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Subject: why can't the US handle Charles Taylor ?
jean    7/29/2003 8:44:12 AM
Why no US intervention ? No oil or richness ? bad african souvenir ( somalia )? not enough troops ? no money ? else ?
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American Kafir    RE:why can't the US handle Charles Taylor ?   7/29/2003 9:15:47 AM
Maybe it's because if the United States wanted to REALLY solve the problems in Africa, we'd have to evoke regime change in France. We're already getting criticism for attacking Iraq, imagine what would happen if we invaded the defenseless French to make them stop propping up African dictators?
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FJV    RE:why can't the US handle Charles Taylor ?   7/29/2003 1:29:02 PM
Maybe it is because the USA remember another French "souvenir" called Vietnam. Also Liberia is not key to winning the war on terror. It is also not of prime strategic importance to the USA. Also the primary function of the USA government is to serve the interests of the US citizens (that includes soldiers). Having your life risked in a needless war is not in the citizens interest. So the US government has to be as sure as possible that the benefits of military intervention in Liberia to US citizens outweigh the risk US soldiers/citizens will take.
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JCH    RE:why can't the US handle Charles Taylor ?   7/30/2003 3:08:00 AM
"Maybe it is because the USA remember another French "souvenir" called Vietnam." Funny you said that... I guess France could have received more helped in 49-54 when their colonialist war could have been handled : The Vietminh didn't have the support of a proper state, and the borders with Communist China could have been locked... Things that the Americans weren't able to do with more military means, when North Vietnam was INVADING South Vietnam... VN was not a counterinsurgency war... or shouldn't have been fought like one after the French Defeat in Dien Bien Phu.
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FJV    RE:JCH   7/30/2003 10:53:29 AM
OK you have a point. However the British actually won two counterinsurgency wars (Malaya and Jemem I think). If the British can win without help then I'm sure the French could. I think the difference was that the British promised/gave independance to the people whereas the French were trying to hold on to their colony and gave the people a reason to fight. One of the American mistakes may have been in propping up a "pro USA" dictator instead of promising/giving the Vietnamese independance.
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SGTObvious    RE:why can't the US handle Charles Taylor ?   7/30/2003 11:02:52 AM
"Why no US intervention ?" Your call is important to us, please hold. All available military forces are securing other nations, and your call will be answered in the order in which it was received. When the operator comes on the line, please have your United Nations authorization for use of excessive force ready, as well as a copy of your agreement to withdraw all claims of ICC jurisduction over American soldiers. If your call involves Terrorism, press 1 for our Emergency Operator now. If you wish France and Germany to resolve your problem, please hang up and call again after reality has sunk in.
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JCH    RE:FJV...   7/31/2003 5:04:17 AM
Actually thta is not true... The French tried to implement something a bit like the Commonwealth, which was called l'Union Française, and Indochina was supposed to be part of it... It is also my belief that America got reluctant in supporting the French in Vietnam not knowing which was worse : colonialism ( in a way ) or communism... Well they found out...
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FJV    RE:FJV...   7/31/2003 1:20:57 PM
I will look it up. It seems strange however that France would need force just to get them to join some common wealth thing. So much has been written about the US in Vietnam that the French experience is overshadowed. To get back to the topic. The other points about Liberia still stand. The US govt. has to weight whether intervention in Liberia serves their citizens (which includes soldiers) best interests.
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Shaka of Carthage    RE: the reasons   7/31/2003 4:04:36 PM
Despite what some people on this board believe, nations don't act unless it is in thier own self-interest. Its easy, when that self-interest is evident, as in national security. Its a problem, when there is no national security risk. Liberia has no US national interests at stake. Some have tried to use the "destabilizing" of the region as a breeding ground for future terrorism as a risk to the US. For those that still believe the US intervenes because it is trying to right the "evil" in the world, if Liberia and North Korea haven't shown you thats wrong, there's not much else that will. So any Liberian intervention would be because of the humanitarian position, which by itself, is not a good enough reason to intervene. But then the political stakes come into play and it gets much more complicated. Intervening for humanitarian reasons has alot of political clout for the upcoming presidental elections. The drawback is the possibility it would turn into Somalia (another "humanitarian intervention" that turned out wrong). Then there is the political football over Charles Taylor, the "war criminal". Especially what it means in realtionship to the International Criminal Court that the US won't agree to. There is also the UN aspect. If the US wants to improve its relationship with the UN, then intervene. Then again, maybe the US wants the UN to be something other than what it is today. Then the intervention would be bad. And we musn't forget AIDs. one of the unspoken fears, is that US troops will get infected by HIV. That would be a political nightmare for Bush. This would also bring out the racial prejudices as well. Should the US intervene? Yes. But it should also explain that for the intervention to be meaniful, its requires "nation building". Percentage wise, nothing like Iraq. But certainly the same percentage as Afghanistan. Of course, that implies we want to do the "right" thing. Its never about right or wrong, its about politics.
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American Kafir    RE: the reasons   7/31/2003 6:47:04 PM
If it's a UN fight, the US has a stake in providing a counter-balance to the neo-colonism of North Algeria, er, France, in Africa. Otherwise it's a French problem, as always seeking an American solution.
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jean    RE: the reasons AK   8/1/2003 9:04:14 AM
Why do you want Liberia to be a french problem ? we give a damn about Ivory coast for it's a former colony. The brits do the same for sierra leone. liberia was founded by former US's your job , buddy.
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