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Author Topic: Afghanistan Quagmire
jeff house
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posted 10 September 2006 12:13 PM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
the risk to the NATO forces fighting militants in Afghanistan — including more than 2,000 Canadian troops — is approaching the level faced by the then-Soviets, who abandoned their war there in 1989 after 10 years.

cbc


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 10 September 2006 12:57 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Utter nonsense, of course.

The Soviet Union suffered some 30,000 casualties in Afghanistan.

They were fighting against guerrillas who were being financed and armed by the most powerful military nation in the world.

Canadians are fighting against people with assault rifles and IEDs. It's one of the most one-sided wars in history.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Neocynic
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posted 10 September 2006 03:10 PM      Profile for Neocynic     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Game Over in Afghanistan
As per the recent IISS Strategic Survey which deemed the American adventure in Afghanistan as "lost" and the recent Senlis Council Report finding that after 5 years, over half of the country is under Taliban control, one needs to ask what is being accomplished by yet more dead Canadian troops.
The Taliban have recently signed a peace agreement with Pakistan, hence allowing them to concentrate along just one front. Opium production is booming to the enrichment of the Taliban-like warlords. The Karzei Government is wobbling, exercising sovereignty over nothing more than the dirt beneath the West's combat boots, suicide bombing has returned to the streets of the capital, and NATO ministers recently convened in an effort to draft another 2,500 troops.
George Bush is facing impeachment after this November and US withdrawals from the Iraq disaster appear inevitable. Al-Queda will then be freed to devote all of its resources to routing NATO with its politically weak mandate from Afghanistan.
It is time for the Harper Yahoos to realize that the King is dead, their neocon mentors are on the run from the halls of power, and there is no political gain to be had slavishly mimicking US militarists.
Afghanistan is now merely antiquated windowdressing for the failed Bush Agenda. That failure and its implications have yet to sink in with the Harper Government and its supporters.
It appears that the only reason we continue to pour blood into Afghanistan is the Harper Yahoos' relish for such priceless publicity as "Dead Canadian Soldiers" as proof of their rabid fealty to Bush and its purchase of American goodwill in advancement of our trade and tourism interests.

From: Toronto, Canada | Registered: Sep 2006  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 10 September 2006 03:20 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Taliban assassinate Afghan governor
From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 10 September 2006 03:25 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Sure got those guys on the run now.
From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
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posted 10 September 2006 03:32 PM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It would be nice if Spector would think one moment before writing that something is "utter nonsense".

Here is what was said:

quote:
Sheila Bird, the vice-president of Britain's Royal Statistical Society, said in the Sept. 9 issue of New Scientist magazine that she made the conclusion after analyzing casualty rates and the number of soldiers deployed on each mission.

Bird said the risk to the NATO forces fighting militants in Afghanistan — including more than 2,000 Canadian troops — is approaching the level faced by the then-Soviets, who abandoned their war there in 1989 after 10 years.


What is being discussed is not the number of casualties over a ten year period, nor even the number of casualties per year.

What is being discussed is the RISK that an individual solider will be killed in action.

That is an important fact, especially for the individual soldiers.

Of course Canada will never have 30,000 casualties while having 2200 troops in Afghanistan . I think the Vice President of the Royal Statistical Society probably knew that.


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 10 September 2006 03:34 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Nonsense.

[ 10 September 2006: Message edited by: Cueball ]


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
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posted 10 September 2006 04:17 PM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here's more:

quote:
Barnett R. Rubin, director of studies and senior fellow at the Center on International Cooperation at New York University, said in a recent interview that a strategy devoted to destroying Taliban remnants has diverted resources from developing a strong central government in Kabul.

''There was from the beginning and still is a contradiction between the counter-terrorism or counterinsurgency mission and the mission of building a stable, sovereign Afghan national state,'' said Rubin, who served as an advisor to the U.N. special representative for Afghanistan, Lakhdar Brahimi, in 2001.

Five years after the fall of the Taliban, President Hamid Karzai's government is hampered by rampant corruption, growing insecurity, runaway opium production and widespread discontent over the slow arrival of prosperity.

''There have been huge delays in building basic infrastructure,'' Rubin said. ''Kabul city now has less electricity than it did during Soviet occupation. And no more really than it did when the U.S. came in there.''


bushg screws up afghanistan too


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 10 September 2006 05:02 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

What is being discussed is not the number of casualties over a ten year period, nor even the number of casualties per year.

What is being discussed is the RISK that an individual solider will be killed in action.

That is an important fact, especially for the individual soldiers.


The CBC item says:
quote:
Five of the approximately 18,500 soldiers in the NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) have been killed every week since May, she said.

That's more than twice the level during the battles to control Iraq, Bird calculated.

"The analysis shows that troops are fighting one of the fiercest campaigns since the Bush administration's 'war on terror' began in 2001,"


Statistics based on casualties per thousand tell us nothing about how "fierce" the fighting is.

Canada has lost 32 soldiers in Afghanistan in the last four years. The USA has lost over 2,500 in Iraq in the last three years. The fighting in Iraq, as everybody who has been alive for the past five years knows, has been much more "fierce" than the fighting in Afghanistan.

Citing casualties as a percentage or ratio over total troop strength is meaningless. If NATO had 100 troops in Afghanistan and 20 were killed, there would be a 20% casualty rate (very high). If NATO doubled its fighting force in Afghanistan from the present 18,500 to 37,000, it's unlikely the number of casualties would double as well; that would mean a reduction in the casualty to troop ratio with absolutely no corresponding reduction in the "fierceness" of the fighting, but the "risk" of any given soldier being killed would be reduced.

Evidently the way to reduce the risk of death for individual Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan is to send more soldiers!

Like I said, utter nonsense.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
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posted 10 September 2006 05:43 PM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Spector, don't take every thread as an attack on the Soviet Union. They don't exist any more.

The rate of troops lost is an important datum, even if you would rather talk about something else.

For example, the statistician says that Canadian troops are more likely to die in Afghanistan than U.S. troops are to die in Iraq.

That is important because public opinion probably thinks of Iraq as more dangerous.


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 10 September 2006 05:56 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Public opinion is based on an accurate perception of the Iraq War as being much more "fierce" than the Afghanistan War. You're not going to change that fact by manipulating statistics.

And it's only in your feverish red-baiting brain that the idea could arise that I took this thread as an attack on the Soviet Union.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 10 September 2006 10:36 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Five years after the fall of the Taliban, President Hamid Karzai's government is hampered by rampant corruption, growing insecurity, runaway opium production and widespread discontent over the slow arrival of prosperity.

Ah! The neo-liberal economic long run. As Linda McQuaig said of it and hundreds of millions of poor people: ~~"At least religion has an afterlife to promise the faithful."


quote:
[qb]Kabul city now has less electricity than it did during Soviet occupation. And no more really than it did when the U.S. came in there.''

These war-lording conservative Republicans are no better nation builders than the bloody Vikings were. And at least the fascist Romans built some water and sewer works in the occupied regions. The Soviets were only there ten years, and at least they produced a few doctors and engineers and hung a few traffic lights up around Kabul. By goom!~


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
sgm
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posted 11 September 2006 12:44 AM      Profile for sgm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here come the tanks:
quote:
OTTAWA — The Canadian Forces' main tank unit is racing to prepare 120 troops and 15 Leopard tanks to send to Afghanistan as early as next week, in what would be a major boost in Canadian military capability there, according to a military expert who observed them.

[snip]

"It would be a significant increase in our capability," said retired Major-General Lewis Mackenzie, a former commander of UN peacekeepers in Bosnia. "There's not a lot more boots on the ground at 120 [troops], but there's a lot more combat power because of the 105-millimetre gun and the armoured protection they provide."

"When the infantry, for example, come up against a couple of houses where they would suffer casualties going in and clearing that house of the enemy, even though they would win, it's sort of nice to be able to stand back and turn to the tanker and say, 'Take that house out.'"


I wonder what the Afghan who built 'that house' is supposed to think about such a comment?

Where will s/he sleep in the weeks to come after the house has been surgically 'taken out'?

Under the shelter of Lewis MacKenzie's deep insight into foreign/military affairs, perhaps?

Link.


From: I have welcomed the dawn from the fields of Saskatchewan | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 11 September 2006 01:58 AM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

M Spector:
Citing casualties as a percentage or ratio over total troop strength is meaningless.

Not necessarily, it is a good indicator of what the individual soldier's odds are of being a casualty.

quote:

If NATO had 100 troops in Afghanistan and 20 were killed, there would be a 20% casualty rate (very high). If NATO doubled its fighting force in Afghanistan from the present 18,500 to 37,000, it's unlikely the number of casualties would double as well; ....

That depends on what NATO did with the extra troops. If forces were doubled and the level of operations remained the same then most likely the ratio would go down as the same risk would be spread out amongst more people. However, the total number of casualties may well go up as the environment would become more target rich for the adversaries.

On the other hand, if increased troop levels led to an increased level of operations then ratios may go down, stay about the same or even go up depending on what kind of increases were undertaken.

The casualty ratio is of direct interest to those exposed in Afghanistan as it provides an indicator of one's chances of being a casualty. However, if it is anymore than that, say a matter of national interest and policy decision making, then the government owes it to the public to state what casualty ratio they consider acceptable and what they intend to do to keep it at or below that level, either increase troops or decrease exposure.

On the other hand if the actual number of casualties is of more concern than the ratio, then we need a statement on what number is the maximum number acceptable.

There should be a debate not only on what we hope to achieve in Afghanistan and if such achievement is possible, but on how much we are willing to pay in resources and lives to achieve it.

In one sense our policy on Afghanistan is like buying a mystery grab bag full of who knows what for an indeterminate price to be known later after the bag has been opened and its contents consumed with whatever consequences that may have.

quote:

sgm:
Here come the tanks:

Given the modern state of RPGs and other such weapons and their wide availability tanks may become enhanced target opportunities for the insurgents and death traps for those inside them. It will be interesting to watch how they are deployed.


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 11 September 2006 02:11 AM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Around town. They aren't going anywhare. Too expensive. When I heard that I thought: Porpoganda stunt.
From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Noise
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posted 11 September 2006 09:29 AM      Profile for Noise     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
"When the infantry, for example, come up against a couple of houses where they would suffer casualties going in and clearing that house of the enemy, even though they would win, it's sort of nice to be able to stand back and turn to the tanker and say, 'Take that house out.'"

I agree with the retired general, but why bother with tanks if we're just going to destroy houses? Massive carpet bombing with cluster bombs would be so much easier


From: Protest is Patriotism | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 11 September 2006 10:51 AM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Utter nonsense, of course.
The Soviet Union suffered some 30,000 casualties in Afghanistan.

Actually closer to 60,000 with almost 14,000 fatal, in ten years.

quote:
Canadians are fighting against people with assault rifles and IEDs. It's one of the most one-sided wars in history.

But then American and other coalition forces in Iraq have suffered well over 20,000 casualties against similarly armed (except during the actual invasion) opponents, in just over four years (over 2900 fatal). The ratio of deaths to wounded is less because of better medical care and the use of body armour. It is folly to judge opponents by their equipment.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 11 September 2006 12:31 PM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
This is not our, Canada's, fight, and to maintain the pretense that it is is pure folly . The machinations have been going on for centuries in this region and will for many more is my guess. The origins of this current conflict were created by the U.S. opposition to Soviet occupation in 1979 and have come back to haunt us all, and have proved that no matter how "super" the superpowers think they are, they just don't get it. The sooner we get out of any combat role the better. If we are asked to do real peacekeeping and reconstruction afterwards, fine, but let's do some real thinking and research as to how that would happen in the current context.

i am currently reading the book The Dust of Empire - The Race for Mastery in the Asian Heartland, by Karl E. Meyer, and there are a couple of passages that i think are relevant to this thread topic. I have been waiting for the right one to post them in and i think "quagmire" is the right way to describe this situation.

quote:
Chapter 5:
Afghanistan: In a Dark Defile
pages 135-136:

To fight the Soviets, the CIA provided weapons and funds exceeding $3 billion to the Afghan resistance; after the Russians vacated, U.S. aid dwindled to a pittance. Anger at being treated like discarded mercenaries turned thousands of resistance fighters into easy converts for Islamic jihadists. No American has followed this conversion more closely than Mary Anne Weaver of the New Yorker. In her Portrait of Egypt (1999) she recounts a conversation with Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, the blind Egyptian clergyman jailed for his role in the truck bombing of the World Trade Center. In 1985, Sheik Omar journeyed to Peshawar, where he was driven in a U.S. supplied vehicle to a mujahedin training camp. There he fell under the spell of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. "My strongest emotion was pride," he recalled. "I felt so proud of my religion, so proud of the power that Muslims had. And i knew that Allah would aid these people and this religion , and that Islam would be victorious in the end."

In practice, Weaver found, the CIA helped train and fund what eventually became and international network of highly disciplined Islamic militants, the "Arab Afghans" or the 'Children of Jihad", a new breed of terrorists. "When the Soviet Union left Afghanistan and the CIA closed down its pipeline to the mujahideen," she writes, "Washington left behind tens of thousands of well-trained and well-armed Arab, Asian, and Afghan fighters available for new jihads." One portent was the machine-gun attack in Addis Ababa on Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak during a 1995 state visit. The attempt failed and the putative assassins were caught and executed; they had fought in Afghanistan. Other harbingers the same year were the truck bomb attack on the Egyptian embassy in Islamabad, the first of its kind, killing seventeen, and the car bombing in Riyadh, the Saudi capital, of a U.S. military training center, killing five Americans and wounding forty-the precursor for the still unsolved 1996 bombing of a U.S. military housing complex in the Saudi city of Dhahran, killing 19 and wounding 240 U.S. airmen.

What did Washington's politicians and experts make of this legacy of the covert Afghan strategy? It is hard to say. There was never a real debate, in Congress or in the press, about letting Zia dispense American largess. Nor was there serious discussion of Washington's failure to press for a broad-based transition regime in Kabul, headed by the willing former Afghan King, Mohammad Zahir Shah. The absence of debate and accountability is, in these circumstances, an unavoidable cost of bipartisan foreign policy. Since both Democratic and Republican lawmakers were complicit, neither had any political incentive to reopen the matter.


bold emphasis mine. You could apply the part i bolded to our current old line parties predicament, subsituting Liberal for Democratic and Conservative for Republican.

The Zia referred to is the former military dictator of Pakistan who was a U.S. ally, who died in 1988 with the US ambassador in a mysterious plane explosion. Hekmatyar is the former warlord who was the US's resistance pointman in Afghanistan during the Soviet occupation

The next one is particularly disturbing with its almost perfect parallel to the present day. All one needs to do is subsitute "U.S." for Russia, Russian, or tsarist and it is quite striking.

quote:
Chapter 6:
The Caucasus: A Bedlam of Identity
page 149:

For five centuries, Islam constituted a riddle to which Russia's leaders were unable to find a satisfactory answer. Radically different regimes-imperial, Communist and republican-attempted different strategies for winning over Muslim citizens: tolerant coexistence and generous incentives for assimilation; or forced conversion, slaughter and expulsion. These strategies implied a common assumption of Russian superiority, a reluctance to take Islam seriously and the recurrent suspicion that non-Christians were "ignoble savages and unfaithful subjects," in one tsarist official's phrase. The impression conveyed in popular literature of the nineteenth century, as the American scholar Seymour Becker found, was that Russia's cultural superiority was "so obvious that her Muslim subjects could not help but perceive it, given time, and voluntarily assimilate into the Russian nation." With exceptions, the same condescension tainted the Communist approach.


bold emphasis mine

This book and the one before it "Tournament of Shadows" shown in the link are amazing resources for anyone trying to get their head around the origins of the conflict in the region and the powers of the day that set them up. Canada was not part of any of this, and to me looks like the respectable guy who showed up late to the barfight, picks a side without knowing what is going on, gets a good licking and wonders why nobody thanks him. We should not be there in the role we are there currently. Kudos to Layton to take a stand. Whether it is him or someone else, it needed to be said before more people die needlessly for a cause that is essentially U.S. imperialism.

I have wondered too, where the Russian role in all this is. Why is the U.N. not demanding reparations from the Russians as well as the US to fund the reconstruction of the country? They essentially destroyed the place for 10 full years and now we are reaping what that conflict sowed.

[ 11 September 2006: Message edited by: farnival ]


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Ward
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posted 11 September 2006 12:55 PM      Profile for Ward     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
What was it again, that the Taliban did that made the canucks go over there to kill them?

I thought it was Al Quida that did something.

Wait aminute who are we fighting again Taliban or Al Quida?


From: Scarborough | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 11 September 2006 01:44 PM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
or is it Oceana or Eurasia?
From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Noise
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posted 11 September 2006 01:48 PM      Profile for Noise     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ward - It's Al Qaeda

And for the record, a lil of both merged with other militant groups (drug interests, possibly drug warlords) and a few other Jihadist organizations. Anything that doesn't accept our society and values are better than theirs ^^

[ 11 September 2006: Message edited by: Noise ]


From: Protest is Patriotism | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
Disgusted
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posted 11 September 2006 04:29 PM      Profile for Disgusted        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
In his speech today, our Peerless Leader said "the Taliban is on the run".

I guess all we have to do now is hunt them down, smoke them out, and bring them to justice.


From: Yukon | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 11 September 2006 04:34 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

"the Taliban is on the run"

Did he really make a public statement in Hickese?


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 11 September 2006 08:18 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Hmmm, quagmire eh? Is that the new black tar hash i heard about?
From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 11 September 2006 08:42 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Canada sending 15 tanks, 120 more troops

quote:
The Canadian Forces' main tank unit is racing to prepare 120 troops and 15 Leopard tanks to send to Afghanistan as early as next week, in what would be a major boost in Canadian military capability there, according to a military expert who observed them. [...]

"Clearly there are other countries, not Canada, but other countries, who can do more," Foreign Affairs Minister Peter Mackay said yesterday in an interview on the CTV television program Question Period. [...]

"It would be a significant increase in our capability," said retired Major-General Lewis Mackenzie, a former commander of UN peacekeepers in Bosnia. "There's not a lot more boots on the ground at 120 [troops], but there's a lot more combat power because of the 105-millimetre gun and the armoured protection they provide."

"When the infantry, for example, come up against a couple of houses where they would suffer casualties going in and clearing that house of the enemy, even though they would win, it's sort of nice to be able to stand back and turn to the tanker and say, 'Take that house out.' "



From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 11 September 2006 09:06 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I can hear the ol' man rolling over in his grave and saying, "Lovely, just #ucking lovely. Son, fcs, stay the hell out of the army"
From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
a lonely worker
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posted 11 September 2006 10:11 PM      Profile for a lonely worker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'm ex-forces and come from a family where every male served in both peace and war.

I've already told both of our kids that I never want to see them in a uniform as I learned the hard way the futility of imperialism.


From: Anywhere that annoys neo-lib tools | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
siren
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posted 11 September 2006 10:38 PM      Profile for siren     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Disgusted:
In his speech today, our Peerless Leader said "the Taliban is on the run".

I guess all we have to do now is hunt them down, smoke them out, and bring them to justice.


Hmm. CBC didn't see fit to carry that clip of "hickese" (thanks, Jerry West).

Whomever is managing Harper is either from the Bush administration or a fond admirer of their propaganda. Harpercrite did the Bush photo op with supporters behind him [in this case 9/11 widows and military wives (husbands?)]. Same Bush-like obvious following of the teleprompter.

To me it looked dreadfully fake and a scaled down version of Bush's "news" sound bites. I don't know if Canadians will take to this blatant Potemkin village style of government the way many Americans seem to.

I truly wish Harpercrite would stop abusing our troops (and their kin) so maliciously.


From: Of course we could have world peace! But where would be the profit in that? | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
Disgusted
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posted 12 September 2006 11:43 AM      Profile for Disgusted        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here's a link to a Toronto Star column about SH's speech and his "the Taliban are on the run" fantasy:

http://tinyurl.com/eet86

edited by moderator for sidescroll

[ 13 September 2006: Message edited by: oldgoat ]


From: Yukon | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 September 2006 05:49 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Jerry West:

Given the modern state of RPGs and other such weapons and their wide availability tanks may become enhanced target opportunities for the insurgents and death traps for those inside them. It will be interesting to watch how they are deployed.


I remember dad saying they were always afraid of taking a bazooka hit in the side. He said the darn things would burn a hole through the armour of a Sherman("Ronson lighters"), drop inside and explode. Those and Panzer shells could turn it into a pretty bad day. I hope the new tanks have thicker armour. And better yet, just get them the hell home where they belong.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 12 September 2006 05:52 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
RPG's and light missiles have been around for a while - don't the Canadian Force's tanks have any defence against these?
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 12 September 2006 06:05 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Think of it this way. The Vietnamese did not have these in any great numbers at least.

Now, while it is true that sophisticated weapons systems, such as tanks, helicopters, airplanes, and the like have all evolved substantially in the last 30 years, it is also true that light weapons have also advanced. The case might be made that the gap in effectivenss between the weapons available to guerilla armies, and those available to conventional armies, may even have decreased over the last 30 years.

One thing which is important is cost.

People don't often think about this as afactor in warfare, but one fundamental aspect of war is how it exists as a competition between econmoies, so while the Talibs may not be wealthy in the way we are, if they can take out a 2,000,000 piece of hardware for the cost of $3500, they can be considered to have a good day.

In the end this will likely be a contest of who is willing to put the most resources into play, against the backdrop of our available resources, and whether or not we feel the true economic cost of adventure is worth the effort.

My guess is that the Taliban have no such constraint and will bet all on this war, while we will cop out sooner or later should it persist, just because we don't want to substantially damage our economy.


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 September 2006 06:10 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I have no idea. Anyone else ?.

Personally, I think the army should be brought home to defend Canada's borders in placing the accent on "Defence". Aren't those crazy Dane's supposed to be cruising through our waters with invasion as their game plan?. Or is it Iceland who wants a piece of us ?. And you never know when the Germans will bomb Pearl Harbor again.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
siren
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posted 12 September 2006 07:35 PM      Profile for siren     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Disgusted, could you please tiny url or something your Toronto Star link? It's causing huge sidescroll.

Afghan mission, 9/11 linked
`Canada acted when UN asked'
PM meets family of victims, troops


From: Of course we could have world peace! But where would be the profit in that? | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
a lonely worker
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posted 12 September 2006 07:45 PM      Profile for a lonely worker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Boom Boom:

quote:
RPG's and light missiles have been around for a while - don't the Canadian Force's tanks have any defence against these?

Our tanks have been considerably upgraded and most rpg's and light missiles will do little damage. Hezbollah's anti-tank missiles are in a league of their own.

So militarily these tanks will be quite dominant. But here's the real issue: this is supposed to be a "humanitarian" mission and the myth goes that
we're doing it for the kiddies and women.

Obviously tanks aren't very good at building schools and it's clear that these leopards will only cause more bloodshed creating more pissed off people.

Aside from propaganda purposes and giving the soldiers a false sense of security, their deployment is doomed to fail because the elements will grind them down whilst the Afghans bide their time.

On the plus side our government will be able to buy more "infuence" from Washington when these tanks will need replacing due to the mechanical strain. So the arms industry wins either way - which is all that matters to these warmongers.


From: Anywhere that annoys neo-lib tools | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 September 2006 08:09 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by a lonely worker:
Boom Boom:

Obviously tanks aren't very good at building schools and it's clear that these leopards will only cause more bloodshed creating more pissed off people.


Yes, I would think that roads, schools, hospitals, medicine and food are necessary for an outbreak of peace. Afghani youth need to be able to find security and prosperity outside the draw of the Taliban.

quote:
On the plus side our government will be able to buy more "infuence" from Washington when these tanks will need replacing due to the mechanical strain. So the arms industry wins either way - which is all that matters to these warmongers.

It's why the Yanks fight and our Ottawa lap dogs bark a little bark. Our peace-loving Liberals spent $13 billion on military in 2004, and we're still near the bottom of the barrel with child poverty and 1.4 million Canadian children living anywhere below the poverty line. If the weapons are that good, then the two old line parties should shove them up their arses - a good thing won't hurt.

[ 12 September 2006: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
sgm
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posted 13 September 2006 08:08 AM      Profile for sgm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
KABUL If the past five years of increasingly violent fighting in Afghanistan has proved anything, it is this: The Taliban and their allies cannot be beaten by military means alone.

Yet it's not solely about "winning hearts and minds," either. Countering an insurgency requires a mix of military pressure, institution-building, reconstruction and development and international aid. But ultimately, the key to defeating it is political accommodation.

In Afghanistan, that means talking to the Taliban.
More 'appeasement' from that crazy Jack Layton?

Nope, the assessment of a former ISAF adviser.

One quick aside on 'hearts and minds': last night I was watching Robert S. McNamara in the documentary 'Fog of War.' They played a Vietnam-era clip of McNamara saying there was no pure military solution in Vietnam, and that 'we' had to win 'hearts and minds,' but couldn't do so until 'we' had provided 'security' to the people of the country.

Plus ca change, eh?


From: I have welcomed the dawn from the fields of Saskatchewan | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 13 September 2006 09:38 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I think there will be a shortage of traffic lights, doctors and basic human rights in Kabul twenty years from now. God help them.
From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
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posted 13 September 2006 09:38 AM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
As we all know, they will be talking to the Taleban eventually. So Layton's big crime was that he said so before the Authorities permit this.

Yes, the Taleban are a bunch of rotten bastards. So, too are the people in charge of Iran.

But it's just dandy to discuss issues with the latter, because George Bush says so, and is doing it right now.

It's okay to negotiate with North Korea, too.

And it was fine to negotiate with Saddam Hussein. Donald Rumsfeld had a nice time in Iraq, discussing many outstanding issues with him.

But it is not allowed to negotiate anything with the Taleban. Yet.

Because they are cruel and bad.


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 13 September 2006 09:52 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I think the shadow government in Warshington will be creating another post-Shah Iran with Afghanistan, whether accidentally on purpose or by design. That's if and when the theocratic zealots are able to de-string a puppet in Kabul and install a fundamentalist Ayatollah. The Pentagon and CIA have all the bases covered in preventing secular socialist thought from taking root in Afghanistan.

As long as the Afghani people and social democracy are separated, then Warshington's general goal in Afghanistan will have been achieved. It takes years of nation-building to achieve it, and this is clearly not on the agenda for Afghanistan. Chaos and religious fundamentalism have been forced on Afghanistan and Pakistan by the west in turning back the clock on a people's revolution by a hundred years. Of course, the shadow government is bankrupting America and witholding social democracy from their own people in the name of empire maintenance and preventing domino effect on that side of the planet. In the meantime, a socialist resurgence is happening in their own backyard.

They can always round up a coalition of idiots among the democratic capitalist third world and carpet bomb on trumped up charges of something or other at the UN. God help them.

[ 13 September 2006: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 13 September 2006 11:26 AM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by a lonely worker:
Boom Boom:

Our tanks have been considerably upgraded and most rpg's and light missiles will do little damage. Hezbollah's anti-tank missiles are in a league of their own.

So militarily these tanks will be quite dominant. But here's the real issue: this is supposed to be a "humanitarian" mission and the myth goes that
we're doing it for the kiddies and women.

Obviously tanks aren't very good at building schools and it's clear that these leopards will only cause more bloodshed creating more pissed off people.

Aside from propaganda purposes and giving the soldiers a false sense of security, their deployment is doomed to fail because the elements will grind them down whilst the Afghans bide their time.

On the plus side our government will be able to buy more "infuence" from Washington when these tanks will need replacing due to the mechanical strain. So the arms industry wins either way - which is all that matters to these warmongers.


I really can't see tanks beign any use here at all. Tanks, in their most useful formulation add extra punch when trying to break an enemy line, and then (theoretically) exploit that opening. The Taliban don't have any front line, so what are they good for?

Plus this is a highly amorphous military situation, with engagemtns fought scatered hither and thither of often inhospitable terrain. Are they actually going to drive these buggers to each an every engagement? Don't they have to be transported to the front?

At best these tanks will end up as point vehicle on convoy duty (slows everything down of course) or be used as static reinforced artillery posts in fixed positions.

Waste of money and time.

Unless of course the buzz is that there might be action on the Iranian border, in which case they might serve some purpose.


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Lard Tunderin' Jeezus
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posted 13 September 2006 12:26 PM      Profile for Lard Tunderin' Jeezus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
NATO countries say no to further escalation of hostilities in Afghanistan
From: ... | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 13 September 2006 04:16 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

I really can't see tanks beign any use here at all. Tanks, in their most useful formulation add extra punch when trying to break an enemy line, and then (theoretically) exploit that opening. The Taliban don't have any front line, so what are they good for?

In this environment tanks provide a rapidly maneuverable, mobile form of short range artillery that when using direct fire is a bit more accurate than the other mobile short range artillery, the mortar.

Of course tanks are more vulnerable to IEDs and rockets if for no other reason than they have prime target written all over them.

One must keep in mind that there are more nations involved in the mess in Afghanistan on both sides than those who actually have troops there. China and Russia are two that come to mind. And you can bet that if rockets exist that can smoke a Leopard tank they will appear in the Taliban inventory when those who can supply them decide that it is in their interest to do so.

The real fight in Afghanistan has less to do with the Taliban than it does with the broader economic struggle between the US and western corporations on one side and the economic interests of Russia and China and others on several other sides that would like to see the US taken down a few pegs.


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 13 September 2006 05:06 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I agree with that generally however:

quote:
Originally posted by Jerry West:

In this environment tanks provide a rapidly maneuverable, mobile form of short range artillery that when using direct fire is a bit more accurate than the other mobile short range artillery, the mortar.


If they are in the general region of combat. I am not talking about in a tactical situation, I am talking about their operational utility. In highly fluid hit and run guerilla situations, I hardly think the Afghans are going to be waiting around for us to deploy all our best gear so that we can smash em up.

In fact tanks will probably decrease operational mobility, not increase it.

Multi-wheeled all terrain APC's are far better match for the Afghan environment, in my view. Faster, less gas, less road bound, etc. etc.

ETA: and it turns out as I said earlier:

quote:
On September 9, 2006 the Ottawa Citizen [2] reported that up to twenty Leopard C2 tanks with 300 personnel were being sent to Afghanistan, by way of ship to arrive in the following month. There the Leopard C2s will be used for convoy protection and to come to the aid of Canada's Provincial Reconstruction Teams and other organizations equipped with lighter vehicles that have come under attack

wikipedia It doesn't sound like they even intend to use them to ehnhance mobile offensive capability.

[ 13 September 2006: Message edited by: Cueball ]


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 13 September 2006 05:33 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

If they are in the general region of combat. I am not talking about in a tactical situation, I am talking about their operational utility.

I think you may be assuming tanks as a center piece of operation planning. I assume that they will be utilities to be employed in reponse to situational needs.

I can see positive ways for utilizing tanks here.

However:

quote:

Multi-wheeled all terrain APC's are far better match for the Afghan environment, in my view. Faster, less gas, less road bound, etc. etc.

I agree, and as a commander given a choice between millions of dollars worth of tanks or millions of dollars worth of some other item of my choice to supplement my bag of tricks, tanks would not be it. Their uses are too limited for this kind of warfare.

Afghanistan is not the Fulda Gap.


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 13 September 2006 05:44 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Totally.

I think they are the centerpiece of operational propoganda.

Most people have been so innundated in the wonders of modern armoured warfare and stories of Rommel, that they are immediatly awed by the prospect of sending in tanks.

It is analagous to sending in the cavalry in many peoples minds.

Frankly, spending huge amounts of money to send nearly useless weapons to Afghanistan, for propoganda purposes, is indicative of exactly the kind of mentality that is killing Canadian soldiers.

[ 13 September 2006: Message edited by: Cueball ]


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Tiff
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posted 13 September 2006 09:02 PM      Profile for Tiff     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Cueball:

Frankly, spending huge amounts of money to send nearly useless weapons to Afghanistan, for propoganda purposes, is indicative of exactly the kind of mentality that is killing Canadian soldiers.

They could be used to scout out ahead, because they do go pretty fast considering, and if there is an IED it will take the hit instead of the light infantry vehicles. That's a better use for them instead of moth-balling them. Use them on kamikaze missions and hope the armour is thick enough. For what the Taliban have been using in roadside attacks, the explosives used in their IED's shouldn't penetrate the skin. We hope...

[ 13 September 2006: Message edited by: Tiff ]


From: Canada | Registered: Sep 2006  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 13 September 2006 09:28 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Those tanks go 60 kph. APC's go 100 kph. These tanks were designed to fight Soviet heavy armour in Germany, not chase town small packs of guerillas in the mountains.
From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
ebunny
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posted 13 September 2006 09:41 PM      Profile for ebunny        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Cueball:
Those tanks go 60 kph. APC's go 100 kph. These tanks were designed to fight Soviet heavy armour in Germany, not chase town small packs of guerillas in the mountains.

That's how fast they go on Roads -- not off roads which is what they would most likely be doing.

The tanks are very impressive to be around. They shake the very ground you are on. Down side is that the maintnance for tanks is twice as much as the LAV III. And the Leopards are from the 1970's. Chances are troops are going to be dealing with a lot of broken tanks in Afghanistan. And once again you will see a fast-tracked aquisition for new vehicles within a year.


From: Ottawa | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 13 September 2006 09:54 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Precisely, and on rough terrain the APC are better, and also can still operate even if they lose two or three wheels. Once the tanks lose a track you have a bunch of targets struggling around the tank waiting to get sniped.
From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 13 September 2006 11:40 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Afghanistan is not the Fulda Gap

No, it isn't. The hard abrasive environment of Afghanistan will wear out undercarriage very quickly.

Changing a bogie wheel or idler isn't as difficult as changing a track but it will eat up spares quickly.

Armour operates in a combined arms environment with mechanised infantry,indirect fire support and close air.

It is doubtful that a linear engagement such as Panjwai will occur again.The Taliban are very good at adapting their tactics,making the requirement for MBTs less likely.

While MBTs are extremely effective in a combined arms offensive,without supporting infantry,they are vulnerable to insurgent attack.

All in all,the deployment of MBTs will very likely not happen. Not only logistics,cost,political liability but also fielding a cohesive armoured squadron with three troops and a sqn headquarters element will be difficult for an understrength unit such as LdSH to deploy given their other taskings.


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 14 September 2006 12:45 AM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
This discussion makes one wonder where the other parties military critics are with these concerns?
From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 14 September 2006 04:44 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

Tiff:
They could be used to scout out ahead, because they do go pretty fast considering, and if there is an IED it will take the hit instead of the light infantry vehicles.

A. IEDs will get bigger
B. In columns IEDs will be detonated after the tank has passed over

Want to bet?


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Disgusted
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posted 14 September 2006 05:42 PM      Profile for Disgusted        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I apologize for the side scroll. I blame my ignorance of proper url posting, and will endeavour to learn how to do it the right way!
From: Yukon | Registered: Mar 2006  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 14 September 2006 06:35 PM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Jerry West:
I can see positive ways for utilizing tanks here.

what the fuck? how can tanks anywhere be a positive thing or be used in a positive way. rolling death machines.

from the post above on this thread has started to take on the feel of freakin' professional sports colour commentary.

canada has no business there in a combat role, period. as i said way earlier, we are in way over our heads in a conflict that is hundreds of years old.

debating the merits of leopard tanks in battle situations is just sick.


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 14 September 2006 06:50 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
debating the merits of leopard tanks in battle situations is just sick.


And ignoring the political and military implications of this ALLEGED deployment is...?

Hey! How bout sticking our fingers in our ears and repeating LALALALA really loud instead? Or...a rousing rendition of kumbayah


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 14 September 2006 06:51 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by farnival:

what the fuck? how can tanks anywhere be a positive thing or be used in a positive way. rolling death machines.


Jerry West is a veteran of the VietNam war. I think he's speaking from experience. And Jerry is against Canada's military presence in Afghanistan and war in general, it I think it's safe to say.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 14 September 2006 06:59 PM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Fidel:

Jerry West is a veteran of the VietNam war. I think he's speaking from experience. And Jerry is against Canada's military presence in Afghanistan and war in general, it I think it's safe to say.



clearly he has military knowlege as do the others posting the half time show observations. my comment was not to besmirch anyone's particular knowlege of military strategy or manoevers, but an observation that military equipment such as tanks are killing machines, pure and simple, and if they show up somewhere, clearly things are not positive in any way.

and jester, i'm sorry, i couldn't hear you over the crunching sound of my granola. alleged my ass. the only thing alleged in this whole fiasco is the fiction that we are rebuilding the country. CANADA OUT NOW.


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 14 September 2006 07:00 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by farnival:

debating the merits of leopard tanks in battle situations is just sick.

C'mon, farnival, we're debating the best way of killing the scumbags while saving the guys with the white hats. It's just plain ole patriotism.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 14 September 2006 07:11 PM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

C'mon, farnival, we're debating the best way of killing the scumbags while saving the guys with the white hats. It's just plain ole patriotism.



good point unionist. now, would those white hats be pith helmets? Britain, the U.S. and the Russians have spent the last 300 years beating the crap out of this country and they should be barred from having any physical presence, but forced to pay for the entire peacekeeping force and reconstruction tab. For us to jump on that imperialist bandwagon will only bring us trouble in the future. We had an opportunity at the begining to not be stained by being associated with the U.S. military, and we've blown it now. We're agressors to the locals...oops, i mean Taliban...er, Al-Qaeda...no wait...farmers.....ah right, Afghanis, and things are only going to get worse until we end this fiction that we are a combat force that can "win". there is no winning. only dead locals and dead soldiers. such a waste.


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 14 September 2006 07:29 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by farnival:


good point unionist. now, would those white hats be pith helmets? Britain, the U.S. and the Russians have spent the last 300 years beating the crap out of this country and they should be barred from having any physical presence, but forced to pay for the entire peacekeeping force and reconstruction tab.


Outside of Germany and Japan since WWII, where in the world has the west spent any real money on nation building or paid war reparations ?. The U.S. spent $6 billion dollars on operation cyclone(and some estimates are higher) with the Saudi's and Brits contributing significant amounts of money and aid themselves. An illegit militia government under General Zia also aided and abetted the Talibanization of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Several of us are curious as to what happens to Afghanistan in the event that NATO does abandon the mess over there. And who could blame people in NATO countries for not wanting to be a part of it?.

What would American's expect the rest of the world to do in the aftermath event that the then Soviets had shovelled several billion dollars toward the aiding of and weaponization of KKK and extremist right-wing militia groups in the U.S. ? - the same groups of which rarely make the war on terror news and yet are still a going concern for American law enforcement agencies within the U.S. today.

[ 14 September 2006: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 14 September 2006 08:02 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Britain, the U.S. and the Russians have spent the last 300 years beating the crap out of this country

300 years? Considerably less than 200 actually.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 14 September 2006 08:17 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Policywonk:

300 years? Considerably less than 200 actually.


Correct - but with the British having lost all three Anglo-Afghan wars, I'll bet it felt like about 2000 years.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Bubbles
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posted 14 September 2006 08:32 PM      Profile for Bubbles        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Nah, war time is at double time at least. That makes it about 400 years, that means they have now about 40 years vacation time coming to them, payed for by the 'Imperial warlords'.
From: somewhere | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 14 September 2006 09:03 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

Fidel:
And Jerry is against Canada's military presence in Afghanistan....

I guess he missed all of the editorials on the front page over the past five years.

quote:

farnival:
debating the merits of leopard tanks in battle situations is just sick.

Not if you want to impeach the credibility of the government that deployed them.


quote:

Fidel:
Outside of Germany and Japan since WWII, where in the world has the west spent any real money on nation building or paid war reparations ?.

Germany and Japan were direct beneficaries of the Korean War. Their redevelopment was speeded up to get their factories back into production for war materials.

quote:

farnival:
how can tanks anywhere be a positive thing or be used in a positive way.

Depends on your point of reference, but then I didn't say that tanks were a positive thing, I did say that there were some positive uses for them and there are within a certain framework. Of course the fact that there might be some positive uses for tanks in a military sense does not validate the military mission, which of course is not a positive thing for achieving a progressive society in Afghanistan.


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 14 September 2006 09:38 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I think it was pretty clear that the discussion established that the deployment was primarily for political propoganda purposes. Considering such thing is very valuable when assessing a governments true motives.

And, yes, I care about Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan, and it bothers me that aside from the fact that they should not be there in the first place, they are being given equipment of dubious value, apparnently for no other purpose than to reinforce the strategic political propoganda situation at home, and if anything summarizes this war it is this deployment: in summary the whole mission is about scoring political points, and has very little to do with achieving the stated objectives of the mission.

On and off, we have had Canadian soliders appear on this board, and it is clear that many of them truly believe in the stated mission goals, it is sad that they are almost certainly having to face the fact that the government that sent them there does not.

And in this last category this means that a lot young men and women, who are people who have strong values and beliefs in democracy, womens rights, and other things that we all here believe, and whom in some respects are willing to lay down there lives for these things and as such represent some of the best of what we are, and are now going to return very disillusioned. This is true however much they were misguided in the belief that this mission might serve those purposes.

[ 14 September 2006: Message edited by: Cueball ]


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 September 2006 07:30 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
QUEBEC CITY - Malalai Joya, the youngest member of the Afghan National Assembly, today appeared at the NDP Federal Convention in Quebec City supporting Jack Layton and the NDP's criticism of the NATO-led mission in southern Afghanistan. ...
Joya expressed her sorrow for the deaths of Canadian soldiers, and voiced her support for Jack Layton and the NDP as they call for the withdrawal of Canadian troops from Afghanistan. ...

"I think that if Canada really wants to help Afghan people and bring positive changes, they must act independently, rather than becoming a tool for implementing the policies of the US government



From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Proaxiom
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posted 15 September 2006 07:43 AM      Profile for Proaxiom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Not necessarily, it is a good indicator of what the individual soldier's odds are of being a casualty.

M Spector is absolutely right on this one. Using the above definition of risk, you could send 20,000 more troops to Afghanistan, sit them in basements in Kabul with stashes of opium and porno doing absolutely nothing, and NATO would have effectively cut its risk in half.

Doesn't strike me as a very useful definition.


From: East of the Sun, West of the Moon | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 15 September 2006 08:27 AM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Policywonk:

300 years? Considerably less than 200 actually.


what i was referring to was a collective involvement. and yes it was less than 300 years, but the various shahs and emirs in Afghanistan/Persia were under the influence of Russian patrons since the mid to late 1700's, then the British in the early 1800's who subsequently were drummed out three times. The Russians returned in our time in 1979 formally but were fully involved in supporting the communist govt in Kabul prior to that (the Russians maintain they were "invited" in '79 by the Kabul govt.). When they pooped the bed, primarily due to the funding by the CIA of mujahedin forces based in southern Afghanistan and the NorthWestern Frontier province in Pakistan, whose money was funnelled through the previously mentioned Zia regime in Islamabad, the U.S. are now eating the shit sandwich they made.

so, if 40 or so years is a "considerable" amount of time, then i stand corrected and will amend that to "over 200 years".

quote:
Originally posted by Fidel:

...Several of us are curious as to what happens to Afghanistan in the event that NATO does abandon the mess over there. And who could blame people in NATO countries for not wanting to be a part of it?...

this is an absolutely valid thing to be curious about Fidel. i read this morning a quote from Layton in NOW Magazine regarding this, and his expanding on the convention call to withdraw....

quote:
..."We don't have a plan after we leave," Nova Scotia MP Peter Stoffer tells me later. "We need to consult with experts on how to do this. It's one thing to say we want peace. What do we tell NATO, the UN and the Afghan people?"

It's a question I put to Layton as he takes a rare coffee break later in the afternoon. He insists there is a plan. "We've got to notify our [NATO] partners in [southern Afghanistan] and then work with NATO on a road map, a balanced intervention that focuses on human rights, reconstruction, democracy and diplomacy. It is a very complex process," he says.

"Security? Yes, but it won't be the search-and-destroy kind."...


in my opinion, Stoffer is being a bit silly here. Of course you have to use your head and intelligence to withdraw troops you have committed in a certain context. That context currently is as Layton said "search-and-destroy". This is not going to solve anything. You have military commanders from NATO saying it's not working, Afghan army and police in the southern provinces saying it's not working, and NATO/Canadian forces plus Pakistan trying to or already having started negotiations with the Taliban forces and allied fighters. The fact that the "Taliban" are local Pashtuns and have lived there for ages and have never been defeated is precisely the reason the Karzai govt. in Kabul invited these "warlords" to be part of the government. That they are there has been loudly pointed out by Malalai Joya, the young Afghan woman elected to the parliament and then basically targetted for assasination for doing it.

The politics and reality in Afghanistan are complicated and dangerous. They will not and have never been solved by forward-school style combat intervention. Negotiation with all parties and properly funded security apparatuses and reconstruction of roads, schools, hospitals, sewer and water infrastructure will be the only way to succeed. This does not preclude Canadian Forces from doing just that under a peacekeeping mandate, after a withdrawal from combat duties. No one is blaming the Germans for taking that position. Now, before we get into semanitcs, i am well aware that peacekeeping is combat too. but the context is different. Right now we are creating the impression we are extensions of the U.S. military and will be, in the end, just as hated by the locals, who will turn to the Taliban to turf us out, much the same as the Lebanese have turned to Hezbollah, and the Palestinians to Hamas.

might in this case is clearly not right. lets use our brains to figure this out. using guns and bombs exclusively is an abdication of intelligence.


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 15 September 2006 08:47 AM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
expanding on the reparations comment i made earlier, i occured to me that it might be a good idea, under the recently adopted UN policy of "Responsibility to Protect" that Canada had a large hand in crafting, to add a prohibition of physical participation on nations or parties that contributed to the situation being intervened on, but force those parties to pay for the operations, whatever they may be, with no say in how the money is spent. This would preclude the US for example, directing aid money to "security" operations and private schools, and to thier own war-profiteer corporations.

if this was the situation after the Soviet pullout in 1988, perhaps the civil war could have been avoided and the Taliban would have never achieved governing status with thier draconian world and human rights viewpoint.

this is an idea for discussion and expansion of course, as i'm sure i'll be able to drive an aformentioned leopard tank through the holes that will inevitably be shot through this idea.

[ 15 September 2006: Message edited by: farnival ]


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 10:01 AM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
and jester, i'm sorry, i couldn't hear you over the crunching sound of my granola. alleged my ass. the only thing alleged in this whole fiasco is the fiction that we are rebuilding the country. CANADA OUT NOW.


Farnival: ALLEGED is purely my opinion. I think that the alleged deployment is a red herring thrown out to deflect criticism of other areas of the mission.

There really is no tactical reason for deploying MBT armour to Afghanistan.

A combined arms role is unlikely to occur again as the Taliban adapt tactically to the Canadian Panjwai offensive.

As force protection,either convoy or PRT,MBTs are not the solution to the threat assessment.

The only answer is that this alleged deployment is a political ploy to advance Canada's stature with NATO and especially the genius's administration.

As Canada has previously decided that the Leopard MBT is superfluous to today's tactical environment,the reality is that of the three armour regiments in the regular force,only LdSH has any MBT capabilityin the form of A and B sqns.

These sqns compose a unit strength of 60-70 members each. Add a headquarters component for vehicle and weapons techs,assuming that the existing Kandahar force will provide logistical support and it becomes apparent that the deployment will be a stretch.

Then,factor in existing postings for individuals in LdSH to schools,support missions,personal leave etc and the existing manpower diminishes.

Then,assess the remainder for current deployment status ie: Cultural sensitivity training,current mission roe,current combined arms battle school qualification etc.

Each member of the existing Kandahar rotations spends 6 months training for their specific deployment.How can CF deploy a MBT squadron on the spur of the moment given their own standards for deployment?

I think this is a red herring for critics to focus on while the government expedites an advance deployment of components of the R22 battlegroup.


ETA: Well, I'm wrong. CBC just announced that DND has stated that a squadron of Leopard MBTs from LdSH and a company of R22 are deploying to Afghanistan.

Hmmm...It was much easier to second guess the Liberal squishes than the resolute neo-neanderthals.

Politics and re-election manoevres be damned,man the breach!

Without regard for the propriety of his decisions,it is so novel to have a Prime Minister who is decisive,rather than cravenly governing by deferring to the whims of fortune.

[ 15 September 2006: Message edited by: jester ]


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 10:40 AM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

C'mon, farnival, we're debating the best way of killing the scumbags while saving the guys with the white hats. It's just plain ole patriotism.


Absolutely. Its not patriotism,rather it is putting into practice the tactical training each battlegroup has received.

The Canadian military will attempt to utilise every tactic.Colonel Omer Lavoie,CO of the RCR BG prosecuted a very careful,slow offensive that made allowances for Taliban escape routes.The intent was to achieve the objective with minimal casualties,rather than a risky attempt to crush the Taliban dug in in Pashmul.

Contrast this with the Brit Airborne tactics in Helmand,where light infantry charges in and slugs it out with the Taliban.The Brits have expended in excess of 400,000 rounds of small arms ammunition and usually end up surrounded.needing rescue.

The Taliban love these tactics.If it were not for air superiority,the Brits would be chewed up.

If NATO follows through on its promises of reparations and aid in Panjwai and does commit to garrisoning the area,the Taliban may well decide to find easier pickings to the west.

There is news that Taliban attacks on police detachments are occurring in the far west,close to the Iranian border.

Collectively,the west has expended 82 billion on military activities and only 700 million ( amounts unsupported) on aid and reconstruction.

The canard that security precedes aid is a military invention that allows them to focus on offensive operations rather than the integrated civil assistance which relegates the military to a force protection role.


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 15 September 2006 04:55 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by farnival:
...it occured to me that it might be a good idea, under the recently adopted UN policy of "Responsibility to Protect" that Canada had a large hand in crafting, to add a prohibition of physical participation on nations or parties that contributed to the situation being intervened on, but force those parties to pay for the operations, whatever they may be, with no say in how the money is spent. This would preclude the US for example, directing aid money to "security" operations and private schools, and to thier own war-profiteer corporations.
Interestingly, Human Rights Watch, the darling of upper middle class liberals, which has been a big supporter of the Responsibility to Protect (another name for “humanitarian war”) concept, expressly rejects your contention:
quote:
...[W]e are aware of, but reject, the argument that past U.S. complicity in Iraqi repression should preclude U.S. intervention in Iraq on humanitarian grounds. This argument is built on the U.S. government’s sordid record in Iraq in the 1980s and 1990s....However, we would not deny relief to, say, the potential victims of genocide simply because the proposed intervener had dirty hands in the past.
Source: Kenneth Roth, executive director of HRW, in an article in an anthology called Human Rights in the “War on Terror”, 2005, Cambridge University Press.

In fairness to Roth it should be noted that these remarks are taken out of the context of the article, in which he argues that the war in Iraq cannot be justified on humanitarian grounds. While making his case, he pauses to point out that he expressly does not rely on the “dirty hands” argument.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 08:43 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Spector,your views on R2P?

Given that the world is not a perfect place;that there are those who will take advantage of others, given that we are too closely tied to the American perspective,what should Canada's foreign policy focus on?


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 15 September 2006 09:05 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
FYI:

Better paid, better armed, better connected - Taliban rise again

Kandahar under threat, war raging in two provinces and an isolated president. So what went wrong?....

Link to article


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Bubbles
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posted 15 September 2006 09:50 PM      Profile for Bubbles        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
farnival
quote:
might in this case is clearly not right. lets use our brains to figure this out. using guns and bombs exclusively is an abdication of intelligence.

I totally agree. Bombs and guns lead to alienation rather then community.

I like to suggest that we start trading with the Afghans as a way out of this Quagmire. The trouble is that the Afghans seem to have little to offer to trade with in a conventional sence. Opium seems to be the easiest available item for the Afghans to produce. If opium was the currentcy they, the Afghans , would have the means to create their own wealth, just like we managed to do here with sea shell and gold, to name two examples. Since we generally do not tend to consume our currency it might also discourage the use of opium as a drug. And imagine what it would do to the banks if we were to use opium nickels and dimes as our currency. They would not be in charge of the currency production anymore.

Would that get us out of the quagmire?


From: somewhere | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 September 2006 09:53 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Good article, Jerry.

quote:
Poverty also fuels the fighting. Several elders said the Taliban was offering upwards of 20,000 rupees (£180) a month to local unemployed men. Western officials are beginning to scrutinise the source of the funds.

Mr Khan told the Guardian the militants have bigger guns and more fighters. They have powerful friends. Several times he had collared Taliban fighters only to discover days later they had been released following a call from a powerful politician or influential tribal leader. They also have surprising amounts of money.

Last year, he said, he captured two insurgents, "one of them alive". Mr Khan asked him why he was fighting. The man replied: "You are being paid 5,000 Afghanis (£54). I am making 20,000 Pakistani rupees. So now you tell me why you are fighting."


20K Pakistani Rupees ~~ $370 Crappy Tire Money

5000 Afghanis ~~ $111 Canadian or more than three times less than the Taliban are paying its "employees"


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 09:55 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Anyone who hides out on the west coast is an interesting character.

Mostly,they stick to fishing,guns and being weird unto themselves.

With respect Jerry,why do you choose Gold River rather than The Big Smoke to pursue your destiny?


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Erik Redburn
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posted 15 September 2006 09:59 PM      Profile for Erik Redburn     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Fishing's probably better...
From: Broke but not bent. | Registered: Feb 2004  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 10:24 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Afghans will appreciate an export market for their products.
From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 15 September 2006 10:30 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Afghanistan body count raises skepticism

quote:
"If they kill that many, the Taliban must have thousands of fighters on that front," said Mohammed Arbil, a former Northern Alliance commander. In the recent past, Taliban units have been described in terms of dozens or hundreds at most.

[SNIP]

The inability of journalists to reach the area has made it virtually impossible to check the figures.

Hundreds of families displaced from the war zone, in the Panjwayi district, are also in the dark, and don't even know if their homes are still standing.




From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 15 September 2006 10:35 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

why do you choose Gold River rather than The Big Smoke to pursue your destiny?

The fishing is definitely better.

The air is clean.

The tap water is pristine and untreated.

Major criminal activity is grafitti writing

Traffic congestion is two cars or more within 100 yard of the same intersection

And this farm boy spent enough years in smokey cities for a life time.

If you have a high speed connection you can get a taste of the region by checking out the last edition (6+mb pdf) here:

The Record


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 10:39 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

[ 16 September 2006: Message edited by: jester ]


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 10:40 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Jerry West:

The fishing is definitely better.

The air is clean.

The tap water is pristine and untreated.

Major criminal activity is grafitti writing

Traffic congestion is two cars or more within 100 yard of the same intersection

And this farm boy spent enough years in smokey cities for a life time.

If you have a high speed connection you can get a taste of the region by checking out the last edition (6+mb pdf) here:

The Record



From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 15 September 2006 10:45 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
PS:

There are a few local photos here:

Photo page

They are a bit old and fishy, but OK. I really need to update the page.


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 10:46 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I worked there when spars were wooden and men were steel.
From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 15 September 2006 10:51 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yo. Dudes thread are only so long on this board.
From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 10:57 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Cueball:
Yo. Dudes thread are only so long on this board.

Moderation in all things,especially,self-moderation.


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 15 September 2006 11:22 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Much as I appreciate your sometimes accurate analysis,cueball,the Saskatoon connection is somewhat tenuous.
From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
sgm
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posted 16 September 2006 12:00 AM      Profile for sgm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A little bit more info about the tanks and their deployment:
quote:
A Leopard tank squadron from Edmonton to better protect and enable the Canadian Forces to fight in those areas where Taliban forces have established well-coordinated and determined defences;
More here.

From: I have welcomed the dawn from the fields of Saskatchewan | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
farnival
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posted 16 September 2006 12:18 AM      Profile for farnival     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
...Interestingly, Human Rights Watch, the darling of upper middle class liberals, which has been a big supporter of the Responsibility to Protect (another name for “humanitarian war”) concept, expressly rejects your contention:

with all due r'Spector, i was not making a "contention" but rather a "suggestion". the "darling" bit is curious too. I could care less that some bougie rouge liberal from the States doesn't think that is a good idea, likely because it might make his fundraising efforts at home more difficult and force him to acknowlege the role played by his own country in the atrocity of Iraq and the other victim countries in the stupid "war on terror".

i was not suggesting that agressors be shut out of humanitarian intervention because of dirty hands. rather, they should be put fully on the hook to pay for said intervention, but not allowed to physically participate or be able to direct the aid money in any way. this might go a long way to building credibility for such humanitarian interventions in the world community and in the countries being intervened.

This article was mentioned before in another thread (ack, maybe this one!) directly questioning HRW's motives and backing, and their partisan US stance on all things. I'm not an HRW expert but it does shed a bit of context on his rejection of the "dirty hands" argument, to me.


From: where private gain trumps public interest, and apparently that's just dandy. | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 16 September 2006 10:04 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by farnival:
i was not suggesting that agressors be shut out of humanitarian intervention because of dirty hands. rather, they should be ... not allowed to physically participate
Sorry if I misinterpreted what you said, but you can see why I thought you were saying that those with dirty hands should cough up money, but not be allowed to intervene physically - the exact position that Kenneth Roth was rejecting.

ETA: In case it's not already clear, I agree with you, and not Roth.

[ 16 September 2006: Message edited by: M. Spector ]


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
N.Beltov
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posted 18 September 2006 07:04 AM      Profile for N.Beltov   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
4 Canadian troops killed in Kandahar today.

Meanwhile, the CCPA has released a study with similar conclusions to the one released in Britain recently. Afghanistan looks to be as dangerous, if not MORE so, for Canadian troops as Iraq is for US troops.

Correction: "The mission is so hazardous that a Canadian solider in Kandahar is six times as likely to be killed by hostile attack than a U.S. soldier serving in Iraq." See the CCPA report below.

Canada's Fallen: Understanding Canadian Military Deaths in Afghanistan

quote:
Canadian Forces are incurring a disproportionately heavy burden of casualties among coalition forces in Afghanistan, says Canada's Fallen, a report released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. ....

The first of its kind in Canada, the report paints a grim picture of Afghanistan where Canada has suffered 32 military deaths, 27 from hostile action (as of September 8, 2006). It finds that, after the United States, Canada has suffered more casualties from hostile action than any other U.S. ally—27 of 71 casualties, or two in five of non-U.S. deaths. ....

"As we examined the troubling data, the question arose as to whether the Liberals misjudged the danger, and if the Conservatives ignored it," said Steven Staples, noting that the Department of National Defence has provided the government with accurate pre-mission casualty estimates in previous missions.


[ 18 September 2006: Message edited by: N.Beltov ]


From: Vancouver Island | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
nister
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posted 18 September 2006 07:21 AM      Profile for nister     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Our soldiers were handing out pens and notebooks to kids at the time of the attack. Have we learned nothing from the previous tragedies to Iraqi children?

I don't care what the motive, stay the hell away from kids..don't encourage them to gather round.


From: Barrie, On | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 18 September 2006 07:31 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by nister:
Our soldiers were handing out pens and notebooks to kids at the time of the attack. Have we learned nothing from the previous tragedies to Iraqi children?

I don't care what the motive, stay the hell away from kids..don't encourage them to gather round.


Killing 517 of their older siblings in the past two weeks was ok? I like kids too, but shouldn't these warriors just go home and stop hanging around in dangerous foreign cities where they're obviously not being given a red-carpet welcome?


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
N.Beltov
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posted 18 September 2006 07:41 AM      Profile for N.Beltov   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Brig. Gen. David Fraser: "The Taliban is a bunch of cowards," he told reporters in Kandahar. "They are desperate. This is not an honourly fight at all." Fraser said the military believes the suicide bomb was attached to a bicycle.

With respect, General, people who sacrifice their own lives aren't cowards. We might consider it despicable ["two children were among the wounded"] but it is most certainly not cowardly. The Taliban, or the armed Pushtu countrymen, even engaged the Canadian troops in a stand up fight recently and suffered ~ 500 casualties according to NATO reports. If Canada suffered 500 casualties in one go [like the US loss in 1983 in the Marine barracks in Lebanon, for example] I would expect that the public in this country would demand a change or an end to the mission.

Gawd. How awful must it be to be a Canadian soldier in Afghanistan right now? A hopeless war and a duty to regurgitate the platitudes of politicians who will never risk their own lives in such a conflict.

NOT ONE MORE DEAD CANADIAN!!
Bring the troops home NOW!

[ 18 September 2006: Message edited by: N.Beltov ]


From: Vancouver Island | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
nister
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posted 18 September 2006 08:02 AM      Profile for nister     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Unionist, I want the soldiers home too. Until that happy day, I want them to discourage kids from hanging round..I certainly don't want them playing Pied Piper.

Last year Webgear said that [Iraqi] children were pumped for info about family members.


From: Barrie, On | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
N.Beltov
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posted 18 September 2006 08:06 AM      Profile for N.Beltov   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Well it's entirely possible that Canadian soldiers are being directed to carry out activities designed to win hearts and minds ...in Canada. And a soldier has to do his/her duty even if it costs him his life.
From: Vancouver Island | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Jingles
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posted 18 September 2006 08:18 AM      Profile for Jingles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Gotta love the war pimpimg of the mothercorp. In a radio story on the deployment of the Leopards yesterday, the reporter (imbedded whore), actually said (not an exact quote) "the tanks will help with rebuilding efforts". I shit you not. No explanation was provided on how exactly a 60 tonne MBT would build anything.

An interesting (to me, anyway) story:
Back in the mid 90's, I was in CFB Suffield for a brigade exercise. A trooper and I decided to visit the British tankers, and got to talking to a brit trooper working on a Challenger II. He was shocked when we told him we had Leopards. He was even more shocked when we told him they were Leopard I's. "We use those as targets at range practice", he said.


From: At the Delta of the Alpha and the Omega | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Slumberjack
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posted 18 September 2006 08:25 AM      Profile for Slumberjack     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It's a strategy called "the 3 block war." Simply put, military planners have been training soldiers to be prepared to conduct both high intensity and low intensity warfare, assistance to civil powers, and hearts and minds operations, all potentially within 3 city blocks of each other. A disasterous approach in my view. For example, the kids receiving gifts from soldiers on one street, may be the relatives of those who your troops are killing a few blocks away. Next time you're in the neighborhood giving away candy, that same kid may show up with revenge planted in his mind, sporting a strap on bomb. Military planners have been 'transforming' their training and equipment to facilitate the conduct of this type of urban warfare. I think it's time that the electorate regain control over the careerist military leadership and politicians and demand an end to this debacle.
From: An Intensive De-Indoctrination, But I'm Fine Now | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
N.Beltov
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posted 18 September 2006 08:25 AM      Profile for N.Beltov   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Well at least the mothercorp lists Canada's casualties. And they're only a week behind.
From: Vancouver Island | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
Jingles
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posted 18 September 2006 08:34 AM      Profile for Jingles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
"The Taliban is a bunch of cowards," he told reporters in Kandahar. "They are desperate. This is not an honourly fight at all."

The typical whiny rant of the Imperialist. "Why don't they stand in the open so we can slaughter them easier?". How about this: we give those leopards to the Taliban, give them some B-52's and artillery, and then they'll fight honourly. Jackass.

Did anyone ask that idiot if calling in an Apache to destroy a village is (sic) "honourly". Christ, they're even speaking Bushspeak now.

But really, what is cowardly is the ISAF hiding amoungst the civilian population of Kandahar. Using the western moral standards used so cravenly in Israel's attack on Lebanon, the Taliban are blameless for the civilian deaths, because the target was the terrorist occupation forces using children as human shields.

[ 18 September 2006: Message edited by: Jingles ]


From: At the Delta of the Alpha and the Omega | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Slumberjack
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posted 18 September 2006 08:36 AM      Profile for Slumberjack     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Jingles:
No explanation was provided on how exactly a 60 tonne MBT would build anything. Back in the mid 90's, I was in CFB Suffield for a brigade exercise. A trooper and I decided to visit the British tankers, and got to talking to a brit trooper working on a Challenger II. He was shocked when we told him we had Leopards. He was even more shocked when we told him they were Leopard I's. "We use those as targets at range practice", he said.

Yes, tanks are not designed for building anything. In all fairness though, the original Leopard 1, with the add on armour and electronics modifications throughout the years still is a formidible platform. Canadian troopers using the upgraded Leopard 1s routinely compete against the US Abrams tank in 'wargames' and have been quite sucessful.


From: An Intensive De-Indoctrination, But I'm Fine Now | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
Noise
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posted 18 September 2006 08:40 AM      Profile for Noise     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Brig. Gen. David Fraser: "The Taliban is a bunch of cowards," he told reporters in Kandahar. "They are desperate. This is not an honourly fight at all." Fraser said the military believes the suicide bomb was attached to a bicycle.

Shouldn't that be "The Taliban are"? Ah well, grammar comments aside, Frasers got his head stuck up his ass. Any person willing to sacrifice theirself in a war vs a technologically superior enemy as it's the ONLY method of fighting that you have available... Is, contrary to our generals dumbass response, not a coward. A coward, by defination, would have put his hands up and surrendered ^^. Wouldn't 'cowardly' be better defined as sitting in a tank 2-3 miles away? Assuming there is a 'victory' to be obtained within Afghanistan (which right now is no... other than Kill everything, no vicotry condition has been set), we're going to have to understand what makes the Taliban capable of turning people into bombs and combat that.

quote:
"If they kill that many, the Taliban must have thousands of fighters on that front," said Mohammed Arbil, a former Northern Alliance commander. In the recent past, Taliban units have been described in terms of dozens or hundreds at most.

The Taliban were only a few hundred fighters at one point. Our rather indescriminate warfare techniques have won them more fighters and allies than we have to this point 'nuetralized'. Good to know your wartime efforts have increased an enemy's strength not weakened it.

Support our troops and bring them home!


From: Protest is Patriotism | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jingles
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posted 18 September 2006 08:43 AM      Profile for Jingles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Have you seen the quality of people in the US military? Beating them in mil skills competition is like the Edmonton Oilers winning a special olympics hockey tournament. (I mean no offense to the handicapped).
From: At the Delta of the Alpha and the Omega | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Webgear
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posted 18 September 2006 11:00 AM      Profile for Webgear     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by nister:

Last year Webgear said that [Iraqi] children were pumped for info about family members.

When did I say that? I can not remember any conversation about this topic.


From: Montgomery's Tavern | Registered: May 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 18 September 2006 11:11 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Jingles:
Gotta love the war pimpimg of the mothercorp. In a radio story on the deployment of the Leopards yesterday, the reporter (imbedded whore), actually said (not an exact quote) "the tanks will help with rebuilding efforts". I shit you not. No explanation was provided on how exactly a 60 tonne MBT would build anything.
Was that by any chance the brainless Carolyn Dunn?

From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 18 September 2006 11:37 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Since July 22, 2006, there have been 19 Canadian soldiers killed in Afghanistan and 65 wounded.

Based on our glorious leaders' latest estimate of 5 more years, the same rate of bloodshed will produce:

588 dead (including the 18 killed before July 22)
1,950 wounded

That compares with 516 Canadians killed in the 1950-53 Korean War.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 18 September 2006 11:54 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Those casualties are considered quite acceptable for a five-year war.
From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 18 September 2006 12:54 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
20% of the total deployment is acceptable? You are talking out of your ass. 20% casualty rates are about the level where most military formation begin to lose cohesion.

Canada's deployment in Korea was substantially larger.

[ 18 September 2006: Message edited by: Cueball ]


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 18 September 2006 08:12 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
If our current 2200 troops in Afghanistan are never replaced or spelled off by reservist and new recruits, those numbers suggest our casualty rate could be 115 percent. Soldiers who become: wounded, MIA, , killed, missing, captured, interned or for whatever battlefield reasons are unable to fight would be counted as casualties of war. Sounds like a conveyer belt of death and permanent disability to me.

If our kids are that desperate for a living wage job and paid post-secondary, I'd seriously recommend fucking off to Europe for four or five years until this bout of fascism fades into the background.

[ 18 September 2006: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 18 September 2006 11:41 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It's soon to be 2,500 troops, and who knows how many in future years.

And the dead and injured will be replaced with fresh meat, in addition to the periodic rotation of regiments between Canada and Afghanistan.

Clearly the current casualty rates, on which those theoretical projections into 2010 and beyond are based, are acceptable to the Canadian government, and will continue to be acceptable until domestic political pressure makes them unacceptable. That's our job.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged

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