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Osama Bin Laden is Dead.


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#121 Sirisian   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1689

Posted 02 May 2011 - 11:42 PM

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#122 trzy   Members   -  Reputation: 100

Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:23 AM

Again, which resolution gave permission to carry out an invasion?

Permission is not necessary to combat national security threats. War is the breakdown of law. No one can grant permission, by definition.

Then why did the US ask the UN for permission first, before being knocked back and then pulling the "imminent threat" card and going it alone?


Political face-saving, obviously. It's a matter of protocol, that's all. Are we still talking about Afghanistan?

Sorry, but there's a lot of laws, treaties and conventions regarding war. That statement is so unfounded that it beggars belief that someone would present it seriously. There's no way to even have a discussion if you're not grounded in reality...


The application of international law is purely discretionary, thanks to national sovereignty and the lack of an enforcer.

Afghanistan asked for proof that they were a threat, or in any way connected to the 9/11 terrorism, and no proof was given.
While we're at it, can you dig up a source for the claim that Bin Laden has admitted to planning 9/11?


Osama took credit in a 2004 audio tape. There was other evidence linking Bin Laden to the organization and financing of the effort. You may as well question how they linked KSM to it. Admissions mean little either way. If the United States wanted a scapegoat, they would've picked someone else -- someone they could have easily captured or killed. Bin Laden wasn't taking extraordinary measures to hide from US intelligence for no reason. Neither were his Pakistani protectors.

It's interesting to see who you're willing to give the benefit of the doubt here.
----Bart

#123 trzy   Members   -  Reputation: 100

Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:29 AM

It holds plenty of water. Our medical care is great. Awesome. There are tons of people who put off going to the doctor because they can't afford it, and then they have much worse conditions that finally force them in, which are more expensive to treat and harder to recover from well. If you present to the hospital, they can't turn you away, so they treat you and you rack up a huge bill. A hospital room is thousands of dollars per day, and that's assuming that you never see a doctor, need any treatment or medicine, or follow-up care. So you can get awesome treatment, on credit, and then be in debt for the rest of your life. That's not a great system, even if we have great doctors and medical technology. And again, given that concern, many people put off going to the hospital.


Life expectancy factors all of this into account, and the US may actually be leading there.

Does the U.S. Lead in Life Expectancy?

I pretty much agree with the rest of your post. But the point made above is key.

And why does everyone in these debates have such a hard-on for the European system? The UK system is not the shining example. That's why I mention Japan, and all that you came up with was that some Japanese doctors suck and/or are shy, conveniently ignoring the better life expectancies and similar (if not better) health outcomes. And by the way, Japan doesn't have socialized medicine in the way that the UK does. So your apparent position, that American can choose between its current system or a Western European system is a false dichotomy. There are other choices, which work better and for less money.


I don't know enough about Japan's system to comment any more. All I'll share is that in my limited experience, things are not necessarily as they may seem in Japan. The Japanese are especially shy about reporting things that reflect badly on their welfare state. And let's not forget their crushing debt burden. Maybe all is not well in Japan.
----Bart

#124 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 28667

Posted 03 May 2011 - 12:50 AM

Osama took credit in a 2004 audio tape. There was other evidence linking Bin Laden to the organization and financing of the effort.
It's interesting to see who you're willing to give the benefit of the doubt here.

Given that "it's all over" and he's been summarily executed, I'm just interested to see the proof. It's common knowledge he's admitted to it, but from some quick googling I could only find transcripts containing a denial of responsibility and others containing both condemnation and appreciation - he seems to be very careful with his words. For 'common knowledge', my google-fu is proving weak.

Any good links would be appreciated... Do you have one for that audio tape?


As for giving people the benefit of the doubt - that goes for the US govt too. After all the lies they've been caught telling, you can't really have 100% faith in their announcements either. Nothing wrong with being sceptical.


Regarding KSM, didn't they torture him until he confessed to being the mastermind behind every terror attack ever?

#125 NotYourAverageUser   Members   -  Reputation: 494

Posted 03 May 2011 - 06:41 AM

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Pictures like this do a great job of strengthening national stereotypes. Street-parties, waving flags and chanting "USA. USA. USA" because someone was assassinated. It's more weird than anything else.



Big difference between these celebrations and world wide celebrations when the WTC went down. While I do not think it was *right* or *smart* for these KIDS (who were probably about 10 years old when 9/11 happened) to be dancing and celebrating in the streets - they are celebrating the death of a mastermind terrorists. They are not burning flags, they are not celebrating the death of thousands of innocents. The specific event that they are celebrating is deserving of some acknowledgement.

My specific reaction was, "About time we got him. Wish it had been quicker and cheaper (in terms of $$$ and lives). Well, in reality, I don't think it really *changes* anything. The same people that wanted to hurt us before - still want to hurt us. I don't think there are really many more because of his death that want to hurt us."

I think the acting of this kids is more likely to bring bad sentiments towards the US than the actions that the US took the other day.

Regardless, if we have been isolationists for the last 200 years - the same people that hate us for meddling in foreign affairs would hate us for ignoring their calls for help.



#126 SteveDeFacto   Banned   -  Reputation: 109

Posted 03 May 2011 - 07:31 AM

Yay we killed a man and his family! Lets party! Sure Osama bin Laden ordered the death of thousands of Americans but how is that any different than the president of the US ordering the death of thousands of Japanese, Iraqis or Libyans? If only the entire world could be as one nation people would finally see how wrong their way of thinking is...

#127 Khaiy   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 1342

Posted 03 May 2011 - 07:45 AM

Life expectancy factors all of this into account, and the US may actually be leading there.

Does the U.S. Lead in Life Expectancy?

I pretty much agree with the rest of your post. But the point made above is key.


It might be key if you hadn't trotted out things like cancer survivorship rates, or if that regression were more definitive. But it seems that we agree that health outcomes aren't the only significant factor, so we can probably move on.

I don't know enough about Japan's system to comment any more. All I'll share is that in my limited experience, things are not necessarily as they may seem in Japan. The Japanese are especially shy about reporting things that reflect badly on their welfare state. And let's not forget their crushing debt burden. Maybe all is not well in Japan.


It's not a welfare system for health care that provides the flexibility. It's somewhat privatized, although insurance companies are legally required to be non-profit organizations, and the government does provide a single-payer plan. Hospitals are required to be non-profit as well, and must be run by physicians. Many people choose not to go with health insurance at all, in fact (though legally they are supposed to). The government aggressively regulates the price of medical procedures, which keeps the cost of most routine medical services extremely low, so while it's still a significant expenditure on the national level it's far less expense per patient than in the US (even with the government picking up ~70% of the tab in many situations).

Insurance is effective for catastrophic issues and so forth, but the non-profit structure removes the incentive to jack up rates. Not to mention that Japanese health insurance companies (like most health insurance companies worldwide) are far more efficient per dollar than US companies.

Japan does indeed have problems. As I noted above, doctors there are not pleased with their pay, especially because lower income makes it more difficult to offset the cost of medical school, as well as making going through that training less rewarding. Japan does have a very high debt-to-GDP ratio, but it's debatable how "crushing" that is for their economy.

#128 Alpha_ProgDes   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4688

Posted 03 May 2011 - 09:25 AM


Again, which resolution gave permission to carry out an invasion?


Permission is not necessary to combat national security threats. War is the breakdown of law. No one can grant permission, by definition.

The problem was and still is that Iraq wasn't a national security threat and everyone knew that. Before and after. So pretending that the US upholding the law and enforcing a resolution because of access is laughable at best. Even without the access, they knew Iraq wasn't a threat. Documentation and various organizations (such as the IAEA) provided evidence it wasn't a threat. So there was no reason to invade. Period.

The fight was in Afghanistan and in hindsight Pakistan. Not Iraq. If we had Iraq we wouldn't have a problem with Iran right now. US foreign policy and Iran go to together like sinners and hellfire.
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#129 d000hg   Members   -  Reputation: 723

Posted 03 May 2011 - 09:44 AM

So maybe this should clue you in on the fact that this is about more than just the assassination of some criminal. Maybe, just maybe, this was a slightly more complicated moment.

I doubt it, they were Americans. They were just cheering that in their simple world view, "the good guy beat the bad guy". Americans' relationship with terrorists is like that with communism a few decades back.

#130 trzy   Members   -  Reputation: 100

Posted 03 May 2011 - 09:45 AM


Life expectancy factors all of this into account, and the US may actually be leading there.

Does the U.S. Lead in Life Expectancy?

I pretty much agree with the rest of your post. But the point made above is key.


It might be key if you hadn't trotted out things like cancer survivorship rates, or if that regression were more definitive.


Survival rates are a different matter but nevertheless a very important contributor to the United States' overall excellent life expectancy. Another factor you may want to look into is the infant mortality rate, which is computed differently (and, arguably, more accurately) by the United States, seemingly inflating the number.

The government aggressively regulates the price of medical procedures, which keeps the cost of most routine medical services extremely low, so while it's still a significant expenditure on the national level it's far less expense per patient than in the US (even with the government picking up ~70% of the tab in many situations).


Reducing costs is never as simple as dictating price. Either quality is being sacrificed, or providers are finding ways to recoup the money elsewhere.

Japan does indeed have problems. As I noted above, doctors there are not pleased with their pay, especially because lower income makes it more difficult to offset the cost of medical school, as well as making going through that training less rewarding. Japan does have a very high debt-to-GDP ratio, but it's debatable how "crushing" that is for their economy.


Time will tell but presently, Japan's lethargic economy is costing the younger generation income and opportunity. It can't go on forever.
----Bart

#131 Zeypher   Members   -  Reputation: 148

Posted 05 May 2011 - 04:08 AM

All good and well! But I feel this may get worst for those who really hate American and those who are deployed... getting rocketed more! I've been out there before this news, it will be a matter of time before something will escalate! Stay safe out there!
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#132 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 28667

Posted 06 May 2011 - 12:50 AM

This doesn't sound like any capture/arrest that I've ever heard of. It sounds very much like an assassination.

Only one of four principal targets shot dead by U.S. commandos in the raid which killed Osama bin Laden was involved in any hostile fire, a person familiar with the latest U.S. government reporting on the raid told Reuters on Thursday.

Bin Laden was not armed when he was shot dead, nor are there indications that he directly threatened his attackers.

A SEAL squad moved in darkness on the guest house, one of two dwellings inside the walls of bin Laden's compound. They were met with hostile fire. As they moved in, they shot a man who was in the guest house who turned out to be Abu Ahmed Al-Kuwaiti, an al Qaeda courier.

After shooting al-Kuwaiti U.S. commandos moved onto the compound's three-story main residence. As they entered the house, they saw a man with his hands behind his back. Fearing that the man might be holding a weapon behind him, the commandos shot him dead.

After killing the second courier, commandos started climbing the stairs to the house's upper floors. As they climbed, a man charged down the stairs at them, and was shot dead. U.S. authorities now believe that he was Osama bin Laden's son.

As commandos proceeded up the stairs, they saw a person they believed was bin Laden either poke his head out of a door or over a balcony. The attackers took at least one shot at the person, who then retreated back inside the room he had come from.

The U.S. commandos proceeded to the top floor and into the room where the man had retreated. While entering the room, they were rushed by a woman. The woman, now believed to be one of bin Laden's wives, was shot in the leg.

After shooting her, the commandos pushed her to the side. The attackers did not wait for a reaction and immediately shot the al Qaeda leader dead.

Senior Pakistani security officials told Reuters that U.S. accounts had been misleading in describing a long gunbattle at the compound where bin Laden and four others were killed by an elite squad of U.S. Navy SEALs.

U.S. officials originally spoke of a 40-minute firefight. The White House has blamed the "fog of war" for the changing accounts.

They're not even denying that they killed him in cold blood -- they're calling it "national self-defence", not even self-defence on the part of the commandos.

"It was justified as an act of national self-defense," Holder said. "If he had surrendered, attempted to surrender, I think we should obviously have accepted that, but there was no indication that he wanted to do that and therefore his killing was appropriate."



#133 owl   Banned   -  Reputation: 364

Posted 06 May 2011 - 02:14 AM

I just dreamed my family had adopted a <i>mini</i> (bald) Bin Laden. But I saw his real intentions so I handled him to the police. I think I broke his heart though.
Then, all of a sudden, I was adopted and I was doing my (blonde) step-mom and step-sister at the park, with the police watching. And my performance was quite poor.

W. T. F.? I woke-up kind of disgusted I must admit. *lights a cig*
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#134 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 06 May 2011 - 06:54 AM

I just dreamed my family had adopted a <i>mini</i> (bald) Bin Laden. But I saw his real intentions so I handled him to the police. I think I broke his heart though.
Then, all of a sudden, I was adopted and I was doing my (blonde) step-mom and step-sister at the park, with the police watching. And my performance was quite poor.

W. T. F.? I woke-up kind of disgusted I must admit. *lights a cig*


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#135 Alpha_ProgDes   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 4688

Posted 06 May 2011 - 11:31 AM

This doesn't sound like any capture/arrest that I've ever heard of. It sounds very much like an assassination.

Only one of four principal targets shot dead by U.S. commandos in the raid which killed Osama bin Laden was involved in any hostile fire, a person familiar with the latest U.S. government reporting on the raid told Reuters on Thursday.

Bin Laden was not armed when he was shot dead, nor are there indications that he directly threatened his attackers.

A SEAL squad moved in darkness on the guest house, one of two dwellings inside the walls of bin Laden's compound. They were met with hostile fire. As they moved in, they shot a man who was in the guest house who turned out to be Abu Ahmed Al-Kuwaiti, an al Qaeda courier.

After shooting al-Kuwaiti U.S. commandos moved onto the compound's three-story main residence. As they entered the house, they saw a man with his hands behind his back. Fearing that the man might be holding a weapon behind him, the commandos shot him dead.

After killing the second courier, commandos started climbing the stairs to the house's upper floors. As they climbed, a man charged down the stairs at them, and was shot dead. U.S. authorities now believe that he was Osama bin Laden's son.

As commandos proceeded up the stairs, they saw a person they believed was bin Laden either poke his head out of a door or over a balcony. The attackers took at least one shot at the person, who then retreated back inside the room he had come from.

The U.S. commandos proceeded to the top floor and into the room where the man had retreated. While entering the room, they were rushed by a woman. The woman, now believed to be one of bin Laden's wives, was shot in the leg.

After shooting her, the commandos pushed her to the side. The attackers did not wait for a reaction and immediately shot the al Qaeda leader dead.

Senior Pakistani security officials told Reuters that U.S. accounts had been misleading in describing a long gunbattle at the compound where bin Laden and four others were killed by an elite squad of U.S. Navy SEALs.

At least I know they have 6 Jason Bournes on their team. Geez. Scary efficiency.
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#136 way2lazy2care   Members   -  Reputation: 782

Posted 06 May 2011 - 11:55 AM

This doesn't sound like any capture/arrest that I've ever heard of. It sounds very much like an assassination.

He's had a public price on his head dead or alive for 10 years and as far as I can tell they ran in the front door guns blazing. That's not really an assassination.

#137 SimonForsman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5991

Posted 06 May 2011 - 01:01 PM

This doesn't sound like any capture/arrest that I've ever heard of. It sounds very much like an assassination.

Only one of four principal targets shot dead by U.S. commandos in the raid which killed Osama bin Laden was involved in any hostile fire, a person familiar with the latest U.S. government reporting on the raid told Reuters on Thursday.

Bin Laden was not armed when he was shot dead, nor are there indications that he directly threatened his attackers.

A SEAL squad moved in darkness on the guest house, one of two dwellings inside the walls of bin Laden's compound. They were met with hostile fire. As they moved in, they shot a man who was in the guest house who turned out to be Abu Ahmed Al-Kuwaiti, an al Qaeda courier.

After shooting al-Kuwaiti U.S. commandos moved onto the compound's three-story main residence. As they entered the house, they saw a man with his hands behind his back. Fearing that the man might be holding a weapon behind him, the commandos shot him dead.

After killing the second courier, commandos started climbing the stairs to the house's upper floors. As they climbed, a man charged down the stairs at them, and was shot dead. U.S. authorities now believe that he was Osama bin Laden's son.

As commandos proceeded up the stairs, they saw a person they believed was bin Laden either poke his head out of a door or over a balcony. The attackers took at least one shot at the person, who then retreated back inside the room he had come from.

The U.S. commandos proceeded to the top floor and into the room where the man had retreated. While entering the room, they were rushed by a woman. The woman, now believed to be one of bin Laden's wives, was shot in the leg.

After shooting her, the commandos pushed her to the side. The attackers did not wait for a reaction and immediately shot the al Qaeda leader dead.

Senior Pakistani security officials told Reuters that U.S. accounts had been misleading in describing a long gunbattle at the compound where bin Laden and four others were killed by an elite squad of U.S. Navy SEALs.

U.S. officials originally spoke of a 40-minute firefight. The White House has blamed the "fog of war" for the changing accounts.

They're not even denying that they killed him in cold blood -- they're calling it "national self-defence", not even self-defence on the part of the commandos.

"It was justified as an act of national self-defense," Holder said. "If he had surrendered, attempted to surrender, I think we should obviously have accepted that, but there was no indication that he wanted to do that and therefore his killing was appropriate."


While killing bin laden was morally wrong and probably even illegal when considering international law i still think it was the right thing to do when looking at things pragmatically, holding him captive would most likely result in alot of terrorist activity aimed at forcing the US to release him which would be a very bad thing for US citizens in general, The only other option would have been to allow him to escape and hope to kill him in a "fair" fight later (Not a compelling option i think)
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#138 frob   Moderators   -  Reputation: 19849

Posted 06 May 2011 - 02:31 PM

While killing bin laden was morally wrong and probably even illegal when considering international law i still think it was the right thing to do when looking at things pragmatically, holding him captive would most likely result in alot of terrorist activity aimed at forcing the US to release him which would be a very bad thing for US citizens in general, The only other option would have been to allow him to escape and hope to kill him in a "fair" fight later (Not a compelling option i think)


Words like "illegal" become difficult when it comes to war. As been pointed out by many people over this thread and others, wars and military conflict are beyond the normal bounds of law; they are when civility and civil law has failed.

The rules of war (which evolved from the Geneva Convention) cover it. They are international treaties that describe violations of human rights beyond what is considered reasonable even during a war. They are no longer just the Geneva Convention, but have evolved into a body of "Customary international humanitarian law". Many nations have signed on to the treaties, or a subset of the treaties, that constitute Customary IHL.




Specific human targets, including leaders, scientists, and popular figures can be targeted as part of military operations. Usama bin Ladin was very clearly a valid and legal military target under those rules.

A target can be captured or killed unless they become a non-combatant described in Customary IHL:
"Rule 47. Attacking persons who are recognized as hors de combat is prohibited. A person hors de combatis:(a) anyone who is in the power of an adverse party;(b) anyone who is defenceless because of unconsciousness, shipwreck, wounds or sickness; or© anyone who clearly expresses an intention to surrender;provided he or she abstains from any hostile act and does not attempt to escape."

If the target clearly offers to surrender AND can be captured safely, then killing the target would be eligible as a potential international war crime. However, if they do not clearly offer to surrender, or if they do offer but cannot be safely captured, killing them is not considered a war crime. The ICRC describes the rule with: "a party which “takes” surrender is not required to go out to receive surrender; instead, the party offering surrender has to come forward and submit to the control of the enemy forces."

Acts like simply laying down your guns while across a battlefield or running from your own unit toward the enemy with hands up are not enough by themselves. It is a blurry line that is ultimately decided by a group of judges in a war crimes trial.

Obviously they haven't released recordings of their operation, but based on what has been said the man did not "offer surrender" in a way even closely resembling what is required by international humanitarian law.
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#139 SimonForsman   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 5991

Posted 06 May 2011 - 04:52 PM


While killing bin laden was morally wrong and probably even illegal when considering international law i still think it was the right thing to do when looking at things pragmatically, holding him captive would most likely result in alot of terrorist activity aimed at forcing the US to release him which would be a very bad thing for US citizens in general, The only other option would have been to allow him to escape and hope to kill him in a "fair" fight later (Not a compelling option i think)

Specific human targets, including leaders, scientists, and popular figures can be targeted as part of military operations. Usama bin Ladin was very clearly a valid and legal military target under those rules.


This isn't quite true scientists and popular figures are generally civilians, not combatants and can't be individually targeted(Targeting important facilities is allowed though), leaders have varying status depending on their position (If the US and Canada were at war and the canadians assassinated the New York mayor it would be a war crime, assassinating the US president however would not (as he is effectivly a part of the military command structure).

Assuming Usama qualified as an enemy combatant it was indeed legal to assassinate him though. (Prior to 2001 terrorists were generally considered to be criminals, not enemy combatants so its debatable, but i guess its an acceptable interpretation given how they operate (its not quite comparable to the more restricted scope of domestic terrorism afterall).

Ofcourse this also assumes that pakistan gave their permission for the operation (If not it would have been a violation of their sovereignity, but given the rather good US-Pakistan relations since 2001 I assume they did allow it.
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#140 Hodgman   Moderators   -  Reputation: 28667

Posted 07 May 2011 - 07:59 AM

The rules of war (which evolved from the Geneva Convention) cover it.

As far as I know, the US isn't in a state of war with Pakistan. A 'war' in this definition requires there to be two nations involved. Hunting international criminals inside another sovereign state is not a war.
Which nations has America declared war against at the moment?

This also means it can't be a "war crime". Instead it's just a violation of Pakistani law (crossing the border without permission, weapons possession, use of explosives, trespass, break-and-enter, GBH, quadruple murder...). Pakistan sure as hell isn't going to do anything about this violation of their sovereignty though, because like you were saying, words like "illegal" become difficult when dealing with a rogue state armed to the teeth with WMDs.

Also, isn't it US policy that terrorists are "unlawful combatants" and aren't covered by the laws of war? i.e. They are not enemy soldiers captured during war, which instead, according to convention, places them under the jurisdiction of the detaining state's domestic law (which in practice means an American military tribunal)?

While killing bin laden was morally wrong and probably even illegal when considering international law i still think it was the right thing to do when looking at things pragmatically, holding him captive would most likely result in alot of terrorist activity aimed at forcing the US to release him which would be a very bad thing for US citizens in general

The
European international courts would've been happy to give him a trial -- in fact it would've been seen as a ridiculous show-trial if the Americans had done it themselves.

Ofcourse this also assumes that pakistan gave their permission for the operation (If not it would have been a violation of their sovereignity, but given the rather good US-Pakistan relations since 2001 I assume they did allow it.

They've publicly said that they did not give permission for the operation, and weren't even informed until afterwards. I wouldn't call them "good relations" either - cooperating with the US is a very tense and harmful necessary evil for them.

He's had a public price on his head dead or alive for 10 years and as far as I can tell they ran in the front door guns blazing. That's not really an assassination.

They ran in guns blazing, so it's not an assassination? They offered a cash reward in an effort to incite someone to kill him, so it's not an assassination? What???




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