War of the Worlds

My mother told me that she was sponsoring a child in Uganda. While doing that is obstensibly noble, in my opinion it is best to channel the money into newly-liberated countries instead. This will create the most bang per buck, as it gives a capitalist country a chance to prosper and become self-sufficient. It also means that the people will associate American intervention with increased prosperity so that more people will applaud the US dropping bombs on their country.

Basically even as a child I recognized we were in a war - between the Free World and the Non-Free World. Donating money to Uganda has NO MILITARY EFFECT and thus putting money into that is like pouring water into sand. It is best for the limited resources to be spent helping a country which already has the foundations (such as capitalism) laid, so that the resources are not squandered. Most importantly, this form of aid comes with an associated MILITARY EFFECT, such that it helps secure a new member of the Free World who will hopefully join NATO eventually too.




Sydney Riots

I wasn't going to comment on the Sydney Riots, because they don't have any strategic relevance. But a couple of people have asked me to comment, given that I live in Sydney myself. I get my news from the BBC and Fox News so I don't know any more about it than anyone else. What I would say is that it is very rare to have such an occurrence in Australia. I can't think of any other time where large numbers of Australians have gone on a rampage. And beating up innocent people is very un-Australian. Australians normally have a combination of apathy and tolerance that keep them away from racial violence.

I assume the rioting whites are pissed off at Muslims for attacking Australia. But as far as I am concerned, that issue is already being addressed. We are fighting the bad Muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq already. The rioters should concentrate on the Labor Party in Australia who are opposed to the war in Iraq. I bet most of the rioters are Labor supporters. They probably feel that Muslims are not integrating themselves into Australia. There are Lebanese gangs in Sydney - but not in the north of Sydney which is where I live. There have been some famous gang-rapes perpetuated by the Lebanese, including one notable perpetrator who said "I'm from Lebanon - I didn't know rape was illegal".

It is the police's job to take care of bad Muslims in Australia, not rioting whites. And if they don't like Australia's immigration policy they should vote for Pauline Hanson's "One Nation" party if it still exists. Regardless, they are outvoted. I personally don't like the fact that we have foreigners coming here who refuse to integrate into mainstream Australian society. There's nothing wrong with mainstream Australia. There's no reason to form ethnic blocs. The riots remind me of the movie "Romper Stomper". It is one of the best Australian films ever made. Watch it if you haven't already seen it!




Believable Numbers

Here is an excerpt from www.strategypage.com:

"December 11, 2005: American fatalities in Iraq, so far, amount to 2,400 coalition dead (89 percent American), about 12,000 Iraqi soldiers and police killed (half defending Saddam in early 2003, the rest defending the new Iraqi government), and about 28,000 civilians. The civilian figure includes anti-government forces. In fact, at least half the “civilian” dead are terrorists and anti-government gunmen. We know that because over 80 percent of the dead civilians are adult males (which normally account for only about a quarter of the population.) However, adult males comprise over 99 percent of the terrorist and anti-government gunmen population."

So that's 40,000 Iraqis killed out of a population of 27 million. That's 0.15% of the population. Since I consider the ending of institutionalized rape to be something that should be fought to the last man, this is an extremely small price to be paid for freedom. And let's not forget that most of those killed were enemy combatants. The figures should be even better for the next country liberated, as there will be no security vacuum.




Installing Democracy by Force of Arms

Good news just out from Afghanistan. 87% of the people think it was good to oust the Taliban vs 9% who think it was a bad thing. With numbers like that, Afghanistan is in the bag. :-) The new parliament is due to sit on the 19th December, 2005. So much for the theory that democracy can't be installed by force of arms. :-)

The numbers in Iraq aren't so good with 48% saying it was right to invade vs 39% who don't. But regardless, when the Iraqis go to the polls in less than a week, we're going to see the second example of a country having democracy installed by force of arms.

That leaves something like 40 countries who need "encouragement" to democratize.




Electoral Reform

I think that democracy is falling short in countries that don't have "preferential voting" of the sort that Australia has. Preferential voting allows you to vote for a minor party, but when that minor party gets nowhere as expected, instead of your vote being wasted, the next preference is taken. E.g. in the 2004 US presidential elections, there would be 3 boxes, and a far left person could put number 1 for Ralph Nader, number 2 for the Democrats and number 3 for the Republicans. When the votes are counted and the Republicans failed to reach 50% of the total vote, the lowest party (Nader) is eliminated from the race and the second preference (in this case, for the Democrats) is chosen. So just because the Republicans got more "1" votes than the Democrats, doesn't mean that they will win. It depends on how the preferences from Nader get distributed. If they overwhelmingly go to the Democrats, then the Democrats will get elected. There is no need for runoff elections either.

You could see this problem in action with the French presidential elections where the runoff was between two right-wing parties, because the left-wing vote had been split. I think that countries that don't have preferential voting, which is most of them, need to have election reform. Although in the short term, I was relieved that Nader managed to split the left-wing vote by enough to get Bush over the line. Bush's reelection was key to ensuring that the War on Terror is won.




Proving Technology

The US is on a path of transforming the military. In order to do so, it needs to prove the alternate technology. The main thing to note is that if you're not trying to ram a particular ideology down the throats of people, you don't need to be able to do a war of conquest. You just need to do a war of liberation. So here is what has been proven so far and what remains to be proven:

Afghanistan - if there is a civil war, it is possible to merely provide air support to the weaker side and have them romp to victory.

Iraq - it is possible to use a light force to defeat the fielded forces and then allow the recruiting of a new security force.

Syria - it is possible to defeat the fielded forces and then REUSE the old military - just make them swear allegiance to new leaders.

Iran - it is possible to call on defections from the military plus get the people to rise up at a particular date and time such that air support plus special forces are the only force that is required.

If we can prove all this technology we will be well on the way to creating the military of the future.


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