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Old 05-15-2012, 09:29 PM  
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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US to Arab Spring: **** You



http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/38eb21ee-9...#axzz1uzn9UKsN

US arms sales to Bahrain to resume
By Geoff Dyer in Washington
May 12, 2012 12:09 am

The US is to resume selling arms to Bahrain a little more than a year after a harsh crackdown on anti-government protesters and despite continued claims of human rights abuses in the Gulf kingdom, which is a key US ally.

The Obama administration said that the arms sales, which Congress has been notified about, would include upgrades for Bahrain’s defence force, but would not involve weapons that could be used against demonstrators.

The decision to restart arms sales was the result of “national security interests”, said Victoria Nuland, state department spokeswoman. It follows a visit to Washington this week by Sheikh Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Bahrain’s crown prince, who met with Hillary Clinton, secretary of state, and Leon Panetta, defence secretary.

Home to the US 5th fleet, Bahrain has been a key partner of the US in the Gulf for more than 60 years and the military facilities in the country are a central plank in the Pentagon’s efforts to deter Iran.

Other US allies in the region, notably Saudi Arabia, have also put pressure on Washington to maintain its support for Bahrain’s ruling Sunni Muslim royal family, which has faced widespread unrest among the majority Shia Muslim population.

However, the administration came under heavy pressure to scale back its ties last March after Manama declared a state of emergency in response to protests following the entry of Saudi and Emirati troops. In October, $53m in planned arms sales were put on hold pending an investigation of alleged human rights abuses.

A senior state department official said that the new arms sales would help boost the country’s external defences and would include air-to-air missiles, components for F-16 fighter jets and potentially a naval frigate. However, they would not include Humvees, stun grenades or tear gas.

“We are mindful of the continued human rights issues,” said a senior official. “Right now they are at an impasse and the violence is a result of that.”

In a speech last November, Hillary Clinton reflected on the conflicts of interest thrown up by the Arab Spring, particularly in Bahrain. It was fair for people to ask “why does America promote democracy one way in some countries and another way in others?” But she said that each country in the region was different and the administration needed to weigh the risk to US forces, the potential threat from al-Qaeda and the need to keep oil supplies flowing. “It would be foolish to take a one-size-fits-all approach and barrel forward regardless of circumstances on the ground,” she said.

As tensions with Iran have escalated in recent years, the US has been keen to use arms sales to boost the military capabilities of its allies in the region, most notably the $60bn deal with Saudi Arabia which was announced in 2010.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:13 AM   #91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qabbaan View Post
Why should I care about this?

Some little island not even the size of rhode island, which has never been noteworthy for any reason, wants to replace their king with a bunch of radicals. So what?
If you don't care about human rights abuses and our own active role in the oppression of democracy movements worldwide, then you don't care. That's on you, and you're just wasting your time in this thread. Have at.

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Originally Posted by qabbaan View Post
Aren't you far left types always saying we can't go around policing every country in the world? The root of this nonsense is not even democracy vs no democracy. It's Sunni vs Shia. Why in the world is that any of our business?
Because it has to be our business. When we decided to get in bed with an autocratic ruler that murders his own people, this was the decision we'd inevitably have to face. We faced it with the Taliban, Hussein, Ghadaffi, Mubarak... Now we're facing it with Bahrain.

We've entrenched ourselves financially in Bahrain, there is no "let's do nothing" option.

We're either actively supporting a dictator murdering his own democratic protesters, or we're not. And we have recently decided that we are.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:16 AM   #92
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Originally Posted by qabbaan View Post
It doesn't matter if Obama does the same thing we castigated Bush for doing, because Obama has goodness in his heart.
I don't know what constitutes "castigating" in your eyes, but I thought my first several posts in this thread were genuine castigations.

Of course, apparently no castigation is genuine in this forum unless it's willing to come with a vow to change votes.

Which means, of course, that everybody in this forum is damned if they do, damned if they don't. If they never voice criticisms of their party, they are shills. If they voice criticisms of their party while still supporting their party, they are shills.

I guess that's the way DC sees things.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:19 AM   #93
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Originally Posted by qabbaan View Post
It doesn't matter if Obama does the same thing we castigated Bush for doing, because Obama has goodness in his heart.
That seems to be the idea that helps people like Direckshun cope with the cognitive dissonance that comes with being against supporting oppressive regimes while voting for politicians who support oppressive regimes.

If Holden Caulfield posted on here, I imagine his posts would look a lot like Direckshun's. Everyone around him is phony. Never mind that he does the same things the masses do. He does it out of thoughtfulness and nuance. Everyone else simply acts via stimulus and response.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:21 AM   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saul Good View Post
That seems to be the idea that helps people like Direckshun cope with the cognitive dissonance that comes with being against supporting oppressive regimes while voting for politicians who support oppressive regimes.
We both vote for candidates that support oppressive regimes.

We both vote for candidates that have done things we vastly disagree with.

It's a two party system. You do what you can. It's not rocket science.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:31 AM   #95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
We both vote for candidates that support oppressive regimes.

We both vote for candidates that have done things we vastly disagree with.

It's a two party system. You do what you can. It's not rocket science.
Have you considered other activities beside voting to show your opposition to Obama supplying these weapons? Perhaps organize a "sit-in" or some other form of public protest?
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:32 AM   #96
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donger View Post
Have you considered other activities beside voting to show your opposition to Obama supplying these weapons? Perhaps organize a "sit-in" or some other form of public protest?
You introduced voting to this thread. I've just been replying to you and Saul Good.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:34 AM   #97
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
You introduced voting to this thread. I've just been replying to you and Saul Good.
That's fine. So, are you going to do anything other than voting to show your opposition to Obama's arms sale?
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:41 AM   #98
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
That's fine. So, are you going to do anything other than voting to show your opposition to Obama's arms sale?
I don't talk about my personal life on this board.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:44 AM   #99
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
I don't talk about my personal life on this board.
Huh? You've tacitly acknowledged that you are still going to vote for Obama again, despite this arms sales which pains you so, but you won't say, "Yeah, I'm going to organize a protest!"?

I hope you realize how that makes you appear.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:45 AM   #100
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
We both vote for candidates that support oppressive regimes.

We both vote for candidates that have done things we vastly disagree with.

It's a two party system. You do what you can. It's not rocket science.
You dont have to convince me. If you feel good about it, keep on being a good little soldier.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:47 AM   #101
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
Huh? You've tacitly acknowledged that you are still going to vote for Obama again, despite this arms sales which pains you so, but you won't say, "Yeah, I'm going to organize a protest!"?

I hope you realize how that makes you appear.
I'm comfortable discussing what's going on between my ears. I'm not comfortable discussing what's going on in my personal life on this board.

Chances are, your conclusions on me have already been drawn. I am the sycophantic Democrat who always votes Democratic. As opposed to you, the principled Republican who always votes Republican.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:48 AM   #102
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Originally Posted by Saul Good View Post
You dont have to convince me. If you feel good about it, keep on being a good little soldier.
Anytime you want to actually rebut any of my previous dismantlings of your arguments in this thread, be my guest.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:51 AM   #103
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
I'm comfortable discussing going on between my ears. I'm not comfortable discussing what's going on in my personal life on this board.

Chances are, your conclusions on me have already been drawn. I am the sycophantic Democrat who always votes Democratic. As opposed to you, the principled Republican who always votes Republican.
I'm merely pointing out that you have options available to you beside voting. It's up to you to decide whether or not to exercise them. You show your support for the "Palestinians" with your avatar, right? Perhaps you could do something similar for the oppressed of Bahrain?
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:54 AM   #104
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I'm merely pointing out that you have options available to you beside voting. It's up to you to decide whether or not to exercise them.
I'm unaware of what prompted this civics lesson, but I'm already aware. Never claimed otherwise.
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Old 05-16-2012, 08:56 AM   #105
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
I'm merely pointing out that you have options available to you beside voting. It's up to you to decide whether or not to exercise them. You show your support for the "Palestinians" with your avatar, right? Perhaps you could do something similar for the oppressed of Bahrain?
Exactly, slacktivism should not discriminate against countries that are actually real countries.
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