Jeff, Elias, Please Clarify (was Re: [SPORK] Something I REALLY
want John Hall to Try To Understand)
Wed, 26 Mar 2003 20:19:11 -0800
S. Alexander Jacobson wrote:
>I am looking for clarification of your beliefs.
How refreshing, thanks! :-)
>If I understand you all correctly, your main objection to the current military action is that
>it was not done under the auspices of the "international community"*. But that you would approve of it, if it were.
Generally, yes, although I would think it was sad and would hope for a
swift resolution with a little loff of life as possible.
>What I am missing is the motivation for this objection. I would break down motivations for this objection into two categories: moral and strategic.
If you'd like, I'll go there with you... Honestly though, I think the
motivation for my objection falls into both categories to some degree.
I'll try to address each of your points to some degree.
>If yours is a moral objection, then you are saying that this action would be morally ok, if and only if the "international community" approved.Such a moral objection is crucially dependent on one of three beliefs:
>1. US moral inferiority [...]
Nope, for anyone to proclaim that 'their hands are clean' would be
>2. Emergent Morality [...]
I believe that this is the case moreso than any nation going it alone,
but I wouldn't say that it 'magically emerges', simply that by putting
more heads together to solve a problem we're more likely to come out
with a solution that is pallatable.
>3. Making the Case [...]
The bush administration has said they have evidence, but haven't
presented much more than poorly forged documents, political double-speak
and sound bytes. Further, it is clear that there is much more going on
here than is being said publicly - many other countries are in violation
of UN resolutions, the geneva conventions, etc. and we're not invading
them... It's pretty clear that if the US were to make a strong case for
the current action there would undoubtedly be more international support.
>If you don't believe 1-3 above, then I assume your objection is actually strategic:
>4. US Control of Iraq makes the US weaker [...]
Nope, I think much of this game is all about control in one way or
another. Unfortunately, that control is something which just begs to be
>5. Inviting terrorism [...]
Absolutely. It will not surprise me in the least if there are more acts
of terrorism against the US as a direct result of this 'liberation' of
Iraq. US imperialism seems to be a direct friction point with many
people around the world.
>6. Breakdown of "international law" [...]
Absolutely. We've broken down the doors and left a big, gaping hole for
others to follow in our footsteps. Again, it will not surprise me in the
least if this sparks a series of 'preemtive' aggressions in other parts
of the world, with the agressors claiming the same justification that
the US is. Perhaps the US will give a hypocritical smackdown to anyone
who tries but then the cards will really be on the table, won't they?
>I am not going to argue against any of 1-6 now. I just want to be clear where you all stand.
>Apropos the subject of this thread, perhaps then John Hall will understand your position better as
So, I guess from the above, my objection is primarily strategic in that
it's just bad policy to behave the way the US has been. There is a moral
side to things, however, and I simply do not believe that all
alternatives have been exhausted. As with anything, there is a multitude
of interacting factors at work here...