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Cicero 01-08-2010 04:08 PM

Here's my tinfoil hat. :tinfoil: Lets think- weren't there some patriot act articles that were supposed to be out of effect as of Jan. 1st? And now they are not? Just a thought- I'm not really saying it was definitely a false flag operation but.....I thought I'd throw that out there. (tail-posting anyway)

richlevy 01-09-2010 02:02 AM

I just heard from Rudy Giuliani that there were no terrorist attempts in the US under Bush, only under Obama:crazy:. Later his press person amended that to mean since 9-11, which was still wrong.

What's the difference between a shoe bomber and an underpants bomber? The difference is that Rudy doesn't count the shoe bomber as an attempted terrorist attack.

Do they really think our attention span is that short? I seriously don't remember liberals undermining Bush this way. We may have questioned his intelligence, but we didn't tell the world that he was weak.

The next election is going to be ugly. The Republicans might have had a shot if they'd stayed near the center. I think they are going to dump Steele and move further to the right into what used to be considered the fringe. The independents are going to have to pick the party they are less disgusted with or stay home.

Meanwhile, Cheney and company are going to be painting a big target on the White House, and by extension the entire country, by telling the world we have a weak president. This may hamper any attempt to try a softer, more comprehensive strategy that might have a chance at success.

A pure military strategy will not work. You can't bomb these people back to the stone age. The hard core are already living in the stone age.

DanaC 01-09-2010 04:24 AM

As to the IRA.

Personally, I think those prisoners were political prisoners. Yes, they committed violent acts. But then so did the British government they were opposed to, and so did their unionist counterparts. I won't sit here and say they did right. It was an ugly time, and both sides engaged in the ugliest kind of conflict.

But they were political prisoners. They weren't just 'criminals' they were soldiers fighting a guerilla war.

The level of support they had in America has been overblown. Mainstream American politicians were very reluctant to offer any kind of moral or political support to them, despite having some sympathy for their cause. I had sympathy for their cause. Didn't make me a supporter.

The worst violence and damage was within NI itself. Both sides of that conflict hurt innocent people and treated ordinary civlians appallingly at times. Then again, for all that they bullied, abused and terrorised the local communities, they also provided something that was at times needed by the Catholic civilians: a 'police force' they could turn to. Because they sure as hell couldn't turn to the actual police.

When it came to the violence on the mainland; the majority of IRA bomb attacks were preceded by warning phonecalls. Bit different to walking onto a plane and blowing yourself up. Apart from the pub bombings ( a very dark chapter) and the Brighton Hotel, most IRA attacks were designed to cause maximum disruption ancd fear with minimum loss of life.

The attacks over here caused distress and fear, but most of all they kept NI in our news and in our minds. If they hadn't been waging that war, we'd have been happy, as a nation to just try and forget what was going on over there. leave it to the politicians. I can't tell you how many times I heard someone say: oh just let the bastards kill each other; leave us out of it.

We were the imperial power. We were supporting/condoning/instrumental in unionist violence and oppression. We were utterly unsympathetic to the plight of the Catholic population, who'd been pushed into an apartheid of sorts.

What is happening now is different. What we have now is a kind of global terrorism. It's a drawing up of lines between extremists and idealists. It is not an oppressed indigenous population attempting to free themselves from an aggressive and overbearing oppressor.

Interesting article about American involvement in the Troubles.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontl...s/america.html


Nowadays, I'd say those who are attempting to continue the fight are terrorists and criminals. They do not have popular support. They are not fulfilling a needed function: they are diehards who refuse to let it go. They are acting against the interests and desires of both sides.

classicman 01-09-2010 08:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by richlevy (Post 625153)
The next election is going to be ugly. The Republicans might have had a shot if they'd stayed near the center. I think they are going to dump Steele and move further to the right into what used to be considered the fringe. The independents are going to have to pick the party they are less disgusted with or stay home.

That sounds pretty much like the last, what 3-4 elections for me. Nothing new there. I think once you discount the hardcore extremists on both sides and those who vote party lines, thats been the attitude of most people for well over a decade, if not longer.
Quote:

Meanwhile, Cheney and company are going to be painting a big target on the White House, and by extension the entire country, by telling the world we have a weak president. This may hamper any attempt to try a softer, more comprehensive strategy that might have a chance at success.
Bullshit. Sounds like an excuse in the making. You're already blaming the other side in advance? C'mon. If something happens and Obama proves his strength, it won't matter what anyone else says - especially Cheney. I mean seriously what RATIONAL person is listening to him anyway.

Spexxvet 01-09-2010 09:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sundae Girl (Post 625034)
...The one positive result of the bombing of the World Trade Centre - to me - was that Americans finally started to see that terrorism was not just forceful public opinion. Lack of American support had a real impact on the Troubles. All of a sudden, men like Bobby Sands went from being a martyr, to a criminal. What would American public opinion have been if a 9/11 bomber starved himself to death? Ho hum, one less mouth to feed - as opposed to a political prisoner demanding to be treated as such and not as a criminal.
....

I always wondered why Bush didn't invade Ireland.:cool: What's so different about Ireland and Iraq?

Quote:

Originally Posted by classicman (Post 625180)
That sounds pretty much like the last, what 3-4 elections for me. ...

It's been that way since the Democrats had the unmittigated audacity to begin impeachment hearings against Nixon. Sour grapes, and vengeance.

Sundae 01-09-2010 09:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by classicman (Post 625045)
Exactly when did we Americans think that?

From Dana's article (which is actually about how little support their was in America, so if anything it's biased the other way).
Quote:

The Irish diaspora, especially those who settled in the United States, have played an intregal part in the Troubles. It is true that a small portion of Irish-Americans have always supported the Irish Republican Army
however, many Irish-American supporters of the IRA remained wedded to the idea that only violence would bring about a united Ireland.
For a quarter century, the IRA attracted a core of followers in the United States who were loyal and dedicated.
In 1969, as TV images of Catholics being attacked were beamed back to Irish Catholic enclaves in Boston and New York, hats were literally passed around pubs from Southie to Woodside in Queens. Fundraising for the IRA, or at least for IRA prisoners, peaked whenever the British were seen to do something outrageous, such as when British soldiers shot 14 civil rights marchers dead on Bloody Sunday in 1972 or in 1981 when Margaret Thatcher allowed the hunger strikers to die.
Quote:

Originally Posted by classicman (Post 625045)
It will likely be less going forward.

Don't get me wrong - I was writing about support in the past, not a current situation. And I have always been aware that it was a minority support.
Quote:

Originally Posted by classicman (Post 625045)
?????

Not 100% sure what you're questioning. I was stating my opinion that I don't think the IRA were political prisoners, and I doubt many Americans will see the terrorists involved in the current terrorism of America in a purely political light either. Bobby Sands starved himself to death and I didn't give a shit (poor pun). It wasn't meant to be anti-American.

Sundae 01-09-2010 09:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DanaC (Post 625171)
As to the IRA.
Personally, I think those prisoners were political prisoners. Yes, they committed violent acts. But they were political prisoners. They weren't just 'criminals' they were soldiers fighting a guerilla war.

I know that there were mistakes made on both sides. But IRA mistakes tended to be far bloodier. They were ruthless, cruel and engaged in criminal activities. And after all they were accorded political status in the end - after all that fuss about the Lockerbie bomber going home to die - how many IRA members with blood on their hands were freed before their sentences were up?
Quote:

The level of support they had in America has been overblown.
Interesting article. I'm not completely convinced, given that this is the first time I have read this and have had no time to read around it. But I will do and am willing to concede that much of what I swallowed without question was as a teenager.
Quote:

When it came to the violence on the mainland; the majority of IRA bomb attacks were preceded by warning phonecalls. Bit different to walking onto a plane and blowing yourself up. Apart from the pub bombings ( a very dark chapter) and the Brighton Hotel, most IRA attacks were designed to cause maximum disruption ancd fear with minimum loss of life.
I disagree. In Omagh three warnings were given, each slighty contradicting the other. The police were clearing the wrong area when the bomb went off. And Enniskillen, no warning - and in fact it was only cackhandedness that prevented a far higher death toll that day - 20 miles away a bomb was planted at a memorial service for the Boys and Girls Brigade - 4 times the size of the one which exploded. But that's Ireland which we weren't discussing.

So on the mainland. The warning system just doesn't appear to be a real failsafe.
The warning system still allowed two shopkeepers to die at Canary Wharf.
Manchester City Centre cleared of shoppers and workers, but 212 still injured.
Pub bombings - Guildford 4 dead, Woolwich 2 dead, Birmingham (one inadequate warning) two pubs bombed 21 dead.
Hyde Park and Regents Park bombings - the Royal Green Jackets playing a medley of songs from Oliver, civilians among the wounded, 7 horses killed or so badly maimed they had to be put down - no warning.
Brighton Hotel bombing, no warning - 5 dead many seriously wounded
Deal Barracks bombed - the Royal Marines School of Music that takes in 16 year olds to train in music and as medics. 11 dead, 23 seriously injured, almost all teens and new recruits.
Warrington bombs - warning given for Liverpool, 15 miles away. 2 children killed in a shopping street the day before Mother's Day.
Two Australian tourists shot and killed in Roermond in the Netherlands, mistakenly identified as off duty soldiers.
Quote:

The attacks over here caused distress and fear
And death.

My point being if you don't like killing civilians than you have to be a hell of a lot more careful than the IRA were.

Please don't think I'm a supporter of the Loyalists either. I'm only picking up on the death of civilians (okay, not Deal, but they were unarmed kids) on the Mainland. Yes, I think you're right re the situation being different. Yes I agree that the most damage was done in Ireland - the builders, taxi drivers, passers by, partners, families etc etc. It's all revolting.

It still affects me as I'm sure you can tell. A slightly older generation grew up in fear of The Bomb. That didn't mean shit to me. I grew up in fear of the IRA. Of having stations and shopping centres and office buildings blown up.

Sundae 01-09-2010 09:31 AM

Some final facts before I stop flogging this poor old horse.
These are not offered as evidence for my personal beliefs - they prove nothing one way of the other. They are simply to remind people what we lived through.

IRA casualities:
Another detailed study Lost Lives,[113] states the Provisional IRA was responsible for the deaths of 1,781 people up to 2004:
644 civilians,
456 British military (including British Army, RAF, Royal Irish Regiment, Royal Navy, and Territorial Army)
273 Royal Ulster Constabulary (including RUC reserve)
182 Ulster Defence Regiment and 5 former British Army
23 Northern Ireland Prison Service officers and five British police officers
163 Republican paramilitary members (including IRA members, most caused their own deaths when bombs they were transporting exploded prematurely)
28 loyalist paramilitary members.
Six were Gardaí and one was Irish Army.

Redux 01-09-2010 09:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by classicman (Post 625180)
....Bullshit. Sounds like an excuse in the making. You're already blaming the other side in advance? C'mon. If something happens and Obama proves his strength, it won't matter what anyone else says - especially Cheney. I mean seriously what RATIONAL person is listening to him anyway.

If you dont think that this latest terrorist attempt has been politicized by the right, then you havent been watching or reading the news.....not just Chaney, but Gingrigh, Guiliani, members of Congress using it for fund-raising by suggesting that Obama and Democrats are weak on terrorism, most of the neo-con talking heads, etc.

National security should be, and has always been, the one issue around which Americans unite. They (we) certainly did so after 9/11 and the invasion of Afghanistan....right up until the "war on terror" was relocated to Iraq.

But it is an issue on which many (not all are that callous) Republicans think they can "win" and have no problem with politicizing the issue.

Shawnee123 01-09-2010 09:56 AM

As always, it's about "winning" and not what is good for us, for our country.

It will be the death of all of us, the death of our way of life, the death of our freedom. It is evil in its most dangerous form.

Politics have been riddled with evil since the beginning of organization of said politics, but the pockets of "doing what is right" for the people have become almost non-existent. Greed is the supreme ruler, might equals right its most faithful and its strongest minion.

richlevy 01-09-2010 11:30 AM

To say that those in the Middle East have no grievance, real or perceived, against us is wrong. Most of the 20th century involved the US or some European country mucking about there because of oil or some strategic position related to oil. If there wasn't a drop of oil in the Middle East, we'd be pretty much ignoring it the same way we mostly ignore Africa.

Most of the terrorists have overplayed their hand with a majority of the populations. But even in places where they are generally not welcome, they have support. And in some places they have a lot of support. How important is even a small amount of support? In the U.S. Eric Rudolph was on the run for 5 years.

Quote:

It is thought that Rudolph had the assistance of sympathizers while evading capture. Some in the area were vocal in support of him. Two country music songs were written about him and a locally top-selling T-shirt read: "Run Rudolph Run." The Anti-Defamation League noted that "extremist chatter on the Internet has praised Rudolph as 'a hero' and some followers of hate groups are calling for further acts of violence to be modeled after the bombings he is accused of committing."[7]
The solution to the Irish Troubles was a political one - the Good Friday agreement and a power-sharing executive, essentially dividing control between Sinn Fein and the Democratic Unionist parties. One party gets the first minister post and the other gets the deputy first minister post. This is a bit like forcing Obama to have Dick Cheney as his VP.

piercehawkeye45 01-09-2010 11:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shawnee123 (Post 625207)
It will be the death of all of us, the death of our way of life, the death of our freedom. It is evil in its most dangerous form.

I don't know about taking it that far but as a country, we have the political system we deserve. As a collective, we tend to make politics an emotional game and not a logical one. We eat up emotional issues and, in return,are force fed back to us. We don't hold our local politicians (senators and House members) responsible and always find a scapegoat, which in turn allows politicians to do whatever they desire without much accountability.

Until the US population decides to take action and actually live up to the potential of democratic system, nothing will change for the better. Unfortunately, every four years we are seduced by another person who convinces us that rogue politicians can save our country, and not the people ourselves.

richlevy 01-09-2010 12:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by piercehawkeye45 (Post 625226)
I don't know about taking it that far but as a country, we have the political system we deserve. As a collective, we tend to make politics an emotional game and not a logical one. We eat up emotional issues and, in return,are force fed back to us. We don't hold our local politicians (senators and House members) responsible and always find a scapegoat, which in turn allows politicians to do whatever they desire without much accountability.

We also need leaders who are smart and engaging. Reagan got fed a lot of bad ideas by his advisors, but as an experienced pitchman was able to sell them. Nixon may have been smarter than Kennedy, but had the presence of a rock. We should start a breeding program hooking up supernerds with supermodels. Maybe Nicole Kidman can hook up with Larry Page. You might get the best of both worlds, like Ivanka Trump. Of course, you might get a whole crop of Sarah Palins and Ann Coulters, but we already have good special education programs.

classicman 01-09-2010 01:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Redux (Post 625204)
If you dont think that this latest terrorist attempt has been politicized ..... etc.

But it is an issue on which many have no problem with politicizing the issue.

I would say it is clearly being played up by the right and down by the left as issues like this always have been. Nothing new.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shawnee123 (Post 625207)
As always, it's about "winning" and not what is good for us, for our country. Greed is the supreme ruler, might equals right its most faithful and its strongest minion.

Sad, but I agree.

Quote:

Originally Posted by richlevy (Post 625246)
You might get the best of both worlds, like Ivanka Trump.

:headshake

DanaC 01-09-2010 01:31 PM

Oh i recall the fear Sundae. I was working in a clothes shop in the arndale centre in Bolton in 1990. We had a couple of bomb scares. All of us filing out and watching as the bomb-squad went in. I lived not far from Warrington, where the young lad got his face blown off. That one, by the way was a horrible accident and the IRA made a public apology for it. he was not their intended victim. Cold comfort. But intentions fdo count for something.

Not all the warnings worked, and not all bombs came with warnings. But the majority on the mainland did.

It was a bloody time. They were engaged in a bloody war, and it was one waged against civlians as much as it was waged against the forces. The attacks on military and police could be seen as a legitimate target. Don't forget police in NI during this period weren't like ordinary bobbies doing their beat, they were one of the arms of the state used to suppress dissent; they were overwhelmingly protestant unionists and deeply antaganonistic to the Catholic civilian population.

I'm not in any way trying to say that what they did was right. Just that they had a legitimate cause. Some of what they did was legitimate martial activity in the face of an occupying and settled oppressor. Some of it was downright despicable. Our state has killed civilians whilst waging war. They killed civilians whilst waging war. The only distinctions were that they were often deliberately targetting civilians (as opposed to them being 'collaterol damage) and they weren't a recognised army.

Those who were imprisoned for terrorist activity were political prisoners. What they did might have been despicable and inhuman. But it was a political fight. There is a difference between them and someone who loses his temper and batters his wife to death; or breaks into a house and steals a TV. It is still criminal; but it is also political.

I was terrified by the threat of bombs. Christmas shopping in Manchester was frightening. Working in a shopping centre a few miles from Warrington was frightening. Much of what the IRA did was beneath contempt; most particularly the things they did to the civilians on their own side; or those accused of collaboration. Such is the nature of that kind of fight. The French resistance were no kinder to 'collaborators' after the war. And I cannot sit here and feel sympathy for the Algerian liberation fighters, and not also have sympathy for those who fought the same battle in NI. No side had clean hands.



[eta] That said, i completely get the point you were initially making. And I agree with you. I can just imagine the response from the White House were the British PM to start trying to tell the President that he should be treating terrorists as political prisoners. In fact i seem to recall the responses to our calls to treat the Guantanemo inmates with something approaching humanity fell on deaf ears during Bush's premiership. It's a lot easier to see the political cause when it isn't being directed specifically at you.


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