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 [F] New York Times on the Web Forums  / Science  /

    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.

Earliest Messages Previous Messages Recent Messages Outline (5867 previous messages)

rshow55 - 05:43pm Nov 17, 2002 EST (# 5868 of 5881) Delete Message
Can we do a better job of finding truth? YES. Click "rshow55" for some things Lchic and I have done and worked for on this thread.

almarst2002 11/17/02 5:27pm ends . . ." My suggestion - lets look for the culprit somwhere else, not in religion."

My sense is that religion is part of the problem. A big part, when Islamic usages get in the way of reasonably functional performance in Arab terms.

I've been more than willing to argue that there are big problems with what America has done. All the same, the notion that America, or even American companies, have significantly oppressed Arab nations seems unconvincing to me. Or, at least, a limited part of the problem. American companies have dealt with the social systems they've interacted with - and if they've driven hard bargains - I'd still say that some of the sweetest deals going have been with Arab oil producers.

For one thing, what the historian William McNeil refered to as the "moslem catalepsy" (catalepsy means relative paralysis) has been an important, problematic historical problem for 600 years.

When Bin Laden motivates his people - he appeals to religion - Islamic religion.

When the Arabs argue about most things, they make many appeals to religion.

Religion is one issue, and a key issue - about current problems.

We need to ask Americans to be honest - but not only Americans.

If we could ask American power, and Arab power, too - to be responsible to facts that could be checked - many of the sorrows and inefficiencies of the world could be solved pretty gracefully and quickly.

And both the United States, and the Arab world, would have more of substance to be proud of, and less to be ashamed of.

rshow55 - 05:51pm Nov 17, 2002 EST (# 5869 of 5881) Delete Message
Can we do a better job of finding truth? YES. Click "rshow55" for some things Lchic and I have done and worked for on this thread.

In the Iraqi case, for instance, Saddam, if he actually wanted to serve the material and reasonable spiritual interests of his people, could call up some Russian (or Russian and French) oil companies - and organize graceful, easy checking that would make his regime (and his person) completely secure.

The US oil interests would lose money if that happened - compared to many other scenarios.

The aggressiveness of the US and the "oppression" of Iraq are both limited - and with reasonably rational behavior, a lot of problems could be solved.

rshow55 - 06:11pm Nov 17, 2002 EST (# 5870 of 5881) Delete Message
Can we do a better job of finding truth? YES. Click "rshow55" for some things Lchic and I have done and worked for on this thread.

International law and international patterns of conduct are being redefined , clarified , and renegotiated .

5555 rshow55 11/8/02 5:56pm . . . 5556 rshow55 11/8/02 5:57pm
includes this:

When the United Nations was formed - the overwhelming rule set out was the outlawing of agressive war - defined in stark territorial terms - and the key objective was human safety and a world stable enough so that different peoples could live together and work together.

The prohibition of agressive war, set out in the stark territorial terms in which it was defined in the UN charter, has been largely achieved. But if the objective is safety and human welfare - there has to be more than just a simple prohibition on agressive war - and sometimes there have to be exceptions to that rule - if the fundamental objective of human safety and stability is to be served in an imperfect world.

For human safety, and international order, there have to be limits on what nation states can do within their own borders - what they can threaten to do - and limits on their ability to ignore agreements they have made. Those limits, not yet clearly defined, need to become workably clear.

There have to be limits on human behavior, especially terrorism, that make reasonable international order possible.

Such limits are being defined debated, rationalized, focused and clarified by renegotiation now. This is something that is necessary. And an ongoing process, to some extent. A process involving both power and reason.

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