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Sat Jan 19, 2013, 10:52 AM

So for what exactly are we supposed to be angry with the Algerians?

Granted that much of what we understand to have happened during this gas field hostage business may turn out to be wrong, but it would seems as if the Algerians brought a swift end to the crisis and probably saved a lot of lives. Hundreds of people held hostage at a gas plant? You think that didn't have the potential for some horrific bloodshed?

And again, it is early and we don't know all of the facts.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-21101092

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Reply So for what exactly are we supposed to be angry with the Algerians? (Original post)
arely staircase Jan 2013 OP
sendero Jan 2013 #1
arely staircase Jan 2013 #3
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #2
GeorgeGist Jan 2013 #4
ProgressiveProfessor Jan 2013 #5
arely staircase Jan 2013 #8
Igel Jan 2013 #6
arely staircase Jan 2013 #7
ProgressiveProfessor Jan 2013 #9

Response to arely staircase (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 10:57 AM

1. Plenty of people....

...are butthurt because they didn't ask our permission or for our stellar tactical information.

Maybe the Algerian leadership has about as much faith in our military leaders as I do.

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Response to sendero (Reply #1)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 11:01 AM

3. That seems to be my impression too.

eom

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Response to arely staircase (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 11:01 AM

2. I think it's the larger regional picture--apparently they've been reluctant

to cooperate with Mali and other countries in fighting extremists. They'll do it within their own borders, but have no problem with neighboring nations being weakened and destabilized by terror groups, because it helps them keep their supremacy in the region.

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Response to arely staircase (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 11:01 AM

4. Collateral damage ...

Is only OK when we're in charge.

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Response to arely staircase (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 12:56 PM

5. They probably went off half cocked in the eyes of the professionals

And given the body count the media will have to blame someone

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Response to ProgressiveProfessor (Reply #5)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 02:58 PM

8. but given the fact there were hundreds of hostages

wasn't the body count arguably low? (at least according to initial reports)

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Response to arely staircase (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:49 PM

6. It's not our way.

Out way: Negotiate first. Possibly pay ransom. Drag out the situation.

Esp. when "our people" are involved. Whatever the local consequence may be.

There may also be some faith in our boys being better at SWAT and commando tactics. Like having the Israelis at Entebbe instead of asking local troops to do the job.


As it is, the Algerians decided how to go about doing things on their own, on their own schedule, and in their own ways. So some of "our people" got killed. They didn't suck up to us and ask our help. They failed to do things in a culturally appropriate way, apparently. Which is to say, according to our culture. Colonialism lives, just in a way that we think isn't colonial at all.

Instead they did things culturally appropriate for their region, in a way that may have ended up hurting Westerners but which they believe will save more (local) lives.

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Response to Igel (Reply #6)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 02:20 PM

7. the criticism does have a wiff of colonialism to it

eom

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Response to arely staircase (Reply #7)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 03:11 PM

9. Algeria is not know for its excellence in things martial, which includes mass hostage rescue.

What is not clear if they had some coaching, did it on their own, or the deaths were unavoidable.

More will come out over time, presuming there is some semblance of a free press over there.

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