ Caucasian). No offense taken.

My entire point was that not all men/women joined the army for those reasons before. I do now a few (4 to be exact) that joined the military because they wanted to serve their country. So I suppose I have had a different experience with military persons (or have had less exposure to them). Or perhaps I am just simply naïve. Anyway, you should realize that, as an “eighty-eight-percent-liberal,” I do not like generalizations and stereotypes although I recognize that they are a natural thing to do. That is why I react the way I do- I’ll try not to be so politically correct next time.

“Everyone is racist.” Ok, I’ll agree with you partially. It depends on how you use the word racist. Many sociologists argue that the social context is: racism = prejudice + power. Thus, Blacks and Native Americans cannot usually be racist be they have (historically) lacked power. Used the other way, I am not sure how many people honestly truly believe that one race is superior to another. Of course, if we are discussing prejudices, then, yes, virtually everyone has some racial prejudice. Especially here in the U.S. Most people here in Miami keep that to themselves. Anyway, I do think that there were some people in the military that are genuinely racist and ethnocentric, which makes the Iraqi problem 100 times worse. I know that some Americans (as well as Iraqis) have trouble relating to other cultures, making them hate each other more and more.
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From Baxter
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 13:53

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I know that most of the military is ethnocentric and/or racist, my dear! I have in my life been beaten up, set on fire, had my kit trashed before inspection, blamed for other people's mistakes, humiliated by senior NCOs on company and battalion parades, and a lot of shit I didn't really care for.

Generalisations can be offensive to people, yet that does not negate them entirely. I spent most of my time in the forces having to deal with people whose entire intellectual capacity was dedicated to football, beer and pussy! Having to stay up all night in some crow's room to keep some senior G-man bully from kicking the shit out of him, among other things, depleted whatever particularly high-minded, romantic notions of the proud brotherhood of soldiery. All you people out there who now serve or who have served, if you get past the inparted loyalty you inevitably feel towards your comrades, you'll admit you know what I'm talking about.

I in no way wish to degrade the inherent sacrifice of every soldier, regardless of his personal motivation. I still feel an enormous ammouat of loyalty to my former brothers in arms. But that does not leave me feeling any more empathetic to the bullshit that comes with the territory.

So what!


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From Shaka
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:06

(Agree/Disagree?)
Baxter, her NFL person as you call him was Pat Tillman. He played for the Arizona Cardinals and was a rising superstar until after September 11th, when he turned down a 3 million dollar a year contract to join the Army. He was killed in Afganistan a few weeks ago. (reply to this comment
From Baxter
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:23

(Agree/Disagree?)

Without wishing to sound callous in regards to the gravity of his sacrifice, I hope he got some in the process!

Nobody does what he did for their country. He sacrificed his life in the service of his country, and for that he dies a hero, but he fought for himself, like everyone else, and for that he dies a man.

I salute the fallen


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From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 01:42

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Sorry to hear about your friend. I guess it kind of explains why you are so angry with the situation in Iraq. (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:17

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One other thing, he died in Afghanistan not Iraq.(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 09:54

(Agree/Disagree?)
My friend? I wish!(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 01:49

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hmmm...Pat Tillman is a Ranger and used to play strong safety for the Arizona Cardinals(NFL). Not Shaka's friend. (reply to this comment
From moon beam
Monday, May 10, 2004, 13:10

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The men in WW1/2 were mainly men "from civi street who rallied round to defend their woman and children and human rights, even those too old were part of the home guard. It appears the army today is made up off people who want to join as an occupation: not out of obligation or out of a false belief, so maybe not surprising they "let rip", (I'd like to use another word) it's what they joined for. Lynndie summed it up by saying "I can't wait to get my revenge on them terrorists." (??? They havent been told obviously why they are there?) While the U.S administration keep their "Flock" in constant fear and ignorance {as we were} they are free to continue. But as we know people wake up, and the sooner the better as we are creating a rod for our own backs, and helping Jews and Christians get their long awaited for armageddon-they need an enemy after all! The richest country, through greed are aggressor's and the oppressed won't take it for long. When they achieve a successful revolution the cycle of biggest boy on the block will continue. No empire lasts forever as history indicates. Its interresting that the generation who were pre-haps more willing, (and have proved it by joining cults), to live more simply have been trapped in cults not voting, you can't send your boys to war when the people say "no". The vast difference between rich and poor has to diminish. We evolved to have choice which animals don't have but we are one of the only species who kill our own; still! I for one don't want to be compared to a black widow!!

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From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 11:03

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Analysing personal reason of people in a way is a bit like an outsider trying to understand a cult. I don’t think anyone fully understand unless they’ve been through it themselves. (reply to this comment
From auslander
Monday, May 10, 2004, 12:29

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I agree that until you have "been there," it is difficult if not impossible to understand what being a soldier in Iraq is like. And it is a bit like people trying to understand the dynamics in a cult.

But that does not mean we can excuse them for illegal and immoral acts. Personal responsibility and accountability is a foundation of our society.

I don't have to have been in the military to know that what is going on in Iraq is illegal and immoral.

How many people here are willing to excuse all the FGAs who abused them because of their defence, "Oh, you just don't know what it was like -- all that pressure to conform from Zerby and Berg. That was the culture of the group." That kind of defence is just not good enough.

Let's face it, if the FGAs had been held accountable for their actions, if they had taken personal responsibility for what they did, much of the abuse may never have happened.

In a democracy, the military is subject to the civil government. They are sworn to defend the Constitution, not break it.

I think the real heroes in all of this are the whistleblowers, the soldiers who reported the abuse and leaked the photos to the press. They knew it was wrong and did something about it. Rumsfeld and co sure as hell would never have let all this go public.

So, we can't understand what its like to be a soldier in Iraq. But we can, and we have the obligation to do so, sit in judgement of them if they commit criminal acts. They are not above the law. They are accountable for what they do.

God help us if they aren't. (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:48

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
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You say the American soldiers are like the FGA's. I say the Iraqis are like the FGA's. Those of us who did do things we're not to proud of while in TF are like the American soldiers. That's the way I see it.(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 13:34

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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Sorry was referring to Vicky’s comment not Shaka's disregard of human dignity. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:10

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Dignity? A terrorist with dignity? Since when?(reply to this comment
From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 00:03

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So you are now able to judge if a person is a terrorist or not. People are supposed to be innocent until proved otherwise.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 00:57

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It be best if they should just stayed anonymous.(reply to this comment
From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 01:30

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I have friends who are in Iraq. The last thing any soldier wants to hear is that the people back home that have so called been fighting for, see the War as pointless and stupid. (reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 18:57

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What comment are you replying 2? I was joking about how you keep posting anonymously and you replied with how the American soldiers would be offended. Even if you didn't get my sarcasm your reply is irrelevant.(reply to this comment
From Haunted
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 09:15

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I also have friends and family in and headed to Iraq, and most of them understand that it is their job. It's what they signed up for no matter if they agree with it or not, in fact, some disagree and see it as pointless and stupid as well.

My father and many of his friends served in the military during the Vietnam War, and believe me, he would be the first to tell you how pointless and stupid war is.

And really, lat's face it here - they may be fighting for you, but they most certainly ARE NOT fighting for me. They are not fighting for anything I believe in or want or think is best for this country (I'm speaking here of the Iraqi conflict, NOT the troups in Afghanistan), I've opposed the war since its inception and will continue to do so until all of our friends, brothers, sisters, fathers and mothers are back where they belong, not fighting for someone else's greed, ignorance and hate. (reply to this comment

From moon beam
Monday, May 10, 2004, 13:15

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I agree, also if Milosevic can be taken to the hague for war crimes he ordered but didn't personally commit, than so can Bush and Blair.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 18:36

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I find that abit extreme. As much as I don't like Bush he hasn't done or allowed what Milosevic did, same for Blair.(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 07:57

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Eligibility is there in mine and many peoples opinion, sentence may be less severe, granted! (Maybe just a fine). Who knows how knowledgeable or ignorant(very-in one sense- G.B) they were at the time or are now or what we will find out in the future. Is that an acceptable excuse tho? I wouldn't except it from the cult. The law does state "IGNORANCE IS NO DEFENSE"(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 21:47

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Milosevic wanted to exterminate a race and proceeded with his own methods regardless of international law. I forget the exact word for that. Bush on the other hand is trying to crush a government. It can be in the name of human rights or oil. Take your pick. As far as we know, he hasn't given any commands to abuse the prisoners. It would be premature to say he should be tried for war crimes. Fired from office, be my guest to shout it. (reply to this comment
From moon beam
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 10:23

(Agree/Disagree?)
LOL cheers!! FIRE BUSH!(reply to this comment
From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:57

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
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I don't disagree with most of what you said, but "ignorance is no defense" refers to ignorance of what the law prohibits.

So it would apply if somebody said they didn't know the law prohibited brutalizing prisoners, *not* that you can be held responsible accross the board for things somebody was doing whether or not you knew they were being done, otherwise john doe could be sent to jail because jane doe robbed me and when john defends himself "I didn't know she was robbing you" the prosecution could say "ignorance is no defense."

Of course, if you have certain positions of responsibility you are charged with being answerable to a larger degree than otherwise (though there is a difference between doing and failing to make sure it's not being done).

The situation of the leaders you refer to is, if I am not mistaken, *not* that they were ignorant of the law, but that they were supposedly ignorant of what others were doing under their watch. (reply to this comment

From moon beam
Monday, May 17, 2004, 08:10

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If a construction company builds a bulding/bridge which collapses and the managers say they did not oversee the project, they, under ICC law are criminally negligent. Blair's a paid member whereas Bush refused to sign up, along with other such agreements like kyoto.(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 17, 2004, 09:17

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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The managers in that example are "wilfully' ignorant. Wilful ignorance, you are correct, is not an excuse. Moreover, for the managers in that example, overseeing the project is in their job description and they get paid to do it, so by they can't get off the hook by claiming ignorance.

Kind of reminds me of TF, which sets up Teen Homes and Victor Camps and writes GNs which people have to obey in order to remain members, and the they try to claim ignorance, when in fact they were taking it upon themselves to dictate how the children of members were being raised(reply to this comment

From moon beam
Monday, May 17, 2004, 12:09

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Exactly, reminded me of that too! Won't wash!!(reply to this comment
From nobody
Monday, May 10, 2004, 04:45

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I know this has nothing to do with the situation in Iraq, but it kind of notes the hypocritical nature of war.
http://www.monochrom.at/cracked/comments/warndrugs.htm(reply to this comment
from
Monday, May 10, 2004 - 01:37

(Agree/Disagree?)

It’s amazing how many young boys really want to go a fight in a war. Usually those who have no idea what it will do to them mentally. Nightmares and suicide rates with men who have been in hand to hand combat is extremely high. Over half of the men who survived the hand to hand combat in Falklands have committed suicide.

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From Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004, 03:51

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
But let's be fair. the other half fucking loved it! I aint never met a man who was in that war who doesn't admit to having got an enormous thrill out of killing their first man.
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From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 04:12

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What else are they going to say? When people start to come out with the Queen and country BS it’s usually because they need to justify things they done. Just look at how fucked up people who leave the military are. Most people that I know who have joined original reasons ranged from pissing off their parents, avoiding drugs, a love for technology or easy money. War is something that shouldn’t be wished on anyone and leaves deep psychological scars. I have met people who have a very sick fascination with killing or legalised murder, I think you’re right that these are the other half of the statistics.
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From Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004, 05:04

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I ay, get over any deluded notions of moral absolutism.
Killing, no matter what Grub Smith says, is natural to man. We were meant to exist in a state of continual conflict for our own survival. the only true injustice of war is that we are not fighting for ourselves, but for somebody else's best interests. We're all potential Psychopaths, but most of us just adhere to convention. It's in the eyes of men who have been beyond the threshold of consensus-regulated humanity that you begin to understand the true nature of humanity itself, wherein the very term 'humanity' is itself ppretentious. Man is a predatory animal, the sooner we accept that the better.(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 05:18

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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I completely agree with you, but when it’s over these same people are expected to return to being good little husbands and civilians. The person that I knew that had left been in NI as well, he had severe nightmares, panic attacks and a class A drug problem, which he was used to hiding. I don’t think that most people are mentally strong enough to deal with what the military expects them to. I do agree with you that human natural is fundamentally evil and cruel, but these people are expected to return to the so called norm without any side effects. (reply to this comment
From Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:14

(Agree/Disagree?)

Remember what happened to Paddy Mayne. I agree, I haven't met a fully functional soldier yet. I mean, the Army practically sparked my drug problem. And I ain't met one yet who was a good dad. Mind you, if you heard them talk about it they were the best dads in the world. I don't think the environment is conducive to normal social behaviour. Of course, Ruthie will point out my generalisations, but I am only relating my personal experience. To be honest, the best soldiers in the world are only that way because they've succesfully shut out most of the world, except those elements that appeal to them. (reply to this comment

From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 00:45

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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I do have some lecturers whom are ex military and they are very nice people.
To be far I think the person I knew would have been messed up regardless if he was in the military or not, but being in such a stressful environment did help to accelerate certain problems.
Since this war has started it’s interesting to see the reaction of people in the military. It’s also interesting to hear kids like Sharka who have no understanding of what is like to have someone they are close to killed in combat. Its such ‘gun hoe’ attitudes that create, over zealous fanatics that have been know to administer friendly fire.
Considering our background and the experiences the some of us have gone through with the police raiding F homes or public humiliation while in the cult, you would think some would be a little more aware of basic human rights. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 07:27

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I have many friends who are military or ex military, many who have lost friends in combat. Not one of them disagrees with my point of view. They are outraged that Americans are so outraged about the humiliation of a few criminals when good men are dying every day and nobody cares because of these fucking photos.

Speaking of the raids, I also know many people that were in them. Most of them think that, while the police used excessive force and frightened the children more than they should have, the reasons for raiding those homes were legitimate. The police were expecting a den of pedophiles and perverts so it was only natural that they were jumpy and high strung. In fact it was a nest of perverts but quite well disguised to the public eye.(reply to this comment

From
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 08:02

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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Maybe I’m a little touchy about the subject of the raids seeing as I was there, I don’t really want to go into it again as I posted something under ‘why I hate the police’. There was no need for half of the aggression that they showed. I completely agree with Baxter’s views on the military. Letting people in the military do what ever the hell they want just because they say that it’s for a good cause or in the name of revenge makes them hypocrites.
Hopefully this scenario will make people think twice before they do something so stupid and cruel, and let them know that they are still accountable for their personal actions.
I know it is a little normal for the young to love a bit of anarchy, but the rest of the world doesn’t really want to be controlled by a bunch of kids who many have a uniform and a gun.
(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 07:26

(Agree/Disagree?)

I have many friends who are military or ex military, many who have lost friends in combat. Not one of them disagrees with my point of view. They are outraged that Americans are so outraged about the humiliation of a few criminals when good men are dying every day and nobody cares because of these fucking photos.

Speaking of the raids, I also know many people that were in them. Most of them think that, while the police used excessive force and frightened the children more than they should have, the reasons for raiding those homes were legitimate. The police were expecting a den of pedophiles and perverts so it was only natural that they were jumpy and high strung. In fact it was a nest of perverts but quite well disguised to the public eye.(reply to this comment

From Shaka
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 07:42

(Agree/Disagree?)
Why does this damn thing keep posting twice?(reply to this comment
From
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 08:06

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Patience my lad, watch the little green lights. (reply to this comment
From auslander
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:55

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(
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yeah, I agree with you about the human rights point. I really value human rights and civil liberties because I lived in a cult that didn't.

Almost all the raids on F homes in the 90's were the result of authorities violating basic civil liberties -- illegal raids.

And I value people being accountable for what they do and taking responsibility for their actions, because I've seen the horror of what happens when you live in a society/cult where there is no accountability.

Bush and co. think they're accountable to no one and look at the mess. (reply to this comment

From ?
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 13:06

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Can you explain or define your opinion that the raids were illegal? and how they violated the rights of the children? Seeing as they were trying to help those kids. Are you saying policemen as well as soldiers need a chaperone ? (reply to this comment
From auslander
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 13:48

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Yes, most of the raids were proven to be illegal, and yes, in my view police do need watchdogs. Everyone in positions of power and authority need watchdogs, and they need to be held accountable. Another basic tenet of democracy.

(Of course the question has to be asked "Who will watch the watchers?")

Most of the raids -- Australia, Argentina, France, were illegal fishing expeditions. The authorities did not have firm hard evidence that crimes were being committed at the particular locations in question. They did have a lot of circumstantial evidence such as Family lit and anecdotal testimony from former members.

It was obviously so sensational they figured -- "Well, we'll do the raids, find the evidence, and then everything will be fine. We'll go fishing and see what we get."

(In democracies, citizens are supposed to be safe from unreasonable search and seizure. If the police want to raid your house, they need to appear before a member of the judiciary and show just cause why they need to raid. They need to have some sort of evidence. If they satisfy the judge, a search warrant is issued, but even that places restrictions on thet nature of the search. It's all about checks and balances.)

Trouble is, in the raids they did not find any evidence. So all of a sudden, the authorities are having to cover their butts and do everything they can to more or less fabricate evidence.

In Sydney, Australia, the case went on for 40 days or so before the government side collapsed. The resulting deal said that the state would be satisfied if the kids in question had government-paid "socialization" activities for a year -- arts and crafts. They even paid for taxis to pick up the kids.

In Melbourne, the case tool longer to come to court, but some sort of similar deal was struck out of court.

In one or both of those cities, Family members and the kids sued the authorities for wrongful arrest or whatever and won. They won big bucks.

In Argentina, same scenario but more violent, because it is a pretty fascist intolerant place (IMHO). They did the raids, no evidence of abuse, after three months of confinement all Family members and kids released on the orders of an Appeals Court.

France, I'm not so sure of the details, but almost all of the F members and kids were released for lack of evidence. One TSer was convicted of abusing his daughter I think, and is doing a lot of time.I'm not sure if that was a direct result of the raids.

So yes, the raids were proven to be illegal.

I'm not saying that none of the then children in the raids had suffered abuse. I am saying that in spite of the best efforts of desperate authorities who wanted any scrap of evidence, no evidence of abuse was discovered. Big difference. We all know the extent to which TF promoted the abuse of children, and how much took place.

There are probably people here who were taken in those raids and know more about it than I do. It would be interesting to hear their view on the morality and validity of the raids. (reply to this comment

From neez
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 21:41

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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Actually the kids in Aus definately didn't get big bucks. Their lawyers who were on a fishing trip(big fat golden fish) of their own took care of that. They individually recieved about the equivalent of a few months of workers/injury compenstaion.

The only ppl that really profitted where the TV solicitors & book writing religious types that flock to such occasions.(reply to this comment

From Jules
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:43

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I disagree with you pretty strongly on this. Considering that the adults in these homes were arrested, warrants had been issued. The police didn't just wake up one morning and decide to go pick on some poor innocent cult. That "circumstantial" literature was horrific. Illustrations of women nailed to beds and little girls being molested by Berg and Zerby? Videos showing stripteases by girls as young as four? Photographs of toddlers being sexually aroused by their nannies? "Testimonies" from parents on how their children are learning to have sex with each other? It goes on and on and on. If anything, it was grossly negligent of the various governments where the Family lived not to have taken any action before.

Considering the Family always just disappeared without a trace in the middle of the night after friendly visits from social workers or police, what else were they supposed to do? Don't you think that if the former members had been able to leave with the "evidence" fresh on their bodies they would have? Then the evidence wouldn't have had to be "anecdotal". Remember the packages that were put out by unscrupulous liars in the Family regarding the people that did have the guts to want to do something about the children they left behind? Those packages were what was anecdotal lies.

Haven't we covered this enough on here already? Everyone knows why no evidence was found. TF had been training their children for the past few years on how to lie to police, had been burning the evidence and successfully managed to get the victims to blame themselves for their own abuse. The Family members and WS people who stood up in court and lied for the Family committed perjury, knowing full well what they were doing. That's what was illegal.

I do not think that the raids were wrong. The manner in which they were carried out was wrong and overly traumatic to the children involved. However, if a secretive apocalyptic cult, already known for prostitution, is producing child pornography and touting the wonders of incest, what sort of reaction do you really expect from authorities? If the Family really cared so much about their children, they would have never engaged in these acts or published these documents to begin with. Those poor innocent parents paid their tithes to get Heaven’s Girl and the Davidito Book. This is off topic, so if you want to continue this discussion we should move it to a separate article. I personally am getting very tired of seeing the people who had the guts to stand up and do something about the abuse in the Family, long before anyone else had “paved the way”, being continually faced with tired arguments taken straight from the group’s own media training. (reply to this comment

From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 16:25

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Agree/Disagree?)
(They were legal, but it was still an unpleasant thing to go through.)
I don’t know how happy Shaka would be to be awaiting trial for a hypothetical misdemeanour, with some of his so called heroes in charge of his care. Has anyone seen the news today about the military being called in to try to gain control for ‘drug lords’ in some slums in Brazil. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 07:33

(Agree/Disagree?)
All prisoners in the the cell blocks where the abuse took place were the hardcore inmates such as high ranking Ba'ath loyalists and Al-Quada fighters. They were NOT being held for a misdemeanor. They were murderers.(reply to this comment
From Dani
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 08:17

(Agree/Disagree?)
I was talking about if you were hypotheiclly in some short of trouble, wrongly accused of course. (reply to this comment
From Shaka
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 20:45

(Agree/Disagree?)
Oh, is that you who keeps posting anonymously? (reply to this comment
From and
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:02

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Some of those "former members" were seeking loved ones, some minors, at a time when The Family had an iron grip on them and hid them from "10:36ers". Before there even was a Charter to revoke.

(reply to this comment

From auslaender
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 15:00

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Points well taken. I needed to hear that. I apologise for my perfunctory comments. (reply to this comment
From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:12

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JW are you asking anybody who has experienced raids while in The Family?(reply to this comment
From JohnnieWalker
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:31

(Agree/Disagree?)
The above comment is not mine.(reply to this comment
From JohnnieWalker
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:38

(Agree/Disagree?)
* make that BOTH of the above comments. Apparently, whoever is posting this is not German, else they would have spelled their pseudonym "Auslaender" or "Ausländer" ... or better yet: "Ein Ausländer", to make it clear that the name refers to a single person rather than a group.(reply to this comment
From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:58

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JW: apologies from the person who thought it was you. I guess there are other Germans or Germanophiles hanging here :-)(reply to this comment
From Auslaender
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:42

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Sorry about that, JW(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 04:19

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Should clarify- meant.
Just look at how fucked up MOST people who leave the military are.(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 02:06

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
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http://msnbc.msn.com/id/3956787/

http://www.vvaw.org/veteran/article/?id=239

http://www.cmaj.ca/news/25_03_02.shtml

(reply to this comment

from Shackled
Sunday, May 09, 2004 - 19:47

Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 1.5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Shaka, couldn't agree more with you. In my opinion, you can't put down laws and rules on how war should be fought. I'm not in the armed forces and never been to war. But I know that if I were there I wouldn't be to merciful to them prisoners; who, before being captured, would've slit my throat instantly. These people, like Dave, don't know what they're talkin about. They sit comfortably at home and watch the news and make decisions on others. If you aint actually there as a US soldier under constant attack for ur life, suicide bombings, lonliness, emotional pain and other things I can't think of, then you shouldn't judge them.

Dave, your letter sounded more like a weak attempt at making yourself known, with bad spelling. And in one of your comments you state that you meant no offense. WTF? You're either agreeing that the soldiers should be punished or you don't. You've probably got no experience stating an accusation or agreeing with one in public. Try doing this to someones face and not through the net then you'll see and feel the reaction.

People are so fickle. How can they forget about the 4 mutilated corpses so quickly. Try seeing that and similar things all fuckin day and then having to treat enemy prisoners with kindness. When a soldier agrees to kill his countries enemies they should be just as ready to die or tortured during interrogation and not expect a white flag to save their ass. If the Islamic nation wants to kill my ass for 500grams of gold then I don't think it matters how we treat them.

I'm not some sick fuck with no morals. I just think that when it comes to war, you can't place rules on it.

One last thing, Americas reputation is already fucked.



(reply to this comment)

From Haunted
Monday, May 10, 2004, 08:53

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

A tired old saying comes to mind: "Two wrongs don't make a right". (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 22:01

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That wise old saying is too old and should be put to rest. Generally speaking: you live by it now you'll get no where. Possibly could be why you're "Haunted". (reply to this comment

From Haunted
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 08:32

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

No, the reasons I am "Haunted" are far too complex to be delegated to a simple saying or quote. Perhaps they may even be similar to the reasons you find yourself "Shackled", unless of course, you just have a kinky mind ;-)

And seriously, I'll live by whatever sayings I want, thank you and I've gone rather far - cheers.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 21:38

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It was rude of me to bring your name into it and I apologize for that. I did have a feeling you'd bring my name up, and I think we both chose these names from similar reasons. (reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Monday, May 10, 2004, 06:00

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
The US, by its chosen position as the great moral example for the world, is automatically held to higher standards. There are rules to combat and there are rules on how to treat enemy prisoners. How do you think the Iraqis are going to treat our next POW's after this debacle? For all you "rah rah" testosterone driven little boys who wanna play soldier, grow up, next time it might be you tied to a dog leash being drug around naked by some bored Iraqi woman!(reply to this comment
From Shaka
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 07:36

(Agree/Disagree?)

Hell yeah! Only if she's hot though.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 19:09

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Net messed up and my reply got posted 3 times before I could finish writing it. The thing that pisses me off the most about your "testosterone driven little boys" comment is this. I liken that attitude and way of thinking to our Shepherds and parents in TF that stopped us boys from being boys. Boys are not supposed to sit quietly. Men are not supposed to be tamed lions. (reply to this comment

From neez
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 22:10

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Tamed lions.. lol r u still watching CNN?(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 22:15

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Tamed lions is a term too unfamiliar to you to mock with credibility. When did I start watching CNN? (reply to this comment
From frmrjoyish
Monday, May 10, 2004, 20:09

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

There's a saying that no one hates war worse than a soldier. I'm not sure who said that but I think thats the attitude that people should have when they choose to go to war. War is serious business, people die, get maimed and disfigured. It should be looked at with the ultimate respect and even a certain amount of trepedation. This zealous desire to rush into war without any concern for the innocent people on the other side shows an immaturity that makes for a poor undisciplined soldier.

That prevelant attitude of some on this site makes wonder if they've really thought seriously about the consequences. War is not a game or a coming of age ritual for little boys to prove their manhoods. A man is supposed to be mature, thoughtful, and honorable not some raging lion rushing into battle. That scenario is fine for the movies but makes for more bodybags in real life.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Friday, May 14, 2004, 15:02

(Agree/Disagree?)

I know several veterans who would dispute that assertion.

Some people join the forces and want to go to war simply because they need to prove to themselves that they're alive, and they do it by finding the most life threatening situation they can. I can give you a couple of book on the subject; most aren't, in fact, written by soldiers, but by war correspondents and others.

As for the nature of men, I must remind you that men have been fighting wars, raping, pillaging and commiting genocide for the entire duration of recorded history. Many cultures as you must know associate both honour and manliness with war; whatever contemperary reasoning you try to impose on human nature, it will remain the same.



(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Friday, May 14, 2004, 14:58

(Agree/Disagree?)

I know several veterans who would dispute that assertion.

Some people join the forces and want to go to war simply because they need to prove to themselves that they're alive, and they do it by finding the most life threatening situation they can. I can give you a couple of book on the subject; most aren't, in fact, written by soldiers, but by war correspondents and others.

As for the nature of men, I must remind you that men have been fighting wars, raping, pillaging and commiting genocide for the entire duration of recorded history. Many cultures as you must know associate both honour and manliness with war; whatever contemperary reasoning you try to impose on human nature, it will remain the same.



(reply to this comment

From Dani
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 00:53

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Strangely, I completely agree with you. (reply to this comment
From moon beam
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 07:41

(Agree/Disagree?)
As do I.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:24

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You misunderstood what I was saying about men not supposed to be tamed lions. A tamed lion lives in fear and control of his master. If a man is like this he ends up becoming a "nice guy".

I haven't seen this attitude of recklessness that you speak of. I've read some comments that talked about guys like this, but that's it. The first reason I'd never join the military is because I won't fight in a war that I don't believe is for pure liberation and the good of man kind. These kind of battles no longer exist. At the same time I'm not judging the soldiers out there. If they feel they're doing their duty to their country then I respect them for that. I just don't feel the same way about the reason for these wars. I'm not a coherrant writer so bear with me. I also don't blame them for the mistakes they make during war. Why should enemy soldiers be treated as guests because they surrender? As soon as they get out you know they'll be doing their best to kill you. It's this whole be righteous attitude that fucks up war. These wars aren't righteous so you can't fight them that way. (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 18:42

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You asked: "How do you think the Iraqis are going to treat our next POW's after this debacle?" Just like they did before this debacle. It's a mans (reply to this comment

From auslander
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 20:43

Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 2.5 out of 5(
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So, you think that only military personnel has the right the "judge" what is right and wrong in Iraq, and that we should throw international law out the window, and fuck everyone who disagrees with you cause if they were there in fron of you, they would "feel" your reaction.

We do judge the military and what they do, because the law judges them. Rule of law, dude. Think about it. Try and wrap your head around the concept. We're all accountable. It's not "might makes right." That's what makes us different from animals in the jungle.

But from the way you talk, you'd be quite at home there.

Your grammar sucks too: "Them prisoners?" (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 21:55

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
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I wasn't trying to have good grammar or spelling. But if you want to be a pain then how about your grammar. You wrote:"So, you think that only military personnel has the right the "judge" what is right and wrong in Iraq". Your "has" and "the" should be have and the.

Yes I do think that only those who have experienced war know what it's like. Like I said, 'I just think that when it comes to war, you can't place rules on it.' I'm not saying throw international law out the window. Where did you think I said that? However, I do believe international law sucks and is not in the best interest of soldiers. But if you believe that governments and law makers are honest men doing their best for mankind then that's the main reason we disagree. It's all about the benjamins! The British soldiers in Ireland are not allowed to fire until fired upon. Would you agree with that? I certainly don't.

I never said we shouldn't be accountable for our actions. I said there shouldn't be rules when it comes to how you treat your enemies soldiers. It's hard to fathom that you don't mind our enemies killing us, mutilating our bodies and putting rewards up for our death. That way of thinking reminds me of the forgive and forget concept that I've seen used far to often.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004, 04:53

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Those rules go somewhat further than that; If a man points a firearm at you or someone else in NI, then you can shoot him without warning; but if he does it and runs, it's a grey area. Technically, he's no longer a threat, and then you have to detain him. If he jumps in a car, you can't shoot him. If someone rams one of your mates on patrol with a car you can shoot him before he hits him, not before.

Having been a soldier in NI, I do agree with the restrictions and here's why. If we had the right to shoot without provocation, there would be wholesale massacre in the streets, I don't deny it. Every soldier on patrol knows the names, faces and addresses of almost every player in their TAOR. We knew which ones had killed soldiers, we know which ones killed civilians. I spent a good portion of six months watching the house of the IRA operative who masterminded the Docklands bombing. If we wanted to, they'd all be dead.We could kill them all in a week. But that would solve fuck all, we'd just turn Ireland into the West Bank.

If you think I'm detached from reality then you try having a brick thrown in you face, and then having to fight the urge to butt-stroke the bastard into infinity, but knowing that doing so would create even bigger problems fo you. Dealing on a regular basis with people you know would kill you just as soon as look at you if given the opportunity, would precipatiate a free-for-all, if the yellow card was revoked, and the green light given to shoot on sight. Then we'll be picking up the pieces for eternity. We might as well just go and shoot the next generation now before they have the chance to grow up and get revenge. (reply to this comment
From auslander
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:56

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Baxter, I think your input on this subject is great -- very helpful.

I especially like your point about the next generation. That's what much of this is all about, breaking the cycles of violence.

We see this in the occupied territories -- both sides have seen generations of boys growing up to be men and perpetrating the horrors there.

It's so important to take the long view.

25 years ago, when the Soviets invaded Afganistan and the CIA started arming and training mujahadeen, which CIA operatives there would have guessed that those young men would be leading devastating attacks against the US?

If the US does not turn things around in Iraq, they will irrevocably alienate a whole generation of Iraqi youth -- the leaders, or terrorists -- of tomorrow. (reply to this comment

From auslander
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 23:42

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"you can't place rules on war." For a long time people felt that there should not be rules on war. That led to poison gas being used in WW 1, and the atomic bomb being used in WW 2. So I guess that's all ok with you, right?

So if we follow that reasoning, people like Osama declare war on the US and American infidels and fly airplanes into buildings. That's ok too, because after all, there are no rules when it comes to war.

The history of international relations over the past several decades has been largely defined by nations trying to find alternatives to war to settle disputes. We have the U.N., treaties, NATO, Geneva Convention and the like, everything possible to minimise the temptation to resort to war. It's not a great system, but as we're seeing yet again, it beats war.

I'm not a great fan of governments, especially the American one, but they sure beat the alternatives.

I don't like "our" enemies killing us, but we have to continually ask ourselves, "What the hell are the Americans doing there?" It's not their country. Iraq posed no threat to anyone. There were no weapons of mass destruction. Even Iraq's neighbours were not complaining. There was no threat to America.

Why are the troops in Iraq? Why the sudden obsession with getting rid of Sadam? He'd been around for years and the U.S. supported him in the 1980's war with Iran. Ever see the photo of Rumsfeld schmoozing with him then?

Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz and co. don't give a shit about democracy in the U.S. Both they and the Israelis want an American client state there. If Iraq had fair and open elections they'd probably elect a Shiite government that would become Islamic, similar to Iran. No, democracy just won't do.

But the point is, the troops shouldn't be in Iraq. That's the crux of the problem. And now the Iraqis are getting increasingly pissed off because they view the Americans as occupiers, not liberators. Can you blame them? The people the Americans went to liberate are now their enemies.

But back to rules. Yes, I think we need rules, even for war, and even for prisoners. And international law is part of that -- laws governing relations between nations.

International law may not be always be in the best interests of soldiers -- well, I would take it a step further. War is not in the best interest of soldiers. So why the hell don't the Americans try and stay out of wars, instead of rushing headlong into them?

Part of the Bush problem is that he has tossed out international law -- one prime example being Guantanamo, where people are held without charges, without trial, without a right to see a lawyer. Guilty until proven innocent.

So yes, I think that "enemy" prisoners should have rights.Just like I think "our" prisoners of war should have rights.

Ask any POWs in Japanese POW camps during WW2 what it was like not to have rights. The Japanese culture viewed warriors who were captured as having lost their honour and basically their right to live. Many died under appalling circumstances.

I am appalled by the deaths of the four armed American mercenaries in Fallujah. But what were they doing there in the first place -- American "civilians" armed in Iraq -- and obviously authorised to shoot Iraqis? What is the army of civilian security specialists in Iraq all about? Who are they accountable to?

I know I've rambled, but the point is, none of this would be happening if Bush and Wolfy had not deliberately gone to war when there was no demonstrated threat to the U.S. And in my opinion, it is only going to get worse for the Americans until there is some fundamental sea change in their policy. I don't see that happening with the current administration.

(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 00:08

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Just to make clear what we disagree on is whether war should have laws governing it. I totally agree with you that Bush fucked up. Governments need to govern their own lands with help from allies. Doesn't always work but it beats having a stronger one with money interests coming in.

Here's a few reasons why I think there shouldn't be laws on how soldiers have to act. They were sent there to kill not baby-sit. I'm not saying Japan deserved the atomic bomb but they did start a fight with the US. Your example of Japanese POW camps is another good example. There's also the Nazi camps. Has the world become more safe to live in since the Geneva Convention? Countries will always be fighting, it's inevitable. All through history the stronger was attacking the weak. Now they just twist the laws to fit their interests. When one country has the power to annihilate it's enemy do you think that enemy will attack? I doubt it. By taking away that power it gives the enemy a chance to win. (reply to this comment

From auslander
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 20:59

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Above comment a reply to "Shackled" below. Sorry.(reply to this comment

From Non-Americans are People Too
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 20:32

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Actually there are rules by which wars are fought. There's a little treaty called the Geneva Convention which states that abuse of prisoners in times of war is in violation of basic human rights and is illegal. As I recall, when the US first invaded Iraq Bush touted this treaty and warned that Iraqis who mistreated American POWs would be treated as war criminals. (reply to this comment
from dave
Sunday, May 09, 2004 - 16:35

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Below is letter I wrote earlier today to my reprentative in Congress regarding the Iraqi Prison scandal. I should add that I have a number of colleagues and dear friends currently serving in the US Armed Forces in Iraq and other places around the globe, that I repect, honor and support 100%. My comments in this letter are specifically in regards to the Iraqi Prison abuse scandal. I wrote what personally feel about this.
Sunday May 9, 2004

Dear Mr. Harold E. Ford Jr.,

I am proud to have you as my representative our Nation’s Capitol. I appreciate you taking time from your important duties and busy schedule to read this letter from me.

A word or two about me: I am a 29 year old single black male. I have been working in the Information Technology field as a Technical Analyst for the past 6+ years, with five of those years spent working in IT at AutoZone’s Corporate Office in Memphis, Tennessee. I love my job and enjoy technology. Since October 2003, I’ve been enrolled in the Cisco Networking Academy Program (CNAP) at Southwest Tennessee Community College in Memphis in order to continue to improve my skills and knowledge.

In light of the recent Abu Ghraib Iraqi prison scandal, I do not feel I can continue to sit by quietly, without voicing my opinion and sharing my feelings about these recent tragic events that have confused me as an American citizen and which I believe have permanently damaged our image as a nation in the eyes of the world.

I voted for Vice President Al Gore during the 2000 Presidential Election, but since then I have not really been overly concerned with politics. This is even with the fact that over the years since President George W. Bush has been in the power, I’ve seen many a colleague loose his or her job, our benefits shrink and the cost of health care and gas prices skyrocket.


So for the past several months, I have slowly moved from being a simple political observer, to a concerned citizen coming to realize more and more clearly as each day passes that we need a new direction in our Foreign policy in regards to Iraq, the US economy and a number of other important US domestic and international policies. I have since made a number of on-line contributions, first to the former Presidential Campaign of General Wesley Clark, and I now continue to donate and support Senator John Kerry’s bid for the White House. I even have a “John Kerry for President” bumper sticker on my SUV.

The reason I am writing this letter is because I believe strongly that US Secretary of Defense, Mr. Donald Rumsfeld must step down or be fired in response of the appalling abuse and torture of Iraqi prisoners at the infamous Abu Ghraib prison by US soldiers and prison guards. These atrocities have occurred under the direct guidance, supervision and encouragement from Military Intelligence, secretive agencies and shady DOD contractors.

I disagree with Vice President Dick Cheney’s comments posted on CNN’s website today in which he said regarding Mr. Rumsfeld: “...the best secretary of defense the United States has ever had. People ought to let him do his job”. I do agree that Mr. Rumsfeld is sincere and his reputation and brilliant career should not be forgotten. Mr. Rumsfeld’s resume, his commitment to his country and patriotism should not be questioned. It would be a tragedy to discount the decades of his loyal service to the United States in a heartbeat because of the current Abu Ghraib prison scandal.

But I have to ask, how can Mr. Rumsfeld be doing his job, when the President of the United States had to discover for himself just how bad and horrific the prison abuse and torture that occurred at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq was, by watching it on television along with the American people? How is it that you Mr. Ford and your colleagues on Capitol Hill were some of the very last people to find out about these crimes? I can only conclude that if Secretary Rumsfeld was in doing his job, he would have informed you and others in Congress months ago of these tragic and shocking events.

I also firmly believe we must immediately and permanently tear down the Abu Ghraib prison to make a clear and lasting statement to the world how sorry we are that this torture and abuse took place, and that the United States will not condone or tolerate any blemish on its good name in any way, shape or form.

While I wholeheartedly agree with any present and future court-marshals, convictions and sentencing of US personnel involved with the abuse and torture of Iraqi prisoners; it would be a grand shame and injustice if the kids involved were the only ones to be prosecuted for these crimes. I know these kids were wrong. They know they were wrong and their families know it too. But I cannot accept that they alone invented and thought up these torture techniques. I do believe they got caught up it the negative and abusive environment initiated by intelligence officers, commanders, agents and officials higher up the ladder, higher up the food-chain, and higher up the ladder of command. I also wonder if perhaps, some were pressured against their will to participate in these horrors.

US Secretary of Defense, Mr. Donald Rumsfeld should have already resigned out of principle alone the minute he heard about the torture and abuses, or at least as soon as the story broke on 60 minutes II. The President should have “let him go” by now, out of principal.

For the last few years, under Mr. Rumsfeld’s (and the President’s) poor leadership, we have seen a blatant disregard for International Law in Guantanamo Bay, Afghanistan and Iraq. The White House administration reflected particularly in the performance of the Department of Defense has stubbornly and repeatedly ignored the Geneva Convention and has shown no adherence to basic human rights and decency in its treatment of detainees and prisoners. To allow Mr. Rumsfeld to continue running the DOD, just because we are still at war in Afghanistan and Iraq, and in an Election year is equivalent in my mind as permitting former Enron Chief Financial Officer Andrew Fastow to run things and financial matters after the collapse of the Enron Empire.

Again, Mr. Harold E. Ford Jr., I thank you for taking the time to read this. I also appreciate your efforts as my representative in Washington. I’m sure it’s not easy and is a challenge at times, but you are doing a wonderful job. Please let me know how I may continue to show my support for you and your staff. God bless you.

(For the record, I give my unconditional permission to you to allow all or parts of this letter to be shared at will with whomever you seem fit to share it with, including my name.)

Sincerely,
David A. Rugely


(reply to this comment)

From The White House
Monday, May 10, 2004, 21:26

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Dear Mr Rugley

Your letter was forwarded to us and we discussed the matter thoroughly. We've come to the conclusion that as long as you have that John Kerry sticker on your bumper, we do not give a single turd what you think about Mr. Rumsfield. Nor will we ask him to step down for you or any other Democrat. That wouldn't be fair to our dear voters who put us in power now would it?

If you have any more comments or thoughts, please do continue to write us. Your letters are extremely useful when we run out of toilet paper.

Sincerely, Your government

(reply to this comment

From Historian
Monday, May 10, 2004, 22:54

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I think you should have said:

"...That wouldn't be fair to our dear Supreme Court Justices who put us in power now, would it?" (reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Monday, May 10, 2004, 22:50

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To my government:

I realize that our current President was absent when mother nature was handing out brains, but I had hoped that one or two of the staff working their asses off the make him look somewhat "presidential" would've remembered that neither he nor his staff were ever elected. If you recall, he was placed in office by the same Judges that he and his partner in crime regularly fraternize with. To say he is an elected official makes a mockery of our elections and is disrespectful to all the disenfranchised voters in FL whose votes were not counted until after the decision by the courts.

Now, if you don't mind, I would like request that you make an attempt to do your job and quit passing out favors and subsidies to your cohorts under the guise of legislation. As much use as The Patriot Act, The Clean Skies Act, The No Child Left Behind Act, The Healthy Forest Act, and The Iraq Resolution have been, I have enough toilet paper to last me until we boot your illegitimate asses out of office.

Sincerely,

A pissed off voter

(reply to this comment

From Tea
Monday, May 10, 2004, 22:32

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I was off today so I had a bit more time for fun and unfinished business. dave gave me an extra "Kerry for President" bumper sticker he had, which I immediately slapped on to the back of my car and then took it for a drive around the neighborhood to see what kind of slogans others were displaying. Not only are there no left-leaning bumper stickers on any of the cars I saw, there are no bumper stickers at all.

It really is quite the experience being pro-democrat in the heart of Bushland. You ought to try it sometime. Let’s see if we make it to Election Day in one piece.

But in spite of all the churches and church rhetoric and angry radio talk show hosts in the MidSouth, I have actually met more gays and lesbians here than I ever did when I used to live out near San Francisco. If these parents only knew what their kids are really up to. But that’s a whole other story altogether.(reply to this comment

From Zed
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 17:32

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I am writing this from Camp Victory North, Baghdad. I'm an infantryman. My unit patrols the Abu Ghraib sector, although we have no part in the running of the prison (that is left up to Military Police units), we are responsible for sending a large number of those detainees to prison. If you had done for an hour what we do here 24/7/365 you'd know that those prisoners were very well treated and deserved a lot worse. Because of those "poor tortured" souls, soldiers like me spend five straight days fighting and in the end have to pick up PIECES OF FALLEN COMRADES SO THAT THEIR FAMILIES BACK HOME HAVE SOMETHING TO BURY!!!!! THIS HAPPENNED JUST LAST WEEK!! You wrote "I do not feel I can continue to sit by quietly..." Just shut up and enjoy your freedom you ignorant F__K! People like you have no life. Why don't you come join me for a few days and then write your congressman. Shaka, I agree with your article. Thanks. --Sgt A. A Co 1-5CAV(reply to this comment
From
Monday, May 10, 2004, 14:17

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None of the above is a personal dig to soldiers who are faced with the hell of war. It’s more to do with human right issues. I think Baxter pointed out some important points about avoiding situations that breed revenge and hatred. (reply to this comment
From dave
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 18:10

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Zed, I respect and your response and your sacrifices.

At this moment I worry about people dear to me over there in Iraq whom I fear I will never see again. With both my grandfathers having served their country during WWII and worked for the US government until their passing away years later, a younger brother of mine having graduated the US Air Force, another younger brother of mine considering the US Army Rangers, the numerous poems and songs dedicated to our US service men an women that I've posted on this site for the last couple of years.. I hope that I wasn't coming across on this site with my letter as a complete ass****. Again, I meant no disrepect to you or others who bleed daily in Iraq. It's my free (or ignorant, as you say) speech, that's all. Again, my apologies for any offensed caused. Dave.(reply to this comment

From auslander
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 20:26

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Dave, I don't think you need to apologise for anything. Your letter was rational and well thought out. And millions of people hold similar views.

I think this issue illustrates the degree to which your nation and its citizens have become polarised over the liberation/occupation of Iraq. It must be quite tense.

Many of us who are not Americans view it all from a greater distance and different perspective.

To me, it seems that the terrorists have won. Could Osama have guessed in his wildest dreams when he bombed the World Trade Centre that the world would be the way it is today?

The current America administration has sacrificed several of its precious civil liberties, it has systemically dismantled over 200 years of international law, humiliated its traditional allies, it has run up an enormous debt that their children will pay for, and it has embedded it self in the Middle East with no easy way out, and people at home seem to live in a semi-permanent state of fear. All in the name of the "war on terror."

As I see it, Osama has won.

Do Americans have any clue as to how much of the rest of the world holds them in disdain?

I appreciate that Zed and others in uniform put their lives on the line every day. I also appreciate that many did not join the military thinking they would end up in Iraq doing the things they're doing. Most, from what I understand, wanted to get an education after having been raised in a fucking horrible cult.

But that does not affect the basic issues of morality concerning the war there. Americans seem to love to bleed for their boys and girls "in harms way," often forgetting that these same "boys and girls" are well-armed killing machines who have killed thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians. Where is the outrage over those deaths? Or are they just ragheads whose lives have little intrinsic value compared to those of Americans?

Four American mercenaries are killed in Fallujah and the Americans go nuts, killing hundreds of civilians to try and find the guilty. One commentator said it reminded him of the Vietnam era axiom "We had to destroy the village in order to save it."

Maybe Zed and others can shut the conversation down with their fellow Americans with a constant stream of generalisations and invectives, but it doesn't work with the rest of the world. The American military in Iraq hasn't done anything for us, except ratchet up worldwide tensions.

So Dave, don't apologise. Zed is supposed to be making the world safe for democracy, a cornerstone of which is free speech. His reaction, in my opinion, just illustrates how it has nothing to do with that at all.

Remember the American father of independence who said, "I may not agree with what you say, but I will fight to the death to preserve your right to say it."

I sometimes wonder what good could have been accomplished if all the money fighting the war on terror had instead been spent on alleviating the general good of humanity and addressing the root causes of poverty, injustice and terrorism.

Think, if after 9/11, the powers-that-be had said, "OK, we can go to war and spend $200 billion, or we can take that money and resolve and politcal will and develop lasting solutions to fundamental problems such as the Israeli- Palestinian conflict." Would the world be a better place today, safer from terror? Would the US be better off, safer, more prosperous? I think so.

I know this is a simplistic example, but long ago Dwight Eisehower, Republican president and former head of Supreme Command in WW2 put it this way.

"Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. This is not a way of life at all in any true sense. Under the clouds of war, it is humanity hanging on a cross of iron."

April 16, 1953



(reply to this comment

From Voltaire
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 11:56

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I never thought of myself as one of the fathers of American Independence!(reply to this comment
From Jerseygirl
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 11:34

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Well said! (reply to this comment
From auslander
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:12

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I know we're not supposed to post links or articles, but this one just went up on the Guardian site. It pretty much expresses my views on the subject of this thread.

The Guardian is great. Steve Bell's cartoons on the war in Iraq are spot on.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1213234,00.html(reply to this comment

From frmrjoyish
Monday, May 10, 2004, 06:41

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
But if we had spent that 200 million on resolving the mideast peace crisis Cheny's company Haliburton and Rumsfelds company Bectel wouldn't be making the billions of dollars they are making now off this war. And the weapons manufacturers selling weapons to Israel would go out of business. And if we hadn't secured our inalienable right as Americans to the cheapest oil prices in the world, we'd have to pay 5 dollars a gallon like the rest of the world, how the hell are we supposed to be able to drive our SUV's paying prices like that??(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 22:10

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Here's an example of someone who believes everything he reads in the news: "Four American mercenaries are killed in Fallujah and the Americans go nuts, killing hundreds of civilians to try and find the guilty."

You seem to believe that the world will be a better place. Human nature is to fight and conquer and survive. The strong will always be on top. I don't like it but it's the way it is. I like to believe that the world is not a good place but it is worth trying to save. And by saving I mean saving whats around you. That's each humans responsibility, not across the ocean. America had no right to invade Iraq. But once the soldiers are sent you can't judge them for treating the enemy with little mercy. The same government that made the Geneva Convention allowed this war to happen. If the enemy wishes to hide amongst its own civilians then what can we do? I feel bad for those civilians but war is war. It's either save the man next to you and take out the enemy and whats around them or die. With the weapons in use today can you expect less?

Long ago Eisenhower (notice the spelling aussie) said those things, but he also accepted the way the world is and commanded many soldiers to kill. Don't tell me their wasn't any civilian casualties then. (reply to this comment

From Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004, 15:59

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Fuckin A!

It's never been different and it never will.

(reply to this comment

From cassy
Monday, May 10, 2004, 05:53

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As long as there are people who think the way you do, this world will remain a dangerous place.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Monday, May 10, 2004, 18:58

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Which one are you refering to? Let me number them out so you can be more specific.

1. That when it comes to improving the world we should start with our own back yard and leave someone elses mess to themselves.

2. Soldiers that go to war and commit abuses should be understood given the situation they're in.

3. Save your comrade even if it means breaking some rules.

4. The world is not a good place but it is worth trying to save.

This is not a multiple choice question so feel free to choose them all.(reply to this comment

From cassy
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 02:58

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I find your number one option exactly what America should do--start with their own backyard and leave everyone else's messes to themselves. So you said it yourself. Therein lies the problem, they have no business in Iraq and are certainly not "defending" themselves. This part from the Yorkshire Press I just read today says it perfectly:

"Britain went to war in Iraq to bring human rights, democracy and the rule of law to a country where previously there had been a vile dictatorship. But if this country's troops are guilty of half of what has been alleged, they have – along with their American counterparts – made a mockery of these values, turned the task of winning the peace into an even greater hurdle and set back the cause of the wider war on terror by an immeasurable degree."


(reply to this comment

From cassy
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 02:58

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I find your number one option exactly what America should do--start with their own backyard and leave everyone else's messes to themselves. So you said it yourself. Therein lies the problem, they have no business in Iraq and are certainly not "defending" themselves. This part from the Yorkshire Press I just read today says it perfectly:

"Britain went to war in Iraq to bring human rights, democracy and the rule of law to a country where previously there had been a vile dictatorship. But if this country's troops are guilty of half of what has been alleged, they have – along with their American counterparts – made a mockery of these values, turned the task of winning the peace into an even greater hurdle and set back the cause of the wider war on terror by an immeasurable degree."


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From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:57

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I was asking which one of my thinking makes the world a dangerous place. You chose #1. Am I correct in assuming that #1 is what makes the world dangerous? I have to disagree.

Some of you keep bringing up about how America is the "white knight" going to Iraq to liberate the Iraqis and you just posted an article form the Yorkshire Press. What the press says is fantastic but very far from the truth. America and Britain did not go there for liberation, democracy and human rights. They just say that to appease the crowds. What they really went there for is to re-enforce there super power status and ally to the super power status. (reply to this comment

From moon beam
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 10:59

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And does this state of affairs sit well with you? I remember being in a cult where they told you incest and child abuse was for our own good. Obviously they only said that to "appease the crowds" and get them submitting and believing in it, when what they really wanted was accsess to children. Who now, that knows they were being lied too and used and turned into someone they may never have been, did things they may never have done, can condone or justify Zerby and co.? Only the ones who are still there!?

I left and found that out and I could never have said "Oh well thats the way it is and how it has always been" so there is nothing I can do, I actually found out there was alot I could do and I believe many people are better off for it. And there are many times one can get discouraged and feel like they are not making any difference. It's taught me patience anyhow. (reply to this comment

From
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 12:07

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I too, believe many people are better of for what you did. Thank you, moon beam.(reply to this comment
From cassy
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 02:56

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My above reply was more of a comment than an answer. You didn't include in your options what I was thinking of. But I guess to make it plain, I find it sad that you feel that humans are violent, exploitive and barbaric and that there is nothing anyone can do about it. I do not believe in fate and it's the attitude of resignation that I find dangerous because then no effort will be made to change or evolve into what we can be. Change and growth is possible. It's the very basis of evolution. We have evolved tremendously as a species and will continue to do so. We are moving away from our animal instincts-not towards them. We will continue to move forward, and I think we can speed up the process by becoming active and not passively accepting, or worse yet, condoning acts of morally reprehensible behaviour. While I see that you are trying to be realistic, I just don't agree that it's acceptable to condone it, or even praise it, as that will only allow it to flourish.(reply to this comment
From
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 11:39

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Doh!..of course most of us knew the real reason they went to war, even before they did, but they got backing from the people by pretending and spouting out a load of bollocks that they were "white knights". So all the people who were conned, should now be realising they've been dupped. (unless you like the alternative too!) And they should get mad and vote against bush, now they can see the lie as they say they didn't see it before.(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Wednesday, May 12, 2004, 17:36

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(
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If you already knew then why are you replying like you've been insulted? I thought I wrote it quite politely too. And since it was I who posted the comment stating that oil was the reason for war, why did you say this? "(unless you like the alternative too!) ". Before trying to insult me I suggest reading all my comments and rereading them because you have a tendency to misread. (reply to this comment
From
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 05:28

(
Agree/Disagree?)

Can you just be clear and say where you stand?

A) you Know it's about oil, (greed, racism and religous elitism) but don't give a shit that your stealing and killing and pissing alot of people off to get it.

B) you support the war because believe you are helping to make the world a better place by bringing "freedom" and democracy to "barbaric" nations.

(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 19:52

(
Agree/Disagree?)

I don't know if I can be more clear for you. I think my views on the war are obvious yet you keep misreading it. This isn't the first time. However, I do realise I'm not really a coherant and articulate writer.

Neither of the options you laid out for me to choose from are where I stand.

1. I do not agree with invading Iraq.

2. I do not agree with the prison abuses because they are immoral, but because of the situation they're in I do not agree with them being punished. The situation I'm refering to I've already explained and don't have time to write again. There are more details to this than we know and merely judging them from what we see and hear in the news is premature.

3. I could care less whether Bush is re-elected or not. He hasn't done the best of jobs but he hasn't done the worst. I know I couldn't do better.

4. This war is about oil and possibly to keep the Arab nations from growing to strong. And because I believe human nature is to conquer and survive I will not waste my time trying to change the mind of those in power.

5. I find most of you to lack appreciation for the safety you now live in. Imagine if you were living in a country with a dictator and in constant fear. I know it makes me glad to live in a country where I can live without fear and do as I wish, to a certain degree by my own moral code, and I will not question how it's provided.

And I'd appreciate it if you'd stop saying that I am America. (ex. "you Know it's about oil, (greed, racism and religous elitism) but don't give a shit that your stealing and killing and pissing alot of people off to get it.") I have done none of these things.

Our views on this topic differs and I respect your right to view as you wish. I'm already bored and uninterested with continuing this discussion. Online it can be hard to debate, especially since neither of us are the best of writers. In person perhaps it would've been more constructive and interesting. It's been a pleasure and I've learned alot.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Monday, May 10, 2004, 16:19

(Agree/Disagree?)

'If hamdryas babboons had nuclear weapons, they would destroy the world in a week'

EO Wilson

This world is a dangerous place. and never was any different. I say, we're all neither truly guilty or truly innocent. Sure, you and me didn't drop nukes on Hiroshima, or fire-bomb Dresden, and we certainly did not torture or abuse civilians; however, I'm wondering how far any of this is from our potential as human beings. I personally argue against the dehumanisation of men like Hitler and Stalin. These were humans, albeit circumstancially exceptional, as were those who carried out their directives. Having to study the nature of the socio-political machines these men built to further their own destructive ends has compounded the fact that those men and women on whom these systems were constructed were not extremely different from you and me. which make makes me consider that, in a way, the potential exists in all of us and the only necessary precursors to our own personal involvement in gross inhumanity are merely circumstancial.

You'll probably feel insulted by my assertions, and I don't blame you.

But I can't speak for myself with absolute certainty that ther are no circumstances in which I would allow myself to become accessory to the morally reprehensible. If I have this potential, then do I not in some way share the guilt for merely continuing the capacity in humans for destruction? The world has always been a dangerous place, so long as we have been in it. You ' as long as there are people who think the way you do', I say ' as long as there are people'.(reply to this comment

From
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 07:05

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)
Why is it that both you and shaka feel that nothing can be done to repair and help make the world a better place and reject peoples views on how to do so, than say its okay and somehow inevatable to make it worse?(reply to this comment
From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:52

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

Just how you misread Shaka's comments about Pat Tillman you have misread my comments. I never said, "its okay and somehow inevatable to make it worse". Remember that! Do you think you or anyone else on this planet is greater then Jesus or Buddha and can make the world live in peace? Whether there existence on this planet is real or not is besides the point. What's true is that many follow them and try to bring peace and have never succeeded. I admire those that try but it aint realistic. Like Baxter has pointed out and written beautifully on human nature. It's human nature to conquer and survive. The reason all these war laws are present, anti-war rallys, is because of TV. No one should have to see the gruesome things that go on unless you're actually involved in it. Leave it to the Men and Woman with a strong heart and not you Pacifists. Go home and live comfortable. (reply to this comment

From Baxter
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:37

(Agree/Disagree?)

There will always be those who suffer; there will always be those who struggle. The only difference now is that more people are aware of it, thanks to the gift of television.

I seek not to justify what we label injustice, I feel no need to. Regardless of whether I be an apologist or a detractor, the state of affairs will remain the same. Armies and nations will do whatever the feel necessary to do in order to secure their objectives, as will corperate and political bodies. What is at fault here is not any social development nor institution, but the very nature of man. It is something from which we cannot escape.(reply to this comment

From Shackled
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 18:43

(
Agree/Disagree?)
Fuckin A!(reply to this comment
From cassy
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 03:09

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Interesting point. Here lies the chicken and the egg paradox. You've got to have people first otherwise you'd have no psychopath people. No, I know that within me there is no way that I would be forced, pressured, or even incited to hurt another human being.

There are medical conditions/brain alterations that produce violent people. It also depends on a persons social environment during the crucial stages of development as a young child. While I agree that people can be pressured to do things, when there is sadistic pleasure taken from it, herein it is wrong and an aberration of normality.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Tuesday, May 11, 2004, 14:16

(Agree/Disagree?)

Cassy, I implore you to consider the young men who constituted the ranks of the Waffen SS. They were not, contrary to assertions from certain revisionist historians, entirely psychopaths- although some defininitely were. They were young, idealistic and proud. They were little different from the youth of almost any western nation at any time, contemperary circumstances granted. but they believed what they were told, as do most western youth, including those in the forces. and because of this they were parley to systematised genocide.

Some time in the future you may find yourself in a situation where you feel compelled to do something you would previously never considered morally tenable. there will, in this event, quite likely be extenuating ramifications. But you may be surpised to find yourself doing something you will regret; but momentarily, you'll feel good about it. because I did. And yet I regret it every day of my life. Maybe you'll be bigger than me, maybe not. But until you're there, you'll never know.

If someone raped one of my sisters, killed one of my brothers, etc. I'd feel psychopathic; I'd want to kill the perpetrator, his family, anyone close to him. I'd feel guilty for the rest of my life, and not just for the jail time. But I'd be ready to cross that line which my life experience has driven me to be somewhat more familiar with than I might have imagined.

I don't need justification for what I did; I feel shit about it. But cognitive/medical psychological explanations aside, I think there's something in all of us, including whether you admit it or not, that's potentially homicidal. My point is that trying to alienate those responsible for what we refer to as inhumanity is parley to self- deception. Nobody in this world is above it.





(reply to this comment

From moon beam
Monday, May 24, 2004, 10:25

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I find this study very interesting in its comparisons and simularities, both in light of prisoner abuse and what went on within the cult. Stanford prison experiment. www.prisonexp.org/slide-1.htm(reply to this comment
From reader
Monday, May 24, 2004, 12:30

(
Agree/Disagree?)
I agree, moon beam. In fact I was going to write an article about it here, but I have been too busy.(reply to this comment
From moon beam
Monday, May 24, 2004, 12:45

(Agree/Disagree?)
Great!! Look forward to reading it. (reply to this comment
From cassy
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 03:09

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

I agree with you on your point. But Hitler and Stalin do not belong in the category that you describe. But these things are all taken into account, for example, in a court of law. Again the defining line is whether it was meditated, planned out, or sadistic, or was it self-defense and because you were pushed or put into circumstances where it was the only recourse. Those soliders who took pleasure and were SMILING while doing these horrible acts are different than those that carried out an order or did it under social pressure (interestingly, they seem to be the ones that blew the whistle on it--good for them). I understand them, however, I do not pity or feel I need to understand the soliders who raped young Iraqi boys in the prison--or women. Nothing can excuse that.(reply to this comment

From Baxter
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 16:28

(Agree/Disagree?)
I have never argued to justify the actions of these miscreants. (reply to this comment
From Ne Oublie
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 03:25

(Agree/Disagree?)

Is there some new evidence which I haven't heard of yet? All of the pictures and reports I've seen have been of adult male prisoners who were abused - I haven't heard a single mention of sexual abuse of boys or women so far!

If there is something I've missed, then I apologise - but otherwise, I ask you to please keep to the topic, and not get into making sweeping inaccurate comments.(reply to this comment

From Look it up
Thursday, May 13, 2004, 04:02

(
Agree/Disagree?)
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4855930/
http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1215645,00.html
http://news.bostonherald.com/national/view.bg?articleid=22093
http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,2763,1214698,00.html(reply to this comment
From Ahem...
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 23:45

Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 4 out of 5(
Agree/Disagree?)

The difference was: In WW2 we were the ones being attacked. This time, we're the aggressors. I feel bad for our troops too, I want them brought home immediately so that they don't have to face danger every day.

If Zed wants to get mad at anyone, it should be those stupid chicken hawks that sent him off to die for oil.

War is hell, it is a dehumanizing experience for both the invaders and the invaded. The mob in Fallujah and the MP's in Abu Ghirab are just two sides of the same coin. One atrocity does NOT justify the other. (reply to this comment

From Shackled
Sunday, May 09, 2004, 23:51

(
Agree/Disagree?)

I don't understand what your point was in offering that difference. You saying the invaded can break the rules but the aggressor can't? Or are you refering to Eisenhowers comment on weapons production?

I've p(reply to this comment

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