Adult Content Warning

This community may contain adult content that is not suitable for minors. By closing this dialog box or continuing to navigate this site, you certify that you are 18 years of age and consent to view adult content.

Wikileaks

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Beefy Phil, Jul 26, 2010.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Beefy Phil

    Beefy Phil
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    5
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1,618
    So, this happened.

    WikiLeaks today released over 75,000 secret US military reports covering the war in Afghanistan.

    The Afghan War Diary an extraordinary secret compendium of over 91,000 reports covering the war in Afghanistan from 2004 to 2010. The reports describe the majority of lethal military actions involving the United States military. They include the number of persons internally stated to be killed, wounded, or detained during each action, together with the precise geographical location of each event, and the military units involved and major weapon systems used.


    I have two questions.

    -Do you agree with the site's decision to leak the documents. Why or why not?

    -To the people who have experience with these types of documents in a professional capacity: Are these documents as potentially dangerous as the media and the U.S. government would have us believe?
     
  2. scotchcrotch

    scotchcrotch
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    80
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    Messages:
    2,446
    Location:
    ATL
    The government only releases (or allows the release) of info it wants to.

    Playing conspiracy theorist here, Uncle Sam may have leaked this to set the stage for withdrawl to boost public support. The Freedom of Information Act is just a fascade, allowing Uncle Sam to determine what is sensitive. If they were serious about it, they'd have an independent counsel deem what can be release. Of course, that raises the whole national security risk.

    What info would you love to see released by the government?

    I heard classified documents on the JFK assasination will be released within the next ten years. That may clear up a lot of questions, but again it'll just reitierate the Warren Report.
     
  3. kuhjäger

    kuhjäger
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    9
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    2,149
    Location:
    Stockholm
    Ultimately these documents aren't going to do much to change perception of what is going on over there. Most of these documents are plain vanilla. We did this, this is what happened. Honestly, I have a feeling that these documents will show how restrained we actually have been in conducting the operations in Afghanistan. Yes, there will be a couple of documents that indicate a fuck up in procedure that may have lead to unnecessary deaths, but out of 91k, that is a drop in the bucket, as tragic as the deaths may have been, and these reports are used as learning material for future operations (hopefully).

    My personal favorite was one detailing an evacuation of a K-9 by helicopter from an FOB. (this is amusing to me, as the Asians in the area I live are called fobs, fresh off the boat and I can picture a helicopter swooping in and stealing a dog from the clutches of a hungry Korean)

    I have a feeling the only people who are going to be up in arms about anything in the majority of the documents are the armchair intellectuals who haven't even been to the ghetto, much less a war-zone, and have no idea what proper rules of engagement are, and how decisions have to be made in real life and death situations, not in a battle in Call of Duty on X-Box Live.
     
  4. Nettdata

    Nettdata
    Expand Collapse
    Mr. Toast

    Reputation:
    2,065
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2006
    Messages:
    19,467
    Call me crazy, but I think whoever leaked these docs should be shot. Seriously.... as in put up against the wall, and fly a bullet through their head.

    Just about nobody here is anywhere near qualified to discuss the impact these docs do or will have on any kind of operations or individuals moving forward, or what kind of intel could be gleaned from them.

    Sure, a lot of people like to think that the government is always covering shit up, and the military is out to get us, but that does not mean that anyone should take it upon themselves to do something like this in an environment where information like this could put people in harms way.

    It's not like this is My Lai or anything.
     
  5. Obviously5Believer

    Obviously5Believer
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    163
    How in the hell would we know? I'm not saying there has been mass murders but surely there are cases where civilians were wrongfully killed or just straight up murdered. This is war after all. My Lai was covered up efficiently by the military (in fact the company was congratulated on a job well done) and didn't come out until a former soldier wrote letters to Nixon, the joint chiefs, and congressmen a year or two later. We might never have known about it if that didn't happen, surely not all the details.

    Obviously the military has to act in some level of confidentiality and it's also no surprise that they attempt to cover up the truly horrible incidents. Every once in awhile it's good to have something like this happen, to have documents that people never thought would see the light of day come out into the open. A completely transparent government/military would certainly never work but they need to believe that someday people might actually see what they have done behind closed doors.
     
  6. redbullgreygoose

    redbullgreygoose
    Expand Collapse
    Disturbed

    Reputation:
    2
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    495
    Would I feel better if the government were more transparent? Yes. There's always the paranoia that the power will be abused. But there is too much that MUST be confidential. Therefore, I'm all for world governments not releasing the amount of information they do. That's just the way it has to be. Period.
    It just is.

    The person that leaked these documents should be punished. We're not talking about some fucking college kid that went out to the streets of Manhattan and interviewed a junkie who heard explosions in the twin towers. Add some scary music and show 9/11 footage at .5 normal speed and we have a cover-up! No. These documents weren't meant to be seen for a reason.
     
  7. E. Tuffmen

    E. Tuffmen
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    53
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    904
    Location:
    Negative space
    Leaking military documents of any kind is flat out treason and these idiots should absolutely be shot. Even if there had been instances of civilians wrongfully killed or, yes, even murdered, I say FUCK THEM. These are OUR sons, daughters, nephews, cousins, friends over their doing the job THOSE PEOPLE SHOULD HAVE BEEN DOING IN THE FIRST PLACE. It doesn't matter why they are there or if it was right or wrong, or any of that other bullshit. It's too late. They are there. How about we think about them? ANYONE who potentially puts the lives of any of our people at risk is a fucking traitor and and asshole and deserves the full measure of military law. There shouldn't even be a debate over this.
     
  8. Nettdata

    Nettdata
    Expand Collapse
    Mr. Toast

    Reputation:
    2,065
    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2006
    Messages:
    19,467
    Do you seriously believe that anything anywhere near the scope of My Lai could be accomplished at all in today's military, with the media coverage and camera-in-every-fucking-thing-you-own technology?

    No. Fucking. Way.

    Sure, if something like that was found, then leak the fuck out of it... rightly so. If you understand the scope of the My Lai massacre, then you'll understand why.

    But until something like that is shown in these leaks, then all bets are off...

    What is to be gained by leaking 75,000 docs?

    That's just someone doing it for the sake of doing it, without a real purpose behind it.
     
  9. Viking33

    Viking33
    Expand Collapse
    Disturbed

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    313
    So basically they're saying "Here you go. Oh, but we think soldiers that have been getting shot at and blown up all day are lying so you need to take everything they report with a grain of salt. They're baby killers, after all."

    Fuck these cunts. For those of you that don't know, I play rugby with a bunch of guys from the 3rd Inf. Division and the 175 Ranger Bat. and have heard all of the stories from Afghanistan and Iraq on long road trips and during down time. The authors are right, it is shitty paperwork to be done at the end of the day and most officers don't want to do it, but to stand up and say there's a good chance they're lying to cover mistakes and civilian casualties is fucking insulting to the guys on the front lines. Unbelievable. It's cases like this where the public square rackings need to be brought back into consideration.
     
  10. scotchcrotch

    scotchcrotch
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    80
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    Messages:
    2,446
    Location:
    ATL
    "Analysis and scrutiny" is not calling them liars, it's due diligence. That's why there's a chain of command and every soldier isn't Rambo out there with no accountability. Same goes for police officers.
     
  11. ghettoastronaut

    ghettoastronaut
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    70
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    Messages:
    4,917
    There was some discussion in these documents that 4 Canadian soldiers had been killed by friendly fire. I mean, four other ones. At water cooler talk today, discovered that a co-worker knows one of their widows. The poor woman wasn't over her husband's death in the first place, and you can only imagine what it must be like to discover that sort of information through the news.

    Other than this, though I haven't read the entirety documents myself, a lot of the news is not altogether surprising. If you didn't know, for example, that the ISI has close ties to the Taliban and more than a few Taliban sympathizers within its ranks you obviously aren't qualified to discuss the matter, let alone write newspaper editorials about it.

    So you don't care if war crimes are being carried out, in effect, in your name? That's nice to know.
     
  12. Misanthropic

    Misanthropic
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    266
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    2,360
    I am very far from an ultrapatriotic, jingoist, but I agree completely. If a bunch of inept Russian spies, who gathered no information that a 5 year old couldn't obtain using the Googles, are jailed and deported, then the asshole(s) who released these documents should indeed be shot. This is, without a doubt, treason.

    The important issue here is NOT the impact that these documents will have on American public opinion, but how they will influence our allies, our supposed allies (i.e., Pakistan) and what information these documents will provide to the terrorists.

    It would be an entirely different matter if there was a particular incident in question that a reporter was trying to bring to the attention of the public, releasing just those pertinent documents. This, however, was merely throwing a bunch of shit against the wall to see what would stick.
     
  13. E. Tuffmen

    E. Tuffmen
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    53
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    904
    Location:
    Negative space
    The victors decide the definition of a war crime. Until one side or the other has won, it's all just war. And war sucks.
     
  14. ghettoastronaut

    ghettoastronaut
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    70
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    Messages:
    4,917
    No, the fucking International Court of Justice decide those, using such standards of international law as the Geneva convention to which, I believe, the United States is a signatory. If your attitude towards war and the military is that your side can do whatever the hell it wants until it wins, then you clearly don't appreciate what it is living in a first world country under the protection of a professional military. I'm not going to debate this point with you - knowing that you don't care about international law or human rights or how the power of your country is projected is all I need.
     
  15. Frebis

    Frebis
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    288
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    2,253
    Until the "fucking International Court of Justice" has some sort of policing body, it is just put in place to make idealogs feel great while turning a blind eye to what is actually going down.

    I tend to agree with E. Tuffman. The phrase "Might Makes Right" comes to mind.

    That court is as worthless as the UN (which is slighty less effective than the Jamaican Navy).
     
  16. Loadsmasher

    Loadsmasher
    Expand Collapse
    Village Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2010
    Messages:
    11
    Ghetto go look up info on the Katyn Forest Massacre and tell me what the international community did about that. Nothing. Do you know why? Because there was no political capital to be gained. Using the Russians as an example again, has a single Russian ever been accussed in court of the numerous atrocities commited when they were in Afganistan? No. Do you know why, because the Soviets didn't give a fuck what a bunch of lawyers in Denmark said about what they considered an internal security matter.

    The only people that give a shit about what comes out of the Hague is the Hague and the U.S. Mainly because we try to hold ourselves to a higher standard and partly because we dont want to be seen as bullies. In fact, I can't think of another military that would file reports of this nature and then keep them.
     
  17. Obviously5Believer

    Obviously5Believer
    Expand Collapse
    Experienced Idiot

    Reputation:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    163
    No I don't. That's why I said I'm sure there haven't been mass murders as in hundreds of civilians killed. There almost certainly have been incidents of 1, 2, 5 people executed or raped. Not that these documents will show it, but the "purpose' or releasing military documents, if there is one, is so ordinary people can get a glimpse of how our military operates and the scope of our operations in countries abroad. The fact that the military has 75,000 documents on violent/fatal incidents in an 8 year period in one limited theater should alone be enough to give people pause.

    Also the nature of warfare is changing. It is no longer acceptable for civilians to die. In World War II we firebombed the shit out of civilian targets. Hell we burnt more innocent people to death in Tokyo in one night than all the people killed in Afghanistan so far. One mission out of hundreds, probably thousands of sorties against civilian targets.

    In Vietnam the game is different. It's a limited theater and there are no clear cut reasons. 300+ people murdered like My Lai is a major incident. But one of hundreds. Also, we firebomb the shit out of the jungle and wind up killing a million or more civilians.

    War is evolving to not be a mass indiscriminate slaughter. In 50 years the death of a thousand or more civilians in a limited scale conflict will probably be an unthinkable tragedy. Part of the reason is that civilians now hold the military more accountable for their actions. Human lives are worth more individually in the public consciousness, especially in warfare that is built on shaky ethical ground. It might seem to have no purpose, but exposing the deaths of civilians is part of the ongoing evolution of warfare.
     
  18. ghettoastronaut

    ghettoastronaut
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    70
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    Messages:
    4,917
    You have just made my point for me. Based on what these other two have said here, it would seem that they would be perfectly ok with the U.S. military using the tactics of our enemies, like going into villages at night and gouging out the eyes of NATO co-operators, indiscriminately and intentionally bombing civilians, and using poison gas on a massive scale. And they'd seemingly be ok with it simply because it was their boys and girls doing the destruction, and not somebody else. We don't fight our enemies just because they're our enemies. We fight them because they've done things to merit the title, and so much for any hint of moral authority if we start using their tactics. The U.S. military even has its own rules of conduct that covers shit like murder (and I mean real murder, not "those evil bad soldiers confused those civilians for combatants in the heat of battle and killed them and then apologized and paid their families compensation") - why do those even exist if they should be casually tossed aside when it comes to actually enforcing them?

    The logic leads down an odd path. At once, we are not to dare question the integrity of any U.S. servicemember and presume them to be baby killers or war criminals, and at the same time, even if they are war criminals, we'd better not hold them accountable for their actions because god dammit they're Americans. Call me crazy but I like my military to be professional and accountable.

    Obviously I'm not accusing U.S. soldiers of being war criminals. I know enough people who've been deployed overseas to know that, even with the best of intentions, seriously fucked up shit happens. Fucked up shit happening is a far, far cry from actual war crimes. My girlfriend's mother, for example, would not approve of her daugher joining the military because she spent a good chunk of her youth on the run from the Chinese communists. I don't know the ins and outs of her psychology but it seems as though she doesn't quite understand the concept of a first world, professional military. I wouldn't think anyone here would seriously suggest that the Chinese communists are excused their actions because they were the victors in that particular war and get to decide if any war crimes were committed, and yet...

    Really?
     
  19. E. Tuffmen

    E. Tuffmen
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    53
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2009
    Messages:
    904
    Location:
    Negative space
    Why is it that the other side can "do whatever it wants until it wins", but OUR people are constantly subjected to ridiculous standards and rules of engagement. Its WAR, and it's extremely violent, bloody, chaotic, and frightening, and you can bet your ass "the other side" is doing everything it can to win. Trying to bring the high-minded, intellectual ideals of human rights, international law, and the outdated, oft ignored rules of the Geneva convention into it doesn't work. Didn't work in Vietnam, doesn't work here. IF we are going to go to war, GO ALL IN AND WIN. Then, later, when the smoke clears figure it all out. Punish those who went to far, with a deep understanding and appreciation of the situation they were in, rebuild, learn, and mend fences.

    And this is not about nationalism or pride in one's country. It's about solidarity, commitment, and a duty to the people who were asked to do a really shitty thing for whatever reason. It's about watching out for our own, and I don't think that's too much to ask. Do I think it's horrible if innocent people are killed, absolutely. It's gut wrenching. War is hell.
     
  20. ghettoastronaut

    ghettoastronaut
    Expand Collapse
    Emotionally Jaded

    Reputation:
    70
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    Messages:
    4,917
    Remember what I said before about this being all I needed to know? You've done it again. I for one like living in a first world country. If you want a military that doesn't abide by silly things like rules, you're welcome to find a country with just such a military, but I don't think you'll like living there very much.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.