Punishing civilians

moral?

  • yes
  • no
0 voters

Do you think it is moral to punish civilians in democratic countries for the behaviour of their state? If the state is democratic, it means the civilians have chosen the goverment, so it seems that they should be held responsible for the crimes of their goverment.

For example, was it moral for Israel to damage civilian infrastructue in Lebanon as a mean to punish Lebanon for hosting a terrorist organization?

Or, was it moral for Israel to blockade the Palestinian territories as a mean to punish the Palestinians for choosing a terrorist organization for their goverment?

If you think its amoral, please suggest another way to punish a goverment.

If it is a true democracy the people are responsible. But in our case where it reeks of republic it would be far greater to punish the leaders. Since they are the ones who do as they wish.

I’m sure suicide bombers are in agreement with you.

Myself, I’m not so sure. Over 75% of the British electorate did not vote for Blair in the last election. A huge majority disagreed with his decision to go to war in Iraq.

Offer everyone free chocolate and cable tv (for the first 6 months) to leave that country and come and live in yours.

Actually I do think suicide bombers have a moral right to kill civilians.
If diplomacy doesn’t work, and occupation still takes place, then I guess its legitimate to kill civilians to put pressure on the goverment.

Since no one suggested another way to punish a democratic state except punishing its citizens, and since I don’t think such way exists, I assume two things:

  1. Israel rightfully damaged civilian infrastructue in Lebanon, and rightfully killed 1000 Lebanese civilians.
  2. Israel rightfully blockades the Palestinian territories, and even more rightfully assasinates Palestinian terrorists even when many civilians are killed too.

I have three more claims which I’m sure won’t be disputed.

  1. The Lebaenese goverment is responsible for Hezbollah’s attack on Israel since Hezbollah resides within its borders.
  2. The Palestinian goverment is responsible for terrorist attacks on Israel, because their goverment is itself a terrorists organization.
  3. Terrorism, when its only purpose is to destroy Israel and push all the Jews into the sea, damages the peace

From 3, 4 and 5 I conclude:

  1. Lebanon and Palestine damage the peace.

From 1, 2, and 6 I conclude:

  1. Israel doesn’t let Lebanon and Palestine to damage the peace, and therefore Israel keeps the peace.

Now:
8.) The U.N criticizes Israel for doing 1 and 2. And did so as long as Israel existed.
9) U.N is the most powerful organization that criticizes Israel.

From 7, 8 and 9 I conclude:

  1. U.N is the most powerful organization that interferes with Israel’s attempts to keep the peace.

From 9 I finally conclude:

  1. U.N is a huge threat to peace

Another undisputed claim:
11) U.N was created to keep world’s peace

From 10 and 11 I conclude:

CONCLUSION: We are in some fuckin bizzare troubles. Wake up people before its too late!

the un will shortly follow the league of nations

-Imp

Impenitent: the un will shortly follow the league of nations

K: and look at what happened shortly after, a little something
I like to call WORLD WAR 2. Of course it is no surprise that
people like imp and john bolton, who love death, destruction,
violence and chaos would love to see the end of the U.N.
I hope someday they find something positive and constructive
to do with their lives instead of living for death, violence
and destruction. It is a small dream of mine. To get people
to live for peace and happiness, instead of violence and anger.

Kropotkin

right. I love death and destruction.
how do you get peace and happiness?

bending over and saying please don’t kill me doesn’t do it.

the world is a violent, bloody place. those who refuse to see the world for what it is are grist for the mill.

-Imp

IMP: right. I love death and destruction.
how do you “get” peace and happiness?

K: simple. By working as hard for peace as you do
for death and violence.

IMP: bending over and saying please don’t kill me doesn’t do it.

K: LOL. If you met me, you would know I don’t do that.
it is not an either/or situation. As I heard somewhere before,
“there are many different ways to skin a cat”
(I bring that up as cat (big boy) is sitting on my lap)
there are many differnt ways to deal with any given situation.
I suggest we try intelligent solutions instead of dumb and
self defeating ones.

IMP: the world is a violent, bloody place. those who refuse to see the world for what it is are grist for the mill.

K: how many different acts of violence did you see today?
How many did you see yesterday?
Not on tv, but for real. Real acts of violence is rarely
seen. I personally haven’t seen an act of violence in
a couple of years. Violent and bloody place?
Hardly.

Kropotkin

violent and bloody.

-Imp

IMP: right. I love death and destruction.
how do you “get” peace and happiness?

K: simple. By working as hard for peace as you do
for death and violence.

IMP: doesn’t cut it"

K: Because you advocate for violence instead of peace.

IMP: bending over and saying please don’t kill me doesn’t do it.

K: LOL. If you met me, you would know I don’t do that.

IMP:“you talk like it”

K: not at all. The problem is not what I say, but what you hear.
You have no idea of what I want because my words can never
make it past your ideology. In another words, you focus on
your version of a liberal, instead of hearing what I say.
For example, your insistence’s that I follow a certain type
of anarchism. You are unable to get past the ideology in your
head to get to what I actually say. I am not longer an anarchist,
and haven’t been for many years, but in your thinking, I am
still a fervent believer.

IMP: it is not an either/or situation. As I heard somewhere before,
“there are many different ways to skin a cat”
(I bring that up as cat (big boy) is sitting on my lap)

IMP: dead cats are dead cats."

K: ouch. the cat left in a huff and clawed me
on its way out. youser, that hurt. Must have figured
out we were talking about dead cats.

K: there are many different ways to deal with any given situation.
I suggest we try intelligent solutions instead of dumb and
self defeating ones.

IMP: the only thing self defeating is holding your hands up and saying “please don’t kill me” you think everyone else in the world sees things your way to make the perfect utopia. they don’t. the fact that you refuse to see things as they are only shows that you can’t see the situation that you claim to have solved."

K: Your entire paragraph from holding hands up to perfect utopia,
is nothing I have ever said, but things you think I say. It is about
what I say in your mind, its about what you imagine I am saying.
Which has nothing to do with reality or anything I have said.
I am not interested in a “perfect utopia” cause it doesn’t exist.
I am interested in created a better world tomorrow then
existed today and that is a fairly modest goal. I have never
said to you or anyone on the planet earth “Please don’t kill me”
I have been in several situations that required me to fight my
way out and I did. I however am interested in finding solutions
that don’t always require violence.

IMP: the world is a violent, bloody place. those who refuse to see the world for what it is are grist for the mill.

K: how many different acts of violence did you see today?

IMP: hundreds"

K: yah sure. Unless you live in Iraq, there is no city
in the united states that is that violent or even in Europe that
is that violent.

K: How many did you see yesterday?

IMP: hundreds"

K: I am not one of the little kids around here,
I am not that impressed by claims of “I live in the most
violent place on earth” Save stories like that for your kids.
Like “I walked 10 miles in the snow to get to school.”

IMP: Not on tv, but for real."

IMP: “yes, for real.”

K: no place in the united states, Canada, or Europe is like
that.

K: Real acts of violence is rarely
seen.

IMP: open your eyes. you’ll see them all the time."

K: so in your neighborhood you see people get killed
all the time, beaten, and other acts of violence.
Nice try to make a point, but in reality, it doesn’t exist
in the the U.S. or Europe.

K: I personally haven’t seen an act of violence in
a couple of years.

IMP: “you must be blind”

K: blind, no, deaf or more correctly hard of hearing, yes.
but still I haven’t seen an act of violence in quite a while.
It must mean I am smart enough to avoid it, and you aren’t.

IMP: Violent and bloody place?
Hardly.

IMP: what did you eat today?"

K: for breakfast, I ate leftover pizza, lunch was leftover
buffalo wings, snack was pretzels and chips with salsa.
Dinner? Don’t know yet. It is only 5:30 PM around here so plenty
of time to get dinner. Thanks for asking.

Kropotkin

violent and bloody, you just refuse to see it.

keep swatting those flies pacifist

-Imp

this thread reminds me of the conversations shortly after 9/11 concerning the morality of bombing citizens. of punishing them for harboring terrorists.

no matter what the cause though, the people ARE the government. no matter if it is a dictator, socialist, monarch, republic or democracy. many dictators control their countries via means of military might. who is the military manned by? the civilians of that country. at any time, the majority of the civilians can overthrow their gov’t. if china, for instance, was truly fed up with the communist leaders, they could easily overpower the handful of leaders with their 2 billion citizens. granted, it would takes the majority, but that is gov’t, rule by the majority ideal. do the citizens not allow the gov’t structure to maintain leadership over them? to run all the details of their country for them?

with that thought, if a war with another country were needed for any reason, the war is with every citizen in support of that gov’t.

on a side thought, if this principle were followed through with, i think we would see a whole lot more responsibility within governments. do you think the citizens of each country would be taking a much larger interest as it would then have a bigger significant impact on their lives, not just their pocketbooks?

suicide bombers too

-Imp

Qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum

Vegetius

No amount of rhetoric will ever change this simple truism.

Your assumptions are faulty. In fact there are quite a few mechanisms to punish nations which Israel is a treaty signator to, including the UN. Isreal, according to its treaty obligations, should not even be in the palestinian territories and, when faced with a non-governmental attack from another nation is obliged to enter discussions with that other nation to preclude such activity.

The fact that Israel did not do so, but launched a premeditated unprovoked attack on another country is a total abrogation of its obligations under treaty. An unlawful act.

Also, Israel is a signator to the Geneva conventions which expressly forbid the deliberate killing of civilians and collective punishment. Another unlawful act.

The Lebanese government is not responsible for anything Hezbollah did. if it is then Israel is directly resposible for all the palestinian terrorism throughout the world for the last 30 years, including Munich, all the airplane highjackings, and killings because they did not control the PLO which is in Israel.

Now you may say that the PLO leadership was in Tunisia then but Hezbollah is in Damascus.

Israel is the governing authority in the palestinian territories. The palestinian authority some kind of crippled county council, with no control over its land or borders. It is by no means a soveriegn government and so, cannot be responsible for anything.

Occupation, when its only purpose is absolute submission and the continuous refusal to recognize the legitimacy of greivances, leaves no chance for peace.

I conclude that Israel, by refusing to recognize a democratic choice of the Palestinian people and clinging to an intransigent stance that disallows negotiation, perpetuates the state of war.

Also, Israel, by demanding that the very weak and unstable government of Lebanon do something that Israel itself is incapable of is simply an insane position taken to guarantee a future of violence.

And the total hypocrisy of Israel refusing to negotiate over the hostages, killing over 1,000 innocent civilians and causing $3Billion in damage, then offering to negotiate about the hostages.

How do you explain that?

yeah, you better wake up. wake up to the facts and stop dreaming. There is no way for Israel to force its will on the palestinians or anyone else. You have been doing this for 50 years now and what has that got you, nothing but a hell on earth.

You need to seriously rethink your basic position and maybe read up on conflict resolution.

Israel already discussed it with Lebanon, about one zillion times. It was even written in two U.N resolutions that Lebanon must take actions against Hezbollah. When discussing doesn’t help, there is only one way to go, you must punish the goverment. And the only way to punish a democratic goverment is by punishing its citizens.
There are two ways to punish citizens:

  1. Decrease in quality of life
  2. Death

Israel did only 1 intentionally, and it was probably not enough, since Lebabnon is still very reluctant about disarming Hezbollah.
Read Bishop's post for further enligntment.

Try to live in the middle east and we’ll see what you will think about Geneva conventions. And again, you didn’t mention any way to punish a goverment when diplomacy fails. If the U.N which is pro-arab organization couldn’t make Lebabnon take control over its southern lands, who can?

Lebanon is responsible for Hezbollah like Afganistan was responsible for 9/11. According to the same Geneva conventions you mentioned, Lebanon is definetely responsible because the attacks came from its territory.
Lebanon is responsible even if it can’t do anything about Hezbollah. Otherwise it should have declared Hezbollah as a sovereign state.

They can’t dance to both tunes. Either Palestinians want a state and then they take responsibility, or they don’t want a state, that is they want Jihad. If so, Israel’s hands are untied.

Unless the chosen Palestinian goverment recognizes the right of Israel to exist, there is no possibility for negotiations. I hope you understand why.

If they really wanted, Lebanon could disarm Hezbollah years ago. Lebanon is country of 5 million people, and Hezbollah has maybe several thousand militants. So thats about 0.1% of the population of Lebanon. Now don’t tell me Lebanon could do nothing about it.

Easily.
Israel doesn’t negotiate with terrorists, neither does any western country.
If Israel did negotiate, the terrorists would get a boost, and more soldiers would have been captured and killed. Hezbollah had 15,000 rockets pointed at Israel. Israel had to disarm this threat, it has nothing to do with the soldiers. We would have gone to war in any case.
What you probably don’t understand is that Hezbollah is PURE evil, they don’t suffer from occupation, they have no reason whatsoever to fight Israel except for their religious fanatism. Israel had to anihilate them at any cost.

By the way, so you’d know. Israel’s damage from this war is more than 3 billion dollars.

We don’t want to force our will on the Palestinians. We want them to have a state. They don’t want it. They don’t recognize Israel’s right to exist. They are shooting rockets from Gaza strip which is totally free from occupation. They chose Jihad and not freedom.

People are guilty for their governments.
We are all guilty for sitting on our asses and not demanding anarchy.

-Thirst

I have a somewhat chivalrous view of what warfare should be. Dissect that statement as you like.

My rules of warfare (in order of importance):

  1. Don’t lose - WIN.
  2. Targets should be militarily significant.
  3. Civilian casualties should be avoided, except when unavoidably necessary to assure compliance with rule 1 or 2.
  4. Collateral damage is unacceptable, except when necessary to assure the compliance with 1, 2 or 3.

I do understand that these rules could be interpreted to support the suicide bombers of Palestine. But I don’t accept a victory by Allah to be a victory. I mean it’s all good for Allah, but he doesn’t exist - so Rule 1 was violated. You can’t win (or not lose) a victory for a non-existent entity. (The same goes for the victories of Christians - except where religion was secondary.)

the first rule of warfare:

there are no civilians.

-Imp