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Larkin was right. - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
wemyss
wemyss
Larkin was right.
We have failed the test. We have chosen dishonour.

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pathology_doc From: pathology_doc Date: August 31st, 2013 09:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
But what honour is there in following the useless mountebank in the White House into the shooting of a few arrows in the air, which fall to earth he cares not where, so long as his worthless conscience is appeased and his worthless supplicants distracted momentarily from his ongoing and incalculable incompetence?

What honour is there in applying punishment when the Other Side in this nasty little civil war, and the one which must surely benefit, is the one whose leader we sought for twelve years to chase down and destroy (or a close relative thereof)?

There are but two courses which make any sense - a carefully planned conquest and recolonisation on the one hand, with a presence so long-term as to be open-ended... or an insensate spasm of destruction, visited on both sides equally, until all that can be heard within Syria are the screams of the wounded and dying and all that can be seen to move are the vermin which feed upon the corpses.

The United States, the only democratic power capable of that first option, lacks the will and in a few more years may lack the means.

There is of course a third alternative (Niven and Pournelle's "Gripping Hand" option), but we haven't seen the likes of THAT since 1945 and I should hope we would not have the need of it now.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: September 1st, 2013 02:09 pm (UTC) (Link)

My good doctor.

You are excluding several middles. And options that combine covert with over action. And I repeat: my conclusions are what they are despite Mr Obama's being involved: just as one should have preferred not to have Servia as an ally in 1914 and Stalin in 1941. Most importantly, if one measures the consequences I draw from the vote against, as against all that the Government's motion in fact was to do, my conclusion is irrefutable. In case you have not seen the precise text of that Motion, it is here, in Thursday's Hansard:
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201314/cmhansrd/chan40.pdf.

I know what Winston, and Archie Sinclair, and Ernie Bevin, and Admiral Keyes, and Geoffrey Mander, shd have done in this sort of vote.

Edited at 2013-09-01 02:12 pm (UTC)
pathology_doc From: pathology_doc Date: September 1st, 2013 05:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: My good doctor.

I am all too afeared of the Commonwealth once more being a minor partner, committed to stand on the left wing of someone else's Plan XVII.

That whoever pulled the trigger should be made to suffer cannot be doubted, but I state again - whatever we do in this battle that weakens one evil serves only to strengthen and embolden another, and the only course I feel truly moral is one that weakens both. The Commonwealth is dependent upon an ally who, in his one previous major test, proved himself cowardly, mendacious, incompetent and ultimately traitorous to those who pledged their lives to the flag he insults with his Presidency. I would regard the avoidance of war on this occasion as a felix culpa. Unless the job can be done properly, I see very strong reasons for not doing it at all.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: September 2nd, 2013 04:51 pm (UTC) (Link)

And I regard it as infelicitous and culpable.

Look, over the years we've had to join hands with the Frogs to see off the Spanish, with Russia and Prussia to see off Boney, with Russia and France to see off the Kaiser, with the Soviets to see off Little Adolf.... Yes, every victory has meant we have then been forced to settle accounts with our then ally in the next round. But the fights were worth fighting all the same.

From butcher-and-bolt to counterinsurgency, we are the nation that wrote the book. Yes, we're in a bit of cleft stick, with few attractive options: but that is the consequence of earlier inaction, which in never an excuse for further inaction.

And there is this: historically, from Malaysia to the Maghreb, the Levant to Lahore, there is one thing these gentry cannot face, indeed which causes the buggers to flee in panic, all hopes of earthly power and eternal paradise abandoned. It's not Them, or HM Jollies, though these have their role; it's not the Yanks or Johnny Turk or even the Princess Pats and the Anzacs. The levies we shd be facing shit themselves, every time, when facing Highland troops and the Brigade of Gurkhas. When they hear pipe music and shouts of 'Ayo Gorkhali!', when they face kilts and kukris, you don't see this lot for dust.
pathology_doc From: pathology_doc Date: September 3rd, 2013 06:15 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: And I regard it as infelicitous and culpable.

In our previous fights, the sides we were taking were substantially clearer. Mr Andrew Bolt, of whom I'm sure you're familiar, has asked the question "Should we be Al Qaeda's air force?", and I must admit he has a point.

It is one thing to dance to the tune of a more powerful ally; it is quite another to dance to the tune of one who might yet leave those Scotsmen and those Gurkhas to hang out to dry if the going gets rough and the political situation inconvenient. The worst-case scenarios posited re. the fates of a few brave men in Benghazi strongly suggest that he has form in this regard. And unlike previous wars, we have not the Royal Navy and complete command of the seas to use as leverage. My desire for action is strong; my desire for caution in the context of an extremely duplicitous and mercurial ally is in this case somewhat stronger.

I would support action which was taken in parallel with our US ally, so long as individual actions of HM Forces (under any national flag) were in no way absolutely dependent on US military assets and the overall Commonwealth Theatre commander(s) had right of appeal to their respective governments. In this regard, I would wish Australia to stay well out unless there were a change of government this coming Saturday - the current lot are characterised by their invertebrate nature whenever they are not characterised by their utter incompetence.
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