We Aren’t the Soviets… but Afghanistan is Killing Us

Afghanistan FlagAlright, I decided I would take tonight to tackle the questions about Afghanistan that were asked of me and to offer my take on the situation we are watching play out in the political arena around the President’s decision, or lack thereof, to supply additional troops to the theater. Most of the questions asked of me the other night were about Iran, and Iran will get its own article at some point in the near future. The question asked about Afghanistan was whether it is time to bring the boys home and let that country do whatever they are going to do to themselves. That is a tough one to answer, but I will do my best. First, though, I want to talk about how this is all playing out politically. The conservatives are running crazy around the delays in answering the request for a surge. It seems they have a large issue with it “taking too long.” And the liberals are, it seems divided on the entire idea. So let’s take a look.

Just Another Little Joke my Marine Friends, LOL  I found this a month or two ago and looked for a similar one with the SF tab in place of the Ranger. If anyone finds that one please forward it!

Just Another Little Joke my Marine Friends, LOL I found this a month or two ago and looked for a similar one with the SF tab in place of the Ranger. If anyone finds that one please forward it!

Allow me to say up front, as D13 did the other night, that I look at this from the perspective of a soldier. I was not an officer. I worked for a living (just a little joke D13, lol). Take that away and D13 and I are a lot alike. I will leave it at that. I have no desire to discuss my military career. Just know that I had one. As someone who has fought, lost friends, and re-enlisted many times to continue doing so, I agree with D13 that it gives one a unique perspective on the way a war should be fought, the reality of the enemy we face, and the damage that bad political decisions can cause. So take what I say for what it is worth. It is just another soldier’s perspective.

We invaded Afghanistan in October of 2001 under the banner of “Operation Enduring Freedom.” We had just been attacked in New York and Washington. So allow me to share my thoughts on our initial move to invade. I supported the move by President Bush to invade when we did. The intelligence supported (and still does) the fact that the Taliban was a direct supporter of Al Qaeda. As a side, I know BF and some others argue against this mattering on the basis that they do not believe Al Qaeda was responsible for 9/11. I won’t get back into that argument. 9/11 or no, Al Qaeda is responsible for multiple terrorist attacks on United States interests over the years. There is no other way to paint it… Al Qaeda is an enemy of the United States and much of the rest of the non-Muslim world. And I mean all of it. They have attacked Buddhist and Hindu and Christian and Jewish cultures. Don’t argue it. Do your research. I have. They are an enemy of the US. Period.

So I supported the decision. There were a couple of reasons. I was mad. I won’t lie about that. I had just left the military and had it not been for some pleading by many loved ones who did not want to give up their new found ability to not worry about me all the time, I would have immediately re-enlisted and went back to doing what I did best. Whether it was from me or not, I felt the world needed a harsh response for the attacks on our soil. Like it or not, we are the world’s big dog. You don’t pee in the big dog’s yard. We had to do something. Afghanistan was a known terrorism supporter, a known big supplier of drugs, and a known country of government that suppressed its people, especially its women, in the worst way. To put it bluntly, I was mad. Someone needed an ass whippin. And I figured Afghanistan will do. Was it right of me to feel that way? I don’t know anymore. But that is an honest assessment of what I felt. Judge away.

Taliban Executing Women on Famous Soccer Killing Fields

Taliban Executing Women on Famous Soccer Killing Fields

Second, I thought to myself, this President is pissed. Which means we are going to fight this war the way that war is supposed to be fought. No holds barred. I wish there were no war. I would love to see us, at this point, become a defense only country, but if we are going to pick a fight, then I expect us to play to win. I thought this would be an instance where we would do so. Because of that, I was supportive. I figured we would go in, whip the Taliban, stomp any insurgency, burn the poppy fields, set an example for anyone else that might want a shot at the champ, and go home. Hindsight being 20/20, had I known we would fight the war the way we have, I would not have been nearly as supportive. I know some of you won’t think much of me for that. It seems brutal of me. But it is honest.

We started out well enough. We whipped the Taliban. This isn’t surprising considering that the US had been working on plans to dismantle the Taliban well before the attacks on 9/11. The way I would have wanted things to go stopped about right there, however. And the result has been an 8 year mess, the 8th anniversary of which is Wednesday. Operation Enduring Freedom has handled the bulk of the work, while a United Nations initiative, ISAF, has handled the securing of the area around Kabul and the government put in place. The Taliban had a plan for this staggering defeat. The plan was for members to go underground, merge with the population for a couple of years while plans were made and strength was rebuilt, and then launch a new wave to regain what was lost. That is the plan that has been put in place and that we have seen result in a reassertion of the insurgence. It was a smart plan. It is sad that we knew about that plan and still allowed it to happen.

Fast forward to the campaign of 2008. In their ongoing plan to blame everything on George Bush, the Democrats exclaimed that McCain was another term of Bush. And this was bad because Bush and the stupid Republicans had dropped the ball. They had split our focus by attacking Iraq, instead of keeping the focus on Afghanistan, which was the real problem. According to the Democrats, especially Obama, Afghanistan was the right war. Afghanistan was the important war. Afghanistan was the war we had to win. He continued that message once in office, with a major policy speech in March outlining the importance of defeating the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan:

Obama-Clinton.jpgOnly a comprehensive strategy that prioritizes Afghanistan and the fight against al Qaeda will succeed, and that’s the change I’ll bring to the White House. Barack Obama, 10/22/08, Richmond Campaign Speech

I want the American people to understand that we have a clear and focused goal: to disrupt, dismantle, and defeat al-Qaida in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and to prevent their return to either country in the future. If the Afghan government falls to the Taliban or allows al-Qaeda to go unchallenged, that country will again be a base for terrorists who want to kill as many of our people as they possibly can… Afghanistan is inextricably linked to the future of its neighbor, Pakistan, where al-Qaeda and the Taliban now aim at seizing control of a state that possesses nuclear weapons… a return to Taliban rule would condemn their country to brutal governance . . . and the denial of basic human rights to the Afghan people — especially women and girls… the world cannot afford the price that will come due if Afghanistan slides back into chaos. Barack Obama, 3/27/09, Speech outlining the “new path” forward for Afghanistan.

Now we come to the present and find that the U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, has reported that without a new strategy and a substantial increase in troop numbers, failure in Afghanistan is likely. I have read what I can find from the report that has been leaked. As the Stratfor article linked to below mentions, I am not sure that the strategy Mc Chrystal is proposing is the right one. I have my doubts. But I can certainly see that the strategy we are currently using isn’t getting the job done. First let’s talk about the political wrangling.

McChrystal on right... Note what is on his left shoulder. That is why I trust his judgement

McChrystal on right... Note what is on his left shoulder. That is why I trust his judgement

Conservative talks hosts are on the offensive over this. They are eager to find another case of the President either not having the testicular fortitude to follow through on his previous claims of the importance of winning in Afghanistan or another case of a campaign promise broken or another case of a weak President who is unable to stand up to the wacked out far left who want the only war the US supports to be the animals and trees versus the human population. I listened all week to the rhetoric coming from the right on this. Overwhelmingly I found most of it to be a real stretch in terms of what they were claiming was the situation. The first question I want to ask them is, “did you actually read the recommendations from McChrystal and agree with them or are you simply supporting the idea because it is more war and opposed by the far left?”

When it comes to this rhetoric from the far right on conservative talk stations, I say that they are wrong. They are wrong for questioning the President on the speed of his making a decision on what to do in Afghanistan. If this report had come from the General and the President sat on it for 6 months, I would support their bitching because they would be right. But it has been a couple of days. Let me tell you what I want from the Commander in Chief when it comes to making a decision on big troop deployments or future strategies: I want him to get it right. I want him to talk to everyone he needs to talk to. I want him to consult with the General as much as he needs to. I don’t need it to be a decision made at the snap of a finger. He can’t wait forever. But whatever decision he makes, I want it to be the right decision. Because in the end, my brothers are over there living and dying by that decision. So the conservative talk show hosts need to shut their damn yap and let the man think for a minute.

Next there are the members of Congress jumping all over the talk show circuit, both on the radio and TV. One of hte overwhelming things I heard from both Republicans and Democrats over the last week is a disdain that McChrystal has not appeared to Congress to seek their approval. John McCain railed about this on the Senate floor last week. Bob Casey talked about it on Fox News Sunday. Evan Bayh discussed it on CNN and on Fox News. The overriding theme seems to be that before anything gets done, the Senate needs to debate the situation and come up with a plan and a strategy for how to move forward in Afghanistan. To this I say… Bullshit. Congress has a say on whether we go to war. After that, in my opinion, they need to shut the eff up and stay out of the way. I don’t need a bunch of lawyers sitting around pretending that they know jack shit about fighting a war. You voted to go to war. Now leave it in the hands of the military, which includes the Secretary of Defense and the President. Congress…. ZIP IT. Go back to your games of blaming each other for wanting health care to kill Americans.

"See, The problem General, is that you don't get to know what I know, so you can't possibly understand how to win the war."

"See, The problem General, is that you don't get to know what I know, so you can't possibly understand how to win the war."

As for the President and his making a decision about what to do with the request from General McChrystal. Allow me to say this. The President has Generals appointed to the positions they have for a reason. THEY are the experts on how to fight a war. If you want to have heart surgery, do you consult a doctor or an auto mechanic? If you want to sue someone do you ask a lawyer or retail salesperson? Exactly, you go to the experts and you trust them to know what they are talking about. They live it, breath it, research it. You want to go to war, you talk to a General. Formulating a plan for Afghanistan is what McChrystal does. It is all that he does. It what was the President appointed him to do. So when that General comes to you and says this is what we need to do, you better listen up. Because he is the expert. If you don’t follow his recommendation, you better have a really good reason why. And it better make sense. Otherwise, you are a President that is far too smug and who doesn’t know the limits of his expertise. Talk about dangerous.

Now for what I think we need to do in Afghanistan. I have two answers. We have to do one or the other in my opinion. I don’t think my answers will come as a surprise to anyone.

Option 1. Take off our chains and let the military do its thing. As I said, I don’t like war. It sucks. But if you are going to be in one, the stupidest thing you can do is to fight it by agreeing to terms that your enemy won’t agree to. I know people don’t like the idea of civilian deaths. Me either. But it is a necessary evil if you are going to fight a war. These people have the ability on their own to force the Taliban out of hiding and not allow them to hide among the population. If they don’t do that, then they are unfortunately setting themselves up for a bad day at the office. I know that BF is chomping at the bit to tell me how hypocritical and immoral I am. Allow me to share a short piece of my learnings.

The Spartans Knew How to Fight when Pushed to Defend Themselves

The Spartans Knew How to Fight when Pushed to Defend Themselves

Imagine if you can… being outnumbered 100 to 1. You have superior weaponry and training. They have the numbers. When you peer over the windowsill, you see their “snipers”. They are laying on the ground taking aim. On each side of them, an inch from their arm is a woman sitting their as a shield, not held there as a captive. She is doing it because she wants to do it. Sitting on his back is a little boy, maybe 8 years old, further voluntary protection. See these guys know that Americans don’t like shooting women and children. So they surround themselves with them, knowing we won’t shoot. There are dozens of these rifleman. They are throwing rounds at you like mad. You can move. You can’t retreat. Now you are faced with a decision. What would you do?

That is not a hypothetical situation. That is war. And it happened. THAT is what our soldiers face. I don’t like them being there in the first place. But if we put them there, that is what they will look over the windowsill and see. They will see mortar fire coming from a mosque. They will see pregnant woman who’s belly is actually a couple pounds of explosive and ball bearings. They will see children asking them breathlessly for help and leading them into a trap. War sucks. That’s the deal. If you haven’t been in one, you have no idea. You are spouting nothing but your emotional appeals to a willing group of listeners. Those that have been there know the reality. They know war isn’t pretty. And they don’t like it any more than you do. But if you tell them they have to fight it, don’t you dare question the way they do.

4th Generation Warfare

4th Generation Warfare

I have heard the argument that this is a different type of war that firepower can’t win. That the US is fighting a losing battle because the “4th generation warrior” is slicker, sneakier, and won’t face you head on. I will tell you that if you unleash our military, take off their restraint and allow them to do their job, they will finish off the 4th generation warrior just as fast as they finished off the others. Will it be brutal? Yes. Will it result in more innocent deaths than the “play nice” attitude of modern US warfare? Yes. Will we be done with the war and have out boys home a whole lot quicker? You betcha.

I don’t like this option. I don’t like war. I don’t like us having to destroy lives and I don’t like to see innocent people killed because of the idiot terrorists around them. But if you tell those boys that they have to stay there and fight, then you let them fight to the best of their ability. Allow them to use every technological advantage they have. Allow them to inflict maximum damage, use shock and awe, and do whatever else is needed to win. Winning hearts and minds is bullshit. If we have win the hearts and minds, we never will, no matter how nice we play. So if you choose the option to continue to fight in Afghanistan, or anywhere else for that matter, you unleash the dogs, and let them do what soldiers do. There is no other way. It should make our politicians less willing to go to war, knowing that if they do they are committing themselves to growing hatred for America because of how brutal the consequences of that decision.

Option #2. Stop now. End this war and come home. It doesn’t matter how long we stay in Afghanistan, we will never change what it is. We will never install a government that operates the way that we want it to. Simply look next door at Pakistan. We have given them 6.8 Billion dollars to fund their military “support” for our war on terror. And we find out now that only $500,000 of that went to doing what we gave it to them to do. The rest went to whatever our “friends” decided they wanted to spend it on to work on their economy or keep up appearances that the government is doing good for the people or bolster their effort against India. THAT is the reality of the region. Corrupt governments. Whether we pull out of Afghanistan tomorrow or in 20 years, the result will be the same. A wholly corrupt government will come to power the second we aren’t there to stop it from happening.

Taliban Version of Honor

Taliban Version of Honor

We cannot stop Al Qaeda in Afghanistan or Pakistan under the current rules of engagement or as long as the governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan continue to only pretend to support that endeavor. However, if this is the option that is taken, you don’t take it just in Afghanistan. You take it everywhere. Bring the soldiers home. Take up the defensive posture that I have espoused in the past. Give the world a reason to trust the United States again. Show them that throughout the world we are committed to operating only in a defensive manner. That is a path to America regaining her stature in the world. Leaving Afghanistan and saying to the world, “we have decided that we took out the Taliban and now must leave the country to develop its own way, it is the right thing to do,” only works if that is a widespread action. Shaking one man’s hand while simultaneously punching four others won’t convince the bar that you are a nice guy now.

What would I prefer? Obviously option 2. As I said, I don’t like war. I know what it is and if I could eliminate on the planet I would. And I have already gone in depth with my desire for the US to regain a position of defense only. We have no right to force other sovereign nations to do what we decide is right. Nobody fights the 300 pound guy in the corner of the bar who says he just wants to have a drink and be left alone. We are too powerful to be attacked on our own soil in an invasion style attack. Get defensive, show the world our morals, values, and principles, and they won’t have any reason to pick a fight with us.

Of course that would mean that we have to take another step…. We would have to get this country to start showing morals, values, and principles that would be a good example to the world. Our federal government sure doesn’t have any. So I guess step one is to replace all of those assholes.

Of course that is just the opinion of a soldier. I realize I don’t have a degree from Harvard or Yale. What do I know?

‘Obama’s war’ – New troops, new plan – Mike Allen and Alexander Burns – POLITICO.com

Obama’s Move: Iran and Afghanistan | STRATFOR

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Comments

  1. Posting for email comments.

    Hope everyone had a good weekend!

    G!

  2. When we went into Afghanistan, I had visions of surgical strikes like Desert Storm. I know Bush said it would be more of a ground war, not be easy, and we would be there for awhile. But I don’t think it had to turn out like it has. Like you say, let the military do the job, turn ’em loose.

    Iraq was the same, it was allowed to chug along when we should have “surged” from day one.

    I am to the point now of just wanting to bring the troops home, and use our funds to build a “don’t mess with us” defense. This pissing around has been ridiculous, expensive, and incompetent.

  3. Good Morning to All

    I would have to say I agreed with Bush when we attacked Afghan in 2001. I thought it was the place we needed to be after 9/11 happen. But I thought we need to hit hard and fast. Go in with everything and finish it. I just thought the longer we stay, the more the situation will turn against us. So what do we do, we start another war in Iraq and pretty ingore the first one we started. If we plan to win over the people and change this country. I truly believe we will lose this war, regardless of how many troops we send. Their government will be always working against us. So the way I see, we go in now full force and finish this. Or we pull out completely. This is no middle ground from what I can see

  4. US,

    Agree wholeheartedly with you about Congress, if they don’t like the way that the war is being prosecuted, the remove the funding for it. They won’t because none of them want to be seen as “soft on terrorists”. For all of the democrats bitching, they could have stopped either either of our fights in Iraq or Afghanistan long ago. After-all, that’s how they did it in Vietnam, just quit paying for it.

    I do have to raise an issue about the non-action by the President though. Sources that I trust (no, I don’t have any cites from news sources)have said that general McChrystal’s report was delivered in August, 2 months ago, and that the White House has unoffically asked that CENTOM delay the official request for more troops for 6 weeks. Again, these are from sources that i trust, but I have no way to verify the veracity of the statements.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      Redleg – one of the questions I ask is when was McChrystal actually put in charge? It seemed quick that one day he was “in” and the next day we seemingly had an assessment and a report asking for more soldiers. It isn’t that I know anything more about fighting battle/wars – but a typical request by most anyone placed in a new command (business life as well) is – ‘give me more people’. As with much everything else, there are likely facts and discussions we do not and should not have awareness for. I would just hope that there isn’t some convenient political reason we are not intently reviewing the situation.

      To me – much of this falls in a debate I put forth before. By trying to do everything at the same time we ran the risk (some of which we are now realizing) of doing almost nothing “well”. One can only juggle so many balls and dilution of decision making (or at least perception therein) into the Hall of Czars only makes matters worse – we take our eye off the ball of the economy and the wars by focusing on issues that really could have waited at least a few months (Cap N Trade, Healthcare Reform). I also give ample credit to the conservatives who were successful in their own Chappaquiddick sort of way by driving the public conscious into deep corners that were not particularly helpful either (SCOTUS debate, Birthers, Indite one czar – indite all czars).

      • Ray, even you have to admit putting the “Stimulus” directly into Health Care Reform would have actually created “quantifiable and permanent” jobs. It hasn’t been ABOUT the economy yet. Payback and pandering and even more payback. There’s the true accomplishments of the current incarnation of POTUS. There’s a better argument that the Olympic garbage was pay back for those involved with both real estate in Chicago and Obama’s political career than there is he’s been working hard at correcting America’s manufacturing shortcomings. There’s better argument that the auto bailout was more about protecting his unionist benefactor’s than saving “American Industry”. All that money thrown down a well could just have easily been doled out retraining those out of work for new rolls inside the Health Industry which is an area of actual growth and staffing shortfalls on a global scale.

        The czar issues also are very much “real”. Changes in policy which force vast reductions in profits due to “green” initiatives and the like will bring once again automation back to the forefront of manufacturing and raw resource management. I’m seeing that in mining right now. In November I go to Hanover for training on next years PLC’s as automation is once again the most cost effective means of production. For years many have neglected such in that human costs were far below those of automated systems.

  5. v. Holland says:

    This may be a stupid question but I have wondered about the reasoning behind going into Iraq, when we were already involved with Afghanistan-you soldiers out there or anyone else who has experience -was there any tactical reasoning involved in splitting up this battle with extremists to two fronts?

  6. bottom line says:

    Q: What do I know? – USW
    A: Obviously plenty. I assume you’re joking.

    “So take what I say for what it is worth. It is just another soldier’s perspective.” – USW

    When discussing war, I’d say a soldiers perspective is valued and respected.

    John O’Neal Was a FBI agent assigned to the anti-terrorism task force. His specific assignment was to monitor Al Qaeda. He did so, and did so with a bit of enthusiasm. It’s my understanding that he was a pretty gung-ho type of agent. He did his job and did it well. What were his findings? …That Al Qaeda was planning something BIG, and whatever it was was gonna happen pretty soon. He also guessed that it would be in NYC. He KNEW he was on to something. He made it clear to his superiors that this was a big deal and that action needed to be taken immediately. They ignored him. He kept pushing. They kept ignoring him. He went over the FBI’s head. And they continued to ignore him. I suspect they were intentionally steiffling his investigation. Understandably, he got frustrated, and quit his job. Ironically, he found a new one as Head of Security at the WTC. He died on 9/11.

    They KNEW it was comming and let it happen. 9/11 was a 400 billion dollar fundraiser, and an excuse to strip us of our rights. If we wanted to win in Iraq and Afghanistan, we would already have done so. But we’re not there to win. We’re there to use up all of our old out-dated weapons platforms, and to test the new stuff out. As our war machines are starting to age and our adversaries are catching up with our tech, we begin to lose our 20-30 year technological advantage. The answer to this problem?…Start a war to use up the old stuff before it is no longer cost effective to maintain, sell whatever is left to other countries, thus controlling their level of advancement. Why is it that we don’t go more than a few years without going to war somewhere? Seems like it would be a little more random. Ike was spot on. He WOULD be one to know. He tried to warn us. The “defense” industry is doing quite well these days. Thanks “W” and predecessors. It’s all about $$$ and power.

    “Option 1. Take off our chains and let the military do its thing.” – USW

    Yep, That’s what I came up with. But That would defeat the real purpose.
    USW

    “We will never install a government that operates the way that we want it to.”
    “Whether we pull out of Afghanistan tomorrow or in 20 years, the result will be the same.” – USW

    Exactly. They know this. We aren’t there to save anyone.

    “The President has Generals appointed to the positions they have for a reason. THEY are the experts on how to fight a war.” – USW

    Exactly. The general knows what needs to be done. But this is about $$$ and power. Not winning. Watch, He won’t get the troops he asks for. He’ll get a few, only so that BHO can make it appear that he’s trying to help out the good general. How do I know this? Because BHO said…

    “Only a comprehensive strategy that prioritizes Afghanistan and the fight against al Qaeda will succeed, and that’s the change I’ll bring to the White House.” Barack Obama, 10/22/08, Richmond Campaign Speech.
    It’s the same logic that I used to assess the Bernanke statement on whether or not we are likely through with the recession…Liars lie.

    (caption under pic.)”McChrystal on right… Note what is on his left shoulder. That is why I trust his judgement” – USW

    I trust him because he is an honest bottom line thinker. His realistic assessment of the cold hard truth is idicative of his ability to call it like he sees it. People like the good general don’t bullshit themselves or anyone else. This is why I trust him.

    “I have heard the argument that this is a different type of war that firepower can’t win. That the US is fighting a losing battle because the “4th generation warrior” is slicker, sneakier, and won’t face you head on. I will tell you that if you unleash our military, take off their restraint and allow them to do their job, they will finish off the 4th generation warrior just as fast as they finished off the others. Will it be brutal? Yes. Will it result in more innocent deaths than the “play nice” attitude of modern US warfare? Yes. Will we be done with the war and have out boys home a whole lot quicker? You betcha.” – USW

    Is this immoral? Yea. So be it. Unfortunately, it’s too late to just turn around and go home without finishing the job. Break out the B-52’s, daisy cutters, and MK-84’s! It’s time to annihilate these shitholes WW2 carpet bomb Dresden style! Bring our boys(and girls) home!

    “When it comes to this rhetoric from the far right on conservative talk stations, I say that they are wrong. They are wrong for questioning the President on the speed of his making a decision on what to do in Afghanistan.” – USW

    While I see your point and note that their rhetoric is out of ignorance and impatience, IMHO, I think that we should ALWAYS question authority. It’s the whole reason for our freedom of speech.

    “Imagine if you can… being outnumbered 100 to 1. You have superior weaponry and training. They have the numbers. When you peer over the windowsill, you see their “snipers”. They are laying on the ground taking aim. On each side of them, an inch from their arm is a woman sitting their as a shield, not held there as a captive. She is doing it because she wants to do it. Sitting on his back is a little boy, maybe 8 years old, further voluntary protection. See these guys know that Americans don’t like shooting women and children. So they surround themselves with them, knowing we won’t shoot. There are dozens of these rifleman. They are throwing rounds at you like mad. You can move. You can’t retreat. Now you are faced with a decision. What would you do?” – USW

    1 – give up atheism and start praying. There are no athiests in fox-holes(or hummers).
    2 – disregard civilian(enemy combatant) body shields and return fire.
    3 – request re-enforcements and/or air support if available
    4 – hope like hell my barrell doesn’t overheat
    5 – kiss my 1 vs 100 ass goodbye

    “And I have already gone in depth with my desire for the US to regain a position of defense only.” “We have no right to force other sovereign nations to do what we decide is right.” – USW

    Agreed. I wasn’t around to catch your “in debth” description of your desire for a “defense only” position, but I’ve often argued the benifits of a semi-isolationist strategy. We need to stay out of it. If we get attacked, don’t send ground troops…drop a bunch daisy cutters and be done with it. War is war, and there’s nothing humane about it. Why even try to be humane? It only renders our strategy slow and ineffective.

    Thanks, have a nice day.
    BL

    • BL, USW, BF, JAC, et., al:

      Whoa-a! Some very heavy commentary going on here – and quite openly I love it. US Weapon again an inspiring article that has evoked quite a bit from your audience, kudos are in order my friend. Truth be told and you did a marvelous job at it, especially from the ‘professional’ soldiers perspective – yet the truth told part I am alluding too is in the notion that if it was a war we are fighting then…bring the ‘A’ game and sex, age, or anything else means a thing insofar as the definition of war is – defeat the enemy, their infrastructure, their ordinance, everything that is capable of being destroyed needs to be destroyed.

      Now I know that sounds like a war monger’s definition insofar as every soldier wants the path of least resistance; and I do understand the need to keep and/or maintain utilities and other structures, however this notion does not fit into my definition of war.

      For those who think or feel that nothings been accomplished in Afghanistan well, you are simply flat out wrong. However, I hasten to add that the greatest improvements militarily have come at the behest of B-52s and their bombing missions. Who knows if Bin-laden’s alive? There was an awful lot of carnage done in those mountains in the beginning. Yet I remain freaking out at what was found after the tons of dust settled: Chinese advisors (in uniform?), huge caches of Chinese weapons and not just small arms, rather surface to air, surface to surface missiles and the list is endless.

      How many Iranian and Russian quasi-advisors were found? Do the research. The most important thing for anyone to think about is what is behind the obvious? In Viet Nam most felt it was the need for Tungsten steel or even what little oil was found in the region. Yet, are we all foolish enough to even suggest this smoke and mirror tactics. I had several fellow soldiers tell me it was for ‘population control’ and given the time in history and America’s agenda at the time, heck I don’t doubt it. But we should be asking ourselves what is our current agenda in Afghanistan – moreover, what is the long term objective strategically and do these two ever line up?

      My point real quick: Every politician, CEO, or business owner has an ‘Agenda’ (Hidden Agenda?) any and every time the USA enters into combat and unfortunately it has very little to do with war and everything to do with money. Therefore I’m all in for “Option I” without stipulation – every man, woman, child, wildebeest, or water buffalo that gets in the way…Oops! My bad! And end it.

      Btw, the Pentagon is actually in Virginia.

      • bring the ‘A’ game

        So let’s follow this (misuse) of a game (since life and death is no game).

        You do not bring an NBA team to play a junior high team.

        All this does is:
        1) Shows that the NBA is ridiculous.
        Every point they score is “boo’d”

        2) Shows how ‘gutsy’ the kids are.
        Every point they score is ‘wildly cheered’

        3) If the NBA wins, nobody cares
        4) If the kids win, it is front page and top line news everywhere.

        It is a rotten strategy with no victory.

        • If your agenda is to get the crowd to cheer for you, then you are correct that it is a bad strategy. However, that is not the agenda I would think is at play, BF. If the agenda is to prove that high school kids shouldn’t go around telling people they can beat an NBA team, boo’d or not, mission accomplished.

          • That wasn’t the agenda – but let’s carry the analogy.

            If a bunch of street kids goad the NBA to come play them – on their street in the ‘hood’, at their time in the middle of the night, on their court with broken asphalt, using their flat basketball, shooting at twisted hoops, with broken back boards, in front of their crowd…

            ….then you’re a fool to be goaded.

  7. Ray Hawkins says:

    USW – great article – and interesting perspectives.

    A couple of questions

    1. Any idea how long McChrystal has been in charge of Afghan? It seemed like he was just given that position which is why I thought, “wow”, he already has recommendations?

    2. Who else has their hands in the decision making military-wise? By this, I mean relative to McChrystal, what is the play of others in CENTCOM (General Petraeus, General Allen) and the Joint Chiefs?

    3. In the attacks that reported on yesterday and today – they mentioned that closing several of these forward bases (like the one assaulted over the weekend) are part of the ‘new’ strategy – is that McChrystal or the prior folks?

    While I actually advocate your #1 answer, I am afraid #2 is becoming the path du jour. I look at the obvious and ask myself who is arming these people (insurgents, Taliban, Al Qaeda)? Is it Pakistan? Pakistan clearly has a role in this (in working against us), but a solution that has any measure of finality has more potential to set everything ablaze.

    I agree that the Afghan government has no means or hope or desire to remove corruption. Perhaps they are what we are destined to become (or have we already in our own way?).

    • Ray:

      From Wikipedia: “General Stanley A. McChrystal, USA (born August 14, 1954)[1] is the current Commander, International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and Commander, U.S. Forces Afghanistan (USFOR-A).[2] He previously served as Director, Joint Staff from August 2008 to June 2009 and as Commander, Joint Special Operations Command from 2003 to 2008, where he was credited with the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, leader of Al-Qaeda in Iraq, but also criticized for his role in the investigation of the Pat Tillman friendly fire incident.[3] He assumed his current assignment on June 15, 2009.”

      If you go to Wiki you will find that the General has been intimately involved in operations in Afghanistan and Iraq for many years. So while on the official job since June he should have had much information and personal experience from which to form a quick assessment.

      As BF provided the other day, his report did much more than call for more troops. If reported accurately, it claims that there is no winning strategy in place nor is there any winning strategy conceivable at this time. THAT IS THE PART THAT WORRIES ME.

      If that part is true then Mr. Obama is correct in taking some time on this. The command staff should have been working on this from the day it was presented, reportedly the end of August. The POTUS does not need to be involved at that point. YES, YOU HEARD ME CORRECTLY. THE TALKING HEADS ARE UNFAIRLY TAKING CHEAP SHOTS AT POTUS OVER HIS HANDLING OF THIS REPORT. THEY HAVE NOTHING CONCRETE TO CRITICIZE AT THIS POINT.

      • Common Man says:

        JAC

        You are back! Hope all is well and your have, and write additional thoughts!

        CM

        If in fact, and I don’t doubt you, that there is no “conceivable” winning strategy then our next step should be an easy one to make; Get out.

        CM

        • CM:

          Have been a little busy past few days. And I am leaving for a week of fishing and carrying on with old friends.

          I OWE YOU two responses and promise I will deliver. But not sure I can do justice before heading out of town. If not I will provide them next week upon my return.

          One for the Middle East mess and one for the where do we go.

          The second is of course the bigger discussion I hope more folks on this site start participating in.

          For now, I am personally not convinced there isn’t a winning strategy with regard to Afghanistan. But if history does in fact reveal anything to us, then it looks like we are on the wrong path. Only two forces have been successful in that region. Alexander and Kahn. Their methods of waging war there were very similar and far from what we are doing, if you know what I mean.

          At the same time, neither Alexander or Kahn had to contend with the Islamic factor and its potential unifying affect among many tribes and peoples of the region.

          As I have written here before, all evidence I can find indicates that this part of the world is primarily TRIBAL in nature. Nobody can impose a strong centralized, aka federal, govt upon the tribes without getting serious blow back. Or, by being extremely brutal (aka Taliban). It seems to me that we are working against ourselves by befriending the local tribes and also supporting the federal govt initiatives. Of course if we only support the tribes we could find ourselves fighting against ourselves, as one US tribe turns against another US tribe.

          One important factor which I think needs addressed first is to determine whether the Taliban is our enemy or poses a threat in the immediate and mid term. If so then we need a strategy to BEAT THEM NOW. If not then negotiate with them to assure Al Quida never comes back and they will not support such a group again. Part of this evaluation must include the poppy fields and the money they generate for Al Quida and similar groups.

          The next factor we need to consider is those who are trying to use Islam to establish a new Caliphate. We can not ignore this apparent reality, just because most Muslims are peace loving people. So are most Americans yet our govt constantly wages war against many others in the world. We need to isolate those that want global jihad from those that want to be left alone.

          Gotta run some errands and will try to get back to this before heading out.

          Hows was your hunting trip by the way?

          JAC

          • Common Man says:

            JAC;

            Hunting trip was great although I am at 0 on the Buck pole, but alas that is why they call it hunting.

            Headed out again this Friday to fish and hunt. Did manage a few days north on the river chasing Kings and Chinook, brought a few home for the freezer.

            Closing up the northern cottage this weekend, at least removing the pier, boats and ramps. Winter looks to be a bitch here in Michigan this year. At least according to the Farmers Almanac.

            Have fun on the water and remeber to take pictures so that everyone knows your not lying.

            CM

            • Common Man:

              Where are you located at in MI? I live in the Cadillac area.

              • Common Man says:

                Birdman;

                Home is Oxford/Lake Orion area and the cottage is in Lake City. Been to Cadillac many times. I am sure you have been to the Tip-up Town a few times.

                I have spent a great many hours wading the PM, and various branches of the Manistee and Muskegon and have been fortunate to land a few kings, Coho and steelhead.

                BTW; If you know anyone looking to lease their land for next years deer season please let me know.

                CM

              • I’m sure you’ve been to Bear Creek and/or Tippy Dam. It’s probably good this time of the year for salmon, especially since it’s been cold. The salmon are probably running. I may try to go there this week.

  8. USW: I’m with you on unleashing the dogs (once you make a commitment to go to war, you go to war — or go Roman, so to speak) but it has been 8 years now and countless political screwups (from both parties) and it’s time to take option 2 and have done with it.

    I’ll use one of your arguments as one argument for leaving:

    “They are laying on the ground taking aim. On each side of them, an inch from their arm is a woman sitting their as a shield, not held there as a captive. She is doing it because she wants to do it. Sitting on his back is a little boy, maybe 8 years old, further voluntary protection. See these guys know that Americans don’t like shooting women and children. So they surround themselves with them, knowing we won’t shoot. There are dozens of these rifleman. They are throwing rounds at you like mad. You can move. You can’t retreat. Now you are faced with a decision. What would you do?”

    The above suggests to me we’re wasting lives, money and time fighting for people who want nothing to do with us. So, we pack up and leave. There is no avoiding collateral damage in war and the ony way to win a war in that terrain against that many people (never mind the millions of others willing to cross the border on their behalf) is to nuke them (or some such insanity). It isn’t going to happen. It shouldn’t happen. We should leave.

    Obama used Afghanistan to get elected. Now he’s cornered himself (and all of us). It is a disaster of epic proportion and it isn’t going to end until he’s facing problems in the next presidential polls (why he arranged to leave Iran the year before the next presidential election). It is nothing short of our war with Iraq (which I originally supported and now believe was criminal). Staying in both or either place another minute is criminal (to the United States citizens) and not because it is breeding new terrorists (those guys aren’t going to like us no matter what we do). It is criminal because of the waste of American lives and money.

  9. Common Man says:

    All;

    Speaking as a father who watched his 18 year old son walk off his High School graduation stage and get into the car of his Recruiting Sargent, travel to Ft. Benning for boot, transfer to Ft. Sam Houston for AIT and then join the 3rd ID in Kuwait in late January 2003, I can say that both efforts in Afganistan and Iraq seem fruitless and futile; especially considering those in office today.

    Both my son and nephew, who both spent two tours in Iraq, will tell you that we are wasting our time given the overall approach. Neither of them thought it made much sense to conduct patrols each day being restricted to certain “rules of engagement” in order to win hearts and minds. IED’s, snipers, hostile natives, and 14 hour patrols didn’t seem to accomplish much more than getting Bradley’s blown up and soldiers killed or wounded. Now don’t get me wrong the Army’s 3rd ID accomplished the tasks of kicking butt, however ‘hearts and minds’ are still as hateful today as they were in the beginning.

    I can’t say much relative to Afganistan, although when my neighbours son returns along with the rest of the 10th mountain I am sure he will have a like oppinion of Afganistan.

    It is time that we as a country pull in the riens and get our noses out of other country’s affairs; we have enough things to deal with here at home. Now having said that I am also one that would promote the idea that should we be attacked we retaliate with extreme prejudice. It’s a lot like Sean Connery said in the movie “Untouchables”. “The other guy uses a knife, you use a gun, they put one of yours in the hospital, you put one of theirs in the morgue”

    Given the fact that we are using war to convey the ideal of ‘winning hearts and minds’ seems rather sick to me.

    I did notice the patch on the General’s left shoulder, and have an infinite amount of respect for what it took to get that patch. I have met Rangers, as well as Special Op’s and they are the best of the best; although I have known a few Seals and Marine Recon that are kick ass as well. I wonder though how much politics go into gaining those stars, and if that requires more politics than accomplishments. (USW, D-13 please enlighten me)

    Eisenhower pulled off a successful D-Day because he had supreme command. Hitler lost because he scattered his Generals authority and refused to allow them to have all the information.

    Are our commanding officers given ALL the information, or are they too provided with only some of the critical data??????

    Given the current US crisis, deciding to “kick ass” would most likely further our economic issues…Yes? Although, WWII stimulated a downed economy and resulted in a long time prosperous society, but it cost a great deal of lives; maybe to many.

    I vote we pull out and focus on the home front. Let those countries figure out what they want and how they are going to go about getting there.

    CM

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      CM – thanks for the perspective – would you ‘re-invest’ some of the war $$$ into bettering our intel capability (e.g. NSA, NRO, DISA, CIA)?

      • Common Man says:

        RAy;

        I am not sure, because I don’t have any proof that those institutions are free of corruption.

        I have become very, very tired of the lies, shell games, finger pointing, hood-winking and overall piss-ass mentality of any and all those who stand up and tell me “I am from the governemnt and I want to help”.

        I have read enough clandestin based novels in my time to know that what goes on in those institutions is rarely made public. I am not sure where they even get the funds to do some of the things they do.

        Is the Patriot Act something we should use “war $$$” to sustain?

        Do we continue to put spy satellites in our atmosphere to be used accordingly?

        Do we use “war $$$” to fund the training of spies and operatives whose charter is to stick their noses into other countries affairs?

        How about we stop the parade of illegal aliens?

        How about we use the “war $$$” to restructure a failing school system?

        How many High School graduates could go to a respectable college for what we spent in Iraq in just one year?

        How much good could an organization like the Red Cross do with the same amount of money?

        How much could medical science benefit the world by investing some of those dollars in furthering cancer research?

        And even though it sounds a bit like a socialist, how about we divide up the “war dollars” spent just last year equally among US Citizens?

        Bottom line: We need to leave both countries and leave them to their own demise or development.

        CM

        • Ray Hawkins says:

          CM – sorry – I meant more so defend the home turf and make damn sure we have better insight into what the bad guys are planning before they can execute again. Your points are well taken though.

        • bottom line says:

          “Bottom line: We need to leave both countries and leave them to their own demise or development.” – CM

          I don’t necessarily argue against that. My concern is that if we just pack up and leave(not that I think that’s a bad idea), We will only have accomplished pissing them off and not taking them out. It would be like getting into a fist fight and saying nevermind right in the middle of it. Try that and see what happens. You’re not just gonna stop a fight. The best way to stop a fight is to finish it.

          • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

            It takes a lot of brass to finish a fight.

            It takes even more brass to stop the fight, admit that you shouldn’t have started it in the first place, and go home.

            There is a lot of debate as to whether we started the fights in Iraq or Afghanistan, but logically there are only 2 courses of action.

            Decisively finish the fight, or just go home.

  10. Common Man says:

    It is probably a item better suited for “open mic”, but given we are all looking at ways to battle the regime I thought this would be eye opening.

    FYI: And I no longer care whether someone is a Dem or Rep, because if they are in government today they are part of the problem.

    First Lady Requires More Than Twenty Attendants

     Dr. Paul L. Williams

    “In my own life, in my own small way, I have tried to give back to this country that has given me so much,” she said. “See, that’s why I left a job at a big law firm for a career in public service, ” Michelle Obama

    No, Michele Obama does not get paid to serve as the First Lady and she doesn’t perform any official duties. But this hasn’t deterred her from hiring an unprecedented number of staffers to cater to her every whim and to satisfy her every request in the midst of the Great Recession. Just think Mary Lincoln was taken to task for purchasing china for the White House during the Civil War. And Mamie Eisenhower had to shell out the salary for her personal secretary..

    How things have changed! If you’re one of the tens of millions of Americans facing certain destitution, earning less than subsistence wages stocking the shelves at Wal-Mart or serving up McDonald cheeseburgers, prepare to scream and then come to realize that the benefit package for these servants of Miz Michelle are the same as members of the national security and defense departments and the bill for these assorted lackeys is paid by John Q. Public:

    1. $172,2000 – Sher, Susan (Chief Of Staff)
    2. $140,000 – Frye, Jocelyn C. (Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Policy And Projects For The First Lady)
    3. $113,000 – Rogers, Desiree G. (Special Assistant to the President and White House Social Secretary)
    4. $102,000 – Johnston, Camille Y. (Special Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the First Lady)
    5. $100,000 – Winter, Melissa E. (Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
    6. $90,000 – Medina , David S. (Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
    7. $84,000 – Lelyveld, Catherine M. (Director and Press Secretary to the First Lady)
    8. $75,000 – Starkey, Frances M. (Director of Scheduling and Advance for the First Lady)
    9. $70,000 – Sanders, Trooper (Deputy Director of Policy and Projects for the First Lady)
    10. $65,000 – Burnough, Erinn J. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
    11.. $64,000 – Reinstein, Joseph B. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
    12. $62,000 – Goodman, Jennifer R. (Deputy Director of Scheduling and Events Coordinator For The First Lady)
    13. $60,000 – Fitts, Alan O. (Deputy Director of Advance and Trip Director for the First Lady)
    14. $57,500 – Lewis, Dana M. (Special Assistant and Personal Aide to the First Lady)
    15. $52,500 – Mustaphi, Semonti M. (Associate Director and Deputy Press Secretary To The First Lady)
    16. $50,000 – Jarvis, Kristen E. (Special Assistant for Scheduling and Traveling Aide To The First Lady)
    17.. $45,000 – Lechtenberg, Tyler A. (Associate Director of Correspondence For The First Lady)
    18. $43,000 – Tubman, Samantha (Deputy Associate Director, Social Office)
    19. $40,000 – Boswell, Joseph J. (Executive Assistant to the Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
    20. $36,000 – Armbruster, Sally M. (Staff Assistant to the Social Secretary)
    21. $35,000 – Bookey, Natalie (Staff Assistant)
    22. $35,000 – Jackson, Deilia A. (Deputy Associate Director of Correspondence for the First Lady)

    There has NEVER been anyone in the White House at any time who has created such an army of staffers whose sole duties are the facilitation of the First Lady’s social life. One wonders why she needs so much help, at taxpayer expense, when even Hillary, only had three; Jackie Kennedy one; Laura Bush one; and prior to Mamie Eisenhower social help came from the President’s own pocket.

    Note: This does not include makeup artist Ingrid Grimes-Miles, 49, and “First Hairstylist” Johnny Wright, 31, both of whom traveled aboard Air Force One to  Europe .

    Copyright 2009 Canada Free Press.Com
    canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/12652

    Yeh, I know, The Canadian Free Press has to publish this because the USA media is too scared they might be considered racist. Sorry America !

    SICKENING………ISN’T IT

    CM

    • Its good to be the King… or Queen.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      Paul Williams has also been proven to be a liar (and I think we have covered this before) – people like him are what I refer to as the Chappaquiddick-types from the right:

      http://m.factcheck.org/2009/08/michelle-obamas-staff/

      • v. Holland says:

        This subject has been brought up before so I really think we should look at it a different way-not is Michelle Obama guilty of overspending but why are we spending $1,591,000.00 a year for these jobs-are they necessary-by what power do they come up with new job positions -if they are unnecessary who has the power to say NO.

  11. Good article USW and as always, appreciate your insight into this area.

    At one time I would’ve chosen option one; now I lean toward two. My concern is that it is now a political decision vs. a war strategy decision. Taking your time to make the right decision might sound smart, but come on, Afganistan was on the menu from day one of the campaign, to the election which was almost one year ago. A whole lot of other crap has been shoved at us in that time.

    I don’t trust this group in the Whitehouse and we’ve seen actions that might indicate their anti-military feelings. Remember early on when BO wanted veterans to pay for their own insurance to cover injuries they’ve received in fighting for their country? It went away quickly but he was amazed at the response? I want a CIC that will protect country and when military are in place to do that, want him to fully support that military. I just don’t get that read with this CIC.

  12. Ray Hawkins says:

    CM – here is something equally reprehensible – know how everyone is calling for investigation in to Acorn and how the entire organization has been indicted for giving advise to a supposed hooker and pimp on evading the IRS? I think its great how esteemed Congress-folk like David Vitter champion this cause.

    Ooops – is that the same David Vitter who couldn’t keep his little vitter out of a bunch of hookers he himself was entangled with? Gotta love the hypocrisy.

    http://www.citizensforethics.org/node/42572

    • No Ray I hate the hypocrisy shown by all in Washington, they all have their grubby hands in the immoral cookie jar. For everyone that is caught, there are 10 more with a hidden dirty little secret. Get him and anyone else that can be exposed. I am tired of both sides trying to make 2 wrongs into a right. Be gone with the whole bunch.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      Ray’s INCORRECT conclusion:

      Because Vitter is a hypocrite ACORN is ok.

      The CORRECT conclusion:

      BOTH Vitter and ACORN should never be seen or heard from again.

      • Ray Hawkins says:

        Peter – cannot go a day w/o picking a fight eh? I conclude nothing relative to Acorn. There was an article in the local paper regarding how shafted the local Acorn folks feel with what has happened. The name is drug through the mud to appease the bloodlust of a few – their mojo is helping people – nothing to do with politics. I’ll take your derisive ‘never be heard from again’ and suggest that maybe the ‘clean’ ones spin off and fly their own banner lest the Acorn name be continued as a misguided epithet.

        Vitter – the actions of one speak for one – he should have resigned a while ago.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          Ray,

          If there are those in ACORN that truly wish to help the poor and that kind of thing, more power to them. I am sure that there are probably some people like that that do actually exist within that organization.

          If they wish to spin off, and form a morally based organization to help the poor and minorities, I say they should go for it.

          My main point was actually that a lot of us (sometimes myself included) tend to use the hypocrisy of one side to justify equally reprehensible bullshit from the other side.

          In reality, bullshit should be tolerated from NEITHER side, and should be banished and never heard from again. That was what I was trying to point out.

          A hypocrite on one side does not justify a hypocrite on the other side.

          A bad organization with bad founders and bad ideals is not justified by some good people in it that actually want to do some good. (And I don’t just mean ACORN here, there are plenty of organizations on BOTH sides that this could be applied to).

  13. Good morning. You know I will not leave this one untouched. Going to lunch…have the all you can eat salad and soup, drink a gallon of Dr Pepper…then I will respond.

    USW, my brother, very good insight and one that most will not “feel”. Thank you for that. And, as to working for a living….remember, I was an enlisted man for four years before becoming an officer. Pulled KP in Hell’s Kitchen at Fort Benning before it was a TV show, while waiting to jump out of perfectly good airplanes…So, no offense taken at all. However, I will tell it like it is this time since you opened the door. I don’t think that I will get through to BF or Ray or some that think like them, although I hold out for Ray, but I will be honest and not pull punches in the assessment..which will also surprise a few who think that I am the “damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead” kind. See you this afternoon after I think this through.

    D13

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      D13 – well if that doesn’t feel a little cryptic! 😉

      Am not sure what difficulty you expect getting through to me – I am pretty open minded when it comes to the military. I grew up around it and Mom/Dad working entire lives for DoD – I have more respect for those who wear the uniform then you could imagine!

      Thanks – look forward to your posting.

      • 🙂 Hi Ray? Cryptic? No, Ray…I am quite sure of your respect of our armed forces and the uniform….I was referring to political side that you and I have differed on but I really do not think we differ that much…that is why the hope…LOL.

        However, I am writing now, full of Toscana Soup (potato and sausage w spinach) and Salad from Olive Garden and 2 gallons of DP.

  14. Common Man says:

    Everyone;

    This was sent by my beloved sister… watched it twice and I cried with enlightenment. For those who don’t believe…think or don’t, but nevertheless it is warming:

    Darn; I apparently don’t know or can’t copy and paste so it is a link. Please do yourselves a great favor and type it into your browser it is well worth it.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rLQzdlpUinc&annotation_id=annotation_497931&feature=iv

    Peace to all

    CM

  15. Hi Everyone

    I would like to say, that I agree with Common Man, why, because my son also did 2 tours in Iraq when he was in the Marines. He was with the 1/4 unit, and while there was in Najaf back in 2004-2005 but stationed in Dewanynieah, or however you spell it. He too lost about 5 buddies there, and he also said it’s time for them people to pick up the reins, that we’ve been there too long. He doesn’t talk too much about it, some things he will, and some he won’t talk about because of the stuff he has seen there.

    If you go to you tube, and click on the 1/4 video, it’s what he and this SGT Chapman put together, he also at the end, put the pictures with a song called Wake Me When September Is Gone. It has quite a few pictures to it, they go by kind of fast, but you’ll get the general idea.

    How long will this go on? To hear Obama talk, he was going to pull them out right away, now He’s changed his mind. The same with Iraq, isn’t it time for those people to start taking control of their own country. Every time I hear more of our people getting killed there, it just makes my heart sink a little further. Just like with the 8 that have been killed over the past few days, it upsets me to think that there will be more, and for what? I too think it’s time to bring our guys home.

    That’s all I have to say on that.

    Hope all has a good day.

    Judy

  16. ora pro nobis*

    *Pray for us (because it is the only hope left)

    The US began an immoral war – and like all things immoral – it will end badly.

    ….more to follow….

  17. USWep

    First, you start off complaining about the “ghastly” Taliban and their form of capital punishment and ‘honor’

    …then go right into why you believe slaughter thousands of innocent people is a righteous response!

    On Saturday, November 17th, US bombs killed two entire families — one of 16 members and the other of 14 — perished, together in the same house.19

    On the same day, bomb strikes in Khanabad near Kunduz, killed 100 people. A refugee, Mohammed Rasul, recounts himself burying 11 people, pulled out of ruins there

    That’s your understanding of ‘honor’?

    Slaughtering from 50,000 feet?

    Disgusting, sir.

    http://cursor.org/stories/civilian_deaths.htm

    • That would be a great cherry picking of my statements and a mischaracterization of my position. As I stated, I hate war. I want none of it. But if it has to be fought, you don’t ask our boys to go into battle with their safety on. I, at no point, stated that my understanding of honor was killing innocent people. I stated that it was the inevitable result of war. I did not call it righteous.

      And as food for thought, perhaps you need to re-assess your definition of innocent. Why don’t you answer my “what would you do” question. Critiquing a soldier’s view of war is easy. Making those decisions when you are the soldier is a bit more difficult.

      Perhaps you should note that I preferred option 2.

      • Sir,

        You’re obvious characterizations of the Taliban was not by accident – since (as far as I know) only you could insert those pictures and captions into your post.

        You attempted to emotionalize and justify your arguments based on some despicable actions of the Taliban.

        However, you failed to do the same to despicable actions of the USA you claimed were in response to such despicable actions of the Taliban!

        My definition of ‘innocent’ is static and does not change because they speak a different language, believe with a different religion, live on different ground, or wear different clothes.

        I fear others depend their definitions on such things.

        • Why don’t you answer my “what would you do” question

          Very obviously, my “boys” wouldn’t be there in the first place having to make such decisions.

          It is an American mental sickness to select use of war and violence so quickly.

          War is the USA’s first option to international problems on small nations.

          • That is a cop out answer…you would allow no such thing as an answer to any of your questions…

            • Terry

              I sure do!

              If you read anything from me, the premise of argument is core!!

              USWep’s premise is that -by some act of utter stupidity- I have put into harm’s way my “brothers in arms”.

              I am not stupid.

              I would not have put my brothers-in-arms into such a situation of being on the ‘wrong side’ of legitimacy.

              • I still see it as a cop out…if “your boys” were in such a position is how the question was posed. If you cannot answer without breaching your coveted moral position, then simply say so. By taking the position of “we would never be there” you only cheapen your stance. IMO of course.

              • Ok, Terry, answer this scenario for me, first.

                Ok, Terry, answer this scenario for me, first.

                You’ve been convicted of incest, rape and murder of your sister/daughter/mother and you’re on the run. You are stopped by the police and you run into a house and hold the people their hostage with a gun to their head.

                The police do not give you the escape car you demand – do you shoot your hostages?

                …let’s see how YOU handle a ridiculous premise – no cop out now!

              • IF that were to ever happen, I would have already killed myself ( I could not live wth that shame, nor would I want anyone to have to deal with it any longer)…no cop out here…ball is in your court again…What would you do?

              • I wouldn’t kill anyone to start with.

              • I wouldn’t comitt the crimes to start with – to be more accurate.

  18. bottom line says:

    Like heavy metal songs ’bout war?

    “WAR ENSEMBLE” – Slayer – Seasons In The Abyss – 1990

    Propaganda death ensemble
    Burial to be
    Corpses rotting through the night
    In blood laced misery
    Scorched earth the policy
    The reason for the singe
    The pendulum it shaves the blade
    The strafing air blood raid

    Infiltration push reserves
    Encircle the front llines
    Supreme art of strategy
    Playing on the minds
    Bombard till submission
    Take all to their graves
    Indication of triumph
    The number that are dead

    Chorus
    Sport the war, war support
    The sport is war, total war
    When victorys a massacre
    The final swing is not a drill
    Its how many people I can kill

    Chorus

    Be dead friend from abve
    When darkness falls
    Descend into my sights
    Your fallen walls
    Spearhead break through the lines
    Flanked all around
    Soldiers of attrition
    Forward their ground
    Gregime prophetic age
    Old in its time
    Flowing veins run on through
    Deep in the rhine
    Center of the web
    All battles scored
    What is our war crimes
    (era forever more…war)

    Propaganda war ensemble
    Burial to be
    Bones shining in the night
    In blood laced misery
    Campaign of elimination
    Twisted psychology
    When victory is to survive
    And death is defeat

    Chorus
    Sport the war, war support
    The sport is total war
    When victorys a massacre
    When victory is survival
    When this end is a slaughter
    The final swing is not a drill
    Its how many people I can kill

    • Dry your eyes
      Dry your eyes
      Dry your eyes
      Dry your eyes
      Dry your eyes
      And quietly bear this pain with pride,
      For heaven shall remember the silent and the brave.
      And promise me, they will never see
      the fear within our eyes. (my eyes are closed)
      For we will give strength to those who still remain.

      So bury fear, while fate draws near
      And hide the signs of pain.
      With noble acts
      The bravest souls endure,
      the heart�s remains.

      Discard regret,
      That in this debt
      A better world is made
      And children of a newer day might remember
      And avoid our fate.

      I waited all day in the pouring rain,
      But nobody came,
      No nobody came.

      (Prepare for battle)

      And in the fury of this darkest hour
      we will be your light
      you’ve asked me for my sacrifice
      and I am Winter born
      without denying, a faith is come
      that I have never known
      I hear the angels call my name
      and I am Winter born

      Hold your head up high
      For there is no greater love
      Think of the faces of the people you defend
      And promise me, they will never see
      The tears within our eyes (My eyes are closed)
      Although we are men with mortal sins,
      Angels never cry

      So bury fear for fate draws near
      And hide the signs of pain
      With noble acts, the bravest souls
      Endure the heart’s remains

      Discard regret,
      That in this debt
      A better world is made
      That children of a newer day might remember, and avoid our fate.

      (prepare for battle)

      And in the fury of this darkest hour
      We will be your light
      You’ve asked me for my sacrifice
      And I am Winter born
      Without denying, a faith in God
      That I have never known
      I hear the angels call my name
      And I am Winter born

      And in the fury of this darkest hour
      I will be your light
      A lifetime for this destiny
      For I am winter born
      And in this moment…
      I will not run, it is my place to stand
      We few shall carry hope
      Within our bloodied hands

      And in our Dying
      We’re more alive- than we have ever been
      I’ve lived for these few seconds
      For I am Winter born

      And in the fury of this darkest hour
      We will be the light
      You’ve asked me for my sacrifice
      And I am Winter born
      Without denying, a faith in man
      That I have never known
      I hear the angels call my name
      And I am Winter born

      Within this moment
      I am for you,
      Though better men have failed
      I will give my life for love
      for I am Winter born

      Cruxshadows

  19. Green Day Wake Me Up When September Ends lyrics

    Summer has come and passed
    The innocent can never last
    wake me up when september ends

    like my fathers come to pass
    seven years has gone so fast
    wake me up when september ends

    here comes the rain again
    falling from the stars
    drenched in my pain again
    becoming who we are

    as my memory rests
    but never forgets what I lost
    wake me up when september ends

    summer has come and passed
    the innocent can never last
    wake me up when september ends

    ring out the bells again
    like we did when spring began
    wake me up when september ends

    here comes the rain again
    falling from the stars
    drenched in my pain again
    becoming who we are

    as my memory rests
    but never forgets what I lost
    wake me up when september ends

    Summer has come and passed
    The innocent can never last
    wake me up when september ends

    like my father’s come to pass
    twenty years has gone so fast
    wake me up when september ends
    wake me up when september ends
    wake me up when september ends

    • Judy, I answered your questions on the post from the other day. Not sure if you got them.

      • Hey Charlie

        Yes I saw one of them but haven’t been back, totally forgot to go back and check. I’ll have to do that later, getting ready to leave for work here in few minutes.

        Take Care

        Judy

        • Charlie, I just finished reading your answer, thought I’d do it now instead of waiting. You sound like you’ve had an exciting life as well. Oh, yes I’ve seen Goodfellas, several times, and I love that movie. As for the meatball recipe, I do have, but it never comes out the way Jim’s dad made it, in fact I can never get the sauce to come out like his either. He showed me everything he put into it, but it’s just not the same.

          Don’t know what his secret was, but I still think to this day, he waited until no one was in the room, and he added more to it. LOL

          He told a lot of stories, especially when they came over on the boat and when they landed at Ellis Island and how they all had to look for work. Jim’s dad quit school when he was in the 3rd grade because everybody who could work, did, even him. He also told us the story of when his younger brother died of phenomena when he was I think like 12 or 13. But no time for that one right now, will have to wait.

          Have a good day Charlie.

          Judy

          • Judy, I know the answer to the problem with the “sauce” … it’s gravy! 🙂

            Sauce comes in a jar … i’m trying to educate my wife on this forever (she’s half Italian/half Irish). She says sauce is brown. I tell her “only in Ireland.”

            • No, No, No, sauce is not brown. It has a nice deep dark orange look to it. And it does not come from a jar. That stuff is terrible, cough, cough.

              I make mine with tomato puree, tomato paste, then 2 cans each of water, then I put all my ingredients in it. Won’t give that away here though.Family secret. I let it simmer for at least 7 to 8 hours.

              I had to learn how to cook Italian if I wanted to stay in the family, that was one of the stipulations.

              I also have this special chocolate cake I make like one of the aunts used to make. I am the only one who can make it the way she did. Unfortunately, she and her husband got killed in a car accident back in the 70’s, 3 years after their son did. The ironic thing is, they all got killed in a head on collision driving a Volkswagen. It was one of Jim’s mom’s brothers. Everybody else who tries to make that cake can’t quite seem to make it taste right. Guess I’m the lucky one huh.

  20. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    Let us say that as a child, you are given a game to play.

    The game looks fascinating, and has many complex and seemingly arbitrary rules.

    You begin to play the game with your friends, but you all quickly realize that many of the rules make no sense, and the game has no clear objectives, so there doesn’t seem to be any way to “win” the game.

    Most children would stop playing such a game very quickly.

  21. I prefer Option 2 and pull out now. We’ve been there 8 years and we will not change anything in that country.

    I also suggest pulling out of Europe and NATO. We’ve guarded Europe since WWII and they can do it on their own.

    We may as well get out of Iraq and any other place in the world where we cover their defense.

    All we need to do is maintain a strong Navy and rights to ports around the world so we can respond if necessary.

    We no longer need to protect the world.

  22. USWep

    Re: Taliban and Al Qaeda

    It is technically impossible for Al Qaeda to have committed 9/11. Evidence today points to far deeper and dangerous pockets such perhaps a Mossad and/or ISI (Pakistani Secret Police) operation. This is a whole other thread.

    ——

    The sudden rush to judgment against the Taliban is bizarre.

    First, they have not been implicated whatsoever to any action against USA. Ever.

    So your first argument is wholly faulty.

    Your “research” should have informed you that the Al Qaeda was a CIA creation – so perhaps the first bombs should have been dropped on Langley.

    The US is harboring international terrorists today.

    Are you suggesting that other countries have a right to attack the People of this nation to bring those terrorists to justice – since the US government has prohibited extradition of these terrorists?

    Or is your position regarding the USA simply another example of hypocrisy in action?

    Second, their agreement to hand over Bin Laden (whether or not he was involved) was irrelevant. US assets were far more then capable of taking out him and his followers without any (significant) action against the Taliban. The Taliban had no air force, and their armor was impotent. Further, the location of Bin Laden was far away from the operations of the Taliban – and in the areas of the Northern Alliance who were the enemies of the Taliban!

    Further, detailed in this document,
    http://warincontext.org/category/entities/northern-alliance/

    …the assassination of the leader of the Northern Alliance the day before 9/11 is not a coincidence – since Karzi was his replacement!

    Obviously, taking out the Taliban was for far different reasons than supporting Bin Laden. It was to bring into power Karzi and the Northern Alliance leadership.

    • (Split due to links)
      ————

      For any analysis of Afghanistan must start with the real reason the USA is operating there.

      So let’s present additional facts.

      The US allowed Al Qaeda to escape to Pakistan – purposely.

      See expose in this short video…
      http://www.metacafe.com/watch/455398/taliban_al_qaeda_allowed_to_escape_u_s_pakistan_secret_deal/

      The attacks in Afghanistan were not about 9/11 at all – that was merely a ‘cover’.

      It was to overthrow the government – regime change – (which was repeated in Iraq) to secure a compliant puppet governments.

      If we cannot understand why the invasions were made, we cannot understand why the USA is still fighting – futily – in these countries.

      If we are fooled by the propaganda of “freeing the people” or “attacking terrorists” etc., then understanding why the US and allies are so incredibly unsuccessful will be lost.

      The US is not freeing the people nor attacking terrorists.

      If this was true, the people would be wholly ‘on our side’ – but they are not.

      They are almost all ‘against us’.

      Either you must believe that ‘these people’ are bizarre and do not want to be free and love being slaves OR we are wholly (as a people) misunderstanding what is going on over there.

      • Watched your u tube link…all I can say is interesting and does not match my intel reports…interesting. The reason I would want to know is why? I can see no reason.

        • If Al Qaeda is a CIA outfit….? Would that be a reason?

          • It would not.

            Because the CIA was in fact driving the Afghan war with the special ops folks.

            So why would the CIA be engaged in killing Al Qaeda then let Al Qaeda escape if Al Queda was a total CIA creation?

            It was the CIA that complained about the hold up on finishing the job at Tora Bora. At least the field agents who had been in Afghanistan since the Russian invasion.

            While CIA actions against the Russians may have led to Al Qaeda’s formation, that is not the same as claiming it is a CIA outfit. I want proof of such a claim. Hard evidence, not some inuendo or assumed connections because of what might or might not be read into someones statments.

          • No….Al Qaeda is not a CIA outfit this day.

            • Gentlemen,

              I would be more cautious in defense of the CIA.

              They have no problem setting up insurgencies that on the out side appear to be directly in odds and in combat with USA troops – whilst manipulating behind the scenes a grander strategy.

  23. Good morning, USW.

    I will not waste anyone’s time by debating how to fight a war, especially this one. My eldest just returned from his second tour in Iraq, and my Nephew is on his second tour in Afghanistan. As you read what I am about to write, keep this in mind – also keep in mind that I am a Viet Nam Veteran.

    When we were attacked on 9/11/2001 I knew that those who attacked us had to have the backing and funding that only a national government could provide. As it turned out, that national government resided in Afghanistan – A country and people that we actually helped rid themselves of the Soviets a little more than a decade previous, and this is how they thanked us. Their gratitude was shown in the fact that they provided the training ground and financial backing to those who murdered over three thousand innocent civilians in what I consider the most cowardly attack in modern history. The Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor doesn’t even come close to 9/11/2001.

    When I learned that it was Afghanistan that was behind this, even though the planners were Al Queda, I only had one thought then and I still have that thought today.

    Nuke.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      The only flaw in that assumption is that the country of Afghanistan had anything resembling a centralized and coherent government which could have organized and funded such an operation.

      9/11/2001 did require the backing and funding that only a national government could provide. Afghanistan does not, and did not at that time, possess such a government.

      • Yes it did back then.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          The Taliban may have controlled enough of the country to constitute an actual “government” but that is highly debatable. Many of the regions of the country, even at that time, were controlled by tribal warlords who had nothing to do with the Taliban and did not recognize it as a “government”.

          At best, the Taliban controlled a portion of the country which included the capital, thus giving itself some sort of claim of legitimate government status.

          Did the Taliban have the means to back and fund the 9/11 attacks? If they controlled the opium trade, probably yes. If they got funding from other countries, probably yes.

          I will have to do some research and see exactly what the governmental and financial status of the Taliban was circa 2000 or so, to see whether they had the ability to back and fund such an operation or not.

          Time to try to educate myself a bit more on the subject.

          • Taliban destroyed the Poppy crops – these are religious fanatics and were disgusted by the trade.

            The opium trade was run by the Northern Alliance – which is why after the fall of the Taliban, the opium trade flourished. The same war lords restarted what the Taliban destroyed.

    • G.A.

      You are why I sometimes fear civilization is doomed.

      First, a rush to judgment.

      Second, fooled by propaganda.

      Third, an immediate use of a repugnant, repulsive, revolting, detestable, appalling, execrable, obscene, calamitous, opprobrious weapon on innocent people – men, women and children!

      Ora pro nobis, ioco mortua.

      • bottom line says:

        The use of a repugnant, repulsive, revolting, detestable, appalling, execrable, obscene, calamitous, opprobrious weapon stopped WW2. Many more would have died if Trueman hadn’t been so humane as to incenderate them instead. Bad weapon put to good use.

        • Bottom Line

          That is the most detestable – and much disproven – piece of propaganda in modern history.

          The Japanese were beaten two years before.

          They were running out of all their strategic supplies.

          Japan couldn’t sail a ship without it being sunk.

          They had no oil, ore, and food was dwindling.

          America’s most senior military men, including Dwight Eisenhower, Ernest King, Douglas MacArthur, Chester Nimitz and Carl Spaatz, expressed deep reservations about the bombings – and to say the most, they condemned them as pitiless, spiteful and unnecessary.

          The assessment of Admiral William D. Leahy, Truman’s chief of staff, was typical: “the use of this barbarous weapon at Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in our war against Japan … My own feeling was that in being the first to use it, we had adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians of the Dark Ages. I was not taught to make wars in that fashion, and wars cannot be won by destroying women and children.”

          To use those weapons on innocent people was the greatest crime against humanity.

          • And yet those very men were making preparations for the invasion of Japan itself, where many more women and children would have died.

            • Redleg

              A brain-rattling argument:

              Slaughtering women and children is a good thing to save the women and children from slaughter

              …and the world wonders at the mental disease of America…

              • Its a lesser of two evils argument. At that point we had 3 viable choices 1) blockade Japan, let them starve, 2) invade or 3) drop the bomb. We chose the one that would have provided the least number of casualties, given everything they knew then. Would they have made a different choice if they knew how much damage an atomic would actually do and its after effects? I don’t know. We can always second guess them, and wonder if you would have made a different choice, but to give justice to a critical look at their choice, you must start from where they were, use the facts that they had, and ignore any other facts that they didn’t have. To do anything else just isn’t intellectually honest.

                Given that, what choice would you have made? what are your assumptions leading up to that decision?

              • He would never have had to make a choice…”his boys” would have never been in that position in the first place…

              • bottom line says:

                lol. I always appreciate good sarcasm.

            • Redleg:

              I have no personal knowledge on the details of what was or wasn’t occuring between statesmen at the time. I will share what I do know personally.

              My Uncle was with the 2nd Marines, his first engagement was Tarawa. Where he was assigned to be a Tunnel Rat. He finished the war an alcoholic. Many years later he offered to send my cousin and I to Canada in 69 to keep us out of Viet Nam. Not because the war was wrong, but as he said “no young man should have to witness what war really is”. We of course declined his offer, although his words did cause us to cut back on the “lets kill the commies” rhetoric.

              My Father spent the last two years of that war on a Carrier, dodging the Kamikazis and picking up pieces of his buddies.

              Both of these men were thankful of Mr. Truman’s decision and while he may have had regrets later in life, these two men had NONE, until the day they died.

              In their minds, the bomb probably saved their lives and those of their remaining friends. That was justification enough for them.

              • Hey JAC….tunnel rat, eh. Damn…saw those boys in Nam…tunnel rats. Nothing but a flashlight and a .45. Glad I was 6 feet tall. Short guys were the “rats”.

                When we found a tunnel complex, we actually called in the K-9’s or simply closed them with bombing…but lots of good intel in those tunnels. Even found a bank with tons of Piasters (P’s) in there.

                Hats off to tunnel rats….dangerous game.

              • My dad was Navy…Pacific…made the invasion of Tarawa, Iwo Jima, Okinawa…was an ensign and had a group of LCVP’s that he drove into the beaches to offload those poor guys.

              • Sounds like your Dad, my Uncle and my Dad shared some time together, at least in terms of geography they were in at the same time.

              • D13 and JAC,

                Were either of your dads on Roi-Namor or Kwajalein?

              • Ummm dont think so but will check. He is still alive at 90 and remembers quite well.

              • My Dad was at Wheeler Field, HI on 12/7/41 and later involved in the invasion of Saipan. In ’45 he was state side but would have been back in the Pacific for the invasion had it occured. He lost several friends on the 7th. He never ever had any regrets regarding how the war ended.

              • T Ray….no. I do not know many WWII vets that have any remorse over how the war ended. Most I know cannot still talk about the Japanese although that is dwindling. My dad is 90 and still remembers and still has problems with the Japanese people and culture but that comes from war. No one can speak otherwise if they have not been there.

          • bottom line says:

            He also wrote in his memiors that…”The Japanese were already defeated and ready to surrender because of the effective sea blockade and the successful bombing with conventional weapons…”

            Really? Then why did it take two bombs to convince them, if they were already intent on surrender?

            They weren’t gonna surrender. Yes, they knew the balance had shifted and that they would inevitably lose. But surrender wasn’t the honorable thing to do. It wasn’t even in their vocabulary. The inexplicable lack of reason displayed by the Japanese perplexes me. Only until they realized that we weren’t bullshitting about having more bombs, and that Japan in it’s entirety would be a big scortch mark, did they surrender.

            Keep in mind that any pre-hiroshima talk about surrender by the Japanese is unsubstantial untrustworthy bullshit. They had Kichisaburō Nomura(ambassador to the United States) negotiating peace with the U.S. at the same time they were attacking Pearl Harbor. The surender negotiations that Adm. Leahy wrote about, were probably another trick. It would be nieve to think otherwise. Actions speak louder than words.

            A point to your favor:
            Trueman was a very moral and religious man. When the park rangers came to evacuate him from his cabin home near Mt. St. Helens, He refused to leave. They kept comming by trying to convince him to evacuate. He refused. He knew he was gonna die. I almost think it was because he felt really shitty ’bout using the bomb. Maybe he knew something that we don’t. Maybe I’m wrong and he knew it was the wrong thing to do. Of course, wrong or right, how do you nuke 200 k people and not feel bad?

            • bottom line

              Really? Then why did it take two bombs to convince them, if they were already intent on surrender?

              Use logic, sir.

              Perhaps it didn’t need the bombs at all – and they were trying to surrender – but the Allies refused to accept it!

              The Japanese were trying to surrender to the Allies as far back as 1943.

              The Allies, however, at Potsdam, created the doctrine of “Unconditional Surrender” – an aberration in of itself, by the way.

              The Japanese had but one condition – sanctity of the Emperor. It was refused.

              After the bombs were dropped, the Allies demanded surrender.

              Guess what the Japanese said?
              Sure, on one condition – sanctity of the Emperor.

              MacArthur understood that the entire nation would be consumed before the Japanese confounded the Emperor.

              So he accepted the condition.

              Imagine – 2 years of war for no reason.

              The inexplicable lack of reason displayed by the Japanese perplexes me. Only until they realized that we weren’t bullshitting about having more bombs, and that Japan in it’s entirety would be a big scortch mark, did they surrender.

              Review your perplexing reasons. The Japanese are not a strange people. Therefore, there is more behind the story then what school taught you

              They had Kichisaburō Nomura(ambassador to the United States) negotiating peace with the U.S. at the same time they were attacking Pearl Harbor.

              You do not have the full story.

              The US Secretary of State had refused to see the Japanese Ambassador repeatedly in the days prior to Dec. 7th – on purpose.

              The SoS knew the Japanese had to commit to action at some point.

              The surender negotiations that Adm. Leahy wrote about, were probably another trick.

              Yeah, sure.

              Starving, out of resources, and attacked by Allies and then invaded by Russia … the Japanese had a “big trick” up their sleeves and were waiting for the exact right moment to spring it!

              Egads, man!

              Of course, wrong or right, how do you nuke 200 k people and not feel bad?

              I don’t know nor will I know. I simply would not put myself into that position to find out.

              • BF said:
                “After the bombs were dropped, the Allies demanded surrender.
                Guess what the Japanese said?
                Sure, on one condition – sanctity of the Emperor.
                MacArthur understood that the entire nation would be consumed before the Japanese confounded the Emperor.”

                Incorrect sir, after the US dropped 2 bombs and Russia invaded, Emperor Hirohito accepted the Potsdam Declaration of surrender with the caveat that he remain in power. Foreign Minister Suzuki sent a telegram that tried to get the allied forces to guarantee the fate of the Emperor if they accepted the Potsdam Declaration; to which they received this answer “From the moment of surrender the authority of the Emperor and the Japanese government to rule the state shall be subject to the Supreme Commander of the Allied powers who will take such steps as he deems proper to effectuate the surrender terms. …The ultimate form of government of Japan shall, in accordance with the Potsdam Declaration, be established by the freely expressed will of the Japanese people”.
                Douglas MacArthur had no say in the surrender of Japan but after he was named the Supreme Commander of the occupation he made the decision to retain the Emperor.

              • Your clarification on MacArthur is minor – but correct.

                He had made clear his position to the US Government – that Japan would be uncontrollable should the Emperor be deposed.

              • bottom line says:

                “The Allies, however, at Potsdam, created the doctrine of “Unconditional Surrender” – an aberration in of itself, by the way”- BF

                An aberration out of necessity. We were stretched pretty thin. They weren’t gonna surrender unless there were conditions. We weren’t in the position to concede to their conditions. I think it had a bit to do with piece of mind that they were truely down for the count for good. No angles.

                The threat of invasion by Russia did indeed weigh on Japan’s decision. Only because it was better to surrender to the U.S., rather than end up split in two like Germany.

                They were waiting to see how things played out, while also trying to save face and get whatever they could out of any deals. They knew what the threat was but still tried to push their luck. They should have just accepted the offer.

                Review your perplexing reasons. The Japanese are not a strange people. Therefore, there is more behind the story then what school taught you.- BF

                Oh c’mon BF. School didn’t teach me? I KNOW you can do much better than that.

                “The Japanese had but one condition – sanctity of the Emperor. It was refused.

                After the bombs were dropped, the Allies demanded surrender.

                Guess what the Japanese said?
                Sure, on one condition – sanctity of the Emperor.

                MacArthur understood that the entire nation would be consumed before the Japanese confounded the Emperor.

                So he accepted the condition.” – BF

                Perhaps I am evil, but I would have responded by dropping #3 on Tokyo with the word “UNCONDITIONAL” painted on it.

                You do not have the full story.

                The US Secretary of State had refused to see the Japanese Ambassador repeatedly in the days prior to Dec. 7th – on purpose.

                The SoS knew the Japanese had to commit to action at some point. – BF

                Look back a little further than a week. In the decades leading up to Pearl harbor, Japan had become desperate. They were at war with China and had little oil. Stalin’s forces were an ever growing threat. Britain had dumped them for us. They were isolated and desperate. We made countless offers to them in regards to the oil embargo, as FDR was against it in the first place. He knew it could start a war. He was trying to go easy on them for the sole purpose of avoiding war. They refused. When our carriers were moved to Hawaii from San Diego, Japan took this as a threat and decided to pre-emptively attack Pearl Harbor. Their bad. They made a cricial error in judgement.

                “Yeah, sure.

                Starving, out of resources, and attacked by Allies and then invaded by Russia … the Japanese had a “big trick” up their sleeves and were waiting for the exact right moment to spring it!

                Egads, man!” – BF

                Exactly. What better motivation than despiration.

              • So you’re saying that the Japanese government presented terms to the Allies that they woudl e willing to surrender under in August 1943, before the Japanese Army had sufferred a single major defeat? Before Tarawa, Iwo, Tinian, Saipan, and the Phillippenes? Right safter the Japanese Army had had significant success in China and India? I’d love to see the evidence for that.

              • Yes, they began peace “feelers” after their devastation at Midway (June, 1942).

                They knew they had no hope against the industrial might of the USA and could not replace the lost carriers.

                Land battles were never an issue for the USA, since Japan was supplied solely by sea.

                The lost of their naval forces at Midway doomed them – and they knew it.

        • “Truman himself eventually regretted his decision.

          In a private letter written just before he left the White House, he referred to the dropping of the bomb as “murder,” and concluded that it “is far worse than gas and biological warfare because it affects the civilian population and murders them wholesale” (see Barton J. Bernstein, “Origins of the U.S. Biological Warfare Program,” in Preventing a Biological Arms Race, MIT Press, 1990; John Denson, “The Hiroshima Myth”; Gary Kohls, “Whitewashing Hiroshima: The Uncritical Glorification of American Militarism”; and Ralph Raico, “Rethinking Churchill,” particularly Part V).”

      • And you call yourself an Anarchist?

  24. You have superior weaponry and training. They have the numbers. When you peer over the windowsill, you see their “snipers”. They are laying on the ground taking aim. On each side of them, an inch from their arm is a woman sitting their as a shield, not held there as a captive. She is doing it because she wants to do it. Sitting on his back is a little boy, maybe 8 years old, further voluntary protection. See these guys know that Americans don’t like shooting women and children. So they surround themselves with them, knowing we won’t shoot. There are dozens of these rifleman. They are throwing rounds at you like mad. You can move. You can’t retreat. Now you are faced with a decision. What would you do?

    The first time I would see this, I would know I am ‘the bad guy’ and they are the ‘good guys’.

    If the PEOPLE are protecting THE FIGHTERS, we are obviously not on the side of the PEOPLE – but against them.

    If we were the “Good guys” the people would not support the fighters, and the PEOPLE would be actively helping locate and exposing their hiding places.

    But they are not. The PEOPLE are hiding the fighters and helping THEM.

    Bug out time. We are on the wrong side.

    • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

      BF,

      Your assertion that we are the “Bad Guy” IS accurate, PROVIDED that the PEOPLE are letting themselves be used as meat-shields VOLUNTARILY.

      If enemy forces are FORCING women and children to be used as meat-shields, then we would be the Good Guy.

      I do not know, in Afghanistan, if the human shields are there voluntarily, if they are forced to be there, or some combination of the two (I am assuming some may be voluntarily present, but certainly not all of them are, but that is only my assumption).

      Do we have any evidence as to whether the human shields are voluntary participants or are there only because they are forced to be? I would be very interested to see that.

      I will agree for certain that many of the people hide the fighters and also support them, so I would say overall your characterization that the people do not want us there is overall correct.

      • LOI

        The scenario presented is USWep’s – you have a problem with the scenario, challenge him.

        However, as we agree, t many of the people hide the fighters and also support them, so I would say overall your characterization that the people do not want us there.

        • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

          I am not LOI, but that is ok 🙂

          Yes, I agree.. USW made the original assertion that the woman and child are indeed there voluntarily.

          If his scenario is correct, the human shields are there voluntarily, the people hide the soldiers and allow them to integrate into the general populace, and the people support the soldiers, then I don’t see what business we have there.

    • BF:

      “The first time I would see this, I would know I am ‘the bad guy’ and they are the ‘good guys’.”

      That my dear friend would be a most irrational conclusion. For you see they may just believe they are right and you are wrong and thus they support their sniper to the fullest.

      The fact that women and children are allowing themselves to be used as shields is not in and of itself evidence of right or wrong, good guys and bad guys. It can only lead one to conclude that the commitment is strong on their side. For what ever reason they have.

      One needs the entire story to reach good guy vs. bad guy conclusions.

      Hope your weekend was warmer and calmer than mine.
      JAC

      • JAC

        The scenario is not mine – it is USWep’s – if you have a debate about the conditions, ask him.

        If the People I am supposed to be ‘fighting for’ are fighting against me, I can -with good and strong confidence- know I am fighting on the wrong side.

        • Your first mistake is to assume that because they are women and children they are good or right. They very well may not be. Your second is to assume that because they are aligned against the soldier, the soldier is wrong.

          • Yes, I do.

            They are children – only a barbarian can consider them nothing but innocent.

            And yes, if the solider is in their country and the People are fighting that solider – and the soldier’s justification of being there is “for the people” = then that solider is DEAD wrong.

    • Bug out time?

      A agree with the accusations above that you were copping out on the answer, perhaps because you don’t have an answer that really addresses the problem while maintaining your moral high ground.

      Re-read the scenario. You cannot retreat. You can shoot or die. You are correct. It is my scenario. If you want to attempt to answer it, stay within the bounds of the situation. Otherwise, simply admit that there is no good answer, and thus admit that the world doesn’t fit into the neat little box that you would prefer to place it in.

      • Re-read my answer.

        I wouldn’t be stupid enough to put my troops in that position.

      • (IE: Your premise is faulty)

        • v. Holland says:

          But it is reality-your answer is only okay if you have the power to make all the decisions leading up to the situation and since we all are prisoners of past decisions make though out the history of our country-the soldier doesn’t have that power, he must make decisions based on the reality of this isolated moment in his life -so as a past soldier(I believe you said you were one)or not. What would you do?

          • I’ll tell you what happened to me.

            Before I had to decide whether to drop bombs on children, my career ended due to a biological quirk in my heart.

            Had I not had the heart I have, I most likely would have been in a position where I probably would have had to drop bombs on kids – or engage ‘my enemy’ who was trying to stop me from killing his kids.

            I would not drop my bombs on the innocent, nor would I fire upon a man who was defending his home from my invasion.

            And, yep, I’d probably be killed, or captured, or surviving all of that – arrested and jailed by the by my own military.

            But no children would have died by my hand. That I could not live with.

            So, my life was saved by my heart. Pun intended.

            • v. Holland says:

              That is an answer I can respect.

              I have been thinking about this question and I ask you to contemplate a somewhat different mind frame-suppose that the man having to make this decision believes that his reason for being there is just and that he decides to fight for his survival and a child is killed. Who’s fault is it that the child was killed-the soldier fighting for his life and the life of the other people fighting with him or the man who decided to use the child as a shield?

              • Who’s at fault?

                Who can judge?

                I cannot judge a man fighting for his life in such a circumstance.

                This is, of course, wholly different than entering the fight without such care or concern about the civilians which seems to be a common attitude.

                Indeed, I would expect that given the orders of magnitude military capability, that the troops would easily out-wait the enemy.

              • v. Holland says:

                Personally I have no problem deciding who is at fault-Usually a man protecting his home or trying to stop someone from killing his children stand in front of said children not behind them-Whether or not we should be fighting in this war is an important question but it is a question that should be answered before we go to war but once we are there our boys and girls(men and women) in this situation seem to have two choices 1. Die 2. or fight with the knowledge that they may kill a child. Asking them to just put down their weapons and die because the people they are fighting with use reprehensible tactics is unreasonable. So I say and others on here have said, once our people have been sent to fight, let them fight, don’t put unreasonable limits on their ability to protect their lives. I read the posts by people who were soldiers and I don’t believe that they go in there without regard for civilian life, they just acknowledge that some times it is unavoidable.

              • V. Holland

                Until those that pull the trigger begin to refuse to pull the trigger – the guns and the killing will continue.

                The decisions of war are made by those who do not fight.

                If an end to war is to be, the men fighting the war need to stop.

              • Watch a very good movie, Joyeux Noël)

                It is based on an accumulation of real events during World War One.

  25. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704471504574447090218534138.html

    This has nothing to do with Afghanistan, for which I apologize. However, if you read this carefully, the new rule proposed by the EPA to regulate CO2 emissions as a “dangerous pollutant” and using the clean air act as justification, actually VIOLATES the clean air act.

    The clean air act REQUIRES that emissions of dangerous pollutants be regulated at 250 tons per year. The carbon rule exempts (at least for now) all sources emitting under 25,000 tons per year.

    Quite an interesting article…

  26. Just about 45 years ago I was stating the same options such as ” S@!t or get off the pot !”

    Then I met a navy pilot (commander??) who told me the reason he reluctantly left the service was the BS from washington. It never changes. They just can’t keep their hands off. Define the objective and let them go.

  27. USW,

    While I agree with much you have written, I would like to “cherry pick” one thing to be disagreeable on. “Nobody fights the 300 pound guy in the corner of the bar who says he just wants to have a drink and be left alone.” You followed about no one would be willing to invade the US, but that is not the same as not being willing to attack the US.

    9/11 was an attack and an act of war. Our response to Afghanistan was appropriate. As a sovereign nation, they are responsible for what transpires within their borders. Was Iraq a mistake? I think not. For that 300lb. guy to be left alone in this world, he must display a willingness to strike back, if attacked. America sent a strong message, that I think Obama was foolish to weaken. It is a good thing to make known to every sheep herder in the world, that if they harbor terrorist that attack the USA, hell will reign down on all, not just the terrorist. Choose your friends wisely. Don’t let them choose your enemies.

    Another problem, America has a historic reputation as seen by other nations as being unwilling to see a fight through to the end. How we end the war in Iraq and Afghanistan will affect how Iran, N. Korea and others deal with us in the future.

    OH mighty Flagster, a question. Afghanistan’s economy is largely based on the Poppy drug trade. Is there a model for improving their economic situation? A different crop base or are there resources they could use to start industrializing? Helping them find such a path might be the answer to the US leaving them better than we found them, and more friendly/stable. One thing that we have seen around the world, capitalism works. Use Russia and China as examples.

    • LOI

      You claim that harboring terrorists is ‘an act of war’?

      Luis Posada Carriles, a former CIA operative and Cuban exile militant, is accused of planning the bombing of a civilian Cuban airliner in 1976. All 73 people onboard the flight from Venezuela to Cuba were killed. In 1985 Posada, who denies any involvement in the bombing, escaped a Venezuelan prison while he was awaiting trial.

      Today he is a free man in the United States. After he was accused of illegally entering the country in 2005 by immigration officials, a U.S. federal judge dismissed the immigration charges against him. Critics of the decision say the U.S. government is inconsistent with its war on terror.

      Therefore, you believe Cuba and Venezuela both would have legitimate cause to attack USA assets at home and abroad – for the act of war – as you claim.

      The reason the USA cannot see a ‘fight to the end’ is because it is fighting for the wrong reasons – there is no logic ‘end’ to mercantilism. You have to keep fighting the locals forever to wrestle from them their property.

      As far as opium trade – is there a model? Sure!

      Leave them alone – if they want to sell opium, let them – as long as the War on Drugs provides a market for their goods – we are subsidizing their economy with doped-up Americans – which is a lot better then subsidizing their economy with productive Americans.

      • PeterB in Indianapolis says:

        In order for mercantilism to properly function there must always be a war against someone or something. Without constant, never-ending war or at the very least threat of war, it just doesn’t work.

        Look at everything from 1939 to 2009. In that 70 year period, have we EVER been free of war or the threat of war for any significant time period?

        By the way, the “War on Drugs” counts as a war… we just fight it in places like Colombia by proxy rather than sending a bunch of our own troops in conspicuously.

        Now ask yourself, how moral is a system which is predicated on always having a war or a threat of war in order to prosper?

        Free market capitalism (which the US does not have and has not had for a LONG TIME) has no such requirement.

        Socialism and Communism also tend to require wars or the threat of wars to keep themselves going, because the allocation of resources is so screwed up and economic calculation is so impossible, that at least a war machine produces the illusion of productivity, even though the products produced are useless to the consumers within the society.

        Any country of course requires defense, and it does take arms and weapons and planes and ships to provide this defense. A free country does not require a continual threat of war in order to exist however.

        • Peter:

          I stongly disagree with your assertion that war is required to support mercantilism. While war has been used, it is possible to support it without military intervention.

          After all, we have economic and trade sanctions, along with our own bundle of federal regulations to enforce its strangle hold.

          Wars do tend to fill the coffers of the bankers who fund both sides however. Especially during the clean up phase afterwards.

          You see it is not the war itself that is so profitable. It is the “normalization” and “nation building” effort that follows.

          A good day to you also my friend.
          JAC

          • JAC

            Today seems to be the day we disagree!

            Mercantilism requires war.

            Economic sanctions are considered acts of war – and are enforced by force of arms.

            Your counter to Peter is the same as someone saying “The law doesn’t force anyone to do something – it is your choice to break it, and then the law uses force!”

            • When objecting to Peter’s claim I was thinking primarily of the “mercantilism” here in the US of A.

              War is not required to create nor maintain such a system internally. All that is needed is govt authority to regulate commerce which acts to defend itself and eventually takes control of the system. Then it uses that system to its advantage.

              Expansion of the same protection overseas is another matter. I am not convinced actual War is required but I concede that sanctions and embargos are at least an act of coersive force and could be viewed as an act of war.

      • bottom line says:

        “as long as the War on Drugs provides a market for their goods” – BF

        Very accurately put BF. The War on Drugs is really War “FOR” Drugs.

      • Damn you Flag! I’m not sure what for, but all the same, damn you.

        “You claim that harboring terrorists is ‘an act of war?” No.

        “Therefore, you believe Cuba and Venezuela both would have legitimate cause to attack USA assets at home and abroad – for the act of war – as you claim.” Tell them to bring it!

        Do you willingly reside in the US? If so, then why? You know of so many atrocities the US is responsible for, how can your ethics allow you to be here raising a family?

        I do not like or condone many actions taken in the name of our country. Nor do I try to make excuses for actions I lack the power to influence. I did put myself out there and request your thoughts
        on their economy, which I think you did a masterful job of twisting in a different direction. Its kinda easy to just sit back and throw rocks, that everything we do is immoral and wrong, go ahead, get personal and tell me my dog is ugly too.

        How about thinking a little about what I was attempting to ask on their economy? I am not really worried about the drug trade. I am thinking that they are an impoverished people, and nothing is happening to change that. The farmers are not getting rich off their drug crops. The villages have the same standard of living as they did a hundred years ago. Even if we were wrong to invade them, can we do no right by trying to put them on a more prosperous path, one less likely to end in future conflicts and where they may have some few positive feelings for the USA?

        Why is Georgia experiencing economic growth while Russia struggles?
        Would a similar model work in Afghanistan? I seek to apply a money talks, and bulldookey walks strategy. If they become more prosperous as individuals, they are less likely to embrace violence.
        Because its bad for business.

        • Life of Illusion

          Damn you Flag! I’m not sure what for, but all the same, damn you.

          I understand. That’s what my wife says occasionally.

          “You claim that harboring terrorists is ‘an act of war?” No.

          “Therefore, you believe Cuba and Venezuela both would have legitimate cause to attack USA assets at home and abroad – for the act of war – as you claim.” Tell them to bring it!

          Ah, so official policy should be hypocrisy?

          That’ll win friends and influence 🙄

          Do you willingly reside in the US? If so, then why? You know of so many atrocities the US is responsible for, how can your ethics allow you to be here raising a family?

          Because the People are nice, but it is the government is evil. Eventually the People will figure that out.

          The government is not raising my family, for that very reason.

          I do not like or condone many actions taken in the name of our country. Nor do I try to make excuses for actions I lack the power to influence.

          You do not lack the power of influence!

          As long as one remains silent – or worse – agree – then it will be bad.

          on their economy, which I think you did a masterful job of twisting in a different direction. Its kinda easy to just sit back and throw rocks, that everything we do is immoral and wrong, go ahead, get personal and tell me my dog is ugly too.

          I didn’t know you had a dog!

          However,

          …I refuse to let anyone get away with moral hypocrisy, immoral barbarianism, and weak justifications to slaughter children.

          …because the future for my child is at stake.

          The villages have the same standard of living as they did a hundred years ago. Even if we were wrong to invade them, can we do no right by trying to put them on a more prosperous path, one less likely to end in future conflicts and where they may have some few positive feelings for the USA?

          You can kick and drag a donkey to water, but unless you want to drown it, it won’t drink.

          They will figure it out for themselves – you’re ancestors did -eventually- so, they will -eventually- too.

          Why is Georgia experiencing economic growth while Russia struggles?

          Because you – with your tax dollars – are funding their ‘growth’.

          It is not indigenous. When the USA falls, so will Georgia -again-

          Would a similar model work in Afghanistan?

          Not even a little bit.

          Afghanstan is very tribal. The largest tribe in the world – Pashtun – and traditionally most politically powerful ethnic group, over 14 million people )extend beyond Afghanistan into Pakistan.

          They are very closed and are very independent.

          Trying to ply them with fiat money will likely get you killed and broke.

          Seek very limited trade – but for what with what?

          God knows….sheep’s milk for LCD TV’s….???

          • bottom line says:

            LOI – “Damn you Flag! I’m not sure what for, but all the same, damn you.”

            BF – I understand. That’s what my wife says occasionally.

            BL – ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!! That’s classic. I love it.

  28. “History teaches that war begins when governments believe the price of aggression is cheap.” – Ronald Reagan

  29. First of all USW….good article and insight. I will have to answer this based on three perspectives. First, as a soldier and that viewpoint and, (2) as an American citizen and a grandfather , and (3) as a man who loves his country and flag more than life itself.

    First…. A soldier’s perspective on the war and the tactics used or not to be used. Your post brought back many memories that I try to forget but are indelibly etched into my mind. Having fought in Vietnam as a member of the 5th Special Forces (Green Beret) assigned to project Omega in the Central Highlands, we quite often found our selves surrounded and outnumbered. So, 100-1…we lived with that constantly. But, as small unit operations, we were able to go into the villages and live with the indigenous Montgnard personnel and learn their values and learn their traditions. I also saw their family values and religious beliefs. I saw the “justice” dispensed by the local Viet Cong under the guidance of the North Vietnamese under the guidance and funding of the then Soviet Union and Chinese Government. I invite everyone to take a hard look at the pictures that you posted. A real hard look because we are faced with the same thing that we were faced with back then. A population that will not stand up and fight for themselves with their hands bound behind their backs and shot in the head. This is what we are fighting and we will not win the hearts and minds of the people in Afghanistan and Iraq because they do not understand our concepts and we do not understand theirs. We will NEVER understand their concepts and beliefs. I also fought in Kuwait and in Afghanistan. If my CIC has determined that we are to be there, then we must fight to win. Win….at all costs. OR GET OUT. Wars of attrition never win and do nothing but isolate us from the rest of the world…to which I do not give a flying damn about anyway. I saw the enemy in Vietnam set up civilian barricades and fire from behind them. I saw whole families stretched and nailed to walls and trees and their skin stripped from them for the flies to eat while they were still alive. I saw the results of beheadings and dismemberment because of a difference in politics. These same atrocities would happen even if we were not there. I saw men die when they would not shoot an enemy soldier carrying a baby for protection.

    In Kuwait, as battalion commander of a tank unit with mech infantry support, we were part of the end run that cut off the highway of retreat from Kuwait City. We over ran positions staffed with Iranian reserves with no rifles and no way to protect themselves. We buried hundreds as we rammed through their barricades…. buried them alive. We found and bypassed execution rings ( Kuwaiti’s that were raped and shot in the desert by the Iraqi invaders and beheaded and stripped naked in the sun to bloat and burst open ). That is Islam, as I knew it in the 90’s. We cut off the highway and were forced to hold fire as the Iraqis were allowed to retreat under a cease fire with their weapons intact and with Kuwaitis strapped to the side of their tanks as “protection” even though they were flying the white flags and their guns in travel lock. Then we found the Kuwaitis later all shot in the head and dismembered at the Kuwait/Iraq border. This is what we were fighting.

    In Afghanistan, reassigned to the Special Operations, we operated in the Taliban areas and witnessed first hand the firing from Mosques and schools behind the children and women. THIS is Islam as I know it. And the people let it happen. There is nothing different from the 70’s to now in the wars that I have been part of. NOTHING IS DIFFERENT. Man’s inhumanity to man is unbelievable. But this is war and war knows no rules…except those practiced by the United States and some allies. The Islamic soldiers (Taliban and Al Qaeda) are no different than the Viet Cong of the 70’s. These “soldiers” are well financed and puppets just as the VC were. I see no difference as I have fought all three. Just as in Vietnam, there were tribes and sects… just as there are in the Persian Gulf regions to Eastern Europe.

    So, as a soldier, if we are to fight a war… then fight. Total and complete war and there are no innocents. Bombing from 50,000 feet or hand to hand in war is no different. Death is on the door step at all times. There is nothing more disheartening to take ground and give it back or to liberate a village and then return to find the villagers shot and dismembered. These are memories that can never be eradicated from the mind’s eye. Obama is the President, like it or not. He is the Commander in Chief. If he, as President, has determined to stay there, then take the gloves off and let us fight and fight to win. But, even if we go in and fight and win…what do we have? A lot of land and people who do not want us there and nothing will change. War is not pretty. It is ugly and I do not know ONE soldier that wants war. The smell of blood, the stench of death, the loss of brothers, and the memories of having to take lives is something that I hope others never have to live with but let us fight or bring us home. He, our President, has generals that know the situation better than him. He needs to listen to them. I agree with USW that the right is incorrect in rushing to any situation without thinking it through and one or two weeks is not rushing anything. However, inaction is worse than the war itself for morale is more powerful than any weapon known to man. Inaction breeds contempt and low morale. This will lead to more deaths than any weapon that can be brought to bear. Make your decision, Mr. President. If we stay….fight to win and do not be the coward that I think you are. If we are not going to fight, then be the decision maker that I do not think you are. Let these poor excuses of countries fend for themselves and do not return no matter the genocide that will follow. But know this….. it is coming to our shores….make no mistake about that. Actually, I fear that it is already here.

    Second, as a grand father and American Citizen, I personally feel that you cannot negotiate any end to Afghanistan nor Iraq. You cannot negotiate with a people that has no concept of life and liberty. But, if you decide to negotiate, do not be cowardly. Do not apologize for anything for we have nothing to apologize for. I do not give a tinker’s damn about what happened 600 years ago, 200 years ago, or 50 years ago. I am concerned about today and the future. I am concerned for my grand children and my children that will have to face the future after I am dead and gone. As my President, you have only one responsibility. PROVIDE FOR THEIR COMMON DEFENSE and not making us like Europe….it is the coward’s way out. You do not have an obligation to the Afghan or Iraqi peoples. You, nor the United States, has NO obligation to the world. Please quit saying that you inherited this from Bush. You inherited nothing from Bush. Black Flag is seldom right, in my opinion, but he is right about one thing…this is not a Bush thing, nor a Clinton thing, nor a Bush 1 thing, nor a Reagan thing….it is decades of policy of the U.S. So, quit the blame game. If it has been determined that our policy is wrong, then change it. No apologies….just change it. But do so from strength. Strength is not capitulation to the world or the United Nations.

    Third, as a man who loves his country more than life itself, please do not give it up. I see nothing wrong with how we got where we are. We did not get to be the biggest and best by being naïve and we are the best. We have our detractors and I have seen nothing positive from our detractors. I have seen, heard, and read platitudes, hyperbole, philosophy, and suggestions as to how bad we are and how good others are and that we are the ones responsible for the world’s problem or that 9-11 was a plausible response to our policies….. and to these people that believe this way….they get a big BULL SHIT from me. To not vote has been depicted as doing something. It is doing nothing and nothing is not something no matter how you wish to spin it. I say, get off your ass and do something like organizing or recruiting people to run for local offices. Get out and organize groups that enforce the laws that are on our books and force the local government to enforce the laws that are on our books. If you do not like our laws, then quit complaining and do something to change them. But do something other than run my country down with pen or mouth. AND this is MY country as it is yours. How does this last paragraph relate to Afghanistan and Iraq? It relates only from the standpoint of policy. IF you feel that we are there and it is wrong, then write or call your congressman or your senator or the President and tell them to get out. QUIT JUSTIFYING the Islamic side and criticizing us. If you adopt the theory that not writing or notifying your representative will do no good because everything is corrupt and then you do nothing to change the corruption, then I suggest that those that believe this are the biggest cowards out there. Face the government and demand accountability. DEMAND IT !!!!!! Get your voice heard. It can be done. It must be done.

    • Hi D13

      You should send that to Obama himself.

      Judy

    • Total and complete war and there are no innocents

      And we call them “barbarians”….

      • Flag, War sucks, period. Noone wants it, noone needs it, but when we are faced with it, we all become barbarians. I think we can agree that being a barbarian is not a fond memory.

        G!

        • Therefore….

          1) Choosing war must never be done except in the most severe, clearest, damnedest possible risk of hell on earth.

          2) Must be fought from the highest moral ground.

          Lest we do otherwise, we doom our children into the hands of barbarians.

          • Just a giggle here.

            2) Must be fought from the highest moral ground.

            War and “highest moral ground” in the same sentence kinda seems strange to me. Can they go together?

            • LOL…only on a blog.

            • Yes, it can – but only if war is the very last resort.

              It can never be if war is the first resort.

              • Doesn’t your words “must be fought” already establish that war is taking place. In what may be rare for me, but I find your response a contradiction. I don’t believe a war can be fought with anything close to “a high moral standard”.

                It would be nice though!!

              • “Must be fought….” if it is forced upon you.

              • Ah but there are always other paths a pacifist can follow including in the end dieing for their unwavering mantra of nonviolence. And then there were none.

              • I’ll back BF on this one. He will defend that he deems the need to. This I do not know, because I do not know him, but my gut feelings work well for me.

                G!

    • Common Man says:

      D13;

      For what you have seen during your time ‘in country’ you have my sincere and heartfelt condolences, as do all those that have experienced war.

      Please let us all know when the Web site is up and functional.

      CM

    • D13,

      A great response. I cannot thank you and every American soldier enough for the sacrifices you have made. The blood of patriots has kept us free.

    • Murphy's Law says:

      D13,

      You had me totally transfixed throughout your post. And I agree with you, Judy- I’d love for Obama himself to see it.

      D13, you obviously live what you believe. And you write damn well, too.

    • Ray Hawkins says:

      D13 – incredible clear-minded perspective. I do wish the CIC could read this.

  30. White House: Leaving Afghanistan not an option

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091005/ap_on_go_pr_wh/us_obama_afghanistan

    Translation:
    When we lose this war, we will lose it badly.

  31. Redleg

    Its a lesser of two evils argument.
    At that point we had 3 viable choices 1) blockade Japan, let them starve, 2) invade or 3) drop the bomb.

    No, sir.

    The Allies could have accepted their surrender.

    Amazing how no one thinks about that one.

    We chose the one that would have provided the least number of casualties, given everything they knew then.
    You hold a terrible belief.

    The dropping of the bomb was not to force Japan to surrender.

    Japan was long done.

    It was to scare Stalin.

    You forget that Russia had 3 million hard-core troops merely 500 miles from Paris – plus another million and half racing down from Siberia into Manchuria.

    Would they have made a different choice if they knew how much damage an atomic would actually do and its after effects?

    They knew. Why do you think they did the tests first?

    Stalin didn’t know. Thus the Japanese were sacrificed.

    Guess what? Stalin wasn’t scared – but he was cautious. He sent out spies trying to find out how many bombs the US had left.

    The US anti-spying tactic worked. The Russians got intelligence from a downed American pilot who had been fed that the US had “hundreds of weapons”.

    Stalin couldn’t confirm the intelligence, but he couldn’t ignore it either. It stayed his hand in Europe.

    I don’t know. We can always second guess them, and wonder if you would have made a different choice, but to give justice to a critical look at their choice, you must start from where they were, use the facts that they had, and ignore any other facts that they didn’t have. To do anything else just isn’t intellectually honest.

    The honest thing was to really study the event, not hold stubbornly to propaganda.

    Given that, what choice would you have made? what are your assumptions leading up to that decision?

    Given that the Japanese were surrendering since 1943 – I would have accepted the surrender as offered – sanctity of the Emperor in place.

    The war would have ended 2 years earlier, saving hundreds of thousands of lives – there would have been no Korean War, no Communist China, no Vietnam War….

    Russia was still entangled with Nazi Germany and the defeat of Japan would have freed all Russian troops.

    Germany would have capitulated to the Allies given the release of a million more troops from the East.

    The war would have ended by early 1944 – before the full effect of the Holocaust and other horrors.

    Imagine – no Cold War, No Iron Curtain, no Holocaust, no Korean War, etc.

    • Wow….you really believe this, don’t you?

      • Woops…have to agree with you on the holocaust

      • D13

        What part of the rest do not agree with?

        • Hey Bf..wassup…..\

          BF says: Imagine – no Cold War, No Iron Curtain, no Holocaust, no Korean War, etc.

          D13 says: Had the war ended in early 1944 (I actually think it could have ended in mid 1943), the only thing I agree with is no Holocaust. I do believe that there would have still been an Iron Curtain, Korea, and Vietnam…

          • Here is why I do not think so.

            1943/1944 – German forces were still east of Minsk.

            A surrender of Japan – and terms with Germany would have kept the Russians out of Poland.

            It may have still created a war with the West – but Russinsa would have had 1,000 miles more to walk – and the West would have had the still-industrial Germany and Italy as allies (and most of Europe free of massive devastation).

            Beyond that ….would have happened, it is pure fantasy, that’s for sure!

            • Ok, BF..have my tactical hat on here. Geographically speaking, of course, had the war actually ended, you have a point that I will concede concerning distance. But I do feel there would have not been a surrender without the consultation of the Russian Forces and I think that Poland and the East still would have been ceded away. Germany’s industrial capacity was not yet destroyed at that time but I also do not think that the breakup of the Italian, Japanese, and German alliance would have pushed the Germans to quick surrender. Hitler’s Generals did not have the brass ones at that time. I even disagree with the way the war was fought in that there was too much emphasis on alliance with England and France. Not that it was not needed, but that it was waaaaay to politically charged. However, the iron curtain would have still existed had Russia not even been in Germany. The 1940’s and 50’s would have been the same result anyway for Eastern Europe because we were war weary and had no stomach for a fight.

  32. To everyone who may read this; You may disagree with my attitude toward what happened on 9/11/2001 and what I would have done about it.

    Get this and get this straight; At the end of WW2, the United States was the five-hundred pound Gorilla on the block. Why? Japan attacked Pearl Harbor and we nuked them for it, that’s why. When we pulled out of Viet Nam we were the five-hundred pound wuss-monkey. Why? We turned our backs on someone who was supposed to be our ally and walked away with a whimper, that’s why.

    That is why we were attacked on 9/11/2001.

    If you are going to be the five-hundred pound Gorilla on the block, then BE the five-hundred pound Gorilla on the block.

    If not, then sit down and shut your mouth.

    BF, to be an Anarchist is to be for total chaos where he who kills the most and fastest wins – all others lose.

    You are not an Anarchist simply because you do not believe that way. Do not get me wrong here, I am not putting you down for your beliefs. I am not putting you down at all. The difference between you and I is that I am a warrior, and you are not. I believe that if you are going to war, then go to war – use your worst and most heinous weapons and get the war over with. Then, and only then, let the politicians win the peace.

    Anything else is just a waste of your best and most loyal men and women for no good reason.

    None of you may agree with me, but I just do not care about that. I do not even expect any of you to understand, simply because none of you – and that includes USW and D13 – have been where I have.

    I believed in then, and still do now, President Reagan’s philosophy of “Peace through Strength”.

    If you are not willing to use what you have in your arsenal to win the war, then do not go to war!

    • G.A. Rowe

      Get this and get this straight; At the end of WW2, the United States was the five-hundred pound Gorilla on the block. Why? Japan attacked Pearl Harbor and we nuked them for it, that’s why.

      Yep. We told the world we are worse than Genghis Khan – completely and totally barbaric.

      We set the world a light with fear – and then expected the world to love us.

      Hellva a plan!

      When we pulled out of Viet Nam we were the five-hundred pound wuss-monkey. Why? We turned our backs on someone who was supposed to be our ally and walked away with a whimper, that’s why.

      Vietnam was never our ‘ally’.

      It was a French colony. The French gave it up – the US decided to give a try at colonization there, too!

      It turned out badly.

      That is why we were attacked on 9/11/2001.

      The US is attacked because we are a stupid gorilla. The US is mercantilist – a fatal drug for any nation. Like many drugs, early in its use, it makes you feel good. Only later, does the body die from it.

      If you are going to be the five-hundred pound Gorilla on the block, then BE the five-hundred pound Gorilla on the block.

      And then !Surprise! everyone is shooting at you because you’re an animal in the midst of civilization.

      BF, to be an Anarchist is to be for total chaos where he who kills the most and fastest wins – all others lose.

      You do -purposely- remain confused about Anarchy.

      Only government – by obliterating innocent human life in a ‘flash’ – is capable of total chaos.

      I am not putting you down at all. The difference between you and I is that I am a warrior, and you are not.

      You are mistaken.

      I am a warrior.

      A warrior is a man who engages in battle

      Killing innocent women and children is not an act of warriors.

      I believe that if you are going to war, then go to war – use your worst and most heinous weapons and get the war over with. Then, and only then, let the politicians win the peace.

      You are Conan the Barbarian. Not a Warrior.

      Anything else is just a waste of your best and most loyal men and women for no good reason.

      Turning warriors into mass murders is a horrific act upon them and their victims.

      I believed in then, and still do now, President Reagan’s philosophy of “Peace through Strength”.

      Strength is not a measure of the inflictions you can cause. Any wild man can cause havoc.

      Strength and Honor is a measure of exercise of control OVER ONE’S SELF in the face of adversity.

      The USA is an out of control maniac. This is not a sign of strength, morals or character.

      • 1. Anarchy is NOT a philosophy.

        2. War has no rules, no good guys, no bad guys . . . He who wins the war is the one left standing when the smoke clears.

        3. The U.S. did not “choose” to intervene in Viet Nam, The United Nations assigned that task to us. Get your history straight.

        4. The U.S. has been doing the U.N. bidding ever since the U.N. was whelped in the minds of corrupt politicians at the end of WW2.

        5. The U.S. entered WW2 at the behest of Joseph Stalin – FDR’s buddy – and Japan was goaded into attacking Pearl Harbor for just that reason. The U.S. nuked Japan to prove to the world that we were the biggest and baddest. It ended the war.

        6. you are NOT a warrior. A warrior fights to win – nothing else matters. Once you show a weakness to your enemy, you have lost not only the battle, but the entire war. Your weakness is compassion to non-combatants. Islam cares nothing about women, children, nor any other thing except winning the battles and ultimately killing all who do not believe in them or who will not follow their ways. Period. As long as you show compassion, you are weak and will lose.

        • 1. Anarchy is NOT a philosophy.

          Where did this comment come from?

          2. War has no rules, no good guys, no bad guys . . . He who wins the war is the one left standing when the smoke clears.

          Only in battles between barbarians.

          But for the rest of us, history has had many “rules” governing war – Geneva convention being one such example.

          But as far back as Sun Tzu – rules of war were paramount to prevent the rules and genocide of barbarians.

          3. The U.S. did not “choose” to intervene in Viet Nam, The United Nations assigned that task to us. Get your history straight.

          Pardon me??? Are you thinking Korea?

          4. The U.S. has been doing the U.N. bidding ever since the U.N. was whelped in the minds of corrupt politicians at the end of WW2.

          I don’t think so.

          5. The U.S. entered WW2 at the behest of Joseph Stalin – FDR’s buddy – and Japan was goaded into attacking Pearl Harbor for just that reason. The U.S. nuked Japan to prove to the world that we were the biggest and baddest. It ended the war.

          The war was long over by then. It was a barbaric act as a demonstration to the world ….

          …”We are insane barbarians, be afraid!”….

          6. you are NOT a warrior. A warrior fights to win – nothing else matters. Once you show a weakness to your enemy, you have lost not only the battle, but the entire war. Your weakness is compassion to non-combatants.

          You are, then, merely a murderer and not a warrior.

          I can live with ‘my weakness’ – you have to live with the hell your belief creates.

          Islam cares nothing about women, children, nor any other thing except winning the battles and ultimately killing all who do not believe in them or who will not follow their ways. Period. As long as you show compassion, you are weak and will lose.

          If this is the belief of this nation – then we’ve lost already.

          • “If this is the belief of this nation – then we’ve lost already.”

            This is FACT!

            If this nation adopts your belief, then yes, we are lost and will be nothing – not even a footnote in history!

            The impotent UN devided Nam into the north and south, just like it did Korea, and assigned the French to help the south. When they got their butts whipped by charlie, then the UN sent the U.S. in there – however Ike refused to send anyone but a few advisors and then give the south our WW2 and Korean war surpluses with which to arm their military. JFK followed Ike’s lead and stayed out of it. LBJ, after following under the spell of McNamera was the one who led us into the fire – all the while knowing that we would never see it through!

            I do not know where you get your information from, but someone is feeding you tons of BS about this.

            • G.A. Rowe

              I think you got your countries mixed up.

              Vietnam was not “partitioned”.

              France began its conquest of Indochina in 1859. In spite of military resistance, by 1888 the area of the current-day nations of Cambodia and Vietnam was made into the colony of French Indochina (Laos was added later).[17] Various Vietnamese opposition movements to the French rule existed during this period but none were ultimately as successful as the Viet Minh common front (openly controlled by the Communist Party of Vietnam) which was founded in 1941

              So, the Minh well pre-dated the end of WW2, G.A.

              In August 1945, the Japanese had been defeated and surrendered unconditionally. In French Indochina this created a power vacuum as the French were still interned and the Japanese forces stood down.[23] Into this vacuum, the Viet Minh entered and grasped power across Vietnam in the “August Revolution”[23] (in large part supported by the Vietnamese population).[24]

              After the surrender of Japan….
              On 2 September 1945, Ho Chi Minh (leader of the Viet Minh) declared the independent Democratic Republic of Vietnam before a crowd of 500,000 in Hanoi.

              However, the major allied victors of World War II (the United Kingdom, the USA and the Soviet Union) all agreed that the area belonged to the French.[23] As the French did not have the ships, weapons or soldiers to immediately retake Vietnam, the major powers came to an agreement that British troops would occupy the south while Nationalist Chinese forces would move in from the north

              Elections held and….
              In January 1946, the Viet Minh won elections across central and northern Vietnam.[26] The French landed in Hanoi by March 1946 and in November of that year they ousted the Viet Minh from the city

              Then the Communists won in China…
              this situation changed by 1949 when the Chinese Communists had largely won the Chinese Civil War and were free to provide arms to their Vietnamese allies

              Then, the opposing ideologies recognized their own as the legitimate rulers of Vietnam…

              In January 1950, the communist nations, led by the People’s Republic of China (PRC), recognized the Viet Minh’s Democratic Republic of Vietnam as the government of Vietnam. Non-Communist nations recognized the French-backed State of Vietnam in Saigon led by former Emperor Bao Dai the following month

              …which caused the split.

              It was NOT a UN action.

              The Battle of Dien Bien Phu marked the end of French involvement in Indochina. The Viet Minh and their mercurial commander Vo Nguyen Giap handed the French a stunning military defeat, and on 7 May 1954, the French Union garrison surrendered. At the Geneva Conference the French negotiated a ceasefire agreement with the Viet Minh. Independence was granted to Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam.

              Vietnam was temporarily partitioned at the 17th parallel, and under the terms of the Geneva Convention, civilians were to be given the opportunity to freely move between the two provisional states.

              Elections throughout the country were to be held, according to the Geneva accords, but were blocked by the South Vietnamese president, who feared a communist victory.

              By 1954, the U.S. had supplied 300,000 small arms and spent US$1 billion in support of the French military effort and was shouldering 80 percent of the cost of the war

              Then the Gulf of Tokin, and the rest is history.

              Points…
              1) It was not a UN action, never was.

              2) Ike used Vietnam as ‘proof’ of Communist expansionism.

              3) LBJ and then Nixon did expand the war disastrously.

      • Let me understand this BF…

        BF says: The US is attacked because we are a stupid gorilla. The US is mercantilist – a fatal drug for any nation. Like many drugs, early in its use, it makes you feel good. Only later, does the body die from it.

        D13 says: Interesting. If I interpret your quote above correctly, then you surmise that because the US is mercantilist…that is justification for being attacked and, hence, we are a bad guy.

        Then you say if the US attacks, in retaliation, we are a bad guy, because we asked for it because we are mercantilist. Then in most of your posts…anyone who attacks another is a bad guy but you justify the Taliban and Al qaeda and how great they are and that they are misunderstood and we are a bad guy. You even justify Japan’s war on the US and then criticize the way we end it. No, you are not an anarchist. I don’t know what you are right now….entertaining, though and abound with theories and no solutions except to bury your head in the sand. Hmmm.

        And you call others a hypocrite?

        • D13

          Let me understand this BF…

          Take your time…

          BF says: The US is attacked because we are a stupid gorilla. The US is mercantilist – a fatal drug for any nation. Like many drugs, early in its use, it makes you feel good. Only later, does the body die from it.

          D13 says: Interesting. If I interpret your quote above correctly, then you surmise that because the US is mercantilist…that is justification for being attacked and, hence, we are a bad guy.

          D13

          If a nation, by force of arms, invades another country so to control its resources and its economy, then I would expect the USA to be attacked!

          If China invaded the USA to seize the wheat fields, what would you do????

          Then you say if the US attacks, in retaliation, we are a bad guy, because we asked for it because we are mercantilist.

          mmmm, yeah.

          If you steal the property from another people to enrich yourself, be prepared to be attacked by those people – in some way or manner.

          Look up “Blowback” – CIA inspired documents regarding reactions to USA policies….

          Then in most of your posts…anyone who attacks another is a bad guy but you justify the Taliban and Al qaeda and how great they are and that they are misunderstood and we are a bad guy.

          We are in Afghanistan because the Taliban refused to allow a pipeline.

          We were attacked because we invaded Lebanon, hold hypocritical international relations with Israel, and support tyrannical puppet states of Saudi Arabia and the Shah, just to name a few…

          Perhaps if the USA altered such psychopathic policies, other people would see this country as a core threat to their own lives and well-being.

          What da ya think, give it a try?

          You even justify Japan’s war on the US and then criticize the way we end it.

          No, I did not justify their war.

          I explained it.

          FDR did nothing to diffuse the war potential – he inflamed it – purposely, so to get to war with Germany.

          Japan invaded China, and the FDR used that to manipulate the USA into war with Germany.

          And you call others a hypocrite?

          I calls ’em as I sees ’em.

    • GA…curiosity has me….what years were you a Marine?

  33. Interesting posts today.

    Black Flag, I thought quite alot today about whether the “cold war” would have taken place if not for the bombs being dropped on Japan. It irked me that despite the devistation, the whole “cold war” crap could have been avoided. Even without the two big bombs, cities were destroyed, and many civilian lives were lost, using conventional warfare. But with technology, I think the “cold war” just happened earlier than it would have, but I do believe it would have anyway.

    Today, I got an e-mail with pictures of Hiroshima and Nagasaki then and now. The now pictures showed two very wonderfully modern cities. Following, were pictures of Detroit, Mich. These pictures were of the blight that has invaded them, like many cities, mine included, with the statement following all the pics “and we WON the war”. Thought it was pretty telling of our government and what they are really about.

    In another email, it showed the top ten cities with the worst poverty levels. It then stated the last time (if ever) a Republican was elected Mayor of these cities. Since my local area is the same as these cities, I see it everyday. My answer to the Left leaning folks based on these facts is simple: Greater Good my ass!

    OK, I vented and feel better, thanks for listening.

    G!

    • Of course, no one knows – we only know what happened – which occurred as a consequence of an infinite number of previous events and causes.

      We cannot know the one that did – or might have prevented – one thing or another.

      A simple understanding of what we can know and what we cannot know.

      1) Watch a sprinkler. We cannot accurately predict where a drop of water from that sprinkler will fall. However, after a series of locating those drops, we can work ‘backward’ and figure out where all the drops came from – that is, we can find the cause – the sprinkler.

      2) Watch an ice cube in the summer heat. You can predict the future. It will melt. It creates a puddle of water. However, if I showed you a puddle of water and asked “what did the ice cube look like?” – you cannot say.

      Some things we can predict accurately the future, but not its roots in the past.

      From some things, we can find the cause in the past, but not its effect into the future.

      The biggest, and near impossible challenge – to tell which one is which.

      • Further things….

        We will never know what action stopped another action.

        For example, say the airlines decided to put in hijack-proof doors on Sept. 1/2001

        The guy who ordered this incredibly expensive retrofit – because he imagined a wild scenario would probably be fired. He would have cost the airlines about $150 million at a time they were struggling financially.

        But 9/11 might not have happened.

        But since it would not have happened, nobody would know how much this guy saved – hundreds of billions of dollars in damage and war. The airlines would have fired this guy, and he would disappear into history as the ‘unknown man who prevented 9/11 and the global catastrophe that followed’.

        How many men in history – by some action or non-action – that have done this? Who knows? We can never know….

        This is Bastiat’s ‘Unseen’. We do not account for what we do not see – but we should.

        When we remove marbles from the stairwell – we account for the ‘not having a bad accident’.

        We need to do this type of thinking – and it is very hard and difficult to think like this; it is not intuitive – for much of our actions (or non-actions).

        • BF says: We need to do this type of thinking – and it is very hard and difficult to think like this; it is not intuitive – for much of our actions (or non-actions).

          Don’t you think you have to take it further, BF? I can agree with this statement and its intent, however, all the thinking in the world does not do much, if only one side thinks. I agree..we need to do this type of thinking and come to logical conclusions and, therefore, is objective thinking. But, we cannot possibly foretell “the other guy”, therefore, is it not logical to have all of the options thought out? I think the only place that you and I differ is where does it stop. I see you being the man that would negotiate at all costs and liberties to avoid confrontation as long as there was a solution. I, of course, will have only so far I will go and if confrontation happens, so be it. DO I understand where you were going correctly?

          • I see you being the man that would negotiate at all costs and liberties to avoid confrontation as long as there was a solution. I, of course, will have only so far I will go and if confrontation happens, so be it. DO I understand where you were going correctly?

            I would negotiate without end to save liberty.

            Because, as soon as such negotiations end, so will liberty for someone.

            Confrontations are not always avoidable. There are many men who wish to steal my property and will not be deterred.

            But just because they might is not sufficient for me to whack them. There needs to be a much higher onus than mere ‘might happen’.

      • BF says: Some things we can predict accurately the future, but not its roots in the past.

        From some things, we can find the cause in the past, but not its effect into the future.

        The biggest, and near impossible challenge – to tell which one is which.

        D13 says: Cool.

    • Hey, G man…..How r ya..

      The cold war was inevitable, I think. But hindsight is always 20/20.

      I think the two biggest kids on the block were going to fight but somehow it got shoved to surrogates. We were duped into Vietnam…it was once the “French Riviera”. Actually, e
      Eisenhower and not Kennedy started us in Vietnam…..but, the cold war nothing more than the surrogates doing our fighting for us…except we could not stay out of it.

      Korea was inevitable as well.

      BF was right about one thing, we could have staved off Japan easily. They recognized early on that they screwed up and their appetite was far beyond their grasp…however, unlike BF who sees no good in the United States at all (my opinion, of course). Japan was not goaded into war. They had no choice because the military was in control. Natural resources and the cutting of oil and all is a trade issue…not a prelude to war.

      The “bomb” did not have to be dropped as far as Japan was concerned. The bombing of Japan was to send a message….not to the Japanese but elsewhere. There are many historians who surmised that had we not utilized it, that the war would have simply shifted and it would not have been only Germany.

      But history is what it is and we cannot change it. But we can surely surmise….and be correct. 🙂

      As far as the other you mentioned…it is a shame.

      • Eisenhower and not Kennedy started us in Vietnam

        …and you mentioned ‘duped’.

        I believe it is vital to understand what happened after the WW2.

        Truman had his hands full of Stalin. Stalin was in Korea, China, Eastern Europe, Iran and the Middle East – encroaching in India (pre-independence)…

        Eventually, Truman contained Stalin to Eastern Europe and Asia.

        Eisenhower took over – and he established a doctrine that is still the official policy of the USAYou are with us or you are against us.

        This policy has a serious consequence.

        Indigenous independence movements in other countries reject foreign involvement.

        However, since they ‘are not for us’ – we make these movements US enemies – where no enemy actually exists.

        When you begin to follow the US actions post-1948 – you see this ugly doctrine everywhere. It explains why we crush democratic movements and install tyrants (Iran and Chile, as examples).

        Bushie II re-invoked this policy after 9/11 and !poof! two more wars….

        We are at war with any indigenous political movement – whether or not they are our enemy.

        Japan was not goaded into war. They had no choice because the military was in control. Natural resources and the cutting of oil and all is a trade issue…not a prelude to war.

        Of course they were goaded into war.

        US forced the Dutch government in exile to embargo Indonesian (Dutch East Indies) oil. This, on its own, was an act of war by the USA.

        FDR – to meet his election promise to not go to war, but meet his promise to Churchill to go to war – needed Japan or Germany to ‘shoot first’.

        Hitler couldn’t be goaded into war – even with the violations of the neutrality acts and sinking of German ships.

        Japan was limited in her response – she had to seize the oil.

        She could not with the US and British fleets sailing the Pacific.

        She had two – and only two – plans. Diplomacy with the USA or war. The USA ignored all diplomatic entries.

        Thus, FDR had his war.

        • I will go with you 50% on post WWII….and Eisenhower policy….

          I will not go with you on the oil for Japan (I am well aware of the Dutch and oil)…for on that premise, you would have to state that any trade embargo, for whatever reason, is an act of war. Or tariff issues, as well, would you not?

          Or that any natural resource, governed by one country, but needed by another and was refused, is that also an act of war in your mind?

          • http://www.crimesofwar.org/thebook/blockade-act-war.html

            Embargoes are traditionally considered acts of war.

            • Military blockades….act of war….agreed.

              trade embargoes….act of war…disagree. If that is the case, then we should be at war with China now because of their embargoes and high tariffs.

              Example…I cannot sell our ranch beef to China…it is embargoed by China.

          • The USA has, of course, the international right to sell or not sell.

            However, this was not the case.

            The USA forced Holland and the Dutch East Indies to embargo Japan by threat of invasion by the USA.

            The USA promised protection from invasion but promised to invade to DEI

            That is what makes it an act of war upon Japan.

            • Wow….that is a stretch….a real far stretch.

              • Japan quickly lost 93 percent of its oil supply after President Franklin Delano Roosevelt issued an executive order on 26 July 1941 which froze all of Japan’s U.S. assets and embargoed all oil exports to Japan.[6] In addition, the Dutch government in exile, after the urging of the Allies and with the support of Queen Wilhelmina, broke its economic treaty with Japan and joined with the embargo in August

              • Understand….still a stretch to justify war…even by your standards.

              • Justify?

                It explains it

        • You might find this interesting:

          Woodrow Wilson (1913-1921)

          Milestones of U.S. involvement under President Woodrow Wilson.

          * Wilson ignores petition by Ho Chi Minh for help in creating Vietnam independent from French rule and led by nationalist government.

          Franklin D. Roosevelt (1933-1945)

          Milestones of U.S. involvement under President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

          * Roosevelt declines repeated requests from the French to assist France’s attempts to recolonize Vietnam.

          Harry S. Truman (1945–1953)

          Milestones of U.S. involvement under President Harry S. Truman.

          * 9 March 1945 — Japan overthrows nominal French authority in Indochina and declares an independent Vietnamese puppet state. The French administration is disarmed.
          * 15 August 1945 — Japan surrenders to the Allies. In Indochina, the Japanese administration allows Hồ Chí Minh to take over control of the country. This is called the August Revolution. Hồ Chí Minh fights with a variety of other political factions for control of the major cities.
          * August 1945 — A few days after the Vietnamese “revolution”, Nationalist Chinese forces enter from the north and, as previously planned by the allies, establish an administration in the country as far south as the 16th parallel north.
          * 26 September 1945: OSS officer Lieutenant Colonel A. Peter Dewey — working with the Viet Minh to repatriate Americans captured by the Japanese — is mistaken for a Frenchman, shot and killed by the Viet Minh. He thus became the first American casualty in Vietnam.
          * October 1945 — British troops land in southern Vietnam and establish a provisional administration. The British free French soldiers and officials imprisoned by the Japanese. The French begin taking control of cities within the British zone of occupation.
          * February 1946 — The French sign an agreement with China. France gives up its concessions in Shanghai and other Chinese ports. In exchange, China agrees to assist the French in returning to Vietnam north of the 17th parallel.
          * 6 March 1946 — After negotiations with the Chinese and the Viet Minh, the French sign an agreement recognizing Vietnam within the French Union. Shortly after, the French land at Haiphong and occupy the rest of northern Vietnam. The Viet Minh use the negotiating process with France and China to buy time to use their armed forces to destroy all competing nationalist groups in the north.
          * December 1946 — Negotiations between the Viet Minh and the French break down. The Viet Minh are driven out of Hanoi into the countryside.
          * 1947–1949 — The Viet Minh fight a limited insurgency in remote rural areas of northern Vietnam.
          * 1949 — Chinese communists reach the northern border of Indochina. The Viet Minh drive the French from the border region and begin to receive large amounts of weapons from the Soviet Union and China. The weapons transform the Viet Minh from an irregular large-scale insurgency into a conventional army.
          * 1 May 1950 — After the capture of Hainan Island from Chinese Nationalist forces by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, President Truman approves $10 million in military assistance for anti-communist efforts in Indochina.
          * September 1950 – Truman sends the Military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG) Indochina to Vietnam to assist the French. The President claimed they were not sent as combat troops, but to supervise the use of $10 million worth of US military equipment to support the French in their effort to fight the Viet Minh forces.
          * Following the outbreak of the Korean War, Truman announces “acceleration in the furnishing of military assistance to the forces of France and the Associated States in Indochina…” and sends 123 non-combat troops to help with supplies to fight against the communist Viet Minh.
          * 1951 – Truman authorizes $150 million in French support.

          Dwight D. Eisenhower (1953–1961)

          Milestones of the involvement under President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

          * 1953 — By November, French commander in Indochina, General Navarre, asked U.S. General McArthur to loan twelve Fairchild C-119 aircraft, to be flown by French crews, to facilitate Operation Castor at Dien Bien Phu.
          * 1954 — In January, Navarre’s Deputy asked for additional transport aircraft. Negotiations ended on March 3 with 24 CIA pilots (CAT) to operate 12 US Air Force C-119’s, flying undercover using French insignia, but maintained by the USAF.[1]
          * 1954 — The Viet Minh defeat the French at the battle of Dien Bien Phu. The defeat, along with the end of the Korean war the previous year, causes the French to seek a negotiated settlement to the war.
          * 1954 — The Geneva Conference (1954), called to determine the post-French future of Indochina, proposes a temporary division of Vietnam, to be followed by nationwide elections to unify the country in 1956.
          * 1954 — Two months after the Geneva conference, North Vietnam forms Group 100 with headquarters at Ban Namèo. Its purpose is to direct, organize, train and supply the Pathet Lao to gain control of Laos, which along with Cambodia and Vietnam formed French Indochina.
          * 1955 — North Vietnam launches an ‘anti-landlord’ campaign, during which counter-revolutionaries are imprisoned or killed. The numbers killed or imprisoned are disputed, with historian Stanley Karnow estimating about 6,000 while others (see the book “Fire in the Lake”) estimate only 800. R.J. Rummel puts the figure as high as 200,000.[2]
          * 1 November 1955 — President Eisenhower deploys the Military Assistance Advisory Group to train the ARVN (South Vietnamese Army). This marks the official beginning of American involvement in the war as recognized by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.[3]
          * April 1956 — The last French troops leave Vietnam.
          * 1954–1956 — 450,000 Vietnamese civilians flee the Viet Minh administration in North Vietnam and relocate in South Vietnam. Approximately 52,000 move in the opposite direction.
          * 1956 — National unification elections do not occur.
          * December 1958 — North Vietnam invades Laos and occupies parts of the country
          * 8 July 1959 — Charles Ovnand and Dale R. Buis become the first two American Advisers to die in Vietnam.[4]
          * September 1959 — North Vietnam forms Group 959 which assumes command of the Pathet Lao forces in Laos.

          John F. Kennedy (1961–1963)

          Milestones of the escalation under President Kennedy.

          * November 1960 — Coup attempt by paratroopers is foiled after Diem falsely promises reform, allowing loyalists to crush the rebels.
          * 20 December 1960 — The National Liberation Front of South Vietnam (NLF) is founded.
          * January 1961 — Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev pledges support for “wars of national liberation” throughout the world. The idea of creating a neutral Laos is suggested to Kennedy.
          * May 1961 — Kennedy sends 400 United States Army Special Forces personnel to South Vietnam to train South Vietnamese soldiers following a visit to the country by Vice-President Johnson.
          * June 1961 — Kennedy meets with Khrushchev in Vienna. He protests North Vietnam’s attacks on Laos and points out that the U.S. was supporting the neutrality of Laos. The two leaders agree to pursue a policy of creating a neutral Laos.
          * June 1961 — Kennedy said, “Now we have a problem making our power credible and Vietnam looks like the place” to James Reston of The New York Times (immediately after meeting Khrushchev in Vienna).
          * October 1961 — Following successful NLF attacks, Defense Secretary Robert S. McNamara recommends sending six divisions (200,000 men) to Vietnam.
          * 8 February 1962 – The Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV) is created by President Kennedy
          * February 1962 — Attempted assassination of Diem by two air force officers who bombed his palace, fails.
          * 23 July 1962 – International Agreement on the Neutrality of Laos is signed at Geneva, promising Laotian neutrality.
          * 1 August 1962 — Kennedy signs the Foreign Assistance Act of 1962 which provides “…military assistance to countries which are on the rim of the Communist world and under direct attack.”
          * 3 January 1963 — NLF victory in the Battle of Ap Bac.
          * 8 May 1963 — Buddhists demonstrate in Hue, South Vietnam after the display of religious flags were prohibited, during the celebration of Vesak, Gautama Buddha’s birthday; but, Catholic flags celebrating the consecration of Archbishop Ngo Dinh Thuc, brother of Ngo Dinh Diem were not prohibited. The police of Ngo Dinh Can, Diem’s younger brother, open fire, killing nine.
          * May 1963 — Republican Barry Goldwater declares that the U.S. should fight to win or withdraw from Vietnam. Later on, during his presidential campaign against Lyndon B. Johnson, his Democratic opponents accuse him of wanting to use nuclear weapons in the conflict.
          * 11 June 1963 — Photographs of protesting Buddhist monk, Thich Quang Duc, burning himself to death in protest, in Saigon, appear in U.S. newspapers.
          * Summer 1963 — Madame Ngo Dinh Nhu, defacto First Lady to the bachelor Diem makes a series of vitriolic attacks on Buddhists, calling the immolations “barbecues”. Diem ignores US calls to silence her.
          * 21 August 1963 — ARVN special forces loyal to Ngo Dinh Nhu, younger brother of Diem, stage raids across the country, attacking Buddhist temples and firing on monks. The cremated remains of Thich Quang Duc are confiscated from Xa Loi Pagoda in Saigon. New US ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge rebukes Diem by visiting Xa Loi and giving refuge to Buddhist leader Thich Tri Quang. The US calls for Nhu to be dropped by Diem, and threatens to cut aid to Colonel Le Quang Tung’s Special Forces if they are not sent into battle, rather than used to repress dissidents.
          * 2 September 1963 — Kennedy criticises the Diem regime in an interview with Walter Cronkite, citing the Buddhist repression and claiming that Diem is out of touch.
          * Late October 1963 — Nhu, unaware that Saigon region commander General Ton That Dinh is double-crossing him, draws up plans for a phony coup and counter coup, in order to reaffirm the Diem regime. Dinh sends Nhu’s loyal special forces out of Saigon on the pretext of fighting communists and in readiness for the counter coup, and rings Saigon with rebel troops.
          * 1 November 1963 — Military officers launch a coup d’état against Diem, with the tacit approval of the Kennedy administration. Diem and Nhu escape the presidential residence via a secret exit after loyalist forces were locked out of Saigon, unable to rescue them.
          * 2 November 1963 — Diem and Nhu are discovered in nearby Cholon. Although they had been promised exile by the junta, they are executed by Nguyen Van Nhung, bodyguard of General Duong Van Minh. Minh leads the military junta.
          * November 1963 — Kennedy increased the number of troops from the 800 that were there when he became President to 16,300 just before his death.
          * 22 November 1963 — Kennedy is assassinated.

          [edit] Under the Kennedy Administration

          In 1960 the new administration of President John F. Kennedy remained essentially committed to the bi-partisan, anti-communist foreign policies inherited from the administrations of Presidents Truman and Eisenhower. During 1961, his first year in office, Kennedy found himself faced with a three-part crisis: The failure of the Bay of Pigs invasion in Cuba; the construction of the Berlin Wall by the Soviets; and a negotiated settlement between the pro-Western government of Laos and the Pathet Lao communist movement. Fearing that another failure on the part of the U.S. to stop communist expansion would fatally damage U.S. credibility with its allies, Kennedy realized, “Now we have a problem in making our power credible… and Vietnam looks like the place.”[5] The commitment to defend South Vietnam was reaffirmed by Kennedy on 11 May in National Security Action Memorandum 52 which became known as “The Presidential Program for Vietnam”. Its opening statement reads:

          U.S. objectives and concept of operations [are] to prevent communist domination of South Vietnam; to create in that country a viable and increasingly democratic society, and to initiate, on an accelerated basis, a series of mutually supporting actions of a military, political, economic, psychological, and covert character designed to achieve this objective.[6]

          Kennedy was intrigued by the idea of utilizing United States Army Special Forces for counterinsurgency conflicts in Third World countries threatened by the new “wars of national liberation”. Originally intended for use behind front lines after a conventional invasion of Europe, Kennedy believed that the guerrilla tactics employed by Special Forces would be effective in the “brush fire” war in South Vietnam. He saw British success in using such forces during the Malayan Emergency as a strategic template. Thus in May 1961 Kennedy sent detachments of Green Berets to South Vietnam to train South Vietnamese soldiers in guerrilla warfare.

          The Diệm regime had been initially able to cope with the insurgency of the National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam (NLF, or derogatively, Viet Cong) in South Vietnam with the aid of U.S. matériel and advisers, and, by 1962, seemed to be gaining the upper hand. Senior U.S. military leaders received positive reports from the U.S. commander, General Paul D. Harkins of the Military Assistance Command, Vietnam, or MACV. By the following year, however, cracks began to appear in the façade of success. In January a possible victory that was turned into a stunning defeat for government forces at the Battle of Ap Bac caused consternation among both the military advisers in the field and among politicians in Washington, D.C. JFK also indicated to Walter Cronkite that the war may be unwinnable, and that it was ultimately a Vietnamese war, not an American war.[7]

          Diệm was already growing unpopular with many of his countrymen because of his administration’s nepotism, corruption, and its apparent bias in favor of the Catholic minority—of which Diem was a part—at the expense of the Buddhist majority. This contributed to the impression of Diem’s rule as an extension of the French Colonial regime. Promised land reforms were not instituted, and Diem’s strategic hamlet program for village self-defense (and government control) was a disaster. The Kennedy administration grew increasingly frustrated with Diệm. In 1963, a crackdown by Diệm’s forces was launched against Buddhist monks protesting discriminatory practices and demanding a political voice. Diem’s repression of the protests sparked the so-called Buddhist Revolt, during which self-immolations by several monks took place and which were covered in the world press. The communists took full advantage of the situation and fueled anti-Diem sentiment to create further instability.

  34. President Obama is not considering the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan, the White House said Monday.

    “I don’t think we have the option to leave. That’s quite clear,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said in his daily briefing with reporters, two days after eight U.S. troops and two Afghan soldiers were killed during a firefight in a remote region of the country.

    The debate over whether to send as many as 40,000 more troops to Afghanistan is a major element of a strategy overhaul that senior administration policy advisers will consider this week as they gather for top-level meetings on the direction of the war.

    Obama has invited a bipartisan group of congressional leaders to the White House on Tuesday to confer about the war. He said the administration would brief leaders from both parties and key committee chairmen and would seek their opinions.

    “They’re an important part of this and the president wants to hear from them,” Gibbs said.

    Gibbs, describing the president as “deeply saddened” over Saturday’s casualties, said Obama does not envision deploying more troops to outposts like the ones that were attacked over weekend. He said the administration is considering shifting troops to more populated areas instead.

    Obama’s National Security Adviser, Gen. Jim Jones, and the top U.S. military commander in Afghanistan, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, have sparred in recent days over the need for a troop surge.

    In a 66-page document leaked to the Washington Post, McChrystal wrote that tens of thousands more troops are needed in Afghanistan to address a “deteriorating” security situation and maintain stability in the region.

    But on Sunday, Jones called the push for a troop surge an “initial assessment,” and said the decision to deploy more troops is “just one option.”

    “I want to be very clear that Afghanistan is not in imminent danger of falling,” Jones said in an interview with CNN’s “State of the Union.” Asked if the end of the war was near, he said, “I think the end is much more complex than adding ‘X’ number of troops.”

  35. f you thought Washington—which already took over banking and autos, and is fast-tracking attempts to take over health care and energy—would leave the Internet alone, you were dead wrong. The Internet (perhaps our greatest free market success story in recent years) is squarely in the cross-hairs of the administration and it’s not waiting for Congress to act. The charge is being led by an eager, ideologically committed White House staffer named Susan Crawford. Officially, she is the Special Assistant for Science, Technology, and Innovation Policy. Wired Magazine calls her, “the most powerful geek close to the president.” In recent weeks, bloggers and online activists have begun calling Crawford the “Internet Czar.” The shoe fits.

    As Bill Collier of Freedomist has reported, Crawford has known ties to ACORN, which is one of the participating organizations of her “OneWebDay” project. Crawford self-consciously modeled OneWebDay on Earth Day and the radical environmental agenda that it propelled forward. As Crawford explained her mission to The Wall Street Journal in April: “We should do a better job as a nation of making sure fast, affordable broadband is as ubiquitous as electricity, water, snail mail, or any other public utility.”

    In other words, the agenda of her organization is to transform access to the Internet into a government entitlement project, with all the necessary government intrusion and control in order guarantee it to everyone—in the world. Not surprisingly, listed alongside on the OneWebDay participating organizations list is a group called Free Press, which is the biggest advocacy organization pushing the Obama administration to adopt sweeping regulations of the Internet.

    Free Press was founded by Robert McChesney, an avowed Marxist who is Washington’s leading advocate of so-called network neutrality regulations who recently argued—on a Web site called SocialistProject.ca—that this type of Internet regulation is a prerequisite for a socialist revolution: “Instead of waiting for the revolution to happen, we learned that unless you make significant changes in the media, it will be vastly more difficult to have a revolution.”

    Crawford and McChesney apparently have the full support of the Obama administration and an FCC that is determined to move toward transforming the Internet into a Washington-controlled utility as quickly as possible. The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Julius Genachowski, recently announced his pursuit of precisely the regulations they want.

    The FCC isn’t pursuing this just because of orders coming from Obama’s Internet Czar. This goes all the way to the top—Obama himself said on the campaign trail last year: “I will take a back seat to no one in my commitment to net Neutrality.”

    It’s of no apparent concern to Obama, Crawford, and Genachowski that net neutrality regulations—which would require network operators to treat every bit of traffic the same way, regardless of whether that makes sense from an engineering or business standpoint—will result in a collapse of private investment in Internet infrastructure, because they regard private investment as unnecessary within their vision of government ownership and control.

    Proponents of net neutrality rely on the scare tactic that big bad cable and phone companies will block access to Web sites and cause other mischief unless the benevolent federal government rides to the rescue, and soon. But they’ve been ringing this alarm for the better part of a decade and none of the horrors they warn us about have happened. There is a simple reason—these companies are in an intense competition, especially in the wireless space, which is as cutthroat as any industry in America. If one company tried to block access to Web sites or engage in other mischief, they would lose their customers in droves to the competition.

    Net neutrality regulations would destroy private investment and we would end up with a government-owned and controlled network. We’ll have nowhere to go if the government turns out to be not quite as benevolent as some have hoped. That’s a frightening scenario and we should do everything we can to stop the net neutrality regulation that would start us down that path.

  36. Wow, this is one of the scariest things I’ve ever read here…because I agree pretty much 100%…

    Given that, you might want to rethink your position USWeapon!! 😉

    I also supported the Afghan War, and the ‘route’ in the first few months was no surprise. We didn’t catch Bin laden, but that was more political than military. It would still be nice to catch him, but mostly for political reasons.

    But since then, it seems to be one “we’re almost there” after another. The first election…get the Afghan army and police trained…the next election…get the Afghan army and police trained…is there another election soon???

    And now the Taliban have regrouped and regained strength and support…

    This is the history of Afghanistan and much of the middle east. They’ve been the ‘cross-roads’ of the world for centuries. Traders and Armies have been passing thru forever, and no one has been able to change or control them in the long term.

    The one little ‘twinkle’ of daylight in all of this is Pakistan. Corrupt as hell? You bet! But in recent months, they have been actively fighting Al Qaeda. I don’t know if this is just self-preservation (Al Qaeda was getting awful close to Islamabad) or if they’re sincere in this fight. But if Pakistan continues to fight on their side, and we leave Afghanistan, Al Qaeda will just cross back over into Afghanistan…

    Technology has made huge steps in the past 8 years (war always does that!).
    Could we pull out most ground troops and fight Al Qaeda from the air with planes and drones?
    Could small Special Ops teams provide the intel/targeting info to make this type of anti-terrorism war effective?

    I don’t think it’s possible to actually ‘win’, but I hate to just leave, especially with Pakistan stepping up recently.

    Is there a way to “de-escalate” the war and work our way out?

    Yes, that means we lose, but would it be better for the Afghan people?

    McChrystal is taking a lot of heat – from all sides… Seems like most here agree the media and the pundits should butt-out of this process so cooler heads can prevail. I agree.

    Someone made a comment about Afghan being a tribal area and no strong central government will ever work. I really agree with this.

    The recent elections and the alleged fraud speak volumes.

    The middle east AIN’T the USA. Thinking we can inject our values (ha, ha) and type of government on them is one of the reasons we’ve made no progress there in…decades…or ever…

    (I’ve been reading and typing on-and-off all day, and I forget who said what…so I may have mixed a few things up…)

    • But in recent months, they have been actively fighting Al Qaeda. I don’t know if this is just self-preservation (Al Qaeda was getting awful close to Islamabad) or if they’re sincere in this fight.

      But there is the rub!

      They are not fighting Al Qaeda – Al Qaeda doesn’t have more than a few hundred men.

      They are fighting the Pastun – a really bad decision. And yes, this tribe DOES have the military might to overthrow Pakistan.

      But if Pakistan continues to fight on their side, and we leave Afghanistan, Al Qaeda will just cross back over into Afghanistan…

      Al Qaeda is a CIA operation – end the CIA and Al Qaeda evaporates.

      Why do you think the Al Qaeda escaped by flying through US air combat patrol??

      Could we pull out most ground troops and fight Al Qaeda from the air with planes and drones?

      Sure, if you don’t mind slaughtering kids.

      Could small Special Ops teams provide the intel/targeting info to make this type of anti-terrorism war effective?

      That opportunity was lost 7 days after the invasion of Afghanistan.

      Is there a way to “de-escalate” the war and work our way out?

      Yes, we could have let the election do that for the USA. The ‘real elected’ President could have given the USA the golden boot …. “Thanks for all you’ve done – here is your parade and medals – now get out”.

      But, instead, mercantilism raised its horrific head, and the election was ‘manipulated’ to get ‘our man’ back in the seat.

      Someone made a comment about Afghan being a tribal area and no strong central government will ever work. I really agree with this.

      Everyone conveniently forgets that the Taliban had effectively silenced the war lords, and received the blessing of the tribes.

      • And this, in your estimation, makes the Taliban noteworthy?

        • Yes, given that for 40 years there had been nothing but civil war.

          That is why the Taliban has such a following – they provided peace…. until the Americans attacked.

  37. USWeapon,

    A more generic question on this comment:

    Take up the defensive posture that I have espoused in the past.

    Is there a previous post with your thoughts on this?

    We talked about this briefly once. I kind of agree with this, as long as it’s not isolationism…my concern would be our allies around the world. If we pull back within our borders, it takes a hell of an effort to get an army across the Atlantic/Pacific.

    Europe could be over-run before we can react…?

    If we don’t pull-back completely – leave equipment…and maintenance personal…and a few troops to guard them…and pretty soon we really didn’t pull back…

    So we stop “bully” people, but we lose influence (same thing?)…

    Do you think someone else will step into that void? Russia or China?

    • Todd,

      Yes there is. I will find it tonight and post a link to it. I will also answer the questions you asked here.

    • Who cares who overrun’s Europe?

      Why would it matter? Does it matter if they are ruled by “A” team or “B” team? Why do you care – do you live there??

      Will Russia and China fill a vacuum – sure!
      But they live there the US does not!

      Check geography, Todd. The USA is in North America. Russia is in Europe and China in Asia.

      I’d suggest we should concentrate our efforts of peace and prosperity in North America, and let Asia worry about China and Europe worry about Russia.

      I have a feeling Russia is getting rich because of Europe – and why mess with making money?

      I have a feeling China is getting rich because of Japan – and why mess with making money?

      • Remember – these guys had 200 million people slaughtered in war over the last 100 years.

        I do not think they are too eager for a repeat.

        • I think you completely underestimate the capability of some leaders in this world to continue the carnage. You don’t when it comes to the US leadership, so why do you cut the ohters such a break?

          You are making assumptions here for which we do not have sufficient information to KNOW.

          • The war is over – and the people remember the suffering – which is why Germany and France founded the European Union – to bury the sword between them.

            The Russians people are still scared by the war.

            The Chinese remember the carnage of Mao, they too aren’t eager for war.

            Of course, JAC, anything can change it. But the scars are deep – but who knows after 100 years? The US didn’t last 100 years from the carnage of the civil war to start again too….

      • Black Flag,

        I agree with your comments. I don’t think it’s our job to defend Europe and many other countries around the world. That’s their responsibility. We don’t have the money to do it and I don’t think it’s in our best interests.

        We don’t need to go back completely to isolationism but we can remove most of our forward deployed troops and equipment from around the world. See my post number 21.

        • Defend them from who? Europe is enroute to becoming a Muslim majority, and they are doing nothing to stop it.

  38. The thing is who are we second guessing???? If I punched you in the nose then said wait a minute…I made a mistake I don’t want to fight…with blood streaming down your face you are gonna pull off both my ears. Since when is war not war? Since Vietnam! Our leaders have no business sending people to war and expecting them to play by a different set of rules than their enemy. War is war! It is awful, it is ugly, people die (warriors and innocents). But if a decision is made to go to war then go to win.
    Human shield??? Hum I personally would not allow some one to use me to shield them while they killed another…so I have a hard time believing in innocent shields. Maybe there are but my mind does not work like that.
    War is war there is nothing civil about it…never has been….it is just that some people want to make war a civil engagement.
    If you and I are gonna fight and I say ok here are the rules….no hitting below the belt, kicking, scratching or biting, and I am the only one that obeys those rules, I am fixing to get a royal thumping. Rules of engagement are only if both sides play by the rules…when the rules are broken it should be no holds barred.
    We either need to fight to win (in which case the war would have been over years ago) or we need to tuck tail and run!
    As for the Taliban being innocent…no way! If I buy you a gun, a car, a mask knowing you are going to rob a bank I am as guilty as you are…supply the money or the means and sorry you are just as guilty as the perp.

    • Amazed

      The thing is who are we second guessing???? If I punched you in the nose then said wait a minute…I made a mistake I don’t want to fight…with blood streaming down your face you are gonna pull off both my ears.

      Then you are a brainless brute, and you’ll be dragged into the sewer and killed (eventually).

      …because you have think you got punched in the nose for no reason – and only the truly ignorant would believe that.

      If you can’t think why someone is angry at you – you’re in deep trouble surviving life.

      Since when is war not war? Since Vietnam! Our leaders have no business sending people to war and expecting them to play by a different set of rules than their enemy. War is war! It is awful, it is ugly, people die (warriors and innocents). But if a decision is made to go to war then go to win.

      Which is why the USA is doomed to lose.

      If you and I are gonna fight and I say ok here are the rules….no hitting below the belt, kicking, scratching or biting, and I am the only one that obeys those rules, I am fixing to get a royal thumping. Rules of engagement are only if both sides play by the rules…when the rules are broken it should be no holds barred.

      Because war is not murder, but political force, rules were made to attempt to put civility to it.

      Such ignorance in the realms of war will ensure barbarians win.

      You and your children will not survive the barbarians

      We either need to fight to win (in which case the war would have been over years ago) or we need to tuck tail and run!
      As for the Taliban being innocent…no way! If I buy you a gun, a car, a mask knowing you are going to rob a bank I am as guilty as you are…supply the money or the means and sorry you are just as guilty as the perp.

      Then you agree that Cuba and Venezuela have a right to bomb Miami.

      • BF: Then you agree that Cuba and Venezuela have a right to bomb Miami.
        I don’t know do they??? Cuba and Chavez are not innocent by any means. Does the US have the right to attack them back and wipe them off the map?? Everything is not just cut and dry….I wish it were. For years the nations went to the spoilers…the biggest and badest with the largest army. Lots of governments carried that mentality into the 20 century.
        It is a very complicated issue…but like I said you can not punch someone in the nose and then say wait…I don’t want to fight. Isn’t that what would happen if we pulled out of afganistan? You either fight to win or don’t fight.
        In the same token I do not believe that a government that is big enough to stop a bully from killing their own people or invading other people should just stand back and let it happen either (thus embargos) But a military force invading another country should be a last resort. But if that choice is made….get in, get it done and get out. War is not a game.
        We are not privy to all the info we need to second guess the decisions that are made. We get just a little bit of the big picture. ALL governments act that way they feed the people just enough info to get their support. I think they call it JUSTIFICATION. In the end it all boils down to he said, she said, he did….ect. The end result is always the same WAR IS HELL.

      • Ahh…BF…Cuba and Venezuela have a right to bomb anybody they feel is a threat or a perceived threat. I don’t agree with this premise but it is the reality.

  39. bottom line
    “The Allies, however, at Potsdam, created the doctrine of “Unconditional Surrender” – an aberration in of itself, by the way”- BF

    An aberration out of necessity. We were stretched pretty thin. They weren’t gonna surrender unless there were conditions. We weren’t in the position to concede to their conditions. I think it had a bit to do with piece of mind that they were truely down for the count for good. No angles.

    The justification is backwards. If we were ‘thin’ then accepting surrender with terms would have been even more desired – it would free up millions of men and their resources.

    We were in a strong position to accept conditions. We were winning. It would have saved lives.

    The threat of invasion by Russia did indeed weigh on Japan’s decision. Only because it was better to surrender to the U.S., rather than end up split in two like Germany.

    No one knew that would happen (what happened to Germany). Japan would be different too – any split of occupation would have centered in mainland Asia, not on the islands themselves.

    They were waiting to see how things played out, while also trying to save face and get whatever they could out of any deals. They knew what the threat was but still tried to push their luck. They should have just accepted the offer.

    They did accept – but with one condition. I can’t see ‘what luck’ pushing they did.

    Review your perplexing reasons. The Japanese are not a strange people. Therefore, there is more behind the story then what school taught you.- BF

    Oh c’mon BF. School didn’t teach me? I KNOW you can do much better than that.

    You offer the same propaganda over and over again – in spite of 70 years of information and documentation. What do you expect me to say?

    Perhaps I am evil, but I would have responded by dropping #3 on Tokyo with the word “UNCONDITIONAL” painted on it.

    No, that would have made you a barbarian.

    From the teachings as far back as Sun Tzu, one must allow the enemy to surrender. To defeat an enemy by not fighting is the greatest skill.

    Unconditional surrender only makes your enemy fanatical. He has nothing to lose. It is a stupid strategy to demand such non-terms.

    The US Secretary of State had refused to see the Japanese Ambassador repeatedly in the days prior to Dec. 7th – on purpose.

    The SoS knew the Japanese had to commit to action at some point. – BF

    Look back a little further than a week. In the decades leading up to Pearl harbor, Japan had become desperate. They were at war with China and had little oil. Stalin’s forces were an ever growing threat. Britain had dumped them for us. They were isolated and desperate. We made countless offers to them in regards to the oil embargo, as FDR was against it in the first place.

    Your documentation, sir.

    Here’s mine.
    McCollum Memo – October 7, 1940 – Strategy to provoke Japanese Response

    http://rationalrevolution.net/war/mccollum.htm

    FDR acted on, and completed, every recommendation.

    When our carriers were moved to Hawaii from San Diego, Japan took this as a threat and decided to pre-emptively attack Pearl Harbor. Their bad. They made a cricial error in judgement.

    Again, you have to update your documentation.

    Admiral Richardson protested the move vigorously for a number of reasons, including his opinion that Pearl Harbor was not adequately defended against air and naval attack. When Admiral Richardson appealed to President Roosevelt he was overruled for political reasons. Richardson continued to press his opposition to the move and was subsequently relieved of command and replaced by Admiral Husband Kimmel.

    But, note, the top-line cruisers were NOT sent – they were held back, and only the rust-horses were sent. The carriers – as you recall – were pulled out of Pearl prior to the attack.

    All that remained were rust bucket targets. Sacrificed for FDR’s war plan.

    See Stinnett’s excellent book, Day of Deceit: The Truth about FDR and Pearl Harbor for a detailed record and documentation.

    October 16, 1941, Secretary of War Henry Stimson wrote in his diary: “We face the delicate question of the diplomatic fencing to be done so as to be sure Japan is put into the wrong and makes the first bad move — overt move.”

    Then, on November 25th, 1941, the day before FDR’s administration sent an ultimatum to Japan’s ambassadors, Stimson wrote in his diary: “The question was how we should maneuver them [the Japanese] into the position of firing the first shot….”

    Even in the Philippines, MacArthur, fully aware of the attack on Pearl, kept his air force on the ground – even as he knew the Japanese were coming to attack.

    However, due to bad weather over the Island of Formosa—the location of the airbases from which the Japanese were to launch their bombers and fighter planes against the Philippines—the initial air strike on the American protectorate of the Philippine Islands was delayed for several hours.

    Expecting an imminent attack by the Japanese and armed with the knowledge of the Pearl Harbor attack, prudent actions by those in command in the Philippines should have alleviated the chance of a total surprise attack in the Philippines, and the initiation of proper defensive, if not offensive, operations could possibly have saved the Philippines. However, the failure of General Douglas MacArthur, the commander of United States Army Forces Far East (USAFFE), to initiate these and other actions directly led to the defeat of the American-Filipino forces in the Philippines during the initial phases of the Second World War, causing thousands of American and Filipino military and civilian personnel to suffer through years of brutal captivity at the hands of the Japanese.

    One of the greatest strategist in history – did not move. Completely and totally improbable unless aware of a grander strategy.

    • Wow, BF…you are the cat’s meow on conspiracy theories. I will give you that. I hope that no one is taking you seriously. I have read stinnett’s book…..it is a great rewrite of fact and fiction. Tom Clancy of that era. It was masterfully crafted and is entertaining.

      • D13

        McCollum Memo was the clincher, but there is much more documentation now available under the FOIA begins releasing these and other memo’s.

    • bottom line says:

      BLACK FLAG

      This all started when I said:

      The use of a repugnant, repulsive, revolting, detestable, appalling, execrable, obscene, calamitous, opprobrious weapon stopped WW2. Many more would have died if Trueman hadn’t been so humane as to incenderate them instead. Bad weapon put to good use.

      In response to you:

      Third, an immediate use of a repugnant, repulsive, revolting, detestable, appalling, execrable, obscene, calamitous, opprobrious weapon on innocent people – men, women and children!

      The arguement: That is the most detestable – and much disproven – piece of propaganda in modern history.

      My response:

      The use of a repugnant, repulsive, revolting, detestable, appalling, execrable, obscene, calamitous, opprobrious weapon indeed stopped WW2.

      Wednesday August 9th, 1945 Nagasaki, Japan 11:02 A.M.(JST) BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!!!(21KT) Approx. 65,000 innocent defenseless Japanese men, women, children, and babies get incenderated at 540,000F/300,000K.

      Tokyo Bay – September 2nd, 1945 USS Missouri – Mamoru Shigemitsu signs Japanese Instrument of Surrender.

      Many more would have died if Trueman hadn’t been so humane as to incenderate them instead. Bad weapon put to good use.

      http://www.afa.org/media%5Cenolagay%5Csson3.asp

      http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/giangrec.htm

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Downfall

      http://www3.niu.edu/~td0raf1/history261/why%20we%20had%20to%20drop%20the%20bomb.htm

      http://www.cfo.doe.gov/me70/manhattan/potsdam_decision.htm

      http://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/library/report/1986/WLT.htm#

      http://www.carnegieendowment.org/publications/index.cfm?fa=view&id=17323#

      • bottom line says:

        I will finish this argeunemt ltaer becuaes Im’ stratnig ot gte tried. llo

      • Your documentation merely are apologies for slaughter, sir.

        Purposeful and directed killing civilians – regardless of whatever rationalization you want to reach for – is murder.

        Worse, in the case of Japan, wholly unnecessary.

        Worse still, demonstrated the USA is barbaric.

        Worse even still, created the conditions which threaten humanity.

        • bottom line says:

          BF – Your documentation merely are apologies for slaughter, sir.

          BL – It’s not about sorry, Mr. Flag.

          BF – Purposeful and directed killing civilians – regardless of whatever rationalization you want to reach for – is murder.

          BL – Murder? Murder is an appropriate word. Sure, Okay.

          BF – Worse still, demonstrated the USA is barbaric.

          BL – Again, Okay. Sure.

          I think you may be missing part of the point. In warfare, You HAVE to adopt a reptillian mathematical means to an ends bottom line type of thinking. Not many will dispute the horror of war. Of course it’s murder. That’s the whole point. It’s a way to resolve an otherwise irreconcilable conflict of interest.

          Hypothetical example: Times are REAL tough. Everything is dysfunctional. EVERYONE is out of work. There is food shortages and folks are begining to starve. Criminal activity is on the rise. A VERY desperate armed man with little mouths to feed decides that he is going to take from someone else. He teams up with other deperate armed men willing to do the same. They pick your house. You are almost as desperate as they are, with mouths to feed as well. They don’t surround you and demand, but instead use surprise. They bust through windows and doors. There is NO negotiation. They mean to kill you over a few canned goods and a gallon of purified water. Wa-da-ya-do? Do you…

          A: Try to negotiate.
          B: Fight
          C: Flight

          The answer is B.

          A – You have nothing to negotiate. Cooperation means your children’s starvation. You don’t have enough to share. You refuse to join them in their crimes. It is risky and immoral. You die trying to steal. A is not a real option.
          C – running away yeilds the same result as cooperation. You return home later to an empty pantry. Your babies still go hungry.

          B – when you hear glass breaking and the first few rams into the door(unless they use a vehicle), You and the Mrs. grab the assault rifle shotgun and pistols and proceed to fire at will. They die. Your children eat. Theirs starve.
          Was it murder? well not exactly, but you did kill someone. Did it hurt to have to do such a thing? Yeah probably…you are human. Was it just a bad thing all around and in general? yeah, horrible…what a tragedy. Is it sad ad unfortunate that their babies will likely starve as a result of you shooting them? Yep. Does it suck that you have to clean up a big mess on top of all the other problems that you already have? Yeah. So? All irrelevant bullsh*t.

          The bottom line is kill vs die. Period. A solution to an otherwise irreconcilable conflict of interest. Justifiable homicide.

          BF – Worse even still, created the conditions which threaten humanity.

          Nah. They were already there. Nuclear proliferation would have happened anyway. Scientific discovery argueabley created the conditions.

  40. Hi

    I just heard on our local news, that another local boy died this weekend in Afghanistan. He worked at the Scolaris right down the street from us. I understand instead of 8, it was 9 that died, including our local.

    Judy

  41. G.A.Rowe, it is interesting to read how you gentlemem argue about 9/11, I a veteran of WW2, U.S. Marine, female, I completely against war, but if attacked, we must respond, my son not in military believes 9/11 known by Bush, but I didn’t, but when he told me about the intact wallet left by Atta, Cia supposely found, I begin to wonder. But I do agree, when in a war women and children are only minor difficulties. Kill if necessary, that is why I could never be in combat, in 1947 when I served, we were not sent overseas at that time. But now, young women are and they will be killed if necessary. But war is utter HELL, and should not be started so easily, but when Saddam had rape room, and all the other stuff, Muslims do not value women in any way, kill women if not accompanied by a man. I am anxiously awaiting the return of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, I believe the Bible 100%, people argue with me about how true it is, so many years, I JUST SAY THIS IS MY CHOICE, please me have my choice and if it is wrong, it will be my failing. I enjoy reading all your stories, hope mine is ok. God Bless all who are about the destruction Obama is doing to the country. Now Fox news has article where in Dec. this yer FCC will be regulating the bloggers, and the internet, will be interesting, ?????????????

    • Goldie, I find it interesting that when I click on your name it links directly to Fox News.

      Just curious if that is intentional . . .

      FYI – I have said it before and I still mean it . . . No one is more against war than I am, yet I believe that I am intelligent enough to know that there are times when war is necessary, and we have the misfortune to be living in one of those times. I also believe that if a war is to be fought, then fight it with everything in your arsenal – fight it to win it at all costs. After the war is fought, then, and only then allow the politicians to win the peace.

      Don’t give up your faith, not for anyone or any reason.

    • The Bible has not been wrong yet….hang on Goldie.

  42. D13

    But I do feel there would have not been a surrender without the consultation of the Russian Forces and I think that Poland and the East still would have been ceded away.

    My argument against that: it was Poland that caused Britain and France to go to war in the first place.

    At the end of WW2, I believe there was an expectation that the Victory Powers would return to pre-war borders. Only as post-war mutual machinations and suspicions caused Russians to renege on the withdrawal – and was met, of course, by the Western Powers digging in and not withdrawing either.

    I, personally, do not believe UK/France/US would have tossed Poland to the Russian – but, (shrug) to save a war? Maybe… they did Czech, didn’t they?

    Germany’s industrial capacity was not yet destroyed at that time but I also do not think that the breakup of the Italian, Japanese, and German alliance would have pushed the Germans to quick surrender. Hitler’s Generals did not have the brass ones at that time.

    Let’s assume that the Germans still lost at Kursk. I think after that they would know the end is near – given that with the early Japanese surrender, another 1.5 million troops would be unleashed upon them.

    It think the German government would seek favorable terms with the West- with or without Hitler’s approval – given the disaster that the summer of ’44 would come with the fresh Siberian divisions hitting the front.

    On top of that, I believe the West might be extremely concerned with the surge of these forces from the Manchurian front:

    – The 5th Red Banner Army – Far East Military District.
    – The 2nd Red Banner Army – Soviet Far East Front.
    – The 1st Red Banner Army – Russian Far East.
    – The 17th Army – Formed from the 1st Army Group of the Transbaikal Military District, Eastern Forces.
    – The 24th Army and 25th Army – Russian Far East
    – The 35th Red Banner Army – Soviet Far East Front.
    – The 36th Red Army – Russian Far East.
    – The 39th Red Army – Russian Far East.
    – The 41st Army – Siberian Military District.
    – The 50th Army – Siberian District.
    – The 53th Army – Siberian District.
    – The 58th Army – Siberian Military District

    Now, not all these forces would have been redirected West – but even a partial relocation would have been severely threatening – effectively doubling the Russian combat troops for engagement against Western Allies.

    With the threat of Japanese attack – these forces were effectively pinned down in the East.

    If Japan surrendered early …. Germany would have crumbled maybe a year, year+half earlier??

    But….(shrug)….

    The 1940’s and 50’s would have been the same result anyway for Eastern Europe because we were war weary and had no
    stomach for a fight.

    So were the Russians….

    But an interesting debate….

    • Isn’t hindsight great? if I were the Chinese, I would have redirected east…not west. I would have pinned the Russians down on the Manchurian side and taken Korea immediately…in 1944. we would not have stopped them. I do not think that China would have stayed an ally with the Japanese gone…they would have solidified their position..and who knows, hit Japan? (That one is a stretch for me). As you said, interesting debate. I do believe that they would have, with our tacit approval (good old Chang, yeah right), pinned the Russians. Think about that for a minute. China redirects west…pins Russians, takes Korea…all the way to the south China Sea…Takes Taiwan…consolidates. If that happened, then there would have been no iron curtain, I think, and no division of Germany. France was out of it, Poland would have been independent because it would have not been necessary to negotiate with the Russians, they had no bargaining power with China moving west….British and American rule in Germany and no cold war in that scenario. The Czech’s probably would have become an ally of the west at that time.

      But…20/20 hindsight….and a lot of what ifs….was not the reality but also nothing reminiscnet of a conspiracy either. Decisions made at the time with limited intelligence..in the brain and on the ground.

      • One thing that I do believe has been pointed out….the United States has been too nice. We still underestimate the Oriental and Islamic minds set. We play too nice even today.

        • Millions of civilian dead in South East Asia….

          Million civilian dead in Iraq and Afghanistan….

          …and you don’t think that is enough.

          Egads 😦

          ora pro nobis

      • D13

        Isn’t hindsight great? if I were the Chinese, I would have redirected east…not west. I would have pinned the Russians down on the Manchurian side and taken Korea immediately…in 1944.

        Chinese were decimated by the Japanese, and wholly relied on Western material.

        They wouldn’t have had much more than rocks to fight with….

        we would not have stopped them. I do not think that China would have stayed an ally with the Japanese gone…they would have solidified their position..and who knows, hit Japan? (That one is a stretch for me).

        But with what? Their industry was obliterated, they had no arms other than what was delivered by the US and UK.

        After the war, Nationalists – armed by USA did a civil war with Communists – armed by USSR. Without the armaments of either side, the civil war would not have happened – either one or the other would have cake-walked.

        As you said, interesting debate. I do believe that they would have, with our tacit approval (good old Chang, yeah right), pinned the Russians. Think about that for a minute. China redirects west…pins Russians, takes Korea…all the way to the south China Sea…Takes Taiwan…consolidates. If that happened, then there would have been no iron curtain, I think, and no division of Germany. France was out of it, Poland would have been independent because it would have not been necessary to negotiate with the Russians, they had no bargaining power with China moving west….British and American rule in Germany and no cold war in that scenario. The Czech’s probably would have become an ally of the west at that time.

        Yeah, I can see that – arm Chinese and counter weight Russians … but only if FDR was NOT in the White House, which he was until late ’44. He would not have caused Stalin any problems.

        So, Stalin may have still moved another 3 million west, and shocked FDR and thrust through Europe….

  43. bottom line

    BF – Your documentation merely are apologies for slaughter, sir.

    BL – It’s not about sorry, Mr. Flag.

    “Apologies” in this context means “reaching for excuses”.

    BF – Purposeful and directed killing civilians – regardless of whatever rationalization you want to reach for – is murder.

    BL – Murder? Murder is an appropriate word. Sure, Okay.

    BF – Worse still, demonstrated the USA is barbaric.

    BL – Again, Okay. Sure.

    I think you may be missing part of the point. In warfare, You HAVE to adopt a reptillian mathematical means to an ends bottom line type of thinking. /

    You miss the point of warfare – it is not genocide nor slaughter.

    It is the use of violence to enforce a policy.

    Slaughtering the other side wholly fails in accomplishing this (unless the policy is slaughter)

    Not many will dispute the horror of war. Of course it’s murder. That’s the whole point. It’s a way to resolve an otherwise irreconcilable conflict of interest.

    That is why we use soldiers. It is one government enforcing itself on another government. Slaughtering civilians is murder and any nation who rationalizes murder in this way will be destroyed.

    Hypothetical example: Times are REAL tough. Everything is dysfunctional. EVERYONE is out of work. There is food shortages and folks are begining to starve. Criminal activity is on the rise. A VERY desperate armed man with little mouths to feed decides that he is going to take from someone else. He teams up with other deperate armed men willing to do the same. They pick your house. You are almost as desperate as they are, with mouths to feed as well. They don’t surround you and demand, but instead use surprise. They bust through windows and doors. There is NO negotiation. They mean to kill you over a few canned goods and a gallon of purified water. Wa-da-ya-do? Do you…

    That is not war, sir.

    They are not a government, and neither am I.

    A: Try to negotiate.
    B: Fight
    C: Flight

    The answer is B.

    Or C.
    Or A.
    Or D.
    Or E.
    Or F.
    Probably G. except if H.

    …and so on.

    A – You have nothing to negotiate. Cooperation means your children’s starvation.

    Why? I know how to grow food, and hunt.

    Let me help you.

    You are misusing hypothetical argument.

    They cannot be used to prove an argument.

    They are used to explain an argument.

    You are trying to prove your argument here – by creating a bizarre, incredibly unlikely scenario, while totally restricting options to your already predefined set – in an effort to prove your point.

    But none of it is true.

    The bottom line is kill vs die. Period. A solution to an otherwise irreconcilable conflict of interest. Justifiable homicide.

    To kill an attacker is justifiable.

    To slaughter your neighbors while doing so is murder and excusing it is disgusting.

    BF – Worse even still, created the conditions which threaten humanity.

    Nah. They were already there. Nuclear proliferation would have happened anyway. Scientific discovery argueabley created the conditions

    Perhaps.

    But this is the situation …. those that use the weapon FIRST will always be known as the barbarians.

    • bottom line says:

      Mr. Flag sir,
      I offer my appologies for my delayed response. Been kinda busy ’round here taday.

      Instead of spending countless hours debating the ever branching and cluttering/muttleing arguments about details of everything WW2 to make my point…I instead offer a more generalized articulation.

      By the time the bombs were built and ready to drop, We(mankind/human race) were all worn out. I think it’s fair to say that every and all parties involved in WW2(the whole world) were completely exhausted. All parties had their own forms of desperation. None were really in the position to give too much more…Including the U.S.(How much longer can we, or should we, endure?). Our decision to use the bomb was as much about time as anything else. Our primary objective was to win A.S.A.P. Stop the war NOW. We(USA) knew we had them(Japan) either way. They knew it too, but it was gonna take a while through conventional means and alot of people were gonna die regardless. We weren’t in a position to concede to their conditions. They were in an even less position to make demands of us. Aside from the pacific theatre shifting to our favor, they had the added pressure of Russia “bear”ing down on them. Japan wanted to negotiate unacceptable terms with us with the dual purpose of stallin'(pun intended) and/or circumventing Russian invasion. They wanted their cake and to eat it too. We said: Nope. Sorry. No more bullsh*t. We’re tired. This ends now. Surrender or die… They chose death. We took the fastest route with the least estimated casualties, and dropped the bombs. Japan had a moment of clarity and decided that Russian invasion vs US invasion and their(Japan) demands for conditions were completely irrelevant. They changed their position, wised up, and surrendered.

      THE END.

  44. Thank you Mr.Rowe for answering, I am truly discouraged today, 80 more killed Afganistan, not one news site said anything about it even Fox, I watch Fox a lot but as Obama is the most dedicated domestic terrorist we have had since I was born, 85 years ago, I wonder what will ever happen to take him out. If this was a declared war, he would be first to go, but his Secret Service stated his threats have increased over 400% since he took office. At last a few are realizing he is an evil person, his voice, I never listen to, I use the mute button on him, daily. As he is on all the time. Hilters eyes shook his people up, and some would never look into his face. Today Obama gave white doctor coats to some visitors, he said were doctors, but who knows, they could have been actors. Trust this utter fool, NO<NO<NO< I do not trust him, I wouldn't even let his people doctor my dogs. Dropping the nuclear bomb on Japan was fine with me, 4 years of war, lets finish it as soon as possible, a cruel way to go, but I too was concerned about the loss of human life, but when I think of all humans that are killed daily, war, floods, earthquakes, disasters, tornados, I think God has a place for all, He will judge all in the End and then we will see just where we all fit in. God Bless all who are concerned enough over USA to post concerns. goldie

  45. Too much blood has been spilling in Afghanistan as well as in other countries whether it is non-Muslim or Muslim lands. And the USA with its murderous tool the CIA and Pentagon war machine has been very active to make massive damage to 3rd world countries in order to make them unstable and then dependable on the US itself. But they might have succeeded in Afghanistan who people they murder to get rid of the Soviets and armed the Mujahiddin who are hitting back at them (i.e the Taliban). So it is a very stupid decisions for the Omaba and his generals who want to send yet more soldiers to Afghanistan; US and NATO cannot win this war and will never be able to sabdue the Afghan people and in particular the Pasthun people. No wander then that the US military has been gone for 8 years now to hunt the Khurasan people who happen to be the Pashtun on the both side of the illigal Durand line. Best weapons and plenty of cash is the answer for the US to persue its goal in the world but for the Muslims all over the world and in Aghanistan it is not money nor this life but their faith i.e Iman and that is their weapon.

    So the Pentagon may develop new tactics and make more money to bribe some Pashtuns but in the end it is the same Pashtun who will turn their back on the real enemy – US military along with NATO; these coward capitalists only seek dominance but they will not get it. And 9/11 was only a red button to be pressed in order to start a new phase for the New World Order. Therefore Afghanistan had to be invaded and it did get invaded but none other than the freemasonic Uncle Sam; however, Uncle Sam made a big mistake; he invaded the lands of Pashtuns who are exactly situated in the Khurasan region. And this Pashtuns are the ones along with others will march all the way to Jerusalem and with its leader – Imam al-Mahdi bring justice to the world and this same Imam al-Mahdi will kill Al-dajjal (anti-crist) with the help of Isa p.b.u.h (Jesus p.b.u.h).

    So don’t get the whole picture to dark-painted in your head or seeing your military being the no1 and is kicking Taliban asses; that is not true and though you can drop heavy bombs on us, we still come back and still coming back stronger and stronger and all praise is due to the Real Creator of the whole universe – Allah. And the Taliban are Pashtuns who fight the US/NATO evil allience and also fight the puppet Pakistani army who is eating dollars.

  46. the picture of the taliban killing a muslim woman a pic out of the movie the kite runner :d

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