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DireWolfSpirit

International Events VII- Afghan Catastrophe

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34 minutes ago, DireWolfSpirit said:

Here let's put things right. Americans probably never achieve independence without her (France). At least not for many, many generations into the future after 1776.

Something all Americans should understand.

Plainly stated, if France hadn't supported the United States during the American Revolution, there wouldn't be a United States today. George Washington was a great general, but the Continental Army simply didn't have the money, men, training, or seafaring vessels necessary to defeat the British.Nov 17, 2015

?????

I suppose he kept the army together, but what battles did he win? "Great General" seems hyperbole. He was "A General"

Can't count Boston or Yorktown. They were sieges. His presence was irrelevant.

Trenton/Princeton is the only thing that comes to mind that could even remotely apply.

Monmouth maybe.

The greatest victories of the war would have happened without him.  (Saratoga)

 

Edit: Hindsight's the best. B)

Edited by A True Kaniggit

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17 minutes ago, A True Kaniggit said:

?????

I suppose he kept the army together, but what battles did he win? "Great General" seems hyperbole. He was "A General"

Can't count Boston or Yorktown. They were sieges. His presence was irrelevant.

Trenton/Princeton is the only thing that comes to mind that could even remotely apply.

Monmouth maybe.

The greatest victories of the war would have happened without him.  (Saratoga)

 

Edit: Hindsight's the best. B)

I'm not well versed enough in history to dispute Washington's standing, that point is tangential to the main theme of France bailed us out bigly and without said assistance were staying under King Georges thumb.:D

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28 minutes ago, DireWolfSpirit said:

I'm not well versed enough in history to dispute Washington's standing, that point is tangential to the main theme of France bailed us out bigly and without said assistance were staying under King Georges thumb.:D

Yeah. But what have they done for us recently :D?

 

I mean, in Afghanistan I knew 3 British soldiers. Pete (short for Peter), Tom (Short for Thomas), and Chris (Short for Christopher).

Where were my French allies? Somewhere else? Inconceivable!

 

Edit: In a non-flippant remark. I understand how our allies in France are angry about this. Though if we're all being honest with each other, Australia probably made the right choice.

Like it or not, the United States of America is still leading in military technology/innovation. We pump shit tons of taxpayer money into research/development to keep it that way.

France is rightfully pissed that their deal was broken

Australia made a decision that in the long term would better help them defend themselves.

Edited by A True Kaniggit

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8 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

@Arakan,

I think you're a bit quick to go right to xenophobia. It was a playful joke. Now that said, not all jokes land. I got a warning point for a Nazi reference I made responding to you which was not meant to actually call your grandparents Nazis. I had made the same joke a few times to @A Horse Named Stranger, and he in kind was playful. The intent of a joke matters, as well as who makes it, and if it's not funny then you need to make it clear why. Another example, I once made a joke about the U.S. having to save England in WW2. @Hereward took offense to it, so I apologized, explained the context, and we kept things moving. Xenophobia implies actual fear and hatred. I don't think that's in play here. 

Regarding the topic at hand, Frances does have a right to be angry, but it does seem petty overall because at the end of the day they lost out on a contract that as far as I can tell they weren't meeting, and Australia was presented with a better deal and took it. Those are the breaks sometimes.

Now this here is actual xenophobia. Obviously relations with China for U.S. and other Western powers are complicated, but it should not be viewed as a great outcome because China is unhappy. 

Lol. We are in a cold war with the genocidal, totalitarian CCP and you’re trying to pitch it as some kind of example of xenophobia?

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4 minutes ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Lol. We are in a cold war with the genocidal, totalitarian CCP and you’re trying to pitch it as some kind of example of xenophobia?

Do you not see how the latter thinking influences the former perspective of the situation?

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Looking at things globally in a lot of ways, me personally, from here in the USA, would prefer to be strong allies with France and the EU than the UK.  As much as my own cultural imprint maps are English. Sigh. But then our English friends feel the same way, so there's that.

At this moment.

However, all of us in the "West" continue to screw up in ways that seem to inexorably leading to all catastrophes happening all at once. So, you know, eff us all.

We see it right here on this forum. Most of us have a cool internationalist viewpoint and leaning, knowing we are all connected. Well a minority of us on this forum don't, but we know who you are. So never mind because it's far more important that we reiterate over and over against xenophobia, racism, etc.

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2 hours ago, Free Northman Reborn said:

Lol. We are in a cold war with the genocidal, totalitarian CCP and you’re trying to pitch it as some kind of example of xenophobia?

I mean the US could easily be described as a "genocidal, totalitarian" state, so not sure what difference that could possibly make.

Edited by larrytheimp

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2 minutes ago, larrytheimp said:

I mean the US could easily be described as a "genocidal, totalitarian" state, so not sure what difference that could possibly make.

Now, I'm not American nor have any sympathy for US foreign policy, or that much for country in general, but it only a complete idiot would see no difference between the two.

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48 minutes ago, Winterfell is Burning said:

Now, I'm not American nor have any sympathy for US foreign policy, or that much for country in general, but it only a complete idiot would see no difference between the two.

Didn't say I see no difference between the two, my intent was to show that I didn't see why those criteria preclude FNR's response from being xenophobic.  If we're supposed to assume China is bad I'd like to see a little more effort than two descriptors that could just as accurately be attributed to the US.  

The US has the world's largest prison population and has committed two very obvious genocides.

I'm not saying there's no difference, I'm saying I'd like to see a little more rigor than "anything China does is bad".

I'm just not that interested in these "china bad" arguments going unchallenged, particularly in a nationalist context .  The press and the MIC would love another cold war.  And there's already enough Sinophobia out there without throwing gas on the fire.   

Edited by larrytheimp

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I love a lot of US culture, I love Frank Herbert, Hemingway, many great movies out of Hollywood, great musicians en masse. I even admire the intrinsic American optimism that no matter how difficult the task at hand, somehow we will solve it, even if we right now have no clue how but we will solve it. I admire that. Don’t call me xenophobic Anti-American, call me the honest, very direct, no sugar coating friend. 

But the US political set up and system is a complete different beast. And so much shit has happened in the last 20 years, that a lot of it got normalized simply due to the fact that we as humans get used to the biggest shit quite fast.

Who speaks of Guantanamo nowadays? Still exists and still is such a fucked up injustice. But we are used to it. People can’t even be named prisoners there (detainees) to deny them any human rights. Many „detainees“ are guilty of nothing concrete but kept there and tortured there for years nevertheless. Some die. There are reports of dozens of deaths in Guantanamo over the years.

Where do you think Putin or China learned to do outrageous stuff and still get away with it? Teacher USA. „Are those Russian soldiers in Ukraine, Mr Putin?“ „They have no unit insignia, so I have no idea who they are, not official Russian troops.“ Yep. Just don’t call them prisoners, and everything is „alright“. 

„Mr Xi Xinping, what about the Uighur camps?“ „Oh they are just education centers, with top of the notch sanitation and sleeping rooms, much better than Guantanamo, dare I say.“ Yep. Just don’t call them prisoners, and everything is „alright“.

I know that I often come across as harsh but someone has to. The US of the last 20 years went so much down the rabbit hole, that even political affiliation doesn’t matter. Everyone is tainted. We accept extra-judicial killings all around the globe (in countries the US is not at war with) via drones and joysticks to a degree (thousands per year) which would have shocked anybody in the 70s or 80s from a legal point of view. But now? Normalized. That many of these drones or other black ops are coordinated and conducted from Ramstein, Germany is of course another aspect which makes me extra angry. Because we (Germans) are complicit, we (our politicians with very few exceptions) don’t talk about it. 

We as the West lost so much ethical integrity or at least the will to have integrity, that any criticism towards China or Russia sounds hollow. They laugh about it. „You tell me my bombers bomb too much and indiscriminate in Syria?“ „Yes Mr Putin.“ „Well maybe you are right. I will take drones next time, those you use in Pakistan, Somalia, Libya, Sinai, Iraq, Afghanistan or Yemen. And when we kill too many civilians and the press gets knowledge about it, we will just say ‚ups sorry, was a terrible mistake‘ and continue.“ 

 

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9 minutes ago, Arakan said:

Where do you think Putin or China learned to do outrageous stuff and still get away with it? Teacher USA.

 

Look I like to tear into the USA as much as the next man but this idea that Putin learned to be a shitbag from fucking America rather than being a former KGB agent in the Soviet Union is an example of the kind of thing that makes you sound obsessed to the point of xenophobia. It comes across sometimes like you think if the US didn't exist no-one would have done anything evil in the last 100 years. 

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4 hours ago, polishgenius said:

Look I like to tear into the USA as much as the next man but this idea that Putin learned to be a shitbag from fucking America rather than being a former KGB agent in the Soviet Union is an example of the kind of thing that makes you sound obsessed to the point of xenophobia. It comes across sometimes like you think if the US didn't exist no-one would have done anything evil in the last 100 years. 

True.

There is an argument for this "We as the West lost so much ethical integrity or at least the will to have integrity, that any criticism towards China or Russia sounds hollow" but not for the other.

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5 hours ago, polishgenius said:

 

Look I like to tear into the USA as much as the next man but this idea that Putin learned to be a shitbag from fucking America rather than being a former KGB agent in the Soviet Union is an example of the kind of thing that makes you sound obsessed to the point of xenophobia. It comes across sometimes like you think if the US didn't exist no-one would have done anything evil in the last 100 years. 

The problem with certain sections of the left is to assume the US (often coupled with capitalism) is, directly or indirectly, the source of all evil in the world, which, ironically enough, still is a form of American exceptionalism if you think about it.

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9 minutes ago, Winterfell is Burning said:

ironically enough, still is a form of American exceptionalism if you think about it.

 

 

Yeah I was just gonna reply to Padraig that it's almost xenophobic in both directions, the original thought. Allow non-Western nations some agency to be bad on their own account ffs. Like he says, it's perfectly fine and indeed very sensible to slam much of Western nations' actions, but not sensible to pretend that everything bad comes from 'Merca. 

And yeah to the broader point of some sections of the left, as a Polish child of refugees from communism, I sometimes run into tits on twitter who love to tell people that since the US is bad, its opponents the Soviet Union must have been good.

Edited by polishgenius

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39 minutes ago, Winterfell is Burning said:

The problem with certain sections of the left is to assume the US (often coupled with capitalism) is, directly or indirectly, the source of all evil in the world,

I've never read or heard anyone saying the US was the only source of evil in the world. That's a pretty obvious strawman imho.

If you include the ideology (capitalism - that really morphed into something else - that we tend to call "neo-liberalism"), then yes, we are talking about the major source of evil in the last 50-60 years of world history. The only other movement that comes close to that in the same time period would be the Chinese cultural revolution.
Not that there is anything "exceptional" here. Turn the clock back enough, and you have the European powers instead of the US, working with a comparable ideology, and undoubtebly being responsible for far worse, though over longer periods of time.

Where @Arakan is wrong is that he throws this at individual Americans, when many people on this board actively oppose the ideology or US imperialism, or both. And quite honestly, even those who support the movement (I've seen a few here) generally don't know what they're doing.

I'm of the opinion that this is stuff that's best left aside, as none of us has any kind of control on the greater movements of history, or politics, or economics. Our place of birth is accidental, and none of us should take pride or blame for it. Those who play that game do so at their own peril.

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3 hours ago, Winterfell is Burning said:

The problem with certain sections of the left is to assume the US (often coupled with capitalism) is, directly or indirectly, the source of all evil in the world, which, ironically enough, still is a form of American exceptionalism if you think about it.

That's an interesting thought.

I hope I don't appear guilty of that.

I am a capitalist so I'm certain there's no coupling going on.

When I criticize my governments foreign policy it's always with the forethought of "we can do this better".

I'm equally critical of both parties when I see foreign policy shortcomings as well.

Also if I go on a lot about U.S. misdeeds it's likely because the majority of stories we get bombarded with are about something they often have their fingers in so there's just a lot more to point at.

We probably should be talking a lot more about the other 200 countries in the International thread anyways I suppose.

Edited by DireWolfSpirit

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1 hour ago, Rippounet said:

If you include the ideology (capitalism - that really morphed into something else - that we tend to call "neo-liberalism"), then yes, we are talking about the major source of evil in the last 50-60 years of world history

Is this because it was ever present over that 50/60 year period?  For example, if I look over the last 50-60 years, USSR lead communism sticks out dramatically but it obviously didn't survive half that period.

1 hour ago, Rippounet said:

I've never read or heard anyone saying the US was the only source of evil in the world.

In fairness, while what you say is true, Arakan went a little too far down that road.

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13 minutes ago, Padraig said:

Is this because it was ever present over that 50/60 year period?  For example, if I look over the last 50-60 years, USSR lead communism sticks out dramatically but it obviously didn't survive half that period.

In fairness, while what you say is true, Arakan went a little too far down that road.

Also, to what point can capitalism be blamed for individual actions of players and governments is debatable in many cases, particularly in cases of kleptocracies and/or authoritarian regimes-  for example, here in Latin America, Pinochet's government love of capitalism and free market, neoliberal economics became (in)famous, but that was in part because this was very much the exception among the dictatorships and their supporters (not a coincidence than when Fernando Henrique Cardoso begun a privatization program in Brazil in the 1990's, Bolsonaro suggested he should be sent to the firing squad for treason).

Also, mind you, while I never saw anyone say the US is the source of all evil in the world, I never saw anyone say they were voting for Trump because all those black and brown people need to be put in their place, and yet...

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2 hours ago, Rippounet said:

If you include the ideology (capitalism - that really morphed into something else - that we tend to call "neo-liberalism"), then yes, we are talking about the major source of evil in the last 50-60 years of world history. The only other movement that comes close to that in the same time period would be the Chinese cultural revolution.

 

To an extent that's true, but it's a very different argument to what Arakan was doing, which started off in this particular instance with blaming MAGA politics for a bad joke about the French surrendering easily. I was exaggerating a teeny bit, but not very much, though I don't want to belabour the point, which wasn't based on just what he said in this topic or any other individual thing.

On this question itself, of capitalism, because it is an interesting one: well, it's the single biggest source of evil because it's the single most popular ethos and powerful force, but there's been plenty of horrible evil from other sources, they just didn't come from one single idea you can point at. The atrocities of Rwanda and other African problems being remnants of pre-Capitalist, really, Western aggression coupled with local tensions. The Balkan wars and ethnic cleansing in the region being aftershocks of communism combined with, again, local tensions. You could argue that Islamic extremism often rises in response to Capitalism, but it isn't caused by or a result of it, and Christian extremism often operates in conjunction with capitalism, or within capitalist nations, but isn't it and has different ideologies driving it. 

Although it probably is capitalism that caused Ed Sheeran to right Galway Girl so you may be right. 

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