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steben
08-27-2013, 08:40 AM
What are our US and British friends here feeling in their own country?
I can only see the news. Do people talk?

Nickdfresh
08-27-2013, 09:55 AM
The last polls showed that 60% of Americans favored not getting involved. However, it seems that both the Demnocratic Admin and the Republicans in the Houses might be coming together on a limited strike designed to punish Assad rather than topple him...

Rising Sun*
08-27-2013, 10:12 AM
What are our US and British friends here feeling in their own country?
I can only see the news. Do people talk?

Not our problem.

Not our fight.

No point getting involved,

But we're in the midst of a mind numbingly boring national election campaign by mind numbingly boring contestants, who have suddenly taken an interest in Syria to make themselves look important, not least because Australia chairs the UN Security Council where Russia and probably China will veto any action against Syria, so why does anyone bother with the charade?

General response to our Prime Minister and Opposition leader getting mildly excited about Syria: No response, due to total lack of interest.

Hate to sound heartless, but what did America and Britain and the rest of the West do when Saddam gassed the Kurds, after the West encouraged them to rise up? And countless other examples of international indifference where strategic or self-interest issues didn't warrant military or any other effective or even ineffective action, from Cambodia to Rwanda to various other parts of the planet? The planet is full of oppression, misery, exploitation, cruelty, torture and wrongful death. What makes Syria special? Let the bastards sort it out themselves. If Assad wins the minority Alawites continue their domination. If not, the reverse occurs, as in Iraq. Why get involved in another conflict which, if left alone, may do no more than lead to a wider Sunni / Shia conflict among the harmonious follows of the Islam?

steben
08-27-2013, 11:38 AM
Not our problem.

Not our fight.

No point getting involved,

But we're in the midst of a mind numbingly boring national election campaign by mind numbingly boring contestants, who have suddenly taken an interest in Syria to make themselves look important, not least because Australia chairs the UN Security Council where Russia and probably China will veto any action against Syria, so why does anyone bother with the charade?

General response to our Prime Minister and Opposition leader getting mildly excited about Syria: No response, due to total lack of interest.

Hate to sound heartless, but what did America and Britain and the rest of the West do when Saddam gassed the Kurds, after the West encouraged them to rise up? And countless other examples of international indifference where strategic or self-interest issues didn't warrant military or any other effective or even ineffective action, from Cambodia to Rwanda to various other parts of the planet? The planet is full of oppression, misery, exploitation, cruelty, torture and wrongful death. What makes Syria special? Let the bastards sort it out themselves. If Assad wins the minority Alawites continue their domination. If not, the reverse occurs, as in Iraq. Why get involved in another conflict which, if left alone, may do no more than lead to a wider Sunni / Shia conflict among the harmonious follows of the Islam?

I understand your logic completely.
I guess the national election situation you are refering to is catalysed with the even more present media in the region than it was in the 80ties in Iraq. Saddam was a Western ally in those days ...
Most people don't see that the misery and oppression in Syria has not begun, it has grown.

Libya was a direct hit into a close oil supply causing instability of the economic future. No wonder even the Belgian Air Force (of all forces!) was active within weeks... before the US :neutral:


Recent polls in Belgium (only on internet!....) are 58% against involvement

pdf27
08-28-2013, 01:24 PM
The only clear and compelling interest we've got in the region is in making sure that various less than savoury people around the world understand that if they use chemical weapons, bad things will happen to them. Sadly the legal beagles will probably say that putting a guided nuke through Assad's bedroom window is against the rules, but I do feel it would illustrate the point quite nicely...

So far as the Syrian Opposition are concerned, they've failed to demonstrate that there is any major group that is protecting civilians from Assad and that we could assist in this task by providing close air support (the legal justification used in Libya, which while a bit elastic was actually fairly well followed). Until that happens any western intervention is going to be against Assad, rather than for any particular rebel group.

steben
08-28-2013, 03:54 PM
The only clear and compelling interest we've got in the region is in making sure that various less than savoury people around the world understand that if they use chemical weapons, bad things will happen to them. Sadly the legal beagles will probably say that putting a guided nuke through Assad's bedroom window is against the rules, but I do feel it would illustrate the point quite nicely...

So far as the Syrian Opposition are concerned, they've failed to demonstrate that there is any major group that is protecting civilians from Assad and that we could assist in this task by providing close air support (the legal justification used in Libya, which while a bit elastic was actually fairly well followed). Until that happens any western intervention is going to be against Assad, rather than for any particular rebel group.

Yes, that is a good summary.

I doubt Assad's sole responsability though. We all might ought to know that he is a central figure, but perhaps just that, in a ruling elite, rather than a pinnacle. And this is a system as seen in many dictatorships, where an elite backs a single man, but I rate Assad's role rather the other way around in Syria.
You might just eliminate the man, but I believe that setting an example to the whole regime is a far better choice.

steben
08-29-2013, 09:38 AM
A map on the B news site:
http://www.deredactie.be/static/2013/kaarten/130828_syriebondgenoten.jpg
hmmmm.... once they start making "info" like this....???? :neutral:
- They will pull out the UN-investigators a day sooner....
- Russia is strengthening fleet presence in the region....

Rising Sun*
08-29-2013, 10:15 AM
The only clear and compelling interest we've got in the region is in making sure that various less than savoury people around the world understand that if they use chemical weapons, bad things will happen to them.

Why?

What's so special about chemical weapons?

Or NBC weapons generally?

Would I rather die from various NBC weapons or being gut shot with a standard infantry long arm with subsequent infection taking a few weeks to die?

Why is it illegal to use dum-dums but not Claymores, canister, sundry air dropped nasty weapons flinging out lots of nasty bits, fragmentation grenades, shotguns which can cut you in half at very close range but not Barrett sniper rifles which can do it at maybe two thousand metres, and so on?

It is utterly nonsensical to proscribe some weapons as too cruel to use because they cause nasty deaths when the allowed weapons do exactly the same.

The issue in Syria is not, in my view, the alleged use of chemical weapons but their use against civilians and the suffering recorded among non-combatant children and other civilians. So what? That is exactly what the Allies did during WWII to civilians in Europe, and indeed even in friendly countries such as France, and Japan.

It is also exactly what the nations which were the Allies during WWII have been doing in various countries for some years until now, whether it be drone strikes or **** up raids on villages killing the wrong people.

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

steben
08-29-2013, 10:21 AM
Why?

What's so special about chemical weapons?

Or NBC weapons generally?

Would I rather die from various NBC weapons or being gut shot with a standard infantry long arm with subsequent infection taking a few weeks to die?

Why is it illegal to use dum-dums but not Claymores, canister, sundry air dropped nasty weapons flinging out lots of nasty bits, fragmentation grenades, shotguns which can cut you in half at very close range but not Barrett sniper rifles which can do it at maybe two thousand metres, and so on?

It is utterly nonsensical to proscribe some weapons as too cruel to use because they cause nasty deaths when the allowed weapons do exactly the same.

The issue in Syria is not, in my view, the alleged use of chemical weapons but their use against civilians and the suffering recorded among non-combatant children and other civilians. So what? That is exactly what the Allies did during WWII to civilians in Europe, and indeed even in friendly countries such as France, and Japan.

It is also exactly what the nations which were the Allies during WWII have been doing in various countries for some years until now, whether it be drone strikes or **** up raids on villages killing the wrong people.

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

What if the damage of such weapons reach further than the borders? Several incidents in history prove that local incidents rarely stay local. Lebanon? Israel? Jordan? Turkey?
And what about the fragmentation of the armed forces over there. Will there be a point in which it becomes complete chaos and each on its own? And what if the NBC weapons are used THEN?
God knows what some lower rank officers have in their mind...

In fact, it becomes more and more a discussion about the UN again and its purpose. Whether Russia and China agree or not is irrelevant, since western powers have shown in the past that they don't need their permission. Instead they showed to act as a nucleus - UN. Staring in 1950 (Korea), just 5 years after birth of the UN. The "de facto" UN forces over there simple rejected China's and Russia's opinions as if they both resigned as UN member. In other words, the definition of "UN" was rewritten by majority. Russia and China did not "unite" with the "union". And the Union that persevered acted on grounds of an "illegal intervention" of North Korea into the South. One can easily assume that the same principle can be rewritten nowadays. China and Russia are "resigners", using technical tools (veto) but not following the logic. The majority can push the logic forward again, making the regime an "illegal" aggressor into the freedom of the Syrian population.
The "red line principle" of Obama is just a principle of determining when to act, not why. No, it is not just about chemical weapons, but they produce the parameters of decision making. The situation is not to be taken lightly. One must agree that the real logic in the UN might already be in progress: the illegal oppression of the Syrian people is not new. It was, however, not broadly enough fed with "crossing the line". It is understandable that the UN nor any nation can react on every action foudn to be illegal in the world.

steben
08-30-2013, 04:54 AM
With Cameron struck down and low popular succes in the US, it will take some time again. At least untill the results of the UN inspectors.

tankgeezer
09-01-2013, 11:07 AM
The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent events in Syria and have therefore raised their security level from "Miffed" to "Peeved." Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to "Irritated" or even "A Bit Cross." The English have not been "A Bit Cross" since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies nearly ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from "Tiresome" to "A Bloody Nuisance." The last time the British issued a "Bloody Nuisance" warning level was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.

The Scots have raised their threat level from "Pissed Off" to "Let's get the Bastards." They don't have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.

The French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from "Run" to "Hide." The only two higher levels in France are "Collaborate" and "Surrender." The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France's white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country's military capability.

Italy has increased the alert level from "Shout Loudly and Excitedly" to "Elaborate Military Posturing." Two more levels remain: "Ineffective Combat Operations" and "Change Sides."

The Germans have increased their alert state from "Disdainful Arrogance" to "Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs." They also have two higher levels: "Invade a Neighbour" and "Lose."

Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual; the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels.

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

Once "sort of English" Australia, meanwhile, has raised its security level from "No worries" to "She'll be right mate". Two more escalation levels remain: "Crikey! I think we'll need to cancel the Barbie this weekend!" and "The Barbie is cancelled." So far no situation has ever warranted use of the last final escalation level.

Regards,

John Cleese ,
British writer, actor and tall person


And as a final thought ... Greece is collapsing, the Iranians (Persians) are getting aggressive, and Rome is in disarray. Welcome back to 430 B.C.

Rising Sun*
09-01-2013, 11:28 AM
In fact, it becomes more and more a discussion about the UN again and its purpose. Whether Russia and China agree or not is irrelevant, since western powers have shown in the past that they don't need their permission. Instead they showed to act as a nucleus - UN. Staring in 1950 (Korea), just 5 years after birth of the UN. The "de facto" UN forces over there simple rejected China's and Russia's opinions as if they both resigned as UN member.

No, at the time the USSR absented itself from the critical UN votes on the Korean War and the PRC (Mainland China) was not recognised as China while the ROC (Taiwan) was. The UN votes were legitimate under its rules.

steben
09-01-2013, 11:31 AM
The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent events in Syria and have therefore raised their security level from "Miffed" to "Peeved." Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to "Irritated" or even "A Bit Cross." The English have not been "A Bit Cross" since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies nearly ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from "Tiresome" to "A Bloody Nuisance." The last time the British issued a "Bloody Nuisance" warning level was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.

The Scots have raised their threat level from "Pissed Off" to "Let's get the Bastards." They don't have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.

The French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from "Run" to "Hide." The only two higher levels in France are "Collaborate" and "Surrender." The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France's white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country's military capability.

Italy has increased the alert level from "Shout Loudly and Excitedly" to "Elaborate Military Posturing." Two more levels remain: "Ineffective Combat Operations" and "Change Sides."

The Germans have increased their alert state from "Disdainful Arrogance" to "Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs." They also have two higher levels: "Invade a Neighbour" and "Lose."

Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual; the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels.

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

Once "sort of English" Australia, meanwhile, has raised its security level from "No worries" to "She'll be right mate". Two more escalation levels remain: "Crikey! I think we'll need to cancel the Barbie this weekend!" and "The Barbie is cancelled." So far no situation has ever warranted use of the last final escalation level.

Regards,

John Cleese ,
British writer, actor and tall person


And as a final thought ... Greece is collapsing, the Iranians (Persians) are getting aggressive, and Rome is in disarray. Welcome back to 430 B.C.

I must agree
It's funny

steben
09-01-2013, 11:33 AM
No, at the time the USSR absented itself from the critical UN votes on the Korean War and the PRC (Mainland China) was not recognised as China while the ROC (Taiwan) was. The UN votes were legitimate under its rules.

I stand corrected, but still, do you think the Korean War would have been just an idea if USSR would have voted no?