• Trey
    0
    Supporting Israel is denying reality and justifying conquest on the grounds of religion! The supporting evidence that Israel has a right to take that land is Biblical. No real logical justification at all. Being Non-Abrahamic it scares me
  • BitconnectCarlos
    2
    You keep saying that but Israel is worst on human rights from the three entities now named. Both in numbers and types of abuses. So you keep defending Israel despite it being worse than Hamas, the latter which you apparently find horrendously evil and bad since it's your go-to scapegoat.Benkei



    I don't believe Israel is objectively worse from a moral standpoint than Hamas. The US might have more human rights abuses than a smaller terrorist group -- is the US the bad guy in this case? Hamas' abuse is pervasive & ongoing towards the palestinian population and there's too many human rights abuses to count and it would be impossible to count them all. Hamas is also obviously a genocidal organization that strives for the elimination (or at least subjugation) of Israeli culture in the region, but I'm sure you know this. Hamas is a genocidal and racist organization but some of us still like to support them as they are the "under dogs."
  • StreetlightX
    58
    The US might have more human rights abuses than a smaller terrorist group -- is the US the bad guy in this case?BitconnectCarlos

    Yes.
  • BitconnectCarlos
    2


    Ok, but presumably you don't think al-Qaeda or ISIS are the good guys. Is there a side that you support in ISIS vs the US? Is there any government or NGO that you actually like? Who are your heroes?
  • StreetlightX
    58
    ISIS vs the US?BitconnectCarlos

    Well the US created ISIS so they're on the same side and objectively the US has enabled and carried out far more terror than ISIS could carry out in a lifetime of existence (and continues to). Its material support for Israel being among those enabling factors.
  • BitconnectCarlos
    2


    It's interesting how you have this conception of institutional guilt - the implication with you is that every US administration is seemingly responsible or accountable for every action taken by every previous administration and that all this guilt accumulates and seemingly never decreases (or is there a way?)

    So yeah, going by that logic any established country or group is going to be more evil than whatever is newly spawned.
  • StreetlightX
    58
    or is there a way?BitconnectCarlos

    Sure. The US can stop funding terrorist states like Israel, evacuate its imperial presence across the globe, redraw its ridiculous trade treaties which entrench global third world poverty, stop being the Earth's most violent enforcer state of capitalism and so on. Lots of things it can do. The universe is ripe with possibility :sparkle: And considering the US has had a continuity of fucking around and more importantly, fucking up the Middle-East since the idk, 40s without ever stopping, it's basically a straight line of American complicity to American complicity. Even bin Laden and 9/11 were outgrowths of US interventionism, which of course, they used as excuses to intervene more. Now that Afghanistan is going to go to shit (more so), one can only wait in anticipation till some new American dickhead decides it's time for a new invasion down the line in order to perpetuate the cycle.
  • BitconnectCarlos
    2


    Even if the US removed itself from foreign affairs entirely there'd still be plenty of legitimate grounds for criticism - from you and me both. My point is that the oppression doesn't stop and even if the US were to make huge concessions overseas we can still hurl any number of names at it for its domestic behavior. The US is just a troubled country, especially now, and I don't see how any politician or administration can immediately step in and solve these issues.
  • StreetlightX
    58
    Whose the pessimist now hmmm?

    And yes all power should be unrelentingly critiqued, for all time, until eternity.
  • Josh Alfred
    2
    I just thought I had some input on this. How is it that religious people are so separate and defensive in their ideological bent identities that they can not see the unity behind their own being? We are all human beings, and if we could identify with that, even from a rougher scientific vantage point, I don't think such warfare would occur. As long as there are men with conflicting ideological or religious values, there will be limited peace. Its really an ontological issue, but I don't think those responsible for the murder of each other really see it that way. Because of this it is very sad what human's do and have done because of the aforementioned.
  • tim wood
    8
    Tell us how you really feel, and btw, but for the US, what language might you be speaking now?

    Have you ever considered the proofs of very good liquor? Of fine Scotches, bourbons, cognacs, rums, etc.? Around 40% usually. Not always, but usually. Why do you suppose that is? Because departures from that are considered too weak on one side and too strong on the other. That is, without the balance, they're not what they're supposed to be or what they're represented as.

    And so with many, not all, but many, of your posts, their sense is drowned in vitriol. And you win the vitriol prize - who else would want it? But with it you wash sense away.
  • Benkei
    35
    but for the US,tim wood

    Ahaha, you forgot about the British empire? But for the Brits, you'd be speaking comanche or something.
  • StreetlightX
    58
    but for the UStim wood

    But for the US, whose ruthless pursuit of debt-claims in Europe after WWI virtually guaranteed continental depression and political fragmentation across the continent, WWII would likely not have ever happened. To quote the historian Michael Hudson,

    "no Act contributed more to the genesis of World War II than the intolerable burdens that the United States imposed on its allies of World War I and, through them, on Germany. Every U.S. administration from 1917 through the Roosevelt era employed the strategy of compelling repayment of these war debts, above all by Britain. The effect was to splinter Europe so that the continent was laid open politically as a possible province of the United States. Private finance capital could not have achieved that end, especially as the United States disarmed after World War I. The division and immiserization of Europe could achieve it, had the world not tumbled into a depression. ... World War II erupted not because of strains created by private finance capital, but because of a world bankruptcy in which intergovernmental [specifically, US - SX] financial claims played the major role. The debt and reparations tangle rendered nationalism the path of least resistance, and made pan-European internationalism impossible".

    So, how I really feel? Well since you asked - fuck everything about the US and anything it comes close to even remotely breathing beside.
  • tim wood
    8
    Ahaha, you forgot about the British empire? But for the Brits, you'd be speaking comanche or something.Benkei

    Hmm. An enticing thought, but much preliminary suppression by the Spanish, and the French too. More to the point is that Lewis and Clark's expedition occurred 1803 - 1806. Suppression after that, or from 1781 as a practical matter, then mainly or entirely American.

    Side note, American Indian languages (about which I know little) are apparently beyond fascinating, varying per one source from one tribe to another more than Chinese to English. Which seems extravagant, but one language described as having sentences but no words, the sentences, or what passes for them, being concatenations of prefixes and suffixes. Sounds like FInnish - but I don't know any Finnish either.
  • Bitter Crank
    56
    I know nothing about American Indian languages.

    varying per one source from one tribe to another more than Chinese to English.tim wood

    Side note to side note: Not surprising at all. The 13,000 years (+ or - a millennium) the aboriginal people occupied the Western Hemisphere alone, is plenty of time to develop barely related languages. Indo-European produced languages as mutually incomprehensible as Urdo and Gaelic over 5,000 to 8,000 years, and this in a smaller period of time than passed in the Western Hemisphere.

    It's quite possible that the proto-indiginous people carried more than one language group to start with. Though they were native to NE Asia, they had mixed with a well-travelled central Asian people who also mixed with proto-Europeans (all this promiscuous mixing over millennia). Europeans and Indigenous Americans share a large genetic inheritance from the central Asian people. ***

    *** A Short History of Humanity: A New History of Old Europe (2021) by Johannes Krause and Thomas Trappe. Krause is a scientist (archeogenetics at a Max Planck Institute), trappe is a science writer.
  • 180 Proof
    41
    Recommend an essay, collection, book whatever by Michael Hudson which elaborates on US complicity in directly fragmenting Europe and thereby creating the conditions that plunged that continent into WWII. Sounds like my country, though I've never heard the geopolitics of the inter-wars years described as the Hudson quote suggests.

    update:

    Sorry, just clicked on the link. Thanks SLX! :up:
  • tim wood
    8
    But for the US, whose ruthless pursuit of debt-claims in Europe after WWI virtually guaranteed continental depression and political fragmentation across the continent, WWII would likely not have ever happened. To quote the historian Michael Hudson,StreetlightX

    This was not the view of the French Marshall Foch upon (apparently) reading the Treaty of Versailles. According to Churchill - and other sources - he observed the treaty itself was merely a twenty-years' delay in resuming the war.

    Churchill's account was that the politicians understood very well the terms could not be met, but also that the public after the four years' strife would tolerate nothing less. In short, Europe did it to itself. Assuming this is accurate, that leaves the American role unexplained or at least requiring clarification.
  • 180 Proof
    41
    Ah yes, much closer to my historical understanding than Michael Hudson's. Still, I want to track down some of his work.
  • James Riley
    10
    the public after the four years' strife would tolerate nothing less. In short, Europe did it to itself.tim wood

    The same malady struck in 1865. Within twenty years, the statues started their long rise, the flag again flew, the liberated oppressed were still oppressed, the enemy remained in control of the land, and war still smolders. Sometimes you have to finish the job or your decedents pay the price for your weariness.
  • StreetlightX
    58
    Churchill's account was that the politicians understood very well the terms could not be met, but also that the public after the four years' strife would tolerate nothing less.tim wood

    Correct. Which is why the Europeans did almost everything they could to be leniant when it came to enforcement of repayment, knowing very well the utter abyss that lay before them were the terms held to a tee. Which might have worked, had the pig-headedness of the US not demanded payments on an utterly inflexible schedule from its Europeans 'allies' even as it made humongous profits off the interests of its war loans. As with everything the US touches, it all went to shit on its account.

    It's pretty eye opening. It also details how US 'aid', along with the post-war trade institutions that it set up - the IMF and WTO - have more or less been a continued fucking of the developing nations, to the financial benefit of the US.
  • tim wood
    8
    Found online: https://history.state.gov/milestones/1921-1936/dawes


    The Dawes Plan, the Young Plan, German Reparations, and Inter-allied War Debts
    Introduction

    In the years following the First World War, issues of debt repayment and reparations troubled relations between the Allies and the now defeated Germany. The U.S.-sponsored Dawes and Young Plans offered a possible solution to these challenges.

    At the end of the First World War, the victorious European powers demanded that Germany compensate them for the devastation wrought by the four-year conflict, for which they held Germany and its allies responsible. Unable to agree upon the amount that Germany should pay at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and the other Allies established a Reparation Commission to settle the question. In the spring of 1921, the Commission set the final bill at 132 billion gold marks, approximately $31.5 billion. When Germany defaulted on a payment in January 1923, France and Belgium occupied the Ruhr in an effort to force payment. Instead, they met a government-backed campaign of passive resistance. Inflation in Germany, which had begun to accelerate in 1922, spiraled into hyperinflation. The value of the German currency collapsed; the battle over reparations had reached an impasse.

    U.S. Loans to Allied Powers

    Meanwhile, a second wartime financial issue was causing tension among the former co-belligerents. While the United States had little interest in collecting reparations from Germany, it was determined to secure repayment of the more than $10 billion it had loaned to the Allies over the course of the war. Time and again, Washington rejected calls to cancel these debts in the name of the common wartime cause; it also resisted efforts to link reparations to inter-allied war debts. In 1922, London made this link explicit in the Balfour Note, which stated that it would seek reparations and wartime debt repayments from its European allies equal to its debt to the United States. That same year, Congress created the United States War Debt Commission to negotiate repayment plans, on concessionary terms, with the 17 countries that had borrowed money from the United States.

    The Dawes Plan

    In late 1923, with the European powers stalemated over German reparations, the Reparation Commission formed a committee to review the situation. Headed by Charles G. Dawes (Chicago banker, former Director of the Bureau of the Budget, and future Vice President), the committee presented its proposal in April 1924. Under the Dawes Plan, Germany’s annual reparation payments would be reduced, increasing over time as its economy improved; the full amount to be paid, however, was left undetermined. Economic policy making in Berlin would be reorganized under foreign supervision and a new currency, the Reichsmark, adopted. France and Belgium would evacuate the Ruhr and foreign banks would loan the German government $200 million to help encourage economic stabilization. U.S. financier J. P. Morgan floated the loan on the U.S. market, which was quickly oversubscribed. Over the next four years, U.S. banks continued to lend Germany enough money to enable it to meet its reparation payments to countries such as France and the United Kingdom. These countries, in turn, used their reparation payments from Germany to service their war debts to the United States. In 1925, Dawes was a co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of his plan’s contribution to the resolution of the crisis over reparations.

    The Young Plan

    In the autumn of 1928, another committee of experts was formed, this one to devise a final settlement of the German reparations problem. In 1929, the committee, under the chairmanship of Owen D. Young, the head of General Electric and a member of the Dawes committee, proposed a plan that reduced the total amount of reparations demanded of Germany to 121 billion gold marks, almost $29 billion, payable over 58 years. Another loan would be floated in foreign markets, this one totaling $300 million. Foreign supervision of German finances would cease and the last of the occupying troops would leave German soil. The Young Plan also called for the establishment of a Bank for International Settlements, designed to facilitate the payment of reparations.

    The advent of the Great Depression doomed the Young Plan from the start. Loans from U.S. banks had helped prop up the German economy until 1928; when these loans dried up, Germany’s economy floundered. In 1931, as the world sunk ever deeper into depression, a one-year moratorium on all debt and reparation payments was declared at the behest of President Herbert Hoover; an effort to renew the moratorium the following year failed. At the Lausanne Conference in 1932, European nations agreed to cancel their reparation claims against Germany, save for a final payment. After the November 1932 election of Franklin D. Roosevelt, France and the United Kingdom resurrected the link between reparations and war debts, tying their Lausanne Conference pledge to cancel their claims against Germany to the cancellation of their debts to the United States. The United States would not accept the proposal. By mid-1933, all European debtor nations except Finland had defaulted on their loans from the United States.

    Nevertheless, the Dawes and Young Plans were important U.S. efforts that had lasting consequences. Coming so soon after the U.S. rejection of the Treaty of Versailles and the League of Nations, the Dawes and Young Plans were significant instances of U.S. reengagement with European affairs. The Young Plan also had a more lasting effect: the Bank for International Settlements, or BIS, continues to operate to this day as a forum for central bank consultation and cooperation. The United States’ experience with inter-allied war debts continued to influence its foreign policy for years to come; this influence is evident in the Johnson Act in 1934, the Neutrality Acts of the 1930s, and the Lend-Lease program in the Second World War.
  • 180 Proof
    41
    Yeah, I'm quite familiar with USAID's deliberate under/maldevelopment effects on developing nations which has not been all that different from Federal strategic (multi-modal) neglect-discrimination in housing, education, healthcare, banking, policing, pollution, farming, labor organising, etc of nonwhite majority urban areas and counties all over the US since the thirties at least. Empire ("divide & control" oppression) begins at home after all.
  • frank
    10
    Every U.S. administration from 1917 through the Roosevelt era employed the strategy of compelling repayment of these war debts, above all by BritainStreetlightX

    The British could have defaulted. The US wouldn't have been able to compel repayment, so I don't see his point. Was the US just supposed to hemorrhage cash onto the Allies for the fun of it?
  • StreetlightX
    58
    Ah yes, the 'ol "I am completely and utterly ignorant about this topic so here's a cut n' paste from a propaganda website which I found after half a minute of frantically Googling in order to defend my shitty country which was complicit in prompting the worst and most devesting war in the history of the planet". But since you're in the thick of it now, here's what the oh-so-benevolent Dawes plan yielded in practice:

    "Germany was burdened with a sum calculated to reimburse the Allies for most of the damage wrought during the war, a sum that exceeded the total value of Germany’s corporate assets. It simply lacked the resources to provide the Allies with the funds necessary to amortize their debts to the United States and to each other. As Snowden (Phillip, Chancellor of the Exchequer -SX ) noted: 'When the funding arrangements which America had made with her European debtors fully mature she will be receiving approximately £120,000,000 [$600 million] a year on account of these debts. The most sanguine expectation of the yield of German reparations is not more than £50,000,000 [$250 million] a year, though the Dawes scheme provides for an eventual payment of £125,000,000 [$625 million] a year. But no authority believes that Germany will ever be able to pay a sum approaching the latter figure. Therefore, what all this amounts to is that America is going to take the whole of the German reparations and probably an equal sum in addition. This is not a bad arrangement for a country that entered the war with “No indemnities, and no material gain” emblazoned upon its banners'.

    ... Despite these facts, the U.S. Treasury persistently refused to consider its scheduled repayments and interest as being in any way contingent upon the receipt of German reparations by the Allied Powers. Britain therefore had to turn to France and Germany to raise the funds with which to pay its war debts to the United States. France had only Germany to turn to, and marched into the Saar in 1921 to take in kind what it could not obtain in cash. It was a period in which the most extortionate of nationalistic acts were inspired by frustration at the economic situation imposed upon the world by the United States."

    As for the Young plan, which arrived DOA just in time for the onset of the great depression, it was effectively more diplomatic window dressing at extorting Europe for money it could not conceivably pay. And your own source notes American intransience at tying the cancellation of war debts to financial relief form the US: "After the November 1932 election of Franklin D. Roosevelt, France and the United Kingdom resurrected the link between reparations and war debts, tying their Lausanne Conference pledge to cancel their claims against Germany to the cancellation of their debts to the United States. The United States would not accept the proposal. By mid-1933, all European debtor nations except Finland had defaulted on their loans from the United States". And lend lease for WWII was a fucking joke too, but no doubt you'd have to scrabble to do some last minute Googling in order to know what in the world that was or how to even talk about it. Maybe you can find another propaganda website to copy and paste from.
  • StreetlightX
    58
    Was the US just supposed to hemorrhage cash onto the Allies for the fun of it?frank

    You mean: was the US just supposed to give up it's cash cow which had yielded over 3 times in repayments on interest than the principal of its loan? And yeah sure, Britain could have just defaulted, it's not like defaulting would have put Britain in a bigger economic hole than it already was despite acting as a pure agent of financial transfer to the US, right?

    Moral of the story: the US held Europe financially hostage because it is a shithole country, and WWII was the result of its gangsterism.
  • 180 Proof
    41
    "Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity." ~Hanlon's Razor

    Moral of the story: the US held Europe financially hostage because it is a shithole country, and WWII was the result of its gangsterism.StreetlightX
    Hold on. Why didn't these imperialist powers, which themselves had gladly enjoined The Great War that Kaiser's Reich had precipitated, not tell the US to fuck off for this extortion-among-friends (i.e. "gangsterism") by either (1) negotiating much more manageable terms or (2) defaulting outright to let the devil take the hindmost, as they'd say?

    Sounds to me like these insolvent colonial Empires (e.g. Great Britain, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Italy, Russia, etc) had used their American creditor/extortionist as an excuse just to punish Germany and grind their military defeat down further into a crushing depressionary disaster. Yeah, I haven't read Hudson yet but maybe you can summarized how a handful of Empires still flush with colonial possessions and robust navies were "compelled against their sovereign interests" to submit to the comparatively new imperial kid on the block's threat(s?) to 'call their notes'.

    I've been a financing & regulatory paralegal in banking for decades (and have read my share of critical economic & financial histories of "empire") but I'm confused as to how the US's apparent lack of leverage or enforceability had made the US the decisive, even culpable, driver to [ ... ] and subsequently WWII. Same as the US being the world's largest debtor state for decades – who the hell is gonna 'call our note' without destroying themselves? It's the old financial adage: don't lend to any debtor so much that you can't afford for him to default (my words, I can't remember how the maxim actually goes, but that's the gist of it going back as far the Medici Bank). Yeah, the creditor took advantage of the debtors' disastrous militarism but I fail see how the ensuing catastrophic consequences were the creditor's fault alone, or even principally. (Besides, it's like blaming China's illicit fentanyl trade for the opioid epidemic kicked-off by Big Pharma here in the US.) :chin:

    So what, SLX, am I (& @tim woods) missing?

    (I woke up in the wee hours and checked this thread which required a response so I could back to bed. I'll reply to your replay some time later today US east coast time (Atlanta, GA)).
  • StreetlightX
    58
    Hold on. Why didn't these imperialist powers, which themselves had gladly enjoined The Great War that Kaiser's Reich had precipitated, not tell the US to fuck off for this extortion-among-friends (i.e. "gangsterism") by either (1) negotiating much more manageable terms or (2) defaulting outright to let the devil take the hindmost, as they'd say?180 Proof

    In point of fact they did default - or rather, they simply stopped paying, and the whole issue was held in abeyance, at least until after WWII. But only after having moved proverbial mountains to service the debt, and having implored an indifferent and callous America to do something, anything, to ease the burden. Yet the US did the very opposite: it ratcheted up tariffs which effectively closed the US market - the only market not utterly devastated by war - to European producers ("free trade" my ass), while at the same time allowing both interest rates to rise - entailing massive capital flight from Europe to the US - and the dollar to go into free fall, making purchases out of Europe economically unviable.

    And this is to say nothing about the fact that the (1) US loan terms were far more relaxed with Germany than they were with its own supposed 'Allies' in France and England, and (2) the US even entered WWI itself to guarantee continental orders on US manufacturing, and that (3) the Dawes and Young plans that @tim wood copy pasted were effectively restructuring efforts to allow private US capital to get in on the action from which they were not yet a part of. But these are minor details (some of which can be found in Radhika Desai's Geopolitical Economy, along with Hudson's book). In any case, post-default, without an external reason to work together, the European continent fractured as each went into it alone, with every other country raising protectionist barriers on every other, while arming themselves to the teeth as autarky become the order of the day.

    Europe is certainly the opposite of blameless - they were both vindictive and stupid in their dealings with Germany and the US respectively - but the point of this digression was to respond to Tim's self-serving, historically fanciful idea that the US somehow stepped into the war out of the goodness of its blessed heart without which I would apparently not be speaking English. Regardless of whether or not Hudson overstates US complicity, it is undoubtable that US actions were a heavy spur to the most destructive war that ever took place on the face of the planet - so far. In any case it's worth remembering the moral of the story which is that the US is a despicable state responsible for global misery on a scale never been seen before with a legacy stretching back for more than a century. And as Niel Davidson put it, the only reason the US were not busy imperializing the globe earlier was because they were too busy genociding its native population as it imperialized its own "local" space.
  • frank
    10
    Regardless of whether or not Hudson overstates US complicity, it is undoubtable that US actions were a heavy spur to the most destructive war that ever took place on the face of the planet -StreetlightX

    Hudson is a fan of Jubilee style debt forgiveness. He wrote an article for the WSJ about it. He may be right.

    I'm not sure what kind of social apparatus would be required to execute it though.
  • StreetlightX
    58
    He wrote an article for the WSJ about it.frank

    Yeah, I remember reading that when I came out. I'm pretty sure I even linked it here at some point. They're a great idea, but even then they would be attacks on the symptom, not the cause - which is capitalism.
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