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Huge classified message archive relating to Afghan war to be released by WikiLeaks


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#41 thekirk

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 1327 PM

Bin Laden wouzld probably applaud that as the Saudi monarchy is also his enemy ;)


Ah, but you miss the point: bin Laden was not a creature of the monarchy, he was a creature of the surrounding Saudi society of religious extremists. The Russians would have been striking at the Saudi government for the exact same reason we should have--Failure to control their citizens. When you have your citizenry covertly and overtly supporting extra-state actors like bin Laden, you need to be held accountable for what happens. The Russians see this clearly, I think, and we don't.

Allowing this current trend of extra-state actors to interfere in state-level interactions is a recipe for disaster, for all of us. What's the world going to look like when this sort of thing becomes common? As technology grants power, and allows individuals to do things that formerly took the resources of a nation-state, what's going to restrain those individuals if the nation-state structure doesn't?

Here's a hypothetical, in the world that people like bin Laden and Assange are unknowingly making possible: Say, for example, that someone like Ross Perot developed a grievance with a foreign power--Iran, for example, at the time of the revolution. He certainly had cause, did he not? EDS employees effectively taken hostage, in hiding from the revolutionaries, lost contracts, and so forth. Now, posit a world where Ross Perot had the power, and the lack of accountability to anyone, to conduct what should properly be considered an act of war. If those events had taken place in the near future, where the controls for Iranian gas and oil infrastructure were accessible to the internet, let us say that our hypothetical Ross Perot-alike were to use that accessibility to essentially destroy Iranian oil and gas facilities, triggering huge catastrophic damages to them, with attendant loss of life.

Who's at fault, here? Does Iran have a claim on the US? Should it? An act of war was committed by a US citizen, but without the knowledge of the US governmental policy-makers. What answer will there be to something like this, if the bin Ladens and the Assanges of the world have their ways?

A world run according to Assange's rules will be a far more dangerous place, contrary to what he's apparently thinking. Nation-states have vastly ameliorated a lot of the violence, since Westphalia. When was the last time an entrepreneurial nobleman somewhere took it upon himself to go a-adventuring, and looted a neighboring province? Or, raided a city somewhere? Those days are gone, thankfully. Now, these idiots want to bring them back. A pox on all their houses, I say.
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#42 Marek Tucan

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 1330 PM

and result of such a strike would be exactly what? An occupation govt that would be an enemy not only for the likes of Bin Laden but also for supporters of the monarchy? Plus it will have infidels occupying not only Saudi soil but also the Holy Place itself? ;)
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#43 thekirk

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Posted 29 July 2010 - 1344 PM

I don't think the Russians would have put an occupation government into place, nor would such a thing have been necessary. Mecca historically was run, and protected from what is now Jordan, and I suspect they'd have told the Jordanians that they had a new tourist attraction to manage, whilst destroying the center of Saudi government. It's not like Saudi Arabia has always run things, there, is it?

The point would have been made, and perhaps should have been, that non-state actors hiding behind a government that allows recruiting and fund-raising are things that won't be tolerated by other nation-states. Riyadh becoming a crater would have been about the only effective way the Russians would have had of expressing that, as they certainly weren't able to mount an expeditionary force to invade. The US may find itself wishing it had, if only for the reasons of reinforcing existing standards of conduct between nation-states.
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#44 Archie Pellagio

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0016 AM

So you're suggesting nuking Australia because of one asshat ex-pat? :mellow:
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#45 thekirk

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0047 AM

So you're suggesting nuking Australia because of one asshat ex-pat? :mellow:


How the hell do you get that from what I said? Has Assange committed an act of war, killing 3000 people, paid for and supported by the Australian people with mass donations? Did the Australian government turn a blind eye to his activities, recruiting Australian nationals under their noses, in order to commit that act of war?

Assange does not approach the level of bin Laden, but he's an actor in that same sphere: An individual enabled by modern technology, punching well above his weight, intruding into arenas traditionally managed and ameliorated by nation-states. As such, he's a danger. What price can be levied on him, for his acts? How does this work, in the long run?

Let's take this trend to a logical conclusion: Let us posit that Assange actually manages to get himself access to some truly important information, say for example, the launch codes and protocols for someone's nukes. How do you deal with an individual, like that? What leverage do you have, upon him, where once you could rely on the force of his national government to rein him in? Who's going to take responsibility for these people, and if nobody does, then what? Will we have to free-lance things, and declare war on individuals, in order to bring their behavior under some kind of control?

Further suppose this: He's got the launch codes and controls. He's in Sweden. Sweden refuses to do anything--He's not their problem, he's not their national. The Swedish authorities may not even believe that he actually has the codes. Now what? Do you think the UK or the French are going to pay much attention to Swedish neutrality, in order to deal with the threat posed by Mr. Assange? Or, is it fairly likely that some Swedish citizens who have the misfortune to be Mr. Assange's neighbors are about to become collateral damage? There are some things that nations aren't going to be willing to screw around with, or risk.

Here's another thought: Do we really want to create conditions where a nation like the United States says to hell with it, and starts playing the same games? "Gee, we sure are sorry that those crazy bastards in the Montana Militia decided to drop a nuke on Mecca... Hell, we had no idea they'd gotten their hands on one, ya know... Those boys in Minot sure need an ass chewing...".

People forget that two can play the same game, and when you cheat the rules to make something happen, you'd better be damn sure you're not encouraging a stronger opponent to do the same thing to you. Apparently, the Saudis did not consider that fact, or they were relying on the essential good nature of the Bush administration. How long that sort of thing will continue to be true is questionable.

A world run according to the precepts these people want to hold to is going to be a vastly more dangerous place, with more hazards than we're used to. Allowing that trend to begin is something that I think future historians are going to hold against our generation, and it may be the most lasting legacy of the Bush administration, and the one he is most remembered for. Breaking the Westphalian nation-state model is a mistake, and we're going to regret it. I don't think we want to live in a world where there are actual James Bond villains, working outside the structure of the established nation-states.
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#46 EchoFiveMike

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0530 AM

Unfortunate accidents happen all the time



I was thinking more like this:
Posted Image
pour encourager les autres and all that.
S/F....Ken M
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#47 Sardaukar

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0727 AM

Uhhuh....
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#48 Jim Martin

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0827 AM

In better days, George Washington would have had this little fcuk doing the Danny Deever

[Edit] They have a Pfc in custody apparently on suicide watch. Treason charges, anyone?

Edited by Jim Martin, 30 July 2010 - 0832 AM.

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#49 DougRichards

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0855 AM

In better days, George Washington would have had this little fcuk doing the Danny Deever

[Edit] They have a Pfc in custody apparently on suicide watch. Treason charges, anyone?


Pentagon Papers anyone?
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#50 Jim Martin

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0902 AM

Pentagon Papers anyone?



And he should have been tried for treason too. There's a whole raft of people who should have swung back in the late '60's/early '70's.
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#51 Steven P Allen

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 0948 AM

And he should have been tried for treason too. There's a whole raft of people who should have swung back in the late '60's/early '70's.


are you kidding? He will be lionized in the press and applauded by the pregessives. Income from the books and speaking tours will make him rich.
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#52 thekirk

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1005 AM

are you kidding? He will be lionized in the press and applauded by the pregessives. Income from the books and speaking tours will make him rich.


He's going to have to get out of Leavenworth, first. This idiot did this while subject to military justice, unlike Ellsberg. He's got a lengthy period ahead of him in Leavenworth, before he's released, and by the time he is, he'll be a footnote in someone's news story.
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#53 DougRichards

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1013 AM

And he should have been tried for treason too. There's a whole raft of people who should have swung back in the late '60's/early '70's.


Like William Calley perhaps - ah, sorry, he was a hero....
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#54 Jim Martin

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1014 AM

Like William Calley perhaps - ah, sorry, he was a hero....



Excuse me? I know you're not suggesting that *I* consider him a hero. So just who are you implying sees him as a hero? Names please?
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#55 DougRichards

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1026 AM

Excuse me? I know you're not suggesting that *I* consider him a hero. So just who are you implying sees him as a hero? Names please?

He got away with mass murder with virtually no penalty (a slap on the wrist with a wet lettuce leaf really doesn't count does it?). Someone must have thought that he had not done anything wrong.

Meanwhile, the US people, and the people of their allies, have not been told the truth about the last 9 years or so. Someone lets the world have just a glimpse of what the situation is in reality and some people are calling for his lynching - or at least to give him a fair trial before he is lynched.

I would agree with them when they agree that Kissinger should face the consequences of his crimes, something which he has been shielded from. Lets face it, no American should ever be held accountable for crimes against humanity where it is onbly non-Americans who get killed.
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#56 Jim Martin

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1033 AM

He got away with mass murder with virtually no penalty (a slap on the wrist with a wet lettuce leaf really doesn't count does it?). Someone must have thought that he had not done anything wrong.

Meanwhile, the US people, and the people of their allies, have not been told the truth about the last 9 years or so. Someone lets the world have just a glimpse of what the situation is in reality and some people are calling for his lynching - or at least to give him a fair trial before he is lynched.

I would agree with them when they agree that Kissinger should face the consequences of his crimes, something which he has been shielded from. Lets face it, no American should ever be held accountable for crimes against humanity where it is onbly non-Americans who get killed.


I don't agree with the lightness of Calley's sentence, but then I also don't agree with the utter lack of charges against others. "Not been told the truth"? There's a fcuking war on, and guess what, your own government as well as mine has shielded civilians from "the truth" in every war we've had.

As for lynching? No. Hanging. After trial. He signed non-disclosure forms. He took a fcuking oath. Breach of said sworn statements, and breaking of that special trust, entitles him to a length of Manila rope and a short drop.
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#57 Skywalkre

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1039 AM

Excuse me? I know you're not suggesting that *I* consider him a hero. So just who are you implying sees him as a hero? Names please?

Fwiw, the last time that subject came up (which wasn't too long ago) no one actually called him a hero but there was certainly a decent amount of sympathy for him, which I find surprising.
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#58 Skywalkre

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1048 AM

Meanwhile, the US people, and the people of their allies, have not been told the truth about the last 9 years or so. Someone lets the world have just a glimpse of what the situation is in reality and some people are calling for his lynching - or at least to give him a fair trial before he is lynched.

That's BS. There's nothing that's come out in these papers so far that hasn't been known to folks who have been following the war. If any 'people' in the US or allied states are just now hearing this and crying foul then that's their own fault for not paying any attention to the matter in the first place. The shame is on them for not doing at least a cursory bit of research on a war their soldiers have been off and fighting and dieing in for almost a decade now.

As to the US soldier being held who is apparently behind this leak, I have no sympathy for whatever may happen to him. Given the lack of effort wikileaks made to shield Afghan civilians in these papers, there seems to be a very real danger now put on those who have tried to help us. That's just despicable, especially by an organization claiming they're making these moves to supposedly bring to light the plight of everyday citizens. We apparently can't go after wikileaks, but we can go after this soldier.
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#59 Jim Martin

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1048 AM

Fwiw, the last time that subject came up (which wasn't too long ago) no one actually called him a hero but there was certainly a decent amount of sympathy for him, which I find surprising.



I can only speak for myself, and I can pretty much guarantee that unless I was under the influence of illegal drugs (which unless administered to me without my knowledge, I wasn't) I did not voice sympathy for Calley.
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#60 rmgill

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Posted 30 July 2010 - 1051 AM

Excuse me? I know you're not suggesting that *I* consider him a hero. So just who are you implying sees him as a hero? Names please?


Apparently, Jimmy Carter and George Wallace.
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