redlegsmed | Indy Week

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Re: “Sour State

It's funny how progressives so often choose to be miserable, regardless of their state of residence. Happiness is a choice. A "state" of mind. Clever cartoon, though.

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Posted by redlegsmed on 07/12/2012 at 11:58 AM

Re: “How the Supreme Court's ruling on Obamacare reinforces corporate power

The 2700 plus page, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, will most certainly be repealed after President Obama is defeated in this Fall's election. Obama's defeat by landslide, followed by the posthaste repeal of Obamacare may occur just in time to save this country from the rampant tax and spend legacy of his administration.

1 like, 2 dislikes
Posted by redlegsmed on 07/08/2012 at 7:44 PM

Re: “Drone warfare: politically expedient and disturbingly inaccurate


In the comment below I refer mistakenly to LOAC as the "law of aerial combat." LOAC refers more broadly to the Law of Armed Conflict, "otherwise known as international humanitarian law or the law of war, [as it] applies to situations of armed conflict and governs the conduct of hostilities and the protection of persons during conflict."

Posted by redlegsmed on 05/14/2012 at 2:36 PM

Re: “The morning after Amendment 1: Your world. And mine.

Gays are not an underclass in this country, nor are they discriminated against in any systemmatic way. There is no reasonable comparison between the "struggle" for gay rights and the genuine struggle of blacks for civil rights.

Gay rights activists will, of course, play to the culture of victimology so prevalent in this country's politic today. They will do this in a futile and utterly misguided attempt to force an acceptance of gay marriage on us all.

Barack Obama will be voted out of office largely because of his stance on this issue. It will be a good day for all Americans and I know in my heart that the majority of blacks and latinos will vote EN BLOC against him. They will cast their votes as much for common sense and decency, as for the sanctity of marriage between one man and one woman. God Bless America...where the majority rules, in spite of Barack Obama's extreme efforts to the contrary, notwithstanding.

9 likes, 33 dislikes
Posted by redlegsmed on 05/14/2012 at 1:59 PM

Re: “Drone warfare: politically expedient and disturbingly inaccurate…

Laurie R. Blank, Director, International Humanitarian Law Clinic, Emory University School of Law concludes:

Finally, notwithstanding the extensive capabilities drones offer in the areas of distinction, proportionality and precautions, current developments demonstrate that drones also pose some potential risks to the development and interpretation of the law in ways that could endanger the central goal of protecting civilians and conducting hostilities in a lawful manner. Counterinsurgency strategy and mission imperatives appropriately seek to eliminate civilian casualties as much as possible in the fight for ―hearts and minds.‖

But international law does not require no civilian casualties; indeed, the law accepts that there will be incidental casualties from lawful attacks—a tragic but not criminal consequence of war. The combination of drones‘ highly precise targeting capabilities and strategic needs to reduce civilian casualties has led to a growing—and mistaken—perception that any civilian deaths are unlawful. It may seem that innocent civilians will be the beneficiaries of this development; in fact, the opposite could well be true. To the extent that drones thus begin to alter interpretations of distinction, proportionality, and precautions, the results may not be as protective for civilians as anticipated. A military force facing such a zero casualty standard will either disregard the law entirely as unreasonable, endangering civilians in the combat zone, or will refrain from military operations altogether to avoid legal violations, leaving its own citizens undefended from attacks. Both options leave innocent civilians unprotected and in danger. As a result, analyzing drones
as a weapon and the nature of drone strikes—from target acquisition to strike—within existing interpretations of [the Law of Aerial Combat] LOAC is critical to ensuring and enhancing civilian protections in wartime. Maximizing capabilities and effective decisionmaking is the most straightforward way to carrying out LOAC‘s key goals and principles.

Posted by redlegsmed on 05/14/2012 at 12:04 PM

Re: “Drone warfare: politically expedient and disturbingly inaccurate

Contrary to Mr. Weiler's assertions, workers at RAND Corporation and Standord University:

"find a negative correlation between drone strikes and militant violence after
controlling for local effects and pre-existing trends in militant attacks. The analysis suggests that while violence in FATA [Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan] remains high, drone strikes are associated with decreases in both the frequency and the lethality of militant attacks overall and in IED [Improvised Explosive Device] and suicide attacks specifically."


With regard to collateral civilian casulties, what can we say about those for which the terrorists are responsible? The terrorists, after all, pioneered the use of IEDs to kill and maim our warfighters in a multiplicity of horrendous ways.

And with respect to civilians,

Gen. H.R McMaster, the subject of the Wall Street Jornal's weekend interview;

"really earned his renown applying the tenets of counterinsurgency strategy, or COIN, during the war in Iraq. As a colonel in 2005, he took responsibility for a place called Tal Afar. In that city of 200,000 people, the insurgents' "savagery reached such a level that they stuffed the corpses of children with explosives and tossed them into the streets in order to kill grieving parents attempting to retrieve the bodies of their young," wrote Tal Afar's mayor in 2006. "This was the situation of our city until God prepared and delivered unto them the courageous soldiers of the 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment." (Remarks from the Mayor of Tal Afar)

Strategically the Rand and Stanford workers conclude:

"Finally, it is important to reiterate that any reduction in terrorist activity
associated with the drone campaign appears modest in scope. Although a
decline in violence in FATA in 2010 coincided with the peak of the drone
campaign, FATA militants remain active and violence remains high. To
the extent drone strikes ”work,” their effectiveness is more likely to lie in
disrupting militant operations at the tactical level than as a silver bullet that
will reverse the course of the war and singlehandedly defeat al Qaeda."

So, in the end, drones are just one more weapon in our quiver...But we must apply every available weapon to forclose the terrorist's desire to obtain a Pakistani nuclear weapon. (or any other nuclear device, for that matter)

The world has not seen the collateral losses that will occur if the terrorists go nuclear. As Dr. Edward Teller put it: "The living will envy the dead."

David Lanier
Carrboro, NC

(former consultant to the United States Marine Corps on Chemical, Biological, Radiological,Nuclear and High Explosives defense)

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by redlegsmed on 05/13/2012 at 3:08 PM

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