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Author Topic:   Terrorism in London
Modulous
Member (Idle past 301 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 286 of 313 (223416)
07-12-2005 1:42 PM
Reply to: Message 273 by Silent H
07-12-2005 7:48 AM


Re: pretzel with cheese

What a way to try and back out of a position. Look there is no escaping the fact that the above means you THOUGHT no one had used that rationale. You keep your eyes open and you have never heard anyone say it, it never reached you. That means you THOUGHT no one had used it. Yes you COULD be wrong, but you did not THINK you were wrong. You thought that I was.

Well, that is certainly a possible way of looking at it, but it seems to take an absolute approach. I was simply not aware that an argument had been used. I didn't think I was right or wrong. If you told me that there is a small tribe of men called the Umbombogos living in Africa who ate lions for supper, and you showed me their constitution, pictures, and a book that details their life. It would be a bit strange to say "And you thought Umbombogos didn't exist!".

Basically, being ignorant of a fact, and thinking a fact isn't so are different things, with different implications.

However, this is all pointless nitpicking.

And so the strawman continues... however I will agree that this leaves Blair only two options on how to spin his metaphor. I do find it funny that you are spending so much time worrying about my opinion and use of the word "protect" or "prevent", than a statesman's use of that same imagery to cover a massive error, and you chalk that up to politics, oh well.

There is another possibility other than a strawman. People are very sensitive about opponents creating strawmen, and use any misunderstandings as evidence that your opponent is being somehow dishonest. Strawmen creations are deliberate. We are attempting to communicate our ideas with one another so that we understand what we are trying to say. In order to make sure that I am understanding your position, I try and reiterate what I think you are saying so you can understand my objections, and correct me if I am not understanding you.

Rather than cry strawman everytime your opponent does not seem clear on your position, perhaps take it as a sign that a communications failure of some kind has taken place. I think I'm a bright guy, you're a bright guy, lets not accuse one another of things.

I don't really want to go through the effort of trying to discuss this with you, if the discussion isn't going to be friendly, and we start down the road of nitpicking, semantics, and accusations of unfair play.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 273 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 7:48 AM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 288 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 2:08 PM Modulous has responded

Silent H
Member (Idle past 4017 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 287 of 313 (223422)
07-12-2005 1:59 PM
Reply to: Message 283 by Tal
07-12-2005 12:53 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
I am not denying that some Muslims use Islamic scripture to back their militant fundamentalist beliefs. So do Xian militant fundies and Jewish militant fundies.

The point is that one cannot say the Koran says any particular thing, and that inherently Islam is for war until all else are dead, and against democracy.

CS's argument was that only those that are militant fundamentalists are the "real" muslims. That is patently absurd.


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 283 by Tal, posted 07-12-2005 12:53 PM Tal has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 291 by CanadianSteve, posted 07-12-2005 4:00 PM Silent H has responded

  
Silent H
Member (Idle past 4017 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 288 of 313 (223425)
07-12-2005 2:08 PM
Reply to: Message 286 by Modulous
07-12-2005 1:42 PM


Re: pretzel with cheese
I was simply not aware that an argument had been used. I didn't think I was right or wrong.

That simply is not true. If you did not know then you would not be using your comment you hadn't heard it as a counter argument. You'd say instead "Oh, really, I hadn't heard that, how interesting."

Let's put it this way. Perhaps you weren't saying that you thought it couldn't possibly have been said, but you were certainly doubtful that it had been.

Rather than cry strawman everytime your opponent does not seem clear on your position, perhaps take it as a sign that a communications failure of some kind has taken place.

Fair enough. However, it looked to me originally like moving the goal posts. Your explanations of what you meant indicate a strawman to me.

It may be that you honestly keep missing what I am saying, but it seems unlikely to me so I really do think you are constructing a strawman.

In any case the issue is that (intentional or not) you continually misrepresent my position, and build your own argument on that representation, despite my repeated clarifications. I mean how many times do I have to say I'm not saying he should resign because of this, and this was not a result of a policy failure, before you stop representing my position as including those things?

It is exasperating for me.


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 286 by Modulous, posted 07-12-2005 1:42 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 290 by Modulous, posted 07-12-2005 2:53 PM Silent H has responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6702
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.8


Message 289 of 313 (223439)
07-12-2005 2:45 PM
Reply to: Message 283 by Tal
07-12-2005 12:53 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
Hello, Tal. You appear not to have read the previous posts in this thread -- not that I blame you since it has gotten a little long. However, holmes' post, to which you are responding, is one in a rather lengthy argument on a very specific point. The claim being considered is whether Islam itself is inherently a violent religion, and, in particular, whether it is by its nature more violent that Christianity. The majority of your post is irrelevant to this point.

The only point that is remotely relevant is your citing a Muslim spokesman as saying that Islam considers civilians to be a fair target in war. Holmes has already pointed out that this one person does not necessarily speak for the majority of Muslims; this one person's opinon does not demonstrate the Islam is, by its nature, a violent religion unless you can show that his opinion is indeed the natural conclusion from the precepts of Islam as well as showing that the opposite opinion, that civilians should not be targeted in a war, is not also a natural conclusion from the precepts of Islam.

But I also want to bring up two additional points. One is a purely semantic issue. The comment that civilians are a legitimate target in war is not necessarily advocating violence. It is perfectly logical for someone who advocates peace to say, "War is bad, war is to be avoided, one should not begin hostilities. However, if it is necessary to go to war, one has to do what one must to win, even if it involves purposely targeting civilians." You and I may disagree with that statement, however someone may make that statement and still be sincerely interested in maintaining friendly, peaceful relations with anyone else who is also interested in peace.

Finally, the targeting of civilians is certainly not confined to Islam. Certainly any modern military's concern to avoid civilian casualties seem more to do with the presence of TV cameras than any Christian or Western values on the sanctity of civilian lives. At any rate the colonial expansion of the Christian Europeans into Africa and Asia, as well as the Christian Americans' colonial expansion into western North America, are filled with atrocities committed against women and children and other noncombatants, so clearly concern over the safety of civilians is not a principle that can be used to distinguish between Islam and Christianity.

Edited to correct a few typos.

This message has been edited by Chiroptera, 12-Jul-2005 07:18 PM


This message is a reply to:
 Message 283 by Tal, posted 07-12-2005 12:53 PM Tal has not yet responded

Modulous
Member (Idle past 301 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 290 of 313 (223441)
07-12-2005 2:53 PM
Reply to: Message 288 by Silent H
07-12-2005 2:08 PM


Re: pretzel with cheese
That simply is not true. If you did not know then you would not be using your comment you hadn't heard it as a counter argument. You'd say instead "Oh, really, I hadn't heard that, how interesting."

Why not read it again. You'd find that the counter argument was actually that I hadn't heard it so it doesn't seem likely the rationale was a principle thing that Blair was trying to convince us of.

It may be that you honestly keep missing what I am saying, but it seems unlikely to me so I really do think you are constructing a strawman.

In any case the issue is that (intentional or not) you continually misrepresent my position, and build your own argument on that representation, despite my repeated clarifications. I mean how many times do I have to say I'm not saying he should resign because of this, and this was not a result of a policy failure, before you stop representing my position as including those things?

I am not constructing a strawman, nor am I misrepresenting your position. I have to have discuss what I think is your position. If I think your position is something other than what it is, that is not misrepresentation (I am not saying Holmes claims this, which is clearly wrong). I thought I had made it clear I understand your point re: that Blair shouldn't resign because of this, but because of previous mistakes. My own opinion is that if Blair should have resigned, it should have been for the actual mistakes and issues such as going to Iraq in the first place, not after some symbollic terrorist attack.

Since the mistakes happened before the last election, and his party elected to keep him as their leader, and we gave Labour the most seats. Blair has paid the political price for his actions (he lost a crap load of seats) and that is the end of it. No new mistakes have been since the price was paid, life goes on. In many eyes he has redeemed himself massively in the past month (including the situation surrounding the bomb) and it would be bad form of him to resign (after all that would 'giving the terrorists what they want' and so could possibly boost AQ morale and encourage further attacks.

Thus, if Blair resigned, it might be decent as a person, but it would characterize him forever as an awful leader of people. Some people think that already of course, but even some of his supporters would join that camp if he bowed out now.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 288 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 2:08 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 293 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 5:34 PM Modulous has responded

CanadianSteve
Member (Idle past 4670 days)
Posts: 756
From: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Joined: 06-06-2005


Message 291 of 313 (223447)
07-12-2005 4:00 PM
Reply to: Message 287 by Silent H
07-12-2005 1:59 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
You attribute to me: "CS's argument was that only those that are militant fundamentalists are the "real" muslims."

That's not what I said. Rather, i said that the terrorist islamists are no less true to their faith, and that is why they have too much quiet support in Islamic culture. Islam is presently at civil war with itself, a war fought between those who believe in militant Jihad, and those who do not. This is not a new war. It has been fought on and off for centuries. That is because the faith does, in fact, call for war against infidels until all the world is conquered and ruled by islam. And yet, that is so immoral that a great many Muslims have refused to acquiesce and insist on interpreting the faith otherwise. That's good, and when democracy comes to the Islmaic world - and it will - these people will win out. In the meantime, we westerners haev been dragged into their civil war.

Here's are excerptes from three articles that in part explains this.

Mark Steyn:
Terrorism ends when the broader culture refuses to tolerate it. There would be few if any suicide bombers in the Middle East if "martyrdom" were not glorified by imams and politicians, if pictures of local "martyrs" were not proudly displayed in West Bank grocery stores, if Muslim banks did not offer special "martyrdom" accounts to the relicts thereof, if schools did not run essay competitions on "Why I want to grow up to be a martyr"
shortened the link

""Breeding grounds for suicide bombers," from Tavleen Singh in Indian Express:

With Ayodhya on my mind I sat down to write a piece on how Islamic terrorism will not be defeated until we deal with the mullahs and madrasas who breed the suicide bombers and Islamic fundamentalists. I was still writing it when London exploded. This was not some distant horror but deeply personal since I have a son who lives in that city. He could have been on the bus, on the underground or just walking down a street. When I tried desperately to call him I found it impossible to get through and thought of all the others who might be trying as desperately to call a loved one and those who may have lost sons, brothers, sisters, parents, friends just because Islamic fundamentalists believe terrorism is their sacred duty.

Tony Blair called the acts of terrorism in London ''barbaric'' and said that the terrorists would not succeed because the civilised world was more determined to defend ''our values and our way of life'' than the terrorists are to cause death and destruction. But, they will succeed because no Western leaders and certainly not our own ''secular'' lot have shown any determination when it comes to dealing with the mullahs and the venomous ideology they preach through Islamic seminaries...

The Prophet's mission, as interpreted by the mullahs, also involves converting us infidels to the faith because otherwise we are a constant threat to Islam. This is where the problem begins.

If the mullahs used the religious seminaries to teach love and peace and respect for other people and religions, Muslims would find it easier to live with the rest of the world. But, they teach jehad and bigotry and it is from these teachings that Islamic terrorism is born. In India, if we want to tackle the problem we could begin by demanding a White Paper from the government on how many madrasas exist on our secular soil, when they were
built and where they get their funds from. I am willing to bet that most have come up in the past 15 years and that the money comes from the same Middle Eastern countries that funded last week's bombings in London and 9/11. As long as we pretend that this is not true we remain in danger of losing the war against terrorism.

Yep."
http://jihadwatch.org/

In his just-released, absorbing, and excellent book, Understanding Jihad (University of California Press), David Cook of Rice University dismisses the low-grade debate that has raged since 9/11 over the nature of jihad – whether it is a form of offensive warfare or (more pleasantly) a type of moral self-improvement.

Mr. Cook dismisses as "bathetic and laughable" John Esposito's contention that jihad refers to "the effort to lead a good life." Throughout history and at present, Mr. Cook definitively establishes, the term primarily means "warfare with spiritual significance."

His achievement lies in tracing the evolution of jihad from Muhammad to Osama, following how the concept has changed through fourteen centuries. This summary does not do justice to Cook's extensive research, prolific examples, and thoughtful analysis, but even a thumbnail sketch suggests jihad's evolution.

The Koran invites Muslims to give their lives in exchange for assurances of paradise.

The Hadith (accounts of Muhammad's actions and personal statements) elaborate on the Koran, providing specific injunctions about treaties, pay, booty, prisoners, tactics, and much else. Muslim jurisprudents then wove these precepts into a body of law.

During his years in power, the prophet engaged in an average of nine military campaigns a year, or one every five to six weeks; thus did jihad help define Islam from its very dawn. Conquering and humiliating non-Muslims was a main feature of the prophet's jihad.

During the first several centuries of Islam, "the interpretation of jihad was unabashedly aggressive and expansive." After the conquests subsided, non-Muslims hardly threatened and Sufi notions of jihad as self-improvement developed in complement to the martial meaning.

The Crusades, the centuries-long European effort to control the Holy Land, gave jihad a new urgency and prompted what Cook calls the "classical" theory of jihad. Finding themselves on the defensive led to a hardening of Muslim attitudes.

The Mongol invasions of the thirteenth century subjugated much of the Muslim world, a catastrophe only partially mitigated by the Mongols' nominal conversion to Islam. Some thinkers, Ibn Taymiya (d. 1328) in particular, came to distinguish between true and false Muslims; and to give jihad new prominence by judging the validity of a person's faith according to his willingness to wage jihad.

Nineteenth century "purification jihads" took place in several regions against fellow Muslims. The most radical and consequential of these was the Wahhabis' jihad in Arabia. Drawing on Ibn Taymiya, they condemned most non-Wahhabi Muslims as infidels (kafirs) and waged jihad against them.

European imperialism inspired jihadi resistance efforts, notably in India, the Caucasus, Somalia, Sudan, Algeria, and Morocco, but all in the end failed. This disaster meant new thinking was needed.

Islamist new thinking began in Egypt and India in the 1920s but jihad acquired its contemporary quality of radical offensive warfare only with the Egyptian thinker Sayyid Qutb (d. 1966). Qutb developed Ibn Taymiya's distinction between true and false Muslims to deem non-Islamists to be non-Muslims and then declare jihad on them. The group that assassinated Anwar El-Sadat in 1981 then added the idea of jihad as the path to world domination.

The anti-Soviet war in Afghanistan led to the final step (so far) in this evolution. In Afghanistan, for the first time, jihadis assembled from around the world to fight on behalf of Islam. A Palestinian, Abdullah Azzam, became the theorist of global jihad in the 1980s, giving it an unheard-of central role, judging each Muslim exclusively by his contribution to jihad, and making jihad the salvation of Muslims and Islam. Out of this quickly came suicide terrorism and bin Laden.

Mr. Cook's erudite and timely study has many implications, including these:

* The current understanding of jihad is more extreme than at any prior time in Islamic history.
* This extremism suggests that the Muslim world is going through a phase, one that must be endured and overcome, comparable to analogously horrid periods in Germany, Russia, and China.
* Jihad having evolved steadily until now, doubtless will continue to do so in the future.
* The excessive form of jihad currently practiced by Al-Qaeda and others could, Mr. Cook semi-predicts, lead to its "decisive rejection" by a majority of Muslims. Jihad then could turn into a non-violent concept.

The great challenge for moderate Muslims (and their non-Muslim allies) is to make that rejection come about, and with due haste.

This message has been edited by AdminJar, 07-12-2005 03:04 PM


This message is a reply to:
 Message 287 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 1:59 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 294 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 5:58 PM CanadianSteve has not yet responded
 Message 297 by Chiroptera, posted 07-12-2005 8:15 PM CanadianSteve has responded

Jazzns
Member (Idle past 2109 days)
Posts: 2657
From: A Better America
Joined: 07-23-2004


Message 292 of 313 (223450)
07-12-2005 5:14 PM
Reply to: Message 283 by Tal
07-12-2005 12:53 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
The purposefull targetting of civillians has been one of the primary methods of making war for the US in its two largest wars in its history.

In The Civil War it was an explicit part of the Union strategy to eliminate Confederate infastructure which included a scorched earth policy right through the hearland of the south up to the doorsteps of Charleston. The weakest part of the Confederacy was its support structure and so it made perfect sense to attack that rather than the formidible Confederate Army. Although there was no outright order to kill Confederate civillians, burning their homes, farms, towns, etc was effectivly the same thing.

One of the only ways we were able to keep the upper hand against both Germany and Japan during WWII was an explicit policy of targetting civillians and civillian infastructure. The goal was to remove both the enemies ability to produce instruments of war AND to remove the will to fight out of a battered citizenry. We killed more Japanese civilians and caused more damage to Japanese infastructure with conventional bombardment of Tokoyo then we did in Hiroshima and Nagasaki combined.

In the hardest and most important wars the US has ever fought a major component of how we won was a policy of deliberatly targetting enemy citizenry even when the citizens were our own.


Organizations worth supporting:
www.eff.org (Protect Privacy and Security)
www.aclu.org (Protect Civil Rights)
www.aaup.org (Protect Higher Learning)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 283 by Tal, posted 07-12-2005 12:53 PM Tal has not yet responded

Silent H
Member (Idle past 4017 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 293 of 313 (223453)
07-12-2005 5:34 PM
Reply to: Message 290 by Modulous
07-12-2005 2:53 PM


Re: pretzel with cheese
You'd find that the counter argument was actually that I hadn't heard it so it doesn't seem likely the rationale was a principle thing that Blair was trying to convince us of.

How could that be a counter when my position is that that wasn't the principle thing Blair was trying to convince anyone of? I know I've said that a couple times.

Thus, if Blair resigned, it might be decent as a person, but it would characterize him forever as an awful leader of people. Some people think that already of course, but even some of his supporters would join that camp if he bowed out now.

Welcome to an apparently near complete understanding of my position. If he truly cared about the nation... which is being a decent leader... he would do what is right regardless that it would mark him as an awful leader, even to some of his current followers. Instead of doing what is right for the nation, he will do what is right for his image which he identifies as the wellbeing of his nation.

My own opinion is that if Blair should have resigned, it should have been for the actual mistakes and issues such as going to Iraq in the first place, not after some symbollic terrorist attack.

Oh I agree, he certainly should have stepped down earlier. I was only backing someone else's comment that he must feel shaken with his decisions. I noted that he was looking shaken, and hence if he was decent (assuming he was truly shaken) he would step down.


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 290 by Modulous, posted 07-12-2005 2:53 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 295 by Modulous, posted 07-12-2005 6:01 PM Silent H has responded

  
Silent H
Member (Idle past 4017 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 294 of 313 (223460)
07-12-2005 5:58 PM
Reply to: Message 291 by CanadianSteve
07-12-2005 4:00 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
i said that the terrorist islamists are no less true to their faith

Oh come on, do you really need me to repost your own words? You said that those who were not militant would have to rationalize away the true meaning of the words of their faith. I believe you even said delude themselves.

The above is also true for Xian and Jewish terrorists, and you made some differentiation for them. Thus only errant Xians and Jews would be violent and against democracy and only errant muslims would be against violence and for democracy.

That is because the faith does, in fact, call for war against infidels until all the world is conquered and ruled by islam. And yet, that is so immoral that a great many Muslims have refused to acquiesce and insist on interpreting the faith otherwise.

See this is what I am talking about. That above clearly says that only the militants are acting on their true faith.

By the way there is no call for war against infidels till the world is conquered, I have already shown the excerpts which show otherwise, and others have already pointed out that your clips are taken out of context.

Yes there are militants, just as there are in Xianity and Judaism, who focus on the "war-like" versus to back their power schemes. But they are not following the actual faith, while those who read things in context and so prefer nonmilitance have chosen some errant interpretation.

In the meantime, we westerners haev been dragged into their civil war.

WTF are you talking about? Western powers have been playing imperialist chess with Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and the Palestinian territories for well over 100 years. The US's last move against Russia was to fan the flames of militant fundamentalists to crush the moderates in Afghanistan and drive out the Soviets.

Terrorism ends when the broader culture refuses to tolerate it. There would be few if any suicide bombers in the Middle East if "martyrdom" were not glorified by imams and politicians

This would be true but it holds true just as much for the Israelis and Xians as it does for Muslims. The first major terror attack was Israeli on Palestinian. I believe that also includes the first bombing. The Palestinians have only been emulating what has happened to them. You will note that now that Israel will be moving Israeli extermists, the same atmosphere is being taken up among the extremists as had been seen in the Palestinian militants.

Indeed it was Israeli militants who killed their own PM, so as to end successful negotiations. And it was Xian militants that created one of the worst slaughters in that region, which was of Palestinians when the Israeli army turned a blind eye.

Mr Cook's notes are somewhat accurate though ethnocentrically biased. Quite the gloss over on Xian and Jewish expansionism and militancy. Apparently if you have better firepower and are on the offensive rather than the defensive, one is now the nonexpansionist and nonmilitant.


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 291 by CanadianSteve, posted 07-12-2005 4:00 PM CanadianSteve has not yet responded

  
Modulous
Member (Idle past 301 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 295 of 313 (223462)
07-12-2005 6:01 PM
Reply to: Message 293 by Silent H
07-12-2005 5:34 PM


Re: pretzel with cheese
How could that be a counter when my position is that that wasn't the principle thing Blair was trying to convince anyone of? I know I've said that a couple times.

Of course, reading the original comments you'll find it wasn't really presented as a counter argument, just commentary. It wasn't like Blair was trying to convince us we were safe because of Iraq, if he was, then I'd be more inclined to agree that a resignation would be decent.

Welcome to an apparently near complete understanding of my position. If he truly cared about the nation... which is being a decent leader... he would do what is right regardless that it would mark him as an awful leader, even to some of his current followers. Instead of doing what is right for the nation, he will do what is right for his image which he identifies as the wellbeing of his nation.

Clearly whether or not it would be good for Britain to have Blair resign is a matter of opinion. If it would be good for the country, then he (edit for clarification: 'he' meaning the a hypothetical perfect leader) would leave regardless of what was popular, much like Cromwell should have insisted in his refusal to lead.

I noted that he was looking shaken, and hence if he was decent (assuming he was truly shaken) he would step down.

Surely, if the PM gets upset when his country suffers an attack, that's a good thing? It's better than Bush's immediate response to Sept 11 :) I would like a PM who is clearly upset but resolute. Despite the fact that I disagree with much of Blair's style, I have to accept that I am glad to have him rather than Howard at this time. Still, I reckon Gordon Brown would have dealt with this better, but what are you gonna do?

This message has been edited by Modulous, Tue, 12-July-2005 11:16 PM


This message is a reply to:
 Message 293 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 5:34 PM Silent H has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 296 by Silent H, posted 07-12-2005 6:36 PM Modulous has responded

Silent H
Member (Idle past 4017 days)
Posts: 7405
From: satellite of love
Joined: 12-11-2002


Message 296 of 313 (223470)
07-12-2005 6:36 PM
Reply to: Message 295 by Modulous
07-12-2005 6:01 PM


Re: pretzel with cheese
It wasn't like Blair was trying to convince us we were safe because of Iraq, if he was, then I'd be more inclined to agree that a resignation would be decent.

Whoa whoa whoa. Yes he was. Of course he was. He just wasn't using it as strongly as he was using all of the other arguments. It wasn't the PRINCIPLE thing he was trying to convince Brits of... though he knows full well that is what Bush is mainly using and so his backing of such garbage to help sell snake-oil to Americans doesn't make me too happy with him.

Actually, you may not know this but after the London bombings Bush used the same argument again, except now saying that Iraq has made the US safer so we don't have to face what happened in London. Guess Bush has included you guys as part of the front line now.

Clearly whether or not it would be good for Britain to have Blair resign is a matter of opinion.

So is whether a decent leader would resign after all these failures. My second post in this thread had that explicitly stated before I said why I thought if he was a decent leader he'd step down. I didn't expect anyone had to agree with me at all.


holmes
"...what a fool believes he sees, no wise man has the power to reason away.."(D. Bros)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 295 by Modulous, posted 07-12-2005 6:01 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 303 by Modulous, posted 07-13-2005 10:27 AM Silent H has responded

  
Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6702
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.8


Message 297 of 313 (223490)
07-12-2005 8:15 PM
Reply to: Message 291 by CanadianSteve
07-12-2005 4:00 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
quote:
Mr. Cook's erudite and timely study has many implications, including these:

* The current understanding of jihad is more extreme than at any prior time in Islamic history.
* This extremism suggests that the Muslim world is going through a phase, one that must be endured and overcome, comparable to analogously horrid periods in Germany, Russia, and China.
* Jihad having evolved steadily until now, doubtless will continue to do so in the future.
* The excessive form of jihad currently practiced by Al-Qaeda and others could, Mr. Cook semi-predicts, lead to its "decisive rejection" by a majority of Muslims. Jihad then could turn into a non-violent concept.


I see nothing fundamentally wrong with these three conclusions, although I have some doubts about the fourth.

But the quoted passage from Cook also suggests another implication. As I read Cook's passage, I notice that he seems to draw a picture of jihad as an expression of resistance against invasion, conquest, and imperialism. This is consistent with what was said at the beginning of this thread concerning the invasion of Iraq. By being seen as another example of Western imperialism, the invasion of Iraq further strengthens the Islamic extremists and hardens public opinion against the US.

This is a poll taken by the Pew Research Center about a year ago. It indicates widespread skepticism concerning the US invasion of Iraq in the Arab world, as well as significant support of Osama bin Laden. A poll taken by Zogby also links anger at the US with the invasion of Iraq. I couldn't find anything more recent -- here's a VOA report on a more recent poll, although I couldn't find more details on Pew's website.

Interestingly, the Center for Strategic and International Studies reports on a poll taken by Terror Free Tomorrow that shows that public opinion in Indonesia has improved in the aftermath of US aid in response to the tsunami last January. So it appears that a genuinely helpful hand really can influence people; however the CSIS warns

Whether [this good will] will be sustained will depend, in large part, on the new Asia team's ability to convince Southeast Asians that Washington believes the region to be important in its own right and not just as a "second front" in the war on terrorism.

I think that all of this has implications on how we should deal with the Islamicists. Overt military action is counter-productive, while aid that truly helps the needy can have a great positive effect.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 291 by CanadianSteve, posted 07-12-2005 4:00 PM CanadianSteve has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 298 by CanadianSteve, posted 07-12-2005 8:35 PM Chiroptera has responded

CanadianSteve
Member (Idle past 4670 days)
Posts: 756
From: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Joined: 06-06-2005


Message 298 of 313 (223497)
07-12-2005 8:35 PM
Reply to: Message 297 by Chiroptera
07-12-2005 8:15 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
Cook says, in fact, as do most other islamic and non islamic scholars that:
'"Throughout history and at present... the term (Jihad) primarily means "warfare with spiritual significance."' That is war, plain and simple.

As for iraq, the people are on side with the Americans. Who is killing them? The Jihadis. Why are the Jihadis killing them? Because they failed to scare off the Americans, so hope, instead, to intimidate iraqis from the democratic course they've chosen. Who are the Jihadis? Mainly Sunni foreigners, the majority of Iraqis being Shias and Kurds.

Arabs elsewhere may support bin Laden, but iraqis do not. They despise him, other than the minority Sunni iraqis, and amny of them are Hussein loyalists, p'd off that they lost their privileges as the ruling class when he was pushed from power.

bin Laden correctly noted, right after 9/11, that people favour "the strong horse." Of course, he figured that he had positioned himself as that, and would gain the respect and support of Muslims. He did, too, for a little while. But when the taliban quickly fell, and the US appeared to be the strong horse, his support dwindled a bit. After Iraq, it is on a downward trend. When iraqi democracy takes root, it will be over for him and the rest of the Islamists. No, they won't be wiped out. Rather, their Islamist ideology will have begun its inevitable defeat to democracy. And that is precisely why jihadis from around the world have poured into iraq: it is their last stand, and they know it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 297 by Chiroptera, posted 07-12-2005 8:15 PM Chiroptera has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 299 by Chiroptera, posted 07-12-2005 10:07 PM CanadianSteve has responded

Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6702
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.8


Message 299 of 313 (223521)
07-12-2005 10:07 PM
Reply to: Message 298 by CanadianSteve
07-12-2005 8:35 PM


Re: Naw..its not Islamic religious law...
quote:
Cook says, in fact, as do most other islamic and non islamic scholars that:
'"Throughout history and at present... the term (Jihad) primarily means "warfare with spiritual significance."' That is war, plain and simple.

The definition of the word jihad has no relevance to anything in my post, nor to any of my other posts. I can't figure out whether you are trying to change the subject or whether you have a problem with logic.

-

quote:
As for iraq, the people are on side with the Americans.

That is very different from any I have ever read on Iraq. About a year ago, Christian Parenti wrote an article detailing anti-American sentiment among Iraqis. In an article published just before the Iraqi elections in January, David Enders also that the American occupation was unpopular. Sami Ramadani has recently written:

It was a reflection of Iraqi popular hatred of the occupation that 82 of the national assembly's 275 members signed a petition calling for a speedy withdrawal [of foreign troops], after the prime minister, Ibrahim al-Jaafari, appeared to be breaking his election promise to insist on a scheduled pullout....When it became clear that the poorest areas of Baghdad and the south were even more hostile to the occupation than the so-called Sunni towns - answering the Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr's call to arms - Bush and Blair tried to defeat the resistance piecemeal, under the guise of fighting foreign terrorists....Indeed, Iraqis habitually blame the occupation for all acts of terrorism, not what is fondly referred to as al-muqawama al-sharifa (the honourable resistance)

And Frank Brodhead has written:

All indications are that a great majority of the people of Iraq – and substantial parts of the “governing” political parties – want to find a negotiated settlement that includes the speedy withdrawal of the US occupation forces.

The occupation is simply not popular in Iraq. But perhaps you have more accurate information than I?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 298 by CanadianSteve, posted 07-12-2005 8:35 PM CanadianSteve has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 301 by CanadianSteve, posted 07-13-2005 1:20 AM Chiroptera has responded
 Message 302 by CanadianSteve, posted 07-13-2005 1:27 AM Chiroptera has not yet responded

Dead Parrot
Member (Idle past 1543 days)
Posts: 151
From: Wellington, NZ
Joined: 04-13-2005


Message 300 of 313 (223530)
07-12-2005 11:39 PM


Quick Update...
Before the thread dies of old age, an update from the BBC:

Detectives now believe the London bombings were carried out by four British-born men in what were possibly the country's first suicide attacks.

Security sources said it was likely at least three of the men, said to be of Pakistani descent, are dead, after belongings were found at the scenes.

The details emerged as explosives were found in Leeds and Luton after a series of raids. One man has been arrested.
-------------
More at the article. I guess we've got to nuke West Yorkshire now: Shame, there are some nice pubs around there.


  
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