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Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:42 PM

Why are drone strikes any different than the bombing of Dresden?

Well I can think of one or two differences, but first let me say that one of my neighbors back in 1970 was a German woman who had survived the bombing of Dresden with her mother and a young brother. Frankly, the version I had up until then was the white washed version I had gotten in history classes. Here is an article on it for those who need a refresher.

http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/bombing_of_dresden.htm

My neighbor gave me a gut wrenching tale of a city, which at that time consisted of mostly of women, children and the elderly. Most of the men were gone either to war or had been killed. The city was full of refugees mostly women, children and the elderly. The allies came without warning. The Germans did not think they would kill civilians that were mostly women, children and the elderly. The allies bombed it mercilessly and there was so much collateral damage of women, children and elderly that it took them weeks to dig out all the bodies. The body count was astoundingly horrific. The reason we bombed it was that it was a factory city where weapons were also being produced by the Third Reich.

Well, let me explain the one or two differences I believe apply. For one we were at war with Germany. There was a front line and the enemy were all Germans, so killing women and children could probably be rationalized. What we are doing with the drones isn't so neatly compartmentalized. My neighbor's story in remembering was heart wrenching and she was only eight years old at the time. She believed that they had stopped making weapons and that the factories at the time were mostly idle. That is her opinion though and I haven't found anything to verify her report. Whatever, I find it to be a real blot on our history.

So by looking back at history, I just can't keep thinking that the drone strikes are right and necessary. They aren't right and will not help our cause in the long run. My mind keeps going back to the story my neighbor told me about Dresden and the saying that "the ends justifies the means". I don't think it's so. We know so little about these strikes even what we are able to find from foreign sources on the internet than we knew about Dresden from our history classes back then.

I think what we are doing is awful the results we gain not worth the karma we are accruing.

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Reply Why are drone strikes any different than the bombing of Dresden? (Original post)
Cleita Feb 2013 OP
hedgehog Feb 2013 #1
Robb Feb 2013 #6
hedgehog Feb 2013 #9
kelliekat44 Feb 2013 #220
dipsydoodle Feb 2013 #8
Confusious Feb 2013 #149
dipsydoodle Feb 2013 #159
Confusious Feb 2013 #160
rdharma Feb 2013 #163
Confusious Feb 2013 #185
dipsydoodle Feb 2013 #164
Confusious Feb 2013 #184
Taverner Feb 2013 #121
hedgehog Feb 2013 #148
aquart Feb 2013 #178
broiles Feb 2013 #2
Cleita Feb 2013 #7
rdharma Feb 2013 #11
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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:54 PM

1. There are theories that Dresden was bombed in revenge for the bombing of Coventry,

to punish German civilians for the war, to test a theory of that firestorms caused more long lasting damage than conventional bombing*, etc. The common factor is these theories is that civilians were deliberate targets or that consideration for civilians was not a factor at all. As with the fire bombing of Tokyo, there were people in the Allied forces at the time who speculated that these bombing were war crimes.

Civilians have been killed and injured by drones, but I think the case can be made that an effort has been made to avoid civilian casualties.

















*(As John Galbraith showed after the war, strategic bombing accomplished little in terms of winning the war.)

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Response to hedgehog (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:39 PM

6. IIRC the idea in both was also diverting resources.

One school of thought held that the "war machine" would slow down as resources were re-allocated to help civilians we'd bombed, as a higher priority than (and in lieu) of helping soldiers on the front.

In retrospect, it seems damn stupid.

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Response to Robb (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:06 PM

9. One result of the bombing was that people who lost their civilian jobs (say at a local bake shop)

because of the bombing were availible to work at munitions plants.

It also turned out that it didn't take long to rebuild rail yards.

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Response to Robb (Reply #6)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 12:12 PM

220. Try "no danger to those doing the bombing" for starters. nt

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Response to hedgehog (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:02 PM

8. It was to help prevent the risk of of an underground movement

being set up by killing the spirit of the civilian population. Dresden was a pottery centre with no military significance. The US bombed it daytime and the UK at night time. This was the result of that :





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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #8)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:23 PM

149. Wrong.

Dresden was described as "the industrial heartland of the Reich" in 1942 by ...........




Dum, dum, dum......


The economic council of dresden.

As far as Dresden being a militarily significant industrial centre, an official 1942 guide described the German city as "one of the foremost industrial locations of the Reich" and in 1944, the German Army High Command's Weapons Office listed 127 medium-to-large factories and workshops which supplied the army with materiel. Dresden was the seventh largest German city and by far the largest unbombed built-up area left and thus was contributing to the defence of Germany itself.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II#Military_and_industrial_profile

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Response to Confusious (Reply #149)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:43 PM

159. Your reading is selective

to say the least. I'll leave you to your own thoughts on the subject with which I disagree as do many others here. It was a war crime.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #159)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:46 PM

160. Really, I have a quote from the Third Reich about dresden

Describing it as part of the industrial heartland, with a specific number a factories helping the war effort,

and MY reading is selective?



Would that selection be anything that disproves what you or howard zinn say?

Must..... not... give..... up..... cherished...... beliefs..... about..... the..... evilness... of.... the... united... states.... it... has... never.... done.... anything... right.....

Yea, I see things in shades of grey, it's done wrong, it's done right.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #160)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:01 PM

163. MY reading is selective?

 

I don't know. But your veracity is.

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Response to rdharma (Reply #163)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:42 PM

185. Citations at the links

Only a fool doesn't believe evidence when it is presented to them.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #160)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:04 PM

164. Well I do have the slight advantage

of having the subject described to me in depth early '70s by a military historian. Nothing really excused the bombing of the city itself.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #164)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:40 PM

184. Yea that was 40 years ago

Things change. New evidence comes to light.

Should we stick with the knowledge of evolution from 40 years ago, or also add the the things we've learned since then, and drawn new conclusions?

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Response to hedgehog (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:25 PM

121. "As John Galbraith showed after the war, strategic bombing accomplished little..."

 

chill

up

spine

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Response to Taverner (Reply #121)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:44 PM

148. More here: it's worth knowing about:

As a member of the US Strategic Bombing Survey immediately after World War II, for example, the young economist was one of those charged with evaluating the effect of the Allied air campaigns against Germany and Japan. Against claims made for air power at the time (and against Pentagon assumptions that still privilege strategic bombing), Galbraith's team showed that neither enemy manufacturing capacity nor morale were significantly hampered by bombing.



Most unconventionally, the agency's report on the effects of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki concluded that "Japan would have surrendered even if the atomic bombs had not been dropped, even if Russia had not entered the war, and even if no invasion had been planned or contemplated." In 1945, Galbraith was left with a lifelong skepticism about bombing, which, alas, his country would not share.
http://www.johnkennethgalbraith.com/index.php?display=20&page=press

and if you have the time and interest:
THE UNITED STATES STRATEGIC BOMBING SURVEY

Summary Report

(European War)

September 30, 1945

http://www.anesi.com/ussbs02.htm

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Response to hedgehog (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 11:50 PM

178. Well, it certainly wasn't in revenge for the innocent civilians murdered in the camps.

Jews, gays, catholics, labor unionists, communists....

Millions of 'em, I hear. Vacant apartments everywhere. Guess they were too dead to die in Dresden with those other innocents.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:19 PM

2. Two books on this: Destruction of Dresden and Slaughter House Five.

Both are excellent reads.

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Response to broiles (Reply #2)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:44 PM

7. I've read Slaughter House Five a long time ago. I guess I should go back and reread. n/t

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Response to Cleita (Reply #7)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:47 PM

11. Slaughter House Five

 

My favorite Vonnegut work.

He was a Jewish American POW in Dresden.

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Response to rdharma (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:58 PM

15. German American Humanist....

From a long line of said same. Talks often about his Atheist Grandfather who did NOT recant on his deathbed.

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Response to broiles (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 08:19 PM

209. The only good consequence of the bombing of Dresden ...

... was Slaughterhouse Five (Schlachthof-5).

Many years have passed since I last read Kurt's Vonnegut's World War II satirical novel. I remembered the story as being 'anti-war', but that's probably as much because I was 'anti-war' in the early 70's as it was Mr. Vonnegut's intent.

Seeing this post I went to my unfailing source, Wikipedia, to get a synopsis. The novel is much deeper than my recollection.

Slaughterhouse-Five explores fate, free will, and the illogical nature of human beings. Protagonist Billy Pilgrim is unstuck in time, randomly experiencing the events of his life, with no idea of what part he will next visit.

Billy Pilgrim says there is no free will, an assertion confirmed by a Tralfamadorian, who says, "I've visited thirty-one inhabited planets in the universe. Only on Earth is there any talk of free will."

To the Tralfamadorians, everything simultaneously exists, therefore, everyone is always alive. They, too, have wars and suffer tragedies (they destroy the universe whilst testing spaceship fuels), but, when Billy asks what they do about wars, they reply that they simply ignore them. The Tralfamadorians counter Vonnegut's true theme: life, as a human being, is only enjoyable with unknowns. Tralfamadorians do not make choices about what they do, but have power only over what they think (the subject of Timequake). Vonnegut expounds his position in chapter one, "that writing an anti-war book is like writing an anti-glacier book," both being futile endeavours, since both phenomena are unstoppable.

Like much of Vonnegut's other works (e.g., The Sirens of Titan), Slaughterhouse-Five explores the concept of fatalism. The Tralfamadorians represent the belief in war as inevitable. In their hapless destruction of the universe, Vonnegut's characters do not sympathize with their philosophy. To human beings, Vonnegut says, ignoring a war is unacceptable when we have free will; however, he does not explicitly state that we actually have free will, leaving open the possibility that he is satirizing the concept of free will as a product of human irrationality.

This human senselessness appears in the climax that occurs, not with the Dresden fire bombing, but with the summary execution of a man who committed a petty theft. Amid all that horror, death, and destruction, time is taken to punish one man. Yet, the time is taken, and Vonnegut takes the outside opinion of the bird asking, "Poo-tee-weet?" The same birdsong ends the novel God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater.


We are taking a trip to the Galapagos this autumn - part of my preparatory reading was Kurt's eponymous novel, reread just a couple weeks ago.

Kurt was a great author, thinker, and humanist. I miss his continuing contribution to life's conversation.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:24 PM

3. So you want a formal declaration of war?

First, Congress abdicated its responsibility in that when they gave away their power to the Executive Branch.

Secondly, take Pakistan as an example. We are not at war with the country of Pakistan but we ARE 'at war', so to speak, with the mountainous regions of Pakistan. We have no legal machinery in place to declare war on a region.

I, for one, don't want us involved in ANY country's matters. But from the standpoint of those who think we should be involved, it's a much more complicated world than it used to be.

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Response to randome (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:32 PM

4. This is sort of my point. We aren't at war, so we shouldn't be bombing them.

Even the Israelis going after Nazi war criminals don't bomb the nation they kidnap them out of. What really bothers me is the rationalization of collateral damage.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:01 PM

18. I don't understand.

You're comparing bombing a city and wiping out tens of thousands of people to a drone strike?

You're trying to justify the Dresden bombing while rejecting an approach that limits the civilian casualties.

Remembering Bush, accurately
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022343435

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Response to ProSense (Reply #18)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:11 PM

24. Au contrare I'm not justifying it. I'm just saying if you are buying

into the collateral damage meme, there was a more justifiable reason than the ones we have for drone strikes we are doing today. No don't think it was right in any way because I don't accept collateral damage at all.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #18)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:14 PM

68. "limits civilian casualties"


Oh, well, so long as it LIMITS them...

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Response to sibelian (Reply #68)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:29 PM

151. Don't forget

how much they appreciate our limiting civilian casualties when they attack us for killing their families and friends.

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Response to theaocp (Reply #151)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:35 PM

153. Goodness, I don't know about you but I would be simply OVERJOYED.


"Sob...! Thank you, kind masters!"

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Response to Cleita (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:06 PM

21. Dresden was wrong even during a time of War

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Response to JI7 (Reply #21)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:12 PM

25. Yes, it was. It was shameful, which is what makes the drone strikes

while not seemingly as drastic equally as shameful.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:25 PM

165. We haven't had a declared war since WWII

But we sure napalmed the shit out of Vietnam. Korea was what, a "police action," I think they called it.

I call it war. You may not think we're at war, but I bet al Qaeda does.

Bake

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Response to Cleita (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:26 PM

166. It was wrong back then and it's still wrong. n/t

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Response to Cleita (Original post)


Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:35 PM

10. The Dresden bombing was intentional terrorism......

 

The city was packed with refugees fleeing the Soviets.

My late mother-in-law was on the outskirts of the city when it was firebombed. She was a young nurse (NS Krankenschwester) helping the refugees.

Dresden revenge for Coventry? Coventry revenge for earlier bombings of German civilian targets?

Shit .... it was "eye for an eye, tooth for tooth" ....... until all were blind and toothless!

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Response to rdharma (Reply #10)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:52 PM

13. So are these drone strikes IMHO.

They aren't just meant to terrorize anyone who might be suspected of harboring the Al Queda, never mind that some people didn't ask to be on the same street as them when the drone hits. They are meant to terrorize anyone who might be suspicious that an Al Queda is among them so they turn them into the authorities or at least that's how my tin foil hat theory is playing out in my head.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #13)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:24 PM

34. I agree.......

 

... it's just a question of scale.

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Response to rdharma (Reply #10)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:36 PM

155. No it wasn't

They dropped no more munitions on Dresden then they did other cities.

Dresden was an industrial center, so a legitimate target under the conventions which were created after WW2 covering air warfare. It was also a center for railroads that the Reich used to move troops around.

As far as Dresden being a militarily significant industrial centre, an official 1942 guide described the German city as "one of the foremost industrial locations of the Reich" and in 1944, the German Army High Command's Weapons Office listed 127 medium-to-large factories and workshops which supplied the army with materiel. Dresden was the seventh largest German city and by far the largest unbombed built-up area left and thus was contributing to the defence of Germany itself.



The city was mostly wood, lacked adequate fire protection, and was dry as a bone during the hot summer. That is why the city caught fire like it did.

Were the allies responsible for the weather? were they responsible for the inadequate fire protection? Should they have gotten weather report from the German before bombing?


The bombing of Dresden has been manipulated by Holocaust deniers and pro-Nazi polemicists—most notably by the British writer David Irving in his book The Destruction of Dresden—in an attempt to establish a moral equivalence between the death toll of Jews in German concentration camps and the indiscriminate killing of German civilians by Allied bombing raids. As such, "grossly inflated" casualty figures have been promulgated over the years, many based on a figure of over 200,000 deaths quoted in a forged version of the casualty report, Tagesbefehl No. 47, that originated with Hitler's Reich Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II

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Response to Confusious (Reply #155)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:59 PM

161. That is why the city caught fire like it did.

 

City densely built with wooden structures and thousands of refugees. Who would have known that firebombing would have caused mass civilian casualties?

Confusious, dude, you are one sick puppy!

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Response to rdharma (Reply #161)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:49 PM

187. Another straw man?

Can't seem to turn your head around here without bumping into them.

Did you read something that wasn't actually there?

I stated the facts.

Nothing more.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #187)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 06:27 PM

192. I stated the facts. Nothing more.

 

FACTS?!!!! No. You just did a "cut and paste". It's very similar to an article from the Air Force Association that tried to justify the firebombing of Dresden. If fact, if it's that same Air force Association Article, they were also trying to justify the civilian "collateral damage' that occurred during "Shock and Awe" in Baghdad.

Yes. Dresden had two fairly important rail facilities (Neustadt and the Central station) at the time. But there wasn't much else of "military importance" in the city.

The railway facilities weren't even marked on the British maps. And NONE of the manufacturing facilities, you mentioned in your cut and paste above, were on any allied bomber planning maps. Only a few manufacturing facilities were damaged .......and that was just the accidental result of the carpet bombing of the city center.

Dresden was one of the last major built up areas in Germany that had not been hit previously. And it provided "Bomber Harris" with exactly what he was looking for ........ a big built up area with lots of people in it which they could burn.




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Response to rdharma (Reply #192)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:16 PM

193. That article was wikipedia. It cites sources.

Obviously, you didn't read it. It cites sources. You don't.

Where are your sources?

Your opinion is not "fact."

"bomber" harris seemed to know the rail lines were there:

I ... assume that the view under consideration is something like this: no doubt in the past we were justified in attacking German cities. But to do so was always repugnant and now that the Germans are beaten anyway we can properly abstain from proceeding with these attacks. This is a doctrine to which I could never subscribe. Attacks on cities like any other act of war are intolerable unless they are strategically justified. But they are strategically justified in so far as they tend to shorten the war and preserve the lives of Allied soldiers. To my mind we have absolutely no right to give them up unless it is certain that they will not have this effect. I do not personally regard the whole of the remaining cities of Germany as worth the bones of one British Grenadier.

The feeling, such as there is, over Dresden, could be easily explained by any psychiatrist. It is connected with German bands and Dresden shepherdesses. Actually Dresden was a mass of munitions works, an intact government centre, and a key transportation point to the East. It is now none of these things.


So obviously, you're pulling shit out of your ass. i.e. "they didn't know about the rail lines"

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Response to Confusious (Reply #193)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:50 PM

204. History Channel - This Day in History

 

http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/dresden-devastated

Feb 13, 1945:
Dresden devastated

On the evening of February 13, 1945, the most controversial episode in the Allied air war against Germany begins as hundreds of British bombers loaded with incendiaries and high-explosive bombs descend on Dresden, a historic city located in eastern Germany. Dresden was neither a war production city nor a major industrial center, and before the massive air raid of February 1945 it had not suffered a major Allied attack. By February 15, the city was a smoldering ruin and an unknown number of civilians--somewhere between 35,000 and 135,000--were dead.



So obviously, you're pulling shit out of your ass. i.e. "they didn't know about the rail lines"

I never said they (the RAF) "didn't know about the rail lines" ....... I said that the British maps did not have the rail yards marked for targeting. They were just trying to firebomb they city.

The USAAF had the rail yards marked on their maps as intended targets. But they had NONE of the "factories" you mentioned above marked for targeting on their maps.

Friend, without going into my background, I've done a lot of research on this subject. You, on the other hand, are only parroting what you THINK you read on Wiki.

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Response to rdharma (Reply #204)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 08:01 PM

206. It's been a while since I would trust anything the history channel has

"ancient aliens" and such kind of turned me off.

I never said they (the RAF) "didn't know about the rail lines" ....... I said that the British maps did not have the rail yards marked for targeting. They were just trying to firebomb they city.


And? We firebombed a lot of cities.

They knew the rail lines were there, they knew the factories were there.


Friend, without going into my background, I've done a lot of research on this subject.


Yea, you could say that. But what have you read?

35,000 to 135,000 is a number put out by pro-nazi sympathizers. It's not true. It makes me wonder what else you think is "true" which is not.

The bombing of Dresden has been manipulated by Holocaust deniers and pro-Nazi polemicists—most notably by the British writer David Irving in his book The Destruction of Dresden—in an attempt to establish a moral equivalence between the death toll of Jews in German concentration camps and the indiscriminate killing of German civilians by Allied bombing raids. As such, "grossly inflated" casualty figures have been promulgated over the years, many based on a figure of over 200,000 deaths quoted in a forged version of the casualty report, Tagesbefehl No. 47, that originated with Hitler's Reich Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels.


18,000 with a high of 25,000 is the likely number.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/death-toll-debate-how-many-died-in-the-bombing-of-dresden-a-581992.html

From der spigel via Wikipedia, from historians.

You, on the other hand, are only parroting what you THINK you read on Wiki.


Wikipedia cites scholarly articles or original sources. You cite yourself. Sorry, not going to trust someone on the internet unless they cite scholar articles.

If you're so AWESOME, you should have some articles which you yourself have written and can cite!

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Response to Confusious (Reply #206)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 08:42 PM

210. Yea, we firebombed bombed a lot of cities.

 

Yes, but cities of strategic military value. Dresden was of no strategic value at the time it was firebombed. It was a terror bombing to demoralize the Germans and show the Soviets what Bomber Command was capable of.

Der Spiegel article is pretty close to the actual number of those killed. I think an accurate estimate would be between 25,000 - 30,000 killed. The German authorities originally estimated 35,000 killed. But many people originally reported missing, showed up later.

No. I don't believe David Irving's BS. He's not a historian, he's a fuggin' NAZI looney tunes propagandist.

Having said that, I also don't believe those who try to justify "Bomber Harris'" murderous action.

Guess who said this.......

"It seems to me that the moment has come when the question of bombing of German cities simply for the sake of increasing the terror, should be reviewed. Otherwise we shall come into control of an utterly ruined land. We shall not, for instance, be able to get housing material out of Germany for our own needs because some temporary provision would have to be made for the Germans themselves. I feel the need for more precise concentration upon military objectives, such as oil and communications behind the immediate battle-zone, rather than on mere acts of terror and wanton destruction."

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Response to rdharma (Reply #210)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 08:56 PM

211. You're just going to hold onto it no matter what

You cite a history channel "documentary" saying "35,000-135,000."

Now you say Der Spigel is right. Which is it?

That was Churchill, in a memo, which he withdrew, and issued a new one.

You forgot to say that. I wonder why?

"Bomber" harris's reply to the first memo:

I ... assume that the view under consideration is something like this: no doubt in the past we were justified in attacking German cities. But to do so was always repugnant and now that the Germans are beaten anyway we can properly abstain from proceeding with these attacks. This is a doctrine to which I could never subscribe. Attacks on cities like any other act of war are intolerable unless they are strategically justified. But they are strategically justified in so far as they tend to shorten the war and preserve the lives of Allied soldiers. To my mind we have absolutely no right to give them up unless it is certain that they will not have this effect. I do not personally regard the whole of the remaining cities of Germany as worth the bones of one British Grenadier.

The feeling, such as there is, over Dresden, could be easily explained by any psychiatrist. It is connected with German bands and Dresden shepherdesses. Actually Dresden was a mass of munitions works, an intact government centre, and a key transportation point to the East. It is now none of these things.


Dresden was a center for rail lines, communication lines and had 127 factories producing material for the German army. Taylor writes that an official 1942 guide to the city described it as "one of the foremost industrial locations of the Reich" and in 1944, the German Army High Command's Weapons Office listed 127 medium-to-large factories and workshops that were supplying the army with materiel.

So much for "Dresden was of no strategic value".

Churchill withdrew his memo and issued a new one. This was completed on 1 April 1945:

It seems to me that the moment has come when the question of the so called 'area-bombing' of German cities should be reviewed from the point of view of our own interests. If we come into control of an entirely ruined land, there will be a great shortage of accommodation for ourselves and our allies… We must see to it that our attacks do no more harm to ourselves in the long run than they do to the enemy's war effort.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II

Churchill never liked area bombing, so it's no surprise that he would revise his policy as soon as he could i.e. "The war was as good as won."

Having said that, I also don't believe those who try to justify "Bomber Harris'" murderous action.


Which means, you've decided it was a murderous action, and nothing will change your mind, no matter if the evidence shows that it was not a "terror action" that it was a "strategic target" that "hundreds of thousands didn't die," and/or that the fire was made worse because of poor preparation on the part of the Germans. ie. fire brigands and anti-aircraft.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #211)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 09:18 PM

215. Churchill withdrew original memo.

 

Because the deed had already been done and couldn't be undone. No use in getting into a public pissing contest with Harris after the fact. It would only have provided propaganda to the enemy and caused problems after the war.

How many of those 127 medium-to-large factories and workshops were destroyed in the firebombed area?

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Response to rdharma (Reply #215)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 09:36 PM

216. Got any holocaust pictures you want to post?

The attacks on Dresden effectively destroyed over 12,000 buildings in the city's old town and inner eastern suburbs. Among the military targets destroyed were the Wehrmacht's headquarters and several military hospitals. In addition, several factories were badly damaged or destroyed. Civilian deaths numbered between 22,700 and 25,000. Responding to the Dresden bombing, the Germans expressed outrage stating that it was a city of culture and that no war industries were present. In addition, they claimed that over 200,000 civilians had been killed.


On top of that, the rail lines and the communication lines were destroyed, which were the main targets.



Responding to the Dresden bombing, the Germans expressed outrage stating that it was a city of culture and that no war industries were present


Sounds familiar.

Besides, you don't have to destroy a factory to render it useless. Just kill the people who work in it, or destroy the means of transporting the goods, or both.

Both were done.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #216)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 10:32 PM

218. rail lines and the communication lines were destroyed

 

Nice red herring. But Dresden wasn't a big hub for transporting Jews to concentration camps.

Besides, stopping the NAZIs from transporting Jews to concentration camps was a very low priority for the allies.

BTW - There were a lot of Jews killed in the Dresden firebombing. Read up on it!

"Besides, you don't have to destroy a factory to render it useless. Just kill the people who work in it."

Do you think that mother and her infant twins in the baby buggy above were munition factory workers?

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Response to rdharma (Reply #218)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 08:33 PM

221. I didn't post that picture because they were transporting jews

I posted that picture because I saw through your pathetic attempt to appeal to emotion.

Do you think that mother and her infant twins in the baby buggy above were munition factory workers?


The father probably was. You kinda forgot about him. I didn't. Unfortunately, they got caught in the middle. Bad shit happens in wars.

The Russians lost 12 million civilians due to the Germans. Where's your sympathy for them?

I'm not sorry I don't feel bad for a few people that died in an attack because they supported a government that was so evil.

Monumentally evil.

An attack that was NOT a war crime, that had legitimate military objectives, that got out of hand not due to any amplified "terror" motivations, but because of the incompetence of the German government

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Response to rdharma (Reply #10)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 11:54 PM

179. Guess those refugees were afraid the Soviets might want revenge

for their mass murdered wives, mothers and children. Ya think?

Thought they'd reached safety and karma split its sides laughing.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:51 PM

12. I've been asking this question in relation to the assassination of

several world leaders and more than a few citizens. Reagan killed 5,000 people in Panama to get Noriega.

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Response to malaise (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:53 PM

14. Yes, he did and with all the on the streets reporting we were getting then, nary

a word was mentioned about the collateral damage going on.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #14)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:06 PM

22. Look Western governments have slaughtered citizens of other countries

in the name of democracy. Fugg with their capitalist system and they kill you while screaming about democracy, Drones, bombs, guns or starvation via embargoes - it's all the same to me. I am too old and too cynical to be fooled.

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Response to malaise (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:48 PM

72. We had a Panamanian student at the college where I was teaching at the time

When the news of the U.S. invasion broke, she went around in tears all day.

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Response to malaise (Reply #12)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:10 AM

84. Just for the sake of accuracy, George H.W. Bush arrested Noriega.

Manuel Antonio Noriega Moreno (Spanish pronunciation: , English pronunciation: /mænjuˈɛl ˌnɔriˈj)eɪgə/; born February 11, 1934) is a former Panamanian politician and soldier. He was military governor of Panama from 1983 to 1989. In the 1989 invasion of Panama by the United States he was removed from power, captured, detained as a prisoner of war, and flown to the United States. Noriega was tried on eight counts of drug trafficking, racketeering, and money laundering in April 1992.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manuel_Noriega

Not an important difference, but anyway . . . .

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #84)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:51 AM

87. My bad

Thanks JDPriestly

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Response to malaise (Reply #87)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:15 PM

139. I appreciate it when people correct me on my many mistakes. I never know whether

someone else will take it personally.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #139)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:33 PM

147. I'm like you

I make mistakes and have no problem admitting that - corrections are lessons.

By the way one of the things I love most about Obama was when he publicly admitted that he got a shellacking in 2010. All the media hacks were shocked since they are never wrong and ReTHUGs never admit to mistakes or apologize.

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Response to malaise (Reply #147)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:57 PM

175. I agree. I like the fact that Obama is not conceited like most poiticians.

And I feel free to say that I disagree with him on issues when I do. Overall, I think he is an exceptionally good president -- in many, many ways great.

I am troubled by the human rights violations that our country is involved in right now, but I do not think they are Obama's idea. I think it is way beyond his control.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #175)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 08:25 PM

176. Like you I find human rights violations troubling

but the US has been violating human rights covertly or overtly for way too long. Think about it - Mark Twain wrote about US imperialism.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:59 PM

16. as you note, the death toll was horrific

and deaths of women, children and all civilians, really, wasn't collateral damage. The entire city WAS the target. And everyone in it.

So scale is a difference.

I've never thought there was anything remotely OK about drone strikes, but I don't buy the Dresden comparison.

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Response to cali (Reply #16)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:03 PM

19. The comparison comes more from the point that we were actually at war with Germany.

We were supposed to hate all Germans at that time so anything FDR and the allies wanted to do was acceptable until one day we figured out it wasn't acceptable. We aren't at war with these other nations other than Afghanistan. The Pakistanis are not at war with us. The Yemenis are not at war with us. They may hate us but as a whole they aren't at war with us. Now we are going to send them into Iran?

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Response to Cleita (Reply #19)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:10 PM

23. "We were supposed to hate all Germans"

Somehow that's not a justification.

"We aren't at war with these other nations other than Afghanistan. The Pakistanis are not at war with us. The Yemenis are not at war with us. They may hate us but as a whole they aren't at war with us. Now we are going to send them into Iran?"

The countries mentioned are also fighting terrorism. They are in fact in cooperating with the U.S. in that fight. So the comparison doesn't make sense.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #23)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:13 PM

26. So we kill their citizens and this is them cooperating?

That doesn't make sense.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #26)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:17 PM

29. They are cooperating

"So we kill their citizens and this is them cooperating?"

...in the fight against terrorism. The targets are terrorists, not citizens. There have been protests about civilian deaths, but they are not being targeted.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #29)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:20 PM

31. We are killing their citizens as collateral damage.

It has been stated. There is no going back on the fact that collateral damage has been stated as acceptable. I cannot accept that a country will find collateral damage of their own citizens as acceptable to get a terrorist that we want. Something is very wrong with this.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #31)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:23 PM

32. Who is making

"It has been stated. There is no going back on the fact that collateral damage has been stated as acceptable. I cannot accept that a country will find collateral damage of their own citizens as acceptable to get a terrorist that we want. Something is very wrong with this."

... that point? It's not acceptable, and they're cooperating in the fight against terrorism. They want the terrorists targeted, but they don't want civilians killed in the process.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #31)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:41 AM

105. We certainly didn't find it acceptable.

In bringing down the Twin Towers and attacking the Pentagon (and the attempt on the Capitol) the people killed were collateral damage as far as the terrorists were concerned. It was the symbols they were after...had people been the primary objective they would have sent a plane or two into a football stadium on a Sunday afternoon.

Until the US participated in the Dresden bombing of 1945, we had refrained from bombing civilian targets. However, by that time the Russians had liberated several concentration camps revealing their horrendous stories of torture and death. Dresden is not a good comparison...

Hiroshima and Nagasaki are better examples of civilians being targeted unnecessarily and immorally. The Japanese had already put out feelers and were trying to negotiate a surrender.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #23)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:28 PM

36. You keep seeming to insist that Cleita is justifying Dresden.

I really don't get that at all.

Also, there is certainly a difference in scale between Dresden & the drones, which she also acknowledges.

The point is one of moral justification. We seem to be killing an awful lot of civilians in the interest of getting a few Al Qaeda operatives (whatever the hell THAT is).

And in her view--I have no idea whether it's correct or not--we may be doing so in order to terrorize a civilian population, like the Romans and Nazis did with their (literal) decimations of uncooperative civilian populations.

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Response to Jackpine Radical (Reply #36)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:34 PM

38. What then is

"The point is one of moral justification. We seem to be killing an awful lot of civilians in the interest of getting a few Al Qaeda operatives (whatever the hell THAT is). "

...is the point of the OP? I think the argument isn't fully thought out because Dresden was horrific, and this comment seems to make the point that there is more justification for what happened in that bombing than in the drone strikes.

Au contrare I'm not justifying it. I'm just saying if you are buying into the collateral damage meme, there was a more justifiable reason than the ones we have for drone strikes we are doing today. No don't think it was right in any way because I don't accept collateral damage at all.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022347168#post24

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Response to ProSense (Reply #38)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:37 PM

40. I guess if your child gets killed or his legs blown off because you were in the wrong

place at the wrong time doesn't make it as horrific if there is more children involved. Is that your point? In my quote please notice what I said after the word "if". Otherwise I give up explaining it to you.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #40)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:41 PM

41. Were the people in Dresden in the wrong place at the wrong time?

I'm not a terrorist so there is no chance that I will end up in Yemen with al-Qaeda.



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Response to ProSense (Reply #41)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:53 PM

46. I don't know where you are but you could be in the wrong place at the wrong

time if a para-military group like SWAT is trying to get a target. If that Dorner guy moves in next door to you, whose to say you won't get caught in the crossfire when they take him down? They are also calculating collateral damage. You don't have to go to Yemen to end up where you don't want to be when shit happens.

As far as Dresden, the Germans, who were fleeing the Russians thought it was a safe haven because it had never been bombed before. I don't think any of those German children who died were terrorists or Nazis even either.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #46)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:56 PM

47. That makes no sense.

"I don't know where you are but you could be in the wrong place at the wrong time if a para-military group like SWAT is trying to get a target."

What does that have to do with al-Qaeda and fighting terrorism in Yemen?

I could be in the wrong place in a police shoot out, but that's of little relevance to the point you're making about bombing Dresden during a war?

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Response to ProSense (Reply #47)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:03 PM

49. Absolutely nothing, but you have picked on a few words in my discussion and ignored every context

they were used in and now it really does make no sense. I was trying to play your little game with you but find I could probably find more lucidity in talking about this with a sixth grader. So believe what you like.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #49)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:17 PM

52. The comparison between Dresden and drone strikes is ridiculous. n/t

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Response to ProSense (Reply #52)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:25 PM

54. So would you prefer Mai Lai?

Oh, not a good comparison because boots on the ground committed that atrocity.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #38)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:41 PM

42. Just this:

we were at war with Germany. There was a front line and the enemy were all Germans, so killing women and children could probably be rationalized.

Au contrare I'm not justifying it. I'm just saying if you are buying into the collateral damage meme, there was a more justifiable reason than the ones we have for drone strikes we are doing today. No don't think it was right in any way because I don't accept collateral damage at all.


Note that "rationalize" is not the same as "justify."

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Response to Jackpine Radical (Reply #42)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:47 PM

44. There was

"There was a front line and the enemy were all Germans, so killing women and children could probably be rationalized."

...an al-Qaeda target could also be rationalized, but somehow it's better to rationalize the bombing of an entire city?

In 2002, another U.S. citizen was killed in Yemen, though it was originally stated that he was not the target.

Kamal Derwish (also Ahmed Hijazi) was an American citizen killed by the CIA as part of a covert targeted killing mission in Yemen on November 5, 2002. The CIA used an RQ-1 Predator drone to shoot a Hellfire missile, destroying the vehicle in which he was driving with five others.

Derwish had been closely linked to the growing religious fundamentalism of the Lackawanna Six, a group of Muslim-Americans who had attended lectures in his apartment near Buffalo, New York.

That an American citizen had been killed by the CIA without trial drew criticism. American authorities quickly back-pedaled on their stories celebrating the death of Derwish, instead noting they had been unaware he was in the car which they said had been targeted for its other occupants, including Abu Ali al-Harithi, believed to have played some role in the USS Cole bombing.

<...>

On November 3, 2002, Derwish and al-Harithi were part of a convoy of vehicles moving through the Yemeni desert trying to meet someone, unaware that their contact was cooperating with US forces to lure them into a trap. As their driver spoke on satellite phone, trying to figure out why the two parties couldn't see each other if they were both at the rendezvous point, a Predator drone launched a Hellfire missile, killing everybody in the vehicle. CIA officers in Djibouti had received clearance for the attack from director George Tenet.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kamal_Derwish


Human Rights Watch issued this statement about the target:

The line between war and law enforcement gained importance as the U.S. government extended its military efforts against terrorism outside of Afghanistan and Pakistan. In November, the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency used a missile to kill Qaid Salim Sinan al-Harethi, an alleged senior al-Qaeda official, and five companions as they were driving in a remote and lawless area of Yemen controlled by tribal chiefs. Washington accused al-Harethi of masterminding the October 2000 bombing of the U.S.S. Cole which had killed seventeen sailors. Based on the limited information available, Human Rights Watch did not criticize the attack on al-Harethi as an extra-judicial execution because his alleged al-Qaeda role arguably made him a combatant, the government apparently lacked control over the area in question, and there evidently was no reasonable law enforcement alternative. Indeed, eighteen Yemeni soldiers had reportedly been killed in a prior attempt to arrest al-Harethi. However, the U.S. government made no public effort to justify this use of its war powers or to articulate the legal limits to such powers. It is Human Rights Watch's position that even someone who might be classified as an enemy combatant should not be subject to military attack when reasonable law enforcement means are available. The failure to respect this principle would risk creating a huge loophole in due process protections worldwide. It would leave everyone open to being summarily killed anyplace in the world upon the unilateral determination by the United States (or, as the approach is inevitably emulated, by any other government) that he or she is an enemy combatant.

http://www.hrw.org/legacy/wr2k3/introduction.html

It reiterates the conditions for action ("al-Qaeda role," "no control over area" and "no reasonable law enforcement alternative," but it also stresses the risk of a slippery slope.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #44)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:00 PM

48. I guess you and I have a different definition of rationalization.

In my dictionary rationalizing something is trying to find reasons to make something right that isn't. It's how you can use a variety of fallacious reasonings to reach the conclusion you want. The doctrine of collateral damage is a rationalization. It is of course incorrect.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #48)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:03 PM

50. You say it as if

"The doctrine of collateral damage is a rationalization. It is of course incorrect. "

..."collateral damage" is a new phenomenon.



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Response to ProSense (Reply #50)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:04 PM

51. No it isn't. It's been in the military language for a long time. n/t

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Response to Jackpine Radical (Reply #36)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:51 PM

74. The OP is not concerned about what you say.

There is the factor, that because I'm criticizing our policy, that I am criticizing the President. Whatever you say will not convince this poster that what our government is doing is wrong. The poster sees it as a direct criticism of President Obama. I and you, I assume, realize that President Obama is not a king and does not control every faction of our government that makes policy. He may be Commander-In-Chief of the military, but has to rely on their expertise and in this I feel he is not being given good advice.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:01 PM

17. The Dresden raids were not conducted by Germany's allies.

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Response to JVS (Reply #17)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:04 PM

20. No they weren't which gives us even less credibility than in bombing Germany

and Japan back in the past.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:14 PM

27. Drone strikes are far more precise and kill lots fewer innocent civilians?

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Response to FarCenter (Reply #27)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:15 PM

28. Really, did anyone say that?

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Response to Cleita (Reply #28)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:24 PM

35. The AGM-114 Hellfire missile has a less than 20 lb high explosive warhead.

Predator drones carry two missiles each. Typically, a target is hit by 1 to 10 missiles and the dead usually range from a few to a couple dozen.

Dresden was carpeted with 700,000 phosphorous bombs. This created a firestorm that killed from 250,000 to 500,000 people.

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Response to FarCenter (Reply #35)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:29 PM

37. And how many innocent civilians who died in bombing deaths have to stand on the head

of a pin, to be considered a wrongful death? Only one IMHO. Only one wrongful death that is calculated as an acceptable loss is as unacceptable as 250,000 to 500,000 people. Why? Because the same thinking is prevailing in both scenarios. It is the 'ends justifies the means' argument, which is never correct, never moral and never acceptable.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #37)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:31 PM

124. Really? One innocent death is as bad as 25,000 (not 250K per earlier post)?

Sorry, proportionality is a key element of the law of war. One dead civilian in a bombing run is a lot more proportional than 25,000.

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Response to FarCenter (Reply #35)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:44 PM

79. Exactly

Hard to believe that someone who could justify that kind of bombing has a problem with drones. It is hypocritical. The declaration of war makes no difference.

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Response to FarCenter (Reply #35)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:54 AM

89. Phosphorous. That's nasty. Were the Germans upset to lose so many of their women and children?

I hope so.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:19 PM

30. Dreden was a war crime.

But war crimes only apply to the losers.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #30)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:23 PM

33. I agree and I think killing innocent citizens in countries

we are trying to kill terrorists as collateral damage is a war crime. I don't even believe in killing terrorists until they have had a trial perhaps at the Hague. I don't think our country would be unbiased enough to conduct a trial. Killing people, except when you are facing fire in a battle, to me is always unacceptable. But this is what we have descended into doing.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #33)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:35 PM

39. That is true.

For every 'terrorist' we kill we create 10 more who swear to a life of revenge. In addition most of those killed are low level types.

Only about 2% of those killed have been high-level targets, the group said. http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/07/politics/drones-cnn-explains/index.html

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Response to former9thward (Reply #39)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:46 PM

43. That ship sailed long ago, since practically every Pashtun has a blood feud with the US

Badal (justice) - To seek justice or take revenge against the wrongdoer. There is considered to be no time limit to the period in which revenge can be taken. Justice in Pashtun lore needs elaborating: even a mere taunt (or "Paighor") is regarded as an insult which usually can only be redressed by shedding the taunter's blood. If he is out of reach, his closest male relation must suffer the penalty instead. Badal may lead to a blood feud that can last generations and involve whole tribes with the loss of hundreds of lives. Normally blood feuds in this male-dominated society are settled in a number of ways.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pashtunwali

There is no possible way to "win the hearts and minds" of the Pashtuns after a decade of war against them.

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Response to FarCenter (Reply #43)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:29 AM

82. well, i guess that means we have to kill them all, then. to be safe, you know.

 

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Response to former9thward (Reply #30)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:29 PM

150. How so?

They dropped no more munitions on Dresden then they did other cities.

Dresden was an industrial center, so a legitimate target under the conventions which were created after WW2 covering air warfare. It was also a center for railroads that the Reich used to move troops around.

As far as Dresden being a militarily significant industrial centre, an official 1942 guide described the German city as "one of the foremost industrial locations of the Reich" and in 1944, the German Army High Command's Weapons Office listed 127 medium-to-large factories and workshops which supplied the army with materiel. Dresden was the seventh largest German city and by far the largest unbombed built-up area left and thus was contributing to the defence of Germany itself.


The city was mostly wood, lacked adequate fire protection, and was dry as a bone during the hot summer. That is why the city caught fire like it did.

Were the allies responsible for the weather? were they responsible for the inadequate fire protection? Should they have gotten weather report from the German before bombing?


The bombing of Dresden has been manipulated by Holocaust deniers and pro-Nazi polemicists—most notably by the British writer David Irving in his book The Destruction of Dresden—in an attempt to establish a moral equivalence between the death toll of Jews in German concentration camps and the indiscriminate killing of German civilians by Allied bombing raids. As such, "grossly inflated" casualty figures have been promulgated over the years, many based on a figure of over 200,000 deaths quoted in a forged version of the casualty report, Tagesbefehl No. 47, that originated with Hitler's Reich Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II

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Response to Confusious (Reply #150)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:36 PM

168. So now if you oppose the incineration of civilians you are a "pro-nazi".

Got it. You were very selective in what you took from your own link. Let's see some other things:

From Churchill: It seems to me that the moment has come when the question of bombing of German cities simply for the sake of increasing the terror, though under other pretexts, should be reviewed. Otherwise we shall come into control of an utterly ruined land… The destruction of Dresden remains a serious query against the conduct of Allied bombing. I am of the opinion that military objectives must henceforward be more strictly studied in our own interests than that of the enemy.

The Foreign Secretary has spoken to me on this subject, and I feel the need for more precise concentration upon military objectives such as oil and communications behind the immediate battle-zone, rather than on mere acts of terror and wanton destruction, however impressive.


and:

However, several researchers have claimed that not all of the communications infrastructure, such as the bridges, were targeted, nor were the extensive industrial areas outside the city centre. Critics of the bombing argue that Dresden—sometimes referred to as "Florence on the Elbe" (Elbflorenz)—was a cultural landmark of little or no military significance, and that the attacks were indiscriminate area bombing and not proportionate to the commensurate military gains

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Response to former9thward (Reply #168)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:37 PM

183. Seems I can't have a discussion here without straw men

No, it doesn't make you pro-nazi. Just be aware of where the inflated figures come from.

Second, there were 127 factories turning out material in Dresden for the German war effort.

The Dresden town council said something to the effect "the work pace of dresden is set by the needs of the army."

It was not a harmless sleepy little town we bombed.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #183)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 02:13 PM

190. Yes, you know more about the bombing than Churchill.

I think not.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #190)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:23 PM

194. That depends on what you are referring too

You're not making yourself very clear or very specific.

But that's probably your point.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #194)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:32 PM

195. My post was very specific.

And it came from your link. I bolded Churchill's opinion about the bombing in order to help you. But some can't be helped and I understand that. Churchill thought it was a terror bombing without value. You, the great WW II armchair general, think it was a military necessity. Hmmmmm who has the greater weight about such matters.....

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Response to former9thward (Reply #195)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:37 PM

198. Yea, Churchill withdrew that memo

and issued a new one.

You forgot to say that. I wonder why?

"Bomber" harris's reply to the first memo:

I ... assume that the view under consideration is something like this: no doubt in the past we were justified in attacking German cities. But to do so was always repugnant and now that the Germans are beaten anyway we can properly abstain from proceeding with these attacks. This is a doctrine to which I could never subscribe. Attacks on cities like any other act of war are intolerable unless they are strategically justified. But they are strategically justified in so far as they tend to shorten the war and preserve the lives of Allied soldiers. To my mind we have absolutely no right to give them up unless it is certain that they will not have this effect. I do not personally regard the whole of the remaining cities of Germany as worth the bones of one British Grenadier.

The feeling, such as there is, over Dresden, could be easily explained by any psychiatrist. It is connected with German bands and Dresden shepherdesses. Actually Dresden was a mass of munitions works, an intact government centre, and a key transportation point to the East. It is now none of these things.



Churchill withdrew his memo and issued a new one. This was completed on 1 April 1945:

It seems to me that the moment has come when the question of the so called 'area-bombing' of German cities should be reviewed from the point of view of our own interests. If we come into control of an entirely ruined land, there will be a great shortage of accommodation for ourselves and our allies… We must see to it that our attacks do no more harm to ourselves in the long run than they do to the enemy's war effort.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II

Churchill never liked area bombing, so it's no surprise that he would revise his policy as soon as he could i.e. "The war was as good as won."

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Response to Confusious (Reply #198)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:38 AM

219. Now you are relying on support of a man many considered to be a war criminal.

Bomber Harris. Why did Churchill withdraw his memo? That is answered in your own link. He withdrew it "under pressure". So in the original memo he stated what he really believed and then he withdrew it as a political gesture as politicians do frequently. That does not help your case.

Area bombing also destroyed a culture. There was something deliberate about that in the Second World War; there was a belief that Prussian militarism had to be pulled up by the roots. But Churchill saw that if you destroyed Germany's cities and re-agrarianised it, as Morgenthau planned, it would be like a huge corpse attached to Western Europe.

There was a belief that bombing would win wars. It was true in the case of the atom bombs; if you could destroy enough, it became true. But conventional bombing doesn't do the trick. In the Second World War, 1.7 million tons of high explosive were dropped on Germany, killing 350,000. It was completely useless. Arthur "Bomber" Harris believed that if you bombed civilians they would rise up and force their leaders to sue for peace. They didn't.


http://www.independent.co.uk/news/education/higher/anthony-grayling-why-bomber-harris-was-wrong-in-every-way-423476.html

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Response to former9thward (Reply #219)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 08:40 PM

222. He's not a war criminal

Last edited Thu Feb 14, 2013, 09:21 PM - Edit history (3)

and neither are the Americans who participated in the raid.

From the constitution:

Article I, Section 9 of the United States Constitution bars the passage of any ex post facto law, legislation meant to punish someone after the fact for conduct which, at the time in question, was not unlawful.


You believe in the rights set forth by the constitution, don't you? This is one of them. Or do you just think the rights should apply to Americans, and not to anyone else?

The Geneva conventions had no laws concerning air war, so they aren't war criminals. We didn't prosecute any NAZIs over the air war. Most were prosecuted for "disturbing the peace."

Coventry wasn't a war crime either.

Arthur "Bomber" Harris believed that if you bombed civilians they would rise up and force their leaders to sue for peace. They didn't.


Of course, later in life, Albert Speer said about some of the more furious bombing raids, "if they had done it a couple more times, the war would have been over in '42 or '43." How many lives would have saved?

Speer also said it dropped production by as much as 30% (which is to say, even though German production increased throughout the war, it would have increased a further 30% without the bombing). What could Germany have done with 30% more tanks, Subs and Airplanes? How many lives were saved?

In his study of the German war economy, Adam Tooze stated that during the Battle of the Ruhr, Bomber Command severely disrupted German production. Steel production fell by 200,000 tons. The armaments industry was facing a steel shortfall of 400,000 tons. After doubling production in 1942, production of steel increased only by 20 percent in 1943. Hitler and Speer were forced to cut planned increases in production. This disruption caused resulted in the Zulieferungskrise (sub-components crisis). The increase of aircraft production for the Luftwaffe also came to an abrupt halt. Monthly production failed to increase between July 1943 and March 1944. "Bomber Command had stopped Speer's armaments miracle in its tracks".


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Ruhr

Generalmajor Albrecht von Massow, A.O.C. Training, GAF: "The attack on German oil production opened in 1944 was the largest factor of all in reducing Germany's war potential."


Generalmajor Herhuth von Rohden, Chief of historical section (Abteilung 8) of Luftwaffe General Staff: "The invasion of Europe would have been impossible without strategic bombing. It was the decisive factor in the long run."


Generalmajor Kolb, formerly in charge of technical training at the Air Ministry: "From the middle of 1940 onward, Germany was forced into major revision of its strategic plans of operation. The power of Allied day and night strategic bombing forced Germany on the defensive from that time on."


General Ingenieur Spies, Chief Engineer of Luftflotte 10: "Without air superiority, the Allied invasion would not have been successful. The Allied advance in both Africa and France was due to the very effective tactical bombing of all types of targets, including transport facilities. I also consider that the strategic disruption of communications was the vital factor."


Generaloberst Georg Lindemann, commanding last German troops to surrender in Denmark: "The reason Germany lost the war was Allied air power."


So much for "It was completely useless."

If you don't know who speer was, and I doubt you do,

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Speer

Anthony Grayling is Professor of Philosophy at Birkbeck College, University of London. He believes that bombing is morally wrong and does not work.


Your fucking kidding me, right?

I'll believe the German Generals and Albert Speer over a "Professor of Philosophy" when it comes to this.

I used to work at a company owned by a guy who had a PHD in Philosophy. Arrogant asshole. (He got lucky making grad students slave for him)

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Response to Confusious (Reply #222)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 09:29 PM

223. You think you know more about it than Churchill.....

So it doesn't surprise me you laugh at anyone else who questions the massacre of innocent civilians. Maybe you can get an internship with John Yoo.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #223)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 10:26 PM

224. Politicians are frequently wrong

Churchill didn't like bombing, and like you, didn't really think it worked.

I cited plenty of quotes as to who, what, why and where it did work. I'll take the word (with a lot of extra research) of the German generals, and the German minister of armaments, as to what was effective in bringing down their country.

So it doesn't surprise me you laugh at anyone else who questions the massacre of innocent civilians.


Strawman

I laugh at people who who base their truth on ideology, not facts. You have no facts, you just have belief. Maybe you could start a church with that.

You just can't seem to accept the reality of what war really means.

Soldiers and civilians die. If you help the war effort, you ARE a legitimate target. Says it right in the Geneva conventions, signed after the war.

I'm glad you weren't in charge, or that war would have gone on far, far, far longer then it should have, and millions more would have died.


The Russians lost 12 million civilians due to the Germans. Where's your sympathy for them? You're up in arms about 20,000 at a legitimate target.

Those 12 million weren't legitimate.

What an awful person you are not to care!

See, I can do straw men too!

I'm not sorry I don't feel bad for a few people that died in an attack because they supported a government that was so evil.

Monumentally evil.

An attack that was NOT a war crime, that had legitimate military objectives, that got out of hand not due to any amplified "terror" motivations, but because of the incompetence of the German government

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:50 PM

45. No Difference - Question Is - What Kind Of Society Do We Want To Be - Benevolent Or Terrorist?

eom

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:25 PM

53. Dresden was bombed - as were other cities - to break the will of the German People

The allies believed that only unconditional surrender, total capitulation, could end the war once and for all. They felt that the armistace that ended WWI had been a failure, and resulted in the many millions of WWII deaths.

Further, they believed that unconditional surrender could only come through destroying the will of the vanquished, Germany and Japan. Thus the conscious decision to bomb civilian populations.

Sherman's March to the Sea in the Civil War happened for the same reason.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #53)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:28 PM

55. All rationalizations with no foundation in facts, just military delusions.

Just like this crap that we have to chase down all these Al Quedas and kill them. I want them hunted down alive and put on trial so we can find out what's really going on.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #55)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:32 PM

56. The Germans were responsible for tens of millions of deaths

Stopping them would never be other than horrible.

I'm not sure if it was done in the best way, but I'm not sure it was the wrong way, either. it worked. They were stopped. There is peace now in Europe.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #56)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:34 PM

57. I always felt that WWII was more honorable than the subsequent wars, which

is sort of the reason I used this incident to illustrate my point. My point being that even "good" wars can be very bad. I really don't think this drone warfare is any more acceptable than any war activities that justifies collateral damage.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #56)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:41 PM

63. 1. Civilian Germans, though not guiltless, were not the S.S. 2. The SOVIET Army

and the sacrifices of the Soviet people are what finally defeated the Third Reich, not the Allied bombing of Dresden.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #63)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:11 AM

90. By "sacrifices of the Soviet people" you mean the civilians murdered by the Germans as they advanced

And during the sieges of those Russian cities?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties

Soviet civilian casualties: 12,700,000
to 14,600,000

Fuck Dresden. Damn shame about the potteries.

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Response to aquart (Reply #90)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:22 PM

144. Yes, I do. Again: The Russians weren't murdered by German citizens, but by soldiers.

I can hold no sympathy for German civilians while ALSO recognizing that bombing Dresden was a war-crime.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #144)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 11:44 PM

177. The people of Dresden were also murdered by soldiers.

Only so many less than the civilians murdered in Russia but you gloss Russia and bleed for Dresden.

German soldiers lost their wives mothers and children? Too damn bad.

FUCK DRESDEN. It was pocket change murder compared to the DELIBERATE GERMAN POLICY OF SLAUGHTERING CIVILIAN POPULATIONS TO CREATE LIEBENSRAUM for Germans. FUCK DRESDEN.

How sad they got to eat what they were dishing out.

Been good as gold ever since I notice.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #56)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:29 AM

91. How do you know "it worked"?

What proof do you have that bombing Dresden was crucial to gaining unconditional surrender from Germany. And even if it was, why should anyone ever think that the speculative advantages of unconditional surrender justifies mass murder?

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Response to Vattel (Reply #91)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 08:23 AM

92. The war to stop Germany, taken as a whole, worked

After centuries of war, Europe has basically been peaceful since 1945. So something worked well.

I don't know that the firebombing was necessary, but I don't know that it wasn't. Approximately 20,000 Germans perished in that action, which was horrific. But that's approximately 1% of all German civillian deaths in the war, or about the number of Jews put to death every couple of days in the death camps. It seems unlikely, to me, that slaughter on that scale could be stopped without an awful, awful loss of life.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #92)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:26 PM

145. You are trying to claim that one mass killing was okay, because there were others.

BTW:
You DO KNOW that the Allies NEVER BOMBED THE RR TRACKS CARRYING JEWS TO THE CAMPS?

We really were NOT there to stop the Holocaust (and we knew FULL WELL the scope). We were there to make sure that Germany did not rule Europe.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #145)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:29 PM

167. That's not quite what I'm saying

I'm saying that, given that tens of thousands of people were dying because of German aggression, actions that lowered the total death toll, perhaps by millions of lives, made sense.

As to bombing the tracks - given the technology of the day, I think that would have been very, very difficult. We didn't have smart bombs. It would have required many sorties into heavily-protected areas. We'd have lost an large number of aircraft that would have delayed the war effort, and might well not have been successful.

In general, it's amazing to me that we won that war, and so quickly. Given the success, I tend to give FDR, Eisenhower, and the rest the benefit of the doubt.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #145)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 12:04 AM

180. Yup. Roosevelt refused to take in fleeing Jewish refugees, too. Sent them back to die.

But, on a much lower level quite a few German POWS never did get home. Lotta Jewish enlisted rage.

Fog of war hides a lot.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #92)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:29 PM

173. So you don't know if the bombing was justified.

I don't think murdering one to save two is justifiable, but even if it is, the idea that slaughtering hundreds of thousands of innocent Germans and Japanese had benefits that outweighed the costs seems pretty far-fetched.

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Response to Vattel (Reply #173)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 12:20 AM

181. Justified.

Yet not a mean peep out of Japan or Germany for over half a century.

60 years is pretty far to fetch considering previous world history.

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Response to aquart (Reply #181)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 04:37 PM

182. And would there have been a mean peep without fire-bombing innocents?

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #53)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:37 PM

59. War crimes, nonetheless, whatever the "beliefs."

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #59)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:39 PM

61. What if it was necessary to successfully end the war?

I agree that it was horrific, but perhaps less terrible than alternatives?

I struggle with this.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #61)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:47 PM

65. And if it were not?

That it was not necessary or justified
Military reasons

The historian Alexander McKee has cast doubt on the meaningfulness of the list of targets mentioned in 1953 USAAF report and point out that the military barracks listed as a target were a long way out of town and not in fact targeted during the raid. The 'hutted camps' mentioned in the report as military targets were also not military but were provided for refugees. It is also pointed out that the important Autobahn bridge to the west of the city was not targeted or attacked and that no railway stations were on the British target maps, nor were the bridges, such as the railway bridge spanning the Elbe River. Commenting on this Alexander McKee stated that: "The standard whitewash gambit, both British and American, is to mention that Dresden contained targets X, Y and Z, and to let the innocent reader assume that these targets were attacked, whereas in fact the bombing plan totally omitted them and thus, except for one or two mere accidents, they escaped" McKee further asserts, "The bomber commanders were not really interested in any purely military or economic targets, which was just as well, for they knew very little about Dresden; the RAF even lacked proper maps of the city. What they were looking for was a big built up area which they could burn, and that Dresden possessed in full measure"

According to historian Sonke Neitzel, "it is difficult to find any evidence in German documents that the destruction of Dresden had any consequences worth mentioning on the Eastern Front. The industrial plants of Dresden played no significant role in Germany industry at this stage in the war" Wing Commander H. R. Allen said, "The final phase of Bomber Command's operations was far and away the worst. Traditional British chivalry and the use of minimum force in war was to become a mockery and the outrages perpetrated by the bombers will be remembered a thousand years hence"

In the north of Dresden there were remarkable military facilities in the Albertstadt which were not hit by the bombings. Today they are still there, used as officer education buildings for the German Bundeswehr and hosting Germany's military-historic museum (from stone-age to modern times).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II#That_it_was_not_necessary_or_justified

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #53)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:53 PM

75. See "The Fog of War"--a documentary about Robert McNamara

Aside from being one of the planners of the Vietnam War, he also targeted Japanese cities during World War II. They listed some of the cities that he targeted and the number of people killed in each one, and frankly, I was astonished at how small and insignificant some of the cities were. One of them can be seen in its entirety at one glance from the freeway.

McNamara admitted that he felt guilty about this aspect of his life.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:36 PM

58. The Bombing of Dresden is indefensible. Now what? Drones are okay?

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #58)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:39 PM

60. Not according to me.

I think this drone warfare is really awful. Medea Benjamin is describing how they hover over villages for days and weeks at a time essentially terrorizing the residents. (I'm listening to Steve Leser's radio podcast and his interview with Medea.)

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:40 PM

62. Or El Chorillo (Panama), for that matter.

Poppy got pissy with Noriega and we Dresdened the slums to keep Noriega from escaping into them.

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Response to DollarBillHines (Reply #62)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:13 AM

81. And don't forget Grenada

What I don't get is the 'official outrage'? Sure more Americans are shocked at what the 'great democracy' does, but whether it's covert or overt, it isn't new.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:45 PM

64. WWII was about getting a nation to surrender. The drones are not about getting to surrender.

There is no nation to surrender to us. There is no leader who can surrender and have all followers quit the fight.

At best the drone killings create lots of angry people who readily fill the jobs made vacant by the drone strikes.

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Response to HereSince1628 (Reply #64)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:07 PM

66. By proving we had the technology and the will

toquickly make as many dead people as was required to gain that surrender. It was an attempt to prove that we could and would turn these lands into smoking cinders if needed. Same goes for Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

The drone strikes are to kill specific people and carry a different psychological message. For these folks there is great honor in dying during combat with the "enemy". However, I suspect that there is far less honor in getting torched by a drone, as there is no infidel to shoot back at.

It also proves that "there is no place to hide", no "safe place to sleep", and nothing to strike back at. I happen to believe that this method is not just chosen for the safety of the troops.

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Response to quaker bill (Reply #66)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:01 PM

77. I fear we have institutionalized the mechanism for war without end

The drone strikes have high collateral damage to our cause, not just in the innocents they kill and mame, but also thru the embitterment of magnitudes more, many who will find in that cause to be recruited as our enemies for untold future tomorrows.


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Response to HereSince1628 (Reply #77)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:01 AM

88. That is one theory.

I don't think there is a way to prosecute a war that does not embitter the folks on the receiving end. I think it is fair to state that the embitterment is a purpose of war. You generally do not make friends by blowing people up, and am pretty sure that those who are vaguely sober and engaging in it do not expect that result. This is why in the final analysis "war is not the answer".

The result they expect is much like the result we expected in other wars, to provide proof to those intent on doing us harm that we will kill with impunity to whatever extent necessary to gain their silence or cooperation. It is not a negotiation. It is intended to leave a lasting impression. It is fully intended that the people on the receiving end object and object strongly. From this logic, if drones create this reaction more quickly, it could be part of the reason they are selected.

IMHO is no way to prosecute a war that does not do "high collateral damage to our cause".

I do not support war, but do like to speak honestly about it.

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Response to HereSince1628 (Reply #64)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:22 AM

85. Good points, HereSince1628.

This war can never end because we cannot define our "enemy" clearly enough to know when it is waving a white flag.

Will this war continue until our country is completely safe? From what?

As has been mentioned frequently, more Americans die due to the violence of their fellow Americans than due to the violence of foreign terrorists.

Do we need to be careful about terrorists? Do we need to watch what known terrorists are doing and planning? Yes. But we spend far too much time, money and energy on fighting terrorism and too little dealing with the terrible problems we have here including climate change and excessive violence by people we don't classify as terrorists.

Of course, the fear is that terrorists can kill a lot of people at once, but overall, the total tally of deaths from American-against-American is higher than that of terrorist-against-American.

In that sense, the terrorists that want to kill Americans are failing. (Thank God.)

Meanwhile, we are spending so much money on our military response to terrorism that we are neglecting education and fighting against climate change and so many other serious threats.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:14 PM

67. Clean war

 

Clean coal. Neither exists.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:09 PM

69. Jesus and guns

Luke 22 says: "49 When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, “Lord,
should we strike with our swords?” 50 And one of them struck the servant
of the high priest, cutting off his right ear. 51 But Jesus answered, “No more of this!” And he touched the man’s ear and healed him."

"No more of this" is not a bad direction for us as a society.

http://www.freethought.mbdojo.com/guns.htmlhas a thoughtful discussion of the topic. Personally, I have difficulty

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Response to jimgggg (Reply #69)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:23 AM

86. Thanks.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:26 PM

70. Last time I checked, the Germans love us today.

Considering we bombed the crap out of their civilians and they don't hate us now, we shouldn't worry about the long term consequences of collateral damage from drone strikes.

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Response to WonderGrunion (Reply #70)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:43 PM

71. You are really conflating Europeans, whom most Americans have

a common ancestry, with people who will hate us for generations and have no problem with the concept of revenge?

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Response to WonderGrunion (Reply #70)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:50 PM

73. Do they, now?


Interesting hypothesis.

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Response to WonderGrunion (Reply #70)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:00 PM

76. First of all, anyone old enough to remember World War II at all is 73 years old

Second, Germany has a Western culture and no "honor code" in which relatives are required by custom to avenge the deaths of their family members. Any family that didn't try to avenge the death of one of its members would "lose its honor."

Third, after the war, the U.S. poured aid into Germany and other Western European countries to help them rebuild the then-modern infrastructure that they already had before the war.

Fourth, many Germans had family connections to the U.S. At the time, Germany was the second-largest source of American ancestry after the British Isles. My great-uncle was an army chaplain, and he was stationed in Germany immediately after the war, perhaps because he had been raised bilingual. He looked up our relatives and helped them out with food and clothes.

So it's not the same kind of situation at all.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:18 PM

78. They are actually far worse (I hate to say)

Last edited Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:21 AM - Edit history (4)

1) We were at war with Germany. While Dresden might have been an atrocity, it was, at least, within the context of a declared war. The drone strikes are completely indiscriminate -- no declaration of war, no oversight whatsoever (*). We have people 4000 miles away just pushing buttons whenever they feel like it on the flimsiest of evidence -- and the result is 90+% of the people killed are not involved in any imminent threat to Americans or America.

2) It is only a matter of time -- and not very much time -- before our adversaries have access to drones that can fire missiles. No, maybe they won't be as "accurate" as Hellfire missiles. So what? We have given everybody in the world the precedent to fire upon us with whatever drone missiles they can put up in the air. And if they aren't "as accurate as Hellfire missiles", well, that is just how it goes.

Seriously, who is thinking this through? How can any Senator of either party not stand up and demand a reckoning? We are only a few years away from a state like Iran or a stateless group like al Qaeda using these things on Israel. And why not? All they have to do is follow the Obama doctrine. "We made the judgment that the target of our missile was an imminent danger to us, so we acted preemptively."

It may be a little harder for an adversary to fly these things over the US, but they can use the UK, France, Germany, or other allies as our proxies easily enough.

This is some heavy shit Obama has stirred up. This is going to blow back upon Americans 1000 times over.

* Please note that the only drone attacks that have to be escalated for approval of POTUS are "personality" snuffings -- when we think we have identified a SPECIFIC person who was on our death list. That is only a tiny percentage of the drone attacks. The vast, vast, vast majority (at least 90%) are attacks based essentially on profiling without any real knowledge of who it is we are blasting to smithereens. Those profile-based attacks require no POTUS approval. Shouldn't it actually be the other way 'round? If we DON'T know who we are killing, maybe those are the ones that should have POTUS approval.

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Response to BlueStreak (Reply #78)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:15 AM

80. Yes.

Exactly my point.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:33 AM

83. Dresden was 2,200,000 percent worse.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 08:31 AM

93. The number of Dresden deaths cited in that article is suspect

The most-respected estimates, including the estimate of the German government, are 18,000-25,000.

Still terrible, but to put it in perspective, that's the number of Jews that were murdered by the Germans every day or two when the death machine was in full swing.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #93)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 08:46 AM

94. What happened

The most-respected estimates, including the estimate of the German government, are 18,000-25,000.

Still terrible, but to put it in perspective, that's the number of Jews that were murdered by the Germans every day or two when the death machine was in full swing.

...Third Way Manny? You've become an apologist for a bombing that killed "18,000-25,000" civilians. Are you no better than those you mock?

The attrocities of war do no exclude those committed during the FDR Presidency.

Japanese American internment

President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized the internment with Executive Order 9066, issued February 19, 1942, which allowed local military commanders to designate "military areas" as "exclusion zones," from which "any or all persons may be excluded." This power was used to declare that all people of Japanese ancestry were excluded from the entire Pacific coast, including all of California and much of Oregon, Washington and Arizona, except for those in internment camps. In 1944, the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the exclusion orders, while noting that the provisions that singled out people of Japanese ancestry were a separate issue outside the scope of the proceedings. The United States Census Bureau assisted the internment efforts by providing confidential neighborhood information on Japanese Americans. The Bureau's role was denied for decades, but was finally proven in 2007.

In 1980, President Jimmy Carter conducted an investigation to determine whether putting Japanese Americans into internment camps was justified well enough by the government. He appointed the Commission on Wartime Relocation and Internment of Civilians to investigate the camps. The commission's report, named “Personal Justice Denied,” found little evidence of Japanese disloyalty at the time and recommended the government pay reparations to the survivors. They formed a payment of $20,000 to each individual internment camp survivor. These were the reparations passed by President Ronald Reagan.

In 1988, Congress passed and President Ronald Reagan signed legislation which apologized for the internment on behalf of the U.S. government. The legislation said that government actions were based on "race prejudice, war hysteria, and a failure of political leadership". The U.S. government eventually disbursed more than $1.6 billion in reparations to Japanese Americans who had been interned and their heirs.

<...>

Many internees lost irreplaceable personal property due to the restrictions on what could be taken into the camps. These losses were compounded by theft and destruction of items placed in governmental storage. A number of persons died or suffered for lack of medical care, and several were killed by sentries; James Wakasa, for instance, was killed at Topaz War Relocation Center, near the perimeter wire. Nikkei were prohibited from leaving the Military Zones during the last few weeks before internment, and only able to leave the camps by permission of the camp administrators.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_American_internment

We Japanese Americans must not forget our wartime internment

The degrading treatment of Japanese American families like mine is the theme of my new musical, Allegiance

Seventy years ago, US soldiers bearing bayoneted rifles came marching up to the front door of our family's home in Los Angeles, ordering us out. Our crime was looking like the people who had bombed Pearl Harbor a few months before. I'll never forget that day, nor the tears streaming down my mother's face as we were forcibly removed, herded off like animals, to a nearby race track. There, for weeks, we would live in a filthy horse stable while our "permanent" relocation camp was being constructed thousands of miles away in Arkansas, in a place called Rohwer.

I recently revisited Rohwer. Gone were the sentry towers, armed guards, barbed wire and crudely constructed barracks that defined our lives for many years. The swamp had been drained, the trees chopped down. Only miles and miles of cotton fields. The only thing remaining was the cemetery with two tall monuments.

Because I was a child, I didn't understand the depth of the degradation and deprivation my parents suffered, or how courageous and foresighted my mother had been to smuggle a sewing machine into camp, which permitted her to make modest curtains for our bare quarters. I didn't grasp what a blow the ordeal was to my father's role as provider, as he struggled to keep our family together. The family ate, bathed and did chores along with a whole community, pressed together in the confines of a makeshift camp, in the oppressive heat and mosquito-infested swamps of Arkansas.

Later my family would be shipped to a high-security camp in Tule Lake, California, constructed in a desolate, dry lake bed in the north of the state. Three layers of barbed-wire fences now confined us. Out of principle, my parents had refused to answer yes to a "loyalty" questionnaire the government had promulgated. It had asked whether they would serve in the US army and go wherever ordered, and whether they would swear allegiance to the US government and "forswear" loyalty to the Japanese emperor – as if any had ever sworn such loyalty in the first instance.

- more -

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/apr/27/we-japanese-americans-wartime-internment

WWII had brutal consequences on U.S. soil.

During World War II, six German saboteurs who secretly entered the United States on a mission to attack its civil infrastructure are executed by the United States for spying. Two other saboteurs who disclosed the plot to the FBI and aided U.S. authorities in their manhunt for their collaborators were imprisoned.

<...>

Just before midnight on June 12, in a heavy fog, a German submarine reached the American coast off Amagansett, Long Island, and deployed a team who rowed ashore in an inflatable boat. Just as the Germans finished burying their explosives in the sand, John C. Cullen, a young U.S. Coast Guardsman, came upon them during his regular patrol of the beach. The leader of the team, George Dasch, bribed the suspicious Cullen, and he accepted the money, promising to keep quiet. However, as soon as he passed safely back into the fog, he sprinted the two miles back to the Coast Guard station and informed his superiors of his discovery. After retrieving the German supplies from the beach, the Coast Guard called the FBI, which launched a massive manhunt for the saboteurs, who had fled to New York City.

Although unaware that the FBI was looking for them, Dasch and another saboteur, Ernest Burger, decided to turn themselves in and betray their colleagues, perhaps because they feared capture was inevitable after the botched landing. On July 15, Dasch called the FBI in New York, but they failed to take his claims seriously, so he decided to travel to FBI headquarters in Washington, D.C. On July 18, the same day that a second four-man team successfully landed at Ponte Verdra Beach, Florida, Dasch turned himself in. He agreed to help the FBI capture the rest of the saboteurs.

Burger and the rest of the Long Island team were picked up by June 22, and by June 27 the whole of the Florida team was arrested. To preserve wartime secrecy, President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered a special military tribunal consisting of seven generals to try the saboteurs. At the end of July, Dasch was sentenced to 30 years in prison, Burger was sentenced to hard labor for life, and the other six Germans were sentenced to die. The six condemned saboteurs were executed by electric chair in Washington, D.C., on August 8. In 1944, two other German spies were caught after a landing in Maine. No other instances of German sabotage within wartime America has come to light.

- more -

http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/german-saboteurs-executed-in-washington


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Response to ProSense (Reply #94)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:05 AM

95. More Jews were slaughtered during those three days than Dresdeners

12,000 Jew were being murdered in the camps each day. When you consider all civillian casualties due to German aggression you could probably double that number.

The Allies stopped it. They felt that the firebombing of German population centers was necessary to do so. As horrified as I am by the death of 18,000 to 25,000 Dresdeners, I am more horrified by the many millions more that would have been slaughtered if the war had not been brought to a speedy close.

Perhaps I should accuse you of wanting that war to have gone on longer, because you don't support the efforts that were taken to shorten it. But I don't think that's true. I think you are glad that there was a speedy ending.

Do you think that you know more about waging war than Eisenhower did?

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #95)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:10 AM

96. I get your thinking: It's OK to kill 20,000 civilians to stop Hitler. Right?

What's your excuse for the Internment?

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Response to ProSense (Reply #96)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:14 AM

98. It's less awful for 20,000 innocents to die than for multiples of that to die.

Do we agree?

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #98)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:17 AM

99. Actually,

It's less awful for 20,000 innocents to die than for multiples of that to die.

Do we agree?

...no because that's a desperately confusing statement.

What is your excuse for the Internment? You have one for wiping out 20,000 civilians.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #99)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:19 AM

100. If we can't agree on something as simple as fewer deaths is better than more deaths,

then I fear that this discussion will not likely be fruitful for either of us.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #100)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:22 AM

101. OK

If we can't agree on something as simple as fewer deaths is better than more deaths,

then I fear that this discussion will not likely be fruitful for either of us.

...drone strikes cause fewer deaths than carpet bombing a city. Do you agree?

Please don't exit the discussion before offering your excuse for the Internment.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #101)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:31 AM

102. Are carpet bombing or extrajudicial assasinations our only two options here?

Really?

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #102)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:35 AM

103. Drone strikes cause fewer deaths than carpet bombing a city. Do you agree?

Your excuse for the carpet bombing was fewer casualties. Drone strikes don't destroy entire cities and kill tens of thousands of people.

What's your excuse for the Internment? You seem to be avoiding that question.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #103)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:49 AM

106. You say that like it's the only two options.

But those are not, by any stretch, the only two options.

By contrast, in the case of Dresden, the Allies felt that the only two options were to firebomb German population centers or allow tens of thousands more deaths to occur every day. Although I sense that you're not comfortable with that. I'm not comfortable with that, either, but my best guess is that they were right.

I've discussed my views on internment in the past, as you know. If you'd like to refresh your memory, search for "prosense manygoldstein fdr internment" or similar.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #106)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:56 AM

107. Since

You say that like it's the only two options.

But those are not, by any stretch, the only two options.

By contrast, in the case of Dresden, the Allies felt that the only two options were to firebomb German population centers or allow tens of thousands more deaths to occur every day.

I've discussed my views on internment in the past, as you know. If you'd like to refresh your memory, search for "prosense manygoldstein fdr internment" or similar.

...I didn't present these as "the only two options," it appears you're engaging in some serious obfuscation.

So let me ask the question again: Drone strikes cause fewer deaths than carpet bombing a city. Do you agree?

Your excuse for the carpet bombing was fewer casualties. Drone strikes don't destroy entire cities and kill tens of thousands of people.

You should be able to answer the question based on your own assumptions about casualties.

You are avoiding the Interment question.

I know you previously responded to a similar question by stating that you "trusted" FDR, but that's not a justification and doesn't offer an insight for why you excuse it.

What's your excuse for the Internment?

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Response to ProSense (Reply #107)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 10:05 AM

108. Prosense: "Was the Internment brutally wrong?"

MannyGoldstein: "In my opinion, yes."

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=2319468

At this point, I don't think there's any further good to be had from this thread and I have to go and earn a living.

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Response to MannyGoldstein (Reply #108)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 10:10 AM

109. "But apparently it wasn't unconstitutional."

White picket fences!

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=2319580

I trust that FDR was working to do the right thing

He fought, truly fought, to help the 99% while being relentlessly attacked by the 1%. Hell, the 1% even attempted a coup! His cabinet included the far left, increasingly so as time went on.

So he earned my trust.

My personal belief is that in the areas where he was wrong, or may have fallen short, he was working to the best that could be done during a war. A real war. That covered virtually the entire planet. Serious, crazy stuff. Some dumb decisions and fuck ups occurred.

But, to my knowledge, no executions of Axis sympathizers merely because they were sympathizers.

...that is your response to this:

Many internees lost irreplaceable personal property due to the restrictions on what could be taken into the camps. These losses were compounded by theft and destruction of items placed in governmental storage. A number of persons died or suffered for lack of medical care, and several were killed by sentries; James Wakasa, for instance, was killed at Topaz War Relocation Center, near the perimeter wire. Nikkei were prohibited from leaving the Military Zones during the last few weeks before internment, and only able to leave the camps by permission of the camp administrators.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_American_internment

Look, what FDR did was even more brutal than what is currently going on under Obama. Please either learn some actual history or stop rewriting it to bolster YOUR agenda. 'k?

You're basically saying that while the Internment led to the detention and death of many Japanese-Americans, FDR earned your trust and his goals were right.


http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022318400#post45


Oh, and this beauty:

Yes, I trust that FDR was doing his best to do the right thing

And he made mistakes, like everyone does.

During a world war, mistakes can easily lead to enormous tragedy.

1,000 Americans die each week because of lack of access to medical care. Because Obama refused to try to get universal health care, or truly affordable health care, do you feel that he murdered hundreds of thousands of Americans? Or do you think he wanted to do the right thing, and was doing the best that he could?

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=2318862

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Response to ProSense (Reply #96)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 11:42 AM

110. I can't believe you two missed this.

If you want to argue over undeserving Americans whom the United States killed or inconvenienced in WWII and its aftermath, look no further than the Americans who actually fought the war, then were cut loose by the feds with minimal debriefing and no mental health treatment.

A great many of the Greatest Generation therefore died by their own hands, neglected by their government and shunned by their fellow citizens, and eventually turned out to the streets by the Reagan Administration. It would be nice to have some solid figures to offer for comparison, but as far as I know there are no solid estimates of PTSD-related suicides and murder/suicides in the wake of World War II. (Note that we never fully solved the PTSD problem: right now we have a combat veteran running amok in California, though the press insists on branding him an ex-cop instead of the ex-SEAL that he appears to be.)

That of course adds an unusual and perhaps unwelcome wrinkle to the ethical debate here, because the technology of killing by remote control also provides the same "window of separation" that bomber crews experienced during WWII (note that almost all of the PTSD described by Joseph Heller in his wonderful book stems from crew-related incidents, not the thousands of innocents his characters are collectively responsible for killing by bombing). Separating a combatant from one's enemy by a screen, scope, periscope, or even an eye-slit is shown to reduce the severity of PTSD. Separating a combatant by most of those things and eight thousand miles probably helps considerably more.

Which suggests that heavier reliance on remote-controlled combat might save more American lives than just about anything else, by not destroying the psyches of Americans by keeping them in combat. Of course, when there is minimal mental penalty for killing indiscriminately, and total secrecy over the results of operations, it seems unlikely to reduce the number of innocent casualties.

Whatever ripples this observation makes in the pool, remind yourselves that war is always a net-negative proposition in the short term for a nation (though just as certainly, some individuals always inordinately profit from it), and thus we are all arguing over ripples in a cesspool.

There is no way to completely remove tragedy from war. That's the lesson we should all know by heart.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:14 AM

97. Drone strikes kill far, far fewer people, and cause comparatively minimal physical damage.

If you're conflating drone strikes which target single individuals with the carpet bombing & destruction of entire cities which kill many tens of thousands, then you're delusional.

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Response to baldguy (Reply #97)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:36 AM

104. +1

I don't see the salient issue being drones at all. Let's face it, the technology is inevitable. The drone is the latest in thousands of years of evolution of more accuracy and longer range.

The real issue here is not new either. Maybe I've seen too many spy movies but I find it hard to believe we weren't killing people we've identified as bad guys since, like, forever. Not only is the weaponry more advance, but so is our information and our news cycle. I don't think we have our arms quite around either of these developments yet. I hope we gain some perspective as we acquire more experience.

We need a national dialogue on the efficacy of this. We may in fact never have an answer but the more out in the open these activities are and the more they are subject to debate, the better.

I think that's the bottom line, as best as I can tell. Maybe someone with a better mind than mine has a better answer?

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Response to baldguy (Reply #97)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:17 PM

111. Everybody seems to think it's not so bad because the numbers are fewer? Really? I'm seeing this

reasoning from liberals? Tell that to the parent who lost one child in a drone strike. Tell them it's okay because it's not as bad as Dresden or Mai Lai, or even Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

I'm amazed.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #111)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 02:53 PM

112. Would you rather have three or four divisions of Marines invade?

Or bomb the cities the terrorists are in to rubble? Or overthrow the govts that are allowing them safe haven?

Or are you among those who think that al Qaeda isn't a threat anymore?

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Response to baldguy (Reply #112)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:01 PM

115. Medea Benjamin said it best.

She says they should be treated like terrorists throughout the world where local police and interpol deals with them. We have no right to kill someone who hasn't had their day in court.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #115)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:08 PM

137. Please spell out the process for arresting someone who's hiding out in a region of the world

With no governmental authorities.

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Response to baldguy (Reply #137)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:13 PM

138. That's why there is that organization known as Interpol.

Also, many Al Queda are planked right down in European countries as well as Canada and our own. Really, most of them are not roosting in caves like they would have you believe. Also, somebody in those remote regions know who they are and probably can be persuaded by bribery or threats to give up their identity so they can be arrested and jailed. This requires police work, detective type work not bombs.

http://www.interpol.int/About-INTERPOL/Overview

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Response to Cleita (Reply #138)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:30 PM

152. What part of "no governmental authorities" do you not understand?

There's nobody for Interpol - or the FBI, for that matter - to contact to arrest these people for extradition. The Govt of Pakistan doesn't control their tribal areas, and the govt of Yemen has no control over large areas of their country either. These are the places al Qaeda is for that very reason. Not to mention the fact that these countries have their own problems with fundamentalist extremists and may not want to appear overly to seem to help apprehending these people.

Meanwhile al Qaeda is still out there planning on killing innocent people all over the world.

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Response to baldguy (Reply #152)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:35 PM

154. So you don't think neighboring countries could send in investigators into places like

Yemen to find stuff out? Also, those guys use the internet and cell phones. They are traceable and they can be flushed out if you grease the palms of the right people. There is no need to kill anyone. That's reducing ourselves to their level.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #154)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:38 PM

169. Dumber than a sack of hammers.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #111)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:00 PM

114. I think the other question is whether it was effective in ending the war more quickly...

I don't really know, myself, but I was just wondering...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #114)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:02 PM

116. Terrorizing innocent civilians is not winning us friends and Americans will

get payback down the line because of it.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #116)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:23 PM

120. It is always a risk and has happened. But the fact is that the Germans today don't

hate us for the Dresden fire-bombing, nor the japanese for the Tokyo incident...

However, we HAVE seen blowback in the Middle East and I have real concerns about these drone attacks...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #120)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:26 PM

122. Yes, this is the eye for an eye crowd. They will avenge wrongs done to them.

The only reason the Germans and Japanese don't hate us is because after the war we helped them rebuild what we had destroyed and they became better and stronger because of it. I don't see us doing such benevolent actions in the ME.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #122)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:32 PM

125. This line of thought always makes me uncomfortable. What happened in Japan and

Dresden was mass killing of innocents. Using drones is resulting in killings of innocents. I'm wondering what the difference basically is...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #125)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:33 PM

126. There isn't. It's wrongful deaths in both instances of people who happened

to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 02:55 PM

113. Didn't we also fire bomb Tokyo?

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #113)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:13 PM

118. Here is something on it

http://www.commondreams.org/headlines05/0310-08.htm

But it pales in comparison of dropping nukes on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It's just the idea of killing people remotely whether from an airplane or from a control panel that's so appalling especially when they are just civilians and often children. I mentioned Dresden because I knew someone who lived through it.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:10 PM

117. So let's put a few war criminals on trial for a start, for setting up torture camps

 

Oops, empires don't do that to their "above the law" elite. So, any karma the elite are accruing will come back to haunt us, not them. In that respect it's similar to Dresden, it doesn't matter what we, the 99%, do or believe, we are represented by people who torture, kill with drones and disregard the consequences because those consequences aren't theirs to be dealt with.

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Response to just1voice (Reply #117)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:16 PM

119. I agree and I'm still of the hope that our war criminals will be brought to justice in the future.

I have to believe that or there will be no controlling my cynicism if it doesn't happen. I don't think it will be us but some nation will step up to the task the minute Bush, Cheney or Rumsfeld let down their guard and step a foot out of this country.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:29 PM

123. Dresden was a war crime--indiscriminate bombing designed

to inflict pain, suffering, and death on a civilian population. That attack killed 10X as many civilians as every single drone attack by the US since 2001 combined.

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Response to geek tragedy (Reply #123)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:37 PM

127. Again the numbers?

One innocent death is as tragic as thousands and just as wrong.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #127)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:38 PM

128. No it isn't. Jeebus. Arithmetic tells us that one lost life is preferable to

25,000.

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Response to geek tragedy (Reply #128)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:49 PM

129. It's that kind of thinking that leads to this kind of

bad policy to begin with.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #129)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:51 PM

130. Are you aware that proportionality is one of the foundations

of the law of war?

Seriously, you think that if a bombing raid kills one innocent person, that's every bit as bad as if it were to kill 25,000?

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Response to geek tragedy (Reply #130)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:54 PM

132. Who makes up the laws? It doesn't make them morally right.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #132)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:56 PM

133. Since when does your version of morality come from God's hand? nt

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Response to geek tragedy (Reply #133)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:59 PM

135. There is no version here. It's a universal that murder is wrong. Every tribe, religion and nation in

history has accepted some form of this morality.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #135)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:02 PM

136. It's also more generally recognized that 25,000 innocent lives

lost is a vastly worse outcome than one innocent life lost.

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Response to geek tragedy (Reply #136)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:20 PM

141. Tell that to the innocents who were killed in the bombing of Dresden.

I'm sure they'll appreciate the math.

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Response to Occulus (Reply #141)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:29 PM

146. Try reading my post again, then consider whether

your post makes any sense.

Hint: it doesn't.

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Response to Occulus (Reply #141)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:42 PM

158. I think the people who survived the holocaust would.

Or the people who survived the fighting in Europe would. Or those that didn't have to fight and die because the war ended would.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #135)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:18 PM

140. Hmmm.... The Inquisition comes to mind. Also, Aztec human sacrifice (16th C.).

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #140)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:20 PM

142. It was still considered wrong by the majority of people and by history. n/t

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #140)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:22 PM

143. Religion has ever engaged in brutality to enforce its whims.

Such takes place to this very day, even here.

That does not make it right.

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Response to Occulus (Reply #143)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:35 PM

197. I agree! As we have clearly seen in many ways, mankind perverts religion for power.

Of course, that may be a tautology.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #135)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:41 PM

157. But killing the "other" is OK

Every tribe, religion and nation in history has accepted that.

Not a good defense.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #157)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:59 PM

162. They don't. Not really. Maybe some institutions like religions sanction it, but

it's actually a perversion. The average human no matter where he's from and what era in history does not sanction the murder of innocents.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #162)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:46 PM

186. Carthage

Aztecs
Incas
Spanish

"innocents" is a relatively new western idea when it comes to warfare. part of gentlemen's warfare, from the 16th and 17th centuries.

The Romans took Carthage and a city of 700,000 was reduced to 0.

Only 50,000 people survived.

Everyone else was slaughtered.

Those 50,000 got to be slaves for the rest of their lives.

Besides, under the Geneva conventions, if you make the weapons of war, you're not innocent. You're a legitimate target. Dresden had 127 factories making material for the German army.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #186)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:59 PM

188. So you agree, war is evil.

People shouldn't be killed or enslaved to better the lives of those who conquer them. I don't care if it's the Greeks burning Troy to the ground or us bombing Pakistan.

btw. When you speak of human sacrifice, remember those who did the sacrifice thought they were sending the souls of the victims to the gods or a better place, if you will.

It's time we evolved and recognized the rights of the innocents to live their lives out in peace.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #188)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 02:05 PM

189. The Aztecs weren't taking willing victims

They were captured in war, from other tribes, and slaughtered.

The NAZIs thought they were doing the world a favor.

They are usually thought of as the greatest evil of the 20th century.

So..

btw. When you speak of human sacrifice, remember those who did the sacrifice thought they were sending the souls of the victims to the gods or a better place, if you will.


Really doesn't mean much. Unwilling is unwilling. Doesn't matter want the priests believed. If you make that argument, you're justifying pretty much anything and everything.

As far as innocents go, if you make the weapons of war, if you grow the food that the soldiers eat, make the clothes that they wear, if you're in a country that decides to make war, how innocent are you?

That goes for Germany, that goes for the US.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #189)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 02:20 PM

191. Please read up on the Aztecs. The prisoners of war taken also were given a

a god's life style before they were sacrificed. They got the best of food and the prettiest maidens to wait on them hand and foot and who fulfilled their every desires. They were considered to be that god. In the warfare that they conducted, killing was not the goal but the taking of prisoners for sacrifice and those who were taken prisoner understood this and accepted it.

http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/livenow?id=8990289

The Nazis otoh were exterminating what they considered an inferior species of us.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #191)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:34 PM

196. Yea, don't think so

Unless you give me a cite and a source, I'll go with this:

There is still much debate as to what social groups constituted the usual victims of these sacrifices. It is often assumed that all victims were 'disposable' commoners or foreigners. However, slaves - a major source of victims - were not a permanent class but rather persons from any level of Aztec society who had fallen into debt or committed some crime (see Duran, Book of the Gods and Rites, 131, 260). Likewise, most of the earliest accounts talk of prisoners of war of diverse social status, and concur that virtually all child sacrifices were locals of noble lineage, offered by their own parents (compare Cortes, Letters 105 with Motolinia, History of the Indies 118-119 and Duran, Book of the Gods, 223, 242).

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Response to Confusious (Reply #196)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:39 PM

199. I gave you a source and many who study the Aztecs don't agree with you considering much

that was written back during the conquest was written by the victors. But you believe what you like because I know better than to try to enlighten anyone who has made up their minds and closed it. It's one of the reasons I don't engage Freepers in conversations any more. It's a fool's errand.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #199)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:41 PM

201. No you didn't

You gave me a link to 24 hour dorner watch.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #201)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:43 PM

202. My apologies. Here's your link.

http://www.plu.edu/~bluchehn/sacrifice/sacrificial-victims.html

Sorry about the Dorner link. I was posting about that too.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #202)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:48 PM

203. Well I will agree some were willing

Inasmuch as sacrifice was a symbolic representation of hierarchical relations and tribute obligations, death as a sacrificial offering was a fitting punishment for insubordination and the refusal to pay tribute (Ingham 1984). If a person were to go against the Aztec empire they would be forced to die as a sacrifice, and in a less honorable way than say a gladiator from another province. Furthermore, sacrificial victims included disobedient slaves and certain types of criminals and, of course, the captured warriors of towns and provinces that had refused to pay tribute (Ingham 1984). The Aztecs had a high price for people who disobeyed their laws.


I find it hard to believe that a people who were not willing to pay tribute WOULD be willing to be a sacrifice.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #203)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:52 PM

205. Cultural differences.

Try to explain head hunting, until you read about the reasoning of the head hunter, then it makes a perverted sense. It doesn't mean we don't move on and evolve as a civilization. What we are doing with these drone attacks is to me as perverse as head hunting if we kill one child by "accident". It doesn't have to be and we have to do better.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #205)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 08:05 PM

207. We already are

I think you're asking for something that just cannot be done.

Using drones has dropped the number of "others" getting killed by large numbers.

We either have to kill them and accept that we can't do anything without someone else getting hurt, or accept that we can't do anything without someone else getting hurt, and let them kill us.

We just don't have the means or the technology to do it any other way.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #207)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 08:18 PM

208. That's a very defeatist attitude. We seemed to have been

able to diffuse any widespread hatred of ourselves even after what we did at Dresden and other not so good acts committed during WWII, by helping the Germans and Japanese to rebuild their countries after we destroyed them. It seems we should be doing the same in the countries we have ravaged with war and other policies so they start liking us again. Killing their children and old people isn't doing it.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #208)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 09:16 PM

214. I think of it a reality

Like I said before, I wish we lived in a perfect world. We don't. We take what we're given and make the best of it.

Do I like the drones? I prefer them to sending troops, or bombing.

I wish we didn't have to, but that is the reality of the world.

The rebuild of Europe was because of the lessons learned from World War 1. WW2 was just a continuation of that war.

We didn't want it to happen again, so we didn't make the Germans repay war damages, and we rebuilt their countries.

I think we tried to rebuild Iraq. The money got sucked up from corruption.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #129)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 05:40 PM

156. Your kind of thinking is a fantasy world

Not to be mean, I would like it if we did live in your world.

But we don't. There's reality to consider.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:53 PM

131. Well, there is that little matter of orders of magnitude less infrastructure

damage AND orders of magnitude less civilian death with drones.

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Response to kestrel91316 (Reply #131)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 03:58 PM

134. One wrongful death is one too many.

Terrorists are a police matter. My husband was Irish and there was that Irish terrorist group that was known as the IRA who terrorized England every chance they got. Not once did the English bomb Ireland to take out some of the terrorists. That's how they are treated the world over except in this country. Also, when the English caught them, they were given their day in court before they were either incarcerated or executed. We are on the wrong side of history on this one.

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:09 PM

170. The bombing of Dresden, while horrible,

possibly unjustified, maybe even a war crime if you really want to go there (though not more so than the Blitz), yet totally understandable at the time, was basically about a fight for survival.

The drone strikes are not a fight for survival. Not even close. It's about decreasing U.S. casualties while still taking out the bad guys (and pretending that there's a lot less collateral damage than there really is). It's an "out" for the Obama admin, basically.

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Response to War Horse (Reply #170)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:12 PM

171. What I really think is that instead of considering dealing with terrorists as a police action,

which is what all saner experts think should be done, it's more profitable for our military/industrial complex to conduct drone war fare. After all there is no profit in involving Interpol to find and arrest these terrorists.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #171)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:41 PM

174. Then I misread your OP and we are in agreement on several points

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 07:18 PM

172. The Allies leveled Dresden indiscriminately. Drone strikes damage individual targets. nt

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:40 PM

200. Karma for killing innocents, but "not on purpose"?

Yep

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Response to Cleita (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 09:08 PM

212. There is one enormous, undeniable, irrefutable, incontrovertible difference....

...between drones and Dresden.

Maybe it's futile, naive, or foolish, but there is a small, maybe infinitesimal, chance, that by my thoughts or actions, in conjunction with millions of other Americans, by petitions or protests, the impact of drones on innocent people, and on the judgment of history may be changed.

There is absolutely nothing I can do to change what happened at Dresden.

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Response to DreamGypsy (Reply #212)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 09:12 PM

213. No nor can you change what happened at Hiroshima, Nagasaki, My Lai and Falluja,

but we certainly can look at these incidents and determine they shall not happen again, nor should we be complacent that it's starting to happen again with the drone warfare. We are just starting with this and if we don't try to end it, it will get bigger and bigger.

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Response to Cleita (Reply #213)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 09:54 PM

217. Exactly.

There's a fine, but impassible, separation between past and future.

Canadian singer/songwriter James Keelaghan wrote a song entitled A Recent Future:

In a recent future, this is past.
May not seem that way because
You're in the middle looking out
There is no will be, there's just was.
What is past is brightly colored,
Sharply drawn, and clear.
The future's sketchy:
Though it's close, it's never here.


but in reality the future is just one action or inaction away.

You have mentioned Hiroshima and Nagasaki several times. If you are conflicted, as I am, about that part of American history, you may appreciate another song, by someone whose grandfather was an historical pawn in that tragedy



Thanks for starting this discussion, Cleita.

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