Originally Posted by ckblv
Do you REALLy believe that some fundamentalist Christians have terrorist training camps, want to fly jets into building, have put out edicts commanding their members to kill anyone not Christian? Are you REALLY saying that Z?
Do I really believe that some Fundamentalists also won't be happy until the whole world is converted to their brand of religion, and that they train their children to use weapons and form 'militias'... why yes, yes, I do. I've seen them. I am REALLY saying that. If you read my post, I also said that we should be investigating the cultural, economic, and historical reasons why their particular brand of fundamentalism has reached the point of having terrorist training camps, suicide bombers, etc. Though, things like this
come to mind. What I did not say, is that we also have those things in America.
I have, however, heard a couple of different people say that they joined the military because of racist and bigoted desire to kill Islamic people, and the mindset isn't much different. And to clarify, no, I do not believe that is why 99.9% of the military have joined. My point is that we have extremist nutjobs here too.
Originally Posted by coaster
Diplomacy accomplishes very little. Consider Jimmy Carter's diplomatic triumph getting Sadat and Begin to shake hands on the Camp David Peace accord. That was in 1978. Almost 30 years ago, and what's been achieved vis a vis Israel and the Arab states? They're still at each other's throats. How about Chamberlain's diplomacy with Nazi Germany? Did that prevent WW II? Teddy Roosevelt's idea of diplomacy is the only diplomacy that works: "Speak softly and carry a big stick...."
Downsizing our "big stick" is not a good idea. It never has been a good idea. Again, look at history and at the times we've downsized our military which led to being unprepared for and taken by surprise at a considerable disadvantage in the next war. Go all the way back to President Jefferson, who was the first to make that mistake. The British burned Washington. Fast forward to Pearl Harbor. Then up to the near past with Jimmy Carter and Desert One. We need a strong military and volunteers aren't producing enough recruits.
The EU is backed up by NATO, which is mostly the U.S. military. Incidentally, several EU countries have mandatory military service.
I never said we should downsize the military we have, I just said we shouldn't draft to make it even bigger and that it is possible for countries to have little active military and are fine. We probably wouldn't be able to do that, no, and I never said we should. And I know we back up the fighting forces of the EU. My point was that much of the relationship there is diplomatic precisely to prevent wars.
It's easy to come up with examples of how diplomacy can fail. It's hard to come up with examples of when it works, because it works on an everyday basis and nobody dies. Shall I mention the Cold War? The Cuban Missile Crisis? Any number of other times when people don't go to war? It works more often than it doesn't, but it fails to make the front page.
The anti-confrontation attitude that developed after the first World War, which resulted in everyone allowing Hitler to get as far as he did, is more an example of what happens when countries that have barely recovered from a war are faced with another war. It's not failed diplomacy, it's a failure to do much of anything. In a situation like that, no, I would not say that military action should not be considered.