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brianlemon





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PostPosted: Wed Sep 06, 2006 11:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Steve
Didn't refer to Muslims, referred to Arabs who have been occupiers of the Persian lands for mega years.
The Persians were engineers, poets, inventors and true creators of civiliization while our forbearers were living in mud huts.
I have no problem with Muslims,but have a real problem with Wahaabism causing all the trouble in the world.
Examine the inventions on the site you referenced - how many of the inventions were in the last 600 years? How many were supportive (compasses, watches, gunpowder) that were useful in their imperialism?
Stephen





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PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2006 12:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, I thought that when you said "Arab Muslims" that arab was the adjective and muslims was the noun. I suppose that you are focusing on a narrower group of Muslims.

With that said, I don't think that we should be making blanket statements against a race of people (ie. arabs). It's not fair to those individuals with whom we have no quarrel.

Anyways, I think we're off topic here.
Peter





Joined: 03 Sep 2006
Posts: 29
Reputation: 13.4

PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2006 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Stephen wrote:
brianlemon wrote:
On the Ceeb this AM, they did a little feature on folks in Frobisher Bay, and I had a moment of clear thought.
I thought Kayaks.
Kayaks are now used in the bloody Olympics and were invented by stone age Inuit.
It's one more invention than the Arab Muslims have ever thunk up. (suicide bombing and burqas don't count).
Who can blame the Persians from wanting to section these folks off.


They may not have invented the kayak, but muslims have contributed to civilization...

http://www.geocities.com/mutma.....ntors.html


I'd like to add some insight.

Firstly, that website is biased and I question many of those assertions.

Brianlemon, may be referring to the fact that ancient Arabs pre-Islam did not contribute much if anything to the world civilization. And Arabia itself still contributes very little to humanity nor has it over the last 1400 years of Islamic rule. Those muslim "inventions" are mostly sourced in communities that were educational inspirations to the world before the Arabs wrecked everything with their invasions. For anyone who think America's intentions are bad go back to the 7th century and watch the Arabs. Plus they still think the same way.

Gunpowder, that's still the chinese:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G.....nd_origins

Algebra, that was a Persian muslim.

As I stated above most of the so called Mulsim inventions are truely Egyption or Persian.

Also, many of those inventions were invented in Baghdad which historically was part of the Persian empire and before that the Assyrians and Babylonians. Iraq has been a place of learning and knowledge for thousands of years. Arabs invaded Iraq and Iran back in the 7th century. They burnt all the Persian libraries (not something smart people do) then they realized they could not manage the empire (finances, communications, agriculture, etc) so they had persians administer the muslim empire. They also invaded Egypt which historically has contributed a lot to the world. And the Egyption version of Arabic is the most widely used in academic and literature. It's the defacto world standard.

The references to the Ottoman Empire, that's the Turkish Administration.

Believe it or not, there is anger towards Arabs from other peoples in the middle east.

Zero and Base 10. Those are Indian inventions. Arab numerals are well known because they are the Arab version of Indian numerals and Arabic has been wide spread.

Think about this statement to get a perspective on Arab academia:
Quote:
"Spain translates as many books into Spanish each year as the entire Arab world has translated into Arabic since the ninth century."

-- From the United Nations' Arab Human Development Report 2002, cited in Lewis, Crisis of Islam, 115-117
Donald Hughes





Joined: 02 Sep 2006
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Location: Libertarian socialism

PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2006 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
So we should ignore brutal dictators and allow them to violate human rights?
I never said that. We should work to dismantle hierarchical and oppressive systems of power wherever we find them. Often we support these systems, and certainly our own systems are hierarchical and oppressive in many ways. I am suggesting we move away from supporting militarism and aggression, finance the most efficient response (which I believe should start with dismantling various forms of economic oppression and desperation), start undoing reactionary policies within our own communities (such as the war on drugs) and more broadly to change the fundamentals of our economic system to orient us away from profit and expansion. These are probably in order of controversy, and I wouldn't expect anyone to support them without personal investigation.
Quote:
Did you support the Bosnian war?
I don't know enough about it. From what little I've read about the various instances of Western involvement in the former Yugoslavia, there does seem to be a general ignorance of the evolving situation. No one seemed to be able to "grip" what was happening and couldn't support a consistency policy. It didn't fit the standard post-Cold War narrative about democracy changing everything. This led to the usual UN mission confusion, poorly planned ideas like the Kosovo adventure, etc. I've read some interesting articles about all of this by Zizek, but I can't say much of use about it.
Quote:
Should we be paying reparations to the Germans?
Germany was an aggressor state that also had egregious human rights violations. I think it was correct to eject them from the communities they imposed themselves on and dismantle their militaristic state. Reparations should of course be based on ability to pay, in some ways, if we need to build metrics for such things. Post-war Germany was not initially in any position to "repay" for their aggression, and the split between East and West certainly made such concepts blurry. There was also the skeletons of colonialism in everyone's closet, although in the post-war era these largely shifted from direct or semi-direct rule to economic rule and violent nationalist conflicts.

The American response to Iraqi aggression was inconsistent and varied with mood, for example they were pleased by Iraqi aggression against Iran but were less impressed by their decision to move this aggression south towards Kuwait.
Craig
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2006 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Donald Hughes wrote:
Germany was an aggressor state that also had egregious human rights violations. I think it was correct to eject them from the communities they imposed themselves on and dismantle their militaristic state.


And presumedly remove Hitler from power which you have avoided saying.

Quote:
Reparations should of course be based on ability to pay


You MUST be kidding. At the very least they could have incurred a debt.

Quote:
in some ways, if we need to build metrics for such things. Post-war Germany was not initially in any position to "repay" for their aggression, and the split between East and West certainly made such concepts blurry. There was also the skeletons of colonialism in everyone's closet, although in the post-war era these largely shifted from direct or semi-direct rule to economic rule and violent nationalist conflicts.


Deflection and obsfucation.

Quote:
The American response to Iraqi aggression was inconsistent and varied with mood, for example they were pleased by Iraqi aggression against Iran but were less impressed by their decision to move this aggression south towards Kuwait.


No offense. But that's a pretty wishy-washy stance. WWII cost over 62 million lives (80% allied). Hitler killed 6 million jews. Hussein killed 300,000 over his 24 year rule and fewer than 100,000 have died in this conflict. Mathematically, Saddam was the less costly dictator to remove. So I'm not clear on your rules of engagement.

This notion that because the USA was at one point friendly with Saddam that they can never turn against him regardless of his actions is absurd. Many western leaders once shook hands with Hitler but fortunately that didn't guarentee his safety. You seem to be arguing that because we once helped Saddam that we can never fight against him.
Donald Hughes





Joined: 02 Sep 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2006 10:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
And presumedly remove Hitler from power which you have avoided saying.
Actually I went further. I said I would dismantle the militaristic state. Hitler is one person who rode very large forces, just killing him as if a dictator is some supervillain is the most dangerous policy possible. Although it may be a useful strategy if you want to keep the same basic structure in place for various reasons, for example when the West repressed the Left in Japan and integrated many war-time bureaucrats and leaders into the post-war system.
Quote:
You MUST be kidding. At the very least they could have incurred a debt.
They incurred a sort of moral debt they should mind. This is why the German state offered reparations repeatedly to Israel and some specific Jews. But I was pointing out the obvious, that the post-war German state was initially shattered and in no position to pay, while there was the real possibility of war over things like Berlin. The coalition around West Germany considered East Germany to be in need of a sort of second liberation, while East Germany officially considered West Germany to be a successor state to the Nazi regime that was set up by capitalist powers as a defensive gesture against Stalin.

Quote:
No offense. But that's a pretty wishy-washy stance. WWII cost over 62 million lives (80% allied). Hitler killed 6 million jews. Hussein killed 300,000 over his 24 year rule and fewer than 100,000 have died in this conflict. Mathematically, Saddam was the less costly dictator to remove. So I'm not clear on your rules of engagement.
Please explain your "mathematical" solution here in more detail, I don't follow. Anyways, Saddam Hussein was not a "New Hitler." Although it may be useful to remember that the person who called him this repeatedly was Bush Sr. He did so after the US had essentially backed him during some of the most intense parts of his repression. Bush Sr., of course, did not invade and occupy Iraq after the crime of the invasion of Kuwait (or Iran, for that matter). He gives his reasoning in various quotes:
Quote:
"While we hoped that popular revolt would topple Saddam, we did not wish to see the breakup of the Iraqi state. Extending the war into Iraq would have incurred incalculable human and political costs. We would have been forced to occupy Baghdad and, in effect, rule Iraq. The coalition would instantly have collapsed, the Arabs deserting in anger and other allies pulling out as well. Unilaterally exceeding the U.N.'s mandate would have destroyed the precedent of international response to aggression we hoped to establish. Had we gone the invasion route, the U.S. could still be an occupying power in a bitterly hostile land."
But on to the next point:
Quote:
This notion that because the USA was at one point friendly with Saddam that they can never turn against him regardless of his actions is absurd. Many western leaders once shook hands with Hitler but fortunately that didn't guarentee his safety. You seem to be arguing that because we once helped Saddam that we can never fight against him.
Nope. But it would be useful to admit up front the whole story. The problem is that once those stories are told they complicate the situation. In that larger story we start to see how we see-saw between supporting dictators and then condemning or removing them when they do something that endangers other parts of our larger designs. The neoconservative response to this was to call for permanent war against all regimes they oppose. I think that the costs of this are so immense and insane that this always buckles towards realism where neoconservatism is simply used as a functional ideology for the aggression you do want to do. For this reason plus the immense costs of war and the dangers of aggression, I think that instead of acting as a functional part of a de facto imperial system that we should depend on alternatives.

However, yes, I do think that we should assist Iraqis in their struggles for freedom. I think that we should have especially done so when they set up spontaneous worker's councils within years of the first Gulf War, and done more to assist the Kurds towards this end in the North. But we have to look globally and admit that there are much larger problems, without a military solution, that should be addressed as priorities with our attention and money. This is why, for example, I would support much more money going into civil society and development groups in China, but would not support invading China.
Craig
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2006 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Donald Hughes wrote:
In that larger story we start to see how we see-saw between supporting dictators and then condemning or removing them when they do something that endangers other parts of our larger designs.


Hold on. Different president. Different administration. You can't expect every administration to carry on a consistent foreign policy. If the NDP were ever elected in Canada (God forbid) are you suggesting that they would HAVE to maintain continuity in our established foreign policy because we wouldn't want to "see-saw"?

Quote:
However, yes, I do think that we should assist Iraqis in their struggles for freedom


Glad to hear that. I think many people on your side of this debate are happy when things go poorly in Iraq because it improves their chances in the mid-terms. That is very sad.
Donald Hughes





Joined: 02 Sep 2006
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Location: Libertarian socialism

PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2006 1:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Hold on. Different president. Different administration. You can't expect every administration to carry on a consistent foreign policy.
Actually I am not saying that the policy see-saws because of political orientation. It is a consistent overarching policy, actually, that finds different interpretations and different strategies of implementation at different moments. I am interested in opposing this overarching policy and the social fundamentals that help cause it, not shifting from one President to another.
Quote:
Glad to hear that. I think many people on your side of this debate are happy when things go poorly in Iraq because it improves their chances in the mid-terms. That is very sad.
Those people aren't really on my "side" of the debate, I don't think. Or at least maybe I'm not on theirs. They tend to support the same basic system but believe it could be implemented better or with more nuanced interpretation.
Craig
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2006 9:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Donald Hughes wrote:
Actually I am not saying that the policy see-saws because of political orientation. It is a consistent overarching policy, actually, that finds different interpretations and different strategies of implementation at different moments. I am interested in opposing this overarching policy and the social fundamentals that help cause it, not shifting from one President to another.


Fair enough. But your expectation that all countries act ideolistically is unrealistic and certainly the failure to do so if not specifically an American trait. All countries act in their best interest at a particular point in time. When Americans do it it has bigger repercussions then when less influencial countries do it. America acted in what it thought was its best interests in the eighties (supporting the Iraqi side in the conflict) and the situation changed in the nineties. I don't fault them for that. And even if you do fault them for that - mistakes of the past shouldn't preclude us from making the right choice today.
Donald Hughes





Joined: 02 Sep 2006
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2006 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
But your expectation that all countries act ideolistically is unrealistic and certainly the failure to do so if not specifically an American trait... All countries act in their best interest at a particular point in time.
I never said it was a specifically American trait. In fact, and I'm partly to blame, we are getting too close to the abstract idea that states are Leviathan-like bodies that follow some indepedent course. In reality, states are collections of radically different opinions and intentions. There is no real intrinsic "national interest", and such interests tend really to be about either absurd idealism or crass support for the ruling/coordinator classes. Criticizing the actions and tendencies of states has two functions. The first is to expose hypocrisy that the state is unable to meet even its own definitions of what it considers justice and perhaps prevent some of the outer margins of injustice. The second is to demonstrate that the state has intrinsically violent and repressive tendencies that when admitted have to be somehow mitigated or overcome. This applies also to the fundamentals underneath and integrated with the state, such as capitalist economy.
Quote:
mistakes of the past shouldn't preclude us from making the right choice today.
A true slogan of radicalism. Agreed. I will be excited to see some of the new experiments in constructing socialism over the coming decades.
Craig
Site Admin




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PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2006 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Donald Hughes wrote:
Agreed. I will be excited to see some of the new experiments in constructing socialism over the coming decades.


We have been constructing socialism in this country since the great depression - and it is making me greatly depressed :)

Quote:
The second is to demonstrate that the state has intrinsically violent and repressive tendencies that when admitted have to be somehow mitigated or overcome


The problem is that there are many countries. And if you manage to overcome the "intrinsically violent tendencies" of your own state then how to manage to defend yourself from other states that have failed to control themselves. Can we not be pro-active in our defence?

Quote:
There is no real intrinsic "national interest"


Self preservation?

Good debate Donald 8)
Peter





Joined: 03 Sep 2006
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Craig wrote:

Can we not be pro-active in our defence?


Defence is not pro-active it's re-active. An attack is pro-active.
FF_Canuck





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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2006 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Defence is not pro-active it's re-active. An attack is pro-active.


You're just arguing semantics. You can defend by attacking, and the sense that once your opponent is defeated, they can no longer attack YOUR defenses. By only defending, the best result you can hope for is a draw. IMO the only way to actually win anything is with agressive action, be it diplomatic, financial, or military action.
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