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This room is for the discussion of current events,cultural issues and politics especially in relation to Catholic values.

Saint Thomas More was martyred during the Protestant Reformation for standing firm in the Faith and not recognizing the King of England as the Supreme Head of the Church.
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May 19th 2013 new
(quote) Rebecca-654746 said: ... ...Right now what I'm seeing is very Pie n the sky with these rebel groups. The Iranian revolution after all you had all kinds of groups from secularists to everyone uniting against the Shah. But then what happened when the vacuum came.
The Iranian revolution came about because we did exactly what you appear to be advocating now; we supported an unpopular regime because he did things we wanted him to do.

I'm not sure what your point is about a just war here is. To an extent, the point is moot; the war is happening right now whether we like it or not. We have no ability to simply decide whether or not it continues. Our only option along those lines would be to come in on one side or the other and force a conclusion.

Which brings us back to the Iranian thing. The rebellion is ongoing and has an excellent chance of success. Were we to come in and rescue Assad, we would be repeating our mistakes in Iran, except we'd be even dumber; at least the Shah was a good ally. Assad is nothing of the sort.

It is morally repugnant to support Assad, and politically suicidal as well.

And I don't know why you keep on talking about "right" in Syria. It's a brutal dictatorship where the government does what it wants and kills who it wants. People don't have a "right" to religion there, the government simply doesn't see any profit from oppressing people on that particular point. So while it's true that non-Muslims are not harassed by the government because of their religion, that is hardly because of any enlightened approach by the Baathists.
May 19th 2013 new
(quote) Rebecca-654746 said: How is our getting involved prevented Christians from being slaughtered. Last I checked our "getting involved" in Iraq led to the half of the Christians in Iraq fleeing for their lives. ... Assad is not exactly Israel's friend and has yes funded Hezbollah, but do you really think an Islamic fundamentalist regime is going to be better. .... Under Assad, Syria and Israel avoided all out war. .... And please tell that us getting involved might very well lead to that happening. And who do you think these guys will go to war with-when it happens. Either war with the Shiia or war with Israel. Perhaps when one war is done war with the other. Just because Assad isn't Israel's friend- doesn't mean that who comes into power next will be. Nobody whose democratically elected in the Middle East is going to be Israel's friend-for a very long time. ... At least under Assad all Syrians had rights to live in Syria as citizens, you can't determine that will happen if Assad leaves.
Just as an aside, you should probably use more white space. Monolithic blocks like this make it harder to follow your thoughts.

"Getting involved" covers a lot of ground and specific results would be dependent on the level of involvement. It could range from trivial to complete control of the country.

Your talk about Assad not being Israel's friend completely and totally misses the point. The point, which you seem very keen to avoid even though it has been brought up numerous times, is that Assad (and Iran) are actively preventing a permanent peace between Israel and the Palestinians. They want perpetual hostilities. It lets them have a scapegoat. This cannot be dismissed as a mere question of "not being friends." By refusing to solve address this problem, one refuses to address the fundamental problem of peace in the middle east.

The lack of an all out war between Syria and Israel has nothing to do with Assad's wise governance and everything to do with Israel's nuclear arsenal.

You seem to be under the impression that all of the rebel groups are the same. What evidence do you poses that demonstrates each and every single rebel group is a religious extremist group and that there does not exist anybody among the rebels who would be willing to have a more tolerant government?

Again, your depiction of rights existing in the Syrian dictatorship seems to confuse policy with principle.
May 19th 2013 new
There are a lot of people who are thankful to Pinochet for putting the country on the course to prosperity. You, however, are running a red herring by us. Other U.S. interventions in Latin America didn't end so well for the people involved, such as in Guatemala where the CIA aided in the overthrow of a democratically elected leader for the benefit of the United Fruit Company (now Chiquita Brands), and resulted in the country fighting a decades long civil war.

en.wikipedia.org

With that background aside, why are any of the rebel groups preferable to Assad, who, while a thug at least kept the country in peace for a decade and protected the Christians in that area? The place was a refuge to Christians from Iraq when they were terrorized by Islamists after we "liberated" them from Saddam Hussein.

What is the strategic consideration that makes the extirpation of the Catholic and Orthodox Church from the Middle East necessary to achieve? What is the victory so important to this nation and to the world that even the Church and its safety need to be set aside, if there is one?

May 19th 2013 new
How exactly can you compare the United States government not funding the rebels to the United States government participating in an overthrow of an elected government i.e Allende vs Pinochet. I'm not saying that we should back Assad, or give him arms. I don't support that. If the Syrian people want to overthrow them and they are successful fine. Its for Syria to decide on this. What I'm saying is that we shouldn't arm the rebels. The United States has anger in Latin America and parts of the Middle East because we actually financially, militarily and sometimes imposed those dictatorships on them. There are plenty of dictatorships and civil wars all around the world that the United States doesn't get involved in. As for Syria being the "primary" reason the Palestianians and the Israelis don't have peace. I really must say really...Heh. The Syrians and the Arabs all offered Israel peace if Israel would agree to go back to borders (1967) Israel didn't even acknowledge. I won't say that Syria is helpful to the peace process. They aren't. But even if Syria gets the most friendly government in the world to Israel- I can 100% guarantee you right now the peace process will remain stalled. And why because of the Settlement movement in Israel, and the growing extremism that occupation is causing amongst the Palestinians... Our financially supporting Saudi Arabia, which is a brutal dictatorship where we give weapons to that makes it impossible for the people to overthrow-that's more Latin American like. Than us not taking sides in Syria.
May 19th 2013 new
In fact Romero's big statement to the US was stop arming the government. Notice it wasn't give the "Rebels" arms it was stop arming the government. I'm saying we shouldn't be arming-either side.
May 19th 2013 new
In fact the biggest obstacle for the Peace Process is the extremists in Israel who are convinced all of the land belongs to them, and unwillingness to share it with the Arabs who were living there. And then their frankly "brothers" on the Arab side who are convinced once Muslim a land must always be Muslim. In Israel is growing a huge number of these zealots. Remember what happened to Rabin. In reality these folks truly worship the same god. Just as the Protestants/Irish were killing each other in the name of religion worshipped the same god... For the record if the people in the Middle East want a fundamentalist government-it in the end their choice. I don't support the funding of the Muburaks. But I don't think we should arm the other extremists either whose motives aren't friendly either. There's a difference between arming a dictatorship and not arming one. The situation in Israel is a sad situation and in reality we should be telling the Israelis that they can't continue with the settlements and what they are doing.. But sadly our government is fueling that fight for generations to come. Specifically because we are taking sides.
May 19th 2013 new
For the record nothing wrong with a Jewish state any more than a French one. But when your decision to have an ethnic/religious state involves denying rights to a good amount of people around you. It becomes a problem. In Israel proper Arabs have citizenship but they don't want to extend it to the Palestinians. Because of the fear that the Arabs may then soon out number them. As Christians we should be calling all sides to peace. A two state solution is the only option here. But sadly settlements are slowly making it impossible.
May 20th 2013 new
(quote) Steven-706921 said: There are a lot of people who are thankful to Pinochet for putting the country on the course to prosperity. You, however, are running a red herring by us. Other U.S. interventions in Latin America didn't end so well for the people involved, such as in Guatemala where the CIA aided in the overthrow of a democratically elected leader for the benefit of the United Fruit Company (now Chiquita Brands), and resulted in the country fighting a decades long civil war.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_PBSUCCESS

With that background aside, why are any of the rebel groups preferable to Assad, who, while a thug at least kept the country in peace for a decade and protected the Christians in that area? The place was a refuge to Christians from Iraq when they were terrorized by Islamists after we "liberated" them from Saddam Hussein.

What is the strategic consideration that makes the extirpation of the Catholic and Orthodox Church from the Middle East necessary to achieve? What is the victory so important to this nation and to the world that even the Church and its safety need to be set aside, if there is one?

So what if there are those who think Pinochet put the country on track for economic prosperity. Mussolini made the trains run on time and Hitler solved unemployment. Who cares? It doesn't alter my point.

Likewise your example of the United Fruit Company in no way undermines my point. The Guatemalans got saddled with a government they didn't like. That is the problem. If we had overthrown a government they hated, they would have been fine (assuming the replacement was one they did like). The hatred or lack there of is dependent on whether the action in question benefits or hurts the population. It is not the case that the population automatically dislikes it when the government gets overthrown. They will dislike it if the government was popular or the replacement is bad. Otherwise it's not an issue.

Assad has not kept the country in peace. Dictatorships never do. Just because they weren't engaged in open warfare doesn't mean there was peace.

If your only strategic concern is the protection of Christian populations, why not just launch a crusade and be done with it?

If you think Assad wasn't so bad, explain to me how you think there is EVER going to be a lasting peace in the middle east while Syria and Iran maintain their policy of stirring up trouble between the Israelis and Arabs?
May 20th 2013 new
(quote) Rebecca-654746 said: How exactly can you compare the United States government not funding the rebels to the United States government participating in an overthrow of an elected government i.e Allende vs Pinochet. I'm not saying that we should back Assad, or give him arms. I don't support that. If the Syrian people want to overthrow them and they are successful fine. Its for Syria to decide on this.
I'm not comparing the US not funding the rebels to its Cold War actions in Latin America. I'm comparing it to supporting Assad.

Until this post, you have consistently made a point of repeatedly saying that "Assad might be bad, but at least he's letting people practice their religion." (my summary of your position, not necessarily your actual words.) This has been leading me to conclude that you think we should back Assad.


May 20th 2013 new
(quote) Rebecca-654746 said: ... As for Syria being the "primary" reason the Palestianians and the Israelis don't have peace. I really must say really...Heh. The Syrians and the Arabs all offered Israel peace if Israel would agree to go back to borders (1967) Israel didn't even acknowledge. I won't say that Syria is helpful to the peace process. They aren't. But even if Syria gets the most friendly government in the world to Israel- I can 100% guarantee you right now the peace process will remain stalled. And why because of the Settlement movement in Israel, and the growing extremism that occupation is causing amongst the Palestinians... ...
Okay, your understanding of what is going on in the middle east is badly over-simplified.

Egypt and Israel already have a formal peace treaty.

Jordan has renounced claims to the West Bank (which, incidentally, wasn't even its to begin with). This renunciation has a number of reasons, not least of which is the fact that the Arab populations in Israel are but pawns for their neighbors. The Jordanians do not actually want the "Palestinians" in their population.

In Jordan's defense, the Palestinians have quite a history of destabilizing whatever nation is hosting them. Lebanon used to be a peaceful neutral ground until they let them in. Jordan had their fair share of trouble with them as well.

The only international territorial dispute is the Golan Heights between Israel and Syria. And that is a major reason why Syria makes sure the PLO or Hezbollah or whoever else wants to lob rockets into civilian targets in Israel gets them.

You neglect to mention that Iran and Syria always reach out to extremist groups in the Palestinian population whenever it looks like the peace process might actually go somewhere and give them weapons to go blow something up and derail the talks.

Yes it's certainly true that Israel has made its fair share of moves that have angered the Arabs in the country. Not only the settlements, but other economic political issues as well.

But to simplify it all down to the settlements is just plain silly.
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