Re: Ever Since Jeremy Bradley

Date: Wed 30 Apr 2003 - 17:39:55 GMT

  • Next message: Keith Henson: "Re: Ever Since Jeremy Bradley"

    > > Hey Guys
    > > Don't blame me for starting this. I wanted to talk about memetic
    > > ice-cream flavours.
    > Lol ;)
    > > There are indeed many places, Zimbabwe, Myanmar, Iran, Syria,
    > Libya, > the Sudan and North Korea prominent among them, where people
    > are > denied basic human rights and political representation. We
    > should > indeed be in favor of doing what we can to help them achieve
    > these. Of > course, different situations with different countries
    > are amenable to > differing means, but there are many worse and less
    > altruistic ambitions > one can have than the ambition of working to
    > liberate the oppressed > and enslaved of the world, to be free to
    > choose the course of their own > lives and the selection of their own
    > preferred memes from a free > personal and informational market of
    > alternatives. > Oh, yes: Haiti had no oil, but now Duvalier is gone.
    > Serbia and Bosnia > had no oil but now Milosevic is gone and Karadzic
    > and Mladic are out of > power and in hiding. And if you had a gun to
    > the head of Hitler in 1935 > and knew what the next ten years would
    > bring if you didn't pull the > trigger, how would you explain your
    > principled nonaction to the families > of all the Holocaust dead?
    > There are always exceptions to rules: these > exceptions do not PROVE
    > rules (that is a misquote of Aristotle), but > PROBE the scope and
    > parameters of rules by means of their status as > exceptions.
    > Yeah I think the difference is that the realpolitik of all this is
    > obscured when the claim is made that freedom (a late comer it has to
    > be said, in the I-word war warm up) is the cause (not China, not N
    > Korea, not Saudi, not large parts of Africa etc.). The US is decidedly
    > not doing a world audit and building a list of places that need
    > sorting out.
    > There _is_ anyway a valid threshold for intervention where there is no
    > threat to other nation states; such as was (rather late in the day)
    > seen to have been surpassed in Rwanda/Burundi. Bosnia was a
    > hand-wringing mess for 10 years, where we stood and watched ethnic
    > slaughter on a huge scale because we (esp. Europe) wouldn't commit
    > significant force. We only bothered with it at all because it was _in
    > Europe_ (roughly equivalent to Mexico having a huge war - I think the
    > people might start getting twitchy between Texas and California).
    > Kosovo (the media friendly bomb fest that didn't actually remove
    > Milosevic anyway) was partly about Clinton too. We should have
    > intervened in Bosnia anyway (hard, and early) because several of the
    > fragments of yugoslavia had been recognised as states by then (through
    > yet more realpolitik - Germany recognises Croatia, Britain gets a euro
    > opt out, others recognise other bits in response etc.), so making it a
    > conflict between countries (fair game).
    > As for Hitler; he should have been squashed the moment he put troops
    > into the Rhineland. Territorial breach -> war. Simple. Something else
    > to blame the French for (une plaisanterie, mes amis).
    > The Duvaliers were allowed to operate for so long they formed a mini
    > dynasty, then were eventually kicked again partly because of Clinton's
    > own political situation and partly because it was so grim for so long
    > so close to the US.
    > There aren't a whole helluva lot of examples of virtuous intervention
    > beyond those two are there? Maybe Somalia, a couple of others (I'm
    > struggling). There sure are a lot of the vested interest kind left to
    > list though. Allende is a name that springs to mind. The way Italy was
    > run from 1945 up to the last few years (CIA/mob carve up basically) is
    > another great one. Then there's all the stuff Britain and the other
    > Euro powers did of which Suez was kind of the last hurrah - often much
    > more brutal than anything the US has managed, just long enough ago
    > that all the participants are dead...
    > To close can I just add that my objection is solely to a bag of
    > policies and those that promote them, not to any creed, people or
    > state per se.
    > Cheers, Chris.
    Hokay. I would just like to point out that the US had to play dirty pool with friendly dictators in order to effectively contend with the Soviet bloc in the world arena, where they were doing the same thing in spades. Once their totalitarian hegemony crumbled, that unfortunate necessity was removed, and our post-Soviet interventions have been mainly about toppling despots and providing needed humanitarian aid. Virtuous interventions (or attempts at them in the third case, or urging and support for them in the last one) since then: Bosnia, Kosovo, Somalia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Haiti, Panama, East Timor. Also notice that the majority of these were in assistance to, and not in oppression of, Muslims.
    > ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    > Chris Taylor (
    > »people»chris
    > ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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