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The Middle East Thread: Now Featuring a Primer in the OP

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Posts

  • dojangodojango Registered User
    RedTide wrote:
    dojango wrote:
    I wouldn't think that you'd need a fancy navy to shut down the straits of hormuz; I imagine a few motorboats with RPGs could mess up enough tankers that marine insurers wouldn't let tankers through any more.

    I think if the US navy decided that the strait needed more artificial reefs and moved in it wouldn't be overly difficult to counter such attacks or just as likely USS Cole scenarios. Being a small area by virtue makes it easy for Iran to control. We can control it better.

    Possibly. Iran does have a large coastline from which to launch attacks and then disappear back into the civilian fleet. Also, land to ship missles... a quick wikipedia search indicates that during the Iran-Iraq war they used those in addition to naval vessels... and missle tech has no doubt improved much since then, while their ships and planes are probably useless.

    Ultimately, I guess, there's only one way to be sure, to actually go ahead and try it.

  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    Kana wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Just so we're clear, Iran has spent the last 40 years using perceived outside aggression as a tool for societal cohesion. Engaging in actual aggression is the last thing you wanna do.

    And it's not as if it's been just "perceived" after all, modern Iran started out by overthrowing their US-backed dictatorship. Iran may be fairly bad guys, but that doesn't mean we're the good guys either.

    And lets not forget the recent explosions at Iranian research centers. Mysterious death of a scientist as well...

    I sometimes wonder if the current government has essentially decided on covert sabotage and black ops.

    Better than overt war.

    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    dojango wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    dojango wrote:
    I wouldn't think that you'd need a fancy navy to shut down the straits of hormuz; I imagine a few motorboats with RPGs could mess up enough tankers that marine insurers wouldn't let tankers through any more.

    I think if the US navy decided that the strait needed more artificial reefs and moved in it wouldn't be overly difficult to counter such attacks or just as likely USS Cole scenarios. Being a small area by virtue makes it easy for Iran to control. We can control it better.

    Possibly. Iran does have a large coastline from which to launch attacks and then disappear back into the civilian fleet. Also, land to ship missles... a quick wikipedia search indicates that during the Iran-Iraq war they used those in addition to naval vessels... and missle tech has no doubt improved much since then, while their ships and planes are probably useless.

    Ultimately, I guess, there's only one way to be sure, to actually go ahead and try it.

    Lets hope it does not come to that. We've been looking less like bad guys lately. I like that. (Except for Pakistanis who are pissed about the whole massive "Take no-prisoners and kill everyone we can" anti-terrorism program we've been running).

    Rchanen on
    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • RedTideRedTide Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Economic pressure, cultural pressure, pressure on allies, incentives, etc.

    We're doing this right now, in a very big way. We just passed a new law in our defense budget that basically means we blackball anyone who does business with Irans central bank (ie buys oil from them). The EU is basically trying to push a resolution to stop buying their oil. Its basically why Iran is threatening to blockade in the first place.

    RedTide on
  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    RedTide wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Economic pressure, cultural pressure, pressure on allies, incentives, etc.

    We're doing this right now, in a very big way. We just passed a new law in our defense budget that basically means we blackball anyone who does business with Irans central bank (ie buys oil from them). The EU is basically trying to push a resolution to stop buying their oil. Its basically why Iran is threatening to blockade in the first place.

    Yeah, and even with Iran's saber rattling and our counter-rattling, its a lot cleaner than war.

    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • RedTideRedTide Registered User regular
    Rchanen wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Economic pressure, cultural pressure, pressure on allies, incentives, etc.

    We're doing this right now, in a very big way. We just passed a new law in our defense budget that basically means we blackball anyone who does business with Irans central bank (ie buys oil from them). The EU is basically trying to push a resolution to stop buying their oil. Its basically why Iran is threatening to blockade in the first place.

    Yeah, and even with Iran's saber rattling and our counter-rattling, its a lot cleaner than war.

    If the end result is 5 dollar a gallon gas (or more), expect things to deteriorate rather quickly.

  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    RedTide wrote:
    Rchanen wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Economic pressure, cultural pressure, pressure on allies, incentives, etc.

    We're doing this right now, in a very big way. We just passed a new law in our defense budget that basically means we blackball anyone who does business with Irans central bank (ie buys oil from them). The EU is basically trying to push a resolution to stop buying their oil. Its basically why Iran is threatening to blockade in the first place.

    Yeah, and even with Iran's saber rattling and our counter-rattling, its a lot cleaner than war.

    If the end result is 5 dollar a gallon gas (or more), expect things to deteriorate rather quickly.

    I would expect production to rise from other producers with spare capacity before that happens. Nobody is going to ignore that much profit.

    Actually read a WSJ article today about how even during the Iran-Iraq war, which featured quite a few raids in that particular strait, the oil still flowed.

    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • KanaKana Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Rchanen wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    Rchanen wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Economic pressure, cultural pressure, pressure on allies, incentives, etc.

    We're doing this right now, in a very big way. We just passed a new law in our defense budget that basically means we blackball anyone who does business with Irans central bank (ie buys oil from them). The EU is basically trying to push a resolution to stop buying their oil. Its basically why Iran is threatening to blockade in the first place.

    Yeah, and even with Iran's saber rattling and our counter-rattling, its a lot cleaner than war.

    If the end result is 5 dollar a gallon gas (or more), expect things to deteriorate rather quickly.

    I would expect production to rise from other producers with spare capacity before that happens. Nobody is going to ignore that much profit.

    Actually read a WSJ article today about how even during the Iran-Iraq war, which featured quite a few raids in that particular strait, the oil still flowed.

    There's a lot of doubt if they actually CAN increase productivity. Saudi Arabia keeps finding excuses not to do so, but there's a lot of reasons to think that the real reason is that their fields are already at peak production and they don't want to admit it. They might release some of their stockpile, but oil prices would definitely be going up no matter what - on speculation if nothing else.

    As far as the WSJ article: just a quick google search gives me this factoid from the BBC:
    Iran weakened by the revolution was invaded by Iraq in September 1980. By November, the combined oil production of the two countries was only one million barrels a day, 6.5m fewer barrels than the year before.

    It meant a worldwide reduction in crude oil production of 10%. The combination of the Iranian revolution and the Iran-Iraq war caused crude oil prices to more than double from $14 in 1978 to $35 in 1981.

    I would be very suspicious of trusting the Wall Street Journal about a topic like this

    Kana on
    History is an account, mostly false, of events, mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers, mostly knaves, and soldiers, mostly fools.
  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    Kana wrote:
    Rchanen wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    Rchanen wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Economic pressure, cultural pressure, pressure on allies, incentives, etc.

    We're doing this right now, in a very big way. We just passed a new law in our defense budget that basically means we blackball anyone who does business with Irans central bank (ie buys oil from them). The EU is basically trying to push a resolution to stop buying their oil. Its basically why Iran is threatening to blockade in the first place.

    Yeah, and even with Iran's saber rattling and our counter-rattling, its a lot cleaner than war.

    If the end result is 5 dollar a gallon gas (or more), expect things to deteriorate rather quickly.

    I would expect production to rise from other producers with spare capacity before that happens. Nobody is going to ignore that much profit.

    Actually read a WSJ article today about how even during the Iran-Iraq war, which featured quite a few raids in that particular strait, the oil still flowed.

    There's a lot of doubt if they actually CAN increase productivity. Saudi Arabia keeps finding excuses not to do so, but there's a lot of reasons to think that the real reason is that their fields are already at peak production and they don't want to admit it. They might release some of their stockpile, but oil prices would definitely be going up no matter what - on speculation if nothing else.

    As far as the WSJ article: just a quick google search gives me this factoid from the BBC:
    Iran weakened by the revolution was invaded by Iraq in September 1980. By November, the combined oil production of the two countries was only one million barrels a day, 6.5m fewer barrels than the year before.

    It meant a worldwide reduction in crude oil production of 10%. The combination of the Iranian revolution and the Iran-Iraq war caused crude oil prices to more than double from $14 in 1978 to $35 in 1981.

    I would be very suspicious of trusting the Wall Street Journal about a topic like this

    I should point out other producers includes Venezuela, Russia, Nigeria, etc. etc. etc. Yeah the Saudis do talk big and haven't had much to show for it lately, but they are not the only game in town. Libya could really use some of that sweet sweet market share about now...

    And one should be suspicious of the WSJ on anything. And dear Lord don't read the comments section online.

    As for that statistic from the BBC, that is interesting and good info, but part of me distrusts it. If the invasion started in 1980, why not take the 1980 price and compare it to the 1981 price? Why go 3 years back?

    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • dojangodojango Registered User
    edited December 2011
    It wasn't just the war that hurt oil prices, the revolution did as well, which started in '79.

    dojango on
  • HeraldSHeraldS Registered User regular
    Iran exports all their oil through the Hormutz Strait. They lose that money and their government runs out of cash real quick. Outside of actual all-out war the strait stays open.

  • HamurabiHamurabi Cambridge, MARegistered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Re: economic sanctions on Iran

    Dennis Ross (his shortcomings on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict notwithstanding) said something interesting on the subject during a lecture at Princeton that I think sheds some light on the inherent convoluted nature of international politics. This is briefly the chain of cause-and-effect he outlined (that I hope I'm not misremembering):
    • We and the EU impose a full embargo on trade with Iran
    • China steps in to fill the gap, buying Iranian oil and selling them cheap Chinese goods in return
    • Now we have to find some way to get China to play ball with the embargo
    • We turn to the Saudis because China buys a lot of oil from them, too
    • The Saudis have misgivings about jeopardizing their relationship with an important trading partner, or their own preconditions for playing ball, but they also share an interest in a non-nuclear Iran; their concern is that they're not sure how committed the US and EU are
    This is the aforementioned lecture by Ross. Feel free to correct me if I've misremembered anything.



    EDIT: It's around 23:00 that he gets into Iran. I fixed the line I hadn't completely remembered.

    Hamurabi on
  • ElkiElki GOBS OF PUKE!!! YES!!!!!!!Moderator, ClubPA mod
    'Saudis have concerns about their Shia populations'. I just love how American politicians and commentators just go right ahead and skip over the fact that the Saudi Royal Family is asshole-bigots central, and go straight to highlighting the benefits of being BFF with asshole-bigots.

  • DramDram Registered User regular
    Elki wrote:
    'Saudis have concerns about their Shia populations'. I just love how American politicians and commentators just go right ahead and skip over the fact that the Saudi Royal Family is asshole-bigots central, and go straight to highlighting the benefits of being BFF with asshole-bigots.

    That's the magic of propaganda, broseph.

  • ZephiranZephiran Registered User regular
    An America with a 5$ pricetag for each gallon of gasoline could get both ugly and interesting pretty quickly. Depending a bit on who's calling the shots in the legislative and executive branch we might either see a focus on domestic American oil production (which I doubt would help much) or a move towards alternative fuels like biodiesel or perhaps even pure electric (which I doubt would actually happen).

    First and foremost, would there be a call to end sanctions against Iran if gas prices got that high? Because I imagine that'd be a bitter pill to swallow for Reps and Dems alike, though if there's enough public pressure they might just do it anyway.

  • HamurabiHamurabi Cambridge, MARegistered User regular
    Elki wrote:
    'Saudis have concerns about their Shia populations'. I just love how American politicians and commentators just go right ahead and skip over the fact that the Saudi Royal Family is asshole-bigots central, and go straight to highlighting the benefits of being BFF with asshole-bigots.

    If nothing else, they have realized their vulnerability on that front, and have begun incorporating minority sects more and more into the state religious apparatus. It's kind of a limited program, though, akin to sectarian affirmative action.

  • xraydogxraydog Registered User regular
    The saddest part of this whole shitstorm is the fact that the world is dependent on liquid dead dinosaurs. I can't wait until the day where that's no longer the case and no one will care about that region any more.

  • HamurabiHamurabi Cambridge, MARegistered User regular
    xraydog wrote:
    The saddest part of this whole shitstorm is the fact that the world is dependent on liquid dead dinosaurs. I can't wait until the day where that's no longer the case and no one will care about that region any more.

    Some of us would still care! :P

    In any event, if all goes according to the oil monarchies' plans, they'd still be major players in global finance and trade, based on the investments they're making now to break into those markets. If they can recreate the success of Dubai in other places in the Gulf, I'd say they'll definitely stay relevant.

  • dojangodojango Registered User
    didn't Dubai have to get bailed out by Abu Dhabi recently?

    But yeah, turning your oil wealth into a diversified sovereign wealth fund should be priority #3 for the oil monarchies (behind keeping restive populations under control and siphoning off a comfortable living for themselves). Don't know how well they're managing it, however.

  • HamurabiHamurabi Cambridge, MARegistered User regular
    Dubai did in fact have to turn to Abu Dhabi for money, because most of their economy was based on global finance, and that obviously went down the drain in the fall of 2008. It reversed the power dynamic within the UAE; Abu Dhabi is the largest economy on the UAE by far (largely because they're the only Emirate with substantial quantities of oil, iirc), but they weren't able to bring Dubai to heel before the global financial crisis because Dubai was enjoying an immense boom period, and so wasn't economically reliant on Abu Dabhi like the other Emirates.

    Also: the diversification effort is an attempt to manage popular unrest, to some degree. Basically, the Gulf monarchies (and especially Saudi Arabia) can't create petro-jobs fast enough for their growing population, and so they need to both develop new petro industries and grow their non-oil sector. They have a three-pronged political-economic approach: diversification, privatization, and "Saudi-ization" (increasing the percentage of Saudis in the work force, as opposed to foreign workers). They've made more progress on the first two than on the third. The private sector is now 46% of the Saudi economy; 20 years ago, it was 20%. "Diversification" has really just meant moving downstream in the petro-chemical sector -- making more petro-chem products (cosmetics, petroleum jelly, plastics, etc.) themselves instead of just exporting the raw material. Saudi-ization has proven to be problematic; 88% of private sector jobs are still held by expatriates (from Pakistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, etc.), and unemployment among young men is very high. There just aren't enough public sector (read: oil) jobs for them.

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Just so we're clear, Iran has spent the last 40 years using perceived outside aggression as a tool for societal cohesion. Engaging in actual aggression is the last thing you wanna do.

    You make an important point here. A full on war against Iran will only cause them to close ranks. The issues Iranians have against their government notwithstanding, they have a very cohesive nation and will not appreciate being air-striked by Israel or the US. It will only give the government more excuses to crack down on the population and become even more weird and isolated. There is a very large appetite for reform in Iran (not revolution), but this would be largely crushed in the event of a war. Yet another reason I hope a war does not occur.

    HeraldS wrote:
    There's a lot of doubt if they actually CAN increase productivity. Saudi Arabia keeps finding excuses not to do so, but there's a lot of reasons to think that the real reason is that their fields are already at peak production and they don't want to admit it. They might release some of their stockpile, but oil prices would definitely be going up no matter what - on speculation if nothing else.

    Yup. They've said several times that they'll increase production.... and then they don't. I think they're a huge pack of liars, but even if they do have the capicity to increase production, what good will it do them? A higher price of oil is beneficial to any oil exporting nation. The Saudi's would be raking in the cash at this hypothetical 5 dollar a gallon price (which I think is an exaggeration, but makes a fine example).

    HeraldS wrote:
    Iran exports all their oil through the Hormutz Strait. They lose that money and their government runs out of cash real quick. Outside of actual all-out war the strait stays open.

    A nitpick, but not all their oil goes through the Hormuz Strait. There is a pipeline running into Turkey and I think there are a few others as well. Of course a huge amount of the oil does go through the strait, more than Iran can afford to lose in export dollars.

    [Tycho?] on
    ragesig.jpg

  • MarauderMarauder Registered User regular
    dojango wrote:
    RedTide wrote:
    dojango wrote:
    I wouldn't think that you'd need a fancy navy to shut down the straits of hormuz; I imagine a few motorboats with RPGs could mess up enough tankers that marine insurers wouldn't let tankers through any more.

    I think if the US navy decided that the strait needed more artificial reefs and moved in it wouldn't be overly difficult to counter such attacks or just as likely USS Cole scenarios. Being a small area by virtue makes it easy for Iran to control. We can control it better.

    Possibly. Iran does have a large coastline from which to launch attacks and then disappear back into the civilian fleet. Also, land to ship missles... a quick wikipedia search indicates that during the Iran-Iraq war they used those in addition to naval vessels... and missle tech has no doubt improved much since then, while their ships and planes are probably useless.

    Ultimately, I guess, there's only one way to be sure, to actually go ahead and try it.

    The Stennis just got buzzed by an Iranian surveillance plane, though to be fair, the Iranians dont tell you they also probably had a CAP F18 litterally flying up their ass the whole time.
    http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5hRKqnjODDYzN3ipTdWuVcEILjkwA?docId=CNG.008f37e075e8246666ba7f1fd81b17b7.4b1

    While I have no doubt the Iranians have some nice Soviet anti-ship missiles, and they are nothing to sneeze at, at that range. The issue being is that except for that transit through the Strait, they will never be that close to her again. Not to mention that all of those AEGIS and guided missile destroyers also have missile-to missile interceptor systems, and of course the final line of defense http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phalanx_CIWS

    What amuses/bemuses me the most is the Iranians (like most states in the their position) complete looney tunes reporting of the issues. Like the last line where they say it was a crack hacker team that brought down the RQ-170, when all evidence points to it either being malfuntion by the drone, or at most, an ECW plane intercepting it and interupting its communications....the "crack" technology of which has existed since Vietnam. I know its for the benfit of their own nationalist propaganda, because Iranian's have been even more jinoistic than even Americans, but still...anyone with an internet connection knows theyre full of shit.

    If it comes up, talk about your goals and how you plan to achieve them. It's better to hear that someone has a goal and is actively working towards them than that they are sitting at home jerking off and watching the Price Is Right.

    Hopefully not at the same time.
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Geeze, this is even starting to depress me. I hope technology has advanced by that point, but I'm really hoping some idiot frigate crew doesn't decide an Airbus full of families looks a lot more like a Fulcrum or a Mirage on an attack vector and kill a bunch of innocent people.

    Synthesis on
    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    Synthesis wrote:
    Geeze, this is even starting to depress me. I hope technology has advanced by that point, but I'm really hoping some idiot frigate crew doesn't decide an Airbus full of families looks a lot more like a Fulcrum or a Mirage on an attack vector and kill a bunch of innocent people.

    With tensions running at almost an all time high, and a huge amount of firepower in the region, such an incident is certainly possible -again.

    ragesig.jpg

  • CantidoCantido Registered User regular
    xraydog wrote:
    The saddest part of this whole shitstorm is the fact that the world is dependent on liquid dead dinosaurs. I can't wait until the day where that's no longer the case and no one will care about that region any more.

    We'll just sprout wings, duh.

    steam_sig.png
  • TheOrangeTheOrange Registered User regular
    It really pisses me off when people talk about where I live like its a virtual place with virtual people and problems. Its real to me guys.

    Some clearfications:
    -Saudi can up the production, but it isn't in our best economic interest. The reality is, oil isn't all in a single well, we exhauast and descover new wells monthly. Exploration is a bigger department of ARAMCO (government owned company, but with autonomus managment) then Extraction Operations.
    -'Shia' bashing has jumped a lot during 2004 and 2011, first was because of AlSader's Army in iraq while the other is because of Bahrain. One could argue that Saudi's sunni should be more loyal to Saudi's shia then to Iraqi's sunni; one would be ignorent of how sects work.
    -The unemployment rate in Saudi is a lot better then the US for college grads, somewhat worse for highschool students. This is due to college being free for most of the populace but acceptence is capped by grades.
    -Diversity has a long way to go, no export we have can even come close to oil.

  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    TheOrange wrote:
    It really pisses me off when people talk about where I live like its a virtual place with virtual people and problems. Its real to me guys.

    Some clearfications:
    -Saudi can up the production, but it isn't in our best economic interest. The reality is, oil isn't all in a single well, we exhauast and descover new wells monthly. Exploration is a bigger department of ARAMCO (government owned company, but with autonomus managment) then Extraction Operations.
    -'Shia' bashing has jumped a lot during 2004 and 2011, first was because of AlSader's Army in iraq while the other is because of Bahrain. One could argue that Saudi's sunni should be more loyal to Saudi's shia then to Iraqi's sunni; one would be ignorent of how sects work.
    -The unemployment rate in Saudi is a lot better then the US for college grads, somewhat worse for highschool students. This is due to college being free for most of the populace but acceptence is capped by grades.
    -Diversity has a long way to go, no export we have can even come close to oil.

    How are we supposed to talk about it? We don't live there. Most of us have never lived there/will never live there. Heck for most of the people on this board the most in-depth knowledge they will have of Saudi Arabia will be an Economist article. Maybe Foreign Affairs or some college course on "The Middle East".

    When you don't live in a place, talking about it is always going to be a bit virtual at the best of times. Its just the way people are. Things aren't real until they are happening to you. Every apocalypse is personal. To quote Max Payne.

    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    Also; there are like 5 other posters, in this thread, that are from 'there'

    'there' being the middle east

  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Burtletoy wrote:
    Also; there are like 5 other posters, in this thread, that are from 'there'

    'there' being the middle east

    Which would still put people with personal experience of the middle east in a minority even in this thread. Not to mention this subsection of the forum. Forget about the whole board.

    Its what people do. American posters generalize about Europe. European posters simplify problems in the US (especially our political system). There is always an oversimplification, a distancing, a lack of nuance and a reduction of the complexity of the problem.

    There are only two ways around this. 1) Intensive study of the situation. I mean "I wrote a thesis" level study. Hundreds of hours and dozens of books. You'll learn to have an appreciation for the complexity of what is going on in a region. You may not get all the information you need, but you'll see how complex things are. 2) Live there.

    If you have not done one of those two things then you are probably going to reduce the problem to its most simplistic terms and not count the impact of many competing factors on a complex and shifting situation.

    If you have a problem with that, then there is only one solution. Speak up. Make a post, clarify shit. If TheOrange does not like a post because he feels its treating Saudi Arabia or the middle east like SimCity, then he should quote it, clarify, expand, etc. Make his point known.

    I ain't against it. Hell I am for him doing that, raises the level of debate and makes this thread more informative. For instance I found his clarifications interesting.

    Rchanen on
    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • TheOrangeTheOrange Registered User regular
    xraydog wrote:
    The saddest part of this whole shitstorm is the fact that the world is dependent on liquid dead dinosaurs. I can't wait until the day where that's no longer the case and no one will care about that region any more.

    I'm mostly talking about things like this post, or an older one (which I couldn't find via search) where someone said something like "They deserve what happens to them" after quoting a batshit insane scholar that said "woman driving in Saudi will cause the loss of virgenity".

    I mean, I argued for OWS, gay marrige and other progressive movments and causes in the US against amarican friends and even changed the minds of few; I consider people affected in these movments/causes "real". While when some of you guys talk about our problems, there is a lot of "when can we get the hell out of there". I feel that its dehumanizing.

    I'm really not the type that gets on a soap box, this isn't my intention.

  • BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    TheOrange wrote:
    xraydog wrote:
    The saddest part of this whole shitstorm is the fact that the world is dependent on liquid dead dinosaurs. I can't wait until the day where that's no longer the case and no one will care about that region any more.

    I'm mostly talking about things like this post, or an older one (which I couldn't find via search) where someone said something like "They deserve what happens to them" after quoting a batshit insane scholar that said "woman driving in Saudi will cause the loss of virgenity".

    I mean, I argued for OWS, gay marrige and other progressive movments and causes in the US against amarican friends and even changed the minds of few; I consider people affected in these movments/causes "real". While when some of you guys talk about our problems, there is a lot of "when can we get the hell out of there". I feel that its dehumanizing.

    I'm really not the type that gets on a soap box, this isn't my intention.

    Well, yeah, but we say the same thing about Texas :)

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Rchanen wrote:
    Kana wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Just so we're clear, Iran has spent the last 40 years using perceived outside aggression as a tool for societal cohesion. Engaging in actual aggression is the last thing you wanna do.

    And it's not as if it's been just "perceived" after all, modern Iran started out by overthrowing their US-backed dictatorship. Iran may be fairly bad guys, but that doesn't mean we're the good guys either.

    And lets not forget the recent explosions at Iranian research centers. Mysterious death of a scientist as well...

    I sometimes wonder if the current government has essentially decided on covert sabotage and black ops.

    Better than overt war.

    I'm not trying to sound snarky or anything, and I'm not an expert on Tehran, but this smacks a little too much of an old James Bond movie plot or a modern video game hook, or even tin-foil hat conspiracy theories.

    Synthesis on
    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • ZephiranZephiran Registered User regular
    Synthesis wrote:
    Rchanen wrote:
    Kana wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Just so we're clear, Iran has spent the last 40 years using perceived outside aggression as a tool for societal cohesion. Engaging in actual aggression is the last thing you wanna do.

    And it's not as if it's been just "perceived" after all, modern Iran started out by overthrowing their US-backed dictatorship. Iran may be fairly bad guys, but that doesn't mean we're the good guys either.

    And lets not forget the recent explosions at Iranian research centers. Mysterious death of a scientist as well...

    I sometimes wonder if the current government has essentially decided on covert sabotage and black ops.

    Better than overt war.

    I'm not trying to sound snarky or anything, and I'm not an expert on Tehran, but this smacks a little too much of an old James Bond movie plot or a modern video game hook, or even tin-foil hat conspiracy theories.

    I just wanted to point out, even if those "accidents" were orchestrated the US might actually not be behind them. I'm personally more inclined to believe that Russias or Israels intelligence agencies might be doing some dirty work. Medvedev/ Putin definitely seem like the kind of guy/s who might actually do something like that.

    That doesn't really make it any less James Bond though, I have to admit. In fact it probably makes it even more so.

  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    Zephiran wrote:
    Synthesis wrote:
    Rchanen wrote:
    Kana wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Just so we're clear, Iran has spent the last 40 years using perceived outside aggression as a tool for societal cohesion. Engaging in actual aggression is the last thing you wanna do.

    And it's not as if it's been just "perceived" after all, modern Iran started out by overthrowing their US-backed dictatorship. Iran may be fairly bad guys, but that doesn't mean we're the good guys either.

    And lets not forget the recent explosions at Iranian research centers. Mysterious death of a scientist as well...

    I sometimes wonder if the current government has essentially decided on covert sabotage and black ops.

    Better than overt war.

    I'm not trying to sound snarky or anything, and I'm not an expert on Tehran, but this smacks a little too much of an old James Bond movie plot or a modern video game hook, or even tin-foil hat conspiracy theories.

    I just wanted to point out, even if those "accidents" were orchestrated the US might actually not be behind them. I'm personally more inclined to believe that Russias or Israels intelligence agencies might be doing some dirty work. Medvedev/ Putin definitely seem like the kind of guy/s who might actually do something like that.

    That doesn't really make it any less James Bond though, I have to admit. In fact it probably makes it even more so.

    The probability is that it is just coincidence. Occam's Razor and all that. You work at a weapons developement center, you get explosions. Sometimes people are not as careful as they should be. Screw ups happen. The murder could have been personal business and nothing to do with the scientists work.

    But the current President has definitely shown a willingness to use the "Shoot a guy in the head" option. So it is possible that it is some covert op.

    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
  • xraydogxraydog Registered User regular
    TheOrange wrote:
    xraydog wrote:
    The saddest part of this whole shitstorm is the fact that the world is dependent on liquid dead dinosaurs. I can't wait until the day where that's no longer the case and no one will care about that region any more.

    I'm mostly talking about things like this post, or an older one (which I couldn't find via search) where someone said something like "They deserve what happens to them" after quoting a batshit insane scholar that said "woman driving in Saudi will cause the loss of virgenity".

    I mean, I argued for OWS, gay marrige and other progressive movments and causes in the US against amarican friends and even changed the minds of few; I consider people affected in these movments/causes "real". While when some of you guys talk about our problems, there is a lot of "when can we get the hell out of there". I feel that its dehumanizing.

    I'm really not the type that gets on a soap box, this isn't my intention.


    That's totally not what I meant with that post. I should have elaborated.

    It's frustrating (i don't think that's the right word) to see regimes like Iran, in essence, holding the world hostage because of oil. It would be awesome if they didn't have that power.
    there is a lot of "when can we get the hell out of there"

    It would also be great if the US didn't have such a huge presence there (military or otherwise) which is necessary, as of now, because of the my point above. If that presence was reduced so to would any ill feelings toward the US, and maybe they could be redirected to reducing the influence of 'batshit insane scholars'.

    Hope that clears that up.

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    Synthesis wrote:
    Rchanen wrote:
    Kana wrote:
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Just so we're clear, Iran has spent the last 40 years using perceived outside aggression as a tool for societal cohesion. Engaging in actual aggression is the last thing you wanna do.

    And it's not as if it's been just "perceived" after all, modern Iran started out by overthrowing their US-backed dictatorship. Iran may be fairly bad guys, but that doesn't mean we're the good guys either.

    And lets not forget the recent explosions at Iranian research centers. Mysterious death of a scientist as well...

    I sometimes wonder if the current government has essentially decided on covert sabotage and black ops.

    Better than overt war.

    I'm not trying to sound snarky or anything, and I'm not an expert on Tehran, but this smacks a little too much of an old James Bond movie plot or a modern video game hook, or even tin-foil hat conspiracy theories.

    The string of assassinations and sabotage against Iran's nuclear program has been well documented, and it is widely assumed that Israel is primarily involved, maybe with some US assistance.

    http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/another-iranian-nuclear-scientist-murdered-in-tehran-1.374898
    In November 2010, another scientist, Majid Shahriari, was killed and on the same day an attempt was made on the life of nuclear laser expert Prof. Fereidoun Abbasi, injuring him.
    Earlier in 2010, Prof. Massoud Ali Mohammadi was killed in Tehran by a bomb attached to his car.



    The explosion at the missile site not only came at a time of very high tensions, but also killed an important figure in Iran's missile program.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-15960456
    One of those killed was Gen Hassan Tehrani Moghaddam, who was said to have been working on Iran's missile programme.

    An explosion shortly afterwords ocurred at a nuclear site in Isfahan.
    http://www.haaretz.com/news/middle-east/report-explosion-rocks-iran-city-of-isfahan-home-to-key-nuclear-facility-1.398312

    And let us not forget Stuxnet, perhaps the first real example of a weaponized computer virus that targeted Iran's nuclear program.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stuxnet

    Programs initiated under Bush, and presumably continued today gave a large CIA budget that went towards destabilizing Iran.
    http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2008/07/07/080707fa_fact_hersh
    Late last year, Congress agreed to a request from President Bush to fund a major escalation of covert operations against Iran, according to current and former military, intelligence, and congressional sources. These operations, for which the President sought up to four hundred million dollars, were described in a Presidential Finding signed by Bush, and are designed to destabilize the country’s religious leadership. The covert activities involve support of the minority Ahwazi Arab and Baluchi groups and other dissident organizations. They also include gathering intelligence about Iran’s suspected nuclear-weapons program.

    Clandestine operations against Iran are not new. United States Special Operations Forces have been conducting cross-border operations from southern Iraq, with Presidential authorization, since last year. These have included seizing members of Al Quds, the commando arm of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, and taking them to Iraq for interrogation, and the pursuit of “high-value targets” in the President’s war on terror, who may be captured or killed. But the scale and the scope of the operations in Iran, which involve the Central Intelligence Agency and the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), have now been significantly expanded, according to the current and former officials. Many of these activities are not specified in the new Finding, and some congressional leaders have had serious questions about their nature.

    "U.S. Is Said to Expand Secret Actions in Mideast"
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/25/world/25military.html

    "Bush Authorizes New Covert Action Against Iran"
    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2007/05/bush_authorizes/



    There is massive covert action taking place against Iran. The CIA, Mossad, and other organizations exist for this exact purpose. You can't believe everything you hear of course, but respected journalists, news organizations and even governments themselves routinely report on such thing. To simply dismiss them as "tinfoil hat" is ridiculous.

    ragesig.jpg

  • ZephiranZephiran Registered User regular
    I make no illusions regarding whether or not I'll ever come to live a full man-size lifespan, but if I do I'm going to enjoy the day information regarding stuff like this gets declassified and someone can make a decent action novel out of it. Man I'm almost looking forward to my retirement years now.

  • ElkiElki GOBS OF PUKE!!! YES!!!!!!!Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited December 2011
    Hamurabi wrote:
    Elki wrote:
    'Saudis have concerns about their Shia populations'. I just love how American politicians and commentators just go right ahead and skip over the fact that the Saudi Royal Family is asshole-bigots central, and go straight to highlighting the benefits of being BFF with asshole-bigots.

    If nothing else, they have realized their vulnerability on that front, and have begun incorporating minority sects more and more into the state religious apparatus. It's kind of a limited program, though, akin to sectarian affirmative action.

    And other fun things, like invading a neighbor in a display of Arab state-on-state aggression not seen since one Saddam Hussein decided that Iraq was missing a province. But it was OK and different, because of something. Oh right I remember, Iran was fermenting revolution and chaos. We sure wouldn't want them bullying neighbors, invading them, and brutally putting down protests. That would be terrible.

    Elki on
  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    Here is a neat little interactive timeline of the Arab Spring, courtesy of the Guardian:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/interactive/2011/mar/22/middle-east-protest-interactive-timeline?fb=native

    ragesig.jpg

  • RchanenRchanen Registered User regular
    [Tycho?] wrote:



    There is massive covert action taking place against Iran. The CIA, Mossad, and other organizations exist for this exact purpose. You can't believe everything you hear of course, but respected journalists, news organizations and even governments themselves routinely report on such thing. To simply dismiss them as "tinfoil hat" is ridiculous.

    Of course all the talk of the covert action kind of undermines the covert action. Rule one of secret political murder club: You DO NOT TALK ABOUT SECRET POLITICAL MURDER CLUB.

    Toldo wrote:
    Preacher wrote:
    Skinny guys fight till their burger. Screw debates lets have Barack Obama and Willard Romney rumble in the mofoing jungle.
    Obama punches Romney.
    "Okay, now wait a minute. You've had your turn. Let me have a turn. Wait a minute," Romney says.
    Obama punches Romney.
This discussion has been closed.