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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 05-15-2012, 10:44 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
I don't think you have a remote understanding of the popular uprisings in the Middle East over the past few years.

Call it a hunch.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:47 PM   #32
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saul Good View Post
On the contrary, I understand it all too well. That's why I don't blindly jump for joy when a regime, deeply flawed though it may be, is ousted.
Anybody jumping for joy during any governmental transition in the Middle East is, first of all, going to be waiting a while. But second of all, they'd be way, way premature.

Like I said, even if *poof* Assad were overthrown today in Syria, we'd be looking at an extremely long, arduous journey to a productive government that may never come.

But that doesn't mean we should aid in the active suppression of people protesting for it.

That's the thing -- there's a difference between doing nothing, and actively working against it. We're actively working against it.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:50 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Anybody jumping for joy during any governmental transition in the Middle East is, first of all, going to be waiting a while. But second of all, they'd be way, way premature.

Like I said, even if *poof* Assad were overthrown today in Syria, we'd be looking at an extremely long, arduous journey to a productive government that may never come.

But that doesn't mean we should interfere in the active suppression of people protesting for it.

That's the thing -- there's a difference between doing nothing, and actively working against it. We're actively working against it.
We are engaging in commerce. That is different than actively working against it. What they do with their purchases is on them. Refusing to deal with them could just as easily be considered actively supporting the overthrow of an Arab government. I'm sure that would go over well.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:53 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
If we can make a buck by selling weapons to a King murdering his democratic protestors?

With our history?

Does the phrase "no taxation without representation" ring a bell? Or are you perfectly fine with funding King George.
You're comparing radical Islamists to revolutionary Americans?

You're an idiot.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:54 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
But that doesn't mean we should aid in the active suppression of people protesting for it.
And yet you'll vote for a POTUS and be complicit in doing the same (according to you) to the freedom fighters of Bahrain. Why the distinction?
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:55 PM   #36
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saul Good View Post
We are engaging in commerce. That is different than actively working against it. What they do with their purchases is on them.
Nope.

We're selling a shotgun to a known murder, knowing exactly how he's going to use it.

We actually do have a choice not to do that. Hard to believe, I know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Saul Good View Post
Refusing to deal with them could just as easily be considered actively supporting the overthrow of an Arab government. I'm sure that would go over well.
Too bad. We don't have a choice -- we're actively involved one way or the other. That's what happens when you open up your pocketbooks to antidemocratic dictators overseas, you invariably end up here.

We knew exactly who we were doing business with, just like we did with the Taliban, just like we did with Saddam Hussein. Now all of us a sudden we're supposed to feign ignorance in order to save face -- yet again.

If you gotta pick a side, pick the one that's not murdering people in the streets.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:56 PM   #37
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brock View Post
You're comparing radical Islamists to revolutionary Americans?
The Arab Spring wasn't driven by radicalism, it was driven by shit governance that didn't give two shits about their peoples.

Radical Islamists have been attempting to capitalizing off of it.

Don't equate everything Middle Easterners do to radical Islamism.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:58 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
And yet you'll vote for a POTUS and be complicit in doing the same (according to you) to the freedom fighters of Bahrain. Why the distinction?
Because I'm an active participant in my paltry two-party democratic system, and I believe the Democratic pill is less bitter than the Republican one.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:59 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
.

Don't equate everything Middle Easterners do to radical Islamism.
I dissagree . They all look the same
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:00 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Because I'm an active participant in my paltry two-party democratic system, and I believe the Democratic pill is less bitter than the Republican one.
Are you aware that you aren't required to vote? Surely that would be more palatable to your sensitive tongue.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:02 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Anybody jumping for joy during any governmental transition in the Middle East is, first of all, going to be waiting a while. But second of all, they'd be way, way premature.

Like I said, even if *poof* Assad were overthrown today in Syria, we'd be looking at an extremely long, arduous journey to a productive government that may never come.

But that doesn't mean we should aid in the active suppression of people protesting for it.

That's the thing -- there's a difference between doing nothing, and actively working against it. We're actively working against it.
Are you also upset the US does buisiness with China? Go there and try to complain or protest about the forced abortions or any human rights abuses and see what happens.

They won't even take shit from Batman.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:03 PM   #42
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Originally Posted by Donger View Post
Are you aware that you aren't required to vote?
Your voting advice belongs in a separate thread.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:10 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Your voting advice belongs in a separate thread.
No, it really doesn't. If you are so upset by this, you shouldn't vote for Obama. If you vote for Obama, you are complicit in helping what you allegedly disdain.

The choice is yours.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:12 PM   #44
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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No, it really doesn't. If you are so upset by this, you shouldn't vote for Obama. If you vote for Obama, you are complicit in helping what you allegedly disdain.
Thanks, Taco John. But I don't really have a choice in that regard. Romney and Obama are a push on that score, hell Romney might even be more aggressive in aiding and abetting the military industrial complex. Republicans usually are, and Romney has provided little rhetoric to suggest he'd be any different.

So long as the Democratic pill is less bitter, that's the one I'm selecting.

Get back to me when we abandon the winner-take-all system in favor of proportional representation.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:14 PM   #45
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Thanks, Taco John. But I don't really have a choice in that regard. Romney and Obama are a push on that score, hell Romney might even be more aggressive in aiding and abetting the military industrial complex. Republicans usually are, and Romney has provided little rhetoric to suggest he'd be any different.

So long as the Democratic pill is less bitter, that's the one I'm selecting.

Get back to me when we abandon the winner-take-all system in favor of proportional representation.
It may be a less bitter pill, but you still don't have to swallow ANY pill. If you chose to swallow the less bitter pill, you are complicit. Period.
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