Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Who do you fear?

In From the Cold highlights what enemy we fear the most.

Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne is likely to find himself in hot water, over his recent suggestion to test new, non-lethal weapons on Americans--before they're used on the battlefield. He believes that prior, domestic use would make it easier to avoid questions in the international community over "safety concerns." "If we're not willing to use it here against our fellow citizens, then we should not be willing to use it in a wartime situation," said Wynne.

Not only is this idea illogical--by his standard, we should have dropped an atomic bomb on a U.S. city before the strike on Hiroshima--it also puts us on a slippery slope, allowing the international community to essentially dictate what weapons can and cannot be used.

But what about the press? What about Amnesty International? The new nursery rhyme is "Sticks and stones can't break your bones. But words can really hurt you."

9 Comments:

Blogger Woman Catholic said...

wretchard wrote:

The new nursery rhyme is "Sticks and stones can't break your bones. But words can really hurt you."

Well that's why we took our mean old interrogators out of Abu Grahib prison with their harsh rapid-fire questioning for hours at a time, and turned it over to new Iraqi management wielding those cute and harmless sticks and stones. The number of abuse scandals reported in the media seems to have fallen precipitously.

9/13/2006 06:03:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

I really wonder what the SECAF meant.

On one hand, we usually test weapons here at home before using them in combat - including the atomic bomb. In fact, in the 50's we even set off an atomic blast and then had soliders move into the surrounding area to study the efefctys. On another occasion a Genie nuclear antiaircraft rocket was detonated directly above military observers in order to confirm that it could be used without nuking the people on the ground that it was being used to protect.

But since we are talking about nonlethal weapons in this case, he probably means that Americans should be used to prove that the weapons are indeed nonlethal before employing them in combat. Given that they won't let us use the people at GITMO, I see little choice but to use ourselves. On the other hand, some ads in the Mexican papers might be effective in soliciting recruits. Or perhaps the people who used to work at the bombing range in Puerto Rico and were laid off when protests led to the facility being closed would appreciate the employment.

But the most disturbing aspect of the SECAF's statement was his saying "... and if we don't do it this way, I would be villified in the world's press."

Giving your enemy the right to pass judgement on your proposed actions is a serious mistake, but that pales in comparision to allowing "the world's press" to drive your planning. They are not only our enemy, they are stupid.

9/14/2006 07:09:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

Teresita: After 9/11/01 I thought of the horror that the people in the WTC, the Pentagon, and in those airplanes had been subjected to.

I recalled that only a month or so before David Horowitz had quite deliberately made a major point by taking out ads in college newspapers against the concept of slavery reparations. The result was outrage in certain quarters, and one quote I particularly recall was someone saying that the ads "really, really hurt them bad."

People jumping out of skyscrapers to prevent being burned to death, people rushing up stairs tor try to help others even though they knew they probably would never come down those stairs again , people choosing to die fighting rather than spend their last moments on Earth talking to their loved ones.

And people who are "hurt really, really bad" by a newspaper ad - and that's the world we are fighting to return to.

9/14/2006 07:19:00 AM  
Blogger dr.dna said...

um. it says non-lethal weapons.

no one said anything about testing lethal weapons, much less an atomic bomb on americans. duh.

9/14/2006 08:07:00 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

It still comes across as rather odd. However, I think that this would be treated as a medical study. Volunteers are recruited and paid to be test subjects for new medicines. Why not non-lethal weapons? Although I wonder how many people will really sign up for something like this. Maybe if they are paid really, really well.

9/14/2006 08:13:00 AM  
Blogger TM Lutas said...

I think that in this context, "vilified by the world press" is military PC speak for "empowering the disloyal opposition to make a mockery of our dead and pulling out before the mission is done" and when restated as such makes eminent good sense.

But then again we waterboard our own troops in SERE and that doesn't stop the technique from being classified as torture by the opposition.

9/14/2006 10:32:00 AM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

rwe said:

Giving your enemy the right to pass judgement on your proposed actions is a serious mistake, but that pales in comparision to allowing "the world's press" to drive your planning. They are not only our enemy, they are stupid.

My enemies can pass judgment on my proposed actions all they want, because my proposed actions won't be the actions I actually use on them in the field (Master Sun Tzu and all that OPDEC tommyrot). The press is indeed too stupid to drive our planning, but anyone who lets the press drive our planning should be fired for being even more stupid, even if it takes 4 or 6 years and the intervention of an election.

9/14/2006 11:49:00 AM  
Blogger Robert Schwartz said...

"But then again we waterboard our own troops in SERE and that doesn't stop the technique from being classified as torture by the opposition."

Heck, they regard playing loud rap (non)music as torture.

9/14/2006 02:01:00 PM  
Blogger Jem said...

First things first: The headline is VERY misleading. Secretary Wynne did NOT suggest testing weapons--he suggested fielding already-tested, non-lethal crowd control weapons domestically if we wanted to have the military use them in foreign settings.

Complaining vociferously about employing non-lethal means is pretty ironic, considering the alternative is to use lethal force against protesters (by the way, having soldiers carry rubber rounds as well as lethal rounds would inevitably result in unintentional use of lethal force, so directing mixed loads would result in lethal force). I'd argue the lethal option would be worse for US objectives than non-lethal and that allowing US police forces to benefit from non-lethal technology development by the military is simply smart policy.

9/16/2006 09:20:00 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home


Powered by Blogger