Re: If we do get Afghanistan, what shall we do with it?

From: Mike Lorrey (
Date: Mon Nov 26 2001 - 09:27:33 MST

Dwayne wrote:
> (this bounced due to my csoft address not being subbed, so here it is
> again)
> (I just referred to this post in an earlier one. Ooops)
> Dwayne
> > >
> > > Or perhaps it comes down to this:
> > > Dropping "the bomb" did end the war, didn't it?
> >
> >
> > and if you are still reading me:
> >
> > "It is my opinion that the use of this barbarous weapon at
> > Hiroshima and Nagasaki was of no material assistance in
> > our war against Japan. The Japanese were almost defeated
> > and ready to being the first to use it,
> > we...adopted an ethical standard common to the barbarians
> > of the Dark Ages."
> >
> > ---Fleet Admiral William D. Leahy,
> > Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during World War II
> >
> >
> > I could go on, but here's an appeal to authority if I ever saw one.

Despite the fact that 'appeals to authority' are not admissible debate
tactics. However, whether Hiroshima or Nagasaki were legitimate targets
is a completely separate issue from whether using an atomic weapon is
legitimate for military forces. It can be said that nukes are
specifically political, not military, weapons.

However, note that Leahy's statement uses the qualifier "Materal
assistance". Whether a weapons use is of material assistance or not is
completely separate from whether it is of psychological assistance. In
that respect, a nuclear weapon is an entirely psychological weapon, as
any weapon of terror is. Military officers, especially those living at
that point in time, here in the US, were trained to specifically distain
any sort of 'unconventional warfare' as against the chivalrous
principles that evolved from the european martial tradition, and the
English one specifically.

Japan suffered from no such prejudices. In the Japanese martial
tradition, Sun Tsu's "The Art of War" was read, not Clausewitz's tome by
the same name. The Japanese martial tradition viewed victory as its own
end, and any means were permissible to achieve it. The only dishonor was
surrender. For this reason, Japan never signed the Geneva Conventions.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Sat May 11 2002 - 17:44:22 MDT