No Misunderstanding of a Changing Taliban Front

A reply by Con George-Kotzabasis to:

Understanding a Changing Taliban Front

Post Global, June 23, 2008

By Dr. Ali Ettefagh

In an apocalyptic religious cult as the Taliban criminality has no separate existence as all means of warfare are justifiable in the eyes of fanatics. A “conditional amnesty” follows the rudimentary stage  of defeat of the Taliban in the field of battle and cannot be a precursor of that defeat “that should be traded with the Taliban promise to re-group as a non-violent, unarmed political party in Afghanistan”, to quote Ali. This follows the logic of the Irish experience, as Dr. Ettefagh points out, with the realization “of Irish militants that they could not win and had to settle for a deal”.

Hence, “a changing Taliban front” must not be based on the misunderstanding that NATO and the  Americans should start negotiating with the Taliban before the ”umbilical cord” of the latter is cut from Pakistan. And this cut can only be accomplished by the incursion of NATO and American troops of Pakistan’s borders and the destruction of Taliban and al Qaeda sanctuaries and supplies.

In a war of global borderless terror, a nation that cannot prevent, either due to a political unwillingness or military incapacity, terrorists from using its territory as havens of safety, supplies and recruitment, the principle of national sovereignty is completely inconsistent with the military and strategic goals of such war and is therefore inherently obsolete.   

Your opinion…

 

Who Has the Right to Declare War?

Reply by Con George-Kotzabasis to:

Now to Say Never Again

By George Williams

On Line Opinion June 18, 2008

 Professor Williams with the typical lawyer’s chicanery and the arrogance of historical and political ignorance argues that Parliamentary approval should be the prerequisite for the declaration of war. To do so however is to deprive the sagacious right of statesmen to make the decision for war and give it instead to the “swirl”, to use Paul Keating’s word describing his colleagues in the Senate, of mediocre politicians.

War being an instrument of last resort is not made by a lightly populist decision, as Williams implies, but by a well –informed resolute and wise leadership that leads its people to war as an absolute necessity when a nation is threatened or attacked by a deadly irreconcilable enemy.

Williams’ proposal is neither intellectually and historically wise, nor does it have the depth, prudence, and firmness of statesmanship. It’s instead the proposal of an unreconstructed political wimp pontificating from his left-leaning academic chair and echoing the constant refrain of the illusionist pacifists of “No to War”, as if the world was and is a loving circle of holding hands.

Your opinion…   

 

Diplomacy’s Endgame with Iran

A reply by Con George-Kotzabasis to:

Steven Clemons

Cheney Winning the Inside Battles Again

Washington Note, June 09, 2008

Diplomacy is eminently the best way to resolve conflicts. But beyond a certain point the art of Talleyrand becomes completely ineffective and to continue it with an irreconcilable determined enemy is not only a barren exercise but also extremely dangerous, as one has to fight this enemy in the future when he will be much stronger at an immensely higher cost.

In the case of Iran, diplomacy has reached its barren point. The Ahmadinejad regime should be clearly given the option of immediately ceasing and dismantling its nuclear program or stand facing an indetermined force de frappe at an unspecified time. And it should be made crystal clear to the regime that this attack would be targeting the higher echelons of the government, the military, and its religious leaders. This threat against its triumvirate leadership could steer an existential turmoil in the latter that could lead to a “palace revolt” against the Ahmadinejad leadership replacing it with a moderate one which would yield to the demands of the international community.

Your opinion…

WILL HUMAN GREENHOUSE EMISSIONS NEGATE ECO-BALANCING FORCE OF NATURE?

A short reply by Con George-Kotzabasis to:

A Cool Look at Professor Aitkin’s Global Warming Scepticism By Dr. Geoff Davies

On Line Opinion, May 16, 2008

 It would be impertinently impetuous and stupid for a layperson like me to argue with an expert in the field as Dr. Davies is. I am however a skeptic. It might well be scientifically true that human “greenhouse emissions are the cause of the present warming”. But in my opinion the crucial scientific question is whether these negative human actions have the power to trump the positive natural forces of the Universe that determine the intra and inter relations of the planets and the sun in their state of equilibrium. It’s this axiomatic question that the supporters of climate change, like Davies, must answer first.

There has been ample evidence that in Roman and medieval times the earth was warmer. Davies himself admits that there have been “fluctuations in the amount of heat received from the sun (due to the slow gyrations of the earth in its orbit around the sun”). It seems however that natural forces triggered their own “stabilizers” of cooling periods and the earth once again found its viable natural balance and avoided catastrophe or extinction. Further, Nigel Lawson, the former editor of the Spectator and Chancellor of the Exchequer, poses the up till now unassailable question that has not been answered by the climate “gloomies”.: “Is it really plausible that there is an ideal average world temperature…from which a small departure in either direction would spell disaster?

When one chooses to go on the warpath one must be confident about his position and clear and undeviating about one’s goals. Dr Davies seems like a defeated “combatant” to have abandoned the field of battle and its original goal. It seems that he finds it difficult to prove his case and therefore his goal no longer is to demonstrate that greenhouse emissions cause global warming but to argue, by shifting his position and aims, that by stopping the “over-exploitation of the earth”, reducing “energy use and greenhouse emissions”, all of which are easily achievable according to him, the end result will be “to improve our lives”, save money, and “allow our grandchildren’s grandchildren to inherit a rich and fulfilling world.”

 With this new position Dr Davies has dropped the scepter of science from his hand and replaced it with the staff of the Greek seer Tiresias, predicting generations ahead the fulfilled life of “grandchildren” But forgetting that the threats to a happy future for mankind might not only arise from the over exploitation of the earth but also from the mutual deadly belligerence of men their religious dogmas and ideologies.

But wait for his zinger: “If we are causing global warming” by “a change in our lifestyle… for reasons other than global warming…it would mitigate that problem too. If not, no harm done” Hence, there is a great chance that by the Walpolean fairy of serendipity anthropogenic global warming will evaporate. But without for a moment daring to dispute the power of fairies, I continue to rest on the oars of my skepticism that global warming will bring in its wake disaster by escaping the countering equilibrating natural forces of the universe.

A reply by Dr. Davies and a counter reply by Kotzabasis

In my challenge of 17 May my intention was to broaden the view to see if there might be some common ground. Evidently Kotzabasis wasn’t capable of comprehending that.I’ll broaden it even a little more. If you don’t believe we can endlessly increase our use of Earth’s resources, the implication is that at some time we will have to change the way our economies work, and also stop the increase in population. If you also agree the Earth is showing many signs of over-exploitation (I include global warming, though you may not), then it suggests the time is now. Then, why would you spend so much energy arguing against “AGW”? Why not argue for (or work for) the change we must make?

Clive Hamilton on New Matilda says a better description of many objectors is “contrarian”. Do you just like to object and be contrary? If so, deal with your personal problem instead of spraying it around on everyone else.
If you think we CAN endlessly increase our use of Earth’s resources, I can only refer you to basic physics, starting with conservation of mass. (Note: I said “endlessly increase our use of resources”. I didn’t say “indefinitely improve the quality of our lives”. We can use fewer resources more cleverly than we do now and still live well.)
If you don’t see the Earth showing any signs of stress, I suggest there are none so blind as those who will not see.
I refer everyone to Clive’s article:http://www.newmatilda.com/2008/05/19/death-rattles-climate-change-skeptics
He does a better job than me of giving a fair portrait of science, climate scientists and IPCC, and contrasting them with the shonky denialists, who of course always claim there’s a conspiracy to prevent them from publishing.

 

 

Posted by Geoff Davies, Tuesday, 20 May 2008 10:35:52 AM

 Dr. Davies

It was evident even to blind Fredie that you broadened your view since you felt you were “narrow” in your arguments to make your case on the original issue of global warming. It’s rather amusing to hear a scientist say that by broadening his view he was seeking to find “some common ground”. Scientists, as you know better than me, are not interested in seeking a common ground but in seeking the truth. And once they are confident that they are close to finding it they don’t deviate from their path. But you did! Without consciously realizing that by doing so you were weakening your original position. 

I can assure you I am no Hamiltonian “contrarian”. If you had read my first post you would have seen that. You just gave me the strong impression with your “broadening” post that you were no longer arguing like a scientist but like a seer or more precisely like an ideologue. And your current post with its “common ground” substantiates this impression.

Con George-Kotzabasis