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So who's killed more civilians in the last year...(15 posts)

So who's killed more civilians in the last year...Wayne
Jul 2, 2002 11:11 AM
palestinian suicide bombers or us in Afghanistan? WTF, this must be as least the 3rd time we've bombed a civilian target and killed a large number of people since we've been there. This must really be endearing us to the Afghani people. How long before we have another Somalia on our hands?
who's saving more lives?DougSloan
Jul 2, 2002 11:31 AM
In the long run, I'd bet that our actions in Afghanistan will save more innocent lives than not being there. The Taliban weren't exactly benevolent rulers.

Also, there is a difference between intentional murder and accidents incidental to war. While no innocent lives lost would be much prefered, it's not the same as blowing people up in restaurants on purpose.l
Didn't mean to imply they were morally...Wayne
Jul 2, 2002 11:36 AM
equivalent, rather that we are probably digging ourselves into a hole there. The big question is who is gathering our intelligence? Probably a case of one warlord using the US to off another one. I can't imagine this was an errant bomb that landed in the middle of a wedding, rather than a mis-assessment of an target.
it's so simple...mr_spin
Jul 2, 2002 12:28 PM
War would be a lot more fun if you could guarantee that only enemy combatants would be harmed.
Interesting point ... although ...Humma Hah
Jul 2, 2002 1:03 PM
... in this case, the reports I've seen are that the jets WERE detecting fire from the village ... some idiots in a wedding celebration were firing their guns in the air and the jets took that as hostile. This is Darwin Award stuff.

I don't get the Palestinian suicide bombers. I don't think they're out for huge casualty figures. Occasionally they get double-digit hits, but usually they just kill one or two Isralies and make a really gross mess. Mostly, I think they're trying to send us a message as to how greviously they feel they've been wronged -- at least that's what I think the suicidal individuals want. The folks sending them I think want continued conflict, which is also what factions in Israel want, and everyone else over there is letting these cretins have their way.

That's contrasted with our war against Al Quida, who are definitely looking for ways to run up huge body counts.
Darwin Award Stuff...Wayne
Jul 3, 2002 4:40 AM
Yes, there were people shooting off guns, apparently a very common celebritory practice in Afghanistan where most men carry guns. It's only Darwin Award material if the forseeable, commonsense, consequence of doing that is getting bombed! I think it's safe to say this is the first time this has happened. It's not like we're at war with the whole country, aren't we just trying to root out Al Quaida/TAliban elements. Also, how directed could the fire have been if they're just shooting guns in the air, and how far away was the jet when it launched it's missle. I suspect that's the last mission that pilot will ever fly, sounds like a major screw-up on someone's part.

As for Israel, as long as the two sides continue to have significant factions that don't want peace there is no hope. Sharon precipitated this recent Infatada by going to a holy site (Temple Mount?), knowing what the reaction would be from the Palestinians. Sharon continues to steal what's left of the Palestinian land by allowing settlements to be built or exist. The only thing that keeps him from being the real bad guy in this, is that the Palestinians tactic of suicide bombing is so reprehensible. At least it looks like Arafat may finally be on the way out (although if nothing else he's a survivor and he may hold out yet). As long as the right-wing controls Israel everytime peace gets anywhere in site, the radical palestinians just need a suicide bomber to return things to their current status-quo. The israeli response is predictable and ensures that the state of warfare continues.
sounds like a comparative fault case to me...:) nmmr_spin
Jul 3, 2002 6:26 AM
There is more to this story.Sintesi
Jul 3, 2002 11:03 AM
From what I heard on the news this morning the number of deaths were greatly exagerated, the wedding celebratory shootings did not trigger a reprisal, the C-140 took anti-aircraft fire and returned it as is there want in a time of war. Rumors are being reported as fact.

I propose that we all wait a week at least before passing judgement on any action in that region.
Another argument against Bush admin's secrecy...Silverback
Jul 2, 2002 1:21 PM
If reporters were allowed relatively free access, at the level they had during Vietnam, we'd KNOW what's going on instead of having to weigh, with almost no objective information, whatever story the government cooks up against whatever story the enemy cooks up. Most Americans support the "war," but I'll bet most DON'T support killing civilians.
Mistakes are going to happen, and civilians are going to be killed. But no matter how much Rumsfeld and the rest of the Bush league argue national security and the safety of our fighting men, this smacks increasingly of cover-ups CYA.
sidebar...128
Jul 3, 2002 5:13 AM
Thank You America
By Jan Nowak, Washington Post
Wednesday, July 3, 2002; Page A23

This July 4, many Americans may feel baffled and disappointed by the waves of anti-Americanism sweeping through countries that, not too long ago, were either saved or helped by the United States. Allies such as France and Great Britain and former enemies such as Germany and Japan benefited greatly from America's generosity and support in their time of need, as did Belgium, Holland, Italy, Russia, Poland, South Korea, the Philippines, Taiwan and others. Without the United States, some of these countries might no longer exist.

Those of us who remember and remain grateful should no longer remain silent. For people like me -- and there are millions of us -- this Fourth of July is a good opportunity to say, "Thank you, America."

My old country, Poland, is a good example. I was born 89 years ago on the eve of World War I in Warsaw, when Poles were forced to live under the despotic rule of the Russian czars. In 1917 Woodrow Wilson made the restoration of Polish independence one of his 14 conditions for peace. If it had not been for Wilson, Poland might have disappeared forever from the map of Europe. The United States did not have any strategic or economic interests in this remote eastern part of the European continent. But thanks to America, the ambitions of the Hohenzollern empire to dominate all of Europe were thwarted.

The war in Poland did not end in 1918, however. For six more years, the wheels of war rolled over the Polish countryside as Poles fought to repel the invasions of the Red Army. The country was left in ruins. Food was scarce. The undernourished population was hit by epidemics of typhoid and Spanish flu.

I belong to the generation of children of this era, the early 1920s, who were saved by the benevolent intervention of the United States, in the person of the future president Herbert Hoover. As a private citizen, Hoover organized the emergency supplies of food, medicine and clothing that saved a starving and sick nation. I still remember the tin boxes inscribed "American Relief Committee for Poland."

The Polish state survived, but with no economic resources, no reserves of gold or foreign currencies. Roaring inflation had brought the country to the verge of collapse. The United States came forward once again, providing the Dillon loans, which helped stabilize the Polish economy.

Following the surrender of France in 1940, Hitler was only one step from victory. The United States, by joining Great Britain as it faced alone the greater might of Nazi Germany, and at enormous sacrifice of young American lives, saved European civilization and its values. It is known that Hitler's postwar plans called for elimination of Poland's educated classes, while the rest of the population was to become slave workers. Once again, the United States saved the lives of millions. I am grateful to have been one of them.

Tragically, the defeat of Nazi Germany did not bring freedom to the nations of east and central Europe. Hitler's tyranny was replaced by Stalin's terror. It was the United States that contained the Soviet Union's drive for domination of Europe. It understood before others that the Cold War would be a struggle for human minds.

One of its major weapons in this war was the skillful use of radio. As a former radio operator with the Polish underground and later a broadcaster with the BBC foreign service, I was recruited in the early 1950s to start the Polish service of Radio Free Europe (RFE). No country but the United States would launch or could have launched such an ambitious undertaking, broadcasting from dawn to midnight.

RFE destroyed the monopoly of the Communist public media and frustrated the efforts of the Soviet Union to isolate the satellite countries from the outside world. Citizens of these countries had only to tu
I'm proud to be here. nmDougSloan
Jul 3, 2002 7:07 AM
I'm happy to be here, not always proud. nmLeisure
Jul 4, 2002 12:44 AM
Thank you, America.Stampertje
Jul 3, 2002 10:16 AM
But being grateful does not equal being uncritical. For me, the European attitude towards America now is more like trying to take the car keys away from your drunk friend than just plain anti-Americanism. America seems to expect other nations to blindly follow their lead. If that's the case, you don't need friends, you need drones. It's classic bully stuff. Europe wants to be treated like an equal partner, not like a mindless helper (and while we may not be millitary or politically equal, at least we're not mindless). We just believe that Bush doesn't always makes the right decisions.

Another point: America can't forever claim immunity from criticism based on what they did for Europe 50 years ago. Trust me, when you confront them, most Europeans are grateful. But you can't keep accusing Germany and Japan for their atrocities either - at some point the present has to take precedence over the past.

my 2 eurocents
Oh, and...Stampertje
Jul 3, 2002 10:19 AM
...I have rarely been so impressed as at the celebration of our Queen's birthday at the Dutch consulate in Chicago. I was in line for drinks behind an older gentleman who asked me where I lived. He replied that he had been there, too... in 1944. Thank you, America.

And now please be careful where you point that gun.
we saved millions of lives in Somalia, nmSintesi
Jul 3, 2002 11:27 AM