Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Current Events for the Students

Here is your open thread to post current events. I'm going to respond to them all like I tried to do yesterday, and I'm probably going to take a 180 degree opposing view to the side you took, so don't feel like I'm attacking you...I'm just trying to make you further your arguments.

I'd love it if you would respond to my comments, and I'd also love it if you would discuss comments from other people, especially if it relates to what you wrote about...

Thanks guys, you're doing an awesome job.

Update: Don't forget to put a link to the article that you posted...at least copy and paste it into the text, but it would be better to use it as your "web page" where you type in your name...
We need context for your posts...

There might be problems if you try to post after 8 or 9 o'clock...if it doesn't work, try again later, and keep checking back. It should be okay around 9:20.


  1. Ben,
    I think militia leader Peter Karim was given the position
    of colonel in the National Army because officials recognize that he is an experienced military leader and would be able to train and command soldiers effectively. By putting him in power it may also serve as a deterrent for people who might be planning to interfere with the elections. It is possible that Karim is just what the army needs, an authoritative figure that understands how to combat guerrilla warfare because of his experience in engaging in such acts.

  2. A person who cares7/18/06, 2:44 PM

    HEY GUYS! There are turmiols in other regions also.
    Today current event is about crisis in Dafur. The UN wants to send peacekeepers and increase funding.
    I am not really familiar with the actions that the Sudanese gov't and the intl com. have taken so far. But from what I have read, I think that the world needs to pay attention to this crisis closely. By continuing to be stingy and underfunding the releif efforts, thousands of refugees are dying (GENOCIDE. Terrorists might take the opportunity to recruit the refugees to join them in fighting against the West. Different ethnics within a counrty create a political, socail, and economic instability. The entire continent might fall apart due to the lack of unity and security. What should we do about this crisis? I personally think that the super powers should give equal attention to all the conflicts that happen around the world. In dealing with Dafur, the first thing the refugees need is food and security. FUNDING FOR THIS CAUSE SHOULD NOT BE A PROBLEM.


  3. World powers decided to send Iran back to the United Nations Security Council for possible punishment.

    To be quite honest I am tired of hearing empty threats targeted at North Korea and Iran. I believe diplomacy should always be given a chance and communication between countries is essential in solving issues around the world. At this point the U.S. and other countries sound like an angry parent threatening to send their kid to bed early. I think at this point we should leave Iran alone. They know our position on the subject of enriching uranium and do not care. In the event that Iran does something that directly threatens the US then we should use air strikes to obliterate their nuclear facilities as well as other military installations and prepare for any implications, whether in the form of military retaliation or international criticism.

  4. The UN reported recently that 3,149 civilians died over the month of June in Iraq. This makes it the most deadly month since the fall of Baghdad, and it's up 77% from January.

    This is sick. 100 deaths per day is intolerable. Unlike my Israel prediction yesterday, I don't think that these acts of terrorism will slow down. Though it is easier said than done, the US' policy needs to change. Instead of hunting and killing terrorists - which only creates more - the government needs to start appealing more to the public and getting their support. This will not immediately lower death tolls, but in the long run it will help. Unfortunately, I don't think the president of the US, or his administration, will do anything along these lines.

    Question: Has the US been removing any troops over the past months, or does it still have the same amount now?

  5. U.S. troops in Afganistan are preparing to retake two Taliban occupided towns. The 10,000 troops are going to try and re-establish government authority in the towns.

    It seems that the U.S. want to now extend its authority over Afghanistan, not just the city of Kabul. I think that this is an ill conceived fight though, because it will take more than just 10,000 troops to control the entire country, if hte US wants to go that far. Also, the Taliban has many more fighters at its disposal, and probably more and more recruits are showing up each day. I think that it is a waste of troops for a fight that the American public does not really want anything to do with. Even if we could control the entire country, we would have to stay there for who knows how long to keep order...wow, sound familiar, like Iraq, and we can see where that one ended up. I think we should try and resolve the situation diplomaticaly and get out while we still can.

  6. Car bombing kills dozens in Iraq

    These Iraqi radicals are sick. Bombing innocent civilians over ethnic differences and political strife. Two days in a row, dozens of Iraqis have been killed over political unrest. Many in the region blame militant Sunni and Shia forces for the repeated attacks against each other.
    The only good thing is that attacks have not been aimed at US troops or allies. The situation seems to have taken a turn from anti Americanism to domestic distress of ethnic differences.
    It was also reported that coalition forces are attempting to police areas and keep peace for the moment while Iraqi forces continue to train. This shows how Allied coalition forces cannot be removed from this unstable region before the Iraqi government can fend for itself. If we were to leave now, who knows what could happen in the future? Without security or military force, the region could fall into seperation and civil war, completly destroying the hard work already done to create a working government. If Iraq does not have a legitimate government, the nation will go into a downward spiral of disunification, which no one really wants.
    Your Boy,
    Charles Greenlief Street V
    (thats right, the fifth)

  7. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, grudgingly accepted the recent ruling by the Supreme Court about the procedure for handling suspected terrorists.

    It is my understanding that it is possible for current military-commision procedures to continue with Congressional approval. This makes me wonder, why didn't the Bush administration try to get Congressional approval in the first place? I understand why the administration believes that these military tribunals for the possibly dangerous suspected terrorists. But in a time of war, I would think that those in charge would have made sure that their practices would hold up in court. The terrorists don't play by the rules, but does that mean that we shouldn't either? Isn't it cynical to think that the only way to fight these guys effectively is to compromise our legal system? I guess when we're in "win at all costs" mode, laws take a back seat to national security.

  8. A passage to the Gaza Strip from Egypt was open for 11 hours today. The UN only allowed “humanitarian cases” to pass through. Palestinians closed this passage when they caught an Israeli soldier trying to sneak through.
    Several people died from waiting in the heat for the passage to open.

    This blockage of a passageway seems extreme. I don’t think that one soldier should determine the deaths of multiple civilians from heatstroke. 2,000 people are currently waiting to cross the border. I know that the Gaza Strip is a highly secured piece of land, but to keep Gazans stranded outside of their own country seems too much.

    Question: Is this a violation of human rights on the part of the Palestinians towards Gazan civilians?


  9. Great comments.

    Sovita is right on--we should be looking at a "war on terror" from a global perspective if we really mean to address the threat.

    Nick, I think you would change your mind about the nuclear option after reading the Atlantic Monthly article in a few days.

    Interesting juxtaposition between Charlie's and Dan's comments. Are they all wrong?

    And what the heck is Simon writing about? Are we still in Afghanistan?

    Andrew, did you also happen to catch the comments by Gonzales that Bush blocked an investigation into unauthorized surveillance? Where are the rules of the game?

    Keep up the good work!

  10. One More Week to Blast Away! Apparently the US has given Israel the green light on its offensive in Lebanon. Seems to fit my earlier predictions that Israel will be pressing for an advantage before backing off and negotiating a two state deal (with a finger still on the trigger).

    Hard to imagine that this all goes away in one week, though. More likely, anti-Israeli forces retaliate, things spiral out of control again, and someone (US? UN? EU?) steps in to negotiate a settlement that occurs on Israel's terms.

  11. The US has been in discussion with the Czech Republic for two years about the possibility of a missile defense base located in their country. The base would belong to the US with the purpose of shooting down long-range missiles before they reached their target in either the US or Europe. This could become controversial for the Czech Republic because of the added US presence in their country that would come along with the base. They might not want to have a place that is, presumably, under our jurisdiction in their country. However, it would also give them an added element of protection—especially if a missile was to be launched, they would have security knowing that their country had a means to protect itself—even if it is essentially the US that would be protecting them. I can only think of positive things for the US if the base were to be built. We would have a greater defense system for our own country and could make friends by protecting others from attack. The only thing that could get tricky is the dealings with the citizens of the Czech Republic who might not support the idea. Read more . . .

  12. Car bombing kills dozens in Iraq

    At least 53 Shias were killed in an attack caused by Sunni terrorists.

    A common goal of terrorist groups in Iraq seems to be to get the US troops out of there. They are not accomplishing this goal when they attack one another. It seems to me that the terrorist groups are trying to accomplish too much at once. They could potentially be more successful if they were to work together but then it is likely civil war would immediately break out as soon as the US was no longer involved. Hmmm...

  13. You've all probably heard at least some mention of the tsunami in Indonesia. Although this one was not nearly as large as last year's, it certainly devastated the region.

    We sometimes forget that there are diasters that occur outside the realm of human control. Such events, however, are equally important to politics, and achieving the ever elusive world peace. Kaplan predicted that the enviornment would act as a catalyst for future political violence; that resources, and their shortages, would ultimately become as relevant a factor in warfare as ideological differences. We need to keep our eye on the ozone layer, etc. as well as on Kim Jong Il and those other crazies, because both can produce disorder and violence. Just because global warming might not have as tangible a solution as the pending catastrophe in North Korea (for which there is hardly a tangible solution at all), does not mean that enviornmental problems are any less pressing.

    On that note, I'll admit that I own birkenstocks, but I don't wear them often because they give me blisters.

  14. I know that lots of people have already commented on the violence in Iraq but tonights reading made me look at the violence from a different view.

    People in Iraq keep getting killed, the attacks are not always on civilians but also on the American and Iraqi armies.

    The insurgents seem to want the armies out of Iraq, I think that this is because Iraq is a nation built upon the fundamentals of the Islamic religion and the "Islamic creed calls for a government of advice and consultation" (Esposito 23)The insurgents are fighting against a form of government that goes against their religion. The United States should look at this issue from the Iraqi's view also and try and find an alternative that agrees with the Islamic religion and also with what the US wants to accomplish.

    Question: Do you guys think that there would be more peace in Iraq if a government was in place that agreed with the Islamic religion? I would love to hear everyones opinions on this!

  15. Emma,
    the terrorist mind only understands strength through the force of arms. A more 'legitimate' Iraqi gov't would be one with a competant military/police force for keeping the general peace and the borders. And also a world class cadre of quick response special forces that they weren't afraid to use to put the boot to the neck of those needing it. I doubt making it less Democratic would be of any benefit.

  16. Hello everyone, I would like to inform you that Isael has kept up its three week ofensive in the Gaza strip. Overnight warplanes flew over Gaza bombing three tunnels that were supposedly being used to channel weapons. There purpose of this was to stop the attacks of the Palestinian militants. However, if Israel is going to attack then Palestinians are going to fight back. This is a vicious cycle.
    Also, Israel militants said there aim was to target "terror infrastructure." I don't believe this is true because innocent civilians were being killed. The Isaelians are becoming terrorist. They are being hypocrits in the sence that they don't want terrorist attacking them but at the same time they are attacking everyone else. They are not creating any sort of control. If anything more things are becoming chaotic and they need to settle down otherwise the middle east are going to have a lot more issues.