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Thread: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Which makes me wonder why some folks really had a problem with invading Iraq. Saddam Hussein was insane and inhumane. He murdered 300+ people. I doubt Joeseph Kony can boast such numbers.

    Ultimately, we have to ask ourselves who we're going in to help fight the LRA.

    Is it the Sudanese People's Liberation Army? They're fighting against the LRA, so we can list them among our, "allies", in the region.

    GoSS: SPLA Commits Atrocities against Shilluk Civilians | Pachodo.org English Articles

    Is it the Uganda People's Army? They've committed atrocities against the people of Uganda and are among our, "allies", that we're supporting.

    Uganda: Army and Rebels Commit Atrocities in the North | Human Rights Watch
    This is one of those extremely rare instances where me and apdst agree, and that says something.

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Which makes me wonder why some folks really had a problem with invading Iraq. Saddam Hussein was insane and inhumane. He murdered 300+ people. I doubt Joeseph Kony can boast such numbers.
    People were upset with Iraq because we entered under false pretenses and because it was a distraction from Afghanistan. If 9/11 hadn't happened and Bush or another president had argued that we should go into Iraq specifically in order to stop Saddam from being so insane and inhumane, the response to our invasion may have been much different.

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by theplaydrive View Post
    People were upset with Iraq because we entered under false pretenses and because it was a distraction from Afghanistan. If 9/11 hadn't happened and Bush or another president had argued that we should go into Iraq specifically in order to stop Saddam from being so insane and inhumane, the response to our invasion may have been much different.
    I think we all know better than that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    All wars are entered into for political reasons. If there's no political objective, it's totally pointless to become involved.
    I mean "political reasons" in the sense of doing something that advances the interests of the US government in some material way. I think those types of missions are more prone to mission creep, because our elected officials and military commanders often don't want to honestly state the mission objectives in the first place. Our recent foray into Libya was a good example of mission creep, and the humanitarian justifications were baloney used to disguise the fact that the US government simply wanted to get rid of Gaddafi for our own geopolitical reasons.

    In contrast, getting involved in things like this where there isn't really any significant American interest at stake aside from altruism tend to go better because we are able to focus on the mission at hand. And unlike, say, Somalia, where we sided with a weak pro-American faction against a weak anti-American faction and ended up with a disaster, in this situation we are siding with the established governments of the countries in question against a small band of brutal murderers who everyone hates.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 10-15-11 at 08:21 PM.
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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    I think we all know better than that.
    Do we though? Many Americans have a soft spot for humanitarian interventions... if they are done at the right time. If 9/11 had not happened and we were in a good, positive economic place, I could imagine people not having a big a problem with it if we went about it with other countries. (I personally wouldn't like it, but I have more conservative foreign policy preference than a lot of people anyway.)

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    I mean "political reasons" in the sense of doing something that advances the interests of the US government in some material way.
    I don't buy that distinction. The "US government," even when it comes to foreign policy, is not some monolithic living entity that has interests of its own. Ultimately it is made up of individuals who make decisions, all with their own agendas and interests. This is precisely why the whole notion of "blood for oil" is, to me, overly simplistic.

    Our recent foray into Libya was a good example of mission creep, and the humanitarian justifications were baloney used to disguise the fact that the US government simply wanted to get rid of Gaddafi for our own geopolitical reasons.
    I don't buy that either, Libya is also a case that is quite a bit more complex than that in my opinion. This statement may apply more so for the European involvement in Libya, but not ours.

    I think those types of missions are more prone to mission creep, because our elected officials and military commanders often don't want to honestly state the mission objectives in the first place.
    The missions most susceptible to things like mission creep, in my opinion, are precisely those where a small commitment is given in the first place. Then the people realize that the situation on the ground consists of problems that can't be solved with just a few advisors. As a result, they ask for more and more support until we are fully committed. The mere existence of the Lord's Resistance Army illuminates and reflects many complex problems with the history and geography and politics of that region. These forces, the root of the problem of lawlessness in so many subSaharan Africa, simply can't be dealt with using just a few dozen military advisors.
    Last edited by StillBallin75; 10-15-11 at 08:28 PM.

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by apdst View Post
    Which makes me wonder why some folks really had a problem with invading Iraq. Saddam Hussein was insane and inhumane. He murdered 300+ people. I doubt Joeseph Kony can boast such numbers.
    It's a cost/benefit analysis. Removing Saddam Hussein created far more problems than it was worth, whereas sending a Predator drone up the ass of a few hundred brutal thugs with machetes would be comparatively easy. And it would be welcomed by everyone in the region, rather than igniting simmering factional tensions as it did in Iraq.

    Ultimately, we have to ask ourselves who we're going in to help fight the LRA.

    Is it the Sudanese People's Liberation Army? They're fighting against the LRA, so we can list them among our, "allies", in the region.

    GoSS: SPLA Commits Atrocities against Shilluk Civilians | Pachodo.org English Articles

    Is it the Uganda People's Army? They've committed atrocities against the people of Uganda and are among our, "allies", that we're supporting.

    Uganda: Army and Rebels Commit Atrocities in the North | Human Rights Watch
    We will be working with the established governments of Uganda and the DRC. Neither of which are perfect, but they're far better than Joseph Kony. And in any case, it's not like Joseph Kony has any base of political support that's going to suddenly turn against the United States.
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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    I mean "political reasons" in the sense of doing something that advances the interests of the US government in some material way. I think those types of missions are more prone to mission creep, because our elected officials and military commanders often don't want to honestly state the mission objectives in the first place. Our recent foray into Libya was a good example of mission creep, and the humanitarian justifications were baloney used to disguise the fact that the US government simply wanted to get rid of Gaddafi for our own geopolitical reasons.
    If the United States isn't going to see some material benefit from engaging hostile forces on the battlefield, there's no point in getting involved. This mission is no less susceptable to mission creep than any other. Government don't want to hurt their own credibility by either losing American lives, without attempting to follow through with the mission, or by deserting allies in the middle of the fight. Not tomention what such actions would do to troop morale,

    In contrast, getting involved in things like this where there isn't really any significant American interest at stake aside from altruism tend to go better because we are able to focus on the mission at hand. And unlike, say, Somalia, where we sided with a weak pro-American faction against a weak anti-American faction and ended up with a disaster, in this situation we are siding with the established governments of the countries in question against a small band of brutal murderers who everyone hates.
    The government troops are no less murderous than the LRA. I've already provided evidence of that.

    Personally, I say we send in heavy forward forces and kill them all, the government troops and the LRA.
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by theplaydrive View Post
    Do we though? Many Americans have a soft spot for humanitarian interventions... if they are done at the right time. If 9/11 had not happened and we were in a good, positive economic place, I could imagine people not having a big a problem with it if we went about it with other countries. (I personally wouldn't like it, but I have more conservative foreign policy preference than a lot of people anyway.)
    Yeah! Sure!
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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    Re: Obama Sends U.S. Troops to Central Africa to Aid Campaign Against Rebel Group

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    It's a cost/benefit analysis. Removing Saddam Hussein created far more problems than it was worth, whereas sending a Predator drone up the ass of a few hundred brutal thugs with machetes would be comparatively easy. And it would be welcomed by everyone in the region, rather than igniting simmering factional tensions as it did in Iraq.
    You think things are going to be different in Uganda? All we're doing is killing one pack of assholes, so another pack of assholes can gain more power. We won't be preventing anything. The atrocities will still be committed, just not by the LRA.



    We will be working with the established governments of Uganda and the DRC. Neither of which are perfect, but they're far better than Joseph Kony. And in any case, it's not like Joseph Kony has any base of political support that's going to suddenly turn against the United States.
    Based on what logic? The government troops have committed atrocities, just not as many atrocities as the LRA?

    Ever hear of the Contras? You people are still beating Reagan up over that. The Uganda op is nothing but a repeat of history.
    Quote Originally Posted by Top Cat View Post
    At least Bill saved his transgressions for grown women. Not suggesting what he did was OK. But he didn't chase 14 year olds.

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