Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Terror panics and the war imperative

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  • Russell Brown,

    This story on The Guardian website today is also apposite: The Isis propaganda war: a hi-tech media jihad

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22743 posts Report Reply

  • Bevan Shortridge,

    This First Dog On The Moon cartoon from 24 September is likely worth a look too:
    Isis's letter to the west

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 122 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    Please someone make the point that sending troops endangers New Zealanders traveling overseas, it effectively devalues our passports and the security they provide.

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2605 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen R, in reply to Paul Campbell,

    Please someone make the point that sending troops endangers New Zealanders traveling overseas, it effectively devalues our passports and the security they provide.

    But think of the Trade treaty we might get if we do!

    Wellington • Since Jul 2009 • 259 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    yes just think of it .... still time to include it in Johnny's flag referendum

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2605 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    Please someone make the point that sending troops endangers New Zealanders traveling overseas, it effectively devalues our passports and the security they provide.

    I can't find that relevant. I'd struggle to find a war that I'd accept as a 'good one'. But if I did (I do support some peace-keeping, and can see a peace-keeping angle in this one) devaluing our passport is the least of our concerns. Sending soldiers overseas to fight wars should be good reason in itself or we shouldn't do it. Negatives like our passport, or positives like trade treaties, access to oil etc shouldn't have any part of it.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic,

    David Fisher:

    I don’t think that the state likes journalism very much. I think that journalism’s very awkward for the state, because it asks questions about what they’re doing … we have a great responsiblity to ask these important questions about what the state’s doing. Sometimes we don’t ask those as clearly as we should. Maybe they’ve forgotten what we’re there for in the first place – and that’s why they’re happy to go after us.

    So it prefers lapdog churnalists instead.

    Regarding ISIS, I have the sinking feeling it's going to be a long game of whack-a-mole. What happened in Oz with the suspected ISIS sympathiser has 'we will always be at war with Eastasia' written all over it.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5414 posts Report Reply

  • Ian Dalziel,

    The Great Game continues...
    First create or inflate a perceived problem,
    next devise or trigger an event or crisis,
    then implement the 'Draconian Solution'
    - which is what was wanted all along -
    We just have to be prepped to want it, first...

    Christchurch • Since Dec 2006 • 7881 posts Report Reply

  • Chris Waugh,

    Great show, but each of those three segments left me thinking, "That's all? Come on! More! Give me more of this!" Each segment could so easily have been spun out into a whole show on its own. Which I guess is a sign of the great work you're doing with Media Take.

    Wellington • Since Jan 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • Farmer Green,

    If you have the time this is a good read from the historical perspective.
    If you’re short of time , then pages 29-30 should bring you up to speed.

    It’s always good to know what the time is :-)

    http://www.mauldineconomics.com/ttmygh/pdf/the-consequences-of-the-economic-peace

    Lower North Island • Since Nov 2012 • 776 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    Negatives like our passport, or positives like trade treaties, access to oil etc shouldn't have any part of it.

    Well, they're like the wipings on the toilet paper, compared to the full dump. They're still little smears of shit I'd rather not have on me, but yes, totally, the main reason not to go turning up in some fucking unlimited military adventure in Arabia is because it is a rotten, evil, stupid thing to do. We did well not to be much involved in the first place, although we could have gone further officially and actually protested the stupidity of King Bush the Second. To join in now is something that we absolutely must hang on our government. Without their willingness, it would not be happening. It should not be happening.

    If we are to be involved as peacekeepers then it absolutely must be via the only legitimate channel, a UN sanctioned and controlled force.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10629 posts Report Reply

  • Farmer Green, in reply to BenWilson,

    a UN sanctioned and controlled force.

    Legitimate ? Really?

    Lower North Island • Since Nov 2012 • 776 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Farmer Green,

    Legitimate ? Really?

    It's as close as we can get.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10629 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Taylor,

    My inherent pacifism struggles in a situation like this. I have had the privilege of visiting Syria in somewhat more peaceful times (Israel was attacking Lebanon, just over the hills, rather vigorously at the time but life was peaceful in Syria itself). I came away with a great fondness for the country and its people (based on slight contact, admittedly). I felt very sad later at the Assad government's response to dissent and the destruction of people and culture that has followed. But at least the Assad regime and its various forms of opposition did not seem to have the megalomania of ISIL.

    Ambivalence about interfering in the politics of other nations/regions/cultures becomes hard to maintain when this kind of thing is going on.

    Arguing from the relatively remote safety of NZ against the international community cooperating in making every effort to stop ISIL seems to me to be isolationist and callously inconsiderate of the lives of ordinary people in the Middle East who are caught up in this obscenity. Especially when "the West" (which we greatly benefit from being part of) has provided much of the fuel for the fire (eg arms and ammunition ).

    Auckland • Since Jul 2012 • 24 posts Report Reply

  • Ken Double,

    National Governments will never quell their feelings of shame and resentment over the whole nuclear-free thing, so they feel an eternal obligation to follow America into whatever shit pit they're currently raining death on. I know I'm just a liberal but I'd feel better if Helen Clark was in the driver's seat right now. I don't trust Key's instincts on this one tiny bit.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2012 • 119 posts Report Reply

  • Grant Taylor, in reply to Ken Double,

    I have never trusted Key on anything, Ken – but I don’t think America is the issue here, ISIL is.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2012 • 24 posts Report Reply

  • Farmer Green,

    There are those who believe that “America” may well be the issue :-
    http://www.veteranstoday.com/2014/09/16/isil-another-bogeyman-created-by-us-analyst/

    It is difficult to know just who is pulling the strings here :-
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-10-07/joe-biden-apology-tour-hits-saudi-arabia

    Lower North Island • Since Nov 2012 • 776 posts Report Reply

  • Ken Double, in reply to Grant Taylor,

    You're right in everything you say Grant, but ISIL are like no other animal we've encountered. They want our disgust and they want our bombs because that's what brings recruits to their nasty sectarian crusade. All we can do is humanitarian work where we can and wait for the Sunnis in Iraq and Syria to reject their toxic parasite.

    Wellington • Since Dec 2012 • 119 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Kyle Matthews,

    I can’t find that relevant. I’d struggle to find a war that I’d accept as a ‘good one’. But if I did (I do support some peace-keeping, and can see a peace-keeping angle in this one) devaluing our passport is the least of our concerns.

    And, really, should we start telling journalists and aid workers -- you know the folks ISIL are cheerfully murdering -- they "endanger New Zealanders traveling overseas" and "devalue our passports" as well?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov, in reply to Ken Double,

    ISIL are like no other animal we’ve encountered

    I found the thematic coherence and comparisons made in Media Take quite strong actually.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming, in reply to Ken Double,

    ISIL are like no other animal we've encountered

    People say that every time, but it's never true. People worry about what they're doing, but they've still killed fewer people in the last year in that region than the US has.

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 2929 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to nzlemming,

    People worry about what they’re doing, but they’ve still killed fewer people in the last year in that region than the US has.

    Which is a little too damn easy for everyone to say sitting behind a keyboard on the other side of the planet, isn't it? One of the great things about Al-Jazeera is how it privileges voices for whom this isn't a high-tech version of Game of Thrrones.

    "It's not actually all about us (or the US)," is a point that should be made with more force.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to nzlemming,

    People say that every time, but it’s never true. People worry about what they’re doing, but they’ve still killed fewer people in the last year in that region than the US has.

    The US hasn't killed very many people in Syria and Iraq in the last year, although the body count will be rising quickly with Raqqa being bombed.

    Islamic's State's predecessor, Al Qaeda in Iraq, killed a hell of a lot of people, so indiscriminately that even the local Sunnis were prepared to drive them out. There are no easy answers -- beyond "don't invade Iraq in 2003".

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22743 posts Report Reply

  • mark taslov,

    Via your retweet Russell:

    John Key doesn’t think any action New Zealand takes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria will put Kiwis at risk of retaliation.

    However the Prime Minister says terrorists should never be able to prevent international retaliation.

    “You’re saying that the actions of terrorists will stop them standing up to those terrorists and I think that’s a dilution of responsibility that New Zealanders wouldn’t want to take.

    I want John Key to sidle up to God and prioritise the defence of New Zealand. Regardless of whether these risks actualise, to dispute their existence shows a reckless disregard for our safety. This ‘responsibility’ could be levelled at any number of international issues that we can more or less guarantee won’t be getting a look in.

    As denting as it may be to national ego, it’s time to stop kidding ourselves that the resources and numbers we could send in any capacity would be anything more than a drop in the ocean. Our measurable contribution would be our flag and the safety of those over whom it flies.

    Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The US hasn’t killed very many people in Syria and Iraq in the last year, although the body count will be rising quickly with Raqqa being bombed.

    Yeah - and I don't mean to harsh on nzlemming, but does anyone want to go to Kobane right now and split that hair? While we're doing a reality check on Western hypocrisy, it's useful to rethink how looking at people's suffering through a very long media telescope can dehumanize and shunt people to the margins of their own lives -- and deaths.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

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