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Old 05-26-2009, 04:02 AM   #1
aikishrine
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
We've heard rather a lot of this in the past eight years, and IMO not enough of the following two questions:
1. On what basis do you assert that your "whatever" methods are, in fact, what it takes (and, implicitly, that no other methods will suffice)?
2. On what basis do you assert that your "whatever" methods produce a result that "keep[s] America safe"?

Answer these first; otherwise you're just begging the question.
I ask you this. Do you think that our "torture" methods have helped in thwarting acts of terror on our soil since 9/11? I certainly do. and when you are dealing with people that have no regard for there own lives, let alone yours, how else are you going to reach them. I wish there was another way, and maybe there is, and if so i hope we find it. But i am not counting on it at this point. As i stated before war is ugly. And if you ask me, the American military as a whole may be to ethical. If we went into Iraq and Afganistan with all guns blazing we would have been in and out in no time. But we are worried about collateral damage where as no other country would be. Especially the people we are fighting.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 05:16 AM   #2
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Brian Northrup wrote: View Post
But we are worried about collateral damage where as no other country would be.
Great way to insult your allies. I 'm sure the Dutch troops in Afghanistan appreciate it. [Disclaimer: I am Dutch, but not in the military.]
 
Old 05-26-2009, 06:23 AM   #3
Peter Goldsbury
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Mr Northrup,

With respect, I think that there is too much thread drift here.

Your initial question related to aikido and bushido as philosophies. Given the breadth of the question, I can understand posters discussing Japan's wartime military activities done in the name of bushido--and even Morihei Ueshiba's supposed connections with the military government that was in power at the time. I think the questions are indirectly relevant to aikido as an ethical philosophy.

However, there is an Open Discussion forum for discussion of the type of questions you pose in your post (copied below). Aikiweb is an international aikido discussion forum and I do not believe that AikWeb members, especially Aikiweb members like myself, who are not US nationals, should be faced with the question of debating the morality of the actions of US forces in Iraq or Afghanistan--especially in a thread relating to the Japanese concept of bushido.

Best wishes,

P A Goldsbury

Quote:
Brian Northrup wrote: View Post
I ask you this. Do you think that our "torture" methods have helped in thwarting acts of terror on our soil since 9/11? I certainly do. and when you are dealing with people that have no regard for there own lives, let alone yours, how else are you going to reach them. I wish there was another way, and maybe there is, and if so i hope we find it. But i am not counting on it at this point. As i stated before war is ugly. And if you ask me, the American military as a whole may be to ethical. If we went into Iraq and Afganistan with all guns blazing we would have been in and out in no time. But we are worried about collateral damage where as no other country would be. Especially the people we are fighting.

P A Goldsbury
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Hiroshima, Japan
 
Old 05-26-2009, 07:05 AM   #4
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Brian Northrup wrote: View Post
I ask you this. Do you think that our "torture" methods have helped in thwarting acts of terror on our soil since 9/11?
I have no idea if our torture (no quotes, be honest and call a spade a spade) methods have helped in thwarting acts of terror on our soil since 9/11. Unless you're privy to some specific information that you're not disclosing, you don't either. You guess that they have, but your conclusion is dependent on a chain of premises. You continue to cling to your guess, your gut feeling, but the two questions I posed are exactly what you must answer in order for your guess to be anything more than that. You believe that others' being tortured is an acceptable price to pay for making you feel safe; I say I want evidence that such torture actually has made me any safer before I will even entertain discussion on whether torture is acceptable. With regret, I have to say that we're never going to agree on this.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 08:24 AM   #5
aikishrine
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Peter and Joep you are both quite correct, so please forgive me. I only went that way because of a couple of other post that prodded that response out of me, and i reacted emotionally. Please accept my apologies.

Mary you are correct in assuming that we wont ever agree.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 08:50 AM   #6
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Hi Brian,

Please don't think that I at least am offended. People disagree on things all the time. My political views, my views on aikido, my views on the world at large are just that...my views. Yours are yours. No particular reason why they should be the same. I have had disagreements on the internet with folks for many years...and then I meet those same people, but we get along wonderfully!

One of the most disagreeable interactions I had on the internet turned out to introduce me to one of Ueshiba's students/teachers! The person who arranged that meeting for me is someone I now hold in very high regard.

I guess I would rarely turn down the opportunity to exchange ideas civilly with other aikidoka...even those with whom I strongly disagree.

Please keep posting...if you believe in what you have written, don't stop because we disagree. If our arguements don't convince you, that is ok. The only thing I can ask, is that we respect each other in spite of our differing opinions.

Best,
Ron (find value where you can, leave the rest for another day...you never know where it might lead you later)

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
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Old 05-26-2009, 08:55 AM   #7
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
I have no idea if our torture (no quotes, be honest and call a spade a spade) methods have helped in thwarting acts of terror on our soil since 9/11. Unless you're privy to some specific information that you're not disclosing, you don't either. You guess that they have, but your conclusion is dependent on a chain of premises. .
"The waterboarding of Khalid Shaikh Mohammed is often cited as one of the major waterboarding "success stories". ABC News reporter Brian Ross credited waterboarding for the crucial information used to avert the destruction of Library Tower."

ROSS: "That has happened in some cases where the material that's been given has not been accurate, has been essentially to stop the torture. In the case of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the information was very valuable, particularly names and addresses of people who were involved with al Qaeda in this country and in Europe. And in one particular plot, which would involve an airline attack on the tallest building in Los Angeles, known as the Library Tower." http://waterboarding.org/success_story

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
You continue to cling to your guess, your gut feeling, but the two questions I posed are exactly what you must answer in order for your guess to be anything more than that. You believe that others' being tortured is an acceptable price to pay for making you feel safe; I say I want evidence that such torture actually has made me any safer before I will even entertain discussion on whether torture is acceptable. With regret, I have to say that we're never going to agree on this.
Maybe some of the people in Los Angeles feel safer.

David
 
Old 05-26-2009, 09:40 AM   #8
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Hi David,

Feeling safer and Being safer are two very different things...

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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Old 05-26-2009, 09:54 AM   #9
C. David Henderson
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

The "torture saved LA" narrative is seriously to be questioned. The timing of the announced "thwarting" of the LA attack substantially preceded the reported timing of the waterboarding of this individual.

He was, by the way, waterboarded six times a day for thirty days.

Effective compared to what?
 
Old 05-26-2009, 12:11 PM   #10
Carsten Möllering
 
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
David Skaggs wrote: View Post
Maybe some of the people in Los Angeles feel safer.
Maybe the rest of the world would feel safer if the US wouldn't use torture and wouldn't tell fairy-tales.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:11 PM   #11
aikishrine
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Carsten Möllering wrote: View Post
Maybe the rest of the world would feel safer if the US wouldn't use torture and wouldn't tell fairy-tales.
Then maybe the rest of the world shouldnt ask us for help anymore. How safe will they feel then.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:20 PM   #12
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Brian, a good part of "the rest of the world" begged and pleaded with the US to not start the Iraq war. Just sayin'.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:21 PM   #13
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Heck a good part of the US begged and pleaded too...what good did it do us??

Best,
Ron

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Old 05-26-2009, 03:26 PM   #14
aikishrine
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Iraq is one thing, but what about South Korea or Syria or Burma or Europe during WWII or various other countries in Africa, Or the people of Saudi Arabia etc...
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:27 PM   #15
aikishrine
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

And the people of Iraq wanted us there to begin with, maybe not now i dont know for sure.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:29 PM   #16
aikishrine
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

By the way thank you Ron for convincing me to post again
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:30 PM   #17
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Brian Northrup wrote: View Post
Iraq is one thing, but what about South Korea or Syria or Burma or Europe during WWII or various other countries in Africa, Or the people of Saudi Arabia etc...
This went off-topic for this forum a while back. I'll start a thread in General; head over there if you would like to continue.
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:31 PM   #18
aikishrine
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

OK Mary good deal
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:32 PM   #19
lbb
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

...err, in Open Discussions. Headslap!
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:39 PM   #20
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

ahem...

Iraqi taliban, suni (sp) amoung others certainly did not.

And they made that quite clear (my appreciation to the U.S. service men and women who gave their lives and bodies). Despite my appreciation to those that serve, I cannot personally justify entering that war. And there are many many Iraqis (from what I have heard and read) that even after their initial joy, quickly decided otherwise.

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
 
Old 05-26-2009, 03:44 PM   #21
Ron Tisdale
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Brian Northrup wrote: View Post
By the way thank you Ron for convincing me to post again
Open discussion in the marketplace of ideas is one of the best things about the internet. We need our challengers here, if only to keep ourselves honest. Same thing in keiko...no?

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
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Old 05-26-2009, 03:45 PM   #22
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Terrorism, torture and US foreign policy

(this is spun off the "aikido and bushido" thread on the General forum -- apologies if the thread title doesn't do justice)

Quote:
Brian Northrup wrote: View Post
Iraq is one thing, but what about South Korea or Syria or Burma or Europe during WWII or various other countries in Africa, Or the people of Saudi Arabia etc...
The argument you've been trying to make is (paraphrased) "Those other countries ought to shut up about what the US is doing, because they asked us to do it." As I pointed out, in the case of the Iraq war (which is really what we're talking about here -- remember we got to this point in the discussion by talking about whether torture is justified to fight terrorism), in fact, many countries strenuously objected to the US's starting the war.

So, you don't want to address the case of Iraq? Okay, but if so, you're dropping the whole discussion of US policy leading to and resulting from that war, thus making it pretty hard to carry on a discussion about US policy re: torture. So, we'll consider those topics closed.

As for your "what about", I'm not trying to be difficult, but your "what abouts" are just too general. Entire nations don't speak with one voice, much less entire continents: "South Korea" didn't ask the US to go to war on its behalf. I'm not even sure what conflicts you mean with your reference to Syria and Burma. In any event, though, it's such a bad idea to take a request for assistance as a blank check to act however you please. It's not ethical behavior, for starters, and from a purely pragmatic point of view, it always blows up in the end.
 
Old 05-27-2009, 08:16 AM   #23
aikishrine
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Re: Terrorism, torture and US foreign policy

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
(this is spun off the "aikido and bushido" thread on the General forum -- apologies if the thread title doesn't do justice)

The argument you've been trying to make is (paraphrased) "Those other countries ought to shut up about what the US is doing, because they asked us to do it." As I pointed out, in the case of the Iraq war (which is really what we're talking about here -- remember we got to this point in the discussion by talking about whether torture is justified to fight terrorism), in fact, many countries strenuously objected to the US's starting the war.

So, you don't want to address the case of Iraq? Okay, but if so, you're dropping the whole discussion of US policy leading to and resulting from that war, thus making it pretty hard to carry on a discussion about US policy re: torture. So, we'll consider those topics closed.

As for your "what about", I'm not trying to be difficult, but your "what abouts" are just too general. Entire nations don't speak with one voice, much less entire continents: "South Korea" didn't ask the US to go to war on its behalf. I'm not even sure what conflicts you mean with your reference to Syria and Burma. In any event, though, it's such a bad idea to take a request for assistance as a blank check to act however you please. It's not ethical behavior, for starters, and from a purely pragmatic point of view, it always blows up in the end.
I am not talking about the conflict in Iraq in regards to our "torture" procedures. In all actuality those procedures were put into place after 9/11, in regards to all who may be terrorist. And yes South Korea is in fact asking us to keep North Korea at bay, as well as Japan for that matter. Wether we like it or not the U.S. is the world police. In the times we live in someone has to be, so i would rather it be us than anyone else.
 
Old 05-27-2009, 10:11 AM   #24
Mike Sigman
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Re: Aikido and Bushido

Quote:
Mary Malmros wrote: View Post
I have no idea if our torture (no quotes, be honest and call a spade a spade) methods have helped in thwarting acts of terror on our soil since 9/11. Unless you're privy to some specific information that you're not disclosing, you don't either. You guess that they have, but your conclusion is dependent on a chain of premises.
Well, the Democrat George Tenet, the CIA Director under Presidents Clinton and Bush, bluntly said: "I know that this program has saved lives. I know we've disrupted plots. I know this program alone is worth more than the FBI, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the National Security Agency put together have been able to tell us." And other people who had access to the information and machinations say the same thing.

Personally I think that it will take another attack or two before a lot of fat-dumb-and-happy theorists begin to understand that life ain't about just MTV and nice theory. I always remember an interview I read of an Israeli Army captain who after listening to the theory-laced questions about what is "right", whether Israeli women were allowed to fight in combat, etc.,..... he said something like, "Ma'am, it's nice to have all of those theoretical concerns back in the US, but we're actually fighting a war for our lives here".

So Mary, how do you define "torture"? The law, until very recently, was fairly specific about lasting harm, etc. However, some people think that sleep-deprivation is torture, that shouting at a prisoner is torture, that even touching a prisoner is torture. How do you define torture?

Best.

Mike
 
Old 05-27-2009, 10:55 AM   #25
Marc Abrams
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Re: Terrorism, torture and US foreign policy

The CIA director was very direct in talking about the torture as having provided us with a lot of useful information. This has been confirmed to me by people who were and are in "the know." That being said, I have the following opinions:

1) The Bush administration made a HUGE mistake (one of among countless mistakes) in stating that non-uniformed, enemy combatants would be treated according to the Geneva Convention and then violated those conventions and tried to hide it behind legalese.

2) The Bush administration would have been much better off by simply stating that these combatants would not be treated according to the Geneva Convention. If our soldiers were caught, they certainly were not provided with those "niceties." Frankly, the "high value" prisoners should have been tortured for all of the information and then tortured to death.

3) This war on terrorism is real and really dangerous. If we are not willing to fight this war to win, then a whole lot of misery is ahead of us. A zealot who is hell-bent on killing us is better off dead BEFORE an act, rather than after the act. If they do not have any civil rules of engagement, neither should we. We need to fight to win by taking out their leadership wherever, whenever, and however it can be done. If torture is a tool to extract information then so be it. If it is a clear sign to them that we will go to any extreme to wipe them off the face of the earth then so be it. They are not going away, so maybe we need to fight to win the minds of poor, disenfranchised Muslims, while at the same time, eliminate the terrorists any way we can, and as fast as we can.

4) We wasted FAR TOO MANY LIVES AND DOLLARS by the Bush Folly in Iraq. Those that advocated for this folly were the ones without mud on their boots! When they had a chance to serve, just look at their records, it speaks for itself.

Marc Abrams
 

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