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Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff: Disobey Orders To Nuke Iran

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posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 06:51 AM
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Originally posted by Seekerof

The use of "genocide" in the a nuclear weapons use reference is ludicrous, unless of course, your implying some Islamic nation nuking Israel. Again, your anti-war and peacenik slant is clouding the realities of war and warfare. I indicated that the use of nuclear weapons is not for arbitrary or haphazard use. They are weapons of last resort. BOTH the Russian and the US know this. Does Iran or North Korea? Let me know, k?


Why is it genocide only if its Jews that die? Can't anyone else in the world ever be the victim? I guess you must be Jewish to say that, huh?




posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 07:25 AM
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Did anybody even bother to read the article that's causing this debate?


At the luncheon of the National Press Club on Feb. 17, 2006, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Peter Pace, was asked by his interviewer, John Donnelly: "Should people in the U.S. military disobey orders that they believe are illegal?" Pace's response:

"It is the absolute responsibility of everybody in uniform to disobey an order that is either illegal or immoral."

Thank you, Gen. Pace. Donnelly didn't follow up on his question, so I will, trusting that your answers to my questions will represent your core beliefs, stated on earlier occasions.


The entire article from that point on is fabricated from old quotes taken out of context. This is comedy central stuff, like interviewing old videotape.



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 08:37 AM
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Comedy Situation


Originally posted by mythatsabigprobe
The entire article from that point on is fabricated from old quotes taken out of context. This is comedy central stuff, like interviewing old videotape.

Nonetheless, solid enough of a foundation for creating yet another dog and pony show thread in a forum littered with them.

What amazes me is how tolerant some members are of watching the same old thing over and over and over again.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go watch Special Ed say, "I got mail! I got mail! Yayyyyy!" over and over again for about twenty minutes.



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 08:50 AM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58

Dick Cheney is not authorized to launch a nuclear attack unless the president is incapacitated and he takes over. The president is the only one that can authorize the use of nuclear weapons, so whether Cheney wants to or not is irrelevant.


The president is already incapacitated. He has not got two brain cells to rub together.

/sarcasm



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 11:05 AM
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This little fact is funny. France has a medal for disobeying orders when its the "right thing" to do. I dont know under what circumstance it would be considered right to them. But I just thought some would like to know.



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 12:04 PM
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Seekerof wrote:
As such, and getting back to the topic, if a top US commander is ordered to utilize nukes and he opts to disregard or disobey such an order, he or she will promptly be dismissed/relieved, and if the time ever came and General Pace was placed in that situation, be assured that he would either do what he was ordered to do or he would be promptly dismissed/relieved of his command.


********************************
Seekerof, Gen. Pace is right, anyone in the armed forces, if commanded to do something against the rules of the Geneva Convention or against the laws of the U.S. military, is expected to disobey, meaning that one of the rules in the military is that you don't go against the military's rules. There are some very common sense reasons for this.
My father, an Admiral in the U.S. Navy, told me this many years ago and also by my ex-husband, who fought in the Vietnam war.

-Forestlady



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 12:12 PM
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All military personell are obligated to disobey any order, no matter its origin, if they deem it to be illegal, and/or immoral. But they had better be correct, or all Heck will decend upon said poor schmoe's head.



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 01:14 PM
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Two questions I have for all of you.

1. Does a legal act matter when one of our cities is suddenly gone from a nuclear attack?

2. How will you feel if that city is the one where your family lives?



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 01:16 PM
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Originally posted by mythatsabigprobe

The entire article from that point on is fabricated from old quotes taken out of context. This is comedy central stuff, like interviewing old videotape.


I just caught that. Sorry people. I need to read slower, or something



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 10:20 PM
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Regarding disobeying an order, my comments here refer to the US military only; I don’t know how other countries handle it. In the US military, if you’re ordered to do something that does not violate military code/law, and you disobey, then you’re hosed. Even if your disobedience is morally correct/justified, life ahead for you will take a grim turn. On the other hand, if you’re ordered to do something that is illegal in itself, you are legally obligated to disobey that order. If you obey such an order, both you and the person who issued the order are subject to prosecution/court-martial.

Now, it’s quite possible to be in complete accordance with military code/law and also in violation of international law and the Geneva Convention. In this case, it’s kinda like being on a one way street and getting run over in both directions. You’re hosed, no matter what. You have to decide whether to obey the order now and avoid court-martial, but possibly pay later to the international community for something like crimes against humanity or whatever. Or you can disobey the order now and be court-martialed, blah, blah, blah … The bottom line is, it’s your call, but either way you’re screwed.

In any case, I think General Pace was correct.

Now, if the US attacks Iran, then I hope the entire Bush administration is taken out of office in handcuffs. I could go on and on about that topic, but will spare you …



posted on Mar, 11 2006 @ 11:06 PM
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Doesn't the threat of deterrence require that you would actually respond to an attack with such overwhelming response that it would make the initial attack so counterproductive that it is never launched in the first place?

If you have a weapon that you will never use under ANY circumstances and your foes know that, what use are those weapons. I am sure that the U.S. has contingency plans for a whole host of potential situations, not just Iran.

That being said, it is not a bad idea to let the Iranian or North Korean regimes know that if they export any of their nuclear know how and something very bad occurs somewhere, there would be grave consequences for any nation that assisted in said venture. If you carry a big stick, you must be prepared to use it in certain situations.



posted on Mar, 12 2006 @ 02:10 AM
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You are obligated to disobey illegal orders, to the extent that that they are actually illegal.

A. "International law" is just a network of treaties. Treaties are only as good as the situations which produce them. If you really want to respect all treaties as international law, Russia has to give Germany a large part of their territory. They signed the treaty of Brest-Litovsk when they dropped out of WWI. Article 27 of the Treaty of Versailles specifies Germany's borders with the surrounding nations, but does not explicitly strip Germany of ownership of Russian concessions. Then the Treaty of Rapallo nullified Versailles. Therefore, if you accept treaties as binding international law, not just temporary non-binding attempts to mutually negotiate difficult situations for as long as the conditions necessitating the treaty exist, then you have to concede that the Baltic states and Ukraine belong to Russia and can have no independence. The disollusion of the USSR wouldn't hold up because they were never sovreign.

B. National laws could be argued against by hyper-technical sophistry, but there is little escaping the conclusion that national laws bind national entities, therefore the only orders which are certainly illegal are those which violate national laws.

Those points considered, the scope of what actually constitutes an illegal order is quite limited. International law is merely a warning that if you lose you will be punished harshly. It's no more legal than the traditional rules of seige warfare which held that if a fortress did not surrender, neither the defenders nor the citizens within need be shown mercy once the beseiging force has prevailed.

The order to launch nuclear weapons cannot seriously be regarded as illegal under present laws, except by the constitutional argument that I shall now make.

The fundemental problem here is that executive power to launch nuclear weapons is incompatible with democracy and our constitution.

Only congress has the power to declare war, or grant [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Letter_of_marque]letters of marque or reprisal..

Obviously there is no time for congress to declare war while a nuclear attack is underway, so that leaves letters of marque and reprisal, traditionally considered vestiges of the age of piracy.

A letter of marque is an authorization by congress for an entity to carry out explicitly stated acts of hostility under the soveriegn authority of the United States, thus keeping the individual from being branded a pirate.

Therefore, Congress can theoretically grant the president conditional letters of marque authorizing action in the event that certain events should occur, and this is how America's nuclear weapons should be governed.

Such a letter might grant the authority to use nuclear weapons against all nations using them against the United States. This preserves our deterrence and yet reserves the power to make a non-retaliatory strike for Congress, in compliance with our constitution. If you wanted to go MAD, they could even authorize the president to destroy the Earth if America is nuked, though I do not advise it.

So, ironically, ANY order to use nuclear weapons, even as a retaliation, is technically illegal in the United States at present, and with proper adjustment, the use of them in any role but retaliatory would be illegal.

If the Joint Chiefs obeyed an order to launch, especially in a non-retaliatory capacity, they could probably be charged, although without an impeachment that would really be a moot point.

In the end, we run into the simplicity argument. The President and his agents can, in practice, do anything they want, up to and including eating the constitution for breakfast and then launching nuclear weapons, unless either an impeachment or a revolution will result, and in the case of nuclear war, even that is a moot point.

Final answer: War is not democratic, it is tyrannical by its very nature- doubly so for nuclear war. Just one of many reasons that perfect democracy is as doomed as perfect communism. Sucks, don't it?



posted on Mar, 12 2006 @ 07:40 PM
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From the original article

A natural answer is that any order that could lead with reasonable probability to the use of nuclear weapons should be disobeyed. Here it becomes important to consider the context: there is a set of conditions in place that makes the use of nuclear weapons highly likely if a military confrontation with Iran erupts [1], [2], [3]. Given those conditions, it can be argued that any order involving an attack on Iran, even with conventional weapons, is immoral because it is likely to lead to the use of nuclear weapons, and, that any order concerning deployment of tactical nuclear weapons [.pdf] in the Persian Gulf region is illegal and immoral because it makes preparations for the purpose of committing an illegal and immoral act. The aircraft pilot who actually pushes the bomb-release button that drops the B61-11 on an Iranian facility is not the only one who will have obeyed illegal and immoral orders.


I don't know about you guys but when i think about all the people in Iran sitting idle when they know full well that their leader could start a nuclear incident; I say incident, because it could i would be over in a flash, then maybe they deserve what they get.

It's kind of like the police here, they really can't do anything for a stalking victim until she is raped.

If Iran says they are going to bomb us, and the threat is real, i say let them have it.



posted on Mar, 12 2006 @ 08:20 PM
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Originally posted by landshark

[1] I don't know about you guys but when i think about all the people in Iran sitting idle when they know full well that their leader could start a nuclear incident; I say incident, because it could i would be over in a flash, then maybe they deserve what they get.

It's kind of like the police here, they really can't do anything for a stalking victim until she is raped.

[2] If Iran says they are going to bomb us, and the threat is real, i say let them have it.


1. You have to remember that Iran is not exactly in the mainstream. Yes, there are people capable of stopping nuclear advances there, but the majority are just simple people living simple lives who have no way of controlling what their government does.

Sounds familiar, yes?

2. I do not think it is reasonable to blame an entire population for the actions of a select few individuals or groups.



posted on Mar, 12 2006 @ 08:43 PM
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Now, it’s quite possible to be in complete accordance with military code/law and also in violation of international law and the Geneva Convention. In this case, it’s kinda like being on a one way street and getting run over in both directions.


Correct me if I’m wrong but aren't US soldiers that operate on US soil immune to prosecution by an international court? I believe the US has fought tooth an nail to make sure that if any US solder is going to be tried, it will be done by us.



posted on Mar, 12 2006 @ 08:56 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
Dick Cheney is not authorized to launch a nuclear attack unless the president is incapacitated and he takes over. The president is the only one that can authorize the use of nuclear weapons, so whether Cheney wants to or not is irrelevant.


Its not irrelevant when the president is a braindead puppet who does whatever Dick Cheney tells him to do.

Bush is not smart enough to pull off theammoral corruptive policies we have been pursing by himself.

He just does what Mr Dick tells him to do.



posted on Mar, 12 2006 @ 11:06 PM
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Also remember that Cheney was in a bunker on the morning of 9/11, allegedly with communications to all relevant agencies and military organizations. Remember that one aid? "Does the order still stand, sir?" This is while Bush was perfectly capable, sitting around reading to elementary school kids while the Secret Service did absolutely nothing to get him out of there. This dude doesn't care about the constitutionality of his behaviors. I doubt anyone in the Bush Admin does.

And btw Cheney's "office" has no authority whatsoever in any government matter but what Cheney himself does in their interests from his constitutional powers (or what powers he grants himself), and I seriously doubt it's the tail wagging the dog on that one. Cheney's office effectively means Cheney. This is moreso than people saying "White House" when they mean Bush, because at least other important officials are in the White House. Making an argument out of "Cheney" vs. "Cheney's office" is tedious and ignorant.

[edit on 12-3-2006 by bsbray11]



posted on Mar, 12 2006 @ 11:39 PM
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The Vagabond,
First, I'd like to mention that was an extremely well thought out post yeilding introspective that obviously transcends some of the posters below you who skipped over it like it wasn't even there.
God I hate when people here do that! But hey, ain't no question in my mind why the line below your name glows redder than a hot tamale.


Originally posted by The Vagabond
B. National laws could be argued against by hyper-technical sophistry, but there is little escaping the conclusion that national laws bind national entities, therefore the only orders which are certainly illegal are those which violate national laws.


So I have a question for you and that is, how then in the trials at Nuremberg could it be justified that so many were convicted and sent to death, when at the time they commited the crimes it would have been considered "legal" in Germany for them to commit those heinous acts?

[edit on 12-3-2006 by TrueAmerican]



posted on Mar, 13 2006 @ 01:15 AM
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Originally posted by TrueAmerican

Originally posted by The Vagabond
B. National laws could be argued against by hyper-technical sophistry, but there is little escaping the conclusion that national laws bind national entities, therefore the only orders which are certainly illegal are those which violate national laws.


So I have a question for you and that is, how then in the trials at Nuremberg could it be justified that so many were convicted and sent to death, when at the time they commited the crimes it would have been considered "legal" in Germany for them to commit those heinous acts?


For the exact same reason that American generals would have been executed if we had lost: he who wins the war makes the rules. As I said, war is not democratic.

My argument is essentially that the treaties which comprise international law are merely a warning in advance of what will be forced upon you if you start a war and lose it, because they cannot be enforced without first defeating the belligerent and they are no easier to enforce on a vanquished enemy than arbitrary terms of surrender. International law is a futile pretense of civilization.

National law can be enforced even if a country doesn't lose the war though, assuming that the people command the political or if necessary revolutionary force necessary to enforce national law upon their government, which makes it only slightly more binding than international law.

Or think of it this way: who sets the laws that God must follow? Only God, correct? Why can't humans make laws for God to follow? We outnumber him, we have rights too. He's bigger than us though. We can't enforce our laws on him. Unless someone can and will defeat you, you are bound only by your own virtue.

Ultimately all law boils down to force. If outlaws were in the majority they'd outlaw goodness and hang the righteous. I know it's a very odd and amoral (not to be confused with immoral) point of view, but I hope I have explained it clearly.

Thank you for the very kind words as well. I do enjoy my red bar- it's quite pretty and i polish it often. I am however quite fortunate that moderators can't give "boos" when you're wrong, because I'd have my share of those as well. (watch, somebody will come along and warn me just for the heck of it and say "boo!")



posted on Mar, 13 2006 @ 02:33 AM
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Originally posted by The Vagabond
For the exact same reason that American generals would have been executed if we had lost: he who wins the war makes the rules. As I said, war is not democratic.


Would it have really been for the same reason? I mean, if Germany had won the war, would they have been able to bring similar charges for the exact same crimes against the Allies? I mean it's not like we slaughtered millions of Jews in the process mercilessly; we were merely combatting them in defensive capacity against an invading force. Sure I imagine there would be the exception where some comitted "uneccessary" acts of violence against some Germans when instead they could have been taken prisoner, but on the overall, I am not sure I quite see how your reasoning applies here. But that's probably because I have no where near the understanding of these things that you obviously do. I am just trying to understand, and don't mean that in any negative way.


My argument is essentially that the treaties which comprise international law are merely a warning in advance of what will be forced upon you if you start a war and lose it, because they cannot be enforced without first defeating the belligerent and they are no easier to enforce on a vanquished enemy than arbitrary terms of surrender. International law is a futile pretense of civilization.


I think international law may be as futile as you say, all though I think that it may stem as much from the sheer differences in cultural values as it does from what you are saying. Or are we actually saying the same thing?

Case in point: Iran and Islam vs Christianity. As the title of this thread would indicate, our moral and cultural values say that nuking Iran would be the wrong thing to do and illegal if ordered, hence that anyone involved should actually disobey the orders- from commanders all the way down to proliferators. And so if we were to do such a thing, those involved should be ultimately held to our own internal sense of right and wrong, and should pay the appropriate penalties of such actions according to how WE view the legitimacy of such action. In a perfect world, this would be whether we win or lose... But of course if we lost, I don't think they'd have to worry bout it too much...


National law can be enforced even if a country doesn't lose the war though, assuming that the people command the political or if necessary revolutionary force necessary to enforce national law upon their government, which makes it only slightly more binding than international law.


Ahh, great point and key point. Now please explain to me how it is that the torture that has occured recently at the hands of our military can stand on any legal or moral grounds, and how these people are not held accountable to our very own sense of moral right and wrong. Oops, obviously I need to correct that and say "MY sense," because clearly many up there don't share my views. Excuse me. I thought this was America and not Nazi Germany, but hey, I am wrong a lot so....


...Unless someone can and will defeat you, you are bound only by your own virtue.


Yes, and I suppose if the Muslim world ultimately had its way with us (and due to declining fertility and population statistics this could actually happen), does not the Koran say to "kill or enslave all infidels?" The tides of THEIR virtues most definately would be upon us. And in their case, it is all who are not Muslim who will suffer. And as we have seen, these people have no problem with torture. Still, that doesn't mean that it should be right in our minds to do the same to them.


Ultimately all law boils down to force. If outlaws were in the majority they'd outlaw goodness and hang the righteous. I know it's a very odd and amoral (not to be confused with immoral) point of view, but I hope I have explained it clearly.


You probably have explained it clearly Vagabond, it's just that hey, it's fun to discuss.



Thank you for the very kind words as well. I do enjoy my red bar- it's quite pretty and i polish it often. I am however quite fortunate that moderators can't give "boos" when you're wrong, because I'd have my share of those as well. (watch, somebody will come along and warn me just for the heck of it and say "boo!")


You are quite welcome, and may Prince offer you a ride in his little red corvette. Careful with the polishing cloth though, he doesn't take well to scratches. I just wish some of these guys would be a little more ingratiating when an intellectual powerhouse like you enters their thread. They don't realize how lucky they are that you even give them the time of day.



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