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    Missile Defense

Technology has always found its greatest consumer in a nation's war and defense efforts. Since the last attempts at a "Star Wars" defense system, has technology changed considerably enough to make the latest Missile Defense initiatives more successful? Can such an application of science be successful? Is a militarized space inevitable, necessary or impossible?

Read Debates, a new Web-only feature culled from Readers' Opinions, published every Thursday.

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almarst-2001 - 04:21pm Mar 28, 2002 EST (#914 of 921)

"The current US military industrial complex" may be a too narrow definition as of today. At least it should inlude the Energy (Oil-Gas) companies and some strategic materials as well. Those are the main forces, in my view, shaping the American policies and defining the "American interests" abroad.

May be, those are indeed indispensable and vital interests, America can't risk to surrender the full control of. But, if so, that at least should be clearly and openly stated and debated in THIS Country. Whoes citizens make to pay the taxes and feel "patriotic" sending the death accross the World.

It MUST be PROVED before the next "humanitarian" bombing is under way. Before the next "evil" is designated to be exterminated together with unfortunate "colateral" damage of its citizens.

And, then, it should be clearly and honestly stated WHAT this nation policy is really about and what it is willing to do to acheve it. Not to hide behind slogans from the Bible, Constitution and American Ideals. It is just a little bit too much for the taste of any "Homo Sapience". Pardon me, please.

rshow55 - 04:29pm Mar 28, 2002 EST (#915 of 921) Delete Message

Almarst , your clarification seems sensible to me. I believe that, if leaders of nation states outside the US want these matters clarified, it will happen.

I don't think an American presidential administration in this century has ever achieved such low credibility as the current one. People, some inside the US, and many more outside, are getting more willing to ask for facts - - even when the issue of deception on the part of the United States has to be explicitly considered.

Here's a quote from a mystery story writer, Dashiell Hammet in The Thin Man , 1933. Hammet's speaking of a sexy, interesting, treacherous character named "Mimi". He's asked by a police detective what to make of what she says:

" The chief thing," I advised him, "is not to let her wear you out. When you catch her in a lie, she admits it and gives you another lie to take its place, and when you catch he in that one, admits it, and gives you still another, and so on. Most people . . . get discouraged after you've caught them in the third or fourth straight lie and fall back on the truth or silence, but not Mimi. She keeps trying, and you've got to be careful or you'll find yourself believing her, not because she seems to be telling the truth, but simply because you're tired of disbelieving her. "

The United States, in its diplomatic and military fuctions, can be too much like that.

If world leaders want some things clarified, questions of US veracity are going to have to be adressed. But if leaders want these matters clarified, these issues can be -- and I believe that it would be greatly to the benefit of the United States to have them clarified.

The "missile defense" boondoggle is a fine place to start, because the so many of the technical issues are so clear.

lchic - 04:55pm Mar 28, 2002 EST (#916 of 921)

The photocopier, it's role, in ending the cold war ...

    ... the Soviet Union was doomed. It could not make the transition to the information age, since that would require technological freedoms that threatened the regime. Or, to put it another way, you cannot have a knowledge-based economy without freedom of information. ... Which brings us back to the Soviet Union. Brezhnev & Co wanted to modernise their empire while at the same time maintaining the perquisites of the ancient régime . It couldn't be done.,7369,672902,00.html

lchic - 05:07pm Mar 28, 2002 EST (#917 of 921)

Quote: Albert Camus

A free press can of course be good or bad,
but, most certainly, without freedom
it will never be anything but bad

rshow55 - 05:17pm Mar 28, 2002 EST (#918 of 921) Delete Message

In Betraying Humanity , Bob Herbert says that ...

" . . . ultimately the many tribes that inhabit this earth are going to have to figure out a way to forge some workable agreements on how we treat one another."

One key issue, that hasn't been resolved, deals with the flow of information, and the responsibility to determine and share facts on which common function and cooperation depend.

Now, there sometimes seems to be an almost unrestricted "freedom to lie." -- and "freedom to reject checking."

A free press offers an effective force that stands against that.

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