Comments: Sorry!

From the linked article from WSJ.......

""Every Afghan civilian death diminishes our cause," Gen. Petraeus said in the August directive. "If we use excessive force or operate contrary to our counterinsurgency principles, tactical victories may prove to be strategic setbacks."

What is our cause? Or rather What is Gen. Petraeus's cause? To make horrendous accusations against the victims? He makes me sick. The wars make me sick. And if he is planning on leaving, why does not he leave today? IF and that is a big if, he is really sorry.

"Petraeus Accuses Afghan Parents of Burning Kids to Make US Look Bad"


Posted by Rupa Shah at March 3, 2011 10:32 AM

Nothing to see here. Remember, they hate us for our freedoms.

Posted by par4 at March 3, 2011 12:25 PM

Meanwhile, here is a nice scene

Posted by db at March 3, 2011 01:00 PM

Its JUST policy, something U&I PAY for, rough on the kids though. WE buy the bombs, the planes, the pilots, the Afghan government, and when the PRICE is agreed upon, WE'll buy the parents. KEEP PAYING, KEEP PLAYING.

Posted by Mike Meyer at March 3, 2011 01:55 PM

Thank you for the link.
I am shocked but on second thought, I am really not. Saddened...... the thought of what this country is supposed to be all about and in which direction it should be going but what it is turning out to be and where it is heading.

Posted by Rupa Shah at March 3, 2011 02:22 PM

I hope you are not equating Petraeus with KSM. If you are then you're like someone who screams "Godwin's Law" at even legitimate discussions of the Nazis.

Aside from the fact that the Iraq and Afghan war have probably killed ten digits of children whereas I don't know that even a single one died in the attack on the twin towers, the point here is that the form of argument made can be made legitimately and it can be made illegitimately, no different from comparing people to Nazis.

There is a legitimate argument for killing children (or for that matter anyone) and being sorry about it and that is that inaction is going to cause even more death and suffering. You surely know all this from the Good War theory, and from concepts of self-defence or the defence of others.

KSM is using the argument legitimately because he can make the case that his attack was necessary to try and bring about the end to the on-going genocide in Iraq and Palestine where hundreds of kids die on an almost daily basis. Within his limited ability KSM can certainly say he minimised civilian casualties.

Petraeus is bullshitting. There's no justifying good result which necessitates his killing of children. It's even a war crime in his case -- which is to say -- even if you forget that his war is a criminal one to begin with and pretend he has a legitimate reason for being in Afghanistan to begin with, his actions are still "war" crimes because he could achieve his goals EASILY in ways that would result in fewer civilian casualties.

If you don't think there's EVER a reason for justifying killing kids then you're either being over emotional or you're a total pacifist.

For KSM the equation is, "is one American kid worth a million Muslim kids?"

For Petraeus it is, "are a hundred Afghan kids' lives worth the inconvenience and expense of dispatching foot soldiers to be sure of who I am killing instead of just bombing with a predator?"

Posted by DavidByron at March 3, 2011 02:59 PM

oops - *seven* digits of children

Posted by DavidByron at March 3, 2011 03:00 PM

He will make a fine president.

Posted by Rob Payne at March 3, 2011 03:31 PM

The best thing Wikileaks has done was to post the "Collateral Murder" video, which should have prompted some serious soul-searching in the US military about rules of engagement. Aircrews should NEVER be given weapons release authority without US troops in immediate visual contact, preferrably taking fire. That this might put US troops in danger is a cost of doing business. Welcome to 4GW. One dead civilian against a multitude of dead insurgents is a net loss for the US.

Posted by Ralph Hitchens at March 3, 2011 03:35 PM

There is an underlying assumption that 'justification' = 'makes it right'. Sometimes there is no good choice. There is no way to know the long-term effects of any choice, much less an overtly violent choice. The right thing to do is to avoid being in a situation where the choice is between killing a few non-combatants and killing a few more non-combatants. Yes, I recognize that means putting non-violence first, and thus not a "realistic" option.

Posted by murfyn at March 3, 2011 04:53 PM

Man, db, that video is pretty upsetting. The real disconnect between the rhetoric being used and the reality of the situation is scary - like, Kristallnacht scary, Godwin's law be damned.

Posted by saurabh at March 3, 2011 06:28 PM

Godwin himself says Godwin's law is not meant to negate Nazi references universally, but to maximize their proper use by eliminating frivilous use.

David Byron is correct, though I don't think Jonathan was necessarily implying that Petraeus was directly morally equivalent to KSM. Petraeus, this administration, and the previous one are made up of monsters, from a moral standpoint. Collateral Murder pretty much ended any notion that they weren't for any sane holdouts.

I disagree with DavidByron here:

For KSM the equation is, "is one American kid worth a million Muslim kids?"

For Petraeus it is, "are a hundred Afghan kids' lives worth the inconvenience and expense of dispatching foot soldiers to be sure of who I am killing instead of just bombing with a predator?"

This suggests Petraeus murders children because the alternatives are more expensive. Not so. Petraeus murders children because he is using terror as a weapon. The point of the murders is to murder. It's not a bug, it's a feature. The chaos and bloodshed and -- most importantly -- factionalization is its own reward, since any sane and organized community would throw the U.S. out of the region. The calculation is simple: there is no calculation.

Similarly, rape and torture are their own rewards, too. No justification is involved; the killing proves itself. We have no problem discerning this mindset for other monsters throughout history and the present day; it is troubling that people suddenly stumble into error and fail to recognize it when it happens in the U.S.

Posted by No One of Consequence at March 4, 2011 02:25 AM

At least he didn't say "oops". The pilots, however, are now our collective problem. It'll be great integrating these guys back into "society".

Posted by troutsky at March 4, 2011 12:18 PM

The society deserves them.

Posted by NomadUK at March 4, 2011 12:44 PM

...sorry is the Kool-Aid of human emotions.

the following was posted at Fafblog!, attributed to Yankee magazine

Kool-Aid Pie

A little 9-year-old girl gave me this recipe. It tastes great and is very easy to make. And you can use any flavor Kool-Aid you like.

* 1 ready-made graham cracker pie crust
* 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
* 1 envelope Kool-Aid (any flavor)
* 1 small tub Cool Whip, thawed

Mix all ingredients together until thoroughly combined. Pour into crust and refrigerate at least one hour before serving.

An anonymous reviewer says, "I have tried this recipe on several occasions and everybody loved it."

Posted by mistah 'MICFiC' charley, ph.d. at March 4, 2011 02:27 PM

Thanks to david byron for that link.

Posted by N E at March 5, 2011 02:00 PM

And I agree with NomadUK, who agrees with William Money.

Posted by N E at March 5, 2011 10:24 PM