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ParkingPlaces



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Our military is trying to find and stop those that would do harm to us.  War is a messy process.  But, our military is not killing to make a statement, it is killing to accomplish a goal.  That is the difference between our military and the two guys in Boston setting pressure cooker bombs.

First of all, welcome LVMark. We hope to hear more from you, even if I am going to disagree with you a bit.

The goal we have, of stopping terrorism, makes all the sense in the world. I can't possibly dispute trying to bring such extremists to their knees.

The problem is that the military is not always the best way to fight such problems. Right now, we have a bad habit of killing innocents alongside those that we think are guilty. We killed over 60 schoolkids in one strike a few years ago. We killed four in a strike earlier this week. We kill innocent adults on a regular basis too. And those that we kill because we wanted to may or may not have been guilty of being al qaida or taliban. So it is a very incomplete process that carries with it no guarantees of success.

And to add to that tactical problem, we have the one where, as we kill bad guy A, we create bad guys B, C, D, and E because we killed their wives or friends or children collaterally. In other words, if we are creating more enemies than we kill, then we are creating and endless loop of death and frustration.

Also, one of the big reasons we got attacked on 9/11 isn't that America is full of infidels, but rather that we chose to continue maintaining a military presence in the middle east, in countries like Yemen and Sadia Arabia and Kuwait, something that many muslims consider a travesty. Bin Laden, for instance. Acts like that by the US confirm in their minds that we are bullies, and that we need to be trifled with. Americans would not tolerate Kenya forcing its way into Kansas and Texas to set up bases to protect their wheat supplies. Why do we expect others to roll over and play nice just because it is us doing it over oil?

When we rolled into Iraq, one of the first things we did after the majority of the fighting was over was to hand the contract for providing satellite TV services to all of Iraq, a monopolistic contract, to ATT, an American company with no satellite TV experience. Iraqis were not allowed to compete. There was no open marketplace. And we made the new iraqi legislature mandate that all farmers would have to plant crops using only Monsanto GM seeds, which are sterile and cannot be harvested for replanting. Which meant that the farmers could set aside part of their crop for the next years planting. Such insensitivity, when combined with Abu Graib and other more obvious atrocities do not a good neighbor make, and for us to be either surprised or offended by those who disagree with our heavy handed policies is naïve.

The bomber brothers of Boston said (or at least the survivor has said) that they killed because they though the muslim religion was being falsely accused of being violent. Apparently there is no word for "irony" in that religion. But for us to make fun of their logic while we do our best to bomb our way to friendship indicates that we are just as naïve. Being bigger doesn't make us righter.

(Dante, you posted while I was writing this and managed to say the same thing in far fewer words. But I'll post this anyway to help drive our point home.)
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