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post #81 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by NoahJ:
<strong>For those who say we should get over it and look for a diplomatic solution rather than trying to rid the world of these terrorist networks you have at least one ally in your thinking. <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A2246-2001Nov22.html" target="_blank">The Taliban</a>. </strong><hr></blockquote>

You tool. They can't be both. They're either bloodthirsty murderers that don't want peace or they think a diplomatic solution should be found. Make up your mind.
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post #82 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Scott H.:
<strong>


Just trying to put a human face on the people killed by the terrorist that you respect. Your words. Not mine. You respect them. I guess I do to but only as an deadly enemy that needs to be wiped out.</strong><hr></blockquote>

I think that feeling is mutual.

Maybe you would be helped by trying to see that there is a grey area between black and white? Numerous times now, have I stated in this thread that I do not respect their killing of people but their willingness to die for their cause. Those are two entirely different things.

You insist that there are only two possibilities. Wrong or right. That is just as big a pile of bull as Bush saying "You're either with us or against us".

The sad fact of the matter is that as long as the U.S and it's allies keep solving matters by force there will be terrorists doing the same. It's a chicken and egg situation really. Do we have terrorists because of our tendency to throw bombs at those that don't see things our way or do we have to throw bombs because there are terrorists. You can't answer that because you don't have the knowledge for it.

I can tell you this though, from my own background. In Ireland, there were no terrorists before the Brits came, just civil war. Then again, civil war is our own business.

Think about it. Before Israel was formed, how many Arabs hated the U.S? There were no terrorist hits to prove they did anyway.
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post #83 of 150
If you're looking for who's right and who's wrong, you're looking at it all wrong. We're all wrong, no one is right, there' nopoint in justifying anyone's motivations on either side because this is obviously just part of an endless (until we kill ourselves) cycle we cannot stop, ignore, fix, redirect or affect in any meaningful way. It's bigger than any of us and we are all powerless, even Osama bin Laden, George W. Bush Abaraham and Mohammed.

PS: The fact that someone will respect someone else just because they believe in something, anything, is pretty sad. There are good ideas and bad ones, just having them isn't enough.

[ 11-23-2001: Message edited by: BuonRotto ]</p>
post #84 of 150
See I don't understand what you term freedom fighter anyway, If I take a fancy to cutting peoples throats and somebody tries to stop me doing this then surely they're restricting my freedom!? Am I thusly a hero? I doubt it!

The IRA are freedom fighters? f*ck off, as an irishman living in London I can tell you that that only a tiny minority of people actually in any way agree with the IRA or UDF or whoever, the rest of the people just want to live their lives happily and safely, England, Ireland, who gives a sh*t they're both going to want taxes.

These people are fighting because they enjoy it, Bin Laden 'enjoys' what he does, he's on a big ego trip. He wants to be big because inside he's small just like Adolf Hitler. does anyone really think that he cares about the plight of Muslims in Palestine? I can't believe that anyone out there can be that naive.

Anyway this conversation is pointless as a guy said in a previous post, 'majority rule' and on that basis in 1000 years time we'll all be Chinese anyway, which suits me.
post #85 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by BuonRotto:
<strong>PS: The fact that someone will respect someone else just because they believe in something, anything, is pretty sad. There are good ideas and bad ones, just having them isn't enough.</strong><hr></blockquote>Well put. I was going to write a 500 word essay on this point, but this said it better than I was going to.
post #86 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by macoracle:
<strong>

I think that feeling is mutual.

Maybe you would be helped by trying to see that there is a grey area between black and white?</strong><hr></blockquote>

Not when it comes to terrorist.
post #87 of 150
[quote]Not when it comes to terrorist.<hr></blockquote>

I'd suggest that some portion of the West makes a serious attempt to understand what breeds terrorism so we will be able preempt the development thereof. The creation of potential terrorist leaders is probably impossible to avoid, but I believe their minions (ulitmately the terrorists themselves) can be corrected.
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post #88 of 150
Macoracle: [quote]Maybe you would be helped by trying to see that there is a grey area between black and white?<hr></blockquote>


Scott H: [quote]Not when it comes to terrorist.<hr></blockquote>

Scott H., to support your argument, please supply a definition of "terrorism" and "terrorist"?
I read the FBI definition recently...and it reads very similarly to the one stated earlier in this thread.

When it comes down to our "war on terrorists", it is highly selective. We have funded and continue to fund paramilitary groups all over the world whose modus operandi neatly fits the 'terrorism' mold. We still maintain relations with heads of state and high ranking officials who have committed terrorist acts (and genocide). We still run a tax-payer funded organization, formerly the "School of the Americas" now euphemistically known as the "Western Hemisphere Institute of Security Cooperation". based in Fort Benning, which is no better than a "University of Terrorism". Its graduates include many of South and Central America's most notorious terrorists, trained and funded by the US Defense Dept. We give Israel a $3.5 million handout each year; they have an ex-terrorist (if there is such a thing) for a Prime Minister and their actions of "targeted assassinations" are as much "terrorism" as the the actions of the Palestinian suicide bombers. American based groups supply the IRA with weapons and funds. $$Billions have been funnelled to fanatical Islamic Mujahadeen extremists in Afghanistan since the USSR invasion, including Al Qaeda personnel; have these people not committed terrorist acts? We supplied the likes of Indonesia under Suharto with $billions in weapons used to kill over a million east Timorese. We supported the Chinese invasion and current occupation of Tibet. We even handed the Taliban $45 million for opium eradication just prior to Sept 11. Who's going to have a go at us next? Some angry Colombian paramilitary group whose enemies are receiving $billions in funds and weaponry from the US in our supposed "war on drugs"? There are literally hundreds of well documented incidents where US Government agencies (and private parties) have funded and supported international and domestic terrorism. (Naturally these issues do not get coverage in the corporate media, for obvious reasons). Unfortunately for America we either don't want to hear it, or we are in denial.

I am abundantly aware that there are, on this board people who feel that any commentary criticizing US policy, both domestic and foreign, in the war against terror, is anti-American. I sincerely hope nobody misunderstands me, in thinking that I am on some anti-American trip; Make no mistake about it, I love my country as much as anyone, and the events of Sept 11 made me as angry and sad as it is possible to become. I felt that President Bush and Mayor Giuliani did a heroic job of consoling and unifying us in the aftermath of that horrific day. Who didn't? But at the same time it angers and saddens me that we fund and encourage the type of behaviors and methods that eventually resulted in 5000 people b
being murdered in NYC and DC.

Supporting, funding and harboring terrorism ANYWHERE on the planet is at the very least wrong and counterproductive, be it Bogota or Boston. More realistically, is it treasonous, unpatriotic, Anti-American and downright evil.

It would be such a relief to see America and Americans welcomed with open arms in every country on Earth. But now terrorism has entered our consciousness and the horse has bolted. What do we do? We can make our nation a maximum security state. We can abandon all civil rights. We can deport all foreigners and immigrants. We can impose martial law. We can become as authoritarian as Hitler and compile records against citizens and make them wear a color-coded "patriotism index" according to a central evaluation committee. We can arbitrarily round up people who do not toe the official line and intern them without trial. This is already starting. But no amount of paranoid measures will stop angry, suicidal terrorists who have nothing to lose. A committed terrorist can always make an end-run around even the most elaborate security measures.

There will be no relief from the threats until we abandon the Macchiavellian foreign manipulations, the baiting of angry legions, and our gross application of blatant double standards regarding terror. It pisses me off royally that there is even 'one' person in the world who hates us, let alone millions. But try selling that to the shareholders of the big 'defense' contractors and the rest of the 'military-industrial complex' that President Eisenhower so vehemently warned us about. Far too much money is at stake. I repeat... I love my country, and it totally gets my goat that there are so many in positions of power who compromise or endanger our personal and national security by employing ill-judged, hateful or duplicitous domestic and foreign policy. We do persist with these strange and misplaced priorities and allegiances in our apparent "war against terror".

[ 11-23-2001: Message edited by: Samantha Joanne Ollendale ]</p>
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post #89 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by BuonRotto:
<strong>If you're looking for who's right and who's wrong, you're looking at it all wrong. We're all wrong, no one is right, there' nopoint in justifying anyone's motivations on either side because this is obviously just part of an endless (until we kill ourselves) cycle we cannot stop, ignore, fix, redirect or affect in any meaningful way. It's bigger than any of us and we are all powerless, even Osama bin Laden, George W. Bush Abaraham and Mohammed.

PS: The fact that someone will respect someone else just because they believe in something, anything, is pretty sad. There are good ideas and bad ones, just having them isn't enough.

</strong><hr></blockquote>

Ahhh, thanks. You condensed this whole pile of rhetoric shit into one mouse turd...kind of how George Carlin can take the 10 Commandments and condense them into only two clear rules of life.

They are: "Be honest," and, "Don't kill anybody who doesn't need it" (or words to that effect).

The solutions aren't there now or ever will be in the near future. So lets all go about our lives and hope that our children's, children's, children's children have better sense than any of us.
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post #90 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Scott H.:
<strong>

Not when it comes to terrorist.</strong><hr></blockquote>

To them you're the terrorists.

Basically, you are the people you despise.

They are incapable of reasoning and so are you.
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post #91 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by BuonRotto:
<strong>If you're looking for who's right and who's wrong, you're looking at it all wrong. We're all wrong, no one is right, there' nopoint in justifying anyone's motivations on either side because this is obviously just part of an endless (until we kill ourselves) cycle we cannot stop, ignore, fix, redirect or affect in any meaningful way. It's bigger than any of us and we are all powerless, even Osama bin Laden, George W. Bush Abaraham and Mohammed.

PS: The fact that someone will respect someone else just because they believe in something, anything, is pretty sad. There are good ideas and bad ones, just having them isn't enough.

[ 11-23-2001: Message edited by: BuonRotto ]</strong><hr></blockquote>

PS: I know the American language sometimes differs from the English one, but I do believe the words "I respect them for their
willingness to die for what they believe in" are the same in both.
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post #92 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote] We can arbitrarily round up people who do not toe the official line and intern them without trial. <hr></blockquote> Four words....Prevention of Terrorism Act.

I entirely agree with your entire post. Like I said in the original post, I knew this wasn't going to be a popular opinion to have. Some people have a tendency of reading a post with their reply already in mind.

So far all I've seen are a bunch of people telling me that I respect people for killing, that I respect them for believing in something and, of course, the good old liberal crap.

I knew it wasn't going to be popular but at least criticise it for what it is. Not for what you think I'm trying to say or what you would like for me to say so you can throw your "you're with us or against us" bull at me.

The statement reads: "I respect terrorists for their willingness to die for their cause" What I mean by that, just to save you all the time of telling me what I mean by it, is that they have a goal that they don't mind dying for, not killing for.

Michael Collins, another "terrorist", once told Harry Boland: "I want peace so bad I'd die for it." Die, not kill.

I can handle the whole usual Europeans hate Americans because their jealous nonsense. I can handle the well since we are right, you must be wrong nonsense. Just don't tell me what I really mean. I feel it's fairly obvious from my posts.

Die for it. Not kill.
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post #93 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by fridgemagnet:
<strong>See I don't understand what you term freedom fighter anyway, If I take a fancy to cutting peoples throats and somebody tries to stop me doing this then surely they're restricting my freedom!? Am I thusly a hero? I doubt it!

The IRA are freedom fighters? f*ck off, as an irishman living in London I can tell you that that only a tiny minority of people actually in any way agree with the IRA or UDF or whoever, the rest of the people just want to live their lives happily and safely, England, Ireland, who gives a sh*t they're both going to want taxes.
</strong><hr></blockquote>

Ahem, once again, the majority of the Irish people want a peaceful solution to the situation in the north. I am one of them. The fact remains that Britain took this land and never gave it back. They had to give back India and pretty much every other country in their British Empire, so what's the problem with Ireland?

Their excuse for that is that otherwise there would be a civil war. As you put it so well, the majority of the people just want to live in peace so I think we can rule out civil war. Secterian groups will attack each other but they do that now as well so what's the difference?

Another excuse is that the majority of the people in Northern Ireland wants to be part of the United Kingdom. Fine by me, that means that 15 years from now they're going to have to give it up. We've waited 800 so we can do another 15.


[quote] These people are fighting because they enjoy it, Bin Laden 'enjoys' what he does, he's on a big ego trip. He wants to be big because inside he's small just like Adolf Hitler. does anyone really think that he cares about the plight of Muslims in Palestine? I can't believe that anyone out there can be that naive.<hr></blockquote>

Bin Laden is a person, well an individual anyway. What you are doing is that you stereotype the entire group of people based on what you think about Bin Laden. Do you not think that the majority of his soldiers would rather be home with their wives and children? There is a difference between enjoying killing and not being afraid to die for what you believe in.
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post #94 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by Mac The Fork:
<strong>

I'd suggest that some portion of the West makes a serious attempt to understand what breeds terrorism so we will be able preempt the development thereof. The creation of potential terrorist leaders is probably impossible to avoid, but I believe their minions (ulitmately the terrorists themselves) can be corrected.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Ah come on! What are you saying?? Talk to them and try to understand what we are fighting? Why the hell would we do that if we can just bomb them all back to the stoneage?? I mean, we're right you know! We never killed any of them and when we did they were all soldiers! Please! Stop!! You're trying to make sense aren't you?? Liberal! Always them Liberals! I betcha you don't even own loads of guns in case Canada invades us!


Well said Mac! Well said!
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post #95 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by macoracle:
<strong>
Ah come on! What are you saying?? Talk to them and try to understand what we are fighting? Why the hell would we do that if we can just bomb them all back to the stoneage??</strong><hr></blockquote>

This is the dichotomy you've presented and you want us to believe that you are not telling us we are wrong for responding to the WTC miltarily? Please don't patronize us crap like "I understand your reaction to the WTC attack. I described it as only human."

When you responded to NoanJ this way

[quote]<strong>You tool. They can't be both. They're either bloodthirsty murderers that don't want peace or they think a diplomatic solution should be found. Make up your mind.</strong><hr></blockquote>

didn't it even for a moment cross your mind that he was being ironic? And do you see the mirror room you've constructed where you call on us for greater understanding while you fail to understand yourself?

If you truly want a deeper and yet somewhat general understanding of the what motivates bin Laden read J. Bottum's article What Viloence is For in the December 2001 issue of <a href="http://www.firstthings.com" target="_blank">First Things</a>. It's not available online yet. It may be in a month. You'll have to look for it at your local bookstore although I don't know if it's available in Ireland or not.

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: roger_ramjet ]</p>
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post #96 of 150
What's the solution?
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post #97 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by roger_ramjet:
<strong>

didn't it even for a moment cross your mind that he was being ironic? And do you see the mirror room you've constructed where you call on us for greater understanding while you fail to understand yourself?

If you truly want a deeper and yet somewhat general understanding of the what motivates bin Laden read J. Bottum's article What Viloence is For in the December 2001 issue of <a href="http://www.firstthings.com" target="_blank">First Things</a>. It's not available online yet. It may be in a month. You'll have to look for it at your local bookstore although I don't know if it's available in Ireland or not.

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: roger_ramjet ]</strong><hr></blockquote>

I think the only person who can really tell you what motivates Bin Laden is Bin Laden himself to be honest. So did he interview him? I will definitely read it then.

My bombing dig, I admit it was a tasteless one, was more aimed at the people that see violence as the ultimate solution to this issue. It is not and you know it's not. You can't wipe out all your enemies. Vietnam showed it. In a way, Northern Ireland shows it as well. The British have ruled there for the last 800 years but they never got rid of "the terrorists".

You're right though. It was a childish reply on my side and I apologize if I offended anyone.

I'm not patronising you when I say I understand it as an initial reaction. I do think it's human. That doesn't mean I think it will solve anything in the end though and that is one of the points I have been trying to make here.

Now I'm more than ready to continue this discussion. Providing there is willingness from people to concede when they're wrong and not just ignore it. It sometimes helps a discussion if you can admit someone else is right about something. Like I am about Ireland.

The reason why I don't read to much in to articles written by journalists or so called experts is because I would like to think that I am quite an observant person and I would like to make up my own mind based on that. I also think a lot of the reporting, be it in articles or books, is not very objective.
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post #98 of 150
I understand that America has done naughty things in the past. I am perfectly willing to not be blind to the past.
What I don't understand, however, is what it has to do with anything.

If you are to use those actions as justifications then all of our past actions that were naughty and mean are justified as well all the way back to God and then I suppose it is all ultimately his fault with all the human actions ever undertaken left to be respectable because of faith or belief in an idea.

You are completely unable to say that the actions being taken by the U.S. "won't solve anything". It is far out of your reach to make such claims.

What is your suggestion?
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post #99 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by macoracle:
<strong>
My bombing dig, I admit it was a tasteless one, was more aimed at the people that see violence as the ultimate solution to this issue. It is not and you know it's not. You can't wipe out all your enemies. Vietnam showed it. In a way, Northern Ireland shows it as well. The British have ruled there for the last 800 years but they never got rid of "the terrorists".</strong><hr></blockquote>


Ehh, I should think that ramming a civilian tower with a passanger jet and killing thousands would be fairly representative of a people who view 'violence as the ultimate solution.'

How do you propose we respond? Or, as groverat asked, "What's the solution?"
post #100 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by macoracle:
<strong>
I think the only person who can really tell you what motivates Bin Laden is Bin Laden himself to be honest. So did he interview him?</strong><hr></blockquote>

Did you? Are the only people qualified to discuss bin Laden's motives those who've interviewed him?

[quote]<strong>My bombing dig, I admit it was a tasteless one, was more aimed at the people that see violence as the ultimate solution to this issue. It is not and you know it's not.</strong><hr></blockquote>

The ultimate solution? No. Part of the solution? Yes.

[quote]<strong>You can't wipe out all your enemies. Vietnam showed it.</strong><hr></blockquote>

WWII showed something different. Although I suppose even then we didn't wipe them all out - just enough of them to make the world safer.

[quote]<strong>The reason why I don't read to much in to articles written by journalists or so called experts is because I would like to think that I am quite an observant person and I would like to make up my own mind based on that. I also think a lot of the reporting, be it in articles or books, is not very objective.</strong><hr></blockquote>

J. Bottum is not a journalist, or at least he wasn't being one when he wrote the article I mentioned. It's an essay and it's a good bet that he brings a perspective you haven't considered.
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post #101 of 150
from Beer:
[quote]How do you propose we respond? Or, as groverat asked, "What's the solution?"<hr></blockquote>

Who does have a solution? I would love to hear a real one, but real ones get drowned out in the fashionable clamor for vengeance. Respond? Are we not already doing just that? Afghanstan is now a land of smoldering ruins, and bin Laden is as of yet, nowhere to be found and on the loose. He may not even be in Afghanistan! What about Saudi Arabia for heaven's sake? Not a single Afghani was responsible for hijacking and crashing those 4 aircraft, and 15 out of the 19 hijackers were Saudi citizens, and they trained for these attacks in Saudi Arabia (as well as in Afghanistan). Our response? We flatten Afghanistan, and brown-nose Saudi Arabia. Maybe the fact that Saudi Arabia is the worlds largest supplier of oil, and the fact that major international oil companies are based there, and we have oilmen as President and V.P. is a partial reason for our unbalanced response. Maybe also, the fact that Kazakhstan has perhaps the world's largest untapped oil reserves, (international oil companies have for years wanted to get a pipeline from there, through Afghanistan to the Indian Ocean) is one reason we are paying such huge attention to Afghanistan in order to set up a stable enough regime so that a pipeline can be built. The attacks on NYC and the Pentagon are a "convenient" (excuse the term) easy-sell justification.

Strange also, our sudden dislike for the Taliban; I have the impression that altho' they weren't on 'buddy-buddy' terms with the Bush Administration, just before Sept 11 we sent them $45 million to help them in their supposed "opium-eradication" program (ha!). And the program that suddenly sprung into action with the dropping of aid packages is more a feelgood PR exercise for favorable world impression than a genuine humanitarian effort. The packages contain material that Afghanis dont eat, they are printed in English, and are the same color as unexploded clusterbombs! Its pure phoney. In reality we dont give a flying fxck for the fate of Afghan villagers. After all, are not they harboring Al Qaeda personnel?

Incidentally, it is oil money that furnishes these terrorists...and here we are, driving our flag-adorned gas-guzzling SUVs, pushing our oil consumption to record highs, in some grotesque reversal of patriotism, providing yet more income to a clutch of middle-eastern right-wing rogue states whose citizens have few rights, they treat their women like animals, never heard of democracy and free elections, and pass hatred of America down to subsequent generations, partly because of our support and recognition of their oppressors.

Out of respect for the thousands dead, America could have used these horrendous attacks to really do some even greater good in the world, and to use our massive resources to help eliminate the causes of terrorism. No such luck; our sole concern is with dealing with the symptoms. We are already fouling up a fantastic opportunity to really make the world a safer place for us, and all peoples. I can almost see someone saying "peace isnt profitable enough; if we dont have any enemies, then by God we better make some".

Sounds cynical yes, but probably more realistic than being a pollyanna....
Why of course the people don't want war ... But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a...
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post #102 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by Samantha Joanne Ollendale:
<strong>from Beer:

Who does have a solution? I would love to hear a real one, but real ones get drowned out in the fashionable clamor for vengeance. Respond? Are we not already doing just that? Afghanstan is now a land of smoldering ruins, and bin Laden is as of yet, nowhere to be found and on the loose. He may not even be in Afghanistan!</strong><hr></blockquote>

Do you even care whether of not you get the story right? I saw the footage from Kabul. There were quite a few buildings still standing. Fact is Afghanistan doesn't have a lot of high value targets. The only way our bombs would have had any effect at all was to bomb directly Taliban positions.

[quote]<strong>Strange also, our sudden dislike for the Taliban; I have the impression that altho' they weren't on 'buddy-buddy' terms with the Bush Administration, just before Sept 11 we sent them $45 million to help them in their supposed "opium-eradication" program (ha!).
</strong><hr></blockquote>

No we didn't. We sent aid via the UN. We didn't give any money to the Taliban. We were quite careful about that. Nothing sudden about our dislike for the Taliban.
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post #103 of 150
<a href="http://www.spinsanity.org/columns/20011008.html" target="_blank">More</a> on that "U.S. aid to the Taliban lie" and where it came from.

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: roger_ramjet ]</p>
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post #104 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by macoracle:
<strong>

You tool. They can't be both. They're either bloodthirsty murderers that don't want peace or they think a diplomatic solution should be found. Make up your mind. </strong><hr></blockquote>

Did you even read the article??? They are trying to change the subject to save their worthless backsides. They could give a rats @$$ about diplomacy. But thei are appealing to the apologists such as a few posting on this forum to stop the US from doling out their judgement.

From the Article, first paragraph even:

[quote]<strong>"A Taliban spokesman said the world should move on and forget about the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States, focusing instead on U.S. actions in Afghanistan."</strong><hr></blockquote>

and then It goes on to say:

[quote]<strong>He said the deadly hijackings were carried out by people in the United States not the Taliban and were "the problem of (President) Bush and (British Prime Minister) Tony Blair."

"This is not our problem," Agha added"</strong><hr></blockquote>

I should have known that my post would fly right over your head. How can anyone be so blind as to not see that there is nothing here to be respected? They are terrorists, and now they are scared for their lives. And we are coming for them.
NoahJ
"It is unwise to be too sure of one's own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err." - Mahatma Gandhi
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NoahJ
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post #105 of 150
And as to the effectiveness of the bombing, this from Daniel Pipes.

<a href="http://www.nypost.com/postopinion/opedcolumnists/34628.htm" target="_blank">VICTORY SHIFTS
THE MUSLIM WORLD</a>

By DANIEL PIPES

[quote]November 19, 2001 -- EARLY on Nov. 9, the Taliban regime ruled almost 95 percent of Afghanistan. Ten days later, it controlled just 15 percent of the country. Key to this quick disintegration was the fact that, awed by American air power, many Taliban soldiers switched sides to the U.S.-backed Northern Alliance.
According to one analyst, "Defections, even in mid-battle, are proving key to the rapid collapse across Afghanistan of the formerly ruling Taliban militia."

This development fits into a larger pattern; thanks to American muscle, Afghans now look at militant Islam as a losing proposition. Nor are they alone; Muslims around the world sense the same shift.

If militant Islam achieved its greatest victory ever on Sept. 11, by Nov. 9 (when the Taliban lost their first major city) the demise of this murderous movement may have begun.

"Pakistani holy warriors are deserting Taliban ranks and streaming home in large numbers," reported The Associated Press on Friday. In the streets of Peshawar, we learn, "portraits of Osama bin Laden go unsold. Here where it counts, just across the Khyber Pass from the heartland of Afghanistan, the Taliban mystique is waning."

Just a few weeks ago, large crowds of militant Islamic men filled Peshawar's narrow streets, especially on Fridays, listening to vitriolic attacks on the United States and Israel, burning effigies of President Bush, and perhaps clashing with the riot police. This last Friday, however, things went very differently in Peshawar.

Much smaller and quieter crowds heard more sober speeches. No effigy was set on fire and one observer described the few policemen as looking like "a bunch of old friends on an afternoon stroll."

The Arabic-speaking countries show a similar trend. Martin Indyk, former U.S. ambassador to Israel, notes that in the first week after the U.S. airstrikes began on Oct. 7, nine anti-American demonstrations took place. The second week saw three of them, the third week one, the fourth week, two. "Then - nothing," observes Indyk. "The Arab street is quiet."

And so too in the further reaches of the Muslim world - Indonesia, India, Nigeria - where the supercharged protests of September are distant memories.

American military success has also encouraged the authorities to crack down. In China, the government prohibited the selling of badges celebrating Osama bin Laden ("I am bin Laden. Who should I fear?") only after the U.S. victories began.

Similarly, the effective ruler of Saudi Arabia admonished religious leaders to be careful and responsible in their statements ("weigh each word before saying it") after he saw that Washington meant business. Likewise, the Egyptian government has moved more aggressively against its militant Islamic elements.

This change in mood results from the change in American behavior.

For two decades - since Ayatollah Khomeini reached power in Iran in 1979 spouting "Death to America" - U.S. embassies, planes, ships, and barracks have been assaulted, leading to hundreds of American deaths. In the face of this, Washington hardly responded.

And, as Muslims watched militant Islam inflict one defeat after another on the far more powerful United States, they increasingly concluded that America, for all its resources, was tired and soft. They watched with awe as the audacity of militant Islam increased, culminating with Osama bin Laden's declaration of jihad against the entire Western world and the Taliban leader calling for nothing less than the "extinction of America."

The Sept. 11 attacks were expected to take a major step toward extinguishing America by demoralizing the population and leading to civil unrest, perhaps starting a sequence of events that would lead to the U.S. government's collapse.

Instead, the more than 4,000 deaths served as a rousing call to arms. Just two months later, the deployment of U.S. might has reduced the prospects of militant Islam.

The pattern is clear: So long as Americans submitted passively to murderous attacks by militant Islam, this movement gained support among Muslims. When Americans finally fought militant Islam, its appeal quickly diminished.

Victory on the battlefield, in other words, has not only the obvious advantage of protecting the United States but also the important side-effect of lancing the anti-American boil that spawned those attacks in the first place.

The implication is clear: There is no substitute for victory. The U.S. government must continue the war on terror by weakening militant Islam everywhere it exists, from Afghanistan to Atlanta.<hr></blockquote>
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post #106 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by roger_ramjet:
<strong>This development fits into a larger pattern; thanks to American muscle, Afghans now look at militant Islam as a losing proposition. Nor are they alone; Muslims around the world sense the same shift.</strong><hr></blockquote>Interesting. Hopefully 9/11/01 will do the same for militant Islamic extremism as 4/19/95 did for militant US extremism - make it lose credibility.

Remember how all the hostages were released after the Gulf War, and then there was a series of Israeli-Palestinian accords?

People said that because of the Gulf War, Arabs would hate the US, but it actually ushered in a more positive period, at least for a while.

You could also see the shift in Iran, right smack in between Afghanistan and Iraq, two countries the US has gone to large-scale war with in the past 10 years. And yet there is increasing pro-Western sentiment among the Iranian people.
post #107 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by BRussell:
<strong>
You could also see the shift in Iran, right smack in between Afghanistan and Iraq, two countries the US has gone to large-scale war with in the past 10 years. And yet there is increasing pro-Western sentiment among the Iranian people.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Yep, part of that is because they don't like the Taliban too. In fact they've been supporting the Northern Alliance for a while now.

Here's something about "root causes" from last week's NY Times.

November 17, 2001

CONNECTIONS

<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/17/arts/17CONN.html" target="_blank">Exploring the Flaws in the
Notion of the 'Root
Causes' of Terror</a>

By EDWARD ROTHSTEIN


[quote]Since Sept. 11, few phrases have become as familiar as "root causes." Forthright condemnations of the attacks have often been accompanied by assertions that, ultimately, the "root causes" of terror must also be addressed. And the implication is that if those causes are not eliminated, terrorism can be expected to continue.

It is remarkable how much agreement there is on the nature of these root causes. Many American intellectuals have cited American policy toward Israel, the poverty of Arab lands and inequalities and inequities reinforced by Western actions. The Vatican Synod in October, after condemning the "horror of terrorism," called for the elimination of the root causes of poverty and inequality. And similar declarations were made by many nations at the United Nations this week.

But it is worth thinking about just what premises about terrorism and fundamentalism lie behind these arguments.

First of all, these judgments accept a view of terror that has been held by many terrorist groups throughout modern history. The theory is that terrorism is an extreme reaction to grievous and long-festering injustices that have not been redressed by other means. Such claims were made by European anarchists at the beginning of the 20th century, by the radical Baader-Meinhoff gang in the 1970's and, of course, by Islamic terrorist groups ranging from Hezbollah to Al Qaeda. This might be called the "injustice theory" of terrorism and it is now widely held.

But at the very least this theory is inconsistently applied. Timothy McVeigh and his collaborators, for example, asserted that their ideas of rights and liberty were being violated and that the only recourse was terror: the Oklahoma City bombing. Yet, no one suggested that his act had its "root causes" in an injustice that needed to be rectified to prevent further terrorism. The injustice theory is apparently invoked only when one sympathizes with its conclusions.

The current invocations of injustice theory are also seriously flawed. Consider just one supposed root cause of Islamic terrorism: poverty. The implication is that to help stop terror, poverty must be ameliorated. There are, of course, very good reasons to eliminate poverty. Yet while some poverty-stricken people may engage in terror, there may be no essential relationship. Poverty can easily exist without terror (think of the American Depression). And terror can easily thrive without poverty.

The European fundamentalist wars between Protestants and Catholics, which involved substantial terror, crossed all economic boundaries. The left-wing terrorists of the 1970's and 80's were solidly middle class. The leaders and many of the main operatives in contemporary Islamic terrorist groups are, at the very least, middle class; some Al Qaeda operatives were highly educated; and bin Laden, of course, is a multimillionaire.

Moreover, the injustice theory, with its list of root causes, leaves no room for religious passion, irrational ambitions or cultural and tribal schisms. So it is unable to take into account the role played by fundamentalism. For fundamentalism, as the term is now used, involves a set of beliefs that lie beyond particular resentments. Fundamentalism can even be associated with a self-sacrificial renunciation of material pleasures; even suicide is sanctioned if it will further the fundamentalist goal. Under fundamentalism, in both its religious and political forms, every aspect of life is governed by a single set of ideas. All of history, all of natural law and all actions of the divinity, are seen as leading up to the present moment, granting incomparable power and authority to the fundamentalist. Those laws also demand that they be accepted universally and that great battles must be waged on their behalf.

The fundamentalist does not believe these ideas have any limits or boundaries. Goals are not restricted to a particular place or a particular time. The place is every place; the time is eternity. That is why fundamentalism is often expansionist; it must extend its reach as part of the great battle. In this context, one man's terrorist, as the maxim goes, is far from being just another man's freedom fighter. The goals of fundamentalist terror are not to eliminate injustice but to eliminate opposition.

This is precisely the sort of mental universe that the philosopher Hannah Arendt associated with what she called "totalitarian terror." Writing more than a half-century ago, she was primarily thinking of Nazi Germany and Stalin's Soviet Union, but the ideas have far greater resonance.

Like fundamentalist terror, totalitarian terror leaves no aspect of life exempt from the battle being waged. The state is felt to be the apotheosis of political and natural law, and it strives to extend that law over all of humanity. Reality, Arendt suggested, never modifies totalitarian ideas; events do not prove those ideas wrong or diminish belief. Instead, totalitarianism modifies perceptions of reality to suit the ideas; the world is changed to fit with the vision of totalitarianism. Nothing is allowed to stand in the way of totalitarian ideas. Opposition is guilt, punishment is death.

If contemporary Islamic terror can be considered a variety of totalitarian terror, it becomes clearer just how limited the injustice theory and the question of "root causes" are. No doubt, injustices and policies can be argued over, but not as root causes of terror. Totalitarianism stands above such niceties. No injustices, separately or together, necessarily lead to totalitarianism and no mitigation of injustice, however defined, will eliminate its unwavering beliefs, absolutist control and unbounded ambitions. Claims of "root causes" are distractions from the real work at hand.<hr></blockquote>

[ 11-24-2001: Message edited by: roger_ramjet ]</p>
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post #108 of 150
replying to some of BRussel's comments:

If there is anything we can be hopeful of, it's that we as Americans and many many other nationalities nowadays do not hold our grudges like way back when. While Serbia/Bosnian tensions can be traced back 800 years, this is becoming more of an exception to the rule, where it once seemd to be (historically) the de facto standard temperament.

I consider American feelings towards these things and while it may seem fickle in the short term (like how support for this battle was waning before some recent breakthroughs), in the long term, we seem to ready to make friends quite readily: the British from the old revoutionary/1812 days, the Russians/Soviets from the Cold War, we welcome Iran to be our friends, etc.

Obviously, we've been fair-weather friends to some when we thought they didn't need us or want us (Pakistan, Afganistan), conversely, we've stuck around when some didn't want us around (Saudi Arabia, Somalia). We've tried to bring self-determination to people but in the wrong way (Vietnam), we've supported those who we thought would bring freedom to others only to mistakenly bring those monsters to power (Phillipines). We've done plenty of things the wrong way. I think generally we try to do the right thing.

I forgot where I was going with this...
post #109 of 150
[quote]on that "U.S. aid to the Taliban lie" and where it came from.<hr></blockquote>

I recall hearing this from Bill O'Reilly, the conservative commentator, talking on the conservative Fox News Channel, which is owned by the conservative media tycoon Rupert Murdoch. Therefore it must be true.
<img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" />
Why of course the people don't want war ... But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a...
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Why of course the people don't want war ... But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a...
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post #110 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by BuonRotto:
[QB in the long term, we seem to ready to make friends quite readily: the British from the old revoutionary/1812 days, the Russians/Soviets from the Cold War, we welcome Iran to be our friends, etc.[/QB]<hr></blockquote>

In stead of the etcetera you might have considered a "provided they keep doing as we tell them"

The English have been the U.S lapdog for decades now, part of the reason why your past governments never condemned the atrocities commited by the English army in the north.

The Russians only became your friends after they embraced capitalism, which actually didn't make them much richer than before and created the ruthless Russian Mafia.

Iran is now your friend because you need them and were scared shedless that they would get involved along with some other surrounding states and you'd have a second Korea on your hands.

Friends...please...
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post #111 of 150
I seriously doubt if we were "afraid" of Iran, Iraq or any other country becoming "involved". The idea is that there is an aftermath to any military involvement and the fewer involved parties the better. The US doesn't want to involve itself in a never ending US against Islam war. This is not about that. It is about destroying the first of many terrorist organizations and that specific government overtly supporting that organization. To distabalize the entire region would be rather stupid - therefore we looked for and found other countries that believe that terrorisim must be delt with, even within their own borders. That we have made mis-steps in foriegn policy in the past because of a long cold war makes no difference right this minute or in the future. The decisions to involve and respect other countries efforts to end terrorism and our dealings with them with a better understanding of their needs and wants is important. The end of terrorisim is important for the entire world. How we follow up on it is just as important because it can preclude giving reasons (or excuses) for further terrorism.

And do I note a slight attitude that Communisim lost the cold war and that Russia is now experimenting with dreaded capitalisim - get over it.

And England is far from being the US's lap dog. (Oh these cold war sayings.) We have many disagreements with England and we compromise with them as much as they compromise with us. But you see it is not just England supporting the US in europe. It is the entire of NATO.

As far as the original thread goes - I respect the Palastinian that picks up a rock to throw at an armed Israel soldier for his belief. I disrespect the Palastinian that raps himself up in dynamite and blows up a disco full of unarmed civilians. I respect the Palastinian that picks up arms to defend his beliefs and fellow Palastinians against armed soldiers - he is a freedom fighter. I disrespect the Palastinian that shoots up a school bus and he should be caught and punished - preferably by Palistinians. I respect an unarmed student standing in front of tanks in Tennamin Square in China. I respect anyone, no matter the belief, that partakes in non-violent protest - no matter the consequences to themselves. I disrespect any one that targets civilians of any country with violence - no matter how right their cause. I respect any freedom fighter that joins an armed rebellion against a military force who do not target civilians for violance. There is a difference between a freedom fighter and a terrorist. Who is the target and how do they conduct their campaign for their cause. I might not agree with their cause and I might even take up arms or support the opposition, but as long as civilians are not the target, I will respect him even if he is my enemy.

[ 11-25-2001: Message edited by: ac2c ]</p>
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post #112 of 150
Thread Starter 
So what would you call <a href="http://larkspirit.com/bloodysunday/" target="_blank">these?</a>

Terrorists or soldiers?
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post #113 of 150
Well, this whole terrorist thing obviously makes you happy in some perverse way. You see things as having a political motive only. Yes, it's true, none of us (including you) is innocent. So I guess it's all a wash, right? They're doing what they believe in, so it must be a good thing for the balance of the universe. Have a happy life thinking that to yourself.

[ 11-25-2001: Message edited by: BuonRotto ]</p>
post #114 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by Samantha Joanne Ollendale:<strong>I recall hearing this from Bill O'Reilly, the conservative commentator, talking on the conservative Fox News Channel, which is owned by the conservative media tycoon Rupert Murdoch. Therefore it must be true.
<img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" /> </strong><hr></blockquote>

Was it Cyndi Lauper who sang:
"I see your true colors shining through,
I see your true colors..etc.."?

Don't be afraid to let them show.

[quote]<strong>In stead of the etcetera you might have considered a "provided they keep doing as we tell them"</strong><hr></blockquote>

What nation on earth has a different, more noble position? Would Ireland still have nothing but love for England if English schools began teaching anti-Irish propaganda?

Think before you speak.

[quote]<strong>The English have been the U.S lapdog for decades now, part of the reason why your past governments never condemned the atrocities commited by the English army in the north.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Why does our "condemnation" matter to you?

[quote]<strong>The Russians only became your friends after they embraced capitalism, which actually didn't make them much richer than before and created the ruthless Russian Mafia.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Yeah, once they dropped the communist regimes that murdered tens of millions of their own for dissent. I can't imagine why we wouldn't want to snuggle up to that.

[quote]<strong>Iran is now your friend because you need them and were scared shedless that they would get involved along with some other surrounding states and you'd have a second Korea on your hands.</strong><hr></blockquote>

Iran is our friend? Someone should go tell them that, because they still have plenty of public hate for us.

You have very little knowledge of the region.

[quote]<strong>So what would you call these?
Terrorists or soldiers?</strong><hr></blockquote>

I hate to answer your question with a question, but:

What does Bloody Sunday have to do with the U.S. conflict with Afghanistan? What was the U.S. supposed to do about that? Arrest British soldiers?
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post #115 of 150
[quote]Was it Cyndi Lauper who sang: "I see your true colors shining through, I see your true colors..etc.."? Don't be afraid to let them show.<hr></blockquote>

Groverat, I thought that my sarcasm was amply sufficient... ok, next time....
Why of course the people don't want war ... But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a...
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Why of course the people don't want war ... But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a...
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post #116 of 150
I got your point exactly, perhaps you missed mine.
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post #117 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by macoracle:
<strong>

To them you're the terrorists.

Basically, you are the people you despise.

They are incapable of reasoning and so are you.</strong><hr></blockquote>

They're wrong and I'm right. Why do you think I'm "incapable of reasoning"? Because I know right from wrong? Don't you? Murder is wrong and we should never respect the people who do it.

Listen to the hatred of the terrorist. They are religious bigots bent on spreading their their Islamic law to everyone. What's to understand? What's to reason with?

Should we "respect" the KKK and it's members? How about the Nazis? Should we reason with the KKK or the Nazis? I see very little difference between them and the terrorist.

People have this silly fantasy that the US caused this to happen. That if only we had done this and not that then no one would hate us. That mistakes were made and should have been avoided.

Fact is there no right or wrong moves for the US. No matter where we go or what we do we will be hated by some group for some reason. If we help one country the other will hate us. If we don't help then we will be hated. If we don't help enough we will be hated. If we ignore then then we're cruel if we help too much then we are "imperialist". No matter where we go and what we do we will be hated by someone for some reason.

And the reason is that the world is full of hateful people. These people need someone to hate. They need someone to blame for their lot in life. They make a life of spreading misery and hatred. They cant live in the world with the rest of us so they would rather kill us.

Its just that simple.
post #118 of 150
[quote]Originally posted by Samantha Joanne Ollendale:
<strong>

I recall hearing this from Bill O'Reilly, the conservative commentator, talking on the conservative Fox News Channel, which is owned by the conservative media tycoon Rupert Murdoch. Therefore it must be true.
<img src="graemlins/hmmm.gif" border="0" alt="[Hmmm]" /> </strong><hr></blockquote>

then later in responce to the above

[quote]Originally posted by groverat:
<strong>Was it Cyndi Lauper who sang:
"I see your true colors shining through,
I see your true colors..etc.."?

Don't be afraid to let them show. </strong><hr></blockquote>

Are you people ****ing stupid or what? Read the site SpinSanity. It's nonpartisan and only seeks to put some Sanity into the spin.

The idea that the US aided the Taliban is a lie. It was started by an LA Times writer. It's been repeated about 10,000 times over. Even by that fool Jesse Jackson on Oprah.

Read the link this time.

<a href="http://www.spinsanity.org/columns/20011008.html" target="_blank">http://www.spinsanity.org/columns/20011008.html</a>

[quote]Drawing on work by Bryan Carnell of Leftwatch, Brendan pointed out that the $43 million was not aid to the Taliban government. Instead, the money was a gift of wheat, food commodities, and food security programs distributed to the Afghan people by agencies of the United Nations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Secretary of State Colin Powell specifically stated, in fact, that the aid "bypasses the Taliban, who have done little to alleviate the suffering of the Afghan people, and indeed have done much to exacerbate it."<hr></blockquote>
post #119 of 150
Thread Starter 
[quote]They're wrong and I'm right. <hr></blockquote>

Exactly! And that's where you're wrong. There is no wrong and right, just the perspective that different groups of people put the same situation in.

As for Bloody Sunday and what it has to do with Afghanistan, I was informed that a terrorist is someone who kills innocent people. These soldiers killed innocent people. So they are terrorists? Well they are by your definition of one.

You're not willing to call them terrorists though because they were supposedly on the right side of the conflict.

I can not believe that I am being told by the same people that say it is right to attack the Taliban and Al Quada for what they did, that the IRA are terrorists for doing the exact same thing.

Just to give you a quick run of events:

Ireland - we're all running around happily playing hurling and killing each other.

Just across the Irish sea a king decides, hmmm we need a bigger empire, let's go over and start killing those Irish people.

Boom! We're part of Great Britain.

Here we are running around, a lot less happy and we decide:"Damn, we're not gonna take this" so we revolt. Then we go on and do that for another 750 some years. We get our butts kicked, then all of a sudden we've found it! Eureka! cries Michael Collins. We're not going to attack them en masse! We're gonna shoot them one by one in the streets!

It works too. We got them shedding their pants.

-Time out!- who attacked who first? Exactly! Just don't forget...I shall continue....

So here we are running around our country shooting everyone and everything working for or co operating with British rule. So across the sea people see that they're losing...so what do they do? Indeed! They call us murderers! We are the bad guys all of a sudden! Who attacked who first again?

So they say to us:"Let's talk, but send us Collins" So we send the man over, we negociate and negociate and negociate until we're told: "Listen, it's this or nothing. You can have your free state but we keep the north. If you don't agree that's fine. We'll just send some more black and tans over to burn your houses."

So Collins, a man who loves his country and wants peace so much he would die for it, signs it. We'll take that and then we'll see what we can do from there. And we're still doing it. We're talking again, and I'm all for it. But in the end we should have it all. Until then, I will not be happy.

If the U.S is right for attacking Al Quada, the IRA is right for attacking anything to do with the English military. They attacked us first.

So the least you could do is be a little consistent. If you say it's right to bomb because you were attacked that's fair enough, but then don't call someone else wrong for doing the exact same.

Not that that has anything to do with the original post though but some people don't mind not sticking to the point just so they don't have to admit they're wrong.
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post #120 of 150
YOU ARE AN IDIOT!
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