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World War 3 Thread


Knuckledragger

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I think the desire not to ruffle feathers when other people have strong opinions on both sides, is the reason for many not wanting to post.

I also believe that history has shown that to be a very dangerous action. I hate war, but war is going to continue until humans are gone as a species. It's sad, but it's true.

Sometimes you have to take a stand.  I am appalled at Hamas' terrorist methods. I believe that they will continue to indiscriminately kill jews at any chance given. So the obvious solution is to not give any more chances. I don't apologize for my stance. Expecting a heavily discriminated group of people to accept being slaughtered is as insane as wanting to slaughter them.

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When Voyager 1's camera was turned back towards earth, five and a half light hours away in 1990 (it is now 23 light hours distant), Earth was captured in less than a single pixel in the image. Of this pale blue dot, Carl Sagan said

"From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest. But for us, it's different. Consider again that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.

— Carl Sagan"

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After everything said here recently, it's probably worth reading today's look back at the last serious attempt at peace, including the rise of Hamas and Netanyahu. Plenty of complications and blame to spread around. For those without NYT subscriptions PDF attached. 

Thirty years ago, a negotiated settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict seemed achievable. The story of how it fell apart reveals why the fight remains so intractable today.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2023/11/20/magazine/israel-gaza-oslo-accords.html

Why the Oslo Accord Between Israelis and Palestinians Failed.pdf

 

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21 hours ago, tyrion said:

Seeing the people who have like the posts, other than mine, I think it is time for me to go. Please delete my account. I tried but could not figure out how to do so in the settlings.

No can do, Mike.  As in, I don’t really think it’s possible and I also don’t want to.  If you want to take a break, short, long, or otherwise from this place you are free to do so as an exercise of your free will.  But I won’t be the thing that prevents you from coming back.  That seems like the exact opposite of how I feel about this.  It also feels very much like revisionist history and would likely break/ruin quite a few good threads around here.  Jacob did it once and it was awful.  

I know this has affected you deeply, Mike.  And just so we’re clear, I liked your earlier post because I agree, you’ve always been a great part of this community and incredibly generous with your support. 

@skullguise - thanks for taking the time to write your response. 

 

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Ric, thanks for that document.  I think it covers a lot of what happened that time fairly accurately from what I've read and heard.  I also had known about it not guaranteeing a formal Palestinian state, but had also heard that the intent was to pave the way towards that goal after some time of peace, and the UN would hear the vote on that like it did with Israel originally.

But it was indeed both sides - the attacks from the Palestinians that didn't stop, and the settlers in Israel who pushed into West Bank - that didn't allow the process to go further.  It was interesting to see the point of view that the settlers were LEGALLY allowed to continue their population of the area.  But personally I don't agree with that argument, and see them as morally and ethically wrong.  If you want true peace, Israel has shown they'd trade land for it (if peace can be truly kept).  And in Gaza, Israel fully backed out years ago.

I would hope that someday this will happen again.  I worry that the violent elements like Hamas have too strong a hold, and Israel needs to get rid of Netanyahu and his ilk from positions of power as well.  Major work for both sides....each is trying to cement their hold on their respective citizens.

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On 11/18/2023 at 12:44 PM, Knuckledragger said:

As I'm sure all of you know, on October 7th of this year, Hamas launched an attack on Israel, killing over 1200 people.  That makes it the deadliest day in history for Jewish people since the holocaust.  The situation has only degraded more in the following month.  Oct 7 has been Israel's 9/11.  Bibi Netanyahu, an unpopular, corrupt, right wing leader has used the tragedy to dodge criminal investigations against him and further his agenda and position in power.  [NB: As much as I loath the man, I'd be doing Dubya a dirty if I directly compared him to Bibi.  Shrub ain't even in the same order of magnitude of "corrupt."]  The Israeli response to Oct 7th has been immense by any standard.  Israel dropped more on bombs in Gaza in a week than the US dropped on Afghanistan during the most intense year of that war.  Afghanistan is over a quarter of million square miles.  Gaza is 139.  There have been a few batshit insane calls for Israel to nuke Gaza.  It's been an open secret for decades that Israel has nuclear weapons.  Even the most more bloodthirsty war hawk understand why Israel would not detonate a nuke right next to their own border.  With that said, Israel has effectively nuked Gaza.  The combined explosive force of the conventional bombs dropped by Israel (over 25,000 tons at this point) is the equivalent to a couple tactical nuclear weapons.  (Strategic nukes are an order of magnitude bigger and usually originate from missile silos or submarines.)

The western media coverage of the unending clusterfuck has been a nightmare of its own.  As a longtime user of reddit (my account is older than most of the site's user base at this point), I have been absolutely gobsmacked at the state of /r/worldnews.  It's essentially become /r/IDF_press_releases.  I generally stay out of the fray on reddit, both for my own mental health and because I know it does no good.  I made one post calling out an influx of obvious bot accounts in worldnews, and was rewarded with my comment being shadowbanned.  It's more than a bit scary to see such blatant astroturfing occurring online, especially as someone who clearly remembers the post-9/11, early Iraq War II era. 

Its is my understanding that the polar opposite of what's happening on most of reddit is taking place on Tik Tok.  I have not nor will I ever use that app.  I see plenty of complaining about Tik Tok and complaining about complaining about Tik Tok and ...fuck it, I'm closing the goddamn web page and looking at cat videos. 

With all of this said, it's almost invariably true that the best coverage of a controversial issue is done via comedy.  Everyone's favorite self-deprecating British expat dedicated half an hour to the Israel-Hamas war and did a better job than most of the corporate media combined:

 

Re: John Oliver -- he's not entirely unbiased.  He still does the same thing the rest of the liberal media (and Roger Waters) does to Israel in terms of expressing outrage over their actions.

Oh, and I definitely disagree with him about children.  I FUCKING HATE CHILDREN.  I have had that protective instinct completely taught out of me BY CHILDREN who tried to drop things on my head while I was moving back in March and April.  I hope those kids die, and soon.

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This whole situation is so incredibly sad and terrible. I don't feel qualified to offer commentary, besides hating the death and suffering on all sides. I do think that bombing the shit out of Gaza, besides being a humanitarian disaster, will prove to be a very effective recruitment drive for Hamas. What should Israel do instead? I have no fucking clue. But I don't think this is it. 

For my own mental health, I've tried to limit my intake of the chaos of social media, and daily news. Not to say I'm ignoring the situation, just that I can't deal with it all at once.

I've been listening to this podcast, Our Man in the Middle East, which takes a long-term regional view from a BBC Middle East correspondent at the end of his career. It was published in 2017 I think, and IMO it does a good job of showing how difficult peace in the Middle East is. 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08rmkcd/episodes/player?page=3

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On 11/20/2023 at 2:49 PM, skullguise said:

As a Jew myself, I fully stand by Israel.  Mike makes a lot of true and salient points.  Even the "illegal" settling of the West Bank was done AFTER several surrounding countries attacked Israel, and they gained the land.  The Sinai peninsula is another example of that.  But Israel gave that land back to Egypt as a part of a peace settlement.

The Palestinians - in Gaza or the West Bank - have never agreed to any peace settlement with Israel.  So Israel has not given back the West Bank.  They HAVE left Gaza alone, and have been out of there basically since 2005 IIRC.  The non-Israeli's in the West bank have continued to send suicide bombers into Israel, so it's always a hotbed of violence.  

The bombing of Gaza is indeed massive.  I have mixed feelings about that because 1) until Hamas is removed there will just be more bombs/missiles/attacks on Israel, and 2) thousands of civilians are dead and tens or hundreds of thousands displaced.  I wish it wasn't happening, but I still lean to Israel's side because of #1 above, AND the fact that this wouldn't be happening if October 7th hadn't happened.  And any sign of weakness with Israel is a sign for others to do what Hamas has done.  I will ALSO recognize that Netanyahu uses this to exercise his power in war.

I cannot stand Netanyahu, indeed he is a right-wing power hungry asshat who would marginalize many in Israel, Arab and Jew alike.  I also condemn the settlers who force their way into the West Bank.  I would like to hope that some day it can be part of the Palestinian/Arab state and self-govern...peacefully.  Tens of thousands of Israeli's have protested Netanyahu's attempts at grabbing power and many of his policies.

But I will always support Israel, and condemn Hamas and any non-peaceful Palestinian.  Mike is right, Palestinians cheered when the dead bodies of some of the Israeli's were paraded around.  I also think they've been taught only with propaganda that everything wrong in their lives is because of Jews/Israel.  In many ways they don't know better.

I was having a passionate but relatively peaceful debate with someone, who was also focusing on the horrible conditions in Gaza.  I asked the same question as noted above: would this be happening if October 7th never happened?  And when he said that Hamas doesn't represent all Palestinians, I agreed.  Then I asked: why don't they protest or revolt?  And the answer was that the people in power wouldn't let them or accept it (they have actually killed those who rally against them).  So of course, I then asked: who is oppressing the Palestinians more?  The answer is clearly Hamas.  They place weapons and fighters in or next to civilian locations (schools, hospitals, etc.) and don't let people evacuate (or at least until so many have died and they can use it as propaganda).  There are videos from their leaders saying they will have civilian casualties to achieve their goals.

I'm rambling....I'm not as firm as Mike to say you MUST support my thoughts or like my posts.  But I understand his passion, because as Jews we KNOW what it's like when people do nothing (ref: Hitler and Germany in WW2).

What I would ask is to do some research and help form a stronger opinion.  Research at how Palestinians have been kicked out of several Arab countries (because of the elements of violence) and are not welcome even as refugees.  Read what Hamas stands for (eradicating Jews in Israel, as well as globally).  Understand who is the MOST oppressive to the Palestinian people, what "genocide" REALLY means (guess what: Hamas is genocidal in intent, Israel is not), and then recognize that Jews have been marginalized and attacked globally and throughout history perhaps more than any other race/religion.

And also do research into how many Arab on Arab conflicts have resulted in dead Palestinians and other Arab populations, and try and understand why there is so little outcry for the Palestinian people in those situations.  Because it's not Israel doing it.....that's a sure sign of Antisemitism....

So I get where Mike is coming from, and feel much of the same fear and sometimes anger.  I don't expect anyone to like my post, but at least to read it and try to learn more, to help understand.

I am with you 100%. Enough said. 

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I'll stop after this post, but Ezra Klein & NYTimes did a couple podcasts recently, one from the Palestinian and one from the Jewish Israeli perspective. I clarified on the latter as 1/5th of population of Israel is Arab, a group possibly pulled in multiple directions, though obviously there are diverse opinions on all sides. The goal of the podcasts, as stated, is not to pick who won, but, if possible, to understand some of both. If you don't have any interest in that probably best to skip. 

 

Why Palestinians Feel They’ve Been ‘Duped’

The Palestinian policy analyst and writer Amjad Iraqi on how Gaza’s past, present and future look from his eyes. 

https://www.nytimes.com/2023/11/07/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-amjad-iraqi.html

 

What Israelis Fear the World Does Not Understand

The writer Yossi Klein Halevi talks about why many Israelis see the ongoing conflict as an “existential war.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2023/11/10/opinion/ezra-klein-podcast-yossi-klein-halevi.html

 

(also on Apple, Spotify, etc.)

 

Edited by blessingx
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I used to work for an Israeli company, I loosely keep in touch with several folks there.  The "average" Israeli, according to most of them, wants peace and would gladly accept a two state solution.

The key as to why many still hesitate, and don't want to just make a formal state of Palestine, is that the Palestinians have proven NOT to be able to push out the violent part of their population.

There is a history in Jordan, Kuwait, Egypt, and I think even Saudi Arabia, where Palestinian populations - or that extreme element at least - incited violence, caused strife, and celebrated local Arab deaths.  There is a reason that Palestinian refugees are not being taken in by other Arab countries....

These Israeli's I know agree that Israel will gladly give land for peace (TBD about Netanyahu), but still would need proof that Palestinians would be peaceful before allowing them to be a formal state.  Self-govern is indeed one thing, and in the case of Gaza (which has self-governed since about 2005) it has not proven peaceful at all.

One person I know was in tears over the bombings, for the civilian lives lost, and as Iain says will be propaganda for Hamas recruitment.  But he also echoes others' thoughts that Israel almost has no choice.  If they give in too much without the promise of peace, they will be seen as weak, and others will repeat what Hamas has done.

I just saw a picture by Banksy which showed a small Jewish and (I assume) Palestinian child watering/caring for a small tree that seemed just planted.  That made me sad...if one generation can be taught that peace is an option, there can be hope.  But so far, I'm not seeing it....

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2 hours ago, skullguise said:

I used to work for an Israeli company, I loosely keep in touch with several folks there.  The "average" Israeli, according to most of them, wants peace and would gladly accept a two state solution.

The key as to why many still hesitate, and don't want to just make a formal state of Palestine, is that the Palestinians have proven NOT to be able to push out the violent part of their population.

There is a history in Jordan, Kuwait, Egypt, and I think even Saudi Arabia, where Palestinian populations - or that extreme element at least - incited violence, caused strife, and celebrated local Arab deaths.  There is a reason that Palestinian refugees are not being taken in by other Arab countries....

These Israeli's I know agree that Israel will gladly give land for peace (TBD about Netanyahu), but still would need proof that Palestinians would be peaceful before allowing them to be a formal state.  Self-govern is indeed one thing, and in the case of Gaza (which has self-governed since about 2005) it has not proven peaceful at all.

One person I know was in tears over the bombings, for the civilian lives lost, and as Iain says will be propaganda for Hamas recruitment.  But he also echoes others' thoughts that Israel almost has no choice.  If they give in too much without the promise of peace, they will be seen as weak, and others will repeat what Hamas has done.

I just saw a picture by Banksy which showed a small Jewish and (I assume) Palestinian child watering/caring for a small tree that seemed just planted.  That made me sad...if one generation can be taught that peace is an option, there can be hope.  But so far, I'm not seeing it....

I totally agree with the points you're making -- everyone wants to see an end to this madness, cease-fire on both sides, living in peace and harmony, but no-one can envision how to get there from here.  Especially when something like October 7 happens, which cannot be ignored.

I applied for a job for a company in Israel right before October 7.  I would like to ping them again, but I don't know how to even broach the subject of, "hey, are you all alright?"  I'm afraid I might be turned into an anti-Hamas extremist, myself.

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There was an interview with some US administration hawk on the UK's radio 4 a day or two ago. He said that his advice was to hit Iran hard - really hard. And take massive economic sanctions against China, who he accused of supplying arms to Iran.

God help the world if this crazy couplet of policies is put into practice.

First off - how many countries does the US (and Europe for that matter) cheerfully arm to the teeth? We found that out during the Falklands War, where our ships were hit by Exocet missiles - previously supplied to Argentina by the French.

And US/UK's reputation in attacking countries does not end well. Libya? post Ghadaffy it is still a shit show. Afghanistan? Similar - it took the ultra orthodox Taliban five minutes to take control once we "withdrew". Iraq? Still a mess, and only now just about recovering.

And the crazy partition of Israel into Gaza and Israel by the UN in late 1947 was never going to end well, in the same way that the UK partitioned India (by Mountbatten) into India and Pakistan - again in 1947 - is still a matter of massive tensions in the region.

We really do fuck up the globe big time.

  

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4 hours ago, skullguise said:

I just want advanced aliens to come (back? 😄) to Earth and send a massive "Kindness Ray" across the globe.

Is that too much to ask?!

That would be very nice, but, I suspect given the general behaviour of the human race, that there is a giant no fly zone around the sol solar system. I also think "humanity" probably has developed immunity to kindness/forgiveness.

8 hours ago, Craig Sawyers said:

First off - how many countries does the US (and Europe for that matter) cheerfully arm to the teeth? We found that out during the Falklands War, where our ships were hit by Exocet missiles - previously supplied to Argentina by the French.

 

The story goes that the Argentinians could not get the Exocet working so as part of the support package they had several french advisors fly to argentina during the war to help them use them against the uk ships.... 

(https://theweek.com/world-news/falkland-islands/45704/bbc-finds-evidence-french-helped-argentines-sink-our-ships)

remember it pays to pay for the support package

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I have to fess up here. In the Falklands, Rapier missile emplacements were dropped on the beach head. Rapier missiles were tracked to their (aircraft) target at that stage using S-band microwaves.

That neatly jammed the radar on our own ships - who promptly told the Rapier crews to turn off the missile tracker. That left them with the only option to sit in the launcher nest and manually track using a rate joystick and sighting crosshairs.

Now they were not good at this, and led to a need to train crews in how to manually track.

From the Wikipedia entry https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapier_(missile)

"In the 1980s, a new training simulator system was constructed in Stevenage. This consisted of a 10-metre (33 ft) radius hemispherical dome whose inside surface was used as a movie screen onto which terrain images were projected. A copper vapor laser projected images of targets and the missiles in-flight on top of the background imagery, while a smaller helium-neon laser simulated the Rapier's tracking flare. A complete Rapier targeting unit was placed in the center of the dome, and its guidance signals were captured and sent to the simulator to update the position of the missile. The projected laser imagery was bright enough that it could be tracked by IR imagers and seekers, allowing it to be used with the updated Darkfire versions of the Rapier with their IR cameras, or other IR seeking missiles like the Stinger. This system was sold separately for use with other missile systems under the name British Aerospace Microdome.

And laser image projection system was developed my me as a consultant when working for https://www.paconsulting.com/about/global-innovation-and-technology-centre .

The whole British Aerospace simulator was darned impressive. There was a 1kW audio system in there to give a realistic sound effect of launching, as well as sound effects from the targets (helicopters, jets etc). Scared the bejeesus out of me when we were testing it. 

Edited by Craig Sawyers
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