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PoliCon
03-14-2009, 10:31 PM
MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) -- Russia expressed interest in using Cuban airfields during patrol missions of its strategic bombers, Russia's Interfax news agency reported

"There are four or five airfields in Cuba with 4,000-meter-long runways, which absolutely suit us," Maj. Gen. Anatoly Zhikharev told Interfax.

Zhikharev, who is the chief of staff of the Russian Air Force's long-range aviation, said, "If the two chiefs of state display such a political will, we are ready to fly there."

Zhikharev also told Interfax that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has offered a military airfield on La Orchila island as a temporary base for Russian strategic bombers.

"If a relevant political decision is made, this is possible," he said, according to Interfax. Zhikharev said he visited La Orchila in 2008 and can confirm that with minor reconstruction, the airfield owned by a local naval base can accept fully-loaded Russian strategic bombers.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/europe/03/14/russia.cuba.bombers/?ic

PoliCon
03-14-2009, 10:31 PM
It seems like we've been down this road once before. Difference is today - we have a spinless unprincipled democrat in the whitehouse.

AHeneen
03-15-2009, 02:35 AM
It's just Russia flexing their muscles. Russia has been backed into a corner: their military today is little more than corroding Soviet relics, their sphere of influence has been eroded (some have joined the EU; some have lost corrupt, pro-Moscow leaders to pro-Western leaders, two...both bordering Russia...are trying to join NATO), their leaders still hold a somewhat Cold-War-era mentality (all the more reason they're not happy for loosing their sphere of influence), and finally they are too prideful to accept their grossly diminished power & influence.

If you felt backed into a corner like them, what would you do? Make friends with socialist states to piss off your arch-rival (Venezuela, Iran, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Cuba, and more), try to show you still have a navy by (trying to) send your navy's flagship around the world visiting places close/important to your arch-rival (Cuba, Venezuela, the Panama Canal), infusing cash & weapons in anti-Western states/rebellious regions(Iran, Central Asia, Venezuela, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Trans-dneister, and more...remember their support of pro-Moscow South Ossetia over pro-Western Georgia in last summer's war?), use gas/oil as a noose to tie up Western/pro-Western countries (pretty much all of the EU, & especially NATO-membership-seeking Ukraine), and finally try to show your Soviet relics still operate and can pose a "threat"(so-to-say) by trying to show-off to your arch-rival (open air & naval bases in Venezuela & Cuba, fly bomber missions near US airspace to provoke us, fly a bomber over US aircraft carrier).

While I certainly don't think the Ruskies are no threat, you shouldn't feel like this is a great threat (if you still have a Cold War mentality, go ahead and think what you'd like). We've been working to get Ukraine (which is about 40% ethnic Russian and hosts a MAJOR Russian naval base) and Georgia into NATO and have been trying to garner influence in many other former Soviet nations , it is only a natural reaction that Russia would try to do the same to us.

Edit: According to Russia's state English-language news agency, "Strategic Bombers will Stay Inside Russia" (http://www.russiatoday.com/Politics/2009-03-14/_Strategic_bombers_will_stay_inside_Russia_.html)

THE RESISTANCE
03-15-2009, 06:40 PM
Since China may call in the "note" on the U.S. They have suceeded in "giving us the rope to hang us with".

So why would Russia not move back in to Cuba? I mean what world power is there to stop them?

How long till our country, the United States breaks apart anyway? Two language countrys have little in survival rates going for them, along wiith the other sale-outs that have been done over the last 80 years.

Molon Labe
03-15-2009, 07:39 PM
Since China may call in the "note" on the U.S. They have suceeded in "giving us the rope to hang us with".

So why would Russia not move back in to Cuba? I mean what world power is there to stop them?


Let's see....after the Georgia deboggle, and NATO continually moving eastward over the last decade and a half, it seems like a normal response.....at least an international realtions theory point of view.

Odysseus
03-15-2009, 10:15 PM
Let's see....after the Georgia deboggle, and NATO continually moving eastward over the last decade and a half, it seems like a normal response.....at least an international realtions theory point of view.

Except that the Eastern European nations that joined NATO did it because they had been under Russia's domination and didn't want to repeat the experience, while Putin is using everything at his disposal to try to force those countries back into Russia's "sphere of influence." If the Russians weren't bullying Ukraine, Georgia, the Baltic republics and the rest of Eastern Europe, NATO membership would have little appeal.

Molon Labe
03-16-2009, 08:00 PM
Except that the Eastern European nations that joined NATO did it because they had been under Russia's domination and didn't want to repeat the experience, while Putin is using everything at his disposal to try to force those countries back into Russia's "sphere of influence." If the Russians weren't bullying Ukraine, Georgia, the Baltic republics and the rest of Eastern Europe, NATO membership would have little appeal.

I'm old enough to remember and to have experienced the "why" of NATO. Seems that "why" threat ended nearly two decades ago. You have a way of oversimplifying things in world politics. You don't have to be a scholar (or maybe you do) to know how lucrative "freeriding" on the backs of U.S. security is. If we'll pick up the tab then why should they care?
Who cares what Russia does to it's neighbors. You make it sound as if it's 1986. This is not the USSR, regardless peoples delusions. There is a fraction if any of the threat.
You obviosly have no ability about you to understand what it means to have every nation on your border making security treaties with a stronger rival. Taking a cautionary approach with Russia is prudent. "Poking the Bear" is something only the ignorant recommend.


http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=5421

PoliCon
03-16-2009, 08:06 PM
Ah isolationists. The world looks so much simpler when your head is up your own ass . . . .

Odysseus
03-16-2009, 09:17 PM
I'm old enough to remember and to have experienced the "why" of NATO. Seems that "why" threat ended nearly two decades ago. You have a way of oversimplifying things in world politics. You don't have to be a scholar (or maybe you do) to know how lucrative "freeriding" on the backs of U.S. security is. If we'll pick up the tab then why should they care?
Who cares what Russia does to it's neighbors. You make it sound as if it's 1986. This is not the USSR, regardless peoples delusions. There is a fraction if any of the threat.
You obviosly have no ability about you to understand what it means to have every nation on your border making security treaties with a stronger rival. Taking a cautionary approach with Russia is prudent. "Poking the Bear" is something only the ignorant recommend.
http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=5421
I can sum up your argument in one sentence: Because it's far away, it can't hurt us.

And yet, things that are far away can and do hurt us. Europe may seem far away, but Russia's deals with Iran have security implications for us that you continually refuse to see. A nuclear-armed Iran will seek to spread its revolutionary jihad to the infidel west, and while it may not seem like our fight right now, it certainly will be after Europe falls. The US hasn't done a thing to Venezuela, but Hugo Chavez has decided that villifying us is the best way to consolidate power and discredit his opposition, or maybe he really believes that we care what he does within his borders, but either way, he is exporting his revolution to the rest of South America, and while you may not think that is aid to FARC in Colombia affects us, the drug trade that goes up through Central America is destabilizing Mexico and spilling over into our borders, and Russia is Chavez's main supplier of arms. Why are they doing that if they're intent is solely to bully their neighbors?

What you don't grasp is that Russia, like many nations, is fundamentally unstable, and that despite the sudden influx of money for energy exports, it is in a downward spiral. Demographically, its population is shrinking, its infrastructure is crumbling and the elites are more concerned with lining their own pockets and stifling opposition than they are with governing. Strong, confident nations on an upward path aren't a threat to us, but formerly strong nations in decline tend to lash out and strike at anything around them as they implode, especially nations that are fueled by mythical belief that their failures were caused by external forces, rather than their own poor choices. Russia, like the Middle East oil states, is like Spain in the nineteenth century, a weak power whose vast wealth disguises the weakness, and while it can rattle its sabres locally, its influence in the world is waning and they know it.

NATO's mission, in the short term, was to contain Soviet communism. In the long term, it was to maintain European stability and prevent future wars on the continent. That mission remains valid, and the best way to accomplish it is to take in the Russian border states that seek to avoid returning to Russia's domination, while also combining those elements in Europe that seek to avoid Islamic domination and strengthening them against that threat, which is a far greater danger to us. Otherwise, I see NATO collapsing in a few years, not because of Russia, but because the increasing Islamic populations of European member states will make defense cooperation with the US unworkable. We can maintain defense agreements with a German Federal Republic, but not with an Islamic Republic of Germany that sees itself as a strategic partner with nuclear-armed Iran and Pakistan against the infidel. That's the future that we have to avoid, unless you're willing to see the US standing alone against a global caliphate.


Ah isolationists. The world looks so much simpler when your head is up your own ass . . . .
His head is in the sand, like many peoples', but let's hope that they take a look around them before the chaos gets too close to defeat.

PoliCon
03-16-2009, 10:17 PM
His head is in the sand, like many peoples', but let's hope that they take a look around them before the chaos gets too close to defeat.Yes but it's much more fun to say it my way :p

http://www.laffyerassoff.com/funny-pictures/people/II/heads-up-2.jpg

djones520
03-16-2009, 11:24 PM
I'm old enough to remember and to have experienced the "why" of NATO. Seems that "why" threat ended nearly two decades ago. You have a way of oversimplifying things in world politics. You don't have to be a scholar (or maybe you do) to know how lucrative "freeriding" on the backs of U.S. security is. If we'll pick up the tab then why should they care?
Who cares what Russia does to it's neighbors. You make it sound as if it's 1986. This is not the USSR, regardless peoples delusions. There is a fraction if any of the threat.
You obviosly have no ability about you to understand what it means to have every nation on your border making security treaties with a stronger rival. Taking a cautionary approach with Russia is prudent. "Poking the Bear" is something only the ignorant recommend.


http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=5421

You realize that same type of thinking lead to WW2?

Odysseus
03-17-2009, 02:54 AM
You realize that same type of thinking lead to WW2?

Acting on the belief that war isn't likely is the fastest way to get dragged into one. If, on the other hand, you believe that war is imminent and you prepare for it, then you have a good chance of preventing it because a bad guy isn't going to start a fight that he thinks that he'll lose. It's the same logic behind having the right to keep and bear concealed arms, because it decreases the likelyhood that you will be mugged. Bad guys don't attack hard targets when they can take on soft ones. There's an old Arab proverb, which says "A falling camel attracts many knives." They can see that the west is faltering. Europeans are ambivalent about their own culture and have adopted a suicidal pacifism in the face of vicious aggression, because they've forgotten the lessons of WWII. Our appeaseniks seem to think that if they withdraw from the rest of the world, the rest of the world will forget about us. They won't. They'll just get to us last.

Molon Labe
03-17-2009, 07:01 AM
Ah isolationists. The world looks so much simpler when your head is up your own ass . . . .

http://i594.photobucket.com/albums/tt25/MolonLabe10/000ykkf6.jpg?t=1237291260

No one wants to hear your retarded uninformed opinion about this.

Molon Labe
03-17-2009, 07:05 AM
You realize that same type of thinking lead to WW2?

Bull shit. Prudent strong negotiations and the strongest military force on earth are worthy causes but aggressive stances in others spheres of influence are two different things. Enough of the "everyone is Hitler" garbage.

PoliCon
03-17-2009, 07:53 AM
Bull shit. Prudent strong negotiations and the strongest military force on earth are worthy causes but aggressive stances in others spheres of influence are two different things. Enough of the "everyone is Hitler" garbage.

You seem to think that there needs to be someone else out there our equal to keep a balance of power . . . . :rolleyes:.

PoliCon
03-17-2009, 07:55 AM
No one wants to hear your retarded uninformed opinion about this.Have you checked for polyps? You might want to check for polyps . . . . I mean - what's the good of having your head up your own ass if you don't check for polyps?

Molon Labe
03-17-2009, 08:27 AM
You seem to think that there needs to be someone else out there our equal to keep a balance of power . . . . :rolleyes:.

As usual. You say nothing and know nothing.

asdf2231
03-17-2009, 08:45 AM
As usual. You say nothing and know nothing.

Actually he kind of accurately pointed out where your head was in relation to reality.

He just didn't drag it out over 80 posts full of his own bloviating about how smart he was and how simple and bucolic anyone else who rejected his thinking was.

:)

djones520
03-17-2009, 09:11 AM
Actually he kind of accurately pointed out where your head was in relation to reality.

He just didn't drag it out over 80 posts full of his own bloviating about how smart he was and how simple and bucolic anyone else who rejected his thinking was.

:)

http://is1.okcupid.com/users/156/664/1566642811609810544/mt1114812009.jpg

:p

PoliCon
03-17-2009, 10:18 AM
Actually he kind of accurately pointed out where your head was in relation to reality.

He just didn't drag it out over 80 posts full of his own bloviating about how smart he was and how simple and bucolic anyone else who rejected his thinking was.

:)

yea! What the dancing blue guy said!:D

Molon Labe
03-17-2009, 10:42 AM
Actually he kind of accurately pointed out where your head was in relation to reality.

He just didn't drag it out over 80 posts full of his own bloviating about how smart he was and how simple and bucolic anyone else who rejected his thinking was.

:)

Don't remember saying anything about being all that smart, but I can sure identify who isn't about this subject.



yea! What the dancing blue guy said!:D

Is this better?

Uh....I agree Policon.....Hitler...Nazis! When's the draft?


Over There, Over There
Send the word, send the word,
Over There
That the Yanks are coming,
The Yanks are coming,
The drums rum tumming everywhere
So prepare,
Say a Prayer
Send the word,
Send the word to beware
We'll be over, we're coming over.
And we won't be back till it's over over there!
:rolleyes:

PoliCon
03-17-2009, 11:56 AM
tell me molon - how many Defense Department annalists do you know?

asdf2231
03-17-2009, 12:45 PM
Oh Hay!


Russian president orders military rearmament

The Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev, has ordered a 'comprehensive' military rearmament after accusing Nato of once again encroaching on Moscow's sphere of influence in the former Soviet Union.

Mr Medvedev's bellicose speech risks causing unease in Washington and will dampen hopes of a rapid improvement in strained East-West relations.

The president told defence ministry officials in Moscow that Nato's continued enlargement ambitions meant that Russia had been left with no choice but to increase its conventional and nuclear combat preparedness.

Russia leaves open chance of further strikes into GeorgiaThe threat to Russia's stability had also been increased by local crises, Mr Medvedev added, in an apparent reference to last year's five-day war with Georgia.

"The attempts to enlarge Nato's military infrastructure are not ceasing," said Mr Medvedev. "All this calls for qualitatively modernising our armed forces and reshaping their image. This involves the enhancement of combat preparedness of our troops, primarily the strategic nuclear forces."

A "comprehensive re-armament" of the Russian army and navy will begin in 2011, the president announced.

Despite the aggressive symbolism of the word, US officials are less likely to be concerned about Mr Medvedev's talk of rearmament than they are of his antagonistic references to Nato.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/5005261/Russian-president-orders-military-rearmament.html

PoliCon
03-17-2009, 12:56 PM
but but but Obama says we need to unilaterally disarm and destroy our nukes for world peace!! :rolleyes:

and Gator and molon say all we need to do is retreat behind our own border and we'll have world peace!!!!

Molon Labe
03-17-2009, 02:43 PM
Oh Hay!


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/5005261/Russian-president-orders-military-rearmament.html

Great article...I couldn't have proven my point better.


The president told defence ministry officials in Moscow that Nato's continued enlargement ambitions meant that Russia had been left with no choice but to increase its conventional and nuclear combat preparedness

Classic zero sum game.

PoliCon
03-17-2009, 03:04 PM
Great article...I couldn't have proven my point better.



Classic zero sum game.
Right because we have such ambition towards dominating and possessing Russia. :rolleyes:

asdf2231
03-17-2009, 03:09 PM
Ody already made my argument upstream.

Isolationists are pussies too scared of the theoretical to deal with the realpolitik.


And if you are going to argue that it just makes good sense then show me where someone spewing that crap has gotten elected to a post higher than dog catcher in the last decade AND been able to convince anyone other than the retards that voted them there that it was sound policy. *coughRonPaulCough*

It ain't 1800 moron.

asdf2231
03-17-2009, 03:10 PM
Right because we have such ambition towards dominating and possessing Russia. :rolleyes:

You miss his point!

If we never leave the US then no-one will ever get mad at us. :rolleyes:

Odysseus
03-18-2009, 10:48 AM
Right because we have such ambition towards dominating and possessing Russia. :rolleyes:


Great article...I couldn't have proven my point better.
Or prove it at all, for that matter. First, you take Medvedev's word at face value. Not smart. Russia always blames external forces for their aggression (or did you believe Stalin, Brezhnev and Gorby, too?). Medvedev is lying when he says "The attempts to enlarge Nato's military infrastructure are not ceasing." NATO expansion is about permitting new states to petition, not expansion of NATO's military resources. The member nations' defense budgets continue to shrink, and the only innovation that's been proposed are missile defense shields, which have no offensive capability, and which Obama was prepared to abandon in return for concessions on Iran's nuclear program, which Russia is assisting with. This is only provacative to Russia if Russia intends to use its missiles against its neighbors. And why would Russia want to do that? Simple. You said it yourself, as did Medvedev, because "Nato of once again encroaching on Moscow's sphere of influence in the former Soviet Union," but that's only applicable if you accept the premise that Moscow has a right to a "sphere of influence" and that the nations within it have no say in the matter. Ukraine, Poland, the Baltic Republics and Georgia have been part of the Russian sphere of influence before and are anxious to avoid a repetition, which is why they want to join NATO. If anything, NATO is the reluctant party here, since they're dragging their feet on new admissions and trying desperately not to offend the supplier of their natural gas. What it really comes down to is this: Russia objects to its former slave states entering alliances which make them less vulnerable to Russian bullying, so they're rattling their rusting sabers and threatening to polish them up to a high gloss. Reagan's response would have been to go ahead with SDI and make their offensive weapons obsolete. I have no idea what Obama will do, but then, his most likely course of action will be to capitulate, so you'll get your wish. Of course, when that capitulation leads to other demands and more capitulation, will you admit that you were wrong, or will it take a nuke detonating in your backyard to make you realize that we can no longer hide behind two oceans?


You miss his point!
If we never leave the US then no-one will ever get mad at us. :rolleyes:
As long as the rest of the world can see how we live, they will resent and envy us. The Jihadis from failed states cannot accept the example of a successful one that isn't an Islamist paradise, so they will have to destroy us, and they will villify us and slander us while attacking us at any perceived point of vulnerability. There's a reason that the jihadis targeted a Marriott in Mumbai. It's a US company, and even if no one working there was an American, it was still an attack on the most visible example of American economic success in the area. As long as we do business overseas, we can't simply retreat within our borders.

Molon Labe
03-18-2009, 11:32 AM
I can sum up your argument in one sentence: Because it's far away, it can't hurt us.

Oversimplification and incorrect analysis.

To me, there's more to security than making binding security contracts with Russia's border states. (How'd that binding security contract work out for Poland during WW2) No...I'm not saying being "remote" means there is no threat. I'm also not saying Russian nukes aren't a threat. Sure... it does factor in, but let's put it into perspective. I am saying the Russian military is not what it once was. What Russia is and what the Soviets were are two very different things. Too many people are duped into believing that the way the allies failed to handle Nazi Germany in the 30's, and just because we corrected that in the way we handled the Soviets, is the blueprint with how you should handle all rogue states....and any thing otherwise is the equivalent of appeasement. Based on the recent news of Russia beginning to modernize it's military, looks as though the blueprint you follow isn't working either. Didn't Churchill say no matter the beauty of the strategy, occasionally you should look at "results"


NATO's mission, in the short term, was to contain Soviet communism. In the long term, it was to maintain European stability and prevent future wars on the continent.

NATO never had a "short term" mission. It was the mirror image of the Warsaw pact, and it had one mission...to stop a Soviet invasion...that's all....Period.

Russia is not a revolutionary communist nation.
There are not 1 million Soviet troops threatening W. Europe. (and even if Russia completes it's modernization it will not threaten W. Europe)
Nations like Georgia, Belarus, and Ukraine are liabilities to NATO and don't possess the industry that was vital to U.S. security in W. Europe during the Cold war. They also have no strategic value to the U.S.
The Russian GDP is just a bit larger than Italy and Portugal... I'm not afraid of Italy or Portugal.
The EU's total GDP dwarfs Russia.
Their defense budget is what the U.S spends on it's military research each year and the Russian economy has been tanking since last Summer.
These reports of Russian empire rebirth are the direct result of NATO expansion and upstart little nations sucking up to the West.
No one is seriously thinking of changing U.S. army doctrine back to Cold war doctrine.

BTW in the "long term" NATO has neither maintained European stability nor prevented war. Who seriously believes our security "guarantees" to Ukraine are legitimate?


Europe may seem far away, but Russia's deals with Iran have security implications for us that you continually refuse to see. A nuclear-armed Iran will seek to spread its revolutionary jihad to the infidel west, and while it may not seem like our fight right now, it certainly will be after Europe falls.

Of course there are security implications with a nuclear armed Iran, but didn't our own Intelligence estimate say there is no threat? Just who do you listen to? Whoever is convenient it seems. If Iran was in my back yard I'd probably make a deal with the devil too. If the U.S. was serious about proliferation then we would have worked for this years ago.

What's prohibiting Iran and other Islamic sects from exporting Jihad without the nuclear gambit? Nothing.
Europe is quite capable of handling this themselves. Even if you look at it from a balance of power perspective and assume that Russia and Iran wishes to dominate the region, and as I said before, the EU is much stronger economically and would surely be able to handle them.

Don't you think it's time to quit thinking that every war is an American problem? Maybe if we weren't coddling Europe so much and letting them freeride on our military coat tails, they might take their own security seriously. Do we have to completely bankrupt the American people in order to protect everyone with a problem? I'm beginning to see the points some have made about your inability to see that the game isn't worth the candle. Soul Searching is healthy now and then. It seems that your perfectly willing to let just about every nation on earth slide by on the backs of the American taxpayer and military dependancy.


The US hasn't done a thing to Venezuela. Why are they doing that if they're intent is solely to bully their neighbors?

Chavez is a Marxist goon. I'm more willing to entertain a more aggressive security plan against him. The "little mouse that roars" in my own hemisphere means more to U.S. security than Russians do. If he want's to cozy up to Russia or an impotent Castro, then we can deal with him directly. His bluster is much more about his own security issues of Venezuela and locking himself in power at home than it is about him bent on domination.
You really aren't so naive to believe that "America" and the federal government are the same thing? Our federal government isn't the bastion of good intentions and innovation that the American people represent. It's a really good idea to learn to separate the two.


NATO's mission, in the short term, was to contain Soviet communism. In the long term, it was to maintain European stability and prevent future wars on the continent. That mission remains valid, and the best way to accomplish it is to take in the Russian border states that seek to avoid returning to Russia's domination, while also combining those elements in Europe that seek to avoid Islamic domination and strengthening them against that threat, which is a far greater danger to us. Otherwise, I see NATO collapsing in a few years, not because of Russia, but because the increasing Islamic populations of European member states will make defense cooperation with the US unworkable. We can maintain defense agreements with a German Federal Republic, but not with an Islamic Republic of Germany that sees itself as a strategic partner with nuclear-armed Iran and Pakistan against the infidel. That's the future that we have to avoid, unless you're willing to see the US standing alone against a global caliphate.

The "best way" is debatable. Based on your post, sounds to me as if the inevitable collapse of Europe to Islam is imminent regardless of NATO or our intervention, but it really just sounds more like fearmongering bordering on tinfoil.
Let's assume the scenario is correct. If Europe is too pansy to stop the Islamic political and cultural transformation, what is a conventional security institution like NATO going to do about it? I mean...if this is true, European stupidity is a lost cause. What's America's role supossed to be if Europe doesn't give a damn.

I'll give you one for seeing Europe as the main battlefield... but not a conventional battlefield one. 9-11 was planned and orchestrated in Europe in apartments...but who would suggest invade Germany and Spain where it was planned out. NATO sure isn't the solution or framework for this battle.


His head is in the sand, like many peoples', but let's hope that they take a look around them before the chaos gets too close to defeat.

It's bad FP advisors like the Neocons that have gotten FP so wrong for so long. It's not that a fear of Islam is not without cause, but rather it's the inability to see the threat in any other framework than one requiring mass mobilizations of U.S forces in every corner of the earth where there is instability. The very nature of the international politics is caos.....get used to it.

By calling for a belligerent all encompassing foreign policy that sees a bugaboo behind every Muslim or Russian and seeks to establish footholds and security implications in every region on earth, you do nothing. Basically it's trying to defend everywhere you defend nowhere. By reordering multilateral institutions that exclude Russia all you do is breed hostility and resentment...just look at the news. That's isolationism.


Or prove it at all, for that matter. First, you take Medvedev's word at face value. Not smart.

Sorry.....I wasn't the one posting the article as "evidence". Does everyone lie to you? Who are we to believe?


As long as the rest of the world can see how we live, they will resent and envy us.
Those 700 plus military installations and the one in Saudi had nothing to do with it. Cept all the writings and speeches of the imams suggest they are the main reason for Jihad against the west.
Yep...they've mobilized a million radicals because we eat Big Macs, watch Jenna Jamison DVDs , drink beer and throw up during the Superbowl. :rolleyes:

Khomeini tried that during the 80's for just that rationale an couldn't garner support for worldwide Jihad. It took a tangible reason to garner what's occuring today

Odysseus
03-18-2009, 04:49 PM
Oversimplification and incorrect analysis.
In your view, certainly, but to those of us who actually


To me, there's more to security than making binding security contracts with Russia's border states. (How'd that binding security contract work out for Poland during WW2) No...I'm not saying being "remote" means there is no threat. I'm also not saying Russian nukes aren't a threat. Sure... it does factor in, but let's put it into perspective. I am saying the Russian military is not what it once was. What Russia is and what the Soviets were are two very different things. Too many people are duped into believing that the way the allies failed to handle Nazi Germany in the 30's, and just because we corrected that in the way we handled the Soviets, is the blueprint with how you should handle all rogue states....and any thing otherwise is the equivalent of appeasement. Based on the recent news of Russia beginning to modernize it's military, looks as though the blueprint you follow isn't working either. Didn't Churchill say no matter the beauty of the strategy, occasionally you should look at "results"
Except that we're not following our blueprint, now are we? It's one thing to speak softly and carry a big stick, but to speak softly as you throw away the stick is simply a goad to our enemies. Oh, we talk enough about security arrangements, or used to before Obama started his Kumbaya chorus, but in fact, we've done very little of what we promised. Poland lacks a missile defense shield and Obama is considering scrapping it. Would the Russians modernize their missiles if there were a credible defense against them, or would they be forced to acknowledge that they can no longer use them as a threat? Russia, whether Soviet, Czarist or Putinist, always pursued its own agenda, and if you look at the history of Eastern Europe, that agenda becomes clear. Russia always sought to dominate the Baltic states (for the access to the Baltic Sea and northern Europe), Poland (as a buffer against Germany and the rest of Western Europe) and the Crimea (with the goal of establishing warm water ports). None of that has changed, but now oil has become a factor as well. Thus, the Russians seek to restrict European access to oil and natural gas so that they can monopolize the markets (which is a given for a kleptocracy such as Putin's Russia). Empowering Iran destabilizes energy markets and drives up the value of Russian reserves. Unfortunately, it also means that a totalitarian regime that seeks to expand its Islamic revolution, and which loathes western democracies, gets to play with nuclear weapons. Russia's goal is myopic and destructive beyond their ability to fathom, and must be opposed.


NATO never had a "short term" mission. It was the mirror image of the Warsaw pact, and it had one mission...to stop a Soviet invasion...that's all....Period.

Except that you've got it backwards. NATO came about in response to the Soviet closure of the borders with the west and the buildup of military forces in what would soon become the Warsaw Pact, which came after, and was primarily a propaganda move to create the impression that its Eastern European satellites were signatories to a pact, rather than slaves under marching orders. And even though the Soviet Union collapsed, Russia remains, and it continues to pursue the same goals and policies.


Russia is not a revolutionary communist nation.
No, it's a kleptocratic oligarchy, in which many of the same players under communism are still in charge.

There are not 1 million Soviet troops threatening W. Europe. (and even if Russia completes it's modernization it will not threaten W. Europe)
And you know that it will not threaten W. Europe because...? The Russian army is about 750,000 strong, with reserves numbering about twice that. They continue to conscript troops and have never stepped down from their war footing.

Nations like Georgia, Belarus, and Ukraine are liabilities to NATO and don't possess the industry that was vital to U.S. security in W. Europe during the Cold war. They also have no strategic value to the U.S.
Again, in your opinion. Georgia, Belarus and Ukraine have no less industry than Germany and France did at the end of WWII (more, in some ways, since Germany was bombed flat), and Poland and the Baltic states do have industries. As for strategic value, Georgia sits astride the Caucasus Mountain range within easy access of the Middle East oilfields and Afghanistan. Bases there would provide easy access for our aircraft that are going to continue to be engaged there, as well as logistics sites which can support our operations there, not to mention close proximity to Iran. Missile interceptors there would protect most of Europe. Ukraine is a natural barrier between Russia and the rest of Europe and has access to the Mediterranean Sea through the Crimea. As for Belarus, they haven't asked to join.

The Russian GDP is just a bit larger than Italy and Portugal... I'm not afraid of Italy or Portugal.
Italy and Portugal aren't totalitarian regimes that are bent on regaining their former glory as their economies and populations implode.

The EU's total GDP dwarfs Russia.

Their defense budget is what the U.S spends on it's military research each year and the Russian economy has been tanking since last Summer.
And, naturally, economic chaos never precedes political instability and military conflict, right?

These reports of Russian empire rebirth are the direct result of NATO expansion and upstart little nations sucking up to the West.
No one is seriously thinking of changing U.S. army doctrine back to Cold war doctrine.
Those "upstart little nations" have been around longer than we have, and they are coming to us for security because they are frightened of Russian intentions. Instead of ridiculing them, you should be asking what they know that you don't.

BTW in the "long term" NATO has neither maintained European stability nor prevented war. Who seriously believes our security "guarantees" to Ukraine are legitimate?
NATO prevented war on the European continent from 1947 through 1992. That's one of the longest peaces in European history. As for not believing our security guarantees, under this administration, you're right, but that isn't an argument against alliances, it's an argument against giving feckless liberals any power.

Of course there are security implications with a nuclear armed Iran, but didn't our own Intelligence estimate say there is no threat? Just who do you listen to? Whoever is convenient it seems. If Iran was in my back yard I'd probably make a deal with the devil too. If the U.S. was serious about proliferation then we would have worked for this years ago.
How would we have worked it? Through the UN? Unilaterally, through negotiations? Through military action? You complain about my sources, but you seem to live in this libertarian fantasy world where we can close the borders, stick our heads in the sand and wish away our problems. Come to think of it, you didn't vote for Obama, did you?

Odysseus
03-18-2009, 04:50 PM
Continued


What's prohibiting Iran and other Islamic sects from exporting Jihad without the nuclear gambit? Nothing.
Europe is quite capable of handling this themselves. Even if you look at it from a balance of power perspective and assume that Russia and Iran wishes to dominate the region, and as I said before, the EU is much stronger economically and would surely be able to handle them.
The jihad in Europe is being advanced daily. Disparate birthrates and immigration are producing what will shortly be a Moslem majority in most European states, while internal disruptions have cowed the political classes into one concession after another. The real problem with NATO, as I stated previously, is not whether it can defeat the jihad, but how we will respond to a majority Moslem state as a member, and how that will effect our security.

Maybe if we weren't coddling Europe so much and letting them freeride on our military coat tails, they might take their own security seriously.

That's the first intelligent argument that you have made. Unfortunately, it's about four decades too late. Europeans no longer have the will to defend themselves, and they certainly won't defend us when push comes to shove. However, we are still dealing with threats in that part of the world, and we need to be able to project power there.


Do we have to completely bankrupt the American people in order to protect everyone with a problem? I'm beginning to see the points some have made about your inability to see that the game isn't worth the candle. Soul Searching is healthy now and then. It seems that your perfectly willing to let just about every nation on earth slide by on the backs of the American taxpayer and military dependancy.
Defense appropriations are about 2% of GDP. That won't bankrupt us. The stimulus, however, will, but that's another issue. Now, just who are you claiming made those points about me? Gator, perhaps?


Chavez is a Marxist goon. I'm more willing to entertain a more aggressive security plan against him. The "little mouse that roars" in my own hemisphere means more to U.S. security than Russians do. If he want's to cozy up to Russia or an impotent Castro, then we can deal with him directly. His bluster is much more about his own security issues of Venezuela and locking himself in power at home than it is about him bent on domination.
Except that it isn't. He's been using his oil revenues to bankroll marxist entities throughout Latin America, resulting in leftist electoral wins in El Salvador (yes, the FMLN is back) and Nicuaragua (and Danny Ortega, too), as well as providing Russian arms to FARC and the narcotraficantes in Colombia. That instability is a chain of dominoes that connects to us through Mexico, which is struggling with its own insurgencies, both drug cartels and various pretenders to government overthrow (the Zapatistas, for example).

The "best way" is debatable. Based on your post, sounds to me as if the inevitable collapse of Europe to Islam is imminent regardless of NATO or our intervention, but it really just sounds more like fearmongering bordering on tinfoil.
Let's assume the scenario is correct. If Europe is too pansy to stop the Islamic political and cultural transformation, what is a conventional security institution like NATO going to do about it? I mean...if this is true, European stupidity is a lost cause. What's America's role supossed to be if Europe doesn't give a damn.
I'll give you one for seeing Europe as the main battlefield... but not a conventional battlefield one. 9-11 was planned and orchestrated in Europe in apartments...but who would suggest invade Germany and Spain where it was planned out. NATO sure isn't the solution or framework for this battle.
The invasion of Europe began decades ago. It's now in full swing, as militant Islamists already dominate key areas, such as the urban parts of France, Germany, Belgium, Sweden and even Britain. Europe's response is to ratchet up the appeasement, allowing sharia courts, for example, while pretending that they won't be overwelmed by Islamist immigration. Look at the demographic shifts in California, where Latinos now outnumber everyone else in Los Angeles and Orange County. That was done the same way, only the Latinos weren't animated by violent religious dogma that demanded that they subjugate non-Latinos and impose Spanish culture on them.

It's bad FP advisors like the Neocons that have gotten FP so wrong for so long. It's not that a fear of Islam is not without cause, but rather it's the inability to see the threat in any other framework than one requiring mass mobilizations of U.S forces in every corner of the earth where there is instability. The very nature of the international politics is chaos.....get used to it.

By calling for a belligerent all encompassing foreign policy that sees a bugaboo behind every Muslim or Russian and seeks to establish footholds and security implications in every region on earth, you do nothing. Basically it's trying to defend everywhere you defend nowhere. By reordering multilateral institutions that exclude Russia all you do is breed hostility and resentment...just look at the news. That's isolationism.
I'm not trying to defend everywhere, I'm defending US interests, which are far greater than you care to admit.

Sorry.....I wasn't the one posting the article as "evidence". Does everyone lie to you? Who are we to believe?
Ah, but you cited the article as making your case. And Medvedev, like all Russian leaders of the last century, is less than candid. But, I suppose that accusing me of paranoia is easier than answering my argument, which is that the missile shield is only provocative if you intend to use missiles as a tool of your foreign policy. No rebuttal? Didn't think so.


Those 700 plus military installations and the one in Saudi had nothing to do with it. Cept all the writings and speeches of the imams suggest they are the main reason for Jihad against the west.
Yep...they've mobilized a million radicals because we eat Big Macs, watch Jenna Jamison DVDs , drink beer and throw up during the Superbowl. :rolleyes:
Actually, the Jenna Jamison DVDs and the Superbowl are part of it. What you may not realize is that Bin Laden approached the Saudi royal family after Saddam invaded Kuwait and proposed that his jihadi army, fresh from Afghanistan, be used as the primary defense of the kingdom. He was rebuffed, and the Saudis went with American backing. No US Soldier ever set foot in Mecca or Medina, and Osama never had a problem with US petroleum engineers and building contractors in Saudi Arabia, just US troops, and only after his overture was rebuffed. The Arab world is a litany of failures. With all of the money at their disposal, the various oil regimes have accomplished nothing for their own people. They provide them with welfare, but not opportunity. They are trapped a host of cultural and political tyrannies that deprive them of any hope for a better future, and they blame everyone but themselves for it. Then, they point to the west, through our movies and TV programs, which highlight our military, economic, social and political successes and they hate us for not being as backwards, repressed, inept, lethargic and insular as they are. Jenna Jamison is a slap in the face to every Moslem male who will never marry, never know a woman and never have any hope of sexual release until he martyrs himself and then has his 72 virgins. The Islamic world is motivated by a jealousy and envy that we cannot fathom because we are a successful, vibrant nation that doesn't need scapegoats to function.


Khomeini tried that during the 80's for just that rationale an couldn't garner support for worldwide Jihad. It took a tangible reason to garner what's occuring today
Gee, Khomeini fanned hatred of the US in the 80s, and because the jihad didn't spring from the ground in one fell swoop, he failed? Take the long view. Iran began waging war against the entire west in 1979. The started with one nation, which sought to create a fundamentalist Islamic state. The rest of the Arab world was ruled by secular Ba'athists or monarchies, but within a generation, those governments are threatened by what? Fundamentalist Islamic revolutions. Just because it didn't happen overnight doesn't mean that it isn't happening. If you want to keep your head in the sand, so be it, but those of us who can see above it can see the oncoming train wreck. Twenty years from now, you should re-read these exchanges to see just how wrong you were.

PoliCon
03-18-2009, 05:37 PM
these super long posts are more than my ADD can handle . . . .

asdf2231
03-18-2009, 05:39 PM
these super long posts are more than my ADD can handle . . . .

Yeah. Seriously Odysseus, can you include some crayon drawings or a You Tube link to a puppet show?

:D

(On Edit)

In all seriousness I copied and pasted your arguments here into a word document because I want to mail them to a friend whose BIL is a bonehead isolationist.

Well done Major!

PoliCon
03-18-2009, 05:43 PM
Yeah. Seriously Odysseus, can you include some crayon drawings or a You Tube link to a puppet show?

:D

SOMETHING! They totally took an interesting discussion and - oooh something shiny . . . .

Odysseus
03-19-2009, 09:18 AM
Yeah. Seriously Odysseus, can you include some crayon drawings or a You Tube link to a puppet show?

:D

(On Edit)

In all seriousness I copied and pasted your arguments here into a word document because I want to mail them to a friend whose BIL is a bonehead isolationist.

Well done Major!
Thanks. That's a real compliment.
I don't do crayons much since I got Photoshop, but I'll post my PowerPoint! Ranger tab one of these days. :D

SOMETHING! They totally took an interesting discussion and - oooh something shiny . . . .
My avatar is a gold oak leaf. What more do you want? :D

Molon Labe
03-19-2009, 12:00 PM
Sorry Odysseus......The best policy analysis I find tends to be the realist perspective. I don't entertain this Project for the New American Century bunk anymore. I've spent the last few years trying to get the dog crap taste out of my mouth.

I'm still a die hard "Realist" at heart in FP matters.
Old Cold war habits die hard I guess.

I won't bother posting something no one has the intent of criticizing beyond ad hominem.
If you have the inclination.

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-611.pdf

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-608.pdf

Odysseus
03-19-2009, 03:09 PM
Sorry Odysseus......The best policy analysis I find tends to be the realist perspective. I don't entertain this Project for the New American Century bunk anymore. I've spent the last few years trying to get the dog crap taste out of my mouth.

I'm still a die hard "Realist" at heart in FP matters.
Old Cold war habits die hard I guess.

I won't bother posting something no one has the intent of criticizing beyond ad hominem.
If you have the inclination.

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-611.pdf

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-608.pdf

The best policy analysis that you can find is being written for you in this thread, unless you've got a secret clearance. Also, if you want to avoid ad hominem attacks, you might want to avoid phrases like "trying to get the dog crap taste out of my mouth" or labeling every argument that you dislike as "neocon" this or "neocon" that. Notice that I actually answer your arguments. I'll admit that I'm not as civil as I could be, but I tend to respond in kind, rather than initiate it.

Molon Labe
03-19-2009, 05:56 PM
The best policy analysis that you can find is being written for you in this thread, unless you've got a secret clearance. Also, if you want to avoid ad hominem attacks, you might want to avoid phrases like "trying to get the dog crap taste out of my mouth" or labeling every argument that you dislike as "neocon" this or "neocon" that. Notice that I actually answer your arguments. I'll admit that I'm not as civil as I could be, but I tend to respond in kind, rather than initiate it.


I wasn't refering to you. Hint: See all the "bellyfeel" bullet comments peppering the thread. Do you take them as serious consideration and argument? If you do......'shrug'
I felt you would at least be inclined.

And in reference to PNAC.
I've been studying FP for most of my life. That doesn't make me right, but I understand enough about it to know where I can get good analysis and where not to.

And....You're right. I wasn't trying to make any "nice" points or discuss anything worthy of analysis about them. They don't do analysis. They're much more content to master propaganda than FP. All the serious intellectuals jumped ship during the 2nd Bush run.... like Fukuyama. (I still respect him and his writings...too bad he learned too late)

I think "dog crap taste" is the appropriate expression to describe what it has been like to have come from believing what that worthless wonder of a "think tank" where analysis is in short supply really stands for. If you remember, I once believed as you do.
I've never suggested you've been less than willing to "discuss" FP. We just don't agree and I am also quite comfortable I've been more than willing to argue on merit. All of us slip into a less than civil attitude from time to time. I certainly don't hold your arrogance or slip ups against you.......and if I have any type of clearance, I doubt I'll be retching it out on an internet discussion board.

If you truly believe I'm less worthy to engage....Oh well....

PoliCon
03-19-2009, 06:12 PM
http://www.globalsecuritynewswire.org/gsn/nw_20090317_2272.php

nope. Russia posess no threat what ever to us. Nope. None at all.

Molon Labe
03-24-2009, 03:15 PM
http://www.globalsecuritynewswire.org/gsn/nw_20090317_2272.php

nope. Russia posess no threat what ever to us. Nope. None at all.

check!


http://www.ericmargolis.com/political_commentaries/russia-big-threat-or-paper-bear.aspx


Gorbachev’s agreement with Washington to withdraw the Red Army from the protective glacis of Eastern Europe in exchange for NATO’s agreement not to advance east


Scaremongers who warn of a new Russian military threat should do the math and study maps. Russia spent $40 billion last year on defense. Medvedev’s planned increases – if they ever materialize – will increase military spending to $52 billion.

The United States will spend US $741 billion on its military this year. Add another $54 billion for the department of Homeland Security

Odysseus
03-24-2009, 04:54 PM
And....You're right. I wasn't trying to make any "nice" points or discuss anything worthy of analysis about them. They don't do analysis. They're much more content to master propaganda than FP. All the serious intellectuals jumped ship during the 2nd Bush run.... like Fukuyama. (I still respect him and his writings...too bad he learned too late)

I think "dog crap taste" is the appropriate expression to describe what it has been like to have come from believing what that worthless wonder of a "think tank" where analysis is in short supply really stands for. If you remember, I once believed as you do.
I've never suggested you've been less than willing to "discuss" FP. We just don't agree and I am also quite comfortable I've been more than willing to argue on merit. All of us slip into a less than civil attitude from time to time. I certainly don't hold your arrogance or slip ups against you.......and if I have any type of clearance, I doubt I'll be retching it out on an internet discussion board.

If you truly believe I'm less worthy to engage....Oh well....
So we won't be taking this to SIPR, then? Too bad. Lots of good products that might enlighten, but there are lots of good products on the NIPR side, as well. Unfortunately, Eric Margolis isn't my idea of a viable source. Had you read some of his other columns, you'd have found this little gem:


The term `terrorism’ is designed not only to arouse potent emotions of fear and loathing, but to dehumanize one’s foes and deny them any legitimate motivations. Israel successfully deployed this effective propaganda weapon against the Palestinians, who all too often eagerly cooperated by staging murderous attacks on civilians. The `terrorism’ theme was then wholly adopted by the Bush administration.

`Terrorists’ are sub-humans. Terrorists are a disease. One can never negotiate with them. Only eradicate them. Even their children are legitimate targets. The laws of humanity and war do not apply to `terrorists.’

Slapping this label on all who oppose the US and its allies proved highly effective psy-war propaganda, but it totally distorted reality. I always avoided using `terrorism,’ which became the most cherished word in the Bush administration’s version of George Orwell’s totalitarian `Doublespeak.’

The proper term we should use is `anti-western groups’ or `antigovernment forces,’ not `terrorists. The US, which burned alive 100,000 Japanese civilians in one night during the fire bomb raids against Tokyo on 9 March, 1945, killed two million Vietnamese civilians, and is responsible for 500,000 to one million Iraqi civilian deaths, is in no position to brand others `terrorists.’

So, in Margolis' world, terrorism doesn't exist, except when it's perpetrated by the US during wartime, while Palestinians who deliberately target non-combatants were simply cooperating with the description of them, which apparently preceded their inclination to murder civilians.

Margolis is a blame-America-first crank. I'd think twice before citing him as a source of information.

hampshirebrit
03-24-2009, 06:24 PM
..Europe's response is to ratchet up the appeasement...

I wish this was not so, but I am forced by recent events concerning a Dutch parliamentarian being refused entry to the UK, to concede that it is.

I'm trying to look on the bright side ... next year, 10 years of socialist governmental mismanagement will come to an end, and we will finally get a conservative leadership in place.

Odysseus
03-24-2009, 06:32 PM
I wish this was not so, but I am forced by recent events concerning a Dutch parliamentarian being refused entry to the UK, to concede that it is.

I'm trying to look on the bright side ... next year, 10 years of socialist governmental mismanagement will come to an end, and we will finally get a conservative leadership in place.

I envy you. We've got three years and ten months of this administration. Of course, we had eight years of relatively benign government before that, but that followed eight years of Clinton. I plan to hide behind my couch for most of it.
http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-scared004.gif (http://www.freesmileys.org)

PoliCon
03-24-2009, 09:44 PM
I envy you. We've got three years and ten months of this administration. Of course, we had eight years of relatively benign government before that, but that followed eight years of Clinton. I plan to hide behind my couch for most of it.
http://www.freesmileys.org/smileys/smiley-scared004.gif (http://www.freesmileys.org)

you're overlooking the midterms. Don't forget the potential we have to shift things in 2010.

Molon Labe
03-25-2009, 07:01 AM
So we won't be taking this to SIPR, then? Too bad. Lots of good products that might enlighten, but there are lots of good products on the NIPR side, as well. Unfortunately, Eric Margolis isn't my idea of a viable source. Had you read some of his other columns, you'd have found this little gem:



So, in Margolis' world, terrorism doesn't exist, except when it's perpetrated by the US during wartime, while Palestinians who deliberately target non-combatants were simply cooperating with the description of them, which apparently preceded their inclination to murder civilians.

Margolis is a blame-America-first crank. I'd think twice before citing him as a source of information.

No. Margolis is someone who thinks about how others view our actions. Don't give me that Libtard hogwash about "blame America first". I don't deal in platitudes. Who's dealing in ad hominems today? :rolleyes:

Odysseus
03-25-2009, 08:45 AM
you're overlooking the midterms. Don't forget the potential we have to shift things in 2010.
I'm not overlooking them, but we've still got the better part of four years to go with this administration.

No. Margolis is someone who thinks about how others view our actions. Don't give me that Libtard hogwash about "blame America first". I don't deal in platitudes. Who's dealing in ad hominems today? :rolleyes:
In this case, the ad hominem is justified. Margolis elevates the views of others over reality. He blames America for the Israeli war against Hamas (more specifically, he blames Bush), as though Hamas weren't lobbing rockets over the border, and in particularly vile language:


It now seems clear the last disastrous act of the Bush administration was giving Israel a green light to launch its final solution campaign against the Hamas government in Gaza.

Then there's this comment, on the India/Pakistan conflict:


The respected US strategic think tank, RAND Corp, estimated that a nuclear exchange between India and Pakistan would initially kill two million people, wound 100 million, and send clouds of radioactive dust around the globe.
The US and India were delighted.

I don't know anyone who is "delighted" at the thought of two million deaths, one hundred million casualties and radioactive clouds spanning the globe, but apparently, Margolis thinks that we're chomping at the bit to unleash nuclear armageddon.

Oh, and he can't even keep his story straight on Russia. In a column on Georgia/South Ossetia, he writes:


In an act fraught with danger, US and NATO warships are delivering supplies to Georgia, watched by Russian men of war. The US Congress may soon vote $1 billion for America’s embattled Georgian satellite.

The Western powers have resorted to fierce Cold War rhetoric. They are playing with fire. Russia has some 6,600 strategic nuclear weapons, mostly aimed at North America and Europe. Besides, the US, which invaded Afghanistan and Iraq, and whose air force just killed 90 Afghan civilians, 60 of them children, is in no position to lecture Moscow about aggression.

(BTW, the trope about US forces killing children is standard libtard rhetoric, but you'd never say that, would you?) But, when it's time to mollify our legitimate concern about the resurgence of Russian imperial ambitions, he writes:


According to Russia’s defense minister, Anatoli Serdyukov, only 10% of Russia’s current arms can be considered modern. The rest are outdated or obsolescent. His figures appear accurate. Serdyukov hopes to raise to 30% the number of modern weapons by 2015, provided Russia’s economy, badly battered by the nosedive in oil prices, can afford it. That remains in doubt.

So, when we are supporting a nation that wants to be out from under Putin's thumb, we're playing with fire, but when somebody notices that Russia is expanding and modernizing its military and has a history of using that military to subdue neighboring states and force them into its orbit, they're harmless. That kind of inconsistency usually implies a less than candid appraisal of the facts, and an ideological bias. In Margolis' case, every column attacks US policies, makes excuses for the conduct of terrorists (to the point of even condemning the use of the word "terrorist") and justifies the policies of everyone who opposes the Bush administration, no matter how odious. And you cite this guy as a viable source? Get real.

Molon Labe
03-25-2009, 11:18 AM
In this case, the ad hominem is justified. Margolis elevates the views of others over reality. He blames America for the Israeli war against Hamas (more specifically, he blames Bush), as though Hamas weren't lobbing rockets over the border, and in particularly vile language: And you cite this guy as a viable source? Get real.

I can completely relate to how you must feel. I doubt it would be much good to post any serious analysis papers in this thread above articles by pundits. Seems to be others such as myself that suffer the ADD.
But, who then should I cite? David Frum,, Richard Perle, Elliot Abrams, Bill Kristol, ....maybe Donald Kagan? Seems I can find no sense of real analysis from these gents. Could it be that we believe who we wish to believe?

If our own CIA is objective and smart enough to understand the blowback principle and no one labels them "blame America first", then I can hear something similar from one of the few respected journalists left.

Let's concentrate on the article at hand. It's about Russia.... The thread is about Russia and in this case his points about the Russian military and NATO expansion are right on.
You're slipping....usually you'll at least present points on the fallacy of the argument. If all you've got is he's an anti American, then 'Yawn'.

I'm objective enough to know when someone has done his homework on the the so called potential "threat" of Russia. While you stagger to come up with why we should be scared of Russia, the Chinese who hold our currency by the balls and actually have an economy of their own, and could man 20 million men in arms without a hiccup are where the real FP challenge is. China can quite well contain the Russian's without our help.

And you're right. Maybe I should have cited someone with better FP credentials such as Ted Galen Carpenter, Chalmers Johnson or better yet someone who's defined the FP terms over the last 20 years like Francis Fukuyama. He's seemed to come to his senses of late:

On Bush:

It was bad enough that he launched an unnecessary war and undermined the standing of the United States throughout the world in his first term. In the waning days of his administration, he is presiding over a collapse of the American financial system and broader economy that will have consequences for years to come. As a general rule, democracies don’t work well if voters do not hold political parties accountable for failure.......America has been living in a dream world for the past few years, losing its basic values of thrift and prudence and living far beyond its means, even as it has lectured the rest of the world to follow its model.

Odysseus
03-25-2009, 06:01 PM
I can completely relate to how you must feel. I doubt it would be much good to post any serious analysis papers in this thread above articles by pundits. Seems to be others such as myself that suffer the ADD.
But, who then should I cite? David Frum,, Richard Perle, Elliot Abrams, Bill Kristol, ....maybe Donald Kagan? Seems I can find no sense of real analysis from these gents. Could it be that we believe who we wish to believe?
No problem. Perle and Abrams don't do a lot for me, so you can look them up on your own, and while I like David Frum on most issues, he's not a Foreign Policy or intel pro. Donald Kagan has his own website, but I suspect that you mean Robert Kagan, his son, who is writes extensively on contemporary political and national security issues (Donald Kagan is a professor of classics, his latest book on the Pelopenesian War is terrific, and I firmly believe that the study of classical warfare provides us with insights into our own age). For some good Robert Kagan insights, try The End of History: Why the twenty-first century will look like the nineteenth (http://www.tnr.com/story.html?id=ee167382-bd16-4b13-beb7-08effe1a6844), or you can go back to Amazon for some of his books. There's even one edited by William Kristol (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1893554163/qid=1095351458/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl14/104-8079209-5371958?v=glance&s=books&n=507846), so you get a twofer. Now, the guy that you ought to be reading is Ralph Peters. He's a retired intel LTC with extensive humint experience, and his essays for the various service college publications are superb. For Iranian policy and insights, the expert is Michael Ledeen, and for overall Middle East history and culture, you can't go too wrong with Bernard Lewis. Russia is more problematical, because there has been so much written about it, but before you delve into contemporary Russian policy, it helps to know the history. Edward Rutherfurd's novel, Russka, provides a good overview of Russian history in a fictional setting, then follow that up with some Solzhenitsyn and Robert Conquest and you get a good concept of the continuity of the Russian national character through each kind of autocracy.


If our own CIA is objective and smart enough to understand the blowback principle and no one labels them "blame America first", then I can hear something similar from one of the few respected journalists left.
Let's concentrate on the article at hand. It's about Russia.... The thread is about Russia and in this case his points about the Russian military and NATO expansion are right on.
You're slipping....usually you'll at least present points on the fallacy of the argument. If all you've got is he's an anti American, then 'Yawn'.
Okay, then let's quote Noam Chomsky and Ramsey Clark, while we're at it. If I'm not permitted to point out that Margolis' partisanship renders his entire argument suspect, then why bother discussing it at all? Margolis is no more respected than Keith Olbermann. He's motivated by the same animus and it shows, but if you want me to do the post-mortem on his arguments, I'll oblige.

First, Margolis cites no hard numbers except for those from the Russian defense ministry, taking their claim of a decrepit military at face value, when in a column written only a few months before, he argues the exact opposite position, that Russia is too dangerous to antagonize because of its 6,600 nuclear warheads. Either Russia is a threat, or it isn't, but it can't be both at the same time. Margolis is being disingenuous when he tries to have it both ways.

Second, Margolis claims, without any attribution to any source, that Russia is afraid of Chinese militarism. Whether or not this is valid, it doesn't justify Russia's heavy-handed tactics on its western border, where they are attacking nations for accepting a missile shield, which is clearly not an expansion of NATO offensive capabilities. Why would a nation that is threatened on its eastern borders by China object to passive defense measures in Eastern Europe which cannot, by their very nature, be a threat to Russia as an independent sovereign state? In fact, the only threat that a missile shield brings to Russia is to curtail Russia's regional hegemonic ambitions and to reduce the value of their nuclear and missile technology exports to Iran.

Third, Gorbachev didn't have an "agreement with Washington to withdraw the Red Army from the protective glacis of Eastern Europe in exchange for NATO’s agreement not to advance east." The Red Army withdrew from Eastern Europe because the Soviet Union collapsed. Margolis is presenting a falsehood as a fact.

Finally, Margolis doesn't mention the fact that Russia is facilitating the Iranian nuclear program and the Iranian ballistic missile program, both of which threaten Europe, and it is for this reason that we are providing anti-missile defenses to those nations most threatened. Obama offered to scrap the missile defenses in return for Russian aid in curtailing the Iranian nuclear program, which prompted the Russian announcement of their upgrade.


I'm objective enough to know when someone has done his homework on the the so called potential "threat" of Russia. While you stagger to come up with why we should be scared of Russia, the Chinese who hold our currency by the balls and actually have an economy of their own, and could man 20 million men in arms without a hiccup are where the real FP challenge is. China can quite well contain the Russian's without our help.
I "stagger" to come up with why we should be scared of Russia? Puh-lease.... A former superpower that still retains its nukes, seeks to restore its hegemony over its former subjects while overseeing internal repression and decline while indulging in external destabilization through technology transfers to rogue states should scare anyone who actually knows the issues. If anything, it's the apologists for Russia's bad behavior who are struggling to justify their bullying and WMD proliferation.

And you're right. Maybe I should have cited someone with better FP credentials such as Ted Galen Carpenter, Chalmers Johnson or better yet someone who's defined the FP terms over the last 20 years like Francis Fukuyama. He's seemed to come to his senses of late
You certainly couldn't have picked a worse choice. Margolis' columns betray an astonishing anti-American bias. It's like asking Kieth Olbermann for a review of... well, anything.

Molon Labe
03-26-2009, 11:35 AM
You certainly couldn't have picked a worse choice. Margolis' columns betray an astonishing anti-American bias. It's like asking Kieth Olbermann for a review of... well, anything.

You know.. the more I think about it and the more I think about Bush's economic policies and how that led to this country thinking it had to elect a bozo called Obama. And how he is pumping trillions of dollars into the economy backed by nothing. The more I think about it the more it really doesn't matter.
It reminds me of John Flynn quote.


The threat to America is not to be found in any foreign capitol, but in Washington, D.C. - John T Flynn

So after Obama thoroughly decimates our economy by essentially tripling the deficit, turning us into a socialist banana republic and devaluing the currency.....and after our economy goes in the tank, and no one buys up our debt anymore, we won't be able to project into Ireland...much less Iran, or Russia.
These are the same things that happened to Japan's in the 90's....the same economic programs....It's really a shame to be watching this.

I'd argue that people like Margolis are more pro American by realizing where the real danger lies and it's the one's that would have us focus elsewhere that need a soul check.

Beck's knows where it's going. He ain't talking about a Russian threat either.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2j8KKoky4xU&feature=PlayList&p=AB94BBA9582FFBC9&index=12

Odysseus
03-26-2009, 02:17 PM
You know.. the more I think about it and the more I think about Bush's economic policies and how that led to this country thinking it had to elect a bozo called Obama. And how he is pumping trillions of dollars into the economy backed by nothing. The more I think about it the more it really doesn't matter.
This is what is called a non-sequitur, which is Latin for "It does not follow." Blaming Obama on Bush is the ultimate in BDS.


It reminds me of John Flynn quote.

The threat to America is not to be found in any foreign capitol, but in Washington, D.C. - John T Flynn
You do quote from the most interesting sources. John T. Flynn was one of the founders of the America First Committee prior to WWII. He opposed the Lend Lease, Selective Service, and just about every other preparation for war that preceded Pearl Harbor. If Flynn had had his way, we'd have left Europe to the Nazis and the Pacific to Japan until it was too late for us to do anything about either.


I'd argue that people like Margolis are more pro American by realizing where the real danger lies and it's the one's that would have us focus elsewhere that need a soul check.

And you would be demonstrably wrong. Margolis is a crank. If, after reading the quotes from his other articles, you still consider him to be a viable source, you're deluding yourself.

Molon Labe
03-26-2009, 03:17 PM
This is what is called a non-sequitur, which is Latin for "It does not follow." Blaming Obama on Bush is the ultimate in BDS.


You do quote from the most interesting sources. John T. Flynn was one of the founders of the America First Committee prior to WWII. He opposed the Lend Lease, Selective Service, and just about every other preparation for war that preceded Pearl Harbor. If Flynn had had his way, we'd have left Europe to the Nazis and the Pacific to Japan until it was too late for us to do anything about either.



And you would be demonstrably wrong. Margolis is a crank. If, after reading the quotes from his other articles, you still consider him to be a viable source, you're deluding yourself.

Odysseus...

I can learn something from anyone. It's disecting what's relevant and what's not. Margolis piece is relevant. Flynn's quote is too. Even the crazy coot with the sign "The end is near" has a nugget of wisdom somewhere.
I hope you don't figure this out the hard way in a few years. I hope we both still have a retirment by then.

Odysseus
03-26-2009, 04:01 PM
Odysseus...

I can learn something from anyone. It's disecting what's relevant and what's not. Margolis piece is relevant. Flynn's quote is too. Even the crazy coot with the sign "The end is near" has a nugget of wisdom somewhere.
I hope you don't figure this out the hard way in a few years. I hope we both still have a retirment by then.

It's only relevent if he's a reliable source of information. If he isn't (and he isn't), then it's just more noise. Flynn's quote was made during a time when Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, not to mention Soviet Russia, were expanding their empires and becoming a global threat. He was wrong when he said it and he would be wrong if he said it today.

I hope to have a retirement also. If not, given the current administration's economic policies and values, especially where human life is concerned, I expect to end up as a bag of Soylent Green. ;)