« The Potential for Abuse with Evangelical Ministry | Main | Barack Obama: My Kind Of Democrat »

June 11, 2005

Comments

Slarti
While the question "who lost China" surfaced when Chiang Kai Shek decamped from the mainland and took his army to Taiwan, the presumed answer to the question was given prominence with the Quemoy and Matsu Island Crisis. link might be a good place to start, and then try and follow the domestic reaction to the various events that occurred, which gives some explanation as to why the question raised the passions it did.

Also interesting to note that threats by the US to utilize nuclear weapons both during the crisis and in Korea encouraged China to develop its own nuclear weapons, as well as encouraging the Soviets to share their technical knowledge to assist the Chinese. The Russians evidently thought better of this later during the 2nd Quemoy incident and stopped providing nuclear aid to the Chinese, because in part they felt that China was provoking the incident in order to drum up soviet support. link. This was one of the main friction points that resulted in the China-USSR split.

Wanna blog any storms about this, Charles, where it's apt to have a greater effect against tyranny than, say, some other possibilities?

FTR, I have written about our relationship with the Uzbekistani goonacracy, Gary, and I stand in solidarity with Hilzoy on it. If you think it's blogstormworthy, knock yourself out, and feel free to add my link to your storm.

the topic was uranium enrichment facilities not atomic bomb-making facilities

No, Anarch. The original topic was the making of atomic bombs and that we should vaporize those facilities provided we had sufficient evidence. Gary brought up uranium enrichment, not me.

For those of you who like some cites with them there assertions, the thread that Chas is referring to is here, which references this earlier ObWi thread, which links to this Tacitus post. I believe that Chas 'proof' that these are facilities designed for atomic weapon manufacture are

The government has consistently denied it, but it's no secret that the mullahs care more about nuclear bombs than nuclear power in this oil-rich country. They've learned the tricks from North Korea and Iraq in how to evade IAEA inspectors. Their reactors are too large for research and too small for power generation, and eerily similar in size and design to bomb-producing plants in other countries.

Just to summarize, the proof seems to be that
-Iran is oil-rich
-their generators are too large for research, but too small for power generation

This is not to claim that the Iranians are completely innocent, but if this is the level of proof that is required, you may want commiserate with the prosecutor in the MJ case.

If one prefers a bit more thoughtfulness, check out this Foreign Affairs piece

"Well, I'm not exactly as conversant with history as I ought to be, but what does 'lost China' mean in this context, and who was it that did the losing?"

Kids today! (shakes head, backs away in frustration)

Charles:

the topic was uranium enrichment facilities not atomic bomb-making facilities

No, Anarch. The original topic was the making of atomic bombs and that we should vaporize those facilities provided we had sufficient evidence. Gary brought up uranium enrichment, not me.

I see it's not enough to link to the discussion, where it can simply be read, and quote from it. Apparently the entire relevant set of quotes needs to be requoted. I am unclear why this is required, but I shall attempt to help.

You wrote at June 1, 2005 06:35 PM, in this thread:

WRT to Iran, targeted strikes to vaporize their nuclear facilities are very much on the table.
I responded at June 1, 2005 07:05 PM
Just so we're clear, are you suggesting nuclear strikes on Iran, or that we have sufficient intelligence so that conventional bombing will be sufficiently damaging to their nuclear program? Assuming the latter, what estimates of "collateral damage" of civilian dead, due to facilities being near civilian clusters, do you deem acceptable? What estimates do you think are realistic? How long would such strikes, in your view, set the Iranian nuclear program back? Lastly, would you say the Iranians would be being unreasonable if they felt that a bombing campaign or strikes was -- the technical term is "an act of war" -- and they responded on that basis in some fashion?
You responded at June 1, 2005 07:59 PM:
Just so we're clear, are you suggesting nuclear strikes on Iran, or that we have sufficient intelligence so that conventional bombing will be sufficiently damaging to their nuclear program?

Targeted strikes with conventional weapons. Bunker busting nukes would do us more harm than good, politically. If Iran locates its military facilities too close to civilian populations, that's their problem. Also their problem if they consider our response to their belligerence an act of war.

I responded at June 1, 2005 08:14 PM:
"If Iran locates its military facilities too close to civilian populations, that's their problem."

Nuclear fuel enrichment facilities, which are legally their right under the Non-Proliferation Treaty, being "military facilities," of course, although there would seem to be no legal justification for this -- unless you have one in mind I'm not thinking of? (Mind, I'm all in favor of revising the NPT to, among other changes, tighten controls over enrichment -- but our every-five-year chance for that seems to have expired last week.)

"Also their problem if they consider our response to their belligerence an act of war."

Y'know, I find the idea of Iran having nuclear arms, and their present government, quite alarming. But I find it difficult to reasonably describe their proceeding with perfectly legal nuclear energy development as "belligerence" per se. How does that work? And are you seriously claiming that our launching our (hypothetical) bombing strikes on Iran would not be an act of war? You seem to be, but other than in an Alice-In-Wonderland Red Queen "words mean what I want them to mean" just because you want them to mean that, way, this seems... difficult to explain. Presumably if Iran bombed some of our nuclear facilities (say, the Indian Point plants just outside NYC), we'd be being "belligerent" if we thought that was, well, kinda an act of war. Our wacky interpretation, their problem.

I mean, Charles, are there in fact objective rules as to what constitutes an act of war or not? Or do you just get to make them up out of whole cloth? Really, this is a quite interesting chain of thought.

Various others, such as Anarch, crionna, and bob mcmanus, also questioned you on these points. You ceased to respond on any of these points, although you took up another at June 1, 2005 09:50 PM. You then never replied again on that thread.

In this thread, above, on June 13, 2005 04:35 PM, you wrote:

Gary, I wrote that, with sufficient evidence, that we go after their atomic bomb-making facilities, an acitivity which breaks the bounds of "perfectly legal" in my book.
So, as it currently stands -- and do feel free to modify, revise, extend, or withdraw, any of your remarks -- you believe that any "nuclear facility" is a "military facility," that Iran's "nuclear facilities" should be bombed, and your cite for the legality of this is "my book." If we bomb these facilities, and they feel it is an act of war, that is "their problem." Feel free to otherwise respond to my questions of June 1, 2005 08:14 PM and June 1, 2005 08:14 PM, as well as clarifying any of the above, please.

After having girded my loins and waded back into the original threads... ummmm... what LJ and Gary said.

*ungirds*

The comments to this entry are closed.