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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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manjumicha2001 - 01:45am May 9, 2002 EST (#2113 of 2131)

Btw, yor are not being clear with your evasive answer (why am I not surprised)

So blowing up children with mothers hiding in a house under the pretense of "liquidating terrorists" is perfectly kosher in your book. Of course, IDF can do that job in a clean manner (or by the book using your phrase) from 100 yards away.......and that makes it so perfectly OK in Lou's book. You really are a sicko.

lchic - 06:17am May 9, 2002 EST (#2114 of 2131)

""Robert Mueller acknowledged that officials largely ignored a request from a field agent to investigate suspicious pilot training by Middle Eastern men.
A statistical blip !

lchic - 08:33am May 9, 2002 EST (#2115 of 2131)

"" .... the increasing corruption of Indonesia's oligarchy does not bode well for the future ...,7792,712544,00.html

    The combination of elite level bribery, gambling, religious terrorism, Machiavellian politicking and blatant disregard for the destitute should preferably be consigned to the trashiest of airport bookshop thrillers. But, unfortunately for Indonesia's 210 million ordinary citizens, they have all combined over the last few days to starkly reinforce the notion that it is the ruling oligarchy's unfettered hypocrisy which dominates the world's fourth largest nation.
    At first glance it should be hats off to the police. On Monday they detained Elza Syarief, the leading lawyer of Tommy Suharto - the playboy son of the former dictator who is on trial for masterminding the murder of a judge - for allegedly bribing witnesses to change their testimony.
    Two days earlier they had arrested Ja'afar Umar Thalib, the leader of Laskar Jihad, the Islamist organisation widely believed to be responsible for much of the carnage in eastern Indonesia over the last two years.
    But why now and on whose orders? And why pick on Ms Syarief and not touch the owners of the numerous casinos that operate openly but illegally across the capital that are also making headlines at the moment since the Jakarta governor announced he wants to legalise them so they can be controlled and taxed?
    [A curious side note to the casino imbroglio is that most Islamic leaders were outraged by the plan to legalise gambling but bizarrely made little fuss when the plan appeared to be dropped but no effort was made to prevent the entertainment centres from continuing to operate illegally.]
    And why arrest Mr Ja'afar but not evict his hundreds of subordinates that remain in the sectarian violence-ravaged Moluccas while banning foreign journalists and NGO workers from entering the region?
    Money, in the form of protection payoffs, is undoubtedly a large part of the answer. But there are clearly darker and murkier, forces at work.
    This was obviously demonstrated on Tuesday when one of the first visitors to Mr Ja'afar's cell was the vice-president and leader of Indonesia's third largest political party, Hamzah Haz. The Islamic politicians described the 90-minute visit as a courtesy call, as "one Muslim brother to another".
    Mr Hamzah, who saw nothing untoward with his action, was clearly politicking - courting arguably the most influential radical Muslim leaders in his hour of need - even though the next general election is still more than two years away. Whether it will benefit him remains to be seen as his political opponents made great capital out of it.
    The incident also strengthens the theory that the three-year-long Moluccas strife, in which well over 5,000 people have died, is really a Jakarta conflict - members of the elite playing games with innocent and helpless Indonesians.
    Most Moluccans, from both sides, are fed up with the fighting and just want peace (a deal was signed in February to end the fighting). But the meddling outsiders refuse to leave and so the destruction continues. In the latest attack, a raid 10 days ago on a Christian village, a church was burnt and 13 people were killed.
    Suffering and neglect are not confined to the Moluccas. In a report published on Tuesday, the World Food Programme, revealed that the more than one million Indonesians displaced by various conflicts over the last few years are slipping into a permanent poverty trap as little is done to provide permanent solutions to their plight.

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