Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Half a dozen years later, our eggs are still in the wrong basket

14 comments:

Cajun Tiger said...

"as we have for 200 years...lead the free world by example rather than at the barrel of a weapon"

So I guess not a single weapon was used during the Civil War, WWI or WWII as we led the world to freedom?

Don't quit your day job and try not to read the speech next time.

Ian McGibboney said...

Well, the victors in all three of those wars weren't the aggressors, were they?

Also, how nice of you to notice I was reading the speech. If I'd gone off-the-cuff, you'd be criticizing me for that. But, I guess you should take every advantage you can get.

Nick said...

Actually, if I'm not mistaken, the South tried to succeed from the Union, not over-take them.

Therefore, the victorious party in the Civil War was the aggressors, a right as they were in trying to (hypocritically, though) outlaw slavery. Grant had to hurry home and free his own slaves.

oyster said...

Precisely how did we "Lead the world to freedom" in the Civil War?

Slavery in much of the developed Western world had been abolished decades prior.

Ian McGibboney said...

Nick, the word you're looking for is 'secede.' The south did not succeed in that. Whether or not you call the Civil War the War of Northern Aggression (I don't), the reason it happened because a region of the United States decided to break from the Union because of some perverted illogical extreme of "states' rights." In that sense, the Civil War was necessary to preserve the nation.

In the aftermath of WWII, the Allied powers had the Marshall Plan, which helped the defeated countries become economically prosperous again. We achieved diplomacy with Germany and Japan because the Allies realized that stable countries aren't warring countries. Where is the diplomacy in Iraq?

Tell me how Iraq is like that in any sense, or like any other war besides Vietnam. In both cases, the U.S. intervened in sovereign situations, had only broad (and dubious) justifications and wound up occupying the area for a futile cause at the costs of thousands of lives.

The Iraq war is a disaster, and must be rightfully separated from the conflict in Afghanistan that actually has something to do with 9/11.

Nick said...

I don't call the Civil War the War of Northern Aggression. However, the first shot was fired by the North, as they tried to prevent the South from separating from the Union. You asked in which war the aggressor won, and I answered.

As far Iraq, alot of things have gone wrong, and alot of things have gone right.

But what is telling is that for the Democratic Presidential nomination, the one candidate with military experience and a son soon to leave for Iraq receives almost zilch support because he doesn't constantly bang the "Pull Everyone Out Now" rhetoric.

Cajun Tiger said...

Nope...wouldn't have critised for off the cuff.

Very good try at changing the topic and avoiding saying you were wrong in your comment. The quote I quoted had nothing to do with an aggressor but that you implied that the US has never used a weapon while leading the free world.

Oyster...you are very correct in that statement...I shouldn't have used that as one of my examples on that specific point and just stuck to the two world wars.

Cajun Tiger said...

oops...meant critized not critised. Don't want to incur the wrath of Ian's editorial acumen in an attempt to avoid the topic again.

Ian McGibboney said...

I find it interesting that you attack the delivery of what I say rather than what's being said. And yes, I do value correct language skills because it really helps anyone's case when they look and sound like they value education. That said, however, "criticized" can be spelled both ways.

Anyway, I did address your comment. Directly. Wars aren't about "spreading freedom" -- thats what diplomacy is for. Wars are acts of aggression, regardless of cause, rarely resulting in good news for those who make the first strike. And when gains ARE made in war, they usually result in tangible spoils, such as land control. "Spreading freedom" after WWII came with the Marshall Plan and the formation of the UN - both diplomatic policies. We learned from WWI that defeating an enemy militarily and leaving it to rot results in more war down the line. It takes far more than weapons to leave lasting peace.

Cajun Tiger said...

Seems to me I did attack what you said which you still have not addressed. You said in the past America has not used weapons to spread freedom. I guess we defeated Germany and Japan by pure diplomacy without firing one shot. Here you go...I'll help you...repeat after me..."I was wrong. We have used weapons to spead freedom and secure an area first by defeating the bad guys which then allowed reconstruction and diplomacy to be effective. To say America has never used a weapon to spread freedom was not accurate. I apologize for my mistake." See, that wasn't to hard now was it?

Ian McGibboney said...

Germany and Japan are not where they are today because we invaded their countries and occupied them for years while they groped for a government. We helped them get back on their feet with diplomatic initiatives that ensured their society would not fester in the kind of situation Iraq is in now.

It's important to note that Japan attacked us and that Germany was invading our European allies with eyes on us as well. Neither was true of Iraq in 2003.

Freedom has never come from invading a nation, occupying it for years as its people killed each other and having no diplomatic strategy to end the bloodshed. That goes double when the majority of the nation doesn't want us there and/or cannot handle a democracy. That's why Vietnam failed and why Iraq is going that way.

Cajun Tiger said...

Still waiting for your apology for a statement that wasn't true as opposed to continuing to change the topic away from what you actually said...

We completely destoyed the German and Japanese forces and completely broke the will of the nations and people through a very brutal war to where we had free reign after. Due to the PC wars we are forced to fight now we have to dance around the fact that this is a war and the will of the enemy has never been broken like it should have been and could have been without one hand tied behind our back.

Read my two recent posts 'Conflict of Feelings' and 'Risking it All for Freedom' and you will see the true feelings of a majority of Iraqis when they speak freely and not out of fear.

Ian McGibboney said...

I will not apologize just because you are unable to get my point. Successful, sustained democracies do not happen because of force, but because of diplomatic policies based in the reality of what the people want and need.

The lesson of Vietnam was that enforcing a government (and a way of life) at the barrel of a gun is not possible. In WWII, we helped rebuild the countries we defeated. We did not do it by occupying Japan or Germany, but rather through diplomatic means agreed upon by both sides. Lookwhat happened when we intervened in the Korea civil war in the 1950s - we're STILL there! And we'd still be in Vietnam if Nixon and Johnson's "stay the course"-esque strategies had been followed.

Occupation doesn't work, period. If it did, Britain would rule the world and we'd still be subjects of the crown.

Cajun Tiger said...

That is not what you said in your diatribe. If you want to say I'm sorry for mispeaking and this is what I meant to say, I'll let you slide with that half-hearted effort...so still waiting...

We did not occupy Germany or Japan??? Or you serious??? We are still in Germany and Japan and controlled those countries militarily for years after the war before we turned them over to a civil government once we rebuilt them.