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-   -   Should I refuse to serve in the military out of a moral standpoint? (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=868547)

mifset 01-07-2019 06:07 PM

Should I refuse to serve in the military out of a moral standpoint?
 
As an Israeli citizen I am forced to serve in the military for roughly three years. However, due to my health conditions I am positive that I can get an exemption if I wanted to. So now I have a dilemma of whether to serve or not and I want to do whatever would be more morally right. My thought process is this: If I refuse to serve in the military, thereís a higher chance that it would influence other people to not serve in the military as well and so eventually the power of the Israel military will decrease and Israel would have to resort to a peace solution with the Arabs in Palestine (as they canít maintain their occupation of Palestine any longer) and thus it would reduce the deaths caused by the Israel/Palestine conflict. But on the other hand, it is also possible that even if the power of the Israel military would decrease they would still try to maintain their occupation of Palestine but because they are weaker they would lose the fight causing more soldiers to die in the process. So basically, Israelís military power decreasing would be the main motivation for me to choose not to serve, and therefore my question is: if Israelís military power was decreased would that result in a better future for everyone (possibly by pushing a peace solution for Israel and Palestine) or would that result in a worse future for everyone (causing more deaths as there would be less security for Israel). The future obviously canít be predicted but whatís more likely in your opinion? so that I could know whether itís more moral to serve in the Israel military and contribute to it or refuse to serve.

Darren Garrison 01-07-2019 06:11 PM

Yes.

Chronos 01-07-2019 06:21 PM

[Moderating]
No way is there a factual answer to this. Moving to GD.

DPRK 01-07-2019 06:23 PM

The factual answer is that- correct me if I'm wrong- members of the military are not permitted to express or try to influence politics? So even a general officer would not be deciding policy towards, say, the Palestinian peace talks. Therefore, it seems that if you care about that sort of activism you have to stay out of the military.

Health exemption and conscientious objection are completely different things, by the way. You are asking about the latter.

Btw if you as an individual are not in the military that does not ipso facto weaken it, since they can just recruit one extra guy.

Procrustus 01-07-2019 06:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mifset (Post 21417438)
My thought process is this: If I refuse to serve in the military, thereís a higher chance that it would influence other people to not serve in the military as well and so eventually the power of the Israel military will decrease and Israel would have to resort to a peace solution with the Arabs in Palestine (as they canít maintain their occupation of Palestine any longer) and thus it would reduce the deaths caused by the Israel/Palestine conflict.

When I refused to sign up for the U.S. Selective Service in 1980, I thought something similar. I objected to being used as a pawn with Carter's dispute with the Soviet Union. I knew I was committing a crime, but thought if enough people did the same "they can't prosecute all of us" and the whole thing would fall apart. Long story short, almost everyone signed up as required by law. I suspect your act of defiance will yield a similar level of success. (people would probably give your views more credibility of you did serve in the armed forces.)

Nonetheless, we all have to follow our own conscience. Best of luck to you.

DPRK 01-07-2019 06:33 PM

I see this is moved. In that case, you must examine your motivations (are you trying to "weaken" the army, are you a pacifist, is it political (would fighting someone besides the Palestinians be OK?), and so on, in order to engage in meaningful civil disobedience. People will surely ask you these things, and some reasons are better than others.

Kent Clark 01-07-2019 07:09 PM

If you claim conscientious objector status (that's what we call it in the U.S.) aren't you still obligated to complete national service in some other way? So you serve in a hospital, and the person who might otherwise have been assigned to the hospital is instead assigned to the IDF. Do you believe that would influence other people?

Or are you willing to refuse any kind of service and accept the consequences that go with it?

mifset 01-07-2019 07:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DPRK (Post 21417490)
I see this is moved. In that case, you must examine your motivations (are you trying to "weaken" the army, are you a pacifist, is it political (would fighting someone besides the Palestinians be OK?), and so on, in order to engage in meaningful civil disobedience. People will surely ask you these things, and some reasons are better than others.

My motivation is to ultimately reduce the number of deaths in the world. If weakening the army would result in that then it would indeed be my goal. I know that the odds that I would actually be able to influence enough people not to serve that it would cause an actual change are very slim. But as long as I'm "working towards that goal" by not serving that's all that matters right?

All I want is to be able to justify whatever decision I make and to not feel (later in life) that I've been selfish because I didn't serve.

mifset 01-07-2019 07:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kunilou (Post 21417547)
If you claim conscientious objector status (that's what we call it in the U.S.) aren't you still obligated to complete national service in some other way? So you serve in a hospital, and the person who might otherwise have been assigned to the hospital is instead assigned to the IDF. Do you believe that would influence other people?

Or are you willing to refuse any kind of service and accept the consequences that go with it?

I won't be obligated to do some other national service because I would be getting a medical exemption. The IDF doesn't request you to do national service in other ways if your exemption is justified.

andros 01-07-2019 08:04 PM

All morality is individual. We cannot predict the future, and we cannot be responsible for the actions of others. If you have a moral objection to taking arms and potentially being ordered to use them, you absolutely must follow your conscience.

beowulff 01-07-2019 08:08 PM

If you feel that it is unethical to serve, than that should be your reason.
Don’t use some lame medical excuse to enable you to dodge the issue.

HMS Irruncible 01-07-2019 08:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mifset (Post 21417438)
As an Israeli citizen I am forced to serve in the military for roughly three years. However, due to my health conditions I am positive that I can get an exemption if I wanted to. So now I have a dilemma of whether to serve or not and I want to do whatever would be more morally right. My thought process is this: If I refuse to serve in the military, thereís a higher chance that it would influence other people to not serve in the military as well and so eventually the power of the Israel military will decrease and Israel would have to resort to a peace solution with the Arabs in Palestine (as they canít maintain their occupation of Palestine any longer) and thus it would reduce the deaths caused by the Israel/Palestine conflict. But on the other hand, it is also possible that even if the power of the Israel military would decrease they would still try to maintain their occupation of Palestine but because they are weaker they would lose the fight causing more soldiers to die in the process. So basically, Israelís military power decreasing would be the main motivation for me to choose not to serve, and therefore my question is: if Israelís military power was decreased would that result in a better future for everyone (possibly by pushing a peace solution for Israel and Palestine) or would that result in a worse future for everyone (causing more deaths as there would be less security for Israel). The future obviously canít be predicted but whatís more likely in your opinion? so that I could know whether itís more moral to serve in the Israel military and contribute to it or refuse to serve.

If you qualify for an exemption and don't take it, you're probably putting yourself and others at risk because you can't fully execute your military duties. That's reason enough to duck military service.

Take the exemption. Donate your time to some cause that satisfies your values.

Darren Garrison 01-07-2019 08:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mifset (Post 21417559)
My motivation is to ultimately reduce the number of deaths in the world.


Well, each individual human (okay, matched pairs of individual humans) has the potential to produce children, who produce children, who produce children, etc. into infinity. All of which will eventually die. Killing people now (the younger, the better) would therefore prevent orders of magnitude more deaths in the future.

UDS 01-07-2019 08:29 PM

If you seek and obtain a medical exemption, there's no reason to think that your non-service would inspire others to decline to serve for ethical/conscientious reasons. If part of your moral calculation here involves bearing witness to your beliefs in the hope of influencing others, then surely you should identify as a conscientious objector, not as medically unfit?

Your key question is whether (marginally) weakening Israeli military capacity will lead to less deaths (because Israel has a greater incentive to seek and accept a peace settlement) or more deaths (conflict intensifies as Israel is perceived to be more :"defeatable"). Obviously nobody can offer you a definitive answer about this. You should also bear in mind that those who do offer answers are quite likely to be offering faith-based rationaliisations; they are motivated to believe that a strong defence capacity will lead to peace and therefore they more easily come to believe that. Or they are motivated to believe the reverse, and so come to believe that. Finally you should consider that the answer may not be a simple binary; conceivably, a militarily weaker Israel could lead to an intensification of the conflict, leading to an earlier peace settlement than would otherwise have happened. Does that lead to more deaths or less deaths overall? Impossible to say.

And, finally, I point to a possible further complicating factor; when you talk about an early peace settlement you talk about reducing "deaths caused by the Israel/Palestine conflict", but when you talk about a militariily weaker Israel you speak of "causing more soldiers to die in the process". Are you attributing a particular ethical signficance to the deaths of soldiers in particular, in distinction from other deaths? If so, you need to be clear about what that is.

The bottom line, I think, is that the basis that you are seeking to answser this question on is unlikely to offer you a satisfactory answer. "Which course of action will result in fewer deaths?" (or ". . . fewer of the deaths that I prioritise avoiding?") is unlikely to be capable of answer with any certainty. It's quite possible that, consciously or subsconsciously, you will end up accepting whichever answer points to the course of action to which you are drawn for other, possibly unacknowledged, reasons. And of course either way your personal actions can only affect Israeli military capacity in the most marginal way.

There are other ways of approaching the question, e.g.

- Should we, as a community, be relying on military force to address this question? Is that approach likely to minimise deaths? If you conclude "yes", then serve; if you conclude "no", then don't serve. But, in either case, don't base this on any calcuation of what your individual actions will achieve; instead think of what the community's collective actions will acheive, and of whether you want to be part of those actions.

- Am I, as an individual, willing to use violence in this context? Is it justified? Is it conscionable? If no, then don't serve. Again, you don't need to justify this by an appeal to what your refusal to serve may achieve. Nor do you need to believe, or assert, that others should not use violence; just that you should not.

Ike Witt 01-08-2019 09:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DPRK (Post 21417468)
Btw if you as an individual are not in the military that does not ipso facto weaken it, since they can just recruit one extra guy.

That isn't how it works in Israel. There is compulsory service if you are over 18 with some few exclusions.

senoy 01-08-2019 09:38 AM

So, is a strong Israel going to cause more deaths or less deaths than a weak Israel? I would say it would cause less. The reason why is that the Rubicon has already been crossed. Israel currently is strong, so that gives a measure of stability simply because you know what the situation is. If Israel were to become weaker, then the shifting of the power balance would make it more likely for conflict to occur. Instability and chaos always bring death. Syria is a great example of this. No one is under any illusions that Assad was an angel when he had a monopoly on power, but there was a certain amount of security in Syria when he was seen as undefeatable. It was only after his position weakened and a large part of his army deserted while other groups thought they were strong enough to challenge him that Syria turned into a hellscape. We can see the same thing in Iraq and really in many, many conflicts. When the balance of power changes, the scrambling for new positions tends to bring with it a great deal of destruction. Shifting that balance of power in a place as explosive as the Middle East is playing with fire. Yes, that means it sucks to be Palestinian, but asking for a military solution to solve that crisis is fool-hardy.

WillFarnaby 01-08-2019 01:51 PM

Do strong armies or weak armies cause more death? The question answers itself.

Become a businessman and do business with Palestinians if possible. Political and military impact by one individual pales in comparison to the impact an individual can have in voluntary arrangements.

The Other Waldo Pepper 01-08-2019 02:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WillFarnaby (Post 21418940)
Do strong armies or weak armies cause more death? The question answers itself.

Do strong armies or weak ones deter more threats? And, since some folks donít get deterred: do strong armies or weak ones find it easier to gun down would-be killers? And: to the extent that a strong army can prevail using conventional weapons, and a weak one is more likely to resort to WMDs ó what?

WillFarnaby 01-08-2019 02:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper (Post 21418963)
Do strong armies or weak ones deter more threats? And, since some folks don’t get deterred: do strong armies or weak ones find it easier to gun down would-be killers? And: to the extent that a strong army can prevail using conventional weapons, and a weak one is more likely to resort to WMDs — what?

I guess the US military was weak, that’s why it resorted to WMDs. Which weak armies resorted to WMDs?

Strong armies tend to provoke conflict. See the US and Israel.

If an army is weak, it represents little threat. In this case it is either not bothered by other armies, or it pays tribute in one way or another. Both preferable to competitive military buildup of the goal is avoiding death.

Witness the US military buildup of the ‘80s. They had a bunch of conventional weapons laying around so military adventures were seen as less costly. This led to Iraq I and II, Clinton’s bombings, Afghanistan occupation, etc.

The Syrian regime was not attacked because they were weak. They were attacked because the Saudi-backed jihadists had gained strength. Then we saw further foreign interventions into the conflict making both sides stronger and increasing death precipitously.

The Soviets and Chinese had strong militaries leading to disastrous domestic outcomes.

Shodan 01-08-2019 02:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mifset (Post 21417438)
So basically, Israelís military power decreasing would be the main motivation for me to choose not to serve, and therefore my question is: if Israelís military power was decreased would that result in a better future for everyone (possibly by pushing a peace solution for Israel and Palestine) or would that result in a worse future for everyone (causing more deaths as there would be less security for Israel). The future obviously canít be predicted but whatís more likely in your opinion?

The second is more likely, IMO.

Who is more likely to be attacked, the weak or the strong? The question appears to me to answer itself. Hizbollah and Hamas and the others aren't going to be more likely to negotiate with a weak Israel than with a strong one. And a strong Israel is more capable of enforcing an agreement if one is reached.

Do what you think is right. My perspective is skewed by the fact that
A) I am not Israeli
B) I don't think the Palestinians are being treated particularly badly.

YMMV.

Regards,
Shodan

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor 01-08-2019 04:20 PM

Quote:

“Pacifism is a shifty doctrine under which a man accept the benefits of the social group without being willing to pay-and claims a halo for his dishonesty.”

― Robert Heinlein

Ahem.

andros 01-08-2019 04:30 PM

Ok, but Bob was a diiiiick.

Urbanredneck 01-08-2019 05:09 PM

I can see your anger at the Palestinian situation but the thing is Isreal is surrounded by hostile nations who want to wipe Isreal out. I'm thinking about all the Arab-Isreali wars of the past. Isreal is also a small nation and needs everyone.

eschereal 01-08-2019 05:25 PM

If you have physical fitness issues and moral uncertainty (dubious emotional fitness), you probably do not belong in the military, which means that avoiding service would have the opposite effect of weakening it: they are probably stronger without you.

andros 01-08-2019 06:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Urbanredneck (Post 21419380)
I can see your anger at the Palestinian situation but the thing is Isreal is surrounded by hostile nations who want to wipe Isreal out. I'm thinking about all the Arab-Isreali wars of the past. Isreal is also a small nation and needs everyone.

Israel.

If it helps, remember that "El" means "God," so you get all sorts of names like Israel ("God triumphant," or "God contended"), Michael ("Who is like God"), or Raphael ("God has healed").

Scumpup 01-08-2019 06:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor (Post 21419291)
Ahem.

Logical fallacy. Appeal to increasingly forgotten science fiction writer.

DPRK 01-08-2019 06:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by andros (Post 21419472)
Israel.

If it helps, remember that "El" means "God," so you get all sorts of names like Israel ("God triumphant," or "God contended"), Michael ("Who is like God"), or Raphael ("God has healed").

That night Jacob got up and took his two wives, his two female servants and his eleven sons and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. After he had sent them across the stream, he sent over all his possessions. So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacobís hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. Then the man said, ďLet me go, for it is daybreak.Ē

But Jacob replied, ďI will not let you go unless you bless me.Ē

The man asked him, ďWhat is your name?Ē

ďJacob,Ē he answered.

Then the man said, ďYour name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.Ē

WillFarnaby 01-08-2019 07:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor (Post 21419291)
Ahem.

Pacifists have been dying because of reckless jingoists for centuries. They have paid more than their share.

DinoR 01-08-2019 08:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mifset (Post 21417438)
My thought process is this: If I refuse to serve in the military, thereís a higher chance that it would influence other people to not serve in the military as well and so eventually the power of the Israel military will decrease

I seriously question the notion that you'll have any real effect on the military capability of Israel. Maybe if you start some large political movement that significantly cuts into conscription numbers you could have a small effect. If you are just telling friends, family, and acquaintances the numbers you're likely to influence are strategically meaningless. The IDF has also been gradually moving towards a more long term professional force. Even a major movement against conscription may fail to produce the effect you think it will. There's a potential for increasing the power of the IDF if your movement pushes them into reforms that increases reliance on better trained and long service volunteers.

DPRK 01-08-2019 08:45 PM

Also, in Israel the military is an arm of the state AFAIK, as I suggested in my first reply. If your political movement gain ascendancy, your party is the one dictating military and foreign policy (like whether to enter or sidestep certain conflicts).

UDS 01-08-2019 08:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor (Post 21419291)
Ahem.

OP does not identify as a pacifist or express pacifist view, nor indeed do they identify as a follower of St. Robert of Heinlein, so the pertinence of this quote is not immediately apparant.

Alessan 01-08-2019 11:49 PM

Look, I’m hardly objective. I’m typing this om my phone from my base in miluim (that’s IDF resereves). I’m heading out to the Hebron area tonight, despite the fact that I personally object to Israel being in the Territories.

That said, comsider a few things: Israelis don’t get more concillatory when they feel less confident in their strength, they become more violent. It’s in our national character. Weakening the IDF will probably only make things worse.

Second, even if a peace deal can be reached with the Palestinians - and I have a hard time figuring out how one can be - it probably won’t end the conflict. I wish it would, but it probably won’t. You may see peace in your lifetime, but I likely will not.

Finally, remember that Israel’s greatest peaceniks, from Abie Natan to Yitzhak Rabin, all served, and served with distinction. Do your duty to your country, and then work to change it. Keep the moral high ground. And vote against Bibi in March!

Bullitt 01-09-2019 07:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mifset (Post 21417559)
My motivation is to ultimately reduce the number of deaths in the world.

Then serve, and serve well.

Peace through strength.

WillFarnaby 01-09-2019 09:38 AM

Israel itself was established with the aid of strong armies. The result was increased death. You see, strong armies do things like colonize, conquer territory, and occupy foreign lands. These lead to lasting consequences and deterioration of cultures at home and abroad.

Weak armies may react impetuously. Sounds like a theory. Are you saying they initiate conflicts that wouldn’t have happened otherwise?

I would like some people to point to weak armies that have done that so we can discuss it. The killings of strong armies have already been mentioned.

In regards to a weak nation becoming more violent, even if you take this as a given, it does not follow that the military of that nation should be sttrengthened. The strength of the military is increased at the expense of national strength. Take the US as an example.

Alessan 01-09-2019 09:49 AM

The United States is an example of nothing. You guys have two huge oceans to protect yourselves from invasion; most of us don’t have luxuries like that.

Geography is destiny.

Shodan 01-09-2019 10:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WillFarnaby (Post 21420529)
Israel itself was established with the aid of strong armies. The result was increased death. You see, strong armies do things like colonize, conquer territory, and occupy foreign lands. These lead to lasting consequences and deterioration of cultures at home and abroad.

This is true. Keep in mind that the weak nations are the ones being colonized, conquered, and occupied. See, for instance, the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Kuwait's being weaker didn't prevent a war. Their conquest was prevented/undone by a stronger military - namely the US and the other coalition members.
Quote:

n regards to a weak nation becoming more violent, even if you take this as a given, it does not follow that the military of that nation should be sttrengthened. The strength of the military is increased at the expense of national strength. Take the US as an example.
I don't think the US is a good example.

In 1940, the US was weak militarily. The Japanese thought we could be intimidated into not becoming strong militarily. They were mistaken. Then in 1945 we were the strongest nation on earth, both because the Axis powers were defeated and our allies were exhausted, and also because we had the Bomb. Then the Soviets got the Bomb, and from 1948 on there were no more world wars - certainly low-level conflicts and proxy wars, but not WWIII. Even in 1945-1948, the US had the Bomb and a huge edge in military power, and we did not respond to the Berlin blockade and the takeover of the Warsaw Pact nations with further war.

You are correct that much of the overwhelming advantage of the US from 1945 thru the 50s was because our industrial base was untouched and that of Japan and Germany and France had been devastated. But we implemented the Marshall Plan to rebuild the Europe that was still free to have strong allies. To say the least, that involved major changes to the cultures of Japan and Germany. But it wasn't a question of not changing cultures, or not having WWII. It was a question of who was going to conquer who, and change whose culture.

Regards,
Shodan

Bullitt 01-09-2019 10:25 AM

Like I said: peace through strength.

WillFarnaby 01-09-2019 10:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Alessan (Post 21420562)
The United States is an example of nothing. You guys have two huge oceans to protect yourselves from invasion; most of us donít have luxuries like that.

Geography is destiny.

The US is an example of strong military that has weakened the nation. The strong military has made enemies abroad and entangled the country in major wars, bringing death to many foreigners and countrymen. It also diverts capital, human, and technological resources from prosperity-creating areas.

Ideology is destiny. There was no need for strong armies to establish a Jewish homeland, but ideology led to a geographical nation established by strong armies. The strength of an army has nothing to do with geography. The US has a strong army. Israel has a strong army. France has a strong army. The key factor here is ideology, not geography.

If the Israeli government would refrain from doing things that strong armies do, they wouldnít have so many problems. They canít. No government can. The answer is to weaken the military so the politicians and military leaders canít do much with it.

Alessan 01-09-2019 10:42 AM

Israel was invaded by seven foreign armies the day it declared independence. I thing that hints that a string army might have been neccessary for its survival.

Save your Liberatarian bullshit for the U.S. and keep it out of a region for which it has absolutely no relevance and which you do not understand. And stop hijacking a potentially interesting thread.

WillFarnaby 01-09-2019 11:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shodan (Post 21420648)
This is true. Keep in mind that the weak nations are the ones being colonized, conquered, and occupied. See, for instance, the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Kuwait's being weaker didn't prevent a war. Their conquest was prevented/undone by a stronger military - namely the US and the other coalition members.I don't think the US is a good example.

Yes but if Iraq had a weaker military, there may have been no conflict. Israel is already the much stronger military like Iraq was in relation to Kuwait.

Also, the US gave Saddam the green light to invade, so the strongest military couldnít help itself from doing something that led to more net death in the world. If the US army was weaker, they may have not got into the conflict, and perhaps Kuwait could have paid a tribute to Saddam to avoid war. We donít know what would happen if the elephant is not in the room.

In addition, the country of Iraq was created in a haphazard way by strong armies, leading to a tyrannical dictator.

Quote:

In 1940, the US was weak militarily. The Japanese thought we could be intimidated into not becoming strong militarily. They were mistaken. Then in 1945 we were the strongest nation on earth, both because the Axis powers were defeated and our allies were exhausted, and also because we had the Bomb.
Japan was another strong army that behaved foolishly and caused death to many foreigners and countrymen.

Yes the US was able to be the strongest after WWII despite getting involved in the war. Imagine if they had stayed out how strong the economy would have been. The US was the strongest nation before WWI, in the antebellum period, and after WWII, the strength of the US military was not the reason we were so strong, it was capitalism.


Quote:

Then the Soviets got the Bomb, and from 1948 on there were no more world wars - certainly low-level conflicts and proxy wars, but not WWIII. Even in 1945-1948, the US had the Bomb and a huge edge in military power, and we did not respond to the Berlin blockade and the takeover of the Warsaw Pact nations with further war.
There was no large scale wars because the countries were tired of war making. They instead integrated their economies, lowering the chance of war and strengthening their economies.

Quote:

You are correct that much of the overwhelming advantage of the US from 1945 thru the 50s was because our industrial base was untouched and that of Japan and Germany and France had been devastated. But we implemented the Marshall Plan to rebuild the Europe that was still free to have strong allies. To say the least, that involved major changes to the cultures of Japan and Germany. But it wasn't a question of not changing cultures, or not having WWII. It was a question of who was going to conquer who, and change whose culture.

Regards,
Shodan
If the US remained a strong neutral country, there would have been no conquest by Japan or Germany or anyone else. The USí strong army led to adventures in the Pacific and conflict with Japan, we had no business in conquering Hawaii, as a strong army, from the beginning.

Also, the OP said he is focused on decreasing death, not any kind of maintenance of his culture or national greatness. If Israel became a tiny military who paid tribute, this would accomplish the goal of decreasing death.

WillFarnaby 01-09-2019 11:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Alessan (Post 21420692)
Israel was invaded by seven foreign armies the day it declared independence. I thing that hints that a string army might have been neccessary for its survival.

Save your Liberatarian bullshit for the U.S. and keep it out of a region for which it has absolutely no relevance and which you do not understand. And stop hijacking a potentially interesting thread.

How am hijacking the thread? The OP is interested in decreasing death. I gave him options that would do so. These include in refraining from killing by not joining the military and strengthening bonds between societies by engaging in trade. These are time-tested ways for social cohesion.

Annexed lands usually do require strong armies to survive.

I can understand why a member of the armed forces in Israel would be upset about libertarianism in the US, but I am not even talking about libertarianism. I am talking about the history of strong armies and weak ones. Strong ones lead to more death.

Shodan 01-09-2019 11:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WillFarnaby (Post 21420679)
If the Israeli government would refrain from doing things that strong armies do, they wouldnít have so many problems.

AFAICT what Israel would refrain from doing if they didn't have a strong military is continue to exist.
Quote:

The answer is to weaken the military so the politicians and military leaders canít do much with it.
As mentioned, the Kuwaiti politicians and military leaders couldn't do much with their army either.

Regards,
Shodan

WillFarnaby 01-09-2019 11:30 AM

As the WWII conflict ended, and militaries disbanded or were shrank drastically, the world became more peaceful and prosperous. Imagine that.

WillFarnaby 01-09-2019 11:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shodan (Post 21420790)
AFAICT what Israel would refrain from doing if they didn't have a strong military is continue to exist.As mentioned, the Kuwaiti politicians and military leaders couldn't do much with their army either.

Regards,
Shodan

They should refrain from colonizing and blockading but since they are strong, they do these things.

It would make more sense to compare Israel to Iraq. Israel is expanding territorially through the settlements and has a much more powerful military. They also have the US green light Saddam though he had. The US is another military that causes problems through its strength.

Shodan 01-09-2019 11:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WillFarnaby (Post 21420746)
Yes but if Iraq had a weaker military, there may have been no conflict.

If Iraq had been weaker than Kuwait, you may be correct that Iraq would not have invaded. The problem is, they weren't, so they did.
Quote:

Israel is already the much stronger military like Iraq was in relation to Kuwait.
No doubt this explains why Israel's neighbors don't treat Israel as Iraq treated Kuwait.

Another counterpoint is that Saddam invaded Kuwait in large part because he needed Kuwait's oil revenue to pay the debts he incurred in waging war against nations like Iran. So that may be a partial example of a country who wages war because they are weak rather than because they are strong.
Quote:

Also, the US gave Saddam the green light to invade...
I don't believe this statement is accurate. Trying to avoid confrontation is not the same thing as saying "go ahead".
Quote:

Yes the US was able to be the strongest after WWII despite getting involved in the war. Imagine if they had stayed out how strong the economy would have been. The US was the strongest nation before WWI, in the antebellum period, and after WWII, the strength of the US military was not the reason we were so strong, it was capitalism.
I don't think it would have been good for America for Japan to conquer the Pacific, or for Germany to conquer Europe.
Quote:

There was no large scale wars because the countries were tired of war making.
Throughout the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s? That's pretty tired.

Quote:

Also, the OP said he is focused on decreasing death, not any kind of maintenance of his culture or national greatness. If Israel became a tiny military who paid tribute, this would accomplish the goal of decreasing death.
If you are suggesting that Israel should simply have surrendered in 1948 or 1967 or 1973, and that they would be better off if they had, I disagree.

If you can come up with an example of a country attacking another because the other is too strong, I would like to see it.

Regards,
Shodan

Alessan 01-09-2019 12:11 PM

Your problem, Will, is that you can’t stop thinking like an American. You think that all wars are wars of choice - which is true for you, thanks to the aforementioned oceans. Here in the real world, usually only one side of a war is there willingly, and that side is most often the side with the stronger military. I׳d rather be on that side side than the other.

Ravenman 01-09-2019 12:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Alessan (Post 21420891)
Your problem, Will, is that you canít stop thinking like an American. You think that all wars are wars of choice - ....

Eh, he probably has argued at one time or another that the South had no choice but to fight.

WillFarnaby 01-09-2019 02:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Alessan (Post 21420891)
Your problem, Will, is that you can’t stop thinking like an American. You think that all wars are wars of choice - which is true for you, thanks to the aforementioned oceans. Here in the real world, usually only one side of a war is there willingly, and that side is most often the side with the stronger military. I׳d rather be on that side side than the other.

That may be true, but I am arguing that stronger militaries lead to more deaths, not which side dies more. Do you think if the military arm of Hamas was stronger that it would lead to more or less death? They exist in your real world. You say when the Israelis feel weak, they become violent, how do you think the Palestinians respond to being in that condition? You seek to increase this imbalance.

I had no idea the US was not part of the real world, though I agree that many of the citizens do not seem acquainted with it.



Quote:

Originally Posted by Shodan (Post 21420855)
If Iraq had been weaker than Kuwait, you may be correct that Iraq would not have invaded. The problem is, they weren't, so they did.
No doubt this explains why Israel's neighbors don't treat Israel as Iraq treated Kuwait.

Another counterpoint is that Saddam invaded Kuwait in large part because he needed Kuwait's oil revenue to pay the debts he incurred in waging war against nations like Iran. So that may be a partial example of a country who wages war because they are weak rather than because they are strong.


So in terms of limiting death, it would have been better if the Iraqi military was stronger?

Quote:

I don't believe this statement is accurate. Trying to avoid confrontation is not the same thing as saying "go ahead".I don't think it would have been good for America for Japan to conquer the Pacific, or for Germany to conquer Europe.Throughout the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s? That's pretty tired.

If you are suggesting that Israel should simply have surrendered in 1948 or 1967 or 1973, and that they would be better off if they had, I disagree.

If you can come up with an example of a country attacking another because the other is too strong, I would like to see it.

Regards,
Shodan

I don’t think I need to if the argument is about strong or weak militaries causing death. Not about whether it’s better to live under a strong or weak military. Though I must say a militarized culture has led to much social upheaval domestically that should not be discounted.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ravenman (Post 21420897)
Eh, he probably has argued at one time or another that the South had no choice but to fight.

Probably? Lol hell of a case there, bud.

Shodan 01-09-2019 02:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WillFarnaby (Post 21421131)
So in terms of limiting death, it would have been better if the Iraqi military was stronger?

No, just that your idea that weakness prevents war is not IMO well-founded.

It would have been better if Iraq hadn't invaded, or if Kuwait had been strong enough to defend herself and deter attack. But the strong attack the weak. The strong becoming weak doesn't change that - just creates another victim.

Regards,
Shodan

Alessan 01-09-2019 03:06 PM

Anyway, mifset, have you thought a bit about what people here had to say?


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