Page: 1234
pavement
member
Location: york, uk
Member Since: 17th May 2003
Total posts: 121
Posted:So George Bush and his entourage are coming to London. Is anybody else feeling uncomfortable about having this murderous simpleton in Britain, not to mention his gang of gun-toting security guards? Could the timing be any worse for a state visit, given the current public feeling on the situation in Iraq?

It does give us an opportuniy to show The world what we think of Bush and his policies, and it looks like there are going to be massive protests here..


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Dom
Dom

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Bristol, UK
Member Since: 19th Dec 2001
Total posts: 3009
Posted:Interesting article with different views about what to do about Iraq now.

"Though when you really think about it, it doesnt matter what could have been done, because the chance to discover alternate options has passed and we must decide what to do with the circumstances in front of us right now."

I completely disagree with this statement. Looking at what could have been done better is a way of learning and improving. Be it your daily life or international politics, we should always analyse our history in order not to repeat past mistakes. And a lot of options open to the US after 9/11 are still open now. But then the US had the sympathy of the world, and now it's going to be hard for the US to make up for it's abuse of that sympathy.


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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:You are absolutly right Dom, allow me to change my reply a bit, yes it is important to learn and see what could have been done so that we may avoid the mistakes of our past... but should we dwell on it? That I think we souldnt.

Is Iraq linked to Alquieda or the Taliban? I have no idea and dont recall ever saying so. Yet there isnt a soul here that will say that what Sadam did to the people of Iraq was anything short of cause unsermounted terror.


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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wan hwo ren
wan hwo ren

member
Location: I'm not sure
Member Since: 27th Mar 2002
Total posts: 86
Posted:Quote:


The "Big Dog" bit the person who rattled its cage, but then went after that persons brother too.





Laytin, I'm assuming that you are saying that al quaeda rattled the cage and iraq is the 'brother'. You may think I am making too big of a deal of this, but I am just trying to really understand your point of view, which is much different from mine. ubbidea

So please clarify, why do you consider iraq to be related to either the taliban or al quaeda?


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woodnymph
woodnymph

member
Location: london,uk
Member Since: 14th Sep 2003
Total posts: 313
Posted:
Can you not imagine how bad somebody's life must have been for them to think that the only good thing they can do it kill themselves for a cause they believe in? What's happened to them to so remove all hope and opportunity? to quote dom.

I've thought of this and the only thing that would drive me to such an act would be immense suffering like injustice,loss of loved ones......thanks for making this point so clearly,and the rest................ ubbangel


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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:Wen Hwo Ren, yes I said that and yes that is sorta what I meant, though I will admit that I forgot that I said it. I apologise for that ubbangel

Quote:
I've thought of this and the only thing that would drive me to such an act would be immense suffering like injustice,loss of loved ones



And that didnt happen on Sep 11?


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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wan hwo ren
wan hwo ren

member
Location: I'm not sure
Member Since: 27th Mar 2002
Total posts: 86
Posted:Laytin,
You're not the first war supporter that I've asked about things, I don't want to be confrontational, I really am interested in opinions that are different than mine.

What I generally find though is that I can't get a straight answer.

First you imply that iraq is related somehow to the taliban or al quaeda and then when asked to explain you revert to the standard reply of it doesn't really matter anyways because sadam was bad

Quote:
Is Iraq linked to Alquieda or the Taliban? I have no idea and dont recall ever saying so. Yet there isnt a soul here that will say that what Sadam did to the people of Iraq was anything short of cause unsermounted terror.




Which is it? Did the US invade iraq out of anger over 911 or was it because sadam was a bad guy?


I think that I am open to listening to other people's views, but it doesn't seem that you are interested in explaining yours.

I am giving you the benefit of the doubt that you have actually thought your ideas through and would like to explain them. Please prove me right on this assumption.
wink


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King Of Bongo
King Of Bongo

addict
Location: Berlin
Member Since: 25th Dec 2002
Total posts: 522
Posted:wan hwo ren- its neither. The US officially went to war with iraq over WMDs (which have not yet been found i might add) which were a threat to their national (in)security.

Your life is ending one minute at a time...
So live it.

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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:I am sorry, I am not a pro-war person. I may be pro to this war, but please dont rope me into a catagory of warmongering dimwitts ubbloco

I am not an expert, and I do not know 100% why the US decided to invade. What I know is what I think its reasons were and what the media says.

WMD I believe played some minor part in all this. Now, Iraq violated UN sanctions that had been in place since the early 1990's, nothing was done by the UN to not only stop this but to punish these actions. The US as part of the UN were obligated to respond, like every other UN nation. Just because the UN didnt want to as a whole, did not remove the obligation they had.

Now Iraq has be placed in the same catagory as the Taliban and Al 'Quida (man I really need to learn how to spell that tongue ) because they are all considerd the enimy in the War on Terror.

In truth this means that they are both being attacked because of a "link" to what happend on Sep 11 and becuse of their own unlawful practices.

If this doesnt answer your questions, I dont know what will. History major, not political science tongue


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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Dom
Dom

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Bristol, UK
Member Since: 19th Dec 2001
Total posts: 3009
Posted:It kinda answers the question, to which my response is: If this was the reasons then the reasons were wrong and misguided.

Many other countries have broken more UN resolutions and been a bigger threat to their inhabitants and those around them. In some cases the US intervened without overthrowing the government, in some cases they did nothing, and in some cases they actively support the offending regimes.

And considering the fact that there were no terrorists cells in iraq threatening anyone before the war, whilst there are now plenty in Iraq and more across the world caused by opposition to the war blows the second argument out the water.

It seems to me to be a multitude of reasons - a political game within the Middle East that's back fired, with a dash of Arab/Muslim phobia thrown in.


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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:Quote:
And considering the fact that there were no terrorists cells in iraq threatening anyone before the war, whilst there are now plenty in Iraq and more across the world caused by opposition to the war blows the second argument out the water.



How do you know this? Threats do not have to be publicly announced, threats dont have to be seen or heard, but they still exist.

Quote:
Many other countries have broken more UN resolutions and been a bigger threat to their inhabitants and those around them. In some cases the US intervened without overthrowing the government, in some cases they did nothing, and in some cases they actively support the offending regimes.




If the US helps/intervens in every country, people will complain that the US is sticking it's nose where it doesnt belong. If the US never does anything to help, people will complain that the US is just sitting there getting richer whilst everyone else in the world suffers. If the US picks and chooses it's level of involvment, people will complain that the US sticks it's nose where it doesnt belong AND just sits there getting richer whilst the rest of the world suffers.

How should the US Government proceede? No matter what they do they will upset somebody somewhere, maybe even to the point that they do something tragic like blow up a building.

The US picks and chooses it's fights, maybe it does it for self gain, maybe it feels that it is actually doing some good. Who can really say except for the people making the decisions?


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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Pali
Pali

journeyman
Location: Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
Member Since: 27th Jan 2003
Total posts: 84
Posted:What it all boils down to is ethical relativism.

Western culture being dominant does not make it right for everyone else in the world. We have no right to assume it is, and certainly no right to force it upon them.

We may disagree with the way Saddam does business; we may wish that the people who suffer beneath him could have lives more like ours; but we cannot save people who dont want to be saved.

In the future, Americans should discover how our presidential candidates stand on issues we care about before we elect them into office.

This American votes libertarian.

peace ubblove biggrin


Genuineness only thrives in the dark -- like celery.

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Raphael96
old hand
Location: New York City
Member Since: 8th Sep 2002
Total posts: 899
Posted:I'd vote Libertine, but thats not a political party yet smile

Raph


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Raphael96
old hand
Location: New York City
Member Since: 8th Sep 2002
Total posts: 899
Posted:I was just sent this article and thought it would be interesting to post:


When Democracy Failed: The Warnings of History
by Thom Hartmann

The 70th anniversary wasn't noticed in the United States, and was barely reported in the corporate media. But the Germans remembered well that fateful day seventy years ago - February 27, 1933. They commemorated the anniversary by joining in demonstrations for peace that mobilized citizens all across the world.

It started when the government, in the midst of a worldwide economic crisis, received reports of an imminent terrorist attack. A foreign ideologue had launched feeble attacks on a few famous buildings [Dutch terrorist Marinus van der Lubbe's successful firebombing of the German Parliament (Reichstag) building, but the media largely
ignored his relatively small efforts. The intelligence services knew, however, that
the odds were he would eventually succeed.(Historians are still arguing whether or not rogue elements in the intelligence service helped the terrorist; the most recent research implies they did not.)
But the warnings of investigators were ignored at the highest levels, in part because the government was distracted; the man who claimed to be the nation's leader [Hitler] had not been elected by a majority vote and the majority of citizens claimed he had no right to the powers he coveted.
He was a simpleton, some said, a cartoon character of a man who saw things in black-and-white terms and didn't have the intellect to understand the subtleties of running a nation in a complex and internationalist world. His coarse use of language -
reflecting his political roots in a southernmost state - and his simplistic and
often-inflammatory nationalistic rhetoric offended the aristocrats, foreign leaders, and the well-educated elite in the government and media. And, as a young man, he'd joined a secret society with an occult-sounding name and bizarre initiation rituals that involved skulls and human bones.

Nonetheless, he knew the terrorist was going to strike
(although he
didn't know where or when), and he had already
considered his response. When an aide brought him word
that the nation's most prestigious building was
ablaze, he verified it was the terrorist who had
struck and then rushed to the scene and called a press
conference.
"You are now witnessing the beginning of a great epoch
in history," he
proclaimed, standing in front of the burned-out
building, surrounded by
national media. "This fire," he said, his voice
trembling with emotion,
"is the beginning." He used the occasion - "a sign
from God," he called
it - to declare an all-out war on terrorism and its
ideological
sponsors, a people, he said, who traced their origins
to the Middle East
and found motivation for their evil deeds in their
religion.

Two weeks later, the first detention center for
terrorists was built in
Oranianberg to hold the first suspected allies of the
infamous
terrorist. In a national outburst of patriotism, the
leader's flag was
everywhere, even printed large in newspapers suitable
for window
display.

Within four weeks of the terrorist attack, the
nation's now-popular
leader had pushed through legislation - in the name of
combating
terrorism and fighting the philosophy he said spawned
it - that
suspended constitutional guarantees of free speech,
privacy, and habeas corpus. Police could now intercept
mail and wiretap phones; suspected terrorists could be
imprisoned without specific charges and without access
to their lawyers; police could sneak into people's
homes without warrants if the cases involved
terrorism.

To get his patriotic "Decree on the Protection of
People and State"
passed over the objections of concerned legislators
and civil
libertarians, he agreed to put a 4-year sunset
provision on it: if the
national emergency provoked by the terrorist attack
was over by then,
the freedoms and rights would be returned to the
people, and the police
agencies would be re-restrained. Legislators would
later say they hadn't
had time to read the bill before voting on it.

Immediately after passage of the anti-terrorism act,
his federal police
agencies stepped up their program of arresting
suspicious persons and
holding them without access to lawyers or courts. In
the first year only
a few hundred were interred, and those who objected
were largely ignored by the mainstream press, which
was afraid to offend and thus lose access to a leader
with such high popularity ratings. Citizens who
protested the leader in public - and there were many -
quickly found themselves confronting the newly
empowered police's batons, gas, and jail cells, or
fenced off in protest zones safely out of earshot of
the leader's public speeches. (In the meantime, he was
taking almost daily lessons in public speaking,
learning to control his tonality, gestures, and facial
expressions. He became a very competent orator.)

Within the first months after that terrorist attack,
at the suggestion
of a political advisor, he brought a formerly obscure
word into common
usage. He wanted to stir a "racial pride" among his
countrymen, so,
instead of referring to the nation by its name, he
began to refer to it
as "The Homeland," a phrase publicly promoted in the
introduction to a
1934 speech recorded in Leni Riefenstahl's famous
propaganda movie
"Triumph Of The Will." As hoped, people's hearts
swelled with pride, and the beginning of an
us-versus-them mentality was sewn. Our land was
"the" homeland, citizens thought: all others were
simply foreign lands.
We are the "true people," he suggested, the only ones
worthy of our
nation's concern; if bombs fall on others, or human
rights are violated
in other nations and it makes our lives better, it's
of little concern
to us.

Playing on this new nationalism, and exploiting a
disagreement with the
French over his increasing militarism, he argued that
any international
body that didn't act first and foremost in the best
interest of his own
nation was neither relevant nor useful. He thus
withdrew his country
from the League Of Nations in October, 1933, and then
negotiated a
separate naval armaments agreement with Anthony Eden
of The United
Kingdom to create a worldwide military ruling elite.

His propaganda minister orchestrated a campaign to
ensure the people
that he was a deeply religious man and that his
motivations were rooted
in Christianity. He even proclaimed the need for a
revival of the
Christian faith across his nation, what he called a
"New Christianity."
Every man in his rapidly growing army wore a belt
buckle that declared
"Gott Mit Uns" - God Is With Us - and most of them
fervently believed it was true.

Within a year of the terrorist attack, the nation's
leader determined
that the various local police and federal agencies
around the nation
were lacking the clear communication and overall
coordinated
administration necessary to deal with the terrorist
threat facing the
nation, particularly those citizens who were of Middle
Eastern ancestry
and thus probably terrorist and communist
sympathizers, and various
troublesome "intellectuals" and "liberals." He
proposed a single new
national agency to protect the security of the
homeland, consolidating
the actions of dozens of previously independent
police, border, and
investigative agencies under a single leader.

He appointed one of his most trusted associates to be
leader of this new
agency, the Central Security Office for the homeland,
and gave it a role
in the government equal to the other major
departments.
His assistant who dealt with the press noted that,
since the terrorist
attack, "Radio and press are at our disposal." Those
voices questioning
the legitimacy of their nation's leader, or raising
questions about his
checkered past, had by now faded from the public's
recollection as his
central security office began advertising a program
encouraging people
to phone in tips about suspicious neighbors. This
program was so
successful that the names of some of the people
"denounced" were soon being broadcast on radio
stations. Those denounced often included
opposition politicians and celebrities who dared speak
out - a favorite
target of his regime and the media he now controlled
through
intimidation and ownership by corporate allies.

To consolidate his power, he concluded that government
alone wasn't
enough. He reached out to industry and forged an
alliance, bringing
former executives of the nation's largest corporations
into high
government positions. A flood of government money
poured into corporate coffers to fight the war against
the Middle Eastern ancestry terrorists lurking within
the homeland, and to prepare for wars overseas. He
encouraged large corporations friendly to him to
acquire media outlets and other industrial concerns
across the nation, particularly those previously owned
by suspicious people of Middle Eastern ancestry. He
built powerful alliances with industry; one corporate
ally got the
lucrative contract worth millions to build the first
large-scale
detention center for enemies of the state. Soon more
would follow.
Industry flourished.

But after an interval of peace following the terrorist
attack, voices of
dissent again arose within and without the government.
Students had
started an active program opposing him (later known as
the White Rose
Society), and leaders of nearby nations were speaking
out against his
bellicose rhetoric. He needed a diversion, something
to
direct people away from the corporate cronyism being
exposed in his own government, questions of his
possibly illegitimate rise to power, and
the oft-voiced concerns of civil libertarians about
the people being
held in detentionmwithout due process or access to
attorneys or family.
With his number two man - a master at manipulating the
media - he began a campaign to convince the people of
the nation that a small, limited war was necessary.
Another nation was harboring many of the suspicious
Middle Eastern people, and even though its connection
with the terrorist who had set afire the nation's most
important building was tenuous at best, it held
resources their nation badly needed if they were to
have room to live and maintain their prosperity. He
called a press conference and publicly delivered an
ultimatum to the leader of the other nation, provoking
an international uproar. He claimed the right to
strike
preemptively in self-defense, and nations across
Europe - at first -
denounced him for it, pointing out that it was a
doctrine only claimed
in the past by nations seeking worldwide empire, like
Caesar's Rome or
Alexander's Greece.

It took a few months, and intense international debate
and lobbying with
European nations, but, after he personally met with
the leader of the
United Kingdom, finally a deal was struck. After the
military action
began, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain told the
nervous British
people that giving in to this leader's new
first-strike doctrine would
bring "peace for our time." Thus Hitler annexed
Austria in a lightning
move, riding a wave of popular support as leaders so
often do in times
of war. The Austrian government was unseated and
replaced by a new
leadership friendly to Germany, and German
corporations began to take
over Austrian resources.

In a speech responding to critics of the invasion,
Hitler said, "Certain
foreign newspapers have said that we fell on Austria
with brutal
methods. I can only say; even in death they cannot
stop lying. I have in
the course of my political struggle won much love from
my people, but
when I crossed the former frontier [into Austria]
there met me such a
stream of love as I have never experienced. Not as
tyrants have we come, but as liberators."

To deal with those who dissented from his policies, at
the advice of his
politically savy advisors, he and his handmaidens in
the press began a
campaign to equate him and his policies with
patriotism and the nation
itself. National unity was essential, they said, to
ensure that the
terrorists or their sponsors didn't think they'd
succeeded in splitting
the nation or weakening its will. In times of war,
they said, there
could be only "one people, one nation, and one
commander-in-chief" ("Ein Volk, ein Reich, ein
Fuhrer"), and so his advocates in the media began a
nationwide campaign charging that critics of his
policies were attacking the nation itself. Those
questioning him were labeled "anti-German" or "not
good Germans," and it was suggested they were aiding
the enemies of the state by failing in the patriotic
necessity of supporting the nation's valiant men in
uniform. It was one of his most effective ways to
stifle dissent and pit wage-earning people (from whom
most of the army came) against the "intellectuals and
liberals" who were critical of his
policies.

Nonetheless, once the "small war" annexation of
Austria was successfully and quickly completed, and
peace returned, voices of opposition were again raised
in the Homeland. The almost-daily release of news
bulletins about the dangers of terrorist communist
cells wasn't enough to rouse the populace and totally
suppress dissent. A full-out war was necessary to
divert public attention from the growing rumbles
within the country about disappearing dissidents;
violence against liberals, Jews, and union leaders;
and the epidemic of crony capitalism that was
producing empires of wealth in the corporate sector
but threatening the middle class's way of life.

A year later, to the week, Hitler invaded
Czechoslovakia; the nation was
now fully at war, and all internal dissent was
suppressed in the name of
national security. It was the end of Germany's first
experiment with
democracy.

As we conclude this review of history, there are a few
milestones worth
remembering. February 27, 2003, was the 70th
anniversary of Dutch terrorist Marinus van der Lubbe's
successful firebombing of the German Parliament
(Reichstag) building, the terrorist act that
catapulted Hitler to
legitimacy and reshaped the German constitution. By
the time of his
successful and brief action to seize Austria, in which
almost no German
blood was shed, Hitler was the most beloved and
popular leader in the
history of his nation. Hailed around the world, he was
later Time
magazine's "Man Of The Year."

Most Americans remember his office for the security of
the homeland,
known as the Reichssicherheitshauptamt and its
SchutzStaffel, simply by its most famous agency's
initials: the SS.
We also remember that the Germans developed a new form
of highly violent warfare they named "lightning war"
or blitzkrieg, which, while
generating devastating civilian losses, also produced
a highly desirable
"shock and awe" among the nation's leadership
according to the authors of the 1996 book "Shock And
Awe" published by the National Defense
University Press.

Reflecting on that time, The American Heritage
Dictionary (Houghton
Mifflin Company, 1983) left us this definition of the
form of government
the German democracy had become through Hitler's close
alliance with the largest German corporations and his
policy of using war as a tool to
keep power: "fas-cism (fash'iz'em) n. A system of
government that
exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right,
typically through the
merging of state and business leadership, together
with belligerent
nationalism."

Today, as we face financial and political crises, it's
useful to
remember that the ravages of the Great Depression hit
Germany and the United States alike. Through the
1930s, however, Hitler and Roosevelt
chose very different courses to bring their nations
back to power and
prosperity.

Germany's response was to use government to empower
corporations and reward the society's richest
individuals, privatize much of the commons, stifle
dissent, strip people of constitutional rights, and
create an illusion of prosperity through continual and
ever-expanding war. America passed minimum wage laws
to raise the middle class, enforced anti-trust laws to
diminish the power of corporations, increased taxes on

corporations and the wealthiest individuals, created
Social Security,
and became the employer of last resort through
programs to build
national infrastructure, promote the arts, and replant
forests.
To the extent that our Constitution is still intact,
the choice is again
ours.
---
Thom Hartmann lived and worked in Germany during the
1980s, and is the
author of over a dozen books, including "Unequal
Protection" and "The
Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight."


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woodnymph
woodnymph

member
Location: london,uk
Member Since: 14th Sep 2003
Total posts: 313
Posted:OH my gosh....i read thru that!fascinating reading......when will we learn,not to be played like muppets by the powers that be and think for ourselves....after reading the above i feel like i understand a lot more about the roots of hitlers beginnings and even the present conflict.....they share certain similiarities....

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Zyanya Bella
member

Member Since: 16th Sep 2003
Total posts: 70
Posted:Once again I must remind myself to keep up on this thread. Too much to reply too....The whole hitler thing...You can't compare bush to hitler for several reasons.
1.) Though America invaded Iraq it is not an occupying country. We have not declared Iraq ours. We have not put Bush as thier leader, instead we are arranging an interim government.
2.) There has been no mass genocide of any kind. Bush is not rounding up muslims in the "homeland" and sending them to concentration camps. (By the way...just something that irked me...that article was not historically correct. Germany was called the "Fatherland")
Someone stated we cannot save people who do not want to be saved. Who are you refering to here? There were just as many Iraqi's standing in the streets welcoming the soldier and the food and supplies as there are rebels opposing the over throw of Saddam. As far as linking Saddam, the Taliban, and Al qaueda it is not because they are all Arabic. It is because they are all terrorists in some way shape or form. They wreaked havoc and opression on thier own people and that is terrorism enough. As I have said before, we can't help the whole world. We are one country and we cannot fix it all. We can however fix certain things and Iraq happens to be one of them.
Don't tell me I don't think for myself. My government doesn't think for me, I have my issues with it. Issues that would take entirely too long to get into here. I support the war for several reasons and one of those reasons is in Iraq with his life in danger as I write this. So as you complain and protest think of the man sitting in the sands of Iraq that you are NOT supporting. Think of the soldier giving his life not just in the belief he is fighting for his country but he is fighting to better the world. While you in all your freedom are protesting what you do not agree with think of he who is dying to protect that........
hug kiss beerchug


Always Beautiful

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Raphael96
old hand
Location: New York City
Member Since: 8th Sep 2002
Total posts: 899
Posted:Quote:
OH my gosh....i read thru that!fascinating reading......when will we learn,not to be played like muppets by the powers that be and think for ourselves....after reading the above i feel like i understand a lot more about the roots of hitlers beginnings and even the present conflict.....they share certain similiarities....



TOO many similarities..

frown

Raph


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Spanner
Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...
Member Since: 27th Feb 2003
Total posts: 2790
Posted:Technically, Bush has not committed mass genocide. But he has committed mass murder. And although Guantanamo Bay is not a concentration camp, none of the detainees have been charged, neither have they been allowed access to lawyers. So I can understand why these comparisons are being drawn, it seems that's the way he's heading ubbcrying

Quote:
There were just as many Iraqi's standing in the streets welcoming the soldier and the food and supplies as there are rebels opposing the over throw of Saddam.



Are you writing from Iraq?

Quote:
While you in all your freedom are protesting what you do not agree with think of he who is dying to protect that...



I do so partly on behalf of these soldiers, because it is they who have requested our help in returning them home smile

peace


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

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wan hwo ren
wan hwo ren

member
Location: I'm not sure
Member Since: 27th Mar 2002
Total posts: 86
Posted:Quote:
I support the war for several reasons and one of those reasons is in Iraq with his life in danger as I write this. So as you complain and protest think of the man sitting in the sands of Iraq that you are NOT supporting. Think of the soldier giving his life not just in the belief he is fighting for his country but he is fighting to better the world.



Although I do not personally know any soldiers I do support them. I feel pity for them. Poor, young, naive american and british soldiers do not deserve to die any more than the Iraqis that they are killing. They are the tools that Bush and company use to commit their crimes against humanity, and they do deserve something better.


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King Of Bongo
King Of Bongo

addict
Location: Berlin
Member Since: 25th Dec 2002
Total posts: 522
Posted:Raphael 96, thanks for the essay, it was good, although it got a bit "iffy" towards the end. I'll have a longer think about it and explain myself better in a later post. I don't think too many parallels with current events should be extrapolated.

zyanya bella
Quote:
1.) Though America invaded Iraq it is not an occupying country. We have not declared Iraq ours. We have not put Bush as thier leader, instead we are arranging an interim government.


yep, only one that is "friendly" to the US... just like the puppet regime set up in austria...
Oh, and what do you call a country that is controlled by the military forces of another country? If that isn't occupied, I don't know what is...
I think you mean annexed (sp)- that means making another country part of yours by force and subjecting it to your rule.
Quote:

2.) There has been no mass genocide of any kind. Bush is not rounding up muslims in the "homeland" and sending them to concentration camps.


no, he is simply cracking down on immigration and sowing the seeds of racism against people of arabic origin, grouping them all as terrorists by proxy
Quote:

As far as linking Saddam, the Taliban, and Al qaeda it is not because they are all Arabic. It is because they are all terrorists in some way shape or form. They wreaked havoc and opression on thier own people and that is terrorism enough.



No, Sadam was a dictator and the Taliban are a people who had a regime in Afghanistan. They are not terrorists. On the other hand, Al Qaeda is a terrorist organization. Hitler was not a terrorist, he was a dictator. Following your reasoning, Bush is a terrorist because he is wreaking havoc on other peoples (eg those in occupied iraq).
Quote:

So as you complain and protest think of the man sitting in the sands of Iraq that you are NOT supporting. Think of the soldier giving his life not just in the belief he is fighting for his country but he is fighting to better the world. While you in all your freedom are protesting what you do not agree with think of he who is dying to protect that........


I can sympathise with what you are saying- but it is precisely some of these people that will be saved (and those who died would have been saved) if the "coalition of the willing" had not been so quick to take up arms.
Some might say that he who is fighting and dying is making the world a more dangerous place to live in. It is a question of perspective. Just because someone believes they are doing the right thing, it does not mean that they are.
hug


Your life is ending one minute at a time...
So live it.

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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:I can not speak for the Brittish soldiers, but I seriusly doubt that they differ too much in opinion. The military customers that I have in my bar are for one thing, anything but naive! To say something like that is shows nothing but blatent disrespect for a group of people you do not know. I have heard some pretty cold and nasty things said by drunk soldiers and sailors, but I rarely hear them speek out against those that appose them here at home.

Wan hwo ren, please refrain from making gross generalisations about people, not only is it highly insulting to the intelligence of those who read what you say, it is also just plain rude and socially unacceptable. It can and should be compared to someone who says that all black people are N******* and those of hispanic decent are lazy wet backs and that everybody from West Virginia are imbread homophobic rednecks. Please for the sake of peace on this message forum please show respect to everyone, even if you do not like them, even if you feel that they should be pittied.


You are right, they do not deserve to die, nor do the Iraqis. They are not the only ones doing the killings. Just as many Iraqis die each day from Iraqi attacks as from Coalition. Unfortunatly the media really doesnt cover those too well. Bush is not commiting any crimes, the war is leagle, you dont have to agree with it for it to be leagle.

I'll reply to the other items tomorrow morning, now I need to go to bed so I can be ready for my lovley test tomorrow frown


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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wan hwo ren
wan hwo ren

member
Location: I'm not sure
Member Since: 27th Mar 2002
Total posts: 86
Posted:
I do think that soldiers are naive, they are victims of intense propoganda, and then once they become soldiers (or marines, whatever) the military has a ridiculous amount of control over these individuals. This goes so far that soldiers literally lose the right to decide what drugs go into their own bodies, like the American soldiers that killed 4 Canadian soldiers in afghanistan while on massive amounts of speed.

Soldiers are naive and gullible - that is about the nicest thing I could say about them because by saying that I acknowledge good intentions. I'm pretty sure that 99.9% of the soldiers in Iraq believe that they are helping America / Iraq / the world. My belief is that they are sadly mistaken, but of course we all have our opinions.

If I did not think that soldiers were victims then I would have to consider them evil monsters and this is NOT true. Soldiers are good people, with good intentions, as I think most people in the world are. They are just young and naive victims, they can not be blamed for the war.

Here's an interesting letter, a bit long but worth the read.

Dear American serviceperson in Iraq,

I am a retired veteran of the army, and my own son is among you, a
paratrooper like I was. The changes that are happening to every one of
you--some more extreme than others--are changes I know very well. So
I'm
going to say some things to you straight up in the language to which
you are
accustomed.

In 1970, I was assigned to the 173rd Airborne Brigade, then based
in
northern Binh Dinh Province in what was then the Republic of Vietnam.
When I
went there, I had my head full of [censored]: [censored] from the news media, [censored]
from
movies, [censored] about what it supposedly mean to be a man, and [censored] from a
lot
of my know-nothing neighbors who would tell you plenty about Vietnam
even
though they'd never been there, or to war at all.

The essence of all this [censored] was that we had to "stay the course in
Vietnam," and that we were on some mission to save good Vietnamese from
bad
Vietnamese, and to keep the bad Vietnamese from hitting beachheads
outside
of Oakland. We stayed the course until 58,000 Americans were dead and
lots
more maimed for life, and 3,000,000 Southeast Asians were dead.
Ex-military
people and even many on active duty played a big part in finally
bringing
that crime to a halt.

When I started hearing about weapons of mass destruction that
threatened
the United States from Iraq, a shattered country that had endured
almost a
decade of trench war followed by an invasion and twelve years of
sanctions,
my first question was how in the hell can anyone believe that this
suffering
country presents a threat to the United States? But then I remembered
how
many people had believed Vietnam threatened the United States.
Including me.

When that bullshit story about weapons came apart like a two-dollar
shirt, the politicians who cooked up this war told everyone, including
you,
that you would be greeted like great liberators. They told us that we
were
in Vietnam to make sure everyone there could vote.

What they didn't tell me was that before I got there in 1970, the
American armed forces had been burning villages, killing livestock,
poisoning farmlands and forests, killing civilians for sport, bombing
whole
villages, and commiting rapes and massacres, and the people who were
grieving and raging over that weren't in a position to figure out the
difference between me--just in country--and the people who had done
those
things to them.

What they didn't tell you is that over a million and a half Iraqis
died
between 1991 and 2003 from malnutrition, medical neglect, and bad
sanitation. Over half a million of those who died were the weakest: the
children, especially very young children.

My son who is over there now has a baby. We visit with our grandson
every chance we get. He is eleven months old now. Lots of you have
children,
so you know how easy it is to really love them, and love them so hard
you
just know your entire world would collapse if anything happened to
them.
Iraqis feel that way about their babies, too. And they are not going to
forget that the United States government was largely responsible for
the
deaths of half a million kids.

So the lie that you would be welcomed as liberators was just that.
A
lie. A lie for people in the United States to get them to open their
purse
for this obscenity, and a lie for you to pump you up for a fight.

And when you put this into perspective, you know that if you were
an
Iraqi, you probably wouldn't be crazy about American soldiers taking
over
your towns and cities either. This is the tough reality I faced in
Vietnam.
I knew while I was there that if I were Vietnamese, I would have been
one of
the Vietcong.

But there we were, ordered into someone else's country, playing the
role
of occupier when we didn't know the people, their language, or their
culture, with our head full of bullshit our so-called leaders had told
us
during training and in preparation for deployment, and even when we got
there. There we were, facing people we were ordered to dominate, but
any one
of whom might be pumping mortars at us or firing AKs at us later that
night.

The question we stated to ask is who put us in this position?

In our process of fighting to stay alive, and in their process of
trying
to expel an invader that violated their dignity, destroyed their
property,
and killed their innocents, we were faced off against each other by
people
who made these decisions in $5,000 suits, who laughed and slapped each
other
on the back in Washington DC with their fat [censored] asses stuffed full
of
cordon blue and caviar.

They chumped us. Anyone can be chumped.

That's you now. Just fewer trees and less water.

We haven't figured out how to stop the pasty-faced, oil-hungry
backslappers in DC yet, and it looks like you all might be stuck there
for a
little longer. So I want to tell you the rest of the story.

I changed over there in Vietnam and they were not nice changes
either. I
started getting pulled into something--something that craved other
peole's
pain. Just to make sure I wasn't regarded as a "[censored] missionary" or
a
possible rat, I learned how to fit myself into that group that was
untouchable, people too crazy to [censored] with, people who desired the rush
of
omnipotence that comes with setting someone's house on fire just for
the
pure hell of it, or who could kill anyone, man, woman, or child, with
hardly
a second thought. People who had the power of life and death--because
they
could.

The anger helps. It's easy to hate everyone you can't trust because
of
your circumstances, and to rage about what you've seen, what has
happened to
you, and what you have done and can't take back.

It was all an act for me, a cover-up for deeper fears I couldn't
name,
and the reason I know that is that we had to dehumanize our victims
before
we did the things we did. We knew deep down that what we were doing was
wrong. So they became dinks or gooks, just like Iraqis are now being
transformed into ragheads or hajjis. People had to be reduced to
"niggers"
here before they could be lynched. No difference. We convinced
ourselves we
had to kill them to survive, even when that wasn't true, but something
inside us told us that so long as they were human beings, with the same
intrinsic value we had as human beings, we were not allowed to burn
their
homes and barns, kill their animals, and sometimes even kill them. So
we
used these words, these new names, to reduce them, to strip them of
their
essential humanity, and then we could do things like adjust artillery
fire
onto the cries of a baby.

Until that baby was silenced, though, and here's the important
thing to
understand, that baby never surrendered her humanity. I did. We did.
That's
the thing you might not get until it's too late. When you take away the
humantiy of another, you kill your own humanity. You attack your own
soul
because it is standing in the way.

So we finish our tour, and go back to our families, who can see
that
even though we function, we are empty and incapable of truly connecting
to
people any more, and maybe we can go for months or even years before we
fill
that void where we surrendered our humanity, with chemical
anesthetics--drugs, alcohol, until we realize that the void can never
be
filled and we shoot ourselves, or head off into the street where we can
disappear with the flotsam of society, or we hurt others, esepcially
those
who try to love us, and end up as another incarceration statistic or a
mental patient.

You can ever escape that you became a racist because you made the
excuse
that you needed that to survive, that you took things away from people
that
you can never give back, or that you killed a piece of yourself that
you may
never get back.

Some of us do. We get lucky and someone gives a damn enough to
emotionally resuscitate us and bring us back to life. Many do not.

I live with the rage every day of my life, even when no one else
sees
it. You might hear it in my words. I hate being chumped.

So here is my message to you. You will do what you have to do to
survive, however you define survival, while we do what we have to do to
stop
this thing. But don't surrender your humanity. Not to fit in. Not to
prove
yourself. Not for an adrenaline rush. Not to lash out when you are
angry and
frustrated. Not for some ticket-punching [censored] military careerist to
make
his bones on. Especially not for the Bush-Cheney Gas & Oil Consortium.

The big bosses are trying to gain control of the world's energy
supplies
to twist the arms of future economic competitors. That's what's going
on,
and you need to understand it, then do what you need to do to hold on
to
your humanity. The system does that; tells you you are some kind of
hero
action figures, but uses you as gunmen. They chump you.

Your so-called civilian leadership sees you as an expendable
commodity.
They don't care about your nightmares, about the DU that you are
breathing,
about the lonliness, the doubts, the pain, or about how you humanity is
stripped away a piece at a time. They will cut your benefits, deny your
illnesses, and hide your wounded and dead from the public. They already
are.

They don't care. So you have to. And to preserve your own humanity,
you
must recognize the humanity of the people whose nation you now occupy
and
know that both you and they are victims of the filthy rich bastards who
are
calling the shots.

They are your enemies--The Suits--and they are the enemies of
peace, and
the enemies of your families, especially if they are Black families, or
immigrant families, or poor families. They are thieves and bullies who
take
and never give, and they say they will "never run" in Iraq, but you and
I
know that they will never have to run, because they [censored] aren't
there.
You are

They'll skin and grin while they are getting what they want from
you,
and throw you away like a used condom when they are done. Ask the vets
who
are having their benefits slashed out from under them now. Bushfeld and
their cronies are parasites, and they are the sole beneficiaries of the
chaos you are learning to live in. They get the money. You get the
prosthetic devices, the nightmares, and the mysterious illnesses.

So if your rage needs a target, there they are, responsible for
your
being there, and responsible for keeping you there. I can't tell you to
disobey. That would probably run me afoul of the law. That will be a
decision you will have to take when and if the circumstances and your
own
conscience dictate. But it perfeclty legal for you to refuse illegal
orders,
and orders to abuse or attack civilians are illegal. Ordering you to
keep
silent about these crimes is also illegal.

I can tell you, without fear of legal consequence, that you are
never
under any obligation to hate Iraqis, you are never under any obligation
to
give yourself over to racism and nihilism and the thirst to kill for
the
sake of killing, and you are never under any obligation to let them
drive
out the last vestiges of your capacity to see and tell the truth to
yourself
and to the world. You do not owe them your souls.

Come home safe, and come home sane. The people who love you and who
have
loved you all your lives are waiting here, and we want you to come back
and
be able to look us in the face. Don't leave your souls in the dust
there
like another corpse.

Hold on to your humanity.

Stan Goff

US Army (Ret.)




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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:I am not going to tell you how to live your life, but if I wasnt a doctor I wouldnt tell one how to save a life, I think that things would be better and tension would be lessond if we all applied that idea to our lives. IE not speaking on a subject that we know little on. Like you said befor, you dont know any soldiers, how is it that you feel confident about speeking on their behalf?

Do a little bit of research, those pilots were not on speed, and the military does have the right to refuse any drug be it perscription or whatever. They dont have to be treated for an illness. Try meeting someone and talking to them befor you go out and say how their life is.

When you just blert out a generalisation, it does nothing but make you look bad.

I like how you take one letter of a disgruntled person and treat it like the facts of life, as if it should be rated right up there with "What goes up, must come down".

The point of the matter is, since you dont know any soldiers and since you cant do anything but repeat what someone else says, be kind enough to know when to speek and when not to.

I could care less if you hate bush, the world knows he really aint to bright, to put it mildly, but do not sit at home and complain about something that you not only have little to no grasp of but also something that you can never understand.

Remember the golden rule? Treat others how you want to be treated. Not treat others good when they start treating you good. It isnt show respect to someone only after they first give it to you.

If we would all think more like children this world would be a better place.


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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bluecat
bluecat

geek, level 1
Location: everywhere
Member Since: 15th Dec 2002
Total posts: 5300
Posted:um. where exactly did WHR say "this letter states exactly what i think". i believe the wording was:'here's an interesting letter...worth a read".



i'm not a mod(so you may feel i'm out of order saying this):

but to me that reply goes beyond reasonal debate and into one person saying "shut up cause you know nothing" which will never help us resolve an arguement/debate on something the whole world feels very strongly about.



i have been following this thread very closely as it seems to have been the first tim in a long time this debate has been carried out with respect and consideration... please don't stop that.



as you said yourself laytin treat others how you would like to be treated.



Rob



(aren't most children inquisitive, fun challenging.....and unintentionally cruel...? wink)

EDITED_BY: bluecat (1070442650)


Holistic Spinner (I hope)

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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:You are right, maybe I did push it too far. WHR I apologise if I offended you in any way. I dont see a reason to continue this course of debate in the open arena, but if you wish please feel free to PM me.



Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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wan hwo ren
wan hwo ren

member
Location: I'm not sure
Member Since: 27th Mar 2002
Total posts: 86
Posted:Here's a link about a documentary that I saw a while ago. It was very well done, they interviewed many people from the american military that talked about the drugs they were forced to take. Fighter pilots take uppers before their missions and downers afterwards. Given the doses that the pilots who bombed the canadians had in them, they were quite likely right out of their minds at the time.

Other people described the drugs as making them extremely aggressive, but I don't know what drugs those were.

http://www.cbc.ca/passionateeyemonday/feature_201003.html
br>
and in case you think Canadian public tv might be overly biased in this situation, even the corportate american media reports it:

http://abcnews.go.com/sections/2020/DailyNews/2020_pilotpills021220.html
br>


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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:If you look in the archives, it has been done befor. I do reccomend that you read the post titled something like "Going to war on drugs".

I also saw the CBC documentery, it was shown to us by our Recent History Prof. (My favorite class, if you can take anything like it I highly reccomend it smile )

I viewd it as a hunt. Questions were not balanced, the reporter went into each and every interview driving for a certain point badgering those who were willing to talk.

I know a few US Air Force pilots, one partiualy close as he is soon to be my Father-in-law, a retired US Air Force Colonel. We speek daily since one of his hobies is the history of warfare (something I view as an important topic for anyone who wishes to know anything about life or the lives of those who lived before you). He was around when "go pills" were banned. He laughed at the civilian lawyers who were the driving force behind the AFCoS's decision to ban the drugs. Out of his 25 years in the USAF he was never forced to fly or considerd unfit to fly if he didnt take the pills, nor was his carrer jeprodised as these two young Officers's lawyers said.

He volunterily took the pills because with long sorties in Vietnam and other engagments (things that most civilians never really heard about) the idea of spending close to 24 hours in a cockpit and being expected to tank from a KC-10 while bouncing along the sky at 300 knots without something that kept you awake or steady would be scuicide.

Those pilots were just trying to save their own butts. They screwed up royaly and didnt know what to do and thought they could save their own skins by making a sob story for the media.

The ABC article said they signed for six go pills... how many didnt the pilots take? They were told to take as needed, not take all at once! If you can place the blame on the pills it is only because the pilots did not follow directions.

I would like to point out some grammer used by the Canadian article that punches up the idea. "Almost certainly" Paragraph Two "almost certainly resulting in the deaths of allied forces and innocent civilians". If you look at this part of the scentance, you will see that they have no idea what caused the deaths of innocents and allied forces, but they want to push the blame twords the pills. It could almost certainly be as simple as a civilian crossing the line of fire, or holding a stick that at a distance looked like a weapon. It could almost certainly be allies that were not properly identified, or allies that were not where they were supposed to be.

Both of these articles are extreemly one sided, and have little to no view from the other side of the argument. It is understandable that sombody might take them as gospel truth instead of opinion. It is important for anyone who wishes to debate anything to find out each and every angle befor you go into a debate, that way you know what the opposition will most likly say and what the undistorted truth is.


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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King Of Bongo
King Of Bongo

addict
Location: Berlin
Member Since: 25th Dec 2002
Total posts: 522
Posted:I see your point, but the fact is that they amphetamines may keep you awake for longer on extended tasks and may be useful on long missions, but it still reduces the quality of decisions introducing effects such as paranoia and rapid mood swings- factors that can make you not judge a situation properly. (tell me about it, I'm currently studying the influence such drugs and situational factors can have on decisions- particularly pilots)
Thus it would be unfair to condemn them for manslaughter just like it would be stupid to condemn an insane person for the same thing (temporary insanity of sorts as it were).


Your life is ending one minute at a time...
So live it.

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King Of Bongo
King Of Bongo

addict
Location: Berlin
Member Since: 25th Dec 2002
Total posts: 522
Posted:I was also quite shocked to read those articles, I had no idea the US would prescribe drugs, but looking back on it, I guess its a "beserker" type idea to make their soldiers more effective/less rational.

Your life is ending one minute at a time...
So live it.

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Laytin
member
Location: bottom left of the US
Member Since: 3rd Nov 2003
Total posts: 111
Posted:These drugs are not real anphetomines, they are not the crap that you can buy on the street corner or in your neighbors drug lab. Try to think of it as more along the lines of a caffeen pill, perscription streangth.

KOB, I feel that you are reading into this wrong. It isnt an attempt to make the soldiers and pilots not care, it is an attempt to keep them awake so that they may stay alive! That is the second most important thing. (the first being the accomplishment of the mission)


I do like the change of heart about the "government controled media". Some here like to think that the US Government is cencoring the media, telling it what it can and can not report on. While this might be true to a degree, it isnt to the extent that some would have others believe. Then there is an interesting change of mind or opinion where people take the government controled US media at face value as if everything said were pure fact with no possibility of error.

I am not saying that WHR did this or anybody in particuler, just an observation smile


Wisdom calls aloud in the street, she raises her voice in the public squares; at the head of noisy streets she cries out, in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

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wan hwo ren
wan hwo ren

member
Location: I'm not sure
Member Since: 27th Mar 2002
Total posts: 86
Posted:
Quote:
These drugs are not real anphetomines, they are not the crap that you can buy on the street corner or in your neighbors drug lab. Try to think of it as more along the lines of a caffeen pill, perscription streangth.



I could try to think of them as caffeine pills instead of Amphetamines but that just wouldn't be true, would it??

Quote:
Amphetamines, a prescription drug, are known on the street as uppers or speed. Yet, a 20/20 investigation has found, the amphetamines, the speed pills, are now standard issue to U.S. Air Force combat pilots, to help them stay awake on long combat sorties.



Quote:
I do like the change of heart about the "government controled media". Some here like to think that the US Government is cencoring the media, telling it what it can and can not report on. While this might be true to a degree, it isnt to the extent that some would have others believe. Then there is an interesting change of mind or opinion where people take the government controled US media at face value as if everything said were pure fact with no possibility of error.

I am not saying that WHR did this or anybody in particuler, just an observation




I'm not really sure what your point is Laytin.

I think it's important to think independently and critically, there is bias in almost any type of media. It would be silly to accept any particular source of information as the absolute truth.



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