Western Conservative Conference Peddles Paranoia »« ‘Coach’ Dave Mystified Why He Wasn’t Hired

Really, John Kerry?

The Academy Awards were Sunday night and the award for best actor really should have gone to John Kerry for managing to deliver this line about the Russian invasion of Crimea without busting a gut laughing.

“You just don’t invade another country on phony pretext in order to assert your interests. This is an act of aggression that is completely trumped up in terms of its pretext. It’s really 19th century behavior in the 21st century.”

Gulf of Tonkin, anyone? Iraqi WMDs? For crying out loud, the United States are the Jedi masters of starting wars on false pretexts. In related news, the pot and the kettle were killed in a bar fight outside Kiev.

Comments

  1. colnago80 says

    Gulf of Tonkin, anyone? Iraqi WMDs? For crying out loud, the United States are the Jedi masters of starting wars on false pretexts. In related news, the pot and the kettle were killed in a bar fight outside Kiev.

    But those didn’t take place in the 21th Century so they don’t count.

  2. says

    Colnago80 – Iraqi WMDs were the Bush administration, so yes, 21st Century.

    On the post at hand, conservatives are rambling on about Obama being weak, but the problem is that the United States no longer has a moral leg to stand on. When your government officials make pronouncements like this, I have to wonder who they are talking to because nobody outside of your borders takes them seriously.

  3. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    “Iraqi WMDs” did, though I wouldn’t expect someone stuck in the stone age to be familiar with that level of fiddly detail.

  4. MattieF says

    The US did not have the goal of territorial expansion in either of those wars. Iraq is today governed by Iraqis, Vietnam by Vietnamese. But Crimea will fly the flag of Russia now.

  5. Azkyroth Drinked the Grammar Too :) says

    The US did not have the goal of territorial expansion in either of those wars.

    Pull. My. Finger.

  6. matty1 says

    @4 “The US did not have the goal of territorial expansion in either of those wars. Iraq is today governed by Iraqis, Vietnam by Vietnamese.”

    You are aware that America was on the losing side in Vietnam and doesn’t get credit for things that happened after they lost?

  7. matty1 says

    To expand that claim is like using the fact Iraqi troops were driven out of Kuwait in 1991 as evidence that Saddam never intended to occupy it.

  8. says

    What makes America different from other global empires is not the goal of territorial conquest but rather to buttress a system that furthers American influence, including friendly governments that permit us to have military bases, negotiate trade agreements favorable to us, etc.

  9. says

    The US did not have the goal of territorial expansion in either of those wars. Iraq is today governed by Iraqis,

    Yeah, right. That’s why the US built huge permanent bases and embassies, then finally left only after Iraqi insurgents made it clear that the casualty rate for the US soldiers stationed there would be unacceptably high for as long as it took.

  10. says

    “The US did not have the goal of territorial expansion’

    Boy, am I glad I stopped by when I did.

    Do you know who ELSE had no goals of territorial expansion, he just wanted a little “living room”, hmmm?

    Tsar Putinhisdickintehwringer is counting on a complacent world community to let him nibble around the edges of the former “client states” of the CCCP until he gets invited to Munic–but it’s just for the Oktoberfest bier at the Hofbrau Haus, honest–and yes, those 30 or so divisions, they ARE thirsty.

    What is it Charlie Sheen would say in this situation? Oh yeah:

    godWINNING!

  11. Carlos Cabanita says

    I was born in one of those countries with a government very friendly to the USA but, damn, very unfriendly towards its own people.

  12. says

    Following is a repost of a comment I made in your previous thread on this subject:

    [America's hypocricy] doesn’t necessarily mean that keeping silent is a good idea. There was a lot of antisemitism in the US and UK back in the 1930s and ’40s — should that have precluded us from doing anything about the Nazis? There was a lot of racism in the US in the 1980s (as there always is) — should that have precluded us from criticizing apartheid in South Africa?

    Just because we’re a bit hypocritical doesn’t mean we should shut up and let others get away with murder and oppression. When something goes dangerously wrong in some other part of the world, we can’t always wait till we’re above all reproach to do something about it.

  13. dshetty says

    @Raging Bee
    Just because we’re a bit hypocritical doesn’t mean we should shut up and let others get away with murder and oppression. When something goes dangerously wrong in some other part of the world, we can’t always wait till we’re above all reproach to do something about it.
    Because you’ll are such good judges of this?
    Because you’ll leave the world a better place, after interference?
    Because you’ll have a great track record of backing the *right* side?

  14. says

    Because you’ll are such good judges of this?

    Are you a better judge? Should we never judge anything anyone else does?

    Because you’ll leave the world a better place, after interference?

    Sometimes, yes, we have left the world a better place after our interference.

    Because you’ll have a great track record of backing the *right* side?

    We have a far better track record than a lot of other powerful countries — including Russia.

  15. JustaTech says

    Is it possible to have a good track record when it comes to military intervention? I mean, any country that has a big enough military to do something with it has used it for agression in the past. And what are the statue of limitations on “bad” military interventions? 100 years? 200? 500? As far as I can tell, being a country with a big military means being an asshole (on a geo-political scale, with hundreds of deaths) at some point in your history. Otherwise you wouldn’t have ever had a military. The only countries with a totally clean slate are those who’ve never had the opportunity (size, geography, age).

    Therefore, the only countries with militaries large enough to tell other countries to stop invading are countries that have done some invading in the past. Right? Am I missing something?

  16. dshetty says

    Are you a better judge? Should we never judge anything anyone else does?
    Im not the one advocating “do something about it” _ Im already aware of my limitations – you arent.

    We have a far better track record than a lot of other powerful countries — including Russia.
    If that satisfies you I suppose there is nothing else to be said -
    but bear in mind you are making this statement to someone whose native country faces terrorist attacks , partly funded by your country.

  17. Nick Gotts says

    On the post at hand, conservatives are rambling on about Obama being weak, but the problem is that the United States no longer has a moral leg to stand on. – Tabby Lavalamp

    Well, that’s one problem. Another is that no western leader, or populace, is actually willing (thank rationality) to die for Ukraine’s territorial integrity. Or even (and here there might be a sufficient moral case for doing so, but it’s not obvious, considering the knock-on effects) give up the economic and political advantages of trade, investment and financial ties with Russia. However, the British government has told Prince Edward not to attend the Paralympics in Sochi. That’ll bring Putin to heel!

  18. Nick Gotts says

    We have a far better track record than a lot of other powerful countries — including Russia. – Raging Bee

    *guffaw*

    Even if you don’t count the long string of broken treaties with Indian nations and the shameless war of aggression against Mexico, there’s the Spanish-American war, a long, long string of interventions to prop up friendly dictatorships in Latin America, support for numerous unpleasnat or even savage dictatorships elsewhere during the Cold War (Philppines, Indonesia – and East Timor, West Papua), South Korea, Taiwan, Iran, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Egypt, Ethiopia…), Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, support for Portuguese colonialism and apartheid South Africa, continued support for Israeli oppression of the Palestinians, and for the absolute monarchies of Arabia, the illegal invasion of Iraq…

  19. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    @Nick Gotts
    Honest question. I don’t know how I feel. You’re glad that no one is willing to stand up to Russia because you don’t think fighting for their country is worth it? Or because you think there are better tactics? Are you ok with throwing Ukraine to the wolves? Do you think it was right to stop Germany in WW2 from annexing a bunch of countries? What’s the difference?

    I agree the US foreign policy is atrocious, and whatever answers we come up with should be applied to ourselves. I still don’t like the idea of giving the bully everything he wants. This seems like appeasement comparable to the appeasement of Germany before WW2 when they annexed a couple small countries. Of course, I don’t think Putin is going to soon order genocide on conquered areas, but I see parallels elsewhere.

    I admit it’s entirely fantasy, but a part of me wonders “What if the world’s governments were not evil, and everyone single one of them would ally vs Russia in a simple and clear statement ‘No, you can’t do that shit’. If Russia is reasonable, they would back down. If Russia is not reasonable, then there’s an unreasonable country with nuclear weapons and we’re already fucked.”

  20. says

    Im already aware of my limitations – you arent.

    On what evidence do you base that allegation?

    bear in mind you are making this statement to someone whose native country faces terrorist attacks, partly funded by your country.

    I’m also talking to people who live in countries that my country helped to liberate from both Nazi and Stalinist tyranny.

  21. Ichthyic says

    What makes America different from other global empires is not the goal of territorial conquest but rather to buttress a system that furthers American influence, including friendly governments that permit us to have military bases, negotiate trade agreements favorable to us, etc.

    IOW, they took a page out of the playbook for the Roman Empire.

  22. Ichthyic says

    According to Lindsey Graham, Putin only invaded the Ukraine because of Benghazi.

    ROFLMAO

    man, the insanity has reached the point of being self-sustaining.

  23. Ichthyic says

    including friendly governments that permit us to have military bases, negotiate trade agreements favorable to us, etc.

    btw, that’s exactly what Russia had been doing in the Ukraine up to the point where the deals they set up with Yanukovich fell through.

    simplified modern politics:

    Russia is basically a giant organized crime syndicate, old style (think of Putin like a modern day Al Capone).

    the US is basically an oligarchy run by white collar criminals.

    both systems’ leaders rationalize that their behavior is also what is “best” for their countries at large. Both are insanely wrong.

    the rest just spins off of those things in the large wrt to economic and foreign policy, though there are of course a LOT of issues (especially social) where there’s enough wiggle room to make it still worth participating in the political process from an individual standpoint.

    that latter bit is where I think those saying dems = republicans, for example, are being overly simplistic.

  24. dshetty says

    @raging bee
    On what evidence do you base that allegation?
    On your comments of course

    I’m also talking to people who live in countries that my country helped to liberate from both Nazi and Stalinist tyranny.

    offtopic but I wonder if you accept such examples when it comes to religion – for e.g. defense by the catholic church about how much good they do so we can forgive them a little pedophilia hiding?

  25. says

    I’m not trying to cover up my country’s misdeeds, or avoid accountability for them, so your comparison is invalid. Also, governments are necessary in a way that churches are not.

    Also, none of my comments really support any of your allegations about me. You really don’t know what you’re talking about.

  26. Synfandel says

    As far as I can tell, being a country with a big military means being an asshole (on a geo-political scale, with hundreds of deaths) at some point in your history.

    Claiming the moral high ground on matters of foreign invasion and foreign intervention is, as has been well explained above, for the United States, the height of hypocrisy. That being said, there is a modicum of truth to Raging Bee’s position. As Spiderman was told, “With great power comes great responsibility.” How that should be applied in this particular instance is not clear. A good start would be to stop invading and interfering on the justification of the United States’ “national interest”. If interest were a valid moral argument, I would be robbing banks, because it’s in my interest.

  27. says

    A good start would be to stop invading and interfering on the justification of the United States’ “national interest”.

    To put it more precisely, a good start would be to kick all that hysteria, ignorance and bigotry out of our policy-making process, and adopt a clear and sensible assessment of what our national interest really is, before deciding to use force anywhere.

    If interest were a valid moral argument, I would be robbing banks, because it’s in my interest.

    Actually, no, it isn’t — that would do you more harm than good, unless you managed the extremely improbable feat of stealing a HUGE amount of money and getting away with it. Otherwise you’d just be endangering yourself and undermining the social order that is the source of most of your long-term prosperity. Dominic Toretto is not a real person.

    How that should be applied in this particular instance is not clear.

    Actual US military action against the Russians in Crimea is pretty much out of the question, for several reasons (duh). OTOH, if Putin gets away with taking this piece of land away from a sovereign state, that will cause huge problems for Europe, since tyrants who get away with one act of aggression normally follow it with more aggression. And as I said before, there are plenty of other places that Putin can invade using the same excuse he’s using in Crimea.

    Also, any military success Putin wins abroad will solidify his position at home, and make internal opposition, and any move toward greater freedom or democracy, all the more impossible. We probably can’t stop him in Crimea — but that only means we’ll have to stop him somewhere else.

    Short answer: this could lead to a sociopolitical disaster of WW-II proportions.

  28. dshetty says

    @raging bee
    Last response
    so your comparison is invalid. Also, governments are necessary in a way that churches are not.
    The point of the analogy is that responses of the form “but we do good also” ,”other people do it as well” to accusations of “you have done evil” are poor responses, are logical fallacies, and in addition are not accepted by you, yourself in other contexts . The point was not to say you are covering up or condoning the evil or the mandatory – ness of governments (really?)

    You really don’t know what you’re talking about.
    You are the one advocating some action [Im assuming strong rhetoric, followed by international pressure(good luck with that) followed by sanctions (good luck with that), followed by force(really?) - most likely unilaterally by the US and its allies since Russia has a veto in the UN]
    Plus you are advocating that action to be carried out by the same set of clowns who have displayed such wonderful judgment and have executed wars so efficiently , so devoid of corruption , by a government that runs so smoothly (only when it comes to taking away rights or privacy or carrying out illegal attacks on sovereign countries)- and in addition you want to insist that you are aware of your limitations. Well ok.

  29. EnlightenmentLiberal says

    unilaterally by the US and its allies
    unilaterally
    by the US and its allies
    and its allies
    You use that word, but I do not think that you know what it means.

    What Russia has done – that was done unilaterally.

  30. Carlos Cabanita says

    I suspect even USA liberals tend to have a self-soothing narrative about what the external policy of the US. Something along the lines of “we did bad stuff in some places, but overall we’ve been neat, compared with the other guys”.
    To dispel that kind of illusions, I suggest an intensive reading of http://www.chomsky.info

  31. dingojack says

    Carlos Cabanita – firstly, Noam Chomsky? Really? You’d be better off getting lessons in geopolitics from Aesop.
    Secondly*, so your country (where ever that is) has never, ever done anything wrong, ever? If there is even the hint of impropriety then you can’t possibly criticise, because if you do you’re a terrible, terrible hypocrite. Really? You think that’s how politics works in the real world? Or is this some righteous teenage hard-on you’ve got going there?
    Dingo
    ——–
    * much as I loathe defending the US (or Russia), but sometimes one needs to inject some realpolitik

Leave a Reply