Amsterdam Riots: Deja Vu All Over Again

Old Nov 29th, 2007, 07:47 AM
  #21  
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I was thinking of WWII or the Afghanistan war - WWII drew only a few conscienous religious protestors but no wide scale protests a la Viet Nam or the current 65% who are not in favor of this war (which has seen surprisingly small protest movements on the street)

Those wars practically everyone was in favor of - a unaninimity that inspired troops perhaps

so 'protests' were meant to say wide spread, not isolated which yes you will always have
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Old Nov 29th, 2007, 09:51 AM
  #22  
 
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Fair enough, I just don't think the average person really thinks through their opposition or support for most wars. For example, the question of whether Iraq was "worth fighting" is one that I feel the average person could/should have answered for themselves at the outset, and a majority (even if not a huge one) in the US felt that it was, at least they seemed to say this when they re-elected W. And sure, I know many feel misled, but how many can honestly say that they would have changed their view had the "whole truth" been out there? Could even half of the 65% even name a single inaccuracy and articulate why knowing what they know now would have changed their views?

It is one thing to be opposed to a war because it isn't the "right thing" and quite another to oppose it because it is perceived as not going well, which seems to be the case here. Since we can't disentangle the root cause of the 65% opposition, how can we then use that opposition as proof that the war was an unjust one?

Or let us turn it the other way around. What about US inaction during the early part of WWI? Or the way most democracies stood by and watched Rwanda and Sudan and Somalia and the Balkans disintegrate into lawlessness and ethnic violence? Why is the Korean War not considered the "wrong war" that Vietnam seems to be? Is it because we won? Is it because North Korea ended up ruled by a nut? Neither answer has any bearing on whether the war was the "right war" in the first place.

Again, not saying that intervention is required or just in any or all of these cases, but to judge the morality/acceptability of Iraq based upon opinion polls? Most American's are selfish and will support a war for a while, provided it meets our ends and we stand a chance to win. To claim that the opinion poll serves as a moral compass would require both that the opinions did not change based upon the expected outcome of the war, as well as some evidence that public pressure was similarly intense for a just war. I don't see a lot of evidence in either direction.
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Old Nov 29th, 2007, 01:05 PM
  #23  
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<Why is the Korean War not considered the "wrong war" that Vietnam seems to be? Is it because we won?>

My history says that U.S. did not win the Korean War - was a stalemate and that's why there are two Koreas - in fact an armistice was not signed i believe for years and maybe still hasn't.

But it's not that folks feel this is an unjust war but that they feel it is a worth NOT worth fighting at this point.

Yes if it would have been easy and we would have been welcomed with flowers as saviors then even the anti-war groups would be happy

WWII went quite poorly for the first few years i believe but the public never wavered but perhaps even strengthen their resolve (same in Britain) because they thought they was a just cause and also because the U.S. had been attacked (911 no parallel because those who attacked us had absolutely no role in Iraq though Bushies used that shamelessly IMO to whip up fervor for war)

That's all my point - when an overwhelming % country feels a war is not worth continuing then it's over for all practical purposes.
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Old Nov 30th, 2007, 07:31 AM
  #24  
 
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Big difference between WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam war on one hand, and Iraq on the other.

In the first three, either the US or one of its allies was invaded or internal terrorist/revolutionary groups were given aid by another power; i.e., Japan/Germany; North Korea; North Vietnam.

In the current Irag War (or struggle, or insurgency, or intervention, or whatever it is), the US and its allies invaded another country without sufficient justification--bogus weapons of mass destruction do not count. Those aluminum tubes they found afterwards were just aluminum tubes.
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Old Nov 30th, 2007, 08:10 AM
  #25  
 
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"Big difference between WWII, the Korean War, and the Vietnam war on one hand, and Iraq on the other."

I never claimed they were the same. What I said was that, unless there is evidence that public opinion pressured the US into action in a war that history judges as 'right' (my example was WWone, not two), then why should we believe that public opinion can be used to accurately measure whether a war is 'wrong'?

One has a couple of options: to either oppose war categorically, or to establish criteria for themselves as to what makes one war justified over another. You suggest that being attacked (or having an ally attacked) might be that criteria - fine. But, clearly the majority of Americans that supported the Iraq War at the outset do not share that criteria, or they would have opposed the war. So, what is the criteria they used? What has changed in terms of the parameters set out at the beginning by those who once supported, but now oppose the war? My contention is that it is because the war is not going according to plan, not some assessment that what was once thought 'right' is now 'wrong.'

I'm not trying to defend the war or anything like that, just calling into question the wisdom of appointing 'the mob' arbiters of right and wrong. Their track record just isn't that good, even with regards to this conflict.

And frankly, all these people coming out of the woodwork now, after the fight has already started, kind of seems chicken-s**t to me. Not in the sense that "folks aren't supporting the military", but in the fact that the American people supported entering the conflict. We re-elected the president who started it. But, now, when things start to look a bit bleak, everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon and talk about how it was "wrong". No one wants to admit (or even defend their complicity. Instead, everyone wants to pretend that they are just hapless pawns occupying some moral high ground. But morality after the fact isn't really morality at all, now is it?
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Old Nov 30th, 2007, 10:45 AM
  #26  
 
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Nothing wrong with changing your mind when you get new information that makes your original decision wrong.
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