Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Military News and current conflicts. Middle East, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc.
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby RF » Tue Dec 08, 2009 11:13 am

lwd has outlined entirely reasonable objectives of our countries mutual current involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. My complaint is that the objectives are not being properly identified or achieved, that these conflicts are continuing, and that there seems no end to this situation, because in Britain there is no proper explanation as to what our armed forces are actually doing. And the longer this is taking the less likely the objectives will be achieved, especially if our Labour Government can't decide what they are.
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby RF » Tue Dec 08, 2009 11:19 am

Bgile wrote:Funny in all that not one mention of 9/11.


This is what happens when the conflict drags on and on and on. Nobody in Britain gives a toss about the ninth of November, it doesn't mean anything to them, or indeed to me.

If this is a reference to the attack on the World Trade Center, that happened on the eleventh of September, in Britain the calendar designation is 11/9, we put the day before the month. Most people here will have some recollection of that but won't connect it to what we are supposed to be doing in Afghanistan. President Bush had his chance to settle matters. He blew it. President Goldwater or President Wallace would not have blown it.
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby Bgile » Tue Dec 08, 2009 1:23 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote:Bgile:

I do not think US soldiers behave better than any other soldiers of western societies.


I didn't say they did. Neither do they typically behave worse.

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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Tue Dec 08, 2009 1:36 pm

Bgile:

I didn't say they did. Neither do they typically behave worse.


Granted and agreed.
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby lwd » Tue Dec 08, 2009 4:17 pm

RF wrote:lwd,

political spin is the line of propaganda taken to put an interpretation on events, usually cast by a ''spin doctor'' as the propaganda minister is now called. These are techniques used by our Labour Government to manipulate and focus public opinion in Britain to make them look good. All techniques pioneered by Dr Geobbels.

Geobbels was hardly a pinoeer in that field. Look for instance at some of the US newspapers in the 19th century. However the above defintion of spin is similar to the one I'm familiar with and your use of it doesn't seem to fit.

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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby lwd » Tue Dec 08, 2009 4:24 pm

RF wrote:.... My complaint is that the objectives are not being properly identified or achieved, ...

My complaint would be that I'm not sure whether or not the above is happening. Have the objectives been identified? In some cases they seem to have. How well they are communcicated to the various players and whether or not they are being achieved is another matter. Indeed depending on the source I use for my information I get entirely differen pictures of what's happaening and what the goals are. Unfortunatly the major news media seem to be one of the least trustworthy news sources with high government officials not far from them.
that these conflicts are continuing, and that there seems no end to this situation,

From my perspective the war in Iraq or at least the US involvement in it is clearly winding down there will likely be some US presence for an extended period but it will shrink considerably over the next few years ... or at least that's the picture I get.
because in Britain there is no proper explanation as to what our armed forces are actually doing. And the longer this is taking the less likely the objectives will be achieved, especially if our Labour Government can't decide what they are.

Indeed, one of the biggest problems is that when the government doesn't communicate what they think they are doing well it leaves questions whether the failure is in the thinking or the communication (inclusive or implied).

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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby lwd » Tue Dec 08, 2009 4:34 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote: ...
I do not think US soldiers behave better than any other soldiers of western societies.

Depends considerablly on what your standards are and when you are talking about. Certainly US soldiers behaved better than Nazi ones but their behaviour was often blessed and/or encouraged by their command structure of their government.
In Italy the US soldiers did use to execute Germans prisioners on the spot and did so in France before the Germans got the oportunity to do so at Malmedy.

[/quote]
But these were rare instances and the US soldiers were punished for it (one of the reasons it was rare).
Killings took place also in the Pacific landings and firing upon japanese sailors at the water.

But how many of these were really cases of "misbehaving" vs the nature of the war?
We have also to acknowledge that the Germans, even with the Blitz, didn´t even got near to the RAF night bombings or the Eight Air Force strategic bombings: Hamburg, Dresden, Berlin, Munich, etc. etc.

However that was a matter of capability rather than behavior.
Just look at the civilian casaulties on each side: the US only casualties were at Pearl Harbor and Germans triplicate or quadruplicate the British.
....,

This isn't a matter of one side behaving better or worse though it's a matter of it's better to be on the winning side than the loosing side.

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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby hammy » Tue Dec 08, 2009 8:34 pm

Bgile wrote:Hammy,

It's amazing to me that you think because we didn't experience the Blitz we aren't allowed to get upset when something like the attack on the Twin Towers happens to us. By implication, you wouldn't be upset if they'd crashed an airplane into a building with 3,000 of your countrymen, since it was just a flee bite on an elephant and was therefore insignificant. Just what proportion of Englishmen alive today experienced the Blitz? I'm guessing it's pretty small.


I didnt say you shouldnt get upset . I said that the American people as a whole live with a false sense of security , and that when something like this happens , they are unable to cope with it .
I suppose that the recently halted Irish Terrorist Bombing campaign over here , which has affected us for the last 40 years or so , has left us used to terrorist attacks , and certainly the first set of four suicide bombings in London , except for those close to the events , did little that I can see to make a change in the national attitude .
You are right that it is only the Old who now remember the Blitz , but images and stories from the wartime are constantly in the papers/on Radio and TV , the UK seems obsessed with the subject . There is a whole page of reminicence about Air raid Wardens and US Bomber accidental crashes in the local paper just today , and I will be very surprised if , when watching a couple of hours of TV tonight , Mr Hitler's features dont glare out at me at some point .
And we would be (very) upset if that had happened here , to , say , Canary Wharf in London , which I suppose is our Manhatten equivalent . I dont think we would be very surprised by it , is all .

The rest of your venting at my expense is obviously in keeping with your impression of my country as a whole. I'm not proud of the actions of some of my countrymen or our leadership, and I'm sure your soldiers would never do such things because of their high sense of moral superiority.


I'm not venting at you , what for ? Mr Bush and Mr Cheney , and our prize Drama Queen , Mr Blair , and all those with them are the ones in the dock for all this . I actually like America , and most of the many Americans I have met down the years , and I cant wait to grab my retirement money and the missus and cross the "pond" and get a small RV and tour the whole place for a year and see it all . We'll pop in to see you , probably .
As for our soldiers , they already have behaved in these stupid ways , because many of them are ignorant and ill-educated adolescents drawn from the poor and routinely brutish environments of our society . The Army doesn't want intelligent people as front line "Grunts" . It wants highly trained chimps who are quick to learn and always obey .
As the Duke of Wellington said , " I dont know what they do to the Enemy but by God they frighten me ! " .
True then , true now .

I guess my reaction to your post is just because of my inherent American arrogance, but I can't help myself. I was probably born that way.


Now dont sulk ,please . Many Americans appear to be that way , ie that it is inconceivable that they should be disliked , or subject to criticism , and become very hurt when people do . We dont .
Apart from Fantasists like Mr Blair , we know that we , as a people , are duplicitous , dissembling selfish hypocrites , who dont give a toss for anything except money , and that the world hates and despises us for it .
(Its what made us Great !)
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Tue Dec 08, 2009 8:41 pm

lwd:

Depends considerablly on what your standards are and when you are talking about. Certainly US soldiers behaved better than Nazi ones but their behaviour was often blessed and/or encouraged by their command structure of their government.


Nazi soldiers did not exist. There was a German Army and the Waffen SS on the field. As far as we know, with exceptions as Malmedy, that were clearly counter balanced by similar allied behaivor there was no big difference between them. I do concur that the Germans behaved differently with the ruskies but, on the other hand so do the commies. No big deal.

But these were rare instances and the US soldiers were punished for it (one of the reasons it was rare).


Not all of them. Some where covered up, which is why we know of so few cases.

But how many of these were really cases of "misbehaving" vs the nature of the war?


Doesn´t matter: according to the pristine "war conduct" of the US crusaders in WWII they didn´t behave like that, only the barbarian japanese commit crimes. Which is why McArthur hang Yamashita for crimes he didn´t commited.... aside of kicking the ass of Percival.

However that was a matter of capability rather than behavior.


The Germans had their chance but concentrated in airfields and radar stations. But I grant that a SOB like Goering could have done more damage if he had some B 17s or Lankasters in his inventory.

This isn't a matter of one side behaving better or worse though it's a matter of it's better to be on the winning side than the loosing side.


So you agree, with me, that it´s not about morals or ethical speeches which are repulsive here. The issue is to win, whatever the costs and all moral stances are irrelevant. If you try to do it you are still are criminal and a hypocrite.

Regards,
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby hammy » Tue Dec 08, 2009 8:57 pm

RF wrote:President Goldwater or President Wallace would not have blown it.


R F that wouldnt be the late GEORGE Wallace of Alabama , would it ?

He who back in the days of the Montgomery High School "contretemps" , when a reporter asked him what he had to say regarding some comments made by Dr Martin Luther King about the unfolding events , said " I aint never heard of that Nigra " ?

I seem to remember he later got himself shot by some fellow citizen and became wheelchair bound , being cared for in the Governors Mansion thereafter by a team of Murderers with Life sentences that he had aquired from the State Penitentary , which shows great wisdom in obtaining a service that was Free , A strong deterrent to Ill-intentioned visitors , and completely loyal to him . Bravo sir !

Not THAT Wallace ?
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby lwd » Tue Dec 08, 2009 9:12 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote:
Nazi soldiers did not exist.

They most certainly did. Whether you limite the description to party members who were Nazis or all expand it to all who served the Nazi regime there were many who fit the defintion.
There was a German Army and the Waffen SS on the field. As far as we know, with exceptions as Malmedy, that were clearly counter balanced by similar allied behaivor there was no big difference between them.

Then your reading is very defficient. Check out the Nuremberg trials for other cases of German/Nazi forces breaching the accepted conventions or any good history of the Balkans or eastern front.
I do concur that the Germans behaved differently with the ruskies but, on the other hand so do the commies. No big deal.

Not just with the Soviets but with the Slavs in general including Poles and of course the Jews, and Gypsies, and ... well you get the picture. It most certainly was a big deal.

But these were rare instances and the US soldiers were punished for it (one of the reasons it was rare).


Not all of them. Some where covered up, which is why we know of so few cases.
[/quote]
That's an easy accusation to make. A very hard one to prove. While cover ups surely occured there is absolutely no evidence that they were at all common.
But how many of these were really cases of "misbehaving" vs the nature of the war?

Doesn´t matter: according to the pristine "war conduct" of the US crusaders in WWII they didn´t behave like that, only the barbarian japanese commit crimes.

Starwman ... and a very ill defined one at that.
Which is why McArthur hang Yamashita for crimes he didn´t commited.... aside of kicking the ass of Percival.

BS Karl.
However that was a matter of capability rather than behavior.

The Germans had their chance but concentrated in airfields and radar stations.
[/quote]
They most certainly did not. They were indeed the first ones to attack cities as general targets.
This isn't a matter of one side behaving better or worse though it's a matter of it's better to be on the winning side than the loosing side.

So you agree, with me, that it´s not about morals or ethical speeches which are repulsive here. The issue is to win, whatever the costs and all moral stances are irrelevant. If you try to do it you are still are criminal and a hypocrite.

No the issue is if you start a war with someone who is bigger than you and bomb his cities then you can expect your own to get bombed in return. If the other guy has more planes and more bombs then you are probably going to get hurt worse than him. The disperate German losses were a function not of thical differences but the amount of resources brought into play. Note that there were no Germans convicted of war crimes for bombing cities. The fact that it wasn't a war crime ie misbehavior is one of if not the primary reason for that.

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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby Karl Heidenreich » Tue Dec 08, 2009 9:27 pm

lwd:

hen your reading is very defficient. Check out the Nuremberg trials for other cases of German/Nazi forces breaching the accepted conventions or any good history of the Balkans or eastern front.


Nuremberg Trials were quite deficient in every aspect. Why wasn´t Bomber Harris, or Zhukov or Curtis Le May accused of war crimes? If the allied cannon has to be accepted as the objective one, then we are not allowed to continue. Nuremberg is hardly a standard, it´s just a mockery of justice, a institucionalized revenge with the coat of international law.

That's an easy accusation to make. A very hard one to prove. While cover ups surely occured there is absolutely no evidence that they were at all common.


Again, that does not eliminate at all the fact that those crimes happened.


Starwman ... and a very ill defined one at that.


What is a starwman? I imagine you mean: strawman. It is not ill defined... well it is for you because does not suit you and help you use your rethorical "talk it out" techniques that all of us already know that well. Returning to the matter, despite your strawman diversion, the US in the WWII stated that, whilst defending mankind from German and Japanese barbarism will abide the conduct of the Geneva Convention due to the moral superiority (in this case I´m refering to ethics not battlefield superiority) that will abide strictly to such cases as executing prisioners, sailors on the water or hanging enemy Generals on maked up charges.

BS Karl.


It is for you! But Yamashita was hanged under make up charges. The crimes that he was executed for were not his. And I´m quite fond of Mac.

They most certainly did not. They were indeed the first ones to attack cities as general targets.


Already agreed on that. Let´s remember that the German targeting of civilians was also an escalation of the British bombing of civilians. Both side were even.


To the issue is if you start a war with someone who is bigger than you and bomb his cities then you can expect your own to get bombed in return. If the other guy has more planes and more bombs then you are probably going to get hurt worse than him. The disperate German losses were a function not of thical differences but the amount of resources brought into play. Note that there were no Germans convicted of war crimes for bombing cities. The fact that it wasn't a war crime ie misbehavior is one of if not the primary reason for that.


BS lwd. You can never answer direct as with the Sherman vs Tiger tank: you have to been forced to answer direct and avoid your rethoric.
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby hammy » Tue Dec 08, 2009 10:02 pm

Karl Heidenreich wrote:
Already agreed on that. Let´s remember that the German targeting of civilians was also an escalation of the British bombing of civilians. Both side were even.


I'm afraid that Guernica , Madrid , Warsaw and Rotterdam all occurred before Britain struck at German civilian targets .

Some German bombers got lost over Southern England while trying to find their military targets here at night during the Battle of Britain in summer 1940 and some bombs were jettisoned over London . The RAF returned the compliment over Berlin a few nights later , and Uncle Adi threw one of his hissy fits and ordered the Luftwaffe to switch from the Southern English Fighter airfields and Radar stations , where the attrition campaign was actually working for them , to bombing London .

Very silly , especially as the Luftwaffe had no strategic bombing arm or programme and was really what would be known later as a "tactical Air Force" , ie flying artillery support for the Army , and optimised/equipped for that role .
The one bomber the Germans had that could carry a reasonable payload , the Heinkel 111 , was not accurate because the standard internal bomb bay held the bombs vertically , nose upwards , so they tumbled all over the sky on dropping .
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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby lwd » Wed Dec 09, 2009 1:49 am

Karl Heidenreich wrote:
Nuremberg Trials were quite deficient in every aspect.

Not really. There was considerable good research for instance and that was my point.
Why wasn´t Bomber Harris, or Zhukov or Curtis Le May accused of war crimes?

Because they didn't commit any. Got a hard question?
If the allied cannon has to be accepted as the objective one, then we are not allowed to continue. Nuremberg is hardly a standard, it´s just a mockery of justice, a institucionalized revenge with the coat of international law.

The process was hardly perfect on the other hand there were some very important and beneficial aspects of it. And yes it actually achieved a fairly reasonable level of justice.
Again, that does not eliminate at all the fact that those crimes happened.

No one has argued that they didn't happen but the concern under discussion is relative frequency of war crimes and clearly the Germans committed them at a much greater frequency than the allies.

Starwman ... and a very ill defined one at that.


What is a starwman? I imagine you mean: strawman.

Got it the first time. I should take more time when I post but was in a hurry not the only misspelling in that post ...
It is not ill defined...

It wasn't at all clear to me exactly what you were talking about and I could easily come up with a number of potential definitions, thus it was ill defined.
... the US in the WWII stated that, whilst defending mankind from German and Japanese barbarism will abide the conduct of the Geneva Convention due to the moral superiority (in this case I´m refering to ethics not battlefield superiority) that will abide strictly to such cases as executing prisioners, sailors on the water or hanging enemy Generals on maked up charges.

None of those are strictly against the Geneva conventions and indeed some are even allowed by them. What's more it is recognized that there will be incidents the important thing is that the national powers try those of their soldiers who commit acts in violation of the conventions. The Germans actually had orders from the top that were in violation of said conventions.
.... Let´s remember that the German targeting of civilians was also an escalation of the British bombing of civilians. ...

Not really.
To the issue is if you start a war with someone who is bigger than you and bomb his cities then you can expect your own to get bombed in return. If the other guy has more planes and more bombs then you are probably going to get hurt worse than him. The disperate German losses were a function not of ethical differences but the amount of resources brought into play. Note that there were no Germans convicted of war crimes for bombing cities. The fact that it wasn't a war crime ie misbehavior is one of if not the primary reason for that.

BS lwd. You can never answer direct as with the Sherman vs Tiger tank: you have to been forced to answer direct and avoid your rethoric.

What direct question? The fact that you want to focus on a very narrow set of data and make your call on that hardly obliges me to do the same.

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Re: Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan

Postby lwd » Wed Dec 09, 2009 1:53 am

hammy wrote: ... The RAF returned the compliment over Berlin a few nights later , and Uncle Adi threw one of his hissy fits and ordered the Luftwaffe to switch from the Southern English Fighter airfields and Radar stations , where the attrition campaign was actually working for them , to bombing London . ....

Not quite. The original British raids vs Germany were strictly vs military targets and the bombers were required to bring the bombs home or drop them over open ocean if they didn't have a clear target. Hitler was upset not so much because of civilian casualties but because the British actually bombed Berlin. The switch to London was however not due to that but was a preplanned part of the campaign and recommended at that point by the LW generals.


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