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Sini #140178 04/09/17 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Sini
Originally Posted by Owain
it is in our national interest to deter the use of chemical weapons in the region.


Can you outline how this could possibly be the case?

Is it in our national interest to encourage the use of chemical weapons anywhere? I cannot imagine that ever being true.


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Sini #140179 04/09/17 02:35 PM
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If Assad did gas his own people, I'm sure he would very much like to blame that upon the rebels, and no doubt has an active disinformation campaign designed for that very purpose.

Further investigation is required, and rather than publishing speculation, the Atlantic might want to work on verification.

Edit: I just noticed that the article is 4 years old, so it probably has nothing to do with the latest incident.

Last edited by Owain; 04/09/17 02:39 PM.

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Sini #140181 04/09/17 06:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Sini
Originally Posted by Owain
That is why we have elections, to sort these things out, and Trump is the man elected for the job.


He run on exactly opposite of what he is doing - explicit election promise to not get involved in more Middle East wars.

They shot some missles, it's not a War. If bombing now means we are at war then we was at war in Libya when Obama had planes bomb them as well.

Wolfgang #140183 04/10/17 12:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Wolfgang
Originally Posted by Sini
Originally Posted by Owain
That is why we have elections, to sort these things out, and Trump is the man elected for the job.


He run on exactly opposite of what he is doing - explicit election promise to not get involved in more Middle East wars.

They shot some missles, it's not a War. If bombing now means we are at war then we was at war in Libya when Obama had planes bomb them as well.


Obama and Hillary absolutely should not have been shooting missiles at Qadafi either. Just because the target is too weak to retaliate doesn't mean that shooting them isn't an act of war.

The logic that says launching military strikes at neutral countries isn't an act of war is on about the same level as the logic that the Founders intended "Arms" to be "muskets" when they penned the 2nd Amendment.

When you weaken one part of the Constitution, you weaken the whole thing.


For who could be free when every other man's humour might domineer over him? - John Locke (2nd Treatise, sect 57)
Owain #140185 04/10/17 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Owain
Edit: I just noticed that the article is 4 years old, so it probably has nothing to do with the latest incident.


Yes, but this demonstrates that at least there is a possibility that chemical weapons could have originated elsewhere other than Assad.


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Owain #140186 04/10/17 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Owain
Originally Posted by Sini
Originally Posted by Owain
it is in our national interest to deter the use of chemical weapons in the region.


Can you outline how this could possibly be the case?

Is it in our national interest to encourage the use of chemical weapons anywhere? I cannot imagine that ever being true.



You are failing to demonstrate your case. There is a third possibility - it neither in nor against our national interests if chemical weapons are used in the middle east.

I really think cost/benefit analysis in this situation is firmly on "do nothing" side. Lets just assume that was Assad's weapons used intentionally. How likely is it that he would conclude civil war, turn around and start attacking US with these chemical weapons? Astronomically unlikely, we have ocean in between and we have nukes. Even if he wanted to do a suicide run, at best he would kill only couple thousands.

Now, what are costs of intervention? We could misread situation due to fog of war. We could accidentally cause regime change, and that will likely lead to genocide. We have seen this unfold with Yazidi, no reason to expect this will turn out differently.

An analogy - Hitler and Vlad the Impaler are waging civil war. What do you do? You know Hitler will start genocide, while Vlad the Impaler will only impale people that challenge his rule. So your real choices are - side with the lesser evil or do nothing.


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Sini #140187 04/10/17 02:11 PM
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We have national interests in the middle east. Anything that serves to destabilize the middle east is against our national interests. The unrestricted use of chemical weapons is a destabilizing force in the middle east.

We have personnel in the middle east. Unrestricted use of chemical weapons in the middle east is a threat to those personnel, and is not in our national interests.

We have allies and alliances in effect in the middle east. Unrestricted use of chemical weapons poses a risk to those allies and alliances, and is not in our national interests.

The United States is a signatory to the Chemical Weapons Convention arms control treaty. It is in our national interest to see that the terms of that treaty are followed by other member states who are also signatories, such as Syria. One of the key features of the treaty is that it prohibits the use of chemical weapons.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chemical_Weapons_Convention

The use of chemical weapons in general is prohibited by international law. It is in the national interest of the United States to support that prohibition under international law.


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Sini #140188 04/10/17 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Sini
Originally Posted by Owain
Edit: I just noticed that the article is 4 years old, so it probably has nothing to do with the latest incident.


Yes, but this demonstrates that at least there is a possibility that chemical weapons could have originated elsewhere other than Assad.

Grasping at a rather feeble straw, aren't we?


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Sini #140189 04/10/17 02:43 PM
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If Sarin was present and only 50 odd people died, that suggests an accident not unrestricted use.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iraqi_chemical_weapons_program#Iran.E2.80.93Iraq_War

When Iraq used mustard, or nerve agents, the casualty tolls were in the thousands not the tens. There is every reason to logically conclude that Syrian Baathist expertise in weapons is similar to that of Iraq at the time. Common sense says that vague reports complimented with profuse hyperbole should be taken with a large grain of salt.

The fact that Syria was incorrectly accused of using chemical weapons in the past is not grasping at straws. They also only entered the chemical weapon agreement in 2013, provisionally, when they turned over at least some of their stockpile. It is indeed possible that they didn't turn over everything, but it is also quite possible that bombings simply ruptured storage units in rebel hands supplied by the Sauds and Qataris. Especially since Syrian regime would be far more likely to deliver chemical weapons via artillery than via bombs.


For who could be free when every other man's humour might domineer over him? - John Locke (2nd Treatise, sect 57)
Sini #140190 04/10/17 03:04 PM
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That was what our response intended to deter. Unrestricted use. If any use results in one getting hammered, unrestricted use is deterred.

It is a feeble excuse if there is no evidence to suggest it in this incident. What evidence have you seen?

But, I suppose that when one is searching for an excuse, any old excuse will do, including that one.

Last edited by Owain; 04/10/17 03:07 PM.

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