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War is peace

If a teacher intervenes in a school playground fight, it is not normally so as to punch one of the children in the face.

  1. 1  shadowfirebird  March 25, 2011, 9:56 am 

    I think “intervene” just means “place yourself between”. What happens afterwards is unspoken.

    So, not entirely sure this is unspeak.

  2. 2  Stephen Paulger  March 25, 2011, 11:38 am 

    I have never heard of a school playground fight where the two fighters were equipped as differently as the people who just-so-happen-to-be fighting on the side of Gadaffi (you oppose the use of “pro-Gadaffi”) and the people the people who are getting shot just because they’ve had the audacity to leave their house, report on events or were in the wrong place at the wrong time.

    In a school a teacher is obligated to intervene in fights and if one or more of the children started fighting them they would have the right to defend themselves. So it seems to me that your analogy is ridiculous unless you’re assuming that we’re obliged to intervene.

    I don’t see how we can stand by while forces who just-so-happen-to-be fighting on the side of Gadaffi are killing and injuring people on the scale that they are and I don’t see how we can stop that without the use of force because threatening them with an after-school detention isn’t going to work.

    I have friends in Libya at the moment, on the balance I think the forces who just-so-happen-to-be fighting for Gadaffi offer a greater threat to them than the western use of force.

    Having said that, I wish the American helicopters wouldn’t strafe civilians when they’re rescuing pilots who’ve crashed in Libya.

  3. 3  Aaron  March 25, 2011, 3:43 pm 

    One can be against the intervention for all sorts of principled reasons. But using simple analogies to make an deeply complicated and ambiguous situation seem easy and simple is not the way to get there. Comparing what is happening in Libya to a schoolyard brawl is a mystification, a substitute for actual analysis and thought.

  4. 4  john c. halasz  March 25, 2011, 8:20 pm 

    “In any case, this it not even a war, but merely a “kinetic military action,” according to an Obama aide.”

  5. 5  Steven  March 25, 2011, 10:44 pm 


    Comparing what is happening in Libya to a schoolyard brawl

    I hope no one around here is doing that. I certainly wasn’t.

  6. 6  democracy_grenade  March 26, 2011, 5:08 pm 

    If this is an “intervention” in the strapping-yr-junkie-mate-to-his-bed sense, then maybe “pro-Gaddafi-foces” should be re-christened “Enablers”. That nicely brackets out the vexed question of motivation.

  7. 7  JimBirch  March 27, 2011, 3:35 am 

    Sadly, there’s nothing like a war to bump up the Unspeak post rate. :\

  8. 8  weaver  March 30, 2011, 3:07 am 

    The problem with the use of “intervention” here is the same as for the Kosovo fiasco: NATO prefers the air war approach because their governments are appalled by the prospect of an actual intervention in the sense of a troop presence. But then, “humanitarian bombardment” doesn’t have quite the same ring to it.

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