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  1.  Thank you for the photos. We can so easily get caught in caricatures and, as per your suggestion, taking time to regard something like this can challenge caricatures.

  2.  "Carpet bombing" is an entirely inappropriate term for what happened in 2001.  Without getting into your clear objection to what was, to me, a clearly justified action (Which, of course, could have been supported and continued far differently than occurred.), I would like to point you to (for example) the Wikipedia on "carpet bombing":

The phrase carpet bombing refers to the use of large numbers of unguided gravity bombs, often with a high proportion of incendiary bombs, to attempt the complete destruction of a target region, either to destroy personnel and materiel, or as a means of demoralizing the enemy (see terror bombing). The phrase probably is intended to invoke the image of bombs completely covering an area, in the same way that a carpet covers a floor.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carpet_bombing

This is not an accurate description (in technical terms) for what occurred in Afghanistan.

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!

by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sat Nov 3rd, 2007 at 07:48:26 PM EST
apology, should have used a less technical term.

perhaps "indiscriminate bombing" or "the wide and thorough distribution of antipersonnel bomblets".

The difference between theory and practise in practise ...

by DeAnander (de_at_daclarke_dot_org) on Sat Nov 3rd, 2007 at 09:17:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Actually, even so, I would recommend the work of Human Rights Watch re bombing and collateral damage.

They document quite thoroughly the impact of US (and allied/coalition) bombing efforts at least from Desert Storm through Afghanistan.  

Bomblets are a very serious issue, but what is "thorough"?  

What is "indiscriminate"?

We are likely to speak past each other on this.

The US/Coalition operation in Afghanistan could (should) have been handled much better, especially in terms of taking a long-term approach that truly put creating a better foundation for a healthy society as core. (To me, the US/western world could have won significantly by seeking to make Afghanistan a 'model' of what a prosperous Islamic society, not based on oil (or opium), could be through a collaborative effort that sought to foster a stronger society. Obviously, far from what was purusued.)  Even with all its failures (and they are many, and many faceted), I find "indiscriminate", "widespread", stating that it is worse than what happened under the Soviets, etc to be wrong-headed.

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!

by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 12:19:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
To me, the US/western world could have won significantly by seeking to make Afghanistan a 'model' of what a prosperous Islamic society, not based on oil (or opium), could be through a collaborative effort that sought to foster a stronger society.

This really is a great joke...like it ever was an intention of USA (or any occupier for that matter). Great joke!

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein

by vbo on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 12:30:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Occupiers are generally unlikely to send their armies (hey why did they build up armies now again? because they want peace and stability?) to occupy another country in order for it to prosper. On the other hand history teaches us that almost all occupiers will preach that occupation is done in the best interest of the occupied.

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by A swedish kind of death on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 12:49:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
While the purpose certainly was not to ensure "prosperity", where do you rate the Western occupations of Japan and Germany in your scale?

And, well, what I was suggesting was that Afghanistan be viewed not as "occupation" and, well, if you wish, as part of a campaign to foster a stronger pluralist international society for the decades ahead.

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!

by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 08:30:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I am more familiar with the occupation of Germany, and I found this wikipedia article so I do not have to write it all myself (yey, Tribext):

History of Germany since 1945 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Industrial Disarmament in Western Germany

The initial proposal for the post-surrender policy of the Western powers, the so-called Morgenthau Plan proposed by Henry Morgenthau, Jr., was one of "pastoralization".[2] The Morgenthau Plan, though subsequently ostensibly shelved due to public opposition, influenced occupation policy; most notably through the U.S. punitive occupation directive JCS 1067[3][4] and The industrial plans for Germany[5][5] [6].

History of Germany since 1945 - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The first plan was subsequently followed by a number of new ones, the last signed in 1949. By 1950, after the virtual completion of the by the then much watered-out plans, equipment had been removed from 706 manufacturing plants in the west and steel production capacity had been reduced by 6,700,000 tons.[12]

Timber exports from the U.S. occupation zone were particularly heavy. Sources in the U.S. government stated that the purpose of this was the "ultimate destruction of the war potential of German forests."[13] As a consequence of the practiced clear-felling extensive deforestation resulted which could "be replaced only by long forestry development over perhaps a century."[13]

With the beginning of the Cold war, the U.S. policy gradually changed as it became evident that a return to operation of West German industry was needed not only for the restoration of the whole European economy, but also for the rearmament of West Germany as an ally against the Soviet Union. They feared that the poverty and hunger would drive the West Germans to Communism. General Lucius Clay stated "There is no choice between being a communist on 1,500 calories a day and a believer in democracy on a thousand".

Started as your normal pillaging occupation intended on making Western Germany a dependent client state, the need for a bulwark against communism eventually became greater, so instead it was rebuilt. If you will, communism saved Western Germany.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 11:53:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
(To me, the US/western world could have won significantly by seeking to make Afghanistan a 'model' of what a prosperous Islamic society, not based on oil (or opium), could be through a collaborative effort that sought to foster a stronger society. Obviously, far from what was pursued

Bravo Adam.

And to bring the Diary back to Iran from its next door neighbour, it is exactly in this direction I have been trying to help them go, through implementing new financial infrastructure - eg the, now mythical,"Iran Oil Bourse" concept - based precisely upon the collaborative approach to which you refer.

It's been slow going, but I think current circumstances - ie the ongoing collapse of the US deficit-based system, and the global dollar hegemony - might allow the introduction of new alternatives solidly based upon the ethical values that underpin all the great religions, but which Islam alone continues to prescribe (albeit a prescription often ignored or perverted in practice).

"The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed" William Gibson

by ChrisCook (cojockathotmaildotcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 09:37:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Do not be so fussy. Your bombs and action killed an estimated 500 000 people ...numbers are striking and for us they are just numbers but for them it's their children, parents, relatives.
In Serbia you didn't kill nearly as much (thanks to Milosevic that surrendered) but Serbs will for ever hate Americans (we still hate Turks centuries later). And Serbs used to love anything that comes from America, before... Imagine Iraqis, Afghanis and others...


Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 12:15:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Hmmm

  1.  "killed an estimated 500,000"???  Bombs or what?  Where?  

  2.  Accuracy does matter.

  3.  Fine, hate me.  I walked minefields in Bosnia. I was there, helping 100,000s of Kosovar Albanians fleeing for their lives.  I believe that I have a rather informed perspective.


Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!
by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 12:29:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
  1. Your commander said: "We don't do a body count" (I wonder why?) So because you Americans did not count dead Iraqis and Afghans does that mean that no one will count? 500 000 is a moderate figure and you can find it where ever you look.
  2. Please be accurate with numbers of dead Vietnamese (just for example)
  3. OK I'll hate you (and other Americans like you who are killing people in order to stop killings absurdity that started with Hiroshima and Nagasaki).
I question your statement that you have ever been in Bosnia or Kosovo but if you were there if I am you I would inform my self better about situation before I go to kill other people (to stop killings).Without involvement of USA and NATO there wouldn't be ex-you civil wars at all. Definitely there were other ways to resolve that situation. But why would USA bother trying when they can use a force, train their troops and spend  ammunition and show in a process to anyone else what will happen if they dare to oppose "the only remaining superpower on Earth"...


Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 12:50:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I am troll rating you for calling me a liar.

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!
by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 12:53:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What exactly do you know about Balkan conflicts and ex YU history except that Milosevic is/was a dictator and Serbs are generally evil?
What exactly did you know about Iraq except that Saddam is/was a tyrant and didn't want to work with your guys anymore?
And what for the sake of God do you exactly know about Iran right now except that they want to have nuclear power and you Americans don't like their leader.
I am simply sick of some/most American shallowness (not their government shallowness cause they know what they are doing very well)


Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 01:10:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
  1. Balkan history -- if it matters to you, for example, Michael Boro Petrovich was my undergraduate advisor (author, "A History of Modern Serbia", for example).  And, academic study after that.  My Serbo-Croatian (Serbian, if you prefer) was never very good, a little study on top of my Russian which allowed me (haltingly) to read a few works in original (awhile ago).  

  2.  Iraq/otherwise: again, also academic study,

  3.  And, well, so on ...

Do you really think your stereotype of a 'dumb American' would be spending much time here?

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!
by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 06:20:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Do you really think your stereotype of a 'dumb American' would be spending much time here?
 

Do not get me wrong I don't know anything about you but seems like your academic history studies did not do the job if you see the Balkan situation as simple as that...Serbs bad - mines and killings, Bosnian Muslims and Albanians good , refugees , innocent...Let's bomb Serbs. If only world is so simple.
Your statement about USA spreading democracy like a good example occupying other countries made me think  that your intentions are probably not good or you are young and naïve (and yes shallow in a way no matter what kind of education you have accomplished). Sorry but that's my impression.
I said shallow not "dumb" and I see the difference.
And yes some of the type may be here "on the mission" simply earning their daily bread...who knows? But mostly they are here and there and everywhere because of their strong so called patriotism that makes them blind for reality...


Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 07:46:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You are the one making assumptions.  Where, at all, did I make comments that justify your statements about my perspectives on the Balkans?

And, take a look at what I wrote, again, re an opportunity lost re Afghanistan.

You comments continue to be insulting ... and shallow in their biased reading of what I wrote.

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!

by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 08:16:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I am sorry if I made wrong assumptions.
I felt insulted by what looked to me like your justification of bombardment of Serbia...or Afghanistan ...or any f'kin' place on Earth.
That's why my reaction was jumpy.
If I was wrong I am sorry.If I was right and you do try to justify bombardment then I am not sorry to be shallow or what ever you want to call me...


Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 09:01:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Rate me what ever you want! This is a free cyber space!

Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind...Albert Einstein
by vbo on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 01:14:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Discussion was re bombing.  See the Human Rights Watch analyses of bombing campaigns.

There are not 100,000s killed by bombs for decades.   The major impact from Desert Storm was post war, sanctions (including inability to repair bomb damage to sites such as water purification).  

The analysis showing 500,000-1 million (or so) excess deaths in Iraq since the 2003 invasion is credible, more or less, to me.  And, well, yet another reason why (ex post facto) I was right to have opposed the war.

Etc ...

Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart. NOW!!!

by a siegel (siegeadATgmailIGNORETHISdotPLEASEcom) on Sun Nov 4th, 2007 at 01:00:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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