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Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

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  • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

    Originally posted by SPIN CONTROL View Post
    I would say the early morning hours of 9/11/01 was a ticking time bomb and not some "fanciful creation of Hollywood".

    Do you know what kind of factors would have to line up where torturing an individual is the only conceivable way to stop that event from occurring?

    And I assume you would then be fine with authorizing torture of American citizens to prevent another Oklahoma City?

    Comment


    • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

      Originally posted by ScottM View Post
      We don't have a "moral position". If we had a "moral position", whatever the hell that is, we'd probably stop sending drones into Pakistan and wiping out civilians, including children and women, along with the Taliban and al-Qaeda. Instead we'd send hit squads for more precise kills, or at least farm that work out. Moreover, if the tactics and processes complained of now were approved of previously, why should they be reviewed to placate later political agendas? I'd hate to think that the new rendition policy of the O-man, as well as bringing a cross-agency team of interrogators under the purview of the NSC would be second guessed for political reasons by another President. God forbid the O-man have to give sworn testimony about why he ordered certain actions to protect the nation.

      Edit: I think my biggest concern is that operatives operating under a discrete set of rules may be subject to later prosecution or censure for following those rules if the political winds change. I have no problems prosecuting those who violate the law or the rules, as has been done, but I am more concerned about dragging "innocent" personnel into a politically motivated process.
      Note the "moral position" in quotation marks, I'm not buying into the idea that our actions have to be pure as driven snow. However, we imho, do more damage to our position in the world by authorizing state sanctioned torture in secret cells all over the world than we do with battlefield orders. No one has suggested prosecuting the Bush Administration for its actions in Pakistan save maybe some far left hippies or European Social Democrats. Battlefield actions have always, rightly, been subject to a different level of scrutiny. Torture is too far removed from the tactical concerns of war to be given that deference. I think both Bush and Obama weighed or are currently weighing the poor actions are "allies" in Pakistan presented us with and went with the path of least resistance. Not approving state sanctioned torture=/=fighting Islamic radicalism with flowers and speeches.

      Yes thats the greatest cause for apprehension, the Banana Republic like investigation of all the administration's past actions. But you seem to be approving a blank check to do whatever is necessary or whatever a President authorizes as necessary to protect the nation. There are certain things that should be questioned and reviewed no matter whether the previous administration believed they were operating to secure national security. Japanese Internment and the Roosevelt administration is example numero uno.

      And I'm in agreement with you on low level operatives. If they stayed with a reasonable distance of the guidelines handed down I know following orders didn't wash at Nuremburg, but were not at that level yet.

      Comment


      • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

        Originally posted by Rover View Post
        Not a big fan of investigating previous administrations in general, but I think I draw the line at threatening people's families no matter how dispicable the prisoner is.
        If some terrorist scumbag talks because he thinks we are going to wipe out his entire family, I am all for it.

        Fighting the good fight

        Comment


        • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

          If you're going to torture a suspect by threatening to murder his family, why stop there? Why not actually murder his family? Seriously -- if averting disaster is so important that we should relax our moral standards, why not?
          Cornell University
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          • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

            Originally posted by Kepler View Post
            If you're going to torture a suspect by threatening to murder his family, why stop there? Why not actually murder his family? Seriously -- if averting disaster is so important that we should relax our moral standards, why not?
            Compare and contrast this to the Pacific Theater in WWII vis a vis treatment of POW's (or lack thereof) by both sides.

            Since our guys don't seem to come back when they get captured by the Taliban, to expect a "higher standard" by our guys in the field seems to be a bit farfetched.
            CCT '77 & '78
            4 kids
            5 grandsons (BCA 7/09, CJA 5/14, JDL 8/14, JFL 6/16, PJL 7/18)
            1 granddaughter (EML 4/18)

            ”Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”
            - Benjamin Franklin

            Banned from the St. Lawrence University Facebook page - March 2016 (But I got better).

            I want to live forever. So far, so good.

            Comment


            • Originally posted by joecct View Post
              ....to expect a "higher standard" by our guys in the field seems to be a bit farfetched.
              What's next, rape and pillage? Oh, only if they do it first? Right, gotcha.

              Comment


              • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                Originally posted by Slap Shot View Post
                What's next, rape and pillage? Oh, only if they do it first? Right, gotcha.
                Mongol General: Hao! Dai ye! We won again! This is good, but what is best in life?
                Mongol: The open steppe, fleet horse, falcons at your wrist, and the wind in your hair.
                Mongol General: Wrong! Conan! What is best in life?
                Conan: To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.
                Mongol General: That is good! That is good.
                CCT '77 & '78
                4 kids
                5 grandsons (BCA 7/09, CJA 5/14, JDL 8/14, JFL 6/16, PJL 7/18)
                1 granddaughter (EML 4/18)

                ”Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”
                - Benjamin Franklin

                Banned from the St. Lawrence University Facebook page - March 2016 (But I got better).

                I want to live forever. So far, so good.

                Comment


                • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                  Originally posted by joecct View Post
                  Compare and contrast this to the Pacific Theater
                  So every atrocity raises the high water mark and nothing below should subsequently count?

                  The argument put forward by the Cheney apologists, repeatedly, is that both torture and a presumption of guilt -- both direct dismissals of what separates us from our enemies -- are acceptable under these circumstances, since they are supposedly a greater existential threat than any we have ever faced.

                  I think that's ridiculous on its face, but understanding that many on the other side are trying to defend it, the question then is a matter of where you draw the line. Boil a baby alive to avert a 24 fantasy? Why not? Not to mention the terrorists and Islamic radicals certainly consider themselves to be under an existential threat, so what they do is justified under the same code.

                  Plato blew this argument out of the water in his debate between Socrates and Thrasymachus in the beginning of Republic 2500 years ago (just after Athens had gone through a far worse existential crisis, to boot). Ethics is not a rheostat.
                  Last edited by Kepler; 08-25-2009, 08:30 PM.
                  Cornell University
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                  • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                    Originally posted by SPIN CONTROL View Post
                    If some terrorist scumbag talks because he thinks we are going to wipe out his entire family, I am all for it.

                    And if he's just some poor goat-herder handed over to US custody for a bounty?
                    What kind of cheese are you planning to put on top?

                    Comment


                    • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                      Originally posted by SPIN CONTROL View Post
                      I would say the early morning hours of 9/11/01 was a ticking time bomb and not some "fanciful creation of Hollywood".

                      Too bad all this stuff happened years after that day.
                      What kind of cheese are you planning to put on top?

                      Comment


                      • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                        Originally posted by Kepler View Post
                        So every atrocity raises the high water mark and nothing below should subsequently count?

                        The argument put forward by the Cheney apologists, repeatedly, is that both torture and a presumption of guilt -- both direct dismissals of what separates us from our enemies -- are acceptable under these circumstances, since they are supposedly a greater existential threat than any we have ever faced.

                        I think that's ridiculous on its face, but understanding that many on the other side are trying to defend it, the question then is a matter of where you draw the line. Boil a baby alive to avert a 24 fantasy? Why not? Not to mention the terrorists and Islamic radicals certainly consider themselves to be under an existential threat, so what they do is justified under the same code.

                        Plato blew this argument out of the water in his debate between Socrates and Thrasymachus in the beginning of Republic 2500 years ago (just after Athens had gone through a far worse existential crisis, to boot). Ethics is not a rheostat.
                        Ah your Ivy education trumps my Tech ed. Missed that class, if it was even offered.

                        But war is not a moral act. If the enemy is trying to kill me or my family, I am not going to be nice.

                        Look, I've never worn the suit, but I wonder if once the bullets start flying, doesn't survival becomes #1 and you to anything to survive?? That is at the individual level. What happens at the nation-state level? How far does a nation-state go to ensure its survival? At some point do you toss the ethical handbook and go for survival?? In other words, does the end justifies the means when survivial is at stake????

                        Lots of questions and probably a doctoral thesis or two in there for somebody who is interested. And it can't be answered in a 30 second sound bite.
                        CCT '77 & '78
                        4 kids
                        5 grandsons (BCA 7/09, CJA 5/14, JDL 8/14, JFL 6/16, PJL 7/18)
                        1 granddaughter (EML 4/18)

                        ”Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”
                        - Benjamin Franklin

                        Banned from the St. Lawrence University Facebook page - March 2016 (But I got better).

                        I want to live forever. So far, so good.

                        Comment


                        • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                          Originally posted by BoomGoestheDynamite View Post
                          For the record, I wouldn't prosecute operatives unless they really really went nutty on prisoners beyond any approved directive.

                          .
                          For both you and ScottM. These acts did go beyond what was approved. The CIA admits this.
                          What kind of cheese are you planning to put on top?

                          Comment


                          • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                            Originally posted by ScottM View Post
                            A guy I went to school with was on that PanAm flight, so I have no problems letting the Scots know what I think of their actions.
                            I totally understand the feelings.

                            Even so, its safe to say the vast majority of Scots had little say in the matter. Boycotting IMO is an inappropriate response...as would be people holding me in some way responsible for US foriegn policy on my next trip overseas.
                            Go Gophers!

                            Comment


                            • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                              Originally posted by joecct View Post
                              But war is not a moral act. If the enemy is trying to kill me or my family, I am not going to be nice.

                              Look, I've never worn the suit, but I wonder if once the bullets start flying, doesn't survival becomes #1 and you to anything to survive?? That is at the individual level. What happens at the nation-state level? How far does a nation-state go to ensure its survival? At some point do you toss the ethical handbook and go for survival?? In other words, does the end justifies the means when survivial is at stake????

                              Lots of questions and probably a doctoral thesis or two in there for somebody who is interested. And it can't be answered in a 30 second sound bite.
                              That's why you're an excellent man to have a discussion about these things with. Too many just go for the quick zinger that reinforces their black-and-white viewpoint (to say nothing of the Ignorables who rely on juvenile ad hom).

                              The last 400 years of the development of international law have been wrestling with questions of what moral responsibilities carry over into war. The gist is that both individuals and states have rights of self-preservation, but those rights can't be used to justify just anything, and the simple assertion that the right is in play isn't enough -- you have to meet some standards. Without some sort of overarching framework to guide our actions there's really nothing to distinguish any group of us from any other, and at that point is simply degenerates into vae victis. That is why governments, laws, moral codes and religions were invented in the first place.

                              Any anyway, it was only the SUNY Ithaca Ivy...
                              Cornell University
                              National Champion 1967, 1970
                              ECAC Champion 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1973, 1980, 1986, 1996, 1997, 2003, 2005, 2010
                              Ivy League Champion 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1977, 1978, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1996, 1997, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2012, 2014, 2018, 2019, 2020

                              Comment


                              • Re: Global War on Terror III: Dick Cheney's Hague ICC Vacation

                                Originally posted by Kepler View Post
                                The last 400 years of the development of international law have been wrestling with questions of what moral responsibilities carry over into war. The gist is that both individuals and states have rights of self-preservation, but those rights can't be used to justify just anything, and the simple assertion that the right is in play isn't enough -- you have to meet some standards. Without some sort of overarching framework to guide our actions there's really nothing to distinguish any group of us from any other, and at that point is simply degenerates into vae victis. That is why governments, laws, moral codes and religions were invented in the first place.
                                But that international law also says that if the other side doesn't play by the rules you are no longer held to the same standard.

                                Obviously there is a line that cannot be crossed, but that line is different for everyone. The biggest problem you get into is when you try to fight a war like a police action. When you tie the hands of the military with unnecessary rules of engagement and limit its ability to collect intel all you are doing is dragging out the conflict and eventually causing more death.

                                Out military and intel operations are by no means perfect, but they are the best in the world at what they do and 99.9% of the time they do it completely within legal means. The best part is on the occassions where they do go over the line the military puts its own on trial and isn't afraid to send them to prision.
                                "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." - Frederic Bastiat

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