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Interventionism

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El Zilcho
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#1

Posted 07 September 2013 - 09:16 PM Edited by El Zilcho, 07 September 2013 - 09:16 PM.

I'm curious as to other people's views on Interventionism, specifically along the lines of invasions or orchestrated coups in order to reach a certain ends abroad e.g. Iraq, Afghanistan, or Libya, maybe even Syria?

 

I would class myself as a liberal interventionist - that is, someone who advocates foreign intervention in order to further liberal ideals. I would advocate the removal of despots where possible, and believe that with the advancement and military strength of developed nations being blatant, we should, as developed powers, hold some responsibility for minimising international barbarism or oppression. I do not subscribe to views that are common at the moment, some derived from backlash to controversially initiated wars (Iraq), that intervention is wrong, we "have no place over there", or that we should just butt out. I would say that isolationism on the international stage, when abuses are being carried out, is comparable to standing idly by as a crime happens in front of you.

 

But those are my views; what are yours?

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Vercetti21
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#2

Posted 07 September 2013 - 09:40 PM

As an American I identify more with George Washington's views on isolationism. Basically, we do not need to play World Police. We need to be as self-sufficient as possible and primarily take care of our domestic problems before we address foreign issues. Why is the NSA spending billions of dollars a year to spy on its own citizens? Sadly, in our day and age the media is quick to say "LOOK OVER HERE" and "LOOK OVER THERE" whenever there are dictators and other foreign boogeymen about, particularly at times when our own system is under the most scrutiny.


El Zilcho
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#3

Posted 07 September 2013 - 09:56 PM Edited by El Zilcho, 07 September 2013 - 09:56 PM.

As an American I identify more with George Washington's views on isolationism. Basically, we do not need to play World Police. We need to be as self-sufficient as possible and primarily take care of our domestic problems before we address foreign issues. Why is the NSA spending billions of dollars a year to spy on its own citizens? Sadly, in our day and age the media is quick to say "LOOK OVER HERE" and "LOOK OVER THERE" whenever there are dictators and other foreign boogeymen about, particularly at times when our own system is under the most scrutiny.

 

What would your opinion be on American involvement in WWII? Was it a justified intercession, or would you think that calamities of that scale, if not directly affecting America (or whichever country we choose as our focus) should be ignored?


El_Diablo
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#4

Posted 07 September 2013 - 11:45 PM Edited by El_Diablo, 07 September 2013 - 11:46 PM.

of course WW2 was justified.
Hitler was attempting to take over all of Eastern Europe... in addition to committing mass genocide.

 

you can't compare Interventionism of today with Internventionism during WW2.


Irviding
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#5

Posted 07 September 2013 - 11:52 PM Edited by Irviding, 07 September 2013 - 11:54 PM.

of course WW2 was justified.
Hitler was attempting to take over all of Eastern Europe... in addition to committing mass genocide.

 

you can't compare Interventionism of today with Internventionism during WW2.

Sure you could. And that's not the reason we invaded Europe - WWII on the European front was moreso about reestablishing a broken balance of power than about "stopping the genocide". The western allies didn't even know about the genocide phase of the holocaust on a large scale until 2-3 years after the war was already being fought, and even then did little to nothing about it until the war was being decisively won. Allied nations were offered the Jews by Hitler before he killed them - and most of them told him to keep them.

 

George Washington's views on isolationism are 1) archaic and 2) taken out of context. Washington was just as willing to use the ragtag navy we had at the time to enforce US interests as any other President. He deployed forces to stop pirating against US ships for example.

 

My own views on interventionism is the big "thing" that has to be true for an intervention to be warranted is US interests must be somehow furthered by said intervention. 


El_Diablo
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#6

Posted 07 September 2013 - 11:59 PM

he asked if internventionism was justified in WW2.

and the answer is OF COURSE it was for all the painfully obvious reasons; hindsight or not.

 

also, we didn't "invade" Europe.
we marched on Normandy to prevent Hitler from destroying France and Great Britain. whether or not we knew about the genocide before the fact is irrelevant. Hitler had to be stopped for the sake of stopping him.

the geopolitical situation today is nowhere near comparable to the geopolitical situation of WW2.

I maintain that you cannot use Interventionist policies of 1939 to judge interventionist policies of 2013.


El Zilcho
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#7

Posted 08 September 2013 - 12:10 AM Edited by El Zilcho, 08 September 2013 - 12:11 AM.

he asked if internventionism was justified in WW2.

and the answer is OF COURSE it was for all the painfully obvious reasons; hindsight or not.

 

So I'm putting out a clearly blatant example of necessary intervention, to compare with modern interventionism. If it can be justified for atrocities on a massive scale in Europe, why can it not be justified for moderately scaled atrocities in the Middle East, or Africa? The underlying moral basis remains similar, even if the political causes, and risks, are much divergent between WW2 and today.

 

It isn't about judging anything - it's about taking the fundamental moral grounds for intervention, and extrapolating them to the modern day, to show how there may be grounds for modern intervention should genocide, chemical attacks, or civil war warrant it.


Irviding
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#8

Posted 08 September 2013 - 12:12 AM Edited by Irviding, 08 September 2013 - 12:13 AM.

he asked if internventionism was justified in WW2.

and the answer is OF COURSE it was for all the painfully obvious reasons; hindsight or not.

 

also, we didn't "invade" Europe.
we marched on Normandy to prevent Hitler from destroying France and Great Britain. whether or not we knew about the genocide before the fact is irrelevant. Hitler had to be stopped for the sake of stopping him.

the geopolitical situation today is nowhere near comparable to the geopolitical situation of WW2.

I maintain that you cannot use Interventionist policies of 1939 to judge interventionist policies of 2013.

 

Again, they are totally different yes - but you really can't compare interventionist politics from any time in great detail. It just doesn't make sense other than the long zoomed out reason of any invention "to maintain a favorable balance of power for your nation" - same reason France joined the American Revolution. Same reason the Spanish Empire was "ganged" up on by Europe to break them down when they got too dominant. Same reason the US is going to attack Syria - to decimate an unfriendly nation and try to create a more favortable US balance of power in the middle east.

 

Yeah, we did invade Europe. Stop nitpicking at my words.  D-DAY = an INVASION


El_Diablo
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#9

Posted 08 September 2013 - 12:23 AM

you can't invade occupied land :lol:


Irviding
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#10

Posted 08 September 2013 - 12:52 AM Edited by Irviding, 08 September 2013 - 12:52 AM.

you can't invade occupied land :lol:

how about RETAKE

 

REACQUIRE

REESTABLISH

RETURN

 

god you are killing me lol


El Zilcho
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#11

Posted 08 September 2013 - 01:48 AM

 

you can't invade occupied land :lol:

how about RETAKE

 

REACQUIRE

REESTABLISH

RETURN

 

god you are killing me lol

 

This pedantry is so rampant it's severely injuring me too.

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El_Diablo
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#12

Posted 08 September 2013 - 01:53 AM

let it go you guys...

 

the issue here is that intervention into foreign affairs requires consistency in policy and consistency in support.

right now the US has neither.

 

the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been failures.

we don't have the support of the interntional community. we rolled up our sleeves with Libya but we're balking on Syria even though the situation is far worse.

 

our credibility is sh*t.

internvention is not in the US best interests right now in ANY part of the world; not just Syria.


Irviding
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#13

Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:09 AM

let it go you guys...

 

the issue here is that intervention into foreign affairs requires consistency in policy and consistency in support.

right now the US has neither.

 

the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have been failures.

we don't have the support of the interntional community. we rolled up our sleeves with Libya but we're balking on Syria even though the situation is far worse.

 

our credibility is sh*t.

internvention is not in the US best interests right now in ANY part of the world; not just Syria.

I vehemently disagree that Afghanistan has been a failure. Do you honestly think we should not have invaded Afghanistan? Iraq I think most will agree is a failure.

 

We do have the support of the international community. The Arab League called for intervention in Syria.. France and Germany both are with us. I truly believe that it is in US interest to eradicate Syria's current government - Iran will lose its only middle eastern ally, Russia will be weakened in the region, and we have removed a Hezbollah stronghold. 


Vercetti21
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#14

Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:12 AM

 

As an American I identify more with George Washington's views on isolationism. Basically, we do not need to play World Police. We need to be as self-sufficient as possible and primarily take care of our domestic problems before we address foreign issues. Why is the NSA spending billions of dollars a year to spy on its own citizens? Sadly, in our day and age the media is quick to say "LOOK OVER HERE" and "LOOK OVER THERE" whenever there are dictators and other foreign boogeymen about, particularly at times when our own system is under the most scrutiny.

 

What would your opinion be on American involvement in WWII? Was it a justified intercession, or would you think that calamities of that scale, if not directly affecting America (or whichever country we choose as our focus) should be ignored?

 

 

Was our involvement in WW2 justified? To an extent. You have to remember that most Americans were able to get behind the war because of Pearl Harbor. It was good that Hitler was stopped before more lives were lost. Did we need to bomb Nagasaki and Heroshima? Probably not.

 

Since WW2 we have stuck to the foreign policy of containment. It was an utter failure in Vietnam and even worse the soldiers who were drafted there were largely disrespected for their service. It was not all this "support the troops or else you aren't a patriot" political correctness we see today.


El_Diablo
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#15

Posted 08 September 2013 - 04:38 AM


I vehemently disagree that Afghanistan has been a failure. Do you honestly think we should not have invaded Afghanistan? Iraq I think most will agree is a failure.

 

We do have the support of the international community. The Arab League called for intervention in Syria.. France and Germany both are with us. I truly believe that it is in US interest to eradicate Syria's current government - Iran will lose its only middle eastern ally, Russia will be weakened in the region, and we have removed a Hezbollah stronghold. 

 

Afghanistan did not need invading because Afghanistan had nothing to do with 9/11 or WMD's or any of the stated reasons for supposedly authorizing the invasion in the first place. let's not rehash this old goose chase....

 

powell1.jpg

 

we do not have the support of the international community because France and Germany are not the international community. don't even get me started on the Arab League :pp

 

during the most recent gathering of world leaders in Russia this very month, president Obama recieved support from only a handful of the nations in attendence. the Security Council isn't really on our side either. France and Germany are certainly not chop liver, but the 2 of them + a tennuous NGO that claims to speak for Middle Eastern Arabs doesn't really count as international support.


sivispacem
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#16

Posted 08 September 2013 - 08:30 AM

 


I vehemently disagree that Afghanistan has been a failure. Do you honestly think we should not have invaded Afghanistan? Iraq I think most will agree is a failure.

 

We do have the support of the international community. The Arab League called for intervention in Syria.. France and Germany both are with us. I truly believe that it is in US interest to eradicate Syria's current government - Iran will lose its only middle eastern ally, Russia will be weakened in the region, and we have removed a Hezbollah stronghold. 

 

Afghanistan did not need invading because Afghanistan had nothing to do with 9/11 or WMD's or any of the stated reasons for supposedly authorizing the invasion in the first place. let's not rehash this old goose chase....

 

 

I hope you mean Iraq, because there was never any insinuation with regard to WMDs made in relation to Afghanistan, and they were inexorably linked to the training, support and funding of al-Qaeda as an organisation.


El Zilcho
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#17

Posted 08 September 2013 - 10:52 AM

Are you saying that a retort to the use of chemical weapons isn't something justified? Aside from the obvious danger of setting a precedent that their use may be permissible, we are talking about further repression of the populace by Assad's regime, this time with internationally restricted weaponry. What would justify involvement in your eyes?


sivispacem
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#18

Posted 08 September 2013 - 01:10 PM

Are you saying that a retort to the use of chemical weapons isn't something justified? Aside from the obvious danger of setting a precedent that their use may be permissible, we are talking about further repression of the populace by Assad's regime, this time with internationally restricted weaponry. What would justify involvement in your eyes?

Can you clarify whom that was aimed at? In my view the intervention in Iraq was justifiable, though botched horribly, purely because they'd broken numerous clauses of the UN resolutions surrounding UNSCOM, particularly in relation to the development of illegal long-range ballistic missiles.

El Zilcho
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#19

Posted 08 September 2013 - 02:09 PM Edited by El Zilcho, 08 September 2013 - 02:13 PM.

 

Are you saying that a retort to the use of chemical weapons isn't something justified? Aside from the obvious danger of setting a precedent that their use may be permissible, we are talking about further repression of the populace by Assad's regime, this time with internationally restricted weaponry. What would justify involvement in your eyes?

Can you clarify whom that was aimed at? In my view the intervention in Iraq was justifiable, though botched horribly, purely because they'd broken numerous clauses of the UN resolutions surrounding UNSCOM, particularly in relation to the development of illegal long-range ballistic missiles.

 

That was directed at El_Diablo, who I believe was trying to dismiss off hand the support for Syrian intervention.

 

I'd agree with you on Iraq. I think a fair amount of criticism on Iraq in the UK is the result of conflating the manipulation of the case for war with the true justification. People are irked about being lied to, and ignore the fact that a despot, and an internationally condemned one at that, was removed as a result.


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#20

Posted 08 September 2013 - 11:15 PM

As stated, intervention in WWII was a different game. Nazis had world conquest on their agenda, and basically the only thing that stood in their way was a horribly depleted Soviet army on the eastern front. A second front (Normandy) relieved pressure on the Soviets and was essential in the Allies' victory.

 

Only under the most dire of circumstances would I support intervention in the Middle East. For a multitude of reasons, but primarily because it isn't effective (often counter-effective) and costly. Think back to the 1980s when Reagan's administration decided to mingle in the Iraq-Iran conflict; the US funded Hussein's chemical/biological weapons program! The bottom line for me is that intervention on behalf of bad men in their fight against worse men (or vice versa) never turns out well. In the circus that is the Middle East, chaos only leads to more power for the most radical. When a population feels disenfranchised and desperate (e.g. Germany after WWI), it will latch on to leaders or groups that promise prosperity and revenge against their violators. 

 

In the 21st century, no nation should fear the use of WMDs by any other nation, only by rogue militant organizations. Assad is, without a doubt, a turd. But he doesn't pose the same threat to the West that the rebel groups and their links to al-Qaeda pose. There are horrible tragedies occurring over there all the time, and it's a shame. But unless there is a method to solve those problems without causing more problems, it will never be worth it in my opinion.

 

As far as any moral obligation to intervene, all I can say is that people liberate themselves. If they can't, offer them asylum or refugee status.


El_Diablo
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#21

Posted 08 September 2013 - 11:26 PM Edited by El_Diablo, 08 September 2013 - 11:27 PM.

Are you saying that a retort to the use of chemical weapons isn't something justified? Aside from the obvious danger of setting a precedent that their use may be permissible, we are talking about further repression of the populace by Assad's regime, this time with internationally restricted weaponry. What would justify involvement in your eyes?

 

I can agree - in principle - that the use of chemical weapons against civilians typically requires some kind of response.

but we're past the phase of principles and theory.

 

you seem to be worried that if we don't do anything, we're setting a poor precedent.

I'm saying that regardless of what actions we take, we've already set the precedent and it's already piss-poor.

 

we let the Syrian army run amok with bullets and bombs and convetional ballistics.

but suddenly we're going to put our foot down when they use some gas? this is bullsh*t. it doesn't matter what response we deliver at this point; we've already sent the message that it's ok for a nation to slaughter its civilians en mass.... so long as you stick to bullets.

 

we're pathetic.

 

 

I hope you mean Iraq, because there was never any insinuation with regard to WMDs made in relation to Afghanistan, and they were inexorably linked to the training, support and funding of al-Qaeda as an organisation.

 

I was speaking to both wars in general.

it is my belief that Afghnistan and Iraq were equally farcical and uncessary wars (I stop just short of calling them "illegal," but the sentiment remains).

 

I just used the picture of Powell @ the UN to make the point.


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#22

Posted 09 September 2013 - 12:03 AM Edited by Zak., 09 September 2013 - 12:04 AM.

Concerning U.S. interventionism, I'd like to bring up the elephant in the room that is double standards when it comes to principles "held high" by the administration. We will only intervene when the liberal ideals of democracy and other good-guy principles do not conflict with the interests of our friends, ie Israel, despots ravaging through South America in the 20th century to protect United Fruit and other industry interests there. Concerning CW's, specifically Israel comes to mind, as many reports of the use of White Phosphorus against Palestinians in 2009 have come to light. Why didn't we intervene then? Where the f*ck was the red line then, Obama?

 

Also, El_Diablo, just want to clarify: when you bring up that US interests must be furthered by the said intervention, you're speaking of a nebulous entity that is composed of a wide-array of interests. Whose interests exactly then? It could be argued that every conflict the US has ever blasted itself into is in the interest of the US, specifically the military industrial complex. Example being, if it weren't for the MIC's interest in entering WWII, and the prosperity gained through and thereafter from such economic mobilization, maybe things would have been a lot different concerning the resolving of the Great Depression. I can't even begin to imagine what would have happened then without those interests pushing for a war. But yeah, just want to know if you had a specific US interest in mind.

 

Just like to say, it's refreshing to read a good discussion, D&D seems to guarantee a more-or-less greater degree of civility.


sivispacem
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#23

Posted 09 September 2013 - 06:59 AM

The white phosphorus argument is a bit of a misleading one as it's not a chemical weapon, isn't restricted in its usage under either the Chemical Weapons Convention or the Geneva Protocol, and isn't illegal to use against military targets. Questionable in legality for use in densely populated civilian areas, potentially a war crime though not definitively so. Chemical weapons are different as their use is not just illegal against civilians as with most exotic weaponry under the various international treaties tends to be, but illegal in warfare full stop.

Agents that are restricted under various CW treaties are limited to the following groups
  • Nerve agents
  • Blood agents
  • Pulmonary agents
  • Blister agents
  • Lacheymatory agents
  • Incapacitating agents
  • Ricin, which doesn't come under any of the above categories by method of action

    White phosphorus doesn't fall into any of these categories.
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Melchior
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#24

Posted 11 September 2013 - 02:33 AM

Do I think it's okay to intervene in the affairs of other countries in order to spread liberal ideals? Sure, why not? But that question is purely academic since we don't do that; nor have we ever done that. We're an imperialistic society that invades others for the benefit of a small part of our population and I'm not too sure how anyone can defend that practise. 


El_Diablo
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#25

Posted 12 September 2013 - 05:14 PM

We're an imperialistic society that invades others for the benefit of a small part of our population

that's actually a pretty poor description of US foreign policy...


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#26

Posted 13 September 2013 - 04:43 AM

 

We're an imperialistic society that invades others for the benefit of a small part of our population

that's actually a pretty poor description of US foreign policy...

 

Oh okay then, what about US involvement in East Timor, Iran or Nicaragua? That all part of an altruistic missions to spread democracy and fight terrorism?


El_Diablo
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#27

Posted 13 September 2013 - 11:44 PM Edited by El_Diablo, 14 September 2013 - 05:22 AM.

we're far from perfect.

but I never said that.





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