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    Missile Defense

Russian military leaders have expressed concern about US plans for a national missile defense system. Will defense technology be limited by possibilities for a strategic imbalance? Is this just SDI all over again?

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rshowalter - 09:30pm Jul 28, 2001 EST (#7557 of 7562) Delete Message
Robert Showalter

The issues involved in getting to emotional peace , and the importance of doing so, were the subject of a thread Dawn Riley and I ran, with a great deal of participation from others, on Guardian Talk .

That thread, Emotional Peace in the Middle East , was featured in the Guardian's Middle East Special Section from October 10, 2000 to early April 2001. The thread started as follows:

" We are in an impasse that is just as dangerous as it looks in the Middle East. It looks like an emotional crisis, and whatever else it may be, it is surely just that. . . . . .

" . . . for peace, some psychological warfare injuries need to be acknowledged, and healed.

" The physical compromises necessary for peace are now, after much effort, largely in place.

" The emotional healing is absolutely necessary, too. It needs to be begun. . . . . We are looking at emotional problems, that are no accident, but that are at least as dangerous as they look.

" They need to be adressed. Only the truth, only a situation where "everybody is reading from the same page" can possibly work here. The situation is too desperate and too complicated for anything else."

The issues involved with moving the world away from nuclear terror, and towards more stable and reasonable security relatinships, involve some emotional issues, too. It seems to me that it is entirely impractical to sweep them under the rug.

Almarst , and the Russians, have considerable anger, and some of it seems to me to be well founded.

But although dealing with such issues may sometimes be dealt with on a "no fault" basis - as honest differences of opinion, sometimes it cannot be.

Almast has made that clear again and again on this thread, for some good reasons.

rshowalter - 09:32pm Jul 28, 2001 EST (#7558 of 7562) Delete Message
Robert Showalter

For example, the GUARDIAN reported on August 18, 2000 that Serb killings, which the Western press said were up to 100,000 dead -- were under 3000. (set out in THE KOSVO FRAUD - WILL THEY EVER ADMIT IT? ... )

Numbers matter in military decision making, and the disparity between 3,000 and 100,000 is glaring.

It is vital, if the world is to run decently for us to do a MUCH better job of establishing facts than we have done. And a less corrupt job.

The obligation to determine facts, where the facts matter, should be morally forcing in proportion to the importance of the actions that will be based on those facts.

The question "How do you check?" should be asked much more frequently and effectively.

For all the problems of a new medium, and the diversity of voices, the internet is making this more possible than it used to be.

For voices see and especially the audio interview of Michael Lewis by Bill Goldstein , on Next: The Future Just Happened with books editor Bill Goldstein. . . . "There are so many roles in society whose prestige and power is tied to privileged access to information," Lewis says in the interview, "a privilege that is going to vanish in the near future." (because of the internet)

For PEACE, we need to be more open, and better informed. Lies are dangerous. Deceptions are dangerous. And mistakes are dangerous.

The goodness of a body of ideas can be judged in terms of context, and also the fit with other contexts that, for logical reasons, have to fit together. . . . . The beauty, and ugliness, of a theory can be judged, in terms of the context it was built for, and other contexts, including the context provided by data not previously considered.

Maybe we ought not to reject conspiracy theories -- which CAN make a lot of sense, and which, as a matter of history, DO explain a great deal. Maybe, by doing so, we shortchange ourselves, and the whole world. Maybe we ought to test such theories for beauty -- to fit with facts --- and take plenty of care to see that the facts fit together.

rshowalter - 09:33pm Jul 28, 2001 EST (#7559 of 7562) Delete Message
Robert Showalter

More needs to be said to do justice to almarst's posts. .

MD7529 almarst-2001 7/27/01 10:58pm . . MD7530 almarst-2001 7/27/01 11:05pm
MD7531 almarst-2001 7/27/01 11:13pm ... MD7532 almarst-2001 7/27/01 11:30pm
MD7533 almarst-2001 7/27/01 11:33pm ... MD7534 almarst-2001 7/27/01 11:35pm
MD7535 almarst-2001 7/27/01 11:37pm ... MD7536 almarst-2001 7/27/01 11:39pm

Back in the morning.

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