Gigantic Misunderstandings

First of all, I'd like to say that we're in the calm before the potential storm. Stepping back from the low-level invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, I see the following. The Muslim world has attacked the Christian world. The Christian world is perplexed by this. So before striking back and annihilating all Muslims, being good scientists, they have held their punch, and remain holding their punch at the moment. The Muslims are blissfully unaware that they are in danger of complete annihilation, to eradicate the enemy ideology.

The Americans have been WONDERFUL scientists. Rather than turn Afghanistan into a glass desert, they chose instead to use the MINIMUM FORCE required to break open freedom of speech, so we could learn exactly what the driving forces behind them was. The US was criticized for pulling back from Fallujah the first time in April 2004. In fact, the US troops were furious at seemingly backing down to the enemy, especially when they were nearly defeated. But this served a purpose too. To find out exactly what sort of economy/state terrorists would create if they were given the freedom to do whatever they wanted. Fallujah was turned into a "Beyond Thunderdome" city, and sure enough, before long the citizens decided that they'd rather live in a normal city with normal law and order.

Most of the actions taken by America during the War on Terror have been experimental. Instead of just crushing the enemy as is traditional, the Americans have been running endless experiments. Toying with Al Sadr to see how much chaos Al Sistani would put up with before throwing his weight behind the "infidels". America has been excrutiatingly careful to pay utmost respect to Islam, because this is not the appropriate time for a war on Islam. First of all we need to analyze Arab/Muslim mentality to find out what it is about them that makes them behave differently from the West. They are humans and should be obeying normal human psychology. The objective is to provide a free environment (ie freedom of speech, especially anonymously via the internet) where they can say what they really think, so we can analyze the differences, before deciding what to do about the enemy ideology. The Americans have been careful not to respond to insults from the entire world. It is not comfortable being so hated, but now is not the time to react to that hatred. Now is the time to analyze why that hatred exists. And we don't want to know the opinions of dictators, we want to know the opinions of the people.

Also, there are things we don't understand about ourselves. E.g. what determines who joins the coalition in Afghanistan and Iraq? What creates an affinity between the various member countries? I believe I have the answer to that already - we are mostly countries that are against subjugation, and we are tribal on anti-subjugation. But it was interesting to see the terrorists in Iraq blowing up a Christian church, trying to provoke a reaction from America. The terrorists are tribal on Islam, and they are expecting us to be tribal on Christianity. But in the west, religion is just an individual choice, not membership of a tribe. And they don't understand that we fight wars according to science, and that blowing up a church is the equivalent of blowing up a tree - not militarily significant.

I spend a lot of my time talking and debating with people, to try to tease out the fundamental misunderstandings. E.g. the Russians and the Chinese can sense (correctly) that we consider them as enemies still. Or if not enemies, at least outcasts. They don't know why, and we don't know why either, so we can't tell them what we're looking for from them. When pressed, we tell China we want a democracy. But the Chinese correctly realise that democracy will be a disaster at the moment, as much of the population is still rural and uneducated. The West did not have instant democracy. In America, it started with white male landowners only. The Chinese correctly realise that they need to complete their economic reforms so that people can see them in action, so that they won't vote for traditional communism. And the reason we don't trust Russia is because subconciously we can see that Russia is subjugating others (Georgia and Moldova), and our primal instincts are treating this as an entity to be wary of. But the Russians can only see that "America" is advancing towards its borders, as a hostile anti-Russian entity. This is invoking primal survival instincts in them too. Because they see themselves in the tribe of Russians, and don't see that they have anything in common with the West. And they are correct. Unless Russia becomes an anti-subjugator or non-subjugator, they will not be able to ally with NATO (a collection of anti-subjugators and non-subjugators).

In this calm before the storm, we need to reach out to the rest of the world and try to frankly explain to them where the misunderstandings are and what can be done to solve them. E.g. I was talking to a Chinese, who was proud of how powerful China was, as shown by the Olympic medal tally. I explained how boasting about the power of a dictatorship simply scares the hell out of me, and makes me want to form an alliance with the rest of the free world to ensure that China's power is countered. This is a natural reaction. A lot of people seem to think that Australia only joins with the rest of the free world because of American pressure. They can't get their head around the fact that free countries NATURALLY coalesce. If the Chinese government can subjugate the Chinese people, then they can subjugate others too. There is primal distrust due to this.

And here's another misunderstanding that I found out about today, that prompted this blog. Capitalism is not working properly in the third world, and the third world thinks that it is some western plot to keep them down, or that the west is only rich due to exploitation of them. But people in the west know that they are doing no such thing. But we don't know what is going wrong. We inherited our systems from our parents and it just "works". The author explains that the third world is missing the system of property rights that enables individuals to get capital (using their house as collateral) to start businesses.

We need to do more frank analysis of the problems with the rest of the world so that we can help them to address them before there are more misunderstandings that lead to unnecessary conflicts. Another problem is racism. In the west we assume that everyone is non-racist, since that's how we were brought up. But that is far from the case, be it Asia or the Middle East. Most of these countries are a distinct race, and so the distinction of "nation" and "race" is more blurred. They assume that we are as racist as them, and the endless stream of left-wing propaganda from our own countries seems to confirm that. Basically WASPs (White Anglo-Saxon Protestants) are made out to be the most racist people in the world, when the opposite is true.

We should be prepared to go to war to wipe out the enemy ideology, but we owe it to humanity to frankly explain to the adherents of the enemy ideologies why we see their ideology (be it racism or religious bigotry or dictatorship) as a threat to ourselves. Otherwise we will end up wiping them out without them even knowing what they needed to change in their behaviour to get off the "enemy list". This is what I am trying to do - document the fundamental point of conflict.

Our governments themselves have less latitude in being able to bluntly tell the enemies why they are enemies, because there is the potential for all the enemies to form a hostile alliance. It makes more sense if our governments bite their tongues and just take on one enemy at a time. But the public needs to be made aware of the "potential grand plan" so that it will continue to vote for the pro-war camp who are taking out the enemies one at a time. Fortunately the pro-war camp in both Australia and the US won by a whisker. But it would be good to get the Europeans on board so that it is not necessary to be so dependent on America.

I was talking to an Egyptian on IRC today, and he explained how he distrusted the US and the UK (not surprising given all the propaganda levelled at these two countries), but on the possibility of Australia leading a coalition to free Iran, he said "At least I know and all will know that there is no hidden benefit beyond liberation". I think it makes sense at this point in history to make use of the fact that there are many free countries in the world besides the US and the UK. Although I trust both of these countries as forces of freedom, if others don't, and there's no harm in using a different combination of forces, it makes sense as a tactic to present a different pattern of liberators. This is what was done with the ISAF (International Security Assistance Force) in Afghanistan - there was no Americans in the force, which takes away the enemy's ability to talk of a US invasion. I think this was an excellent move!

I think ultimately we need to move to a US-less coalition of liberators, or at least, only use the US for air power. This is also good for the US, which hates having to deploy ground troops. I think this is the future. An ISAF-like coalition of liberators. I believe with the complete air supremacy enjoyed by the free world, that we can invent a new military doctrine, similar to that in Afghanistan, where we liberate one "enemy" base at a time, and keep anyone willing to defect on board, and send the rest home, until the whole country is governed by the defectors who have freedom as their highest loyalty.

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