Justifiable wars??

Discussion in 'Opinions, Beliefs, & Points of View' started by shades, Jun 11, 2009.

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  1. shades

    shades Staff Alumni

    Are all wars that your country has been involved in JUSTIFIABLE, if only for the reason that soldiers died in them?

    I ask this question from the point of view of an observer. I really would like to hear the point of view of a soldier who has served in the U.S. wars in Korea, Vietnam or Iraq or one who plans to serve. One can obviously make the case that WWI and WWII were justifiable from a moral, economic and political point of view.

    But what of the wars that have generated discussion and debate?

    Many times our country has told us that we need only look to a soldier who has served (especially if they have been injured), the family who has lost a loved one, or an injured soldier, and that it will make the war JUSTIFIABLE.

    However, I have known soldiers (especially from the Vietnam war) who have come home injured (physically and mentally) yet have fought for the truth in holding our government accountable.

    Also, how would you feel if the war you fought in was deemed to be UNJUSTIFIABLE by the public at large and the government was found to have lied about it?
  2. Hache

    Hache Well-Known Member

    I think the falklands war the Argentine's wanted to make a statement, to their only people if anything, and take islands inhabited by birds and british villages. We sent out troops down there and showed the world our power more than anything else.

    We were right to protect the island because everyone on the islands were british, the land was taken from Argentina a long long time a go but that doesn't mean they should get it back anymore.

    Afghanistan probably is justifyable, Iraq is a big financial mess, it depends how many people's lives are being improved and where Iraq can go from here.

    I dont know how many people in these countrys we are fighting for! That is the big decider, fighting for their human rights, democracy etc

    The thing about war, for me, is it isn't about the soldiers. They signed up and knew what they were signing up for, the loss of life is sad, I don't agree with it, but what is right and wrong to me is not the same as everyone else, soldier v soldier that is what both want, to "kill" the enemy, to risk your life for others. But war, is about the loss of innocent lives, when that happens there is a problem and it can not be justified. Then there is also the financial aspect, what the money could have been spent on!
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 11, 2009
  3. MeAndYou

    MeAndYou Well-Known Member

    Good thread.

    I get frustrated when i hear soldiers or people say things like "Our boys and girls are over in iraq fighting for our freedom!". Are people really this easily deceived? Its everyones defense against someone who doesnt support the war and its just plain wrong.

    Dont misunderstand me though. I want our soldiers (i live in the US AND have a friend over in Iraq) home NOW. Why? Because they ARENT fighting for anyones freedom they are fighting an agenda the administrations (plural) dont like to tell us. We are probably less safe now than we were before 9/11 as a result of the wars in the middle east. Obama gives great speeches but his foreign policy is worse than bushes simply because its nearly identical. And to continue on a path of disaster after all evidence would imply you should probably turn away from it is just as bad as starting us on the path in the first place.

    I dont believe Afghanistan is a justified war anymore because essentially the bush administration held the door open for "osama bin laden and company" to flee to pakistan while focusing energy/money/time/troops/etc on Iraq which not only is a huge financial mess...but also an unconstitutional act of violence against a country that as of now has not had any ties to 9/11. They also didnt have WMDs, so now the goal is to instill a democracy in a muslim region. In case someone doesnt understand that issue, democracy is a western idea and essentially goes against the entire culture of the region (let alone the religion...and we all know what happens when religion meets guns).

    Congress didnt even declare war with iraq they just gave president bush the authority to declare war and in the constitution it says congress is the only body of government that can declare war. I know its argueing symantics but thats all politics is...symantics. Congress didnt want blame for an unjistified war in case it failed and so they sidestepped actually declaring war and gave the ability to bush (which is unconstitutional). After that bush just had to get the UN on his side which he did by buying out UNESCO with hundreds of millions of tax payer dollars. UNESCO is a group within the United Nations which goal is to encourage peaceful diplomatic resolutions/negotiations as opposed to declaration of war. Its also the same group President Reagan removed the united states from during his tenure. So its an illegal unconstitutional war (just like vietnam and you could probably argue the same for the Korean war as well). Unfortunately obama is going to keep us there for a very very long time. (the administration still employs a quarter million contractors in Iraq.........war is profit).

    So no my country has not declared war legitimately.
  4. fromthatshow

    fromthatshow Staff Alumni SF Supporter

    I do not think that killing is ever justifiable. An eye for an eye has gotten us nowhere.
    All wars are political or money related, they have nothing to do with our personal safety. That's just my opinion.

    Well said!
  5. Brighid Moon

    Brighid Moon Member & Antiquities Friend

  6. Ziggy

    Ziggy Antiquitie's Friend

    I think in the future we'll see war for what it really is. People will fight over resources, no matter how bloody or brutal it may be. There will be no morals, or protests, or debates on late night talk shows, there will only be the desire to survive.
  7. MeAndYou

    MeAndYou Well-Known Member

    I find nature to be a great mediator on this earth. A force whose goal is balance in a great act of symbiosis.

    I think we as humans have tipped the scales greatly. We're polluting, destroying wildlife and habitat, and above all we're already over populated. Its just a matter of time before nature begins to balance things out again (or until we actually start seeing it happen because its probably already started) but who knows if we'll do the job ourselves first (through war).

    It will be interesting as more and more people seek the lifestyle most westernized/industrialized countries boast. Everything from a starbucks across the street to running water. Natural resources will def. be something that will strike wars (history says it always has been an issue worth killing over). But it will be interesting as generally here in america the wars are fought for other motives as of late. Rich man wars fought by the poor. That will probably change when it comes to our water.
  8. shades

    shades Staff Alumni

    ZIGGY: probably right on about the resources. In fact, we're pretty sure (most of us anyway, in U.S.) that Iraq was all about getting our hands on some of that oil. Even when the soldiers come home, we've already got the infrstrucure there to help them get it and take some home in the process. Truly disgusting!

    MEANDYOU: Everything you said=right on the money!
  9. The_8th_Wonder

    The_8th_Wonder senior Member

    Every war seems justifiable when it starts it seems. Even the Viet Nam war could be justified when it started. There's no way to tell if a war is necessary or not until after the conflict is resolved. The military now is on a volunteer only basis. People feel sorry for those who died in Viet Nam because the war was "un-just" but what about those who died or were injured in wars that were just but suffered the same fate as those who were hurt in wars that were un-just.

    Honestly I don't have much sympathy for people who volunteer for the military. Maybe if less people volunteered for the army the government would get involved in less conflicts.
  10. MeAndYou

    MeAndYou Well-Known Member

    Well its true, those who volunteer are quite literally giving up their rights to a "normal" life and no one is making that direct decision but themselves. They begin their training on how to kill/police. But i DO have sympathy for those that go to war under the guise of fighting for our country and our rights when that is not the case. Recruiters and recruitment tactics have also been known to target minorities, lower class citizens, and just generally people who think they have no other options.

    The Vietnam war was a war of total choice but the general american public didnt know just how much of a choice it was until later (sounds familiar). In fact it was many many years later that our government officially admitted that the "Golf of tonkin" incident didnt actually happen, which is the incident that essentially sparked the flame that carried the united states over to vietnam wrapped in a mindset of war.

    "The Who" wrote a song called "Wont get fooled again" which was about the vietnam war. I think we should retitle it to "NOW we wont get fooled again".
  11. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    It's usually only the families of soldiers - or even just the unconnected public - that raises an issue concerning the loss of life. I've noticed that even when fighting in wars they personally disagree with or that are considered unecessary (Vietnam, Iraq, etc), the average American soldiers fights just as bravely and asks no questions - not to say they don't feel terribly affected by it afterward, but that's a different story.

    As you've all noted, in a volunteer army, one knows whats to come and is largely prepared (and might I add superbly trained) to deal with it. Most people that willing join the armed forces tend to feel they have nowhere else to go or that the benefits are well worth the risks they're prepared to take. It's interesting to note that the US has the 2nd largest armed forces in the world and yet its only one of two countries in the top 10 that relies on volunteers instead of forcibly conscripted recruits (the other is India, though it has over three times the population). This is a testament to just how attractive our army is, as well as how effective the benefits and recruitment tactics.

    Personally, I feel bad for the poor guys trapped in their armed forces, and their wars, by law. It's no wonder conscript armies usually - but not always - before worse than volunteer-based ones.

    War is essentially the continuation politics by other means. The factors to determine its justification could thus be 1) could we have found another way and 2) were the politics worth it? All that in itself is subjective. For all societies, and indeed international law, a war fought in defense is undoubtedly a just war. That's why all armies (and their governments) claim to be maintained for just that reason and also why every war is backed up, falsely or not, by the idea that we're defending ourselves, be it 'preemptively,' 'preventatively,' etc. Even a lot of Axis rhetoric during WWII tried to go this route, first to defend against the Jewish plot, then the expansionist communist threat, etc. Heck, the US didn't find a good enough reason until Japan went ahead and gave us one (just as in WWI, which we only went into after we lost Americans in the Lusitania that sunk by the Germans).

    But what about a war fought FOR justice, which itself is subjective. What if we sent troops into Sudan? Or the Congo? Or Burma? These are people that are most definitely in need and the effort would be undoubtedly humanitarian (as an aside, I as a humanitarian would endorse some sort of involvement, were it possible). One could argue the war would be just and that the lives lost are worthy for the cause of human rights.

    Well that leads to the other aspect of war, which is that, in the end, war's are fought for the interests of the country (presumably) and its administration. If there are no national interests spun into it in order to justify participation and the investment in blood and money, it gets less backing, if any at all (hence the emphasis on the 9/11 link - how likely would we have gone if we said it was to free Iraqis?) It all depends on where your interests lie.
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