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All old Israel/Lebanon threads merged in here - Page 4  

post #121 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
Nation actually comes from Latin; meaning to be born in.

Latin words draw heavily on Greek roots.
post #122 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
Nation actually comes from Latin; meaning to be born in.

He didn't disagree with that in any way. He stated that Greek has an equivalent word, not that the word comes from Greek.
post #123 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
Do we need nations to accomplish that?

In the long run, perhaps not, but I am not even sure a single world government is that ideal -- localities are important in the defense of individual rights... My long range conception is a representative world government not unlike the us congress whose responsibilities are to do what current treaty meetings do, end conflicts, set up trade rules and enforcement, investigate and propose solutions for problems that exist on an international scale. Local governments from towns up will be decidedly more self-defined, and thus the concept of enemy of the state will just go away... Idealistic, I know...

Regardless, time and again the combination of national identity and ethnicity has been the basis of most if not all of human caused suffering. It is clearly counter-productive to maintain such connections, and indeed the most the stability and success of the US government lends support to the dissolution of this connection...
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
post #124 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Chucker
He didn't disagree with that in any way. He stated that Greek has an equivalent word, not that the word comes from Greek.

I never said he did. I just thought we needed the real difinition:

Wikipedia:

The English word "nation" is derived from the Latin term n?t?? (stem n?ti?n-), meaning:[1]
The action of being born; birth; or
The goddess personifying birth; or
A breed, stock, kind, species, race;or
A tribe, or (rhetorically, any) set of people (contemptuous); or
A nation or people.
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post #125 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by occam whisker
Ethnos being the Greek word for nation, completely escapes your progressive thinking.

So you are disagreeing with the preamble of the US Constitution, a document, I will remind you that is over 200 years old, and somehow my thinking is merely "progressive" and not established?

Words change definitions, and it is significant to note that.
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
post #126 of 882
Quote:
Regardless, time and again the combination of national identity and ethnicity has been the basis of most if not all of human caused suffering. It is clearly counter-productive to maintain such connections, and indeed the most the stability and success of the US government lends support to the dissolution of this connection...

Do you recognize ethnic groups right to self-determination?
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post #127 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
Do you recognize ethnic groups right to self-determination?

No. I recognize individual's right to self-determination. It is a key difference.
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
post #128 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by hardeeharhar
So you are disagreeing with the preamble of the US Constitution, a document, I will remind you that is over 200 years old, and somehow my thinking is merely \\"progressive\\" and not established?

Words change definitions, and it is significant to note that.


The US is very unique. It was born out of a confederation of States, each with its unique cultural makeup. It has worked, largely because the English language was common among the groups, and the desire within the different groups to escape British taxes and authority have bonded the groups together. If you remove these elements of language and a vision for a common shared future, the country will dissolve.
post #129 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by hardeeharhar
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein

I don't understand you.
Do you mean that some ethnic identities can have nation-states and others not, depending on whose identity it is?

No, I am saying its wrong, period.

National identity and ethnic identity should never be parsed together, ever.

That would be impossible since Nation and Ethnos are practically synonymous, but if I understand you adequately you consider nation-states to be wrong, as you also cited the US Constitution as what you consider the proper foundation of any political edifice. The US is not a nation-state, its identity is not national (not to mention ethnic) but political and statist, centred around the very document you cited and the various state institutions it regulates.
But the US (along with Canada) is not a common example, most countries are based on ethnic and cultural identities to which they are committed to affirm and preserve (such as France's commitment to the French language and culture).
The US shows an ethnic foundation is not necessary, although I disagree with a stand making the US example the only legitimate one, or else one could argue to apply the best founding political document to the entire world this avoididng wasteful duplication of separate anethnic sovereign countries.
This to say, while I disagree with your internationalist/anethnic stand, I find it a legitimate one.

[Edit: And a happy Fourth of July to you and the other Yanquistanis.]
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post #130 of 882
Immanuel, I respect your views as well, even though I feel that they are antiquated and problematic.

My hope is that the independence day of this statist republic reminds the world of the good that can come out of breaking down ethnic barriers...
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
"In a republic, voters may vote for the leaders they want, but they get the leaders they deserve."
post #131 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein

No. A nation-state is one whose sovereignity has an affinity to a national or ethnic identity (Ethnos being the Greek word for nation) and its culture.
Italy is the nation-state of the Italian nation even though some of its citizens are not ethnically Italians (like the German-speaking Tyrolians of Alto-Adige). Spain is the nation-state of the Spaniards even though it has many sizable minorities such as the Basques, the Catalans, the Gallegos. Iran is the nation-state of the Persians even though it has many minorities (Azeri, Balotchi, Arab, Kurd) and Persians are only slightly over 50% of the population.
Most countries in the world are nation-states and most of them have minorities. [Edit: Russia is the nation-state of the Russian nation even though it has innumerable minorities; the Russian language actually has two different words for Russian: one for ethnic Russian: Russki, and one for a non-ethnically Russian inhabitant of Russia: Rossiyani.]

This is semantics, really. A state is not a nation-state, if it isn't totally dominated by one nation and that one nation only. Israel is not a nation-state, as isn't the US, Germany or France. They have significant amounts of minorities holding their respective citizenship - that they can't be the state of only one of the ethnicities - even though it may be the largest in terms of sheer numbers.

These states are known as civic states, where citizenship, not nationality, is what guarantees your rights and responsibilities as a citizen.


Quote:
The term is misused by you to mean a country without significant ethnic minorities.

That's what a nation-state is.

Quote:
The name is not The Jewish State of Israel, it's The state of Israel (officially: Medinat Israel and Dawlat Israil, because this nation-state grants co-official status to the main minority language).

I don't know, I hear a lot of talk about The Jewish State of Israel, so much, in fact, that there's an internal debate amongs Israelis themselves on wether the state should adopt more neutral symbols or continue with Zionist symbols.

Quote:
The idea of Israel being a Jewish State has drawn much controversy because of the large number of Muslim and Christian Palestinians residing in Israel and in the West Bank and Gaza. For example, the Israeli National Anthem, the Hatikvah, refers to Jews by name as well as alluding to the concept of Zionism, and it contains no mention of Palestinian culture. This anthem therefore excludes non-Jews, including the Palestinians, from its narrative of national identity. Similar criticism has been made of the Israeli flag which resembles the Tallit (a Jewish prayer shawl) and features a Star of David, generally acknowledged as a symbol of Judaism. Both of these symbols derive from the Zionist struggle to create a nation-state, a struggle in which the Arabs figure as defeated opponents, not as active participants.

It has been suggested by supporters of Israeli multinationalism that the State of Israel adopt more inclusive and neutral symbolism. The concept of the Jewish state has been called racist and ethnocentric by critics, both internationally and inside Israel signified by the UN General Assembly Resolution 3379 linking Zionism to racism (later revoked by UN General Assembly Resolution 4686) but brought up again by the new Durban Declaration. Some critics assert that the idea of an ethnic state is itself racist and the ethnicity in question (or its history) does not matter.

Source


Quote:
So most people in this world are stupid according to you, fine.

You are not most people. Most people did not come into this thread to talk about nation-states. You did. So speak only for yourself.

Quote:
Perhaps they know a thing or two you don't, like the poor track record of trusting one's collective welfare in some other collective

This is very vague. What does this mean? That there should be no states based on civic rights - only states based on nationality? The latter are those that actually commit most of the crimes of this world, or those aspiring to be one of those anyway, and the multicultural ones, where civic rights are the foundation of the state (like Switzerland) are those that tend to stay away from crimes and other deeds of that nature.

Quote:
not to mention knowing what a nation-state actually is

Touché.
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post #132 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
Do we need nations to accomplish that?

Yes. People need to identify with the government, their role in the policital and social life and share the burden of creating a common socio-economic policy within the state. People generally refer to those groups as "nations", because they identify with one another, be it culturally, linguistically, religiously, or whatever.

But there's no need to base a state on nationality or ethnicity. Different ethnic groups can live together and still be able to identify with the symbols, values and socio-economic policies of a state, provided that the state recognizes the rights of every individual and secures basic equality among the different groups.
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post #133 of 882
nm - mods please delete this - double post.
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post #134 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by hardeeharhar
Immanuel, I respect your views as well, even though I feel that they are antiquated and problematic.

Thank you.
Although what you may consdier antiquated I think is contemporary, and what's problematic is that as long as there are many nation-states around one's collective welfare is better served by having one too.
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post #135 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Gene Clean
This is semantics, really. A state is not a nation-state, if it isn't totally dominated by one nation and that one nation only.

This may be your defintion of nation-state,not the commonly accepted one.

Quote:
Israel is not a nation-state, as isn't the US, Germany or France.

Israel, France, Germany, Italy, Iran, Spain, are nation-states, the US and Canada are not.

Quote:
I don't know, I hear a lot of talk about The Jewish State of Israel,

You were right at I don't know.

Quote:
so much, in fact, that there's an internal debate amongs Israelis themselves on wether the state should adopt more neutral symbols or continue with Zionist symbols.

No there is no such debate, there is a wide consensus in the population about Israel being the nation-state of the Jewish people, with civil rights to minority citizens and recognition of national minorities (such as the official status of the Arabic language).

Quote:
You are not most people. Most people did not come into this thread to talk about nation-states. You did. So speak only for yourself.

You may not know how the term nation-state is commonly understood, I do.
And since you seem to like Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nation-state


Quote:
This is very vague. What does this mean? That there should be no states based on civic rights - only states based on nationality?

No, it means that states can be based on a certain national or ethnic identity, and that actually a large naumber of countries are just that. They then may decide to function as liberal democracies and have civil rights for all citizens including those of ethnic minorities, as is the case of Spain, Italy, or Israel.


Quote:
The latter are those that actually commit most of the crimes of this world, or those aspiring to be one of those anyway,

Those committing most crimes are those which are not liberal democracies

Quote:
and the multicultural ones, where civic rights are the foundation of the state (like Switzerland)

The foundation of Switzerland is that the cantons of Schwyz, Uri and Unterwalden didn't want to be part of the Holy Roman Empire.

Quote:
are those that tend to stay away from crimes and other deeds of that nature.

There are those who stay away from trouble by way of neutrality (while the horrible crime is being committed before their eyes) and then there are those who in the depth of trouble wrestle with the temptation of crime while in conflict, the latters are more common among non-neutral liberal democracies, all their flaws notwithstanding.
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post #136 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Gene Clean
Yes. People need to identify with the government, their role in the policital and social life and share the burden of creating a common socio-economic policy within the state. People generally refer to those groups as "nations", because they identify with one another, be it culturally, linguistically, religiously, or whatever.

But there's no need to base a state on nationality or ethnicity. Different ethnic groups can live together and still be able to identify with the symbols, values and socio-economic policies of a state, provided that the state recognizes the rights of every individual and secures basic equality among the different groups.

Funny, in most of history, in most of the world, things have worked just fine without national-states. People traditionally have governed themselves locally, and national governments have been either, absent, weak, or in many cases a burden for the people.

Strong national governements have, in history, led to progress and wealth, yes, but also to war and suffering.

Only recently, with humanism, have (some) nations taken the role you describe. And the larger part of these nations have been based on ethnicity.
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post #137 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Those committing most crimes are those which are not liberal democracies

This is debatable.
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post #138 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
This is debatable.

Not even. Demonstrably false.

Of course one must define 'crime' and I suppose by many people's definitions that would relabel the criminal actions of Israel and the US (say) so that would probably skew the results somewhat in favour of the contention.
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post #139 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
This may be your defintion of nation-state,not the commonly accepted one.

Show me one source that disputes my definition of a classic nation-state (that there is one dominant ethnic group, that the state is for that group only and others are there by virtue of history or economics, that the state is totally defined by that group and that group only, and that the state exists to cater to that group and to that group only).



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You were right at I don't know.

So you're ignoring the content of the link I posted? Classic.


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No there is no such debate, there is a wide consensus in the population about Israel being the nation-state of the Jewish people, with civil rights to minority citizens and recognition of national minorities (such as the official status of the Arabic language).

No there isn't. Otherwise there wouldn't have been a serious on-going debate about it. It's okay to have debates by the way, it doesn't make Israel, or Jews less of a nation, or less deserving of a state where they are equal amongst others.


Quote:
You may not know how the term nation-state is commonly understood, I do.
And since you seem to like Wikipedia
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nation-state

From your very own link:

Quote:
A classic nation-state, by definition, is inhabited by one ethnic group, who speak one language, have one culture, and share one religion. The population, in other words, is homogeneous. This group is referred to as the nation or the people. They all live inside the border of the nation-state. No other ethnic or cultural group lives there. It is often said that island states are the best place to find something like this, and Iceland is often cited as the best example of a nation-state. Although the inhabitants are ethnically related to other Scandinavian groups, the national culture and language are found only in Iceland. There are no cross-border minorities, the nearest land is too far away. Japan, see also Japanese Demographics and Ethnic issues in Japan, is traditionally seen as a good example, although it includes minorities of ethnically distinct Ryukyuans in the south, Koreans, Chinese, Filipinos and Brazilians, and in the north, the indigenous Ainu minority of Hokkaido. The Republic of Ireland was until recently inhabited almost entirely by ethnic Irish, but the national territory is not considered complete by nationalists because it does not include Northern Ireland.

Very few others approach the ideal model of the nation-state: the border does not correspond to the distribution of the national group. Sometimes that is impossible, because population is ethnically mixed, down to the level of individual streets or buildings. Where part of the national group lives in a neighbouring nation-state, it is usually called a national minority. In some cases states have reciprocal national minorities, for instance the Slovaks in Hungary and the Hungarian in Slovakia.

National minorities should not be confused with a national diaspora, which is typically located far from the national border. Most modern diasporas result from economic migration. The existence of an Irish diaspora does not make the Republic of Ireland any less a nation-state, and does not affect Northern Ireland, since few emigrants go there anyway.

The possession of dependent territories does influence the status of nation-state. A state with large colonial possessions is obviously inhabited by many ethnic groups, and does not conform to the ideal of a single-culture state. However, in most cases, the colonies were not considered an integral part of the motherland anyway, and were separately administered. Some European nation-states have dependent territories in Europe. Denmark contains virtually all ethnic Danes and has relatively few foreign nationals within it. However, it exercises sovereignty over the Faroe Islands and Greenland. If these are considered separate nations, then Denmark is not a classic nation-state.


Quote:
No, it means that states can be based on a certain national or ethnic identity, and that actually a large naumber of countries are just that. They then may decide to function as liberal democracies and have civil rights for all citizens including those of ethnic minorities, as is the case of Spain, Italy, or Israel.

That's an oxymoron. You can't be a liberal-democracy and function as the nation-state of only one ethnic group when it's clear that there are significant amounts of people from other groups. That's why the ideal of a nation-state is a bogus one, formed in times of nationalist wars and rhetoric, as the best "protection" a nation can have.


Quote:
Those committing most crimes are those which are not liberal democracies

That's highly debatable.


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The foundation of Switzerland is that the cantons of Schwyz, Uri and Unterwalden didn't want to be part of the Holy Roman Empire.

I'm talking about socio-economic policies of the 20-21st century, not the first steps toward confederation.


Quote:
There are those who stay away from trouble by way of neutrality (while the horrible crime is being committed before their eyes) and then there are those who in the depth of trouble wrestle with the temptation of crime while in conflict, the latters are more common among non-neutral liberal democracies, all their flaws notwithstanding.

It works both ways though - I think - as the neutral ones stay away from crimes of any nature, including those committed to this day by the self-proclaimed liberal democracies. And the other liberal-democracies, the ones that take sides, often justify their taking sides (thus prolonging the conflict, if not influencing it) by various "policies" and "views" that they hold on an issue.
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post #140 of 882
Gene, You do se the destinction between "common accepted definiton" and the narrow, non-existing "ideal nation-state"?

Close to all Norwegians consider Norway a prime-example of a nation-state. We do however have a indigenous etnic minority in the north, some extra land in Antarctica, and a growing number of ethnic miniorties who, aproaching 3rd and 4th generation of immigrants, consider themselves Norwegian as well.
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post #141 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Gene Clean
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
This may be your defintion of nation-state,not the commonly accepted one.

Show me one source that disputes my definition of a classic nation-state (that there is one dominant ethnic group, that the state is for that group only and others are there by virtue of history or economics, that the state is totally defined by that group and that group only, and that the state exists to cater to that group and to that group only).

Since you seem to accept as source my link above:
A nation-state is a specific form of state (a political entity), which exists to provide a sovereign territory for a particular nation (a cultural entity), and which derives its legitimacy from that function.
This does not exclude the existence of ethnic minorities not the inclusion of ethnic-minority citizens with civil rights. And it does mention Italy and Germany as nation-states (under the heading Origins)

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Quote:
You were right at I don't know.

So you're ignoring the content of the link I posted? Classic.

You claimed the state's name was The Jewish State of Israel which it isn't.
As for there being no public debate about whether Israel should keep its current Jewish symbols or change them. I don't need your link to know about this issue, I'm an Israeli citizen, I speak, read and write Hebrew, I am well aware of the current state of public affairs there.


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No there isn't. Otherwise there wouldn't have been a serious on-going debate about it.

Which there isn't, while the current state of affairs is contested on some fringes it does not bring a serious debate.

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It's okay to have debates by the way, it doesn't make Israel, or Jews less of a nation, or less deserving of a state where they are equal amongst others.

I don't say it's not okay, only that there isn't one, theremight be one in the future, but there is none presently.

Quote:
From your very own link:

Emphasis yours.
Under the heading: Examples of nation-states
A classic nation-state, by definition, is inhabited by one ethnic group, who speak one language, have one culture, and share one religion. The population, in other words, is homogeneous. This group is referred to as the nation or the people. They all live inside the border of the nation-state. No other ethnic or cultural group lives there. It is often said that island states are the best place to find something like this, and Iceland is often cited as the best example of a nation-state.

This is to be expected with cooperative works such as Wikipedia, which can soemtimes have contradictions. This part is more like what the same article refers as the ideal nation-state than to what actually happens in real nation-states (France, Germany).

This ideal has influenced almost all existing sovereign states, and they cannot be understood without reference to that model. It also explains how they are different from their predecessor states. Thus, the term nation-state is also used, imprecisely, for a state that attempts to promote a single national identity, often beginning with a single national language (e.g., France, Germany, and Italy).
These countries all have ethnic minorities whose individuals are nevertheless granted full citizenship and even (as in the case of German-speakers in Alto-Adige,Italy), territorial and cultural autonomy.
So the term is definitely not limited to countries with little or no ethnic minorities.

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Quote:
No, it means that states can be based on a certain national or ethnic identity, and that actually a large naumber of countries are just that. They then may decide to function as liberal democracies and have civil rights for all citizens including those of ethnic minorities, as is the case of Spain, Italy, or Israel.

That's an oxymoron. You can't be a liberal-democracy and function as the nation-state of only one ethnic group when it's clear that there are significant amounts of people from other groups.

Yet nation-states such as those of Western Europe function as liberal democracies, promoting the ethnic identity of their majority while granting full civil rights to minority citizens, sometimes going as far as granting minorities a cultural, lingusitic, and territorial autonomy.


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That's why the ideal of a nation-state is a bogus one, formed in times of nationalist wars and rhetoric, as the best "protection" a nation can have.

The ideal of a full overlap between citzenship and nationality (in France the word nationalité is used interchangeably with citoyenneté) is unattainable, so nation-states accomodate reality without renouncing their commitment to particular national identity.

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Those committing most crimes are those which are not liberal democracies

That's highly debatable.

Most mass crimes committed by states are committed by the likes of the PRC, Sudan, or Rwanda, far less than by the likes of Denmark or Portugal.

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The foundation of Switzerland is that the cantons of Schwyz, Uri and Unterwalden didn't want to be part of the Holy Roman Empire.

I'm talking about socio-economic policies of the 20-21st century, not the first steps toward confederation.

You wrote about the foundation of the state and mentioned Switzerland, so that's in 1291.

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It works both ways though - I think - as the neutral ones stay away from crimes of any nature,

Not of the crime of silent complicity.

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including those committed to this day by the self-proclaimed liberal democracies.

Being imperfect entities,they sometimes commit crimes, although much less than the fashionable illiberal tyrannies (in my youth, many students liked Mao's paradise).

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And the other liberal-democracies, the ones that take sides, often justify their taking sides (thus prolonging the conflict, if not influencing it) by various "policies" and "views" that they hold on an issue.

They also often solve conflicts. The reason why there's no civil war in Bosnia today is because some liberal democracies intervened.

One cannot be free from wrongdoing or error, which is why one should choose one's battles prudently. Liberal democracies' track record might be less than stellar in that department, it still beats the competition's by far.
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post #142 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Those committing most crimes are those which are not liberal democracies

This is debatable.

It is.
Yet it is more debated than it is debatable.
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post #143 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Quote:
This is debatable.


It is.
Yet it is more debated than it is debatable.

You see Libral democracies engaged in war constantly. Just not much against each other.

Who are "those" others? do they have a common denominator?

One could easily be tempted do find other types of governments that engange less in "crimes". (Which needs to be defined ofcourse).
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post #144 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
Quote:
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Those committing most crimes are those which are not liberal democracies

Originally posted by New
This is debatable.

Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
It is.
Yet it is more debated than it is debatable.

Quote:
You see Libral democracies engaged in war constantly. Just not much against each other.

You see countries at war constantly, some of them are liberal democracies, many are not. And while liberal democracies can be known to regrettably indulge in excesses while at war, they tend to do it less than illiberal despotisms, which also indulge in it without having war around.

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Who are "those" others? do they have a common denominator?

In those which are not liberal democracies?
Not liberal demcoracies. As in all those genocides of the twentieth century, all committed by non-liberal non-democracies.

Quote:
One could easily be tempted do find other types of governments that engange less in "crimes". (Which needs to be defined ofcourse).

In every generation there are those following this temptation, finding some pet-authoritarianism they hold as better serving the people's cause or less criminal, or having more fabulous uniforms than the common contemporary liberal democracies.
For some it was Stalin's times USSR, some found Mao's China more alluring than decadent bourgeois-democracy, others preferred Franco's orderly realm to Western European welfare-states, while others yet found solace in Mahathir Muhammad's soft-yet-firm leadership-principle, offering more family-values for the buck than your garden variety liberal democracy (and Mssrs Munawar Anees or Anwar Ibrahim should just shut up).
And then you have those alarmed at the present descent into übertfaschistik hell of the hell-bent Anglo-Saxon so-called democracies while at the same time extolling the many virtues of the Islamic Republic of Iran, particularly under the current management: Ahmadinejad zindabad!
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post #145 of 882
A Black Flag

By Gideon Levy

A black flag hangs over the "rolling" operation in Gaza. The more the operation "rolls," the darker the flag becomes. The "summer rains" we are showering on Gaza are not only pointless, but are first and foremost blatantly illegitimate. It is not legitimate to cut off 750,000 people from electricity. It is not legitimate to call on 20,000 people to run from their homes and turn their towns into ghost towns. It is not legitimate to penetrate Syria's airspace. It is not legitimate to kidnap half a government and a quarter of a parliament.

A state that takes such steps is no longer distinguishable from a terror organization. The harsher the steps, the more monstrous and stupid they become, the more the moral underpinnings for them are removed and the stronger the impression that the Israeli government has lost its nerve. Now one must hope that the weekend lull, whether initiated by Egypt or the prime minister, and in any case to the dismay of Channel 2's Roni Daniel and the IDF, will lead to a radical change.

Everything must be done to win Gilad Shalit's release. What we are doing now in Gaza has nothing to do with freeing him. It is a widescale act of vengeance, the kind that the IDF and Shin Bet have wanted to conduct for some time, mostly motivated by the deep frustration that the army commanders feel about their impotence against the Qassams and the daring Palestinian guerilla raid. There's a huge gap between the army unleashing its frustration and a clever and legitimate operation to free the kidnapped soldier.

To prevent the army from running as amok as it would like, a strong and judicious political echelon is required. But facing off against the frustrated army is Ehud Olmert and Amir Peretz's tyro regime, weak and happless. Until the weekend lull, it appeared that each step proposed by the army and Shin Bet had been immediately approved for backing. That does not bode well, not only for the chances of freeing Shalit, but also for the future management of the government, which is being revealed to be as weak as the Hamas government.

The only wise and restrained voice heard so far was that of the soldier's father, Noam Shalit, of all people. That noble man called at what is clearly his most difficult hour, not for stridency and not for further damage done to the lives of soldiers and innocent Palestinians. Against the background of the IDF's unrestrained actions and the arrogant bragging of the latest macho spokesmen, Maj. Gen. Yoav Gallant of the Southern Command and Maj. Gen. (res.) Amos Gilad, Shalit's father's voice stood out like a voice crying in the wilderness.

Sending tens of thousands of miserable inhabitants running from their homes, dozens of kilometers from where his son is supposedly hidden, and cutting off the electricity to hundreds of thousands of others, is certainly not what he meant in his understated emotional pleas. It's a shame nobody is listening to him, of all people.

The legitimate basis for the IDF's operation was stripped away the moment it began. It's no accident that nobody mentions the day before the attack on the Kerem Shalom fort, when the IDF kidnapped two civilians, a doctor and his brother, from their home in Gaza. The difference between us and them? We kidnapped civilians and they captured a soldier, we are a state and they are a terror organization. How ridiculously pathetic Amos Gilad sounds when he says that the capture of Shalit was "illegitimate and illegal," unlike when the IDF grabs civilians from their homes. How can a senior official in the defense ministry claim that "the head of the snake" is in Damascus, when the IDF uses the exact same methods?

True, when the IDF and Shin Bet grab civilians from their homes - and they do so often - it is not to murder them later. But sometimes they are killed on the doorsteps of their homes, although it is not necessary, and sometimes they are grabbed to serve as "bargaining chips," like in Lebanon and now, with the Palestinian legislators. What an uproar there would be if the Palestinians had grabbed half the members of the Israeli government. How would we label them?

Collective punishment is illegitimate and it does not have a smidgeon of intelligence. Where will the inhabitants of Beit Hanun run? With typical hardheartedness the military reporters say they were not "expelled" but that it was "recommended" they leave, for the benefit, of course, of those running for their lives. And what will this inhumane step lead to? Support for the Israeli government? Their enlistment as informants and collaborators for the Shin Bet? Can the miserable farmers of Beit Hanun and Beit Lahia do anything about the Qassam rocket-launching cells? Will bombing an already destroyed airport do anything to free the soldier or was it just to decorate the headlines?

Did anyone think about what would have happened if Syrian planes had managed to down one of the Israeli planes that brazenly buzzed their president's palace? Would we have declared war on Syria? Another "legitimate war"? Will the blackout of Gaza bring down the Hamas government or cause the population to rally around it? And even if the Hamas government falls, as Washington wants, what will happen on the day after? These are questions for which nobody has any real answers. As usual here: Quiet, we're shooting. But this time we are not only shooting. We are bombing and shelling, darkening and destroying, imposing a siege and kidnapping like the worst of terrorists and nobody breaks the silence to ask, what the hell for, and according to what right?
'L'enfer, c'est les autres' - JPS
'L'enfer, c'est les autres' - JPS
post #146 of 882
double post - smth wrong with the database...
'L'enfer, c'est les autres' - JPS
'L'enfer, c'est les autres' - JPS
post #147 of 882
...blah blah blah...the only wise and restrained voice...blah blah blah...

Give him a box of tampons and send him on his way.
post #148 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by occam whisker
...blah blah blah...the only wise and restrained voice...blah blah blah...

Give him a box of tampons and send him on his way.


My! Aren't you all mature and everything!
Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
Without the need for difference or a need to always follow the herd breeds complacency, mediocrity, and a lack of imagination
post #149 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by jimmac
My! Aren't you all mature and everything!

Steve666
What is Faith? When your good deed pleases you and your evil deed grieves you, you are a believer. What is Sin? When a thing disturbs the peace of your heart, give it up - Prophet Muhammad
What is Faith? When your good deed pleases you and your evil deed grieves you, you are a believer. What is Sin? When a thing disturbs the peace of your heart, give it up - Prophet Muhammad
post #150 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
In every generation there are those following this temptation, finding some pet-authoritarianism they hold as better serving the people's cause or less criminal, or having more fabulous uniforms than the common contemporary liberal democracies.
For some it was Stalin's times USSR, some found Mao's China more alluring than decadent bourgeois-democracy, others preferred Franco's orderly realm to Western European welfare-states, while others yet found solace in Mahathir Muhammad's soft-yet-firm leadership-principle, offering more family-values for the buck than your garden variety liberal democracy (and Mssrs Munawar Anees or Anwar Ibrahim should just shut up).
And then you have those alarmed at the present descent into übertfaschistik hell of the hell-bent Anglo-Saxon so-called democracies while at the same time extolling the many virtues of the Islamic Republic of Iran, particularly under the current management: Ahmadinejad zindabad!

All I see is you glorifying liberal democracies, while at the same time mocking the very action of glorifying one system of belief... \
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- "Senator, you are a politician, first tell us a lie!"
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- "Senator, you are a politician, first tell us a lie!"
post #151 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
All I see is you glorifying liberal democracies,

Observing that liberal democracies are a not as bad a deal as the alternatives is not glorifying them.

Quote:
while at the same time mocking the very action of glorifying one system of belief...

Not one system of belief, certain systems of government.
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post #152 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Observing that liberal democracies are a not as bad a deal as the alternatives is not glorifying them.

You've just chuncked every other system of government into one group, making no distinctions. Claiming for instance that all alternatives are "authoritarian"

Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Not one system of belief, certain systems of government.

In my opinion, the difference between your "liberal democracies" is so great, that it's not at all logical to hold these together against "the rest".

The practise of democracy in Israel, Scandinavia, the US, India and Venezuela have just as many differences as things in common.

Basically, what I ask for is less generalization.
Bill Bradley to comedian Bill Cosby: "Bill, you are a comic, tell us a joke!"
- "Senator, you are a politician, first tell us a lie!"
Bill Bradley to comedian Bill Cosby: "Bill, you are a comic, tell us a joke!"
- "Senator, you are a politician, first tell us a lie!"
post #153 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
You've just chuncked every other system of government into one group, making no distinctions. Claiming for instance that all alternatives are "authoritarian"

Where did I say that?
There's also open-competition between governments a.k.a. total chaos as in southern Somalia, completely lacking in coherent political authority.

Quote:
In my opinion, the difference between your "liberal democracies" is so great, that it's not at all logical to hold these together against "the rest".

[]

Basically, what I ask for is less generalization.

There are differences in stability, median income, prevailing political culture, social fabric, etc. between different liberal demcoracies, yet they all allow change of administration following consultation of citizens, the free political debate, and sufficient civil rights, and you won't find among them anything like Babi-Yar, Halabja, or the Cultural Revolution. So in my opinion there is an essential difference between liberal demcoracies and the rest beyond their respective whaddyoucallit diversity; this is where I do generalise.
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post #154 of 882
So what are Constitutional Monarchies? Plus Somalia cannot be lumped into "the rest", the rest being authoritarion here. Somalia has no central government, hence no universal authority, and is recognized only de jure as such; with warlords controlling parts of the country.

It's more of a failed state, than anything else._
'L'enfer, c'est les autres' - JPS
'L'enfer, c'est les autres' - JPS
post #155 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Where did I say that?
There's also open-competition between governments a.k.a. total chaos as in southern Somalia, completely lacking in coherent political authority.

here, as I read it:

Quote:
In every generation there are those following this temptation, finding some pet-authoritarianism they hold as better serving the people's cause or less criminal, or having more fabulous uniforms than the common contemporary liberal democracies.

Quote:
There are differences in stability, median income, prevailing political culture, social fabric, etc. between different liberal demcoracies, yet they all allow change of administration following consultation of citizens, the free political debate, and sufficient civil rights, and you won't find among them anything like Babi-Yar, Halabja, or the Cultural Revolution. So in my opinion there is an essential difference between liberal demcoracies and the rest beyond their respective whaddyoucallit diversity; this is where I do generalise.

You could just as easy tribute that to economic factors. What I do find "liberal democracies" enganging themselves in is stuff like Hiroshima, the Vietnam War, Belgian Congo, CIA actions like the abductions in Italy or the Chilenian coup of 1973.

And currently; The grave breaches of international common law by Israel in Gaza.
Bill Bradley to comedian Bill Cosby: "Bill, you are a comic, tell us a joke!"
- "Senator, you are a politician, first tell us a lie!"
Bill Bradley to comedian Bill Cosby: "Bill, you are a comic, tell us a joke!"
- "Senator, you are a politician, first tell us a lie!"
post #156 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
here, as I read it:
Quote:
In every generation there are those following this temptation, finding some pet-authoritarianism they hold as better serving the people's cause or less criminal, or having more fabulous uniforms than the common contemporary liberal democracies.

That's not claiming that all alternatives are "authoritarian". That is showing that some are always tempted finding some alluring traits in some other form of regime, often authoritarian, but not always (there are a few lunatics praising Somalian warlordship as more freedom from coercive central government too).


Quote:
You could just as easy tribute that to economic factors. What I do find "liberal democracies" enganging themselves in is stuff like Hiroshima, the Vietnam War, Belgian Congo, CIA actions like the abductions in Italy or the Chilenian coup of 1973.

And currently; The grave breaches of international common law by Israel in Gaza.

When involved in conflict, even liberal democracies fight sometimes, and sometimes it gets nasty. And while I often disagree with some Israeli policies, I couldn't care less about international law (which is different from common law, and there's no such thing as international common law), wasn't there for us (or for the Cambodians, or for the Rwandans), so screw it.
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post #157 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
That's not claiming that all alternatives are "authoritarian". That is showing that some are always tempted finding some alluring traits in some other form of regime, often authoritarian, but not always (there are a few lunatics praising Somalian warlordship as more freedom from coercive central government too).

Ok, nice of you to clear that up.

Quote:
When involved in conflict, even liberal democracies fight sometimes, and sometimes it gets nasty.

But to be involved and to start are different things. I made clear references to direct actions by your "liberal democracies".

Quote:
And while I often disagree with some Israeli policies, I couldn't care less about international law (which is different from common law, and there's no such thing as international common law), wasn't there for us (or for the Cambodians, or for the Rwandans), so screw it.

Sorry, That was meant to be Public International Law. And it is, in its present state, there much because of the holocaust, (if I catch your reference right), so if you as a jew don't care about that, I think thats terribly sad.

Personally I think International Law is one of the best things to have come from "liberal democratic" ideas. If only some of these states would work to further them, not only in their own interest, then we might get somewhere.

To say that International Law is not there for Rwanda is only half the truth, since The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is currently ongoing. As you know Laws don't prevent crime directly.

International Law is certainly not there for the people of Gaza. Yet.
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post #158 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
But to be involved and to start are different things. I made clear references to direct actions by your "liberal democracies".

Most of which happened within conflicts in which they were involved. Liberal demcoracies are not adherents to Ghandian non-violence not should they, some of their actions are mistaken and reprehensible, they are made by humans not angels.

Quote:
Sorry, That was meant to be Public International Law. And it is, in its present state, there much because of the holocaust, (if I catch your reference right), so if you as a jew don't care about that, I think thats terribly sad.

I stopped caring when I saw the the Khmer-Rouges being given free rein by the very same international law (not that I expected much of it before but even my low expectations were disappointed).

Quote:
Personally I think International Law is one of the best things to have come from "liberal democratic" ideas. If only some of these states would work to further them, not only in their own interest, then we might get somewhere.

To have an actually functioning international law you'd need to have a supra-national sovereign power with all-powerful international enforcement capabilities, and hope it abides by a modicum of liberal demcoratic principles. Not happening nor going to be.

Sovereign countries respect international law when it is concurrent with the interest of more powerful countries or when it otherwise suits them.

Quote:
To say that International Law is not there for Rwanda is only half the truth, since The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is currently ongoing.

Too little too late.
Quote:
As you know Laws don't prevent crime directly.

Law is supposed to oppose crime with force when it sees it, international law tends not to.

Quote:
International Law is certainly not there for the people of Gaza. Yet.

Nor any time soon.
The people of Gaza have a government and some armed factions able to initiate violent actions, government and factions who have chosen confrontation. They are not defenceless, only considerably weaker than their opponent; a situation in which one ought to avoid confrontation rather than seek it. An end to the launch of Kassam rockets and the release of Gilad Shalit would, I'm sure, bring also an end to current Israeli operations.
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post #159 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
Most of which happened within conflicts in which they were involved. Liberal demcoracies are not adherents to Ghandian non-violence not should they, some of their actions are mistaken and reprehensible, they are made by humans not angels.

So why do you make them out to be more peaceful and just then they are?


Quote:
I stopped caring when I saw the the Khmer-Rouges being given free rein by the very same international law (not that I expected much of it before but even my low expectations were disappointed).

I tend to believe that the rise to power of the KR was fueled by the actions of a couple of big "liberal democracies" in a neighboring country.

Quote:
To have an actually functioning international law you'd need to have a supra-national sovereign power with all-powerful international enforcement capabilities, and hope it abides by a modicum of liberal demcoratic principles. Not happening nor going to be.

Not really. But you need to build some trust in the system, and willingness to abide by it.

Quote:
Sovereign countries respect international law when it is concurrent with the interest of more powerful countries or when it otherwise suits them.

In the case of Israel, the US and some others, yes. But most countries actually respect International Law, respect decissions by it's courts in conflicts of interests, and adjust their policies in accordance with it.

Quote:
Too little too late.

True. It's far from good enough.

Quote:
Law is supposed to oppose crime with force when it sees it, international law tends not to.

Most application of law has nothing to do with force. At least where I live.


Quote:
Nor any time soon.
The people of Gaza have a government and some armed factions able to initiate violent actions, government and factions who have chosen confrontation. They are not defenceless, only considerably weaker than their opponent; a situation in which one ought to avoid confrontation rather than seek it. An end to the launch of Kassam rockets and the release of Gilad Shalit would, I'm sure, bring also an end to current Israeli operations.

Sure, but there is no justification in depriving a million people of electricity and water because of one soldier. This was never about Gilad. It is about the IDFs ambitions, and an israeli government without any backbone and ability to actually control it's own armed forces. And Hamas gains from this.
Edit: And consquently, both the israelis and the palestinians suffer.

But in the end, what is the alternative to International Law? Either we work to improve it, or we abandon it. The latter is no alternative if we want conditions to improve both for our "liberal democracies" and "those others".
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post #160 of 882
Quote:
Originally posted by New
So why do you make them out to be more peaceful and just then they are?

I don't make them out to be more peaceful, they are less atrocious than the alternatives.


Quote:
I tend to believe that the rise to power of the KR was fueled by the actions of a couple of big "liberal democracies" in a neighboring country.

The horrors committed by the Khmer-Rouges were their responsibility alone.

Quote:
Quote:
Originally posted by Immanuel Goldstein
To have an actually functioning international law you'd need to have a supra-national sovereign power with all-powerful international enforcement capabilities, and hope it abides by a modicum of liberal demcoratic principles. Not happening nor going to be.

Not really. But you need to build some trust in the system, and willingness to abide by it.

Dismantle the police in a country and see if people build trust in the system or have any willingness to abide by the law.
The system is only trusted when it has teeth.

Quote:
Quote:
Sovereign countries respect international law when it is concurrent with the interest of more powerful countries or when it otherwise suits them.

In the case of Israel, the US and some others, yes. But most countries actually respect International Law, respect decissions by it's courts in conflicts of interests, and adjust their policies in accordance with it.

Most countries respect international law when it suits and noty when it doens't in this troubled world, some countries are under a mignifying glass such as Israel or the US, so they get noticed more.

Quote:
Most application of law has nothing to do with force. At least where I live.

Some places need less force than other, but the monopoly of organised armed force by the sovereign state exists also where you live (if I recall, somewhere in Scandinavia).


Quote:
Sure, but there is no justification in depriving a million people of electricity and water because of one soldier.

Targetting enemy infrastructures is a common retaliation to an armed attack.

Quote:
This was never about Gilad. It is about the IDFs ambitions, and an israeli government without any backbone and ability to actually control it's own armed forces. And Hamas gains from this.

That is your speculation on the matter. I don't agree woth it.
As said previoulsy, should the Palestinians release the soldier and stop lauching Kassam rockets, the Israeli attack would stop.

Quote:
But in the end, what is the alternative to International Law? Either we work to improve it, or we abandon it. The latter is no alternative if we want conditions to improve both for our "liberal democracies" and "those others".

In a liberal democracy individual citizen has the opprtunity to improve the record of the country (an opportunity much less available under other systems of government), as to the various treaties, conventions, and customs which make international law, countries will keep respecting them when it suits them as long as it doesn't hinder their interest or security.
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