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MJ - country list(17 posts)

MJ - country listBikeViking
Mar 16, 2002 6:59 AM
Georgia--we were invited there to get al-Qaeda out of Pankisi Gorge. What's the problem?

Phillipines--again, we were invited...so what?

Sudan-Cliton taking heat from himself during Monicagate...have to ask him about that. It was not a valid target.

Afghanistan x 2--1st time...gave them arms to resist ad defeat the Soviets, why is that bad. We all could have engaged afterward. 2nd time. FULL CONSULTATION with allies...what problem exists here?

Panama...the Canal (vital US national interest) must be kept open and Noriega was not a stable guy.

Grenada...Soviets helping build an airfield there...preventive medicine.

Vietnam..mistake in hindssight...thought it would stem Communism worldwide...not really that important in hindsight

Palestine (not directly but the US is complicit..THey get a $hitload of our money and have done nothing but kill civillians, for the most part. How are we complicit? Supporting a democratically-elected ally in Israel who only aim to kill combatants? (civilians have died, but tell me of warfare that can spare them)
re: MJ - country listMJ
Mar 18, 2002 1:33 AM
being invited doesn;t make it ok

diplomacy from late 1980's would have prevented the need to go in either time - 1998 or 2001

was Noriega really a threat - or did he just stuff the CIA their coke money? we can't prop up dictators indefintely then play the righteous card when they no lnger serve our purpose

Israel - democratic? - tell it to the Palestinians - it's a parallel to pre-Civil War America - Israel has an army with tanks and jets and attack helicopters - if you were Palestinian you'd use whatever means you have too

oh and I forgot about Latin America

Chile
Columbia
El Salvador
Guatemala
Honduras

in all - military actions rather than diplomacy
agreedweiwentg
Mar 19, 2002 4:56 AM
also East Timor. the Indonesians invaded with the complicity of the government at the time.
re: MJ - country listBikeViking
Mar 18, 2002 6:00 AM
There is nothing I can say that will change your mind about the US. It is my opinion you perceive us as the world protagonist of evil who won't share its wealth with the poor nations of the world. Nothing could be farther from the truth, but I cannot persuade you otherwise. Most importantly I KNOW you won't persuade me otherwise.

Therefore, as always, we'll have to agree to disagree
re: MJ - country listMJ
Mar 19, 2002 5:20 AM
the US is not the protagonist of evil - it is a unilateral cowboy seeking to globally export capitalism and culture and then not take any further interest in the world - it then retreats into pristine small minded Norman Rockwell suburbs - you can't have it both ways - you either participate take responsibility and lead from the front or you don't...

the news in the US is infotainment - yes even CNN - it's not surprising that more people aren't aware of the wider world - you've dropped everything I've raised in the country list - while we may agree to disagree - the missing civilians in Central America (and elsewhere) would like the same opportuntiy

do you question anything that your spoon fed by the US government (I realise thaht you work for them) - but you are absolutely towing the standard line on everything

from your point of view - the world is a great place full of opportuntiy - just pull yourself up by the boot straps and take advantage - the US is doing everythign it should and there are no global concerns which would benefit from US input/resources

when you were in Turkey (presumably Incirlik SW Turkey - a war zone) did you actually speak to the Kurds or any other locals - did you ever leave your US bubble? - ever talk politics with somebody from hte third world?

the funny thing is that I know I won't be able to convince you of anything - regardless of how many examples or points I raise - sometimes no matter how much you learn it's scary to think that you may have made some grave errors and grand assumptions along the way
re: Wait a second...jrm
Mar 18, 2002 2:59 PM
Isreal claimed palistine holey land there own when the state of isreal was established by the UN. The palistinies where there FIRST.

We subsidize some 30 to 40 cents of every USD on Isreal economy, and defense that kills those civilians your speaking of. Isreal state's they're acts of violence towards palistine are in retaliation. But this logic allows them to claim victim and then escalate the situation with an unequally larger offensive. It also doenst hurt to have the jewish media inyour back pocket to spin the facts and establish unfavorable stereotypes of middle easterners to form positive public policy.

Sooner or later, isreal is going to get the shit knocked outta um. Then what. its not the middle east itself. it had survived as a region far before we propped up a sign that said isreal. The problem is isreal. of the nations that may have biological, nuclear or chemical none have a delivery system that puts europe or N. america in danger. IR experts have said that if these nations choose to use these weapons, cahnces are theyll hit isreal.
re: Wait a second...BikeViking
Mar 18, 2002 7:44 PM
Where was this claim to "Palestine" in 1964 when the PLO was born? Oh yeah! The land in question was in ARAB hands. How come the Palestinians didn't launch an Intifada against the Jordanians to reclaim most of their land? Is Palestinian a language? No! The Palestinians need to stop killing Israeli civilians and perhaps the will live longer. THey must love their children more than they hate the Jews.

In all fairness, the Israelis need to to get OUT of those settlements and be a little more judicious in responding to Palestinian terrorist attacks. F-16's aren't quite the precision weapon for that type of urban combat.
re: its Not just the palestines..jrm
Mar 20, 2002 1:24 PM
That hate the jews. And if the land was in arab hands before the jews barged in and took it then thats just more justification.

Religion, nataionalism, and a deeply held belief system carry more weight then children.
re: MJ - country listBikeViking
Mar 19, 2002 12:51 PM
the US is not the protagonist of evil - it is a unilateral cowboy seeking to globally export capitalism and culture and then not take any further interest in the world - it then retreats into pristine small minded Norman Rockwell suburbs - you can't have it both ways - you either participate take responsibility and lead from the front or you don't...

---- Your anecdotes never match up with fact. I have given plenty of examples of how we are engaged, but you just don't think they are good enough. Capitalism is a tough system and some people don't make it. Far better that a Marxist "utopia" I gave specific answers to your country list and, to you, it didn't matter that we are INVITED in some contries, ENGAGED in trying to rid teh world of terrorists, but it didn't mattter

the news in the US is infotainment - yes even CNN - it's not surprising that more people aren't aware of the wider world - you've dropped everything I've raised in the country list - while we may agree to disagree - the missing civilians in Central America (and elsewhere) would like the same opportuntiy

---- You asked about specific countries and I gave specific answers about what I knew. You didn't like it that we are actually GUESTS in some of the countries, acting in a COMMON interest of killing terrorists. I don't understand your point on what I "dropped" Yeah we didn't do well in a few countries, but we supported them against Communism, which was a plague on the planet. Sometimes tough choices have to be made in a worse/MUCH worse situation. It's easy to have the benefit of historical hindsight, it ain't so easy when you have to DO something.

do you question anything that your spoon fed by the US government (I realise thaht you work for them) - but you are absolutely towing the standard line on everything

---- COntrary to your belief, I have a lot of problem with them. They tax too much of my money. They spend my money on some REALLY stupid stuff. They sometimes try to infringe on my RIGHT to keep and bear arms. They seem to think they know what's better for me that I do. It is too large and bureacratic. But even at its worst, it is still better tahn any other system on the planet.

from your point of view - the world is a great place full of opportuntiy - just pull yourself up by the boot straps and take advantage - the US is doing everythign it should and there are no global concerns which would benefit from US input/resources

---- We input enough. You cannot save people if they do not what to be saved. So many nations are a shambles, but when given a chance to actually ELECT someone, they can't even get that right. I don't like spedning money with no results.

when you were in Turkey (presumably Incirlik SW Turkey - a war zone) did you actually speak to the Kurds or any other locals - did you ever leave your US bubble? - ever talk politics with somebody from hte third world?

--- It is not a war zone...ever been there? We weren't allowed to venture too far from base so we didn't get a lot of exposure to the average Turkish civilian. That being said, they lawfully ELECTED their government. It is their choice. They are a secular Muslim country (the only one in the world) and they do well for themselves. They made a CHOICE!

the funny thing is that I know I won't be able to convince you of anything - regardless of how many examples or points I raise - sometimes no matter how much you learn it's scary to think that you may have made some grave errors and grand assumptions along the way.

---- I ge the perception that you MAY have some Socialist leanings (am I correct? Please answer). If that is so, that is where our differences are. I believe the INDIVIDUAL need to take responsibility for themselves and not look to Mommy Government to supply all of their lifes needs. Most European countries are learning they cannot afford all of the benefits promised to their population. T
read thisMJ
Mar 21, 2002 1:20 AM
http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,671089,00.html

Widow blames US officials for Guatemala dirty war death

Duncan Campbell in Los Angeles
Thursday March 21, 2002
The Guardian

The American widow of a Guatemalan leftwing leader who was tortured and killed by a CIA "asset" 10 years ago is seeking the right to sue the then secretary of state Warren Christopher and two national officials for his death.
Jennifer Harbury's application to bring a case against former senior US officials, which reached the supreme court this week, could throw light on the role of the US intelligence services in the "dirty wars" fought by death squads in Central America in the past 30 years.

Ms Harbury, herself a lawyer, went to the supreme court to argue that she has the right to bring a civil action against named government officials, including Mr Christopher, the former national security adviser Anthony Lake, and the former ambassador to Guatemala Marilyn McAfee.

Efrain Bamaca-Velasquez was kidnapped and held by members of the Guatemalan armed forces in March 1992. At first the army told Ms Harbury that her husband had committed suicide, but the grave in which she was told he was buried did not contain his body.

She had also asked US officials for information and for help in tracing her husband. She was told that the US had no information about him.

Three years later, after inquiries by the Democratic senator Robert Torricelli, classified documents were released showing that Bamaca-Velasquez had been killed on the orders of an officer who was described as an "asset" of the CIA: someone who was not employed by the agency but assisted it.

The US knew at the time of her husband's kidnapping who had carried it out but, Ms Harbury says, it chose to tell her that it had no information.

The government's lawyers argue that the case should not proceed, on the grounds that government officials are entitled to give misleading information.

"There are lots of different situations when the government has legitimate reasons to give out false information," the solicitor general, Theodore Olson, told the supreme court this week.

Ms Harbury argued that if she had known that her husband was being held by people connected to the CIA she could have sought a legal injunction to prevent the CIA "requesting and paying for continued information being extracted by torture of a living prisoner".

Ms Harbury, the author of Searching for Evarado (a leftwing guerrilla commander) has held two hunger strikes in Guatemala City and one outside the White House, to draw attention to the case.
re: MJ - country listMJ
Mar 21, 2002 1:34 AM
nobody's advocating a Marxist utopia - just responsible capitalism

you dropped everything from the country list (TKO) - and the fact that because we are invited still doesn't make it right - if you are invited to commit a crime - does that make it right? - once again one man's freedom fighter is another's terrorist - maybe teh US should think a bit more about the countries where it gets involved

who was Communism such a threat to in Chile or anywhere else in Latin America? what about in Cuba? - you are the one living in the cold war - everyone else moved on a while ago

your view of government and the world is based on me, me, me - and the selfish American notion of unrestrained entitlement without any thought of consequences or oter people - me, me, me gets a bit old - statistics say your home arsenal will be used against you or by you against people that you know (usually your family)

how are third world countries with no system of democracy, no economy and no asset expoected to make the leap to western styles of government and economy - it's unrealistic without aid programmes - but if that helps your concience - that if those (African/whoever) people can't get it together (as defined by me from my US perspective) we just won't help them - you keep looking at the failures and justifying burying your head in the sand while failing to acknowledge any successes...

why weren't you allowed to go to far from the base? - because it's a war zone - if you don't think so ask the Kurdish refugees from SE Turkey who are under the heel of the government - it's not very democratic to them

no I'm not a socialist - but I do belivee in responsible capitalism and not wrapping everything I view in the world in assessing what I get first (me, me, me from above)- where I may do taht personally I do think that governments have a responsibility to rise above that selfishness and make adequate (reasonable) provisions for those who can;t take part in the wealth of the west

the frontier is settled - there is no Americn west - the individual has no control over anything - I can't believe that you have been lulled (lied to) into believing any of that tripe - it's not like your a big corporate executive or something and yet you constantly take 'their side'
here's what I'm talking aboutMJ
Mar 21, 2002 7:05 AM
BV - we should have more wars over who's giving the most - some useful statistics for both sides of the argument.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/debt/Story/0,2763,671171,00.html

War of pledges gives hope to world's poor

Bush flies in to UN debate on fighting poverty

Julian Borger in Washington and Charlotte Denny
Thursday March 21, 2002
The Guardian

George Bush will arrive in Monterrey, Mexico, tonight for this week's United Nations summit on tackling global poverty in an unusual position for a Republican president - locked in an argument with his European allies about whose plans to boost aid spending are the most generous.
Just days before the summit, Mr Bush announced a $5bn (£3.6bn) package of help for the poorest countries spread over three years, while in Europe, finance ministers overcame opposition from the cash-strapped German government and pledged an increase in European aid of $7bn a year by 2006.

With Mr Bush due to give a keynote speech to the conference tomorrow, the White House is now saying that the American aid package will be double the size of the original announcement. It marks a major shift for an administration which has been publicly sceptical about the value of aid, and is the first increase in US spending after a decade of stagnation and decline under Mr Bush's predecessor, Bill Clinton.

The International Conference on Financing for Development, which ends tomorrow, brings world leaders together in an attempt to find more money to reduce poverty in the developing world.

The confusion over the size of the US package was apparently due to an "internal mixup" in the White House, prompting one aid campaigner to note ruefully yesterday: "These kinds of numbers are just spare change to them." Officials are now saying the US will gradually boost aid spending from 2004 to an extra $5bn a year by 2006, and make the increase permanent.

"Last week, we thought the US had made a small step in the right direction, now it turns out they have made a major step in the right direction," said Justin Forsyth, policy director at Oxfam.

The prospect of Europe and the US submitting rival aid bids has prompted an unaccustomed rush of optimism among some development campaigners. After a decade of declining western aid budgets, most had low expectations of the Monterrey summit.

In the runup to the conference, Washington had sternly dismissed hopes that the UN summit would mobilise significantly more resources for the world's poor. "Monterrey will not be a pledging conference," a state department official said just a week ago.

Many development charities were preparing the usual press releases trashing the summit as yet another UN talk-fest. But with a multi-billion dollar pledge from the US, matched by a similar sized undertaking from the European Union, the UN can at least claim it has started to turn the tide on rich-country indifference to poverty.

But campaigners say the leading nations have still got a long way to go if they are to provide enough aid to meet internationally agreed targets for reducing poverty.

Two years ago at the UN's millennium summit, world leaders re-committed themselves to longstanding international goals of halving extreme poverty, getting every child in the developing world into primary school and reducing infant and maternal mortality by 2015. Meeting those goals would cost $40-65bn extra in aid a year, says the World Bank - roughly double current spending.

But the combined American and EU announcements will add only about an extra $12bn a year to aid spending by 2006.

The cost of western miserliness can be measured in children's lives, according to Oxfam. The UN predicts that by 2015, about 10 million children a year will be dying before their fifth birthday, compared with a target of 4.2 million.

Campaigners point out that even assuming the US president manages to push his ambitious aid increases
is this legitimate aid?MJ
Mar 21, 2002 7:24 AM
BV - is this how we should be using aid and development money? is this what gets included in the figures from the link above? why are we protecting oil company profits rather than workign to resolve the dispute?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/colombia/story/0,11502,671165,00.html

US takes role in Colombia to new level

Oil, not drugs, is the focus of a $98m aid package to fund an army brigade to protect a pipeline from sabotage by guerrillas

Martin Hodgson in Arauca, Colombia
Thursday March 21, 2002
The Guardian

The Cano Limon oil pipeline is buried 6ft underground, but its route through the rolling Colombian prairie is clearly marked by a swath of oil slicks and scorched earth - the result of incessant bomb attacks by leftwing rebels.
Since it was completed in 1985, the pipeline has been holed so many times that locals call it "the flute". Some 2.9 million barrels of crude oil have spilled into the soil and rivers - about 11 times the amount from the Exxon Valdez disaster.

Now the US government is seeking congressional approval for $98m (£70m) to provide helicopters, equipment and training for a new Colombian army brigade to guard the pipeline.

Oil is Colombia's biggest foreign currency earner, and US officials say that the aid is essential for the Colombian government - a key ally in the US war on drugs. But critics of the plan say it is unclear whose interests will be served.

Last year, 170 bomb attacks put the pipeline out of action for most of the year, causing the loss of about $430m in oil revenue for the Colombian government.

"This is not just a statistic - it's a huge reality for a country in terms of funding everything they do, whether it's the military, the police, or hospitals," says a US government official.

The attacks also reduced by $75m the profits of Occidental Petroleum - a generous donor to both US Republican and Democrat parties, and an enthusiastic supporter of US military aid to Colombia.

"We're talking about something which is fundamental for the country. Obviously, it's important for Occidental as well, but Occidental can survive without Cano Limon," says a company spokesman.

Some fear the aid means the Bush government is more concerned with protecting the interests of American companies than in helping end a 38-year civil war.

"It's a way of saying that US interests trump everything else. There are real and legitimate reasons to protect the pipeline, but is this the best way to promote stability and the rule of law?" asked Robin Kirk of Human Rights Watch.

US officials say they have no intention of leading the US into deeper involvement in Colombia's vicious civil war, but, if approved, the aid would mark a major policy shift. Until now, US aid to Colombia has focused on fighting the drugs trade, but the new package would mean direct support for counter-insurgency operations against the guerrilla saboteurs.

Colombia's two largest guerrilla armies, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc) and the National Liberation Army (ELN) oppose foreign involvement in the nation's oil industry. According to the Colombian military, the rebels hope that the bombings will weaken the government by depriving it of foreign earnings.

From oilfields near the Venezuelan border, the pipeline snakes half the width of Colombia to the Caribbean coast, but most of the attacks occur in the first 75 miles, where it crosses Arauca state, a rebel stronghold since the 1960s.

Occidental's headquarters at the Cano Limon field are a fortified compound and company employees must be helicoptered in from the regional capital.

Troops on motorbikes buzz along the access roads, while a Colombian army surveillance plane circles overhead. According to Brigadier General Carlos Lemus, two thirds of government troops in the region defend the oil infrastructure.

But the army is incapable of protecting the entire 480-mile pipe
sorry full article hereMJ
Mar 21, 2002 7:25 AM
US takes role in Colombia to new level

Oil, not drugs, is the focus of a $98m aid package to fund an army brigade to protect a pipeline from sabotage by guerrillas

Martin Hodgson in Arauca, Colombia
Thursday March 21, 2002
The Guardian

The Cano Limon oil pipeline is buried 6ft underground, but its route through the rolling Colombian prairie is clearly marked by a swath of oil slicks and scorched earth - the result of incessant bomb attacks by leftwing rebels.
Since it was completed in 1985, the pipeline has been holed so many times that locals call it "the flute". Some 2.9 million barrels of crude oil have spilled into the soil and rivers - about 11 times the amount from the Exxon Valdez disaster.

Now the US government is seeking congressional approval for $98m (£70m) to provide helicopters, equipment and training for a new Colombian army brigade to guard the pipeline.

Oil is Colombia's biggest foreign currency earner, and US officials say that the aid is essential for the Colombian government - a key ally in the US war on drugs. But critics of the plan say it is unclear whose interests will be served.

Last year, 170 bomb attacks put the pipeline out of action for most of the year, causing the loss of about $430m in oil revenue for the Colombian government.

"This is not just a statistic - it's a huge reality for a country in terms of funding everything they do, whether it's the military, the police, or hospitals," says a US government official.

The attacks also reduced by $75m the profits of Occidental Petroleum - a generous donor to both US Republican and Democrat parties, and an enthusiastic supporter of US military aid to Colombia.

"We're talking about something which is fundamental for the country. Obviously, it's important for Occidental as well, but Occidental can survive without Cano Limon," says a company spokesman.

Some fear the aid means the Bush government is more concerned with protecting the interests of American companies than in helping end a 38-year civil war.

"It's a way of saying that US interests trump everything else. There are real and legitimate reasons to protect the pipeline, but is this the best way to promote stability and the rule of law?" asked Robin Kirk of Human Rights Watch.

US officials say they have no intention of leading the US into deeper involvement in Colombia's vicious civil war, but, if approved, the aid would mark a major policy shift. Until now, US aid to Colombia has focused on fighting the drugs trade, but the new package would mean direct support for counter-insurgency operations against the guerrilla saboteurs.

Colombia's two largest guerrilla armies, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc) and the National Liberation Army (ELN) oppose foreign involvement in the nation's oil industry. According to the Colombian military, the rebels hope that the bombings will weaken the government by depriving it of foreign earnings.

From oilfields near the Venezuelan border, the pipeline snakes half the width of Colombia to the Caribbean coast, but most of the attacks occur in the first 75 miles, where it crosses Arauca state, a rebel stronghold since the 1960s.

Occidental's headquarters at the Cano Limon field are a fortified compound and company employees must be helicoptered in from the regional capital.

Troops on motorbikes buzz along the access roads, while a Colombian army surveillance plane circles overhead. According to Brigadier General Carlos Lemus, two thirds of government troops in the region defend the oil infrastructure.

But the army is incapable of protecting the entire 480-mile pipeline. Away from the drilling rigs, troops patrol on foot.

"We need mobility and the capacity to react fast. With the right equipment we could defend it, but our resources are limited," says Gen Lemus.

Under an agreement with the Colombian government, the company provides "non
re: MJ - ColombiaBikeViking
Mar 21, 2002 12:15 PM
I know the FARC has been a problem for them for a while. I seem to recal that Pres. Pastrana had set up that "safe zone" in 1998 to try and get negotiations moving. I know the military is now trying to resolve this by force. I would think that buying a countrys product (oil) would be a big help in getting them moving toward prosperity. The oil companies would hire people to work, providing an alternative to the drug trade. With people employed, that would generate more revenue for the gov't and HOPEFULLY that extra revenue would be used to improve infrastructure, which is lacking there. South American countries are notoriously corrupt. We'll have to wait and see...

In reference to the oil, I read recently (can't remember where) that our Big Three automakers are moving forward on on fuel-cell vehicles. Ford is coming out with a smaller SUV with some sort of fuel-cell or gas/electric motor. These changes are coming, but they won't come overnight. We have a whole oil/gas infrastructure that will require a changeover (depending on fuel). I would love nothing better than to thumb our noses at the Saudis when we finally achieve (at a minimum) freedom from a majority of their oil. (airlines - different problem for alternative fuels, haven't read anything about that yet).
re: MJ - ColombiaMJ
Mar 22, 2002 1:44 AM
FARC has been operating Colombia for well over 30 years along with a fewer lesser known rebel groups, which recently have become amalgamated with FARC - it's a long history that the US is sticking it's head in to in Colombia - wrapping it up nicely to present as a recent problem is a misleading lie

I do think that any government must (or will) respond with force to a violent rebel group but as was mentioned in the article - force without development will fail

I think the problem with the plan is that it is to help the oil company not the people of Colombia - how crazy is that? why do you think there is such carnage down there in the first place? trickle down economics don't wok in western economies - why are they going to work in the third world? - it's not realistic to think that drug farmers have any possibility of employment with the oil company - nor is it relaistic to think that the profits from the venture will be realised tangibly for the people of Colombia

alternative fuel is the way forward and certainly makes more sense than a ten year supply in a pristine arctic wilderness - a cessation on reliance on foreign oil (for all nations) will have interesting (even surprising?) consequences globally

are you goiing to repsond to any of the other points?
re: MJ - ColombiaBikeViking
Mar 22, 2002 8:56 AM
Part of an earlier post didn't make it for some reason, but what is important to you may not make it on my scope. Perhaps if we ask the questions we desire answers for at the end, the other can address those questions.

The "evil" oil companies have to hire someone to work for them. The Colombian people are the best option, as they live there. There are others who can speak more eloquently to trickle-down economics, but I know companies need people to function. If you start providing meaningful employment to people, that provides choices other than the drug trade. I am not saying "hire all the cocoa farmers", but legitimate employment is not a bad thing, even if it's with an "evil" oil company. How would you ensure the oil companies "tangibly ensure the people would realize profits"? UN interaction? Colombian bureacracy? The marketplace will do this. People will not work for unfair wages and the oil companies need people to work. Both parties benefit from this symbiotic relationship.

Alternative fuel is something that needs more research, but until it is a viable alternative, oil is still the source of choice. The US is moving in that direction, but we have a HUGE infrastructure that has to change and it won't be overnight. ANWR is another topic that could get heated (another thread perhaps?), but in short, drilling would affect less than 1 percent of the Refuge and horizontal drilling preserves 99 percent of the Refuge. Our energy dependence must have two tracks; more oil independence AND alternative fuels.

Which other points? Again, something gets lost on a messageboard, with each of us only answering what we think is important. Questions at the end should help this.

THoughts?