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Crossing Moral Boundaries on ATS : Promoting and Excusing Murder, Torture and War Crimes

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posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 12:18 PM
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reply to post by SaviorComplex
 


I completely agree - debate about the laws pertaining to murder, torture or even the legalities of the involvement in certain conflicts is a good thing, as is debate about the moral and ethical considerations.

I can see where the OP is coming from, but I would only be repeating that which has been said many times already when I disagree with certain aspects of the OP.

From a personal point of view, when I see people post things like "they deserved it" or "they should all die" etc I try not to get involved - OK, I'm not always successfull, and have been known to bare my fangs as it were, but I see that as a personal failing.
I am, in effect, validating what I see as a ridiculous statement by answering it.

I have my own moral and ethical views, but I try not to force them onto others - why should I? Who's to say my views are any better or any more valid than the next persons?

I find some points of view (especially the bloodthirsty ones as I see them) repugnant, but at the same time, I respect peoples right to hold them.

None of us here are the thought police.

None of us are morally or ethically perfect.

None of us have the right to call for the silencing of an opinion we dislike, however extreme we might find it, as long as that opinion is within the T&C.




posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 12:20 PM
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reply to post by NewWorldOver
 


Actually, why dont you go open a proper and official thread on this...not in "ATS Business" but in a proper Political or Conspiracy Forum. It could be an interesting discussion.

Interesting because this is not only a question of ATS-Policy, its a question of international policy and worldwide debate.



posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 12:25 PM
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Originally posted by NewWorldOver
Who's censoring now?

Sad.


Certainly not me. In fact, no reasonable person could take my words as a call for censorship. I explicity said I want a debate, there is no other way to interprete it.

What is sad about this is that someone who is whining about personal attacks, that people are not on topic, frequently engages in such behavior, and continues to twist people's words.

Sad indeed.



posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 12:27 PM
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Yes it seems the topic is headed into familiar territory, torture and casualties in war.

I only offered the opinion that endorsing torture is endorsing an illegal sentiment... It's not really an 'opinion' it continues to be international law... torture is illegal.

However saying that a little girl deserved to die because she was in the wrong place at the wrong time... I guess that is a moral issue and it's wrong to mix the two.

I thought T&C would prohibit (or discourage) pro-torture sentiment but I definitely did NOT intend it to 'censor' anything. That kind of accusation seemed reactionary at best....



posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 12:31 PM
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reply to post by NewWorldOver
 


Another constructive way to get to the depth of this is to pick someone pro-military and carry out a challenge-match in the ATS-Debate Forum.

If its really your desire to get to the bottom of this, that would be a way to go.



posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by NewWorldOver
Yes it seems the topic is headed into familiar territory, torture and casualties in war. I only offered the opinion that endorsing torture is endorsing an illegal sentiment... It's not really an 'opinion' it continues to be international law... torture is illegal.


You still fail to understand; they are not debating whether certain actions are illegal. No one is going to disagree that murder or torture are illegal. What they are debating is whether certain things rise to the level of said crimes. This debate is not synonymous with an endorsement or excuse of those crimes.

You are debating this based on a false dichotomy.



posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 02:51 PM
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Originally posted by NewWorldOver
Yes it seems the topic is headed into familiar territory, torture and casualties in war.

I only offered the opinion that endorsing torture is endorsing an illegal sentiment... It's not really an 'opinion' it continues to be international law... torture is illegal.

However saying that a little girl deserved to die because she was in the wrong place at the wrong time... I guess that is a moral issue and it's wrong to mix the two.

I thought T&C would prohibit (or discourage) pro-torture sentiment but I definitely did NOT intend it to 'censor' anything. That kind of accusation seemed reactionary at best....

To say that torture should be legal is not urging people to break the law, it is saying that the law should be changed. Given the T+C it should be taken as given that no one is advocating breaking the law, unless they say so pretty explicitly. So what you characterize as pro-torture-sentiment might equally well be characterized as poorly-expressed-pro-discussing-(changing the torture law)-sentiment.
To say that something is against international law does not mean that we need to avert our eyes and walk backwards out of the sanctuary.
If it should be against the law to discuss changing the law, or rather, if it promotes crimes to discuss changing the law...good luck under that regime.



posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 03:45 PM
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Calls for genocide and mass murder, particularly against Muslims and especially Iranians, have become almost routine on ATS lately. And while racist language seems to be against the T&C, calls for genocide apparently are not.

So I have adopted the stance that those who advocate killing be reminded that they can be killed themselves.

Not pretty, but it's necessary.



posted on Mar, 14 2008 @ 04:35 PM
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reply to post by TheWalkingFox
 


Replying in that fashion works as well as any profanity filled post will. In fact that hypothetical reply won't get deleted. The profanity filled one will. So which is better?

Rude doesn't equate to truth, or "keeping it real". It's just rude.



posted on Mar, 15 2008 @ 08:54 AM
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reply to post by NewWorldOver
 


I have been trying to think of a way to communicate with you so we could connect, and not just see each other as "the other side".

For me, just me and my opinion, I don't see my defense of the military as "pro-government". I am quite the opposite. I am as far from pro-government as you can get - truly. I am pro-military-member.

This is an important, critical distinction. I spent six years in the U.S. military as a Crew Chief on Blackhawks. Alpha models at first, and later Limas. I flew hundreds of hours in very close, personal proximity to people from all over the country. I personally knew and worked with all races, ethnicities, creeds, prior socio-economic situations, religious beliefs (yes Muslims) and any other permutation I may have forgotten.

There was no grand, over-riding “hive mind” of thought. The opinions concerning politics, religion, world events and local events were varied and robust. In the military you spend a lot of time doing – frankly – nothing. The common catch phrase was “hurry up and wait”. Anyone who has served, in any military, knows this saying. Meaning; we had a lot of time to sit, talk, share ideas, argue, debate, talk about women, our families, aspirations, dreams, etc. I never, ever, met someone who I would describe as wanting to hurt an innocent. I never, honestly, met a single solider who wanted to deploy in the hopes of killing someone. The soldiers I knew were every day people who chose to join for a variety of reasons. It might have been college education money, a desire to give something back to their country, someone looking for direction, a life-long desire to serve in the military, or a combination of all of the above. The people I served with were good, honest, decent people. Not chimps. Not blood thirsty killers. Not war mongers. Not people who reviled in the idea they might be put in a situation where they are forced into the horrible decision of risking their life in a combat zone where every move, every tactical decision, every split-second life-or-death judgment made on the ground, in the moment would be nit picked, discussed, judged and the worst immediately thought of. The soldiers I served with were mothers, fathers, daughters and sons. They had families they loved and who loved them. They never, ever would relish or hope for the kind of situation where they may be forced to shoot a child. Someone’s daughter.

Can you step back and realize that the soldier who shot this child (if it happened at all) will forever be haunted by his or her decision? Do you realize no solider relishes the idea of killing an innocent? What kind of situation would exist that would make shooting a child the right choice? Can you imagine a scenario where that might be a good choice? I know you can’t but in war, sometimes it is the right choice. The enemy has used women, children, the elderly and those mentally retarded as fighting tools. You may not like to believe that, but it’s true. It’s easy to sit behind a computer screen and decry the actions of those put in situations that require them to make a decision that none of us would want to face. I know from your position, safe at home, with time to dissect, analyze, second-guess, re-think, look at all angles from the comfort of your home you probably can’t think of a single reason why a solider would shoot a little girl. You would also be wrong.

You’re wrong because your belief comes from a place where you cant imagine yourself ever doing something like that. Here’s the thing: you absolutely would. Placed in that situation, far from home, family, loved ones, your life aspirations, devoid of sleep for days at the time, in an environment in which you or your friends could die at any moment from any number of horrible causes, in a horrible, painful fashion, exhausted beyond a level you can imagine as you read this, facing an enemy that does not make moral distinctions between innocents and combatants, is willing to blow their own children up and are faced with a split second decision where your very own life and the life of your friends is literally depending on you to make the right assessment………you would have shot her too. You’ll get very angry at me for saying that but, it’s absolutely true. The bottom line: you’re not going to die, or allow your buddies to die when push comes to shove.

I can imagine, easily, a scenario where this little girl was being used as a look out, or a spotter. It absolutely happens. You have the luxury of time, space, perspective, hind-sight and safety. Soldiers do not. If you’re wrong, you can take another sip of your coffee and reflect. If soldiers are wrong, when faced with a situation like this, they die.

People with your political thinking tend to group-think the military. That is, because of a lack of understanding or personal experience, you view the military as jack-booted thugs who autonomously carry out any order. My opinion is you see them as a mindless tool of political parties. You tend to paint the military with a very wide, very incorrect brush.

Therein lies the rub.

I have no quibble with your personal, political beliefs. Really. I can think of no nice, un-confrontational way to say the following: I do have a real, personal issue with you when you make wide-sweeping judgments on things you, basically, have no understanding of. IMO, that is where you’re finding rapid, strong condemnation from other posters on subjects like this. Your political beliefs, and many others like you, are so hard over that you make vast, incorrect generalizations about people that you have an axe to grind with.

I have so much to say and I am not at all trying to attack you, although I am fairly confident that’s exactly what you’ll see out of my post.

I’m trying to give you a fresh perspective and help you realize there may be other possibilities.


[edit on 15-3-2008 by SlightlyAbovePar]



posted on Mar, 15 2008 @ 11:40 AM
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Originally posted by SlightlyAbovePar
I have no quibble with your personal, political beliefs. Really. I can think of no nice, un-confrontational way to say the following: I do have a real, personal issue with you when you make wide-sweeping judgments on things you, basically, have no understanding of.


Well you made a great post.

I don't make wide sweeping judgements. I created a thread called 'pro-government pro-military members: please zip the lips'

The topic of that thread was that all the military and government members were taking political issues PERSONALLY.

When a story arises about one soldier killing an innocent on mistake, we are not judging ALL SOLDIERS.

Never the less, it is wrong to ACCUSE THE VICTIM of being a suicide bomber, of being a tool for insurgents, of being 'suspicious'... the victim hereself was hiding from gunfire. But you realize that the people who blamed the victim were all rabid pro-war pro-military posters... they are the same people excusing torture and other war crimes with flimsy logic.

A sane and morally sound military member does not have to defend himself for the actions of other soldiers... yourself and members like yourself demonstrate far more reasonable sentiments then the people I am adressing in this thread.

Thanks for input.



posted on Mar, 15 2008 @ 03:40 PM
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reply to post by NewWorldOver
 


You're very welcome and I know it must have taken some calm breathing (said tounge-in-cheek) techniques not to get really angry with me.

I appreciate your views and positions and hope to talk about things with you in the future.



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