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BenThere
9th May 2005, 18:22
Isn't it enough, yet? Murderous thugs, with the support of their sovereign government, continue to kill, rape and devastate defenseless civilians by the thousands.

To all of you who suggested the UN is the only legitimate generator of international military action when the subject was Iraq, what in hell are you waiting for in Darfur?

You have handcuffed the, as you say, idiot and liar: Bush and Blair, from taking any action that could be construed as unilateral. Yet you sit back and silently allow this to happen, even as we celebrate the anniversary of the destruction of the tyrants of WW II. The UN has done nothing, and there hasn't been a peep from those champions of humanity, France, Germany and Belgium, as during the nightmare of Rwanda.

This is what happens when we leave it to you, the proud proponents of humanist Eurotopia. The killing goes on and on and no one seems to care unless they have some trumpeted cause, or can hammer at the US and Great Britain for being interventionist. You despise and distrust US motives, but do nothing, not even advocate, for the desperate civilians being massacred.

If you tell me this is how the world should be handling the problems of its tyrants and murderers, I'm not impressed. Your ideals are empty without the commitment to act forcefully when necessary, as it so clearly is now.

SmilingKnifed
9th May 2005, 19:24
British and American Intelligence have been well aware of the situation for long before it hit the media. The simple, though cold, answer is that western powers stand to gain absolutely nothing from intervention in Africa. There would be no increase in global influence and absolutely no public support, even in light of Sudan's links to the 'terrorists' that your administration seems so obsessed with. Even more so following the disastrous American foray into Somalia.

I'm not saying it's right, but it's a fact for the time being. Only a determined resolution from the rest of the world, under UN leadership will bring any change. As for the commitment to act forcefully, I agree, but not unilaterally, not as a world bully-boy under a dubious banner of freedom and not under the leadership of someone who would struggle to place Sudan on a map, let alone put together an effective foreign policy to deal with the crisis.

flapsforty
9th May 2005, 19:28
<Moderator hat off.>

Mr BenThere, it is indeed an appalling state of affairs and I salute your indignation about it's continuance.

I believe that your point about the handcuffs does not quite reflect the true state of affairs though. Lack of intervention in both Darfur and for example Zim, to my mind mainly reflects the lack of percieved threat to the West (financially or security wise) posed by these situations. Nothing to do with handcuffs.

On a very personal note, should I have to choose between having to send my husband or child to Africa to save the local population with the possibility of either of them getting killed in the process, or to keep them right here, I would choose the latter.
Not very noble but there you have it.
Unless the sovereignty of one's own continent and the freedom of it's citizens is threathened directly or indirectly, the sending of troops takes more guts that I personally posess.

Why American & British citizens put up with having their loved ones sent to Iraq to get slaughtered is a great and enduring mystery to me.

Dead_Heading
9th May 2005, 19:42
No offense here falps, but our armed forces have a job, they know what they signed up for, and they do a fine job. If you're in the forces, you signed up, you knew what it involved and accepted the risks.

87 UK troops have been killed at the current date, and 1,502 US soldiers. (in Iraq)

Boney
10th May 2005, 00:14
The UN should just supply the Sudanese with drilling equipment.

If they manage to find a decent oil well, the US will intervene tomorrow.

For all Bush's manic rantings about "Freedom" and "Liberty", the complete lack of interest in what is happening in Sudan and Zim is a disgrace. It just proves that unless there is significant financial gain to be made, the US couldn't give a stuff.

Is "Freedom" and "Liberty" conditional that it is only important on ground sitting on top of large oil reserves? It certainly appears that way!

If there is such thing as judgement day, Bush and his War Pig mates are going to get a real shock when they pass on.

BenThere
10th May 2005, 00:32
Boney:

Dude,

There is oil in Sudan. If the US had moved troops there, you'd have been all over it. I put a lot of the blame on you.

If you and the millions like you who are so myopic about anything the US does would look at reality, you might see that everything America has done is not evil, and with some support Bush might have been able to pressure the Sudanese more effectively. You, however, would have been there with your "War Pigs" rant regardless of the situation.

The fact that so many share your view has closed off a potential avenue of justifiable military action on behalf of these unfortunate Sudanese, and you are accountable 'if there is such a thing as judgment day'. And it is you who doesn't give a stuff.

SmilingKnifed
10th May 2005, 01:01
Inside the Wire (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/4523825.stm)

BenThere,

I'm keen to hear your definition of justifiable military action. The justification from your government so far seems to be the that the ends justify the means and if you're not with us then your obviously with the 'terrorists.'

Boney
10th May 2005, 01:49
BenThere

I have heard it all now.

People such as myself who opposed the illegal war in Iraq (ie. the majority who live on this planet) have now being blamed for inaction in African problems. Unbelievable!

Can you not see the hypocracy in invading Iraq (yes it was an invasion, not liberation) yet the killing and violation of human rights continues in Sudan and Zim and yet the country that prides itself on being the champion of "Freedom" and "Liberty" doesn't really care?

It is not the US's responsibility, I am sure you will agree on that one. It is the worlds responsibility. However, like in Iraq, when there is money to be made like raping the invaded countries resources, the US says, "out of the way UN, we are taking care of this one".

You don't have to be too smart to see through the scams.

Ps BTW, you say it is me that doesn't give a stuff. My Mrs is African (2yrs here) and alot of my friends these day are also, some from Sudan. One thing I can tell you, is the vast majority of them wouldn't trust Bush as far as they could throw him.

I wonder why?

XXTSGR
10th May 2005, 02:13
The hypocrisy of the question is astonishing. From one of the great defenders of non-UN action in Iraq, from one of the people who attacked the UN and supported the sidelining of the world's only assembly, you now ask why they don't do anything? From a country which has refused to pay anything towards the UN for years? From a country which is systematically trying to undermine the authority and standing of the UN SecGen?

And nowhere in your post is the suggestion that perhaps the world's most powerful nation might take a hand in it?

BenThere
10th May 2005, 02:27
Hey,

You win! I was saying those nasty US 'means' aren't wanted in the big, wide world. I'm asking you what you are saying to the 300-400 people we can expect to die tomorrow. Start out with "We kept the US off your back, so now here's what we're going to do....."

The UN didn't do anything in Kuwait, Bosnia, Kosovo or Iraq, so the US did, with the help and support of numerous allies in each instance. Now, it seems that, except for Australia and a few other countries, there is a political price to pay for supporting the US in using those means.

Now, there is an 'end' to be achieved in Darfur, and, since you've neutralized the US' willingness to offer its 'means', it's incumbent on you to do it the way you think it should be done. My question is: What are you going to do?

By the way, XX, who told you that whopper about UN funding? Do a little research. And Boney, anyone who truly believes the US has made any money in Iraq, or ever expected to, just astonishes me.

UN Contributions: http://www.globalpolicy.org/finance/tables/reg-budget/assessedlarge04.htm

XXTSGR
10th May 2005, 02:30
And Boney, anyone who truly believes the US has made any money in Iraq, or ever expected to, just astonishes me.So Halliburton are there out of the goodness of their hearts and are doing it all pro bono?

Flip Flop Flyer
10th May 2005, 10:36
The answer, BenThere, is sweet f.all. That's what "we" are going to do about it. It is a very sad fact of life North of the Med and West of the Atlantic, that goverments generally don't care what goes on in Africa, especially sub-Saharan Africa. Sure, every decade or so a "celebrity" will cry his or her heart out, organize a collection of some sorts and everyone goes fluffy hearted - even the politicians as they are ever mindful of leaning with the wind. But our dear politicians only pay lipservice, and once the fluff has passed, they go back to forgetting Africa.

Many of the problems facing not just Africa could be easily solved. Theoretically, that is. Basically it's about money, or the lack thereof. If we, as in the EU and US, discontinued our practice of paying a farmer double the price of his products, and removed the trade barriers then Africa would have a large range of reasonably priced agricultural products that could be exported for cash. And this is where the theory ends, because nothing points toward the proceedings of any export lining anything but the coffers of a few corrupt governments. The funds won't be re-invested in health care, infrastructure or education. Nope, it'd be stashed in an off-shore account and the corrupt government officials will fax orders to Mercedes, Gulfstream and Sony sending the money right back where it came from and thus not benefitting the local population.

So, with the bright clear sight of realpolitik, why should we engage in solving Africas problems? Why would we put "our" farmers out of work to benefit the African ditto, when we "know" that the money's going to disappear in corruption anyway?

Then there's the issue of eternal starvation and wars that have held Africa down for decades.

The thinking, as I see it, is somewhere along the lines of "they're corrupt and hell bent on killing each other. We may be able to temporarily fix a situation in one geographically isolated area, only for the same problem to crop up in another".

Recent history has showed, without any shadow of a doubt, that if "we" impose anything on, anybody it'll backfire and fail. Therefore, BenThere, the question is not what "we" should do to save Africa. The question is what will Africa do to save itself! Prove to "us" that you can govern yourself in an organized, democratic and fair fashion, then we'll step in with assistance. But if you insist on living in corruption, greed and war then we'll stay well clear!

BenThere
10th May 2005, 11:24
Well spoken, Flip, and I agree generally with that view. We're not going to end corruption and the cheapness of life in the third world with force or money. However, at some point, events cross a line, as they did in Rwanda, Bosnia, Cambodia wherever....But haven't in Zimbabwe, Togo, Cote d'Ivoire, Congo or Angola.

Now I say that line is crossed in Darfur. That is the line where, if we are civilized human beings, we can no longer stand by and allow the circumstances to continue. That line transcends sovereignty and it doesn't matter if there's oil, diamonds, religion or race to mitigate our motives.

What we do defines what we are. The UN is supposed to be the collective remedy, but somehow has lost effectiveness in most of these missions. It is too slow to respond and ineffective where it does. The UN allowed and watched Srbrenica. Its peacekeeping only works when supported by the people and power on the ground at the site of the trauma.

Americans like me are annoyed at the spending of our blood and treasure to be the last resort obstacle to tyranny and murder, only to create a broad set of critics like Boney, whose view seems to prevail in Europe these days. To criticize the US, impugn its motives, without offering an alternative solution is easy and seems to be popular.

That many people would think the US has given nothing to the UN for years is very telling. It shows not only ignorance of the facts, but betrays a motive to undermine perceptions of America propagandistically. As with pre-Mandela South Africa, Israel, and other pariahs of the left, all the good information is supressed while the negative is paramount and damning.

Boney
10th May 2005, 11:48
BenThere

There are millions and millions of critics like me. But honestly, would do you expect. You must admit, this whole Weapons of Mass Deception lie was a bl00dy joke.

This single scam has done so much damage to your great country's credibility that may take a generation to fix. The people of America should have demanded this idiots resignation. Instead you vote him back in with an even bigger majority - that is down right scary.

But back to Africa.

Let me state again - Africa's problems are not the responsibility of the US. I will not be one to blame the US for inaction, yet get angry when there is action. Just peeves me off that you need to be sitting on an oil well before something happens. If the oil well is bigger enough, all of a sudden you have have weapons of mass deception???

As earlier stated, I have many African friends. They do not like to talk politics because it makes them sad.

They are sad that every single one of them has lost a friend or relative to HIV.

Thye are sad cause they know there are small towns back home where there are 200 kids under 15 but only a couple of dozen adults - the rest are dead.

They are sad that the rest of the world doesn't really care.

They are sad that the US has spent 180 billion on this scam war in Iraq but can not work out some way to help bring down the costs of drugs to help the victims of this terrible disease.

They are sad that US drug companies continue to make huge profits but do not care that so many people are suffering because of lack of access/price to effective drugs.

Bring this stuff up with these guys/girls and a look of profound sadness and silence comes over them - I guess they figure, no point talking about it as the world in general doesn't give a rats ar$e.

Flip Flop Flyer
10th May 2005, 11:55
Ultimately, the UN does not make war - it perserves peace. Making peace is not something the UN is geared for, at least not when the making of peace involves beating the warring parties at their own game.

You will also need to recognice that the UN represents the whole world, not just Europe and the US. What we perceive as the right way to live is not universally shared around the world, and every single government have their own agenda. If you want to improve the reach, effectiveness and power of the UN then first you'd have to make every single nation agree on that. And where do you draw the line?

Imagine that a majority in the UN outside the US and EU decides that cars can only consume x litres of gas per mile, effectively outlawing SUVs. For the world as a whole that'd be a rather good idea, preserving what oil reserves we have left yet allow people to drive private cars. Do you think that'll go down well in the US or, to a lessor extent, Europe?

The analogy I'm trying to make is that we cannot impose our will on others, just as well as others cannot impose their will on us. If you want the UN to be the worlds policeman, the ground rules must be agreed to by all involved parties. It's a honourable goal, but one which is currently not achievable.

What it takes for peace to be brought to Darfur is a handful of powerful nations to bring about peace, then pull out and hand it to the UN to keep the peace. But as I said initially, noone is particularly interested in sending their sons and daughters to be killed in Africa, and thus establishing peace in that area will have to come from within. The UN may impose sanctions, but it'll be up to individual member countries to enforce them. Guess who'll be monitoring Darfur?

As for US and fees due to the UN. Yes, the US has paid a proportion of their debt but not, far from, all of it. One of the petty excuses has been unpaid parking fees in New York by UN officials. I'm trying to think up an analogy, but words fail me. To boil it all down: You can either have a very strong UN, but you'd have to suffer the consequences when decisions goes against you. The US, in recent times, does not seem to appreciate that fact. Or you can have a weak UN, one that is constantly being undermined by the current US administration - but then don't come bitch that the UN is ineffective. It's either or mate; you can't have your cake and eat it!

Omark44
10th May 2005, 12:03
In the North you have the capital Khartoum and the majority Muslim population.
In the South you have the non Muslim population who nomadically roam, (as they have done for years, thousands of them), over the South.

In the South you do have mineral wealth, including oil. Sent to the South you have militia who are backed by the North to move on, by force, the nomadic residents of Souterhern Sudan for a promised share of the mineral wealth, once they in the North can get their hands on it.

Let us not try and develop this argument beyond it's natural geographic, political and religious boundaries. For years the Khartoum administration had free reign, through terror, over the South and no one bothered, much. As soon as their gravy train started to get cut off through the South naturally rising against the oppresssive North then the North responded with brutal force, using militia where needed.

There are parallels in history, Nigeria is a classic example, the degenerate West used the devout Muslim North to quash their percieved 'enemies', the Christians, in the East who just happened to be sitting on all the oil.

How about we try and view some of the Worlds problems without assuming the wicked West is automatically anything to do with it?

P.S. Hand up all those who have actually been to and stayed in the Sudan?

Dave Martin
10th May 2005, 13:15
Flip Flop Flyer,

Well said.

As a further point on that, part of the reason why we may be reticent about getting involved in Darfur is our current war has antagonised the Muslim world (and the western world) to such a degree that any intervention on our part that is seen to attack Islam will just be one step further back in this "war on terrorism" (if you believe such a thing).

It is precisely because of Bush, Blair, Berlusconi, Howard, Aznar et al that we are in a position where the general public will not stomach further intervention.

Now, if we had taken this through a more moderated approach of the UN in the first place we might not be in this situation.

On the subject of UN fees - each country pays in proportion to it's wealth. Essentially it is a small tax on each person relative to their purchasing powere and as such is a very fair fee to be paid. I don't hear many other western nations refusign or complaining their contribution which at the end of the day is very little (I think the core functions of the UN cost each year the same as the entire US military budget for one day). It is a little sickening seeing the US suddenly start coughing up it's debts when it needs help - kind of like expecting an insurance company to come to your aid even though you never paid your bill for years.

Omark44
10th May 2005, 13:38
Dave Martin, you and those who agree with you are simply fooling yourselves, no one else.
There was a cessation of hostilities in 1991 and Iraq was told to get it's house in order, it failed to do so, miserably. In 2003 hostilities were resumed, no need for any further UN agreement, only a polite gesture to ask, agreement had been provided in 1991. As has since been seen since many parts of the UN structure are themselves totally corrupt, why would you want to bother with them, they have no creditability outside the third world.

Darth Nigel
10th May 2005, 14:07
Documented in various places (not just on raving looney websites) that the US State Department over the years has had as a matter of policy the circumvention of the UN.

Daniel Patrick Moynihan (US Ambassador to the UN during the 1975 East Timor debacle): "The Department of State desired that the United Nations prove utterly ineffective in whatever measures it undertook"

I have read similar quotes from Robert McNamara (Secretary of Defence during the Cuban Missile Crisis) -- I have the book at home and I'm at work now which is why I'm not PPruNing -- but I'll dig the quote out later this week.

So it is somewhat disingenuous to accuse the UN of being ineffective, when the semi-covert policy of many :mad: US Administrations has been to ensure that fact.

bear11
10th May 2005, 14:57
To those of you in the UK who wish to point the finger at the UN for this awful mess - look to your own house first. "Sudan" was historically a number of independent nations. It wasn't the UN or the US who took the place over with the Egyptians and made a "country" of it until the mid 50's, when it gained independence. As soon as independence came, there was a civil war between the North and South, and they've been knocking seven shades out of each other since. Pick practically any "country" in Africa or the Middle East and you'll find a place with nonsensical borders drawn with a ruler by someone who wouldn't know and care of the difference between Tutsi and Hutu, or Shia, Sunni and kurd, etc, etc, etc. It's the legacy of colonialism, pure and simple, and any amount of finger pointing in other directions doesn't undo the damage that was done long before the UN and US even existed to blame.

Curious Pax
10th May 2005, 15:12
I'm sure there must be a world hotspot that doesn't have a gin soaked Brit with a map and red pencil in the 1800 or 1900s somewhere near the source of the problem, but I'm b*gg*red if I can think of one!!!

Dave Martin
10th May 2005, 16:00
"cessation of hostilities in 1991", "told to get it's house in order", "failed to do so"

Oh, come on.

"As has since been seen since many parts of the UN structure are themselves totally corrupt". Same can be said about almost any state or organisation of its size. Democracy doesn't work well....doesn't mean that we should just ignore it.

And I think you'll find the UN maintains more credibility than the US and UK at the moment. The UN not conforming to your norm of how the world should be is more an reflection on your own views.

tony draper
10th May 2005, 17:21
I'm supprised the cousins don't tell that lot in that cesspit on the Hudson to pack their bags and go set up shop in some west African Swamp.
I hear they never pay their bills,cut off the gas water telephone and electricity,see if anybody actually notices they are missing.
:cool:

2R
11th May 2005, 00:34
Where are they getting all the weapons ?
And why do you think that the weapons made in the laogua's are being sent there ?
Do not expect a straight answer from the UN as many of the members of the UN undermine it with absolute impunity ?
and only quote the UN when it suits them.

N380UA
11th May 2005, 08:40
This may well come over as cold and harsh but that's how feel and I suppose many other around the world as well.

I have subscribed to CNN breaking news email alert to stay informed of the daily news while at work. Just a few minutes ago I received a breaking news alert of some car bombs going of in several locations in Iraq with some 46 dead and scores injured.
Reading the news I asked my self, who really finds this so important that it has to be classified as breaking news or who is even interested at all to be supplied with such information, especially on a daily basis as it were?

If these idiots down there see the need to blow themselves up every other day rather than to find a consensus in a decent civilized manner amongst them than so be it, let them! It really has no impact or effect on my daily life so I have no feelings towards the situation there.

The same applies to other nations in Africa or other continents. The "western civilized countries" have in past as well as currently trying to help these countries by and with other then military means. At times stabilizing an area of conflict, at least for a while, but they just don’t learn and keep on banging their heads in.

In terms of development aid Eurotopia, as BEN THERE likes to call it, has been on the forefront, investing a lot of manpower and cash. But I guess if Eurotopia wont join the good 'ol boys from the USA Hartland, under the guidance of Charlie Heston and Mr. Dubya in shooting at other people and nations just to impose their will, then we are to be considered as cowards? Perhaps you just wanna stick to your "freedom fries" then! Ya'll go out there shoot up the world and do what ever you want just don’t expect Eurotopia to foot the bill or clean up after you.
:yuk:

tony draper
11th May 2005, 08:51
Why not? the cousins footed the bill for the last time Eurotopia fecked up and layed waste to itself.

N380UA
11th May 2005, 09:18
The cousins didn't foot the bill in Eurotopia after the last feckup, they merely "loaned" the cash. Eurotopia (the darn Krauts, Frenchies and all the others) had to pay it back in form of reparations and other means.

BenThere
11th May 2005, 14:33
N380UA,

I'd like to find out what was charged and what was paid. Can you point me to where you got the accounting? And at what monetary value are the lives lost accounted?

And I guess what happens outside your life's milieu doesn't affect you. Well then, what happened to the Jews and Gypsies, and is happening to black Africans in Darfur never did and never will impact you in the least. Good for you! Have a nice day!

airship
11th May 2005, 16:09
Let's face it, 1st World man has lost his taste for battle. Though we still appear to know what looks right from wrong, we no longer have the stomach for a real fight. Even if we still had sufficient children in order to bring up one to be a soldier, another to join the clergy etc. etc. The ways in which we wage our wars today, using weaponry controlled remotely, of overwhelming and often indiscriminate destructive capability is more often than not counter-productive. In doing so, we may safeguard our own soldier's lives but do little to take the fire out of the enemy. Because only rarely do our enemies today see the whites of our eyes before meeting their maker.

Instead, we've come up with a couple of great phrases to qualify those who seek to flee their own regions for our own for whatever reasons (but all bad). They've simply become either economic migrants or else mere refugees. And all of our political parties are more than pleased to be able to satisfy our cravings in this respect, whilst ignoring the sources of the problems and our own cowardice.

If we were real men today, perhaps we would be found at the halfway mark between the African continent and the Canary Islands? To cheer onwards and welcome all those who've risked their lives and demonstrated their resolve and bravery in making it halfway. And perhaps to throw wreaths across the waters in remembrance of those who didn't quite make it that far. As opposed to imprisoning all economic migrants including those who've merely made the jump across the channel because they wanted a farmhouse and a few acres more than they had back in Blighty? :}

Wars anywhere have always had an economic or at least an anti-social aspect haven't they? Yet in Africa, a continent until just recently coveted by most of the 1st World, we deign, more often than not, to blame wars there on savage dictatorships or tribal conflict. We appear to be all too ready to discount the economic aspects. Or that the source of funds to carry on wars over there may be somewhere in the 1st World. Real men might endeavour to identify these unscrupulous individuals and sort them out, they could use Mossad techniques (everyone could turn a blind eye). ;)

When ordinary people finally decide that an African's (replace with whatever else fits) life is important enough that they're willing to send a 1st World gladiator, (because that's what they'll have to be), out there, soldiers who will see the whites of the eyes of their enemies before wiping them off the face of the earth, that'll be the day that our 1st World values and culture begin to replace the other rotten ones... :ok:

Until then, I look forward to continuing to engage in various discussions such as this one on Darfur for the forseeable future... :sad:

N380UA
11th May 2005, 20:41
Hello Mr. Ben There „I’m so self-righteous I’m too good for the rest of the world“. Retributions were paid by France for liberation until the mid 60s by Germany until the end of the 90s; Italy to mid 70s… the list goes on. In fact up until today as Gulf One was in majority paid by the Germans, other Europeans and Japan. Go ahead… look it up… it wont hurt.

And I guess what happens outside your life's milieu doesn't affect you. Well then, what happened to the Jews and Gypsies, and is happening to black Africans in Darfur never did and never will impact you in the least. Good for you! Have a nice day!

Yup! Just about… but go on, shootem up! Have the blast of your life down there! Good for you! Have a nice day

Send Clowns
11th May 2005, 21:04
I think I can answer Flaps, as a former serviceman who lost a friend in Iraq, in the early days. We can send them because that is why many of them signed up; because they believe they can do more good to others than they risk harm to themselves. The lads I knew were a mixed bunch, but they all were professional, wanted to complete a job they were given and were generally caring. In Britain there is a long history of sending our boys away, and always the assumption was that they were there for good reasons, even where some disagree.

I know the forces of your own country are the same, the Royal Dutch Marines work closely with the Royal Marines and have wanted to join them to help their comrades. Even in a very British conflict, in hte South ATlantic, the Dutch Marines expressed there disappointment at not joining them.

We really should send soldiers to Darfur. The UK is over comitted, as is the USA, but the EU has delusions of adequacy in strength of forces. Some must be sent, on a humanitarian intervention. In the Balkans everyone was too late - and it was the USA that finally shamed us all, lest her detractors forget. Learn the lesson; or is it true, that the only thing we learn from history is that we learn nothing from history?

Dave

So we cannot intervene because we have intervened before? Had we refused to then, surely we would have been forced into the logical extension of refusing to do so now? Surely it is an irrational response to the intervention that is to blame in what you claim; the response that the rectitude of a further intervention is related to a previous one. The isolationist media are largely to blame for this, rather than the interventionists.

N38OUA

You are talking about only a small part of the issue. The major part of direct costs of the war, of the British Empire and the USA saving mainland Europe, were never repaid. What was repaid was the cost of repairing Europe, on very reasonable terms. What has not been approached is the cost of peace. The USA has paid for the largest part of the costs of both the UN and of NATO, the two organisations that prevented further war in Europe so that the rebuilding of a continent could procede at all.

Dave Martin
11th May 2005, 23:04
Send Clowns,

Quite the opposite, I am all in favour of getting stuck in and doing something about this. My issue is this though -

1) Good old, American, "Shock 'n' Awe" coupled with liberal dosages of hypocracy, propaganda and self interest will not help. If we are going there for humanitarian reasons then make sure that is the only reason we are there. This shouldn't become an excuse to make Sudan a new base from which to engage in other military exploits. Sadly, I don't think we're up to the task (US and UK). Sadly also, I doubt if the "old Europe" armies got their act together and mobilised, the US would be too happy about them stealing the limelight.

2) Our involvement in Iraq is what has shot us in the foot. As much as the US and UK might like to enter Sudan for purely humanitarian reasons, the public is possibly going to be doubtful (Tony Blair having ANOTHER war?) and certain leaders in the Muslim world will be in a fine position to capitalise on yet more "anti-Islamic" wars being fought by us "crusaders". I'm not saying just because of Iraq we shouldn't, but in the sphere of international relations, Iraq has made it a near political impossibility.

Two world leaders in particular stand out as being responsible for this disturbing stae of affairs.

Send Clowns
11th May 2005, 23:14
Dave

Your post does not match historical precedent.

The US was not bothered about Europe "stealing the limelight" in the Balkans, why should they be in Africa? Or did you just make that up? In fact they seemed exasperated when they finally had to intervene themselves. You are wrong that we and they are not up to it - the problem is that if we did intervene at the same time as our current commitments, our forces would be dangerously overstretched.

It is not our involvement in Iraq that has shot us, it is that characterisation by parts of the media. It is the opposition to intervention. Why have muslims objected, when it is muslims' lives and freedoms that are being protected. It is the characterisation by the anti-war factions that are causing the animosity.

N380UA
12th May 2005, 13:32
What we are, in essence, talking about here, is a nations (peoples) willingness to go to war. In other words, a certain motivation (political, economical or dislike of the other, as von Clausewitz stated) is required to pick up a weapon and to stand in harms way.
During WWI and WWII the motivation was much different; indeed the situation is altogether not comparable to what we face today. Although one may say war is war and for a noble cause any means is justifiable.

Now in Dafur, none of these criteria's, for me as well as for flaps I guess, is met. Thus, I'm not jumping up, yelling hurray lets go to war!

I can understand and appreciate for any one to say that a certain situation is motivation enough for him to go to war - that's personal interpretation (if the guy who cries wolf is really the person going and not just sending others to do the deed) in Darfur, Somali Iraq or what ever area of conflict. What I can't understand is that I need to be necessitated to joint, on somebody else's say so see parenthesis above!

Should Ben There, or others with the same opinion be serviceman requesting to their government to go to Dafur, they shall have my blessings. Should their gov. not want to go there, I'm sure they can find a mercenary outfit where they can hire on.

Dave Martin
12th May 2005, 13:46
Send Clowns,

I suspect that the Balkans are a bit of an anomaly in that they are squarely in Europes sphere of influence and as each component part of the former regional entity is very small and weak, not particularly strategically important.

As much as we may dislike Clinton, he ran a very different regime from Bush.
When I say not being up to the task I am refering to our inability to actually get involved for humanitarian reasons.

Iraq is not a case of humanitarian intervention, just as Afghanistan is not. Who in their right mind would assume that US intervention in Darfur would be any different.

West Coast
12th May 2005, 15:50
"Sadly also, I doubt if the "old Europe" armies got their act together and mobilised, the US would be too happy about them stealing the limelight"

Sadly, its the other way around. Remember the French getting their panties all bunched up because the US brought a large physical presence to the tsunami relief effort? I do.


"As much as we may dislike Clinton"

An honest man at least. How many times I've seen Euro's lament the end of Clinton's Presidency as if he was Europes man in DC. Truth is he was hated, just not as much as Bush.