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Author Topic: Why War? II
Fidel
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posted 03 August 2006 03:05 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
cont'd from here

quote:
Originally posted by Sven:

“He wanted Russia from the start”, but he and his good buddy, the butcher Stalin, signed the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact so that the Nazi’s could conquer France first. Then the Nazis attacked the UK, starting the Battle of Britain, in August 1940. The USSR was not attacked until June of 1941.


That sounds plausible, but it's not very likely, Sven. Stalin was more the calculating dictator of the two. Stalin had been studying Mein Kamf for about 15 years leading up to this scenario. He paid special attention to Hitler's comments on the Jews, and especially what he thought of Bolshevism.

Hitler sent a cameraman with Ribbentrop in order to discover whether Uncle Joe had aryan ear lobes or Jewish ones. Stalin wanted Molotov to find out whether there was and how strong Hitler's military buildup was in Switzerland and Romania.

I really can't imagine Stalin believing that he could maintain any kind of alliance with Hitler other than to agree to a non-aggression pact with Germany at the time. Stalin trusted no one, and especially not the leader of the most fascist nation to menace Russia in the last war. Stalin knew Hitler was preparing for war, but he believed it was going to be a war between the fascist nations. ie. as far as Stalin was concerned, everyone was fascist outside of Russia. A friend who visited Russia says the literature in war museums there still refer to the western world in general as fascist nations.

[ 03 August 2006: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 03 August 2006 03:21 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Fidel:
...as far as Stalin was concerned, everyone was fascist outside of Russia. A friend who visited Russia says the literature in war museums there still refer to the western world in general as fascist nations.

When, quiet ironically, the USSR was, essentially, one of the most fascist states in history, Fidel. You complain, Fidel, about the "fascist gulag" at Guantanamo and how horrific it is. But, Guantanamo is a microscopic and insignificant fleck of dust, Fidel, compared to the real gulags of Stalin and his murder of millions.


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 03 August 2006 03:23 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
There were some 8 million people warehoused in Soviet gulags. But we should remember that the Tsars were also infamous for jailing people without trials.

And I don't think the world's crime fighting agencies were quite prepared for their release. They were probably the most well-educated, ruthless and conniving criminals they've ever had to deal with according to the FBI.

And I don't believe Cuban's have missed that island's organized crime members released from Cuban prisons and given one-way tickets to Miami after 1959. I hear Santos Trafficante's people and Jeb Bush made a whack of change in a $100 million dollar health care fraud perpretrated not so long ago. Castro tipped off the FBI about an infamous mobster pow-wow in the Appalachians, but the feds fumbled it anyway. Go figure.

[ 03 August 2006: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
BetterRed
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posted 03 August 2006 06:31 PM      Profile for BetterRed     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
"There were some 8 million people warehoused in Soviet gulags. But we should remember that the Tsars were also infamous for jailing people without trials."

Exactly, Siberia was populated by Tsarist convicts in 1700's. And the English-speaking world had Australia at the same time. Ahh, double standards.. But that is beside the point

This is an extensive topic, and many facts can be brought up. Your figure is probalby true, Fidel although the number could be between 7 and 18 million.

First, Stalin's paranoid purges and arrests really began circa 1936-37. Many of those purged, exiled and/or shot were mid-level or top-level commisars and party members. (IOW about 30% of population.) While its undoubtedly true that Stalin and his underlings have sent a few million innocent regular folks (i.e, not involved in CPSU infighting), majority were part of the CPSU hierarchy.

I'm not defending Stalin's purges, simply pointing out facts. For a good comparison, remember "1984" and its mention of struggle between "middle and high groups"

All of my family had managed to miraculously avoid GULAGs. However, my great-grandfather was arrested in late 20's during Trotsky's anti-peasant purges. He spent a couple of years in local jail. Naturally he was on a local party's blacklist.
By all rights,this "counterrevolutionary kulak" should have been sent to GULAG in the following Stalin era. And yet he wasnt.

This is one of the reasons why I cling more to the "party infighting theory". rather than Robert Conquest's Cold Warrior theory.

Many people still believe official US version that 30-40 million people were held in GULAGS.Or that just as many were killed. If that's true then who fought WWII against the Nazis?
27 miilion Soviets were killed in WWII. If just as many were shot, then the country would have been a wasteland. Think of millions of able-bodied soldiers who would have to guard that many prisoners.
IOW, what the US historians say about GULAG and purge demographics is a few half-truths.
I dint just get this outta nowhere, but I heard analyses of the Purges in my history class in a Canadian university. Lets just say that most Canadian historians no longer believe Cold War versions.

Note: I already said that many non-Communist non-involved people were indeed incarcerated or shot. They may have been snitched on by neighbours or dragged in because they were "suspects". these people were innocents, no doubt. Im simply tryng to put the Purges in perspective, since there is still misunderstanding on this.
Im not denying that Stalin was a paranoid maniac. Or that millions of innocents suffered from his purges. However, the nature of the Purges is more complex than people think. This is not an apology for Stalin and his cronies.


From: They change the course of history, everyday ppl like you and me | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 04 August 2006 09:27 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The common denominator i see running through these posts is that war is most often the result of having a ruthless and/or ideologically driven group in power.
From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
siren
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posted 04 August 2006 09:36 PM      Profile for siren     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by otter:
The common denominator i see running through these posts is that war is most often the result of having a ruthless and/or ideologically driven group in power.

Thank goodness Canada is not suddenly beset by ideologues of say, the neoconservative sort.

Oh, wait.......


From: Of course we could have world peace! But where would be the profit in that? | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 06 August 2006 03:44 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yes, every Canadian should be looking over their collective shoulder about our own electoral selections.

But least we forget, war is profitable, very very profitable. Surely this knowledge should be a central theme in any questioning of 'why war'.


From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
nonsuch
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posted 07 August 2006 09:05 AM      Profile for nonsuch     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
otter:
quote:
The common denominator i see running through these posts is that war is most often the result of having a ruthless and/or ideologically driven group in power.

Of course. That's the kind of people who usually are in power, because that's who most desire power. And they don't know the word "enough"; they never stop of their own accord.
Once they control of their own nation, they invariably set their sights on another nation. Then, whether the target nation has an aggressive leadership at the time or not, it has little choice but to prepare for war... and to that end, promote its own most ruthless idealogues to positions of power.

The more interesting question is: Why does the citizenry always go along so readily?
I assume that's the reason you put this in Culture.


From: coming and going | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 07 August 2006 09:39 AM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
The more interesting question is: Why does the citizenry always go along so readily?
I assume that's the reason you put this in Culture.

Exactly. "How can they have a war if no one shows up?". The point was also made that those politicians who choose war should be on the front lines of that war along with their famillies.


From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
nonsuch
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posted 07 August 2006 01:47 PM      Profile for nonsuch     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ya, we did glance at this on the previous thread, before we became embroiled in WWII.
A single example can be indicative, but not definitive.
In order to investigate the relavant phenomena, i think it's necessary to take a long view of history: the evolution of cultures; human nature and its antecedents.

quote:
point was also made that those politicians who choose war should be on the front lines of that war along with their famillies.

(I have a quibble with 'their families': a leader's family may or may not include persons eligible for military service; the family members may or may not share the leader's view on war - or any other issue.)
That the peacetime leaders also lead the army is a matter of course in tribal societies; it's fairly standard in monarchies; almost unheard-of in a modern states, democratic or otherwise.
How come?

[ 07 August 2006: Message edited by: nonsuch ]


From: coming and going | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 07 August 2006 03:39 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Okay, not the family but how about all the leaders key advisors and administrators?

OPerating from the premise that violence and oppression are the tools of war-making, there is a lot to be said for cultural practices for sure. Violence and oppression are certainly endemic in human Nature as any study of sibling aggression will bear out. So extropolating that behaviour from the family, to the community, to the nation and beyond is a reasonable conclusion.

So perhaps the place to begin eradicating this behaviour is to ensure the children have the tools with which to learn how to effectively tolerate and even resolve differences before they lead to violence and oppression?


From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
nonsuch
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posted 07 August 2006 04:45 PM      Profile for nonsuch     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Absolutely.
On this issue modern western society has been scizophrenic. On one hand, we keep telling children that violence is wrong, that they should resolve their differences through dialogue and arbitration, that "it's not whether you win or lose but how you play the game". On the other hand, we show them a zillion movies about heroes who solve every problem with fists and guns, teach them how wonderful our country is in contrast to other countries and that "winning isn't everything - it'sa the only thing".

If we could agree that we don't want war, we could work out a more consistent strategy of child-rearing.


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Proaxiom
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posted 08 August 2006 04:15 AM      Profile for Proaxiom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by nonsuch:
On one hand, we keep telling children that violence is wrong, that they should resolve their differences through dialogue and arbitration,

That's not exactly true. Most of us don't teach our kids that violence is absolutely wrong. I certainly don't.

I teach mine about respecting other people, and to use words rather than aggression, but I also teach them not to allow themselves to be intimidated when someone else isn't playing by those rules. Sometimes physical force is the right way to respond, within the bounds of proportionality. Tit-for-tat, but never be the one to escalate it.


From: East of the Sun, West of the Moon | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
whalesinger
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posted 08 August 2006 11:54 AM      Profile for whalesinger     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

The more interesting question is: Why does the citizenry always go along so readily?


War begins at home. The vicious cycle of fear - aggression starts with an unresolved fear of "the Other" in ourselves. Only when a vast majority of people in the world can say:

I am not in war with myself, you or your country.
I am not in war even with Them.
I AM NOT IN WAR.


From: echoes of heaven found in desolation sound | Registered: Aug 2006  |  IP: Logged
TK 421
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posted 08 August 2006 01:15 PM      Profile for TK 421     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
As a soldier I don't want the political leadership up on the line. They have a job to do setting the grand strategic goals and harnessing the power of the nation to winning. My duty is get on with the fighting in accordance with their direction.

I'm certain they take the decision to go to war seriously.

TK


From: Near and far | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 08 August 2006 01:34 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
That's not exactly true. Most of us don't teach our kids that violence is absolutely wrong. I certainly don't.

I believe you. But the real failing regarding violence is the incredibly high degree of tolerance Canadian culture expresses towards violence. Especially the violence of bullying and which is inherent in sibling behaviours.

Just look at all the violence that is condoned in sports as 'acceptable male competition', or the epidemic of bullying, not just in the schoolyard, but the home, the workplace and practically every venue we have.

Or consider the reality that when two individuals start flailing at each other, just how quickly a circle of onlookers will gather and egg on the combatants.

Then there is the militaristic aggression that every country on the planet has to buy into or suffer the fate that places like Tibet have had to endure.

Models of violence and aggression abound in our culture and far outnumber their alternatives.


From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
Proaxiom
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posted 08 August 2006 06:29 PM      Profile for Proaxiom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Just look at all the violence that is condoned in sports as 'acceptable male competition', or the epidemic of bullying, not just in the schoolyard, but the home, the workplace and practically every venue we have.

Or consider the reality that when two individuals start flailing at each other, just how quickly a circle of onlookers will gather and egg on the combatants.


No doubt an oblique reference to Zinedine Zidane in there. The public reaction to that incident certainly supports your point, doesn't it?

A letter written to the Toronto Star was extremely cogent. While there seem to be a lot of people saying that Materazzi probably had it coming from what he said, the letter recalled the saying 'sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me,' asking when it became acceptable to answer name-calling with violence.

quote:
Then there is the militaristic aggression that every country on the planet has to buy into or suffer the fate that places like Tibet have had to endure.

That's pretty much the point of this thread, isn't it?

-----

A little zeitgeist...

Google 'Zidane headbutt'. Here's what I get.
Hit 1: YouTube clip of the headbutt.
Hit 2: Article on it.
Hit 3: A blog "[Zidane's] willingness to headbutt Materazzi makes him more of a hero, not less."
Hit 4: A web game in which the player controls Zidane and directs him to headbutt a large number of Materazzis,
Hits 5,6: News coverage of a pop song about headbutt shooting to the top of the charts in France.
Hit 7: Another game.
Hit 8: Video simulation of headbutt.
Hit 9: www.zidaneheadbutt.net

Nice.


From: East of the Sun, West of the Moon | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 08 August 2006 10:17 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The barber I go to is from Italy, and he told me that Materazzi was supposed to marry Zissou's sister. I don't know if that's true or whether it had anything to do with the head butt or not.
From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
nonsuch
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posted 12 August 2006 11:27 PM      Profile for nonsuch     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Who cares? It has nothing to do with war.
A personal fight between two guys is okay; there are plenty of rules and precedents to accommodate that in civilized society; it never escalates into warfare between two nations, unless the parcipants are crown princes or presidents, and you know that's pretty rare.
It's really not likely to make a government spend billions on new weaponry, or to mobilize thouysands of troops.
What is?

From: coming and going | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged
otter
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posted 13 August 2006 03:26 PM      Profile for otter        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Then I guess you never saw any of the outright hatred that existed between Arafat and Sharon and which helped poison and precipitate the ongoing conflict betweent he two nations.
From: agent provocateur inc. | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged

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