• Isaac
    9.1k
    Which position, again?Olivier5

    Your support for continued war. That Ukraine ought (not 'will', 'ought') to regain their lost territory by military means.

    More importantly, that others who disagree are so mistaken that the only rational explanation for their position is that they are pro-Russia, or Putin supporters, or even actually work for the FSB.

    It's the latter I'm most interested in. The grounds on which you find alternative views so untenable.
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    You cannot process evidence, though, so there'd be no point in giving it to you.Olivier5

    Well then don't give it to me. Give it to all the other people reading the thread. After all...

    Uninformed opinions have zero value; and when taken as facts, they even have negative value (are detrimental).Olivier5

    ...so we'd best rectify that.
  • Manuel
    3k
    Uninformed opinions have zero value; and when taken as facts, they even have negative value (are detrimental). So please stop putting out your uninformed opinion as if they were facts. Try to think before you post, and challenge yourself a bit.Olivier5

    This applies to yourself too. As for evidence, there is a lot of it, which has been posted here by many members, including most importantly, NATO's decision to not implement a No-Fly Zone.

    I am aware that my "side" is effectively saying that Ukraine is going to have to give up more land. That's not a palatable view, but I happen to think it is the least harmful one. So maybe it can be considered a challenge to myself, whatever that means.

    Rest assured that no one is gambling a nuclear war. Biden has told Putin that nukes should not be considered, and Putin has said that nukes are not being considered.Olivier5

    There aren't any assurances in politics, despite the rhetoric.
  • neomac
    630
    That's not a palatable viewManuel

    Why do you think it's not a palatable view?
  • Manuel
    3k


    That quite probably Ukraine will lose, not only Crimea (which has been more or less taken for granted by the rest of the world), but also these new "liberated cities". I do not know where the borders will be finally established, but I think this is something that Ukraine will be forced to concede.

    I hope I am wrong though.
  • neomac
    630


    You wrote:
    my "side" is effectively saying that Ukraine is going to have to give up more land. That's not a palatable view, but I happen to think it is the least harmful one.Manuel

    My question is: why do you think that "Ukraine is going to have to give up more land" is not a palatable view? Don't you think that "Ukraine is going to have to sacrifice more lives to have a chance of regaining lands" is not a palatable view either? Yet Ukrainians seem to find sacrificing or risking their people's life for an uncertain but desirable outcome (namely fighting to free their lands) more palatable than conceding lands. So what is making conceding lands instead of sacrificing people to free lands so unpalatable?
  • Olivier5
    6k
    As for evidence, there is a lot of it, which has been posted here by many members, including most importantly, NATO's decision to not implement a No-Fly Zone.Manuel

    Superpowers are perfectly capable of losing a war without using nukes. It has hapened before. Or did the USSR use nuclear weapons against Afghanistan? Did the US use nukes against Vietnam?

    I am aware that my "side" is effectively saying that Ukraine is going to have to give up more land. That's not a palatable view, but I happen to think it is the least harmful one.Manuel

    That would be what you are saying, and I congratulate you for your clarity and frankness. But I am not sure that this message is representative of anybody else on "your side", or that there is such a thing as "your side". Others have been more ambiguous.
  • Manuel
    3k
    So what is making conceding lands instead of sacrificing people to free lands so unpalatable?neomac

    Well, it's both at the moment. People are being killed and land has been stolen (though some of it has been taken back for the moment). The issue you are pointing to, namely sacrificing "people for an uncertain... outcome", is less problematic from a narrative perspective, because they are fighting against an aggressor for dignity's sake.

    As I see it, by arguing that Russia will end up with a portion (if not all of it) of the seized territory, it is pointless to let civilians die with no realistic hope of retaining such lands. I don't see this as a good reason for dying or being killed.

    Not to mention the specter of escalation, which would involve everybody else.



    Yeah yeah, these cases have been mentioned in this thread several times already, I'm surprised you haven't seen them. Afghanistan and Vietnam are quite different given the context and the importance of the countries involved.

    And speaking of "defeat" in the case of Vietnam is rather misleading.
  • Olivier5
    6k
    I don;t think they were different in any significant manner. You are welcome to try and make a case that they were. if you have time to waste.

    In my opinion, it is absurd to fear a Russian defeat in Ukraine, as you seem to do, on the ground that they will go nuclear if they lose. That idea implies that all non-nuclear nations must always agree to the will of nuclear nations.
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    it is absurd to fear a Russian defeat in Ukraine, as you seem to do, on the ground that they will go nuclear if they lose. That idea implies that all non-nuclear nations must always agree to the will of nuclear nations.Olivier5

    Why are your only two options total military defeat or submission to their will? Has the concept of negotiations passed you by entirely?
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    Superpowers are perfectly capable of losing a war without using nukes. It has hapened before. Or did the USSR use nuclear weapons against Afghanistan? Did the US use nukes against Vietnam?Olivier5

    What happened to...

    Each case is unique. History is not done in a laboratory with interchangeable mice, history is not replicable, and hence the course of history cannot be predicted. Nobody can tell with certainty, faced with situation X, that "based on what history tells us, the right move now is Y", because there never was in history a case that was exactly similar to X.Olivier5

    Suddenly history become all important again now it backs up your position. The case not so "unique" anymore, now it suits you to see it as the same.

    I mean, at least wait a full page before completely reversing your argument to suit your pro-US narrative.
  • neomac
    630
    The Russians invade (see? we told you! NATO is to blame), Russia captures nearly a third of Ukraine (Kyiv in 3 days, let Putin have it!), Russia stalls (don’t help Ukraine, we are prolonging the war), Ukraine goes on the counter-offensive (Putin is being backed into a corner! let him have Ukraine or else… NUKES!), Russia annexes Ukrainian territory (Putin is now committed and will never back down, let’s not escalate this), Russia mobilizes (see! escalation! we warned you! Ukraine will lose!), Ukraine liberates Kherson (Putin is losing, and therefore is even more dangerous now than ever, let him have Ukraine), Ukrainian missile accidentally strays into Poland (there it is, the escalation is here! risks! we must be careful… and let Putin have Ukraine).
    https://slantchev.wordpress.com/2022/11/17/it-does-not-matter-what-happens-putin-must-be-given-a-slice-of-ukraine-walt-in-fp/
  • neomac
    630
    The issue you are pointing to, namely sacrificing "people for an uncertain... outcome", is less problematic from a narrative perspective, because they are fighting against an aggressor for dignity's sake.Manuel

    What does dignity have to do with land to you? Consider the case of, Kurds and Palestinians, they are fighting against much greater regional foreign powers for having a land internationally acknowledged to them and sovereign (which never happened) for generations. Do they have any chance to win for something they "never" had? How many lives is their fight worth?

    As I see it, by arguing that Russia will end up with a portion (if not all of it) of the seized territory, it is pointless to let civilians die with no realistic hope of retaining such landsManuel

    The ~9 year Soviet-Afghan war caused between 6.5%–11.5% of Afghanistan's 1979 population of 13.5 million is estimated to have perished in the conflict. The war caused grave destruction in Afghanistan (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet%E2%80%93Afghan_War) what were the chances for the Afghans to win a war against the second strongest army in the world of a state with nuclear weapons? What was that chance at the beginning of the war, in the middle of the war, and by the end of the war? Finally the Soviet Union withdraw and the Soviets' failure in the war is thought to be a contributing factor to the fall of the Soviet Union (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet%E2%80%93Afghan_War)
  • Olivier5
    6k
    I keep being amazed at how confused you can be, and then I keep remembering myself that you probably just pretend to be confused; i.e. you're trolling.

    As regards the study of history and its place in geopolitical analysis, the way I see it in my non-determinist, anti-historicist Popperian way, historical precedents are useful to show the range of possibilities, the range of potential outcome in a given situation, but they do not constrain that range. History does not repeat itself, it is unpredictable.

    IOW, history can tell you that X is a possibility, and has in the past happened after Y, so if you do Y now, there is a possibility of X happening. What history cannot tell you is things like: "X will certainly happen as a result to Y". Historian have no crystal ball.

    So, in our case, it is a fact that superpowers have lost wars without using nukes before. Therefore such a thing is historically possible. So if Russia loses to Ukraine, there is certainly a possibility that it will not use nukes. It is also a fact that no superpower faced with an embarassing defeat against a smaller nation, has ever resorted to nukes before. So one can possibly say that "there is no historical precedent for Russia nuking Ukraine." But one cannot say for certain, based on a historical analysis, that Russia will not use nukes in Ukraine. And there is zero historical precedent to say that Russia will certainly use nukes in Ukraine.

    But perhaps these nuances are a bit too sophisticated for you.
  • neomac
    630
    Slantchev's blog (https://slantchev.wordpress.com/) is plenty of good reads against the pundits (e.g. Mearshemier, Walt, Kupchan) cited by the pro-Russians. Among others.
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    one cannot say for certain, based on a historical analysis, that Russia will not use nukes in Ukraine. And there is zero historical precedent to say that Russia will certainly use nukes in Ukraine.Olivier5

    So? Who did you think needed telling that?

    What, in @Manuel's post gave you the impression he thought Russia either must use nukes or must not?

    It was referred to as...

    the specter of escalationManuel

    ...and your counterargument was that it was...

    absurdOlivier5

    Your evidence from history contradicts neither and supports neither.
  • Manuel
    3k
    What does dignity have to do with land to you? Consider the case of, Kurds and Palestinians, they are fighting against much greater regional foreign powers for having a land internationally acknowledged to them and sovereign (which never happened) for generations. Do they have any chance to win for something they "never" had? How many lives is their fight worth?neomac

    We are getting side-tracked from the origin of the comment:

    The point of my original comment was that Olivier was suggesting that I am presenting a view that has "no evidence" in its favor: that a nuclear armed country like Russia would accept humiliation at these scales given all that has taken place since this war began.

    Hence, I should "challenge" myself. Because for some unexplained reason, if you don't support the continuation of this war by "supporting Ukraine", then one isn't challenging oneself.

    So this is how it is: if you fall in line with Western Propaganda (US, EU, British, Australian), you are being brave, support democracy and are against dictatorship.

    If you disagree and think this war should end now, then one is a Putin Supporter and a sympathizer for dictators.

    That out of the way, let's go to your examples:

    By now the Palestinian cause is widely recognized, up until the mid-early 2000's, if you supported Palestine, you were a terrorist sympathizer. Do they have a chance to get a two-state solution? Israel is uninterested and is instead stealing everything of value in the West Bank. What options do they have? They could try and change Israeli society from the inside through the Arab parties - unlikely to happen but it's an option.

    Or they could keep forcing for a two-state solution, which is what is recognized by international law. Regardless of how they act, they will be killed, as can be seen almost every day in Israeli news. It makes sense for them to get a state, if only to be able to live a semi normal life.

    The Kurds have been betrayed by everybody at one point or another. They do have a quite advanced society, which merits autonomy. Will they get it? Who knows. These topics deserve whole threads not brief comments.

    what were the chances for the Afghans to win a war against the second strongest army in the world of a state with nuclear weapons? What was that chance at the beginning of the war, in the middle of the war, and by the end of the war? Finally the Soviet Union withdraw and the Soviets' failure in the war is thought to be a contributing factor to the fall of the Soviet Union (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet%E2%80%93Afghan_War)neomac

    Afghanistan has been fiendishly difficult to conquer for hundreds of years, we also see how they managed to get rid of a much larger US army, never mind the Soviet one.

    But on to the important issue, what was there in Afghanistan than the Soviet Union cared enough about such that they would resort to nuclear war? Did "the West" sanction the Soviet Union for going into Afghanistan? Did the West say that victory for them means that the Soviet Union cannot win this war?

    Was the global economy in a fritz because of Soviet war in Afghanistan?

    No - these are quite different times. The stakes are much higher in all respects.
  • Olivier5
    6k
    So? Who did you think needed telling that?Isaac

    You of course, eternally confused as you are.
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    You of course, eternally confused as you are.Olivier5

    Then why did you post it in reply to @Manuel?
  • Manuel
    3k


    My re-involvement here was occasioned by a silly remark made by Christoff about people wanting the war to stop being labeled "Putinistas" or something like that.

    Olivier replied to that, then it took off. I needn't have - you are more than doing enough presenting a coherent position that seeks to de-escalate, none of this macho-bullshit.

    I have trouble understanding the war aims of the people who are argue "for Ukraine." We will see, maybe by January, how this pans out....
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    you are more than doing enough presenting a coherent position that seeks to de-escalate, none of this macho-bullshit.Manuel

    Thanks. I often wonder if anyone is even reading what I write.

    I have trouble understanding the war aims of the people who are argue "for Ukraine."Manuel

    Yes. It's what keeps me here, my interest in what motivates such a position and, more importantly, the methods employed to maintain it against contrary arguments. Endlessly fascinating, but more than a little disturbing too.
  • Olivier5
    6k
    As a matter of facts I posted it in response to one of your posts.
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    As a matter of facts I posted it in response to one of your posts.Olivier5

    This...

    Superpowers are perfectly capable of losing a war without using nukes. It has hapened before. Or did the USSR use nuclear weapons against Afghanistan? Did the US use nukes against Vietnam?Olivier5

    ...is in reply to https://thephilosophyforum.com/discussion/comment/758255.

    If all your historical examples show is that it's possible for a superpower to lose a war without using nukes, then they are utterly redundant. Nothing in what @Manuel argued suggested an illusion that it was impossible for a superpower to lose a war without using nukes. The argument was about the likelihood.
  • Olivier5
    6k
    The argument was about the likelihood.Isaac

    If there’s no historical precedent for it, how likely can it be?
  • Isaac
    9.1k
    If there’s no historical precedent for it, how high can this probability be?Olivier5

    As high as the causal factors suggest. Events don't happen because history books dictate they should. Events happen as a consequence of their immediate causes. Expert analysts consider the current set of immediate circumstances to present a small but significant risk of nuclear escalation.

    The fact that your analysis is limited to two historical examples is the reason why you are not counted among that body of experts.
  • Olivier5
    6k
    The fact that your analysis is limited to two historical examples is the reason why you are not counted among that body of experts.Isaac

    LOL. How could you possibly know that I’m not one of ‘them experts’, for one, and that the reason is precisely that my analysis is limited to two historical examples, for two? This kind of cheap shot is precisely why I will never take you seriously though.

    Expert analysts consider the current set of immediate circumstances to present a small but significant risk of nuclear escalation.Isaac

    My analysis is that a very small risk of nuclear escalation exists, additional to what this risk has historically been before February. This risk has evidently already been factored in by NATO members, as evidenced by the lack of allied support for a brand new Ukrainian airforce for instance. That decision was already some form of yielding to the superpower nuclear status of Russia. I think it was enough. In fact I wonder if we shouldn’t revisit the issue of some no-fly-zone, given the current abuse of civilian targets by Russia.
  • jorndoe
    2.3k
    Talks could start from UN (charter, votes), take it from there, see where it goes.

    A reasonable and fair settlement, or starting point perhaps, could be ...

    • Ukraine not to join NATO
    • Ukraine to allow UN/similar inspectors to check for atrocities
    • Ukraine and Russia to come to agreement like or based on the Kharkiv Pact
    • Ukraine otherwise intact, free, sovereign — and not bombed
    • Russian military personnel in Ukraine to go home
    • any Ukrainians taken to Russia to be recorded and (allowed) to return home, first and foremost children and political prisoners
    • some sort of guarantees to be signed ✓ for all to see
    • ☮

    This more or less meets stated demands. If someone wishes something else, then it can be stated, justified, negotiated, whatever. Maybe no-NATO isn't enough? Could add, say, no UK/US/Romanian/French military installations in Ukraine...?

    To be investigated (doesn't seem like someone you'd want to surrender to):

    Some Russian commanders encouraged sexual violence, says lawyer advising Kyiv
    — Joanna Plucinska, Anthony Deutsch, Stefaniia Bern · Reuters · Nov 23, 2022
    • via Business Insider, MSN, The Jerusalem Post
    (↑ there are other concerns of relevance here)

    Some sort of rebuilding/reparations discussions would be appropriate:

    Russian attacks force shutdown of all Ukrainian nuclear power plants
    — Daniel Stewart · News360 · Nov 23, 2022
    Putin spreads 'terror and murder' across Ukraine with new missile blitz leaving cities without power and claiming lives in Kyiv after newborn was killed in overnight maternity ward strike
    — Rachael Bunyan · Daily Mail · Nov 23, 2022
    Russia launches new wave of missile strikes across Ukraine
    — The Kyiv Independent · Nov 23, 2022

    Admittedly, this may not look all that good for Putin's Russia. Regardless, I'd say take it to the diplomats. Besides, if they were ever serious about their parts of the stated demands, then they can't dismiss such a proposal with a handwave. Without getting talks going, all bets are off. Get things on the table.
  • Paine
    862
    Some sort of rebuilding/reparations discussions would be appropriate:jorndoe

    That component is where the support of sanctions goes beyond deals made about territory and people. With the ongoing campaign to destroy residential infrastructure, Russia does not seem to be concerned about racking up costs in that regard to achieve their goals. Whatever deal might be made between the combatants, the Russians seem to think they can avoid some kind of Treaty of Versailles.
  • jorndoe
    2.3k
    their goalsPaine

    ... could be put on the table in talks. :up: (If they don't feel too embarrassed?)

    The reports in the post are from one day. Kind of obscene.

    European Parliament declares Russia a state sponsor of terrorism
    — Siebold, Trevelyan, Hunder, Meijer, Strauss, Baum, Macfie · Reuters · Nov 23, 2022
    • via MSN
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