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RE: [ujeni] FW: War on Iraq Test

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  • Holland, Mark
    Vyrle and ujeni, much as I respect your opinion I don t agree at all. I think the central reason a majority of people in this country support this war is that
    Message 1 of 12 , Mar 26, 2003
       
      Vyrle and ujeni, much as I respect your opinion I don't agree at all.  I think the central reason a majority of people in this country support this war is that they've been feed oversimplifications about the threat, and that such representations don't cause people to think but rather cause "anti-thinking", a hardening of opinion to fact.  If I'm going to criticize the administration for its manipulation of the public opinion in presenting the case for war, I have to do the same when the article in question takes the other side.
       
      Mark
      -----Original Message-----
      From: Vyrle Owens [mailto:vyrle@...]
      Sent: Wednesday, March 26, 2003 12:47 AM
      To: ujeni@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: RE: [ujeni] FW: War on Iraq Test

      I appreciate what you said.  I do not worry so much about the details, recognizing that many are wrong, out of context, and in some cases representing a liberal dose of poetic license.  I think what is most important is not what something says, but that something said causes the recipient to "think," to become engaged in the issues.

       

      I found the piece useful, if not exactly factual.

    • Vyrle Owens
      26 March 2003 Dear Mark, Thanks for your reply. I do agree we must be consistent and I appreciate the reminder. As to thinking, non-thinking, and
      Message 2 of 12 , Mar 26, 2003

        26 March 2003

         

        Dear Mark,

         

        Thanks for your reply.  I do agree we must be consistent and I appreciate the reminder.  As to thinking, non-thinking, and anti-thinking oversimplification may I ask for a more studied elaboration as to why the “majority” of people in this country support this war? 

         

        By the way, I also appreciate your willingness to continue to engage the conversation.  Among those with whom I associate, the anti-war people are too angry to listen, the pro-war people are too engaged in dreaming about victory to listen, a certain number of others are relieved that some action is finally taking place but don’t know what to say and do not appear to have ever been listening, a certain number are afraid to get involved trusting the leaders to know best, a few continue to be un-decided, and it seems that several are just waiting to see which way the fortunes and tragedies of war turn.

         

        It feels a little like the early 60’s when I myself was mostly clueless.

         

        Stay well,

         

        Vyrle

         

         

         

         

      • Eric Bone
        Vyrle s observation that it is difficult to have a worthwhile discussion of the war rings true with me. I find what I consider much noise and distraction, and
        Message 3 of 12 , Mar 27, 2003
          Vyrle's observation that it is difficult to have a worthwhile discussion of
          the war rings true with me. I find what I consider much noise and
          distraction, and little consideration of basic principles and the decisions
          that should come out of them. It is my inclination, as an apprentice
          mathematician, to break down my reasoning into the most basic and most
          clear pieces I can. Usually when I look at the discussion in the war, the
          statements made do not stand up to scrutiny. This is true both for several
          statements in the "War on Iraq Test" and in the list Paul fowarded. Mark
          has already pointed out examples of these.

          Here is the heart of my reasoning.

          1. Assumption: There are circumstances where going to war is a better
          alternative than not going to war.

          a. One such situation is when the lack of
          war would prevent large numbers of civilian deaths. Rwanda stands out as a
          case when going to war would have been better. I believe Bosnia and Kosovo
          also fall in this category.

          b. Another situation is when a country or organization has
          attacked you, or is soon going to attack you and you have no other way of
          preventing this.

          These are the only circumstances that I can think of as legitimate
          justification for war. I have heard other categories of reasons, but I do
          not accept them, and therefore I do not include them in my assumptions.

          2. Question: Do either of these assumptions apply to the relationship
          between the US and Iraq?
          I don't believe situation (a) can be seriously considered.
          That leaves situation (b). Has Iraq attacked us? Will Iraq
          attack us soon?

          3. The Threat:
          Officials of the Bush
          administration have claimed Iraq cooperates with Al-Qaeda, who attacked us.
          The evidence they have presented for that has not been convincing to me.
          That has not been the main claim. The main argument has been that Iraq
          posesses chemical and biological weapons, and that they will use them soon
          against us, whether on their own or in cooperation with a terrorist
          organization. It seems plausible to me that Iraq posesses these weapons.
          I have not heard any evidence that war is the only means by which we can
          prevent Iraq from attacking us with these weapons.

          4. Trust of the Administration:
          I also know that the Bush administration has much more
          information than I do. They are in a better position to decide whether war
          is the only way to prevent an attack. If they have convincing information,
          they have chosen not to make it public.

          5. Conclusion:
          The Bush administration has done nothing to win my trust concerning their
          decisions in foreign policy and security. In fact, most of their decisions
          since they came to power have led me to distrust them. Since I am not
          convinced of their judgment, I do not trust them to make this decision
          about going to war based on information that they do not share. I believe
          that we should not engage in a war unless and until our enemy is an
          immediate threat. I don't believe that is the case here. I believe that
          Michael Moore is correct to say that we are at war for "fictitious
          reasons."

          There is plenty more to talk about, but I've spent too much time thinking
          about this already.

          -Eric
        • Bell, Elizabeth
          Thank you, Eric, for your eloquence. What you ve laid out falls more/most in line with my thinking at this time. I ve worked in countries with horrible regimes
          Message 4 of 12 , Mar 27, 2003
            Thank you, Eric, for your eloquence.

            What you've laid out falls more/most in line with my thinking at this time.


            I've worked in countries with horrible regimes and in countries after
            horrible wars. I am not a knee jerk peacenik (although in my idealistic
            youth I was). Two quotes come to mind:

            I believe in peace, but not peace at any costs.
            -Bishop Desmond Tutu.

            War is sometimes necessary, but it is always evil.
            -Jimmy Carter

            The two examples you cite are situations where we knew genocide was
            happening and I was always horrified that the world community did not step
            in. I still believe that Rwanda and Bosnia are almost unbearable
            humanitarian failures, it gives me nightmares to think about it too much.

            I guess the bottom line at this point is that I do not trust this
            administration, nor its stated reasons for starting this war. I do not
            support this kind of unilateral action and think we will pay the diplomatic
            price for years to come. I believe in the UN and wish we had given
            diplomacy and the inspectors more time, but I also can not stand Saddam
            Hussein and what he and his regime have done to the people of Iraq for so
            long.

            I just want this to be over quickly.

            Liz

            Elizabeth Bell, MPH
            STOP Activity Unit
            Polio Eradication Branch
            Global Immunization Division
            Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


            -----Original Message-----
            From: Eric Bone [mailto:bone@...]
            Sent: Thursday, March 27, 2003 11:36 AM
            To: ujeni@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: RE: [ujeni] FW: War on Iraq Test

            Vyrle's observation that it is difficult to have a worthwhile discussion of
            the war rings true with me. I find what I consider much noise and
            distraction, and little consideration of basic principles and the decisions
            that should come out of them. It is my inclination, as an apprentice
            mathematician, to break down my reasoning into the most basic and most
            clear pieces I can. Usually when I look at the discussion in the war, the
            statements made do not stand up to scrutiny. This is true both for several
            statements in the "War on Iraq Test" and in the list Paul fowarded. Mark
            has already pointed out examples of these.

            Here is the heart of my reasoning.

            1. Assumption: There are circumstances where going to war is a better
            alternative than not going to war.

            a. One such situation is when the lack of
            war would prevent large numbers of civilian deaths. Rwanda stands out as a
            case when going to war would have been better. I believe Bosnia and Kosovo
            also fall in this category.

            b. Another situation is when a country or organization has
            attacked you, or is soon going to attack you and you have no other way of
            preventing this.

            These are the only circumstances that I can think of as legitimate
            justification for war. I have heard other categories of reasons, but I do
            not accept them, and therefore I do not include them in my assumptions.

            2. Question: Do either of these assumptions apply to the relationship
            between the US and Iraq?
            I don't believe situation (a) can be seriously considered.
            That leaves situation (b). Has Iraq attacked us? Will Iraq
            attack us soon?

            3. The Threat:
            Officials of the Bush
            administration have claimed Iraq cooperates with Al-Qaeda, who attacked us.

            The evidence they have presented for that has not been convincing to me.
            That has not been the main claim. The main argument has been that Iraq
            posesses chemical and biological weapons, and that they will use them soon
            against us, whether on their own or in cooperation with a terrorist
            organization. It seems plausible to me that Iraq posesses these weapons.
            I have not heard any evidence that war is the only means by which we can
            prevent Iraq from attacking us with these weapons.

            4. Trust of the Administration:
            I also know that the Bush administration has much more
            information than I do. They are in a better position to decide whether war
            is the only way to prevent an attack. If they have convincing information,
            they have chosen not to make it public.

            5. Conclusion:
            The Bush administration has done nothing to win my trust concerning their
            decisions in foreign policy and security. In fact, most of their decisions
            since they came to power have led me to distrust them. Since I am not
            convinced of their judgment, I do not trust them to make this decision
            about going to war based on information that they do not share. I believe
            that we should not engage in a war unless and until our enemy is an
            immediate threat. I don't believe that is the case here. I believe that
            Michael Moore is correct to say that we are at war for "fictitious
            reasons."

            There is plenty more to talk about, but I've spent too much time thinking
            about this already.

            -Eric









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          • Vyrle Owens
            27 March 2003 Dear all, Not to change the subject or anything but just in case you may be interested in something of more permanent relevance than war, I just
            Message 5 of 12 , Mar 27, 2003
              27 March 2003

              Dear all,

              Not to change the subject or anything but just in case you may be
              interested in something of more permanent relevance than war, I just
              finished an outstanding book about soil and other things. Should be of
              particular interest to the natural resource and agriculture folks but
              also relevant to other interests as well.

              Hillel, Daniel J., "Out of the Earth: Civilization and the Life of the
              Soil", 1991, The Free Press, New York


              Part 1 is "For Soil Thou Art"

              The final part is: "Unto Soil Shalt Thou Return"

              The Author is a professor at University of Massachusetts.

              Enjoy,

              Vyrle
            • Vyrle Owens
              27 April 2003 Dear everyone, We are planning a get-together, (picnic, potluck, barbecue/braii) for everyone who can come on Saturday, 21 June. Mid-morning to
              Message 6 of 12 , Apr 27, 2003
                27 April 2003

                Dear everyone,

                We are planning a get-together, (picnic, potluck, barbecue/braii) for
                everyone who can come on Saturday, 21 June. Mid-morning to late
                afternoon.

                Let us know if you will be in the neighborhood (Dayton, Oregon, not too
                far from Portland) and come on by. More details and directions to
                follow.

                Vyrle and Dolly
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