Trying to understand 9/11 versus Hiroshima

Get Email Updates Email this Topic Print this Page

Amperage
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 01:46 pm
@kennethamy,
well it has been said that one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter/patriot. So it can be tough to draw a fine line. American's were probably considered terrorists in the eyes of the British prior to the revolutionary war. General Sherman may have seemed a terrorist to some during his infamous march through the south during the civil war.

The biggest difference to me is that between 9/11 and our dropping of the atomic bomb is 2 fold. Firstly, we were at war and had been for some time and there was a real need to end the war quickly without facing the prospect of full on invasion of Japan. Let us not forget that each island we captured on the way towards Japan was like a mini D-Day in an of themselves. Secondly, the means to carry out 9/11 seem more unethical. Unlike WWII, our citizens were not in a state of heightened awareness in which war was all around us. We seemingly had no reason to expect any sort of an attack as we had seemingly not overtly "wronged" anyone nor were we at war with anyone.

I agree with xris when he said "America acted against Japan by dropping an A bomb in the hope of ending hostilities. The terrorist attack on America was intended to encourage hostilities." Not that there weren't other benefits gained from using the atomic bomb but I would have a hard time buying our chief goal as something other than ending the war(for example one could argue we dropped it to send a message to the Russians)
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 01:51 pm
@xris,
xris;148601 wrote:
Its a term adopted to undermine the enemies legality. Would you call the Zionist freedom fighters, terrorists who blew up a hotel killing my countrymen? Whats in word, a term ? nothing more than the intention to politicise the aggressor.


Whatever its intention, it might still be correct and applicable. Suppose the prosecution called the accused a rapist in open court. Perhaps the intention is to undermine the accused in front of the jury, but, so what? If the accused is a rapist, then the term, "rapist" is still applicable to him. It can both be true that the intention is to undermine the enemies, and, also, it may be correctly applied. The one need not exclude the other.

First of all, the insurgents who blew up the King David hotel in Jerusalem killed few since they telephoned and warned the residents of the hotel that it was going to be bombed (hardly the action of terrorists). In the second place, the King David Hotel was the headquarters of the British Army in Palestine. So the insurgents were not attacking civilians. They were attacking military personnel. And, therefore, they could not have been terrorists by definition.
 
xris
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:04 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;148606 wrote:
Whatever its intention, it might still be correct and applicable. Suppose the prosecution called the accused a rapist in open court. Perhaps the intention is to undermine the accused in front of the jury, but, so what? If the accused is a rapist, then the term, "rapist" is still applicable to him. It can both be true that the intention is to undermine the enemies, and, also, it may be correctly applied. The one need not exclude the other.

First of all, the insurgents who blew up the King David hotel in Jerusalem killed few since they telephoned and warned the residents of the hotel that it was going to be bombed (hardly the action of terrorists). In the second place, the King David Hotel was the headquarters of the British Army in Palestine. So the insurgents were not attacking civilians. They were attacking military personnel. And, therefore, they could not have been terrorists by definition.
The british soldiers from my regiment were acting as peace keepers and in my mind the Zionists were terrorists acting against the legality of the time. Those same soldiers had helped release Jewish prisoners from concentration camps, not that many months previously.
 
Khethil
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:05 pm
@Karpowich,
kennethamy;148556 wrote:
I see the differences. But how are those differences relevant to the issue of terrorism? If that is the issue.


Nothing, and no, that's not the only issue.

Karpowich;148450 wrote:
I have been trying to understand the difference ethically, if there is any, between 9/11 and the United States dropping a bomb on Hiroshima.


I see we've gotten into the labels-thing here; which I suppose is inevitable. But if I understand the opening post's intent, it has more to do with understanding the differences on an ethical/moral plane. They both have to do with indiscriminate killing of noncombatants.

If we want to wander into the label-game; Acts of Terrorism are actions seek to affect change through striking fear. In that case, both instances could bear that term but I don't think quite so much in the case of WWII; where the goal was surrender/cessation from a large-scale all-out war against a nation that started hostilities. Still, one could make a case, I think, with a loose correlation.

Thanks
 
deepthot
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:09 pm
@xris,
xris;148551 wrote:
America acted against Japan by dropping an A bomb in the hope of ending hostilities. The terrorist attack on America was intended to encourage hostilities.



So you are able to read the intentions in another mind? That is some amazing capacity you have, xris. Really.

Nearly every example given here is one of violence.

Violence is wrong from a moral standpoint because somebody gets hurt. Why not find nonviolent ways of responding ...even in cases of self-defense.

I suggest we train people in Akaido. Supplement this with Judo. Then if one is attacked, one may use the force of the attacker to bring the attacker down.

If there is someone here who does not yet know that war is wrong, I would like to hear their argument justifying it. Yes, there is such a thing as 'a just war' - and we have had long threads here listing the conditions that have to be met to make it just - but I am not sure that the USA war against Japan in 1945 meets the requirements since the USA did so much to provoke it by squeezing Japan economically before the Pearl Harbor incident (and ignoring the subsequent warnings that Japan gave the US.) The USSR war against Germany may have been a just one if the USSR did not provoke Germany to invade Russia; if it did, I am not aware of it.


"What is right is right even if no one does it.
What is wrong is wrong even if everyone does it."

-
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:13 pm
@xris,
xris;148611 wrote:
The british soldiers from my regiment were acting as peace keepers and in my mind the Zionists were terrorists acting against the legality of the time. Those same soldiers had helped release Jewish prisoners from concentration camps, not that many months previously.


Nonetheless, they were soldiers, and terrorists target civilians. Therefore, whether or not the insurgents were "terrorists in your mind" they weren't. Insurgents always act against "the legality of the time". So that is irrelevant. And it is irrelevant that the soldiers released Jewish prisoners (which, of course, the insurgents did not know about anyway).
 
xris
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:22 pm
@deepthot,
deepthot;148613 wrote:
So you are able to read the intentions in another mind? That is some amazing capacity you have, xris. Really.

Nearly every example given here is one of violence.

Violence is wrong from a moral standpoint because somebody gets hurt. Why not find nonviolent ways of responding ...even in cases of self-defense.

I suggest we train people in Akaido. Supplement this with Judo. Then if one is attacked, one may use the force of the attacker to bring the attacker down.

If there is someone here who does not yet know that war is wrong, I would like to hear their argument justifying it. Yes, there is such a thing as 'a just war' - and we have had long threads here listing the conditions that have to be met to make it just - but I am not sure that the USA war against Japan in 1945 meets the requirements since the USA did so much to provoke it by squeezing Japan economically before the Pearl Harbor incident (and ignoring the subsequent warnings that Japan gave the US.) The USSR war against Germany may have been a just one if the USSR did not provoke Germany to invade Russia; if it did, I am not aware of it.


"What is right is right even if no one does it.
What is wrong is wrong even if everyone does it."

-
So you really believe the attack on America was a type of punishment? with no idea that America would respond? If thats the case, I think you should believe they were rather naive.

Your strange idea that a constrained Japan, yearning for Empire should be forgiven for attacking America, almost needs no reply..as for your lack of knowledge on the German invasion of the USSR , I would say just read a little history first. War is an inevitable outcome of mans failings, men are just made that way.

---------- Post added 04-05-2010 at 03:29 PM ----------

kennethamy;148614 wrote:
Nonetheless, they were soldiers, and terrorists target civilians. Therefore, whether or not the insurgents were "terrorists in your mind" they weren't. Insurgents always act against "the legality of the time". So that is irrelevant. And it is irrelevant that the soldiers released Jewish prisoners (which, of course, the insurgents did not know about anyway).
Insurgents are terrorists, thats their mode of warfare. I dont care if you call peace keepers valid targets, they were terrorists. I cant see how they could be called anything else. When I encountered insurgents they where domicile not invaders.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:43 pm
@deepthot,
deepthot;148613 wrote:
attacker down.

If there is someone here who does not yet know that war is wrong, I would like to hear their argument justifying it. Yes, there is such a thing as 'a just war' - and we have had long threads here listing the conditions that have to be met to make it just -

-


But if there is such a thing as a just war, then how can war always be wrong, and how it be that there is no argument justifying war. That is a contradiction.

In fact, all war is an evil, but since some evils are not wrong (for example, lesser evils are not wrong) it follows that some wars are not wrong.
 
HexHammer
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:48 pm
@Karpowich,
USA brought 9/11 upon themselfs, I don't care about siding with anyone, I just stay as neutral observer.

They screwed Al Queda plenty times over, in the Afghan war back in the 80'ies, promising military support and never deliver.

If you note all them stinger missiles various terror oganisations uses, it's deliverd from CIA ..that means given freely, not stolen!

USA are too arrogant to do what it really takes to solve problems and resort to violence, instead of mature messures ..talking about it, and not siding with people ..and not discriminating coutries/states for selfish interests.

Hiroshima wasn't really that bad compared to other major bombardments of cities useing fire bombs, it's just that the a-bombs was such an unique event that it got the most coverage.

USA has too much power, too selfcenterd, too arrogant ..and too paranoid.
 
xris
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 02:55 pm
@HexHammer,
HexHammer;148622 wrote:
USA brought 9/11 upon themselfs, I don't care about siding with anyone, I just stay as neutral observer.

They screwed Al Queda plenty times over, in the Afghan war back in the 80'ies, promising military support and never deliver.

If you note all them stinger missiles various terror oganisations uses, it's deliverd from CIA ..that means given freely, not stolen!

USA are too arrogant to do what it really takes to solve problems and resort to violence, instead of mature messures ..talking about it, and not siding with people ..and not discriminating coutries/states for selfish interests.

Hiroshima wasn't really that bad compared to other major bombardments of cities useing fire bombs, it's just that the a-bombs was such an unique event that it got the most coverage.

USA has too much power, too selfcenterd, too arrogant ..and too paranoid.
In conflict you dont judge your mistakes you respond to the most recent attack upon you and then retaliate. Should have America said "oops I deserved that, sorry i wont upset you again, Ive learnt my lesson". Actions and reactions are the result of insignificant actions long forgotten.
 
HexHammer
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 03:03 pm
@xris,
xris;148625 wrote:
In conflict you dont judge your mistakes you respond to the most recent attack upon you and then retaliate. Should have America said "oops I deserved that, sorry i wont upset you again, Ive learnt my lesson". Actions and reactions are the result of insignificant actions long forgotten.
Yes? ..and see where that policy has taken them? Was it 1.6 trillion $ of debt or what was the count? Lost count long ago.

Now after 8 years, they gotten no where in the middle east, even tho they'r the mightiest military might, they can't fight a few AK-47 weilding warriors with their 2 pieces of salty meat and 2 spare clips of ammo ..and that's it, only support are road side bombs ..uhmm what's wrong with this picture?
 
deepthot
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 03:41 pm
@xris,
xris;148617 wrote:
So you really believe the attack on America was a type of punishment? with no idea that America would respond? If thats the case, I think you should believe they were rather naive.... War is an inevitable outcome of mans failings, men are just made that way.-------- Post added 04-05-2010 at 03:29 PM ----------

Insurgents are terrorists, thats their mode of warfare. I dont care if you call peace keepers valid targets, they were terrorists. I cant see how they could be called anything else. When I encountered insurgents they where domicile not invaders.


I see you now know how men are made. How much study did you put in to gain this knowledge? Are you a scientist in that field? I have my doubts as to whether you can back this up with any solid evidence.

You seem to be implying that the fighters on the side of the colonies to establish independence from Great Brietain in the Revolutionary War were terrorists, for they certainly were insurgents.

The point is: One man's "insurgent" is another man's "terrorist." I agree with you on that.

And HexHammer is right when he asks: How far has the "War on Terrorism" (that Bush-Cheney started) gotten us? Have we really eliminated the threat of suicidal attacks on us, or guerrilla tactics directed at us? Absolutely not. More people hate us now that we have killed their relatives (who may have had no malice toward anyone.)

The fact remains: violence is stupid and self-defeating.
 
Pyrrho
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 03:59 pm
@Jebediah,
Jebediah;148567 wrote:
Yes it seems that way, though I'm not a historian.

But simply saying that doesn't lead to understanding of 9/11 versus Hiroshima does it?

As I said in my last post, it's nearsighted to try and bring a "we aren't any better than they are" message out of it. We don't call modern Germany hypocritical if they condemn genocide.



But most Americans do not seem to condemn the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, whereas most Germans do condemn what the Nazis did, so your analogy fails. In point of fact, many Americans seem to condemn such actions only when done by others, but not when done by Americans. You will find this cropping up in discussions of torture as well. And, of course, condemning others for doing what one does is hypocritical. Therefore many Americans are simply hypocrites, and there is no escaping this fact.


Jebediah;148567 wrote:
I think the other questions would be: what are "civilians" and is terrorism ever justified?

I think a situation where you are choosing between bombing and between invading with an army of draftees (not soldiers by choice) against a civilian populace that will fight back is a lot less clear cut. But this is not necessarily a correct interpretation of the historical situation because it's complicated. The justifications I've heard for hiroshima have always been that it was a preventative, a lesser of two evils. Was the 9/11 attack preventing a greater evil?



I don't think either one was necessary. Japan was asking for terms of surrender before the atomic bombs were dropped on them. It was evidently thought by the U.S. government that better terms could be easily had by killing a bunch of civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 05:58 pm
@Pyrrho,
Pyrrho;148645 wrote:
But most Americans do not seem to condemn the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, whereas most Germans do condemn what the Nazis did, so your analogy fails. In point of fact, many Americans seem to condemn such actions only when done by others, but not when done by Americans. You will find this cropping up in discussions of torture as well. And, of course, condemning others for doing what one does is hypocritical. Therefore many Americans are simply hypocrites, and there is no escaping this fact.





I don't think either one was necessary. Japan was asking for terms of surrender before the atomic bombs were dropped on them. It was evidently thought by the U.S. government that better terms could be easily had by killing a bunch of civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.


But the charge of hypocrisy is not so clear since most Americans also think that the atomic bombings were justified in order to prevent greater killing as the result of an American invasion of Japan. It is not simply that they believed that what others did was wrong, and that what they did was all right. It is more complex than that. So, it seems to me that your charge is unfair. Of course, whether the bombing was necessary is something we'll never know. Opinion is mixed on that matter. We had an unconditional surrender policy. and it was this policy that proved the stumbling block.
 
reasoning logic
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 06:07 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;148686 wrote:
But the charge of hypocrisy is not so clear since most Americans also think that the atomic bombings were justified in order to prevent greater killing as the result of an American invasion of Japan. It is not simply that they believed that what others did was wrong, and that what they did was all right. It is more complex than that. So, it seems to me that your charge is unfair. Of course, whether the bombing was necessary is something we'll never know. Opinion is mixed on that matter. We had an unconditional surrender policy. and it was this policy that proved the stumbling block.



I wonder if terrorist have this same view about the good that they think they are doing.:detective:
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 06:21 pm
@reasoning logic,
reasoning logic;148691 wrote:
I wonder if terrorist have this same view about the good that they think they are doing.:detective:


Oh, they might very well. Few evil people believe that what they do is evil even when it is. Charles Manson also believed in what he and his coterie were doing. Hitler certainly thought that he was doing good too. What do you think that shows?
 
Jebediah
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 07:03 pm
@Pyrrho,
Pyrrho;148645 wrote:
But most Americans do not seem to condemn the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, whereas most Germans do condemn what the Nazis did, so your analogy fails. In point of fact, many Americans seem to condemn such actions only when done by others, but not when done by Americans. You will find this cropping up in discussions of torture as well. And, of course, condemning others for doing what one does is hypocritical. Therefore many Americans are simply hypocrites, and there is no escaping this fact.


But what's the question? Is it whether many Americans are hypocrites? The OP seems to say: "we condemn al-queda, but we bombed hiroshima in WW2 so we aren't much better than they are". So there seem to be two claims, one that 9/11 and the hiroshima bombing were the same kind of act, and a second claim that the actions taken by a country in the past make the current citizens hypocrites if they condemn those same actions done by other countries.

You are bringing a separate issue: the fact that people in their patriotism view their countries history through rose tinted glasses (it is often taught like this).

I think you can legitimately condemn 9/11 without having an accurate idea of what your own country has done in the past.
 
reasoning logic
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 07:05 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;148695 wrote:
Oh, they might very well. Few evil people believe that what they do is evil even when it is. Charles Manson also believed in what he and his coterie were doing. Hitler certainly thought that he was doing good too. What do you think that shows?


I would think that this shows that we should not believe in absolutes as far as are ethics are concerned, but instead be open minded that we may have it wrong when we think that it is ok to kill many to get at a few that we believe to be wrong. but it even goes deeper than this.Smile
 
hue-man
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 07:44 pm
@Jebediah,
Jebediah;148567 wrote:
Yes it seems that way, though I'm not a historian.

But simply saying that doesn't lead to understanding of 9/11 versus Hiroshima does it?

As I said in my last post, it's nearsighted to try and bring a "we aren't any better than they are" message out of it. We don't call modern Germany hypocritical if they condemn genocide.

I think the other questions would be: what are "civilians" and is terrorism ever justified?

I think a situation where you are choosing between bombing and between invading with an army of draftees (not soldiers by choice) against a civilian populace that will fight back is a lot less clear cut. But this is not necessarily a correct interpretation of the historical situation because it's complicated. The justifications I've heard for hiroshima have always been that it was a preventative, a lesser of two evils. Was the 9/11 attack preventing a greater evil?


I didn't say that "we" aren't better than they are. I do believe that "we" are better than terrorists are, but arguing that Hiroshima was justified because it saved the lives of American troops and helped win the war is so biased that I don't feel like it's worth arguing over.
 
Karpowich
 
Reply Mon 5 Apr, 2010 11:14 pm
@Karpowich,
I've enjoyed this debate tremendously so far, but here's a suggestion to steer conversation in another direction:

If it is agreed that America has engaged in activities in the past that can be deemed acts of terrorism, is it unethical for America to be fighting a war on terror when we ourselves have been terrorist? If you argue no because it the acts happened so long ago, I would be interested in hearing how much time must pass before the act should no longer impact the image of the country? Also, I do not think the personal justification behind the act should impact the discussion. As many people have stated before, personal justification is one sided. What may seem necessary to an American is most likely a great evil to whomever the act was enacted upon. I'm pretty sure the Japanese do not look at the bombing of their country with happiness and thank America for destroying their non-combat kin in an attempt to save the lives of Americans.
 
 

 
Copyright © 2020 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.02 seconds on 11/26/2020 at 02:56:33