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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
(1259 previous messages)
- 01:06pm Apr 11, 2002 EST (#1260
I am quite amazed that no well-regarded investigative reporter
has written about the enormous conflict of interest between the
Bush-Baker-Saudi relationship and the national security interest
of our country in combating the world-wide terrorism that has its
origins in Saudi-financed militant Islam. Whenever I watch Baker
and Scowcroft shilling for the oil industry on T.V., it recalls to
mind Baker's infamous comment that "It's not about oil, it's about
jobs" and want to barf. I have suggested that the Wall Street
Journal take a shot at this subject, but it is too touchy for them
in an election year. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
ANDREW SULLIVAN: AMERICAN DRONE?
I find your coverage of the conflict in the Middle East to be
disturbing at best. Why is it that you feel that the Palestinians
should be subject to relentless slaughter while the Israeli's
should not suffer so much as a hang nail? Why is it acceptable
that the United States should be able to arm Israel for the
destruction of Palestinian bodies, infrastructure, and lives, but
Iran should not be able to sell them weapons to defend against
that? Your line of thinking is utterly hypocrtical. The United
States is like Syria in that it inflames Israel's sense of
self-righteousness and entitlement, it is like Iran for arming
Israel to the teeth, and it is like Iraq for funding Israel. How
wonderful it would be if the United States could use its influence
to stop the killing, rather than simply paying lip service to the
notion of peace?
Israel reminds me of South Africa during apartheid. The
pass system exists, the brutal massacre of civilians under the
guise of "protecting the society," attempts a cramming the
majority of the population on small parcels of lands (remember
South Africa's infamous Bantustads scheme?), and the
racial/religious caste system that exists. I am not surprised that
Israel has an apartheid-like system in place, as it was the only
nation that refused to comply with UN sanctions against South
Africa. Even members of the so-called "Axis of Evil"
complied. Israel is an apartheid state with a war criminal for a
prime minister. Yassir Arafat may not be an ideal partner for
peace, but neither is Ariel Sharon.
Have you ever considered that the Palestinians are fighting
for their homes, for their right to basic human dignity? Or do you
see them as being unworthy of basic human dignity? Do you think
that Israel should be able to continue to act in defiance of
international law, such as the one that allows Palestinians the
right of return?
I agree that the killing is deplorable, but I deplore it on
both sides. You talk on end about the killing of Israeli
civilians, when a large majority of those who have died in this
conflict have been Palestinian civilians. I get the sense that
their lives are worthless to you because you think of them as
little more than "Islamic fanatics."
You try to portray yourself as a media outsider, but you are
just like any other American media drone who unequivocally defends
- 01:27pm Apr 11, 2002 EST (#1261
While I'm responding to the hatchet job in MD1243 gisterme
4/11/02 3:24am I'd like to post a few things about "getting
ideas to closure."
For some time, the basic facts of the MD boondoggle have been
clear -- and ideas and presentations that in an ideal world would
have finished the farce have been surprisingly ineffectual. Ideas
that people may have expected to "blast right throught the problem"
have fizzled . . and not because they were wrong -- but because
there were too many barriers to propagation - of ideas that
Chain Breakers http://talk.guardian.co.uk/WebX?14@@.ee79f4e/618
These postings include work, done by distinguished groups, and
distinguished people, that "ought" to have "caught fire" -- but did
Can Missile Defense Work? by Steven Weinberg http://www.nybooks.com/articles/15132
The New York Review of Books February 14, 2002 ... Weinberg's
" . . In seeking to deploy a national missile
defense aimed at an implausible threat, a defense that would have
dubious effectiveness against even that threat, and that on
balance would harm our security more than it helps it, the Bush
administration seems to be pursuing a pure rather than applied
missile defenseó a missile defense that is undertaken for
its own sake, rather than for any application it may have in
defending our country. (emphasis added.)
By sensible tactical standards, rather than "pure" standards. . .
the MD systems, no matter how many billions are squandered on them,
won't work at all.
The missile defense boondoggle is a very large problem - and an
exemplar of a larger procedural problem. Much too often, the
truth is "somehow too weak" for reasons that we need to understand,
and change. At the most essential levels, these are only "hard"
problems because capable people (for instance, the staff of The
New York Times ) don't understand them. When getting facts
straight matters enough, there have to be workable moral
obligations, and patterns, to see that it happens.
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