Discussion:
What if: No American support for Afghan Rebels following Soviet Invasion?
(too old to reply)
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-07 17:10:29 UTC
Permalink
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1.  The future of the Soviet Union.
2.  The future of Eastern Europe.
3.  The future of Afghanistan
4.  The future of Islamic Extremism.
5.  The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism.  And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case.  Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.  And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's?  Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
government not supporting the Rebels in Afghanistan, in the 1980's:

Specifically on,

1. The future of the Soviet Union.

2. The future of Eastern Europe.

3. The future of Afghanistan
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-07 17:13:44 UTC
Permalink
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
government not supporting the Rebels in Afghanistan, in the 1980's:

Specifically on,

1. The future of the Soviet Union.

2. The future of Eastern Europe.

3. The future of Afghanistan

4. The future of Islamic Extremism.

5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.

Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.

One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".

As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-07 18:30:39 UTC
Permalink
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-07 18:37:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
 Specifically on,
1.  The future of the Soviet Union.
2.  The future of Eastern Europe.
3.  The future of Afghanistan
4.  The future of Islamic Extremism.
5.  The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism.  And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case.  Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.  And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's?  Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Uh...are you saying that the Afghan rebels were getting enough Stinger
missles to down a Soviet aircraft or helicopter every day in the late
eighties, just through one rogue CIA operative???
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-07 18:46:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Jack Linthicum
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Uh...are you saying that the Afghan rebels were getting enough Stinger
missles to down a Soviet aircraft or helicopter every day in the late
eighties, just through one rogue CIA operative???
Who else? No one was responsible for them until he was replaced so he
must have been the sole source. Read Charley Wilson's War, better than
the movie because it can say more.
William Black
2008-03-07 19:20:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Jack Linthicum
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.-
Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Uh...are you saying that the Afghan rebels were getting enough Stinger
missles to down a Soviet aircraft or helicopter every day in the late
eighties, just through one rogue CIA operative???
Who else? No one was responsible for them until he was replaced so he
must have been the sole source. Read Charley Wilson's War, better than
the movie because it can say more.
And I still have that bridge for sale...
--
William Black


I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
Barbeques on fire by the chalets past the castle headland
I watched the gift shops glitter in the darkness off the Newborough gate
All these moments will be lost in time, like icecream on the beach
Time for tea.
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-07 19:25:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by William Black
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Jack Linthicum
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.-
Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Uh...are you saying that the Afghan rebels were getting enough Stinger
missles to down a Soviet aircraft or helicopter every day in the late
eighties, just through one rogue CIA operative???
Who else? No one was responsible for them until he was replaced so he
must have been the sole source. Read Charley Wilson's War, better than
the movie because it can say more.
And I still have that bridge for sale...
--
William Black
I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
Barbeques on fire by the chalets past the castle headland
I watched the gift shops glitter in the darkness off the Newborough gate
All these moments will be lost in time, like icecream on the beach
Time for tea.
Try these guys, they seem to ask the wrong questions.

If they ask the wrong questions, you don't have to worry about the
answers.--Thomas Pynchon
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-07 20:07:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by William Black
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Jack Linthicum
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.-
Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Uh...are you saying that the Afghan rebels were getting enough Stinger
missles to down a Soviet aircraft or helicopter every day in the late
eighties, just through one rogue CIA operative???
Who else? No one was responsible for them until he was replaced so he
must have been the sole source. Read Charley Wilson's War, better than
the movie because it can say more.
And I still have that bridge for sale...
--
William Black
I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
Barbeques on fire by the chalets past the castle headland
I watched the gift shops glitter in the darkness off the Newborough gate
All these moments will be lost in time,  like icecream on the beach
Time for tea.
Try these guys, they seem to ask the wrong questions.
If they  ask the wrong questions, you don't have to worry about the
answers.--Thomas Pynchon- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
You know, this brings up a rather interesting question. The United
States government obviously provided enormous and critical support to
the Afghan Rebels against the Soviets through intermediaries, but they
deny having done it because they did it through intermediaries. And
Osama Bin Laden denies it, again because the contact was indirect.
Any chance they're still doing it?!?
Sid9
2008-03-07 22:49:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.

Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-07 23:30:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sid9
Post by Jack Linthicum
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.
Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.
Yes, Mr. Wilson is taking a lot of heat from those who didn't
appreciate his efforts,
"Despite the victory, Avrakotos warns that unless there is a serious
effort to help Afghanistan rebuild back into a stable society, there
could be dire and unpredictable repercussions for both that nation and
the U.S. In the film, Avrakotos issues the warning to Wilson as a
subtle sound of an airplane flies over Wilson's Washington, D.C. high
rise, likely implying a probable connection between the inaction and
the September 11, 2001 attacks, though no definitive statement on this
is made until the film's conclusion, which includes a statement by
Wilson that the Afghan "end-game" war was mishandled.

Wilson follows Avrakotos' guidance to seek support for post-Soviet
occupation Afghanistan, but finds almost no enthusiasm in the U.S.
government for even the modest measures he proposes. The film ends
with Wilson receiving a major commendation for the support of the U.S.
clandestine services, but his pride is tempered by his fears of what
unintended consequences his secret efforts could yield in the future
and the implications of U.S. disengagement from Afghanistan."

The Ivy League upper management of the CIA wants the medals and the
promotions that they get by bouncing Avrakoto off to another dead end
assignment but they either don't have the traction or the desire to
make a low level trumph into a real effort to rebuild Afghanistan. So
we forget Afghanistan for the 20 years or so until al Qaeda flies
airplanes into buildings. Then forget Afghanistan for a less obvious
goal in Iraq. Oil.
Rich Rostrom
2008-03-08 04:31:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sid9
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.
Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.
The U.S. never provided _any_ support
for the Taliban...

because the Taliban did not exist until
1994, five years after the Soviet forces
withdrew. U.S. aid to the mujahideen
ceased at that time.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
Sid9
2008-03-08 14:08:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by Rich Rostrom
Post by Sid9
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.
Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.
The U.S. never provided _any_ support
for the Taliban...
because the Taliban did not exist until
1994, five years after the Soviet forces
withdrew. U.S. aid to the mujahideen
ceased at that time.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
Mujahadeen, Taliban.....same people new name
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-08 14:11:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sid9
Post by Rich Rostrom
Post by Sid9
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.
Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.
The U.S. never provided _any_ support
for the Taliban...
because the Taliban did not exist until
1994, five years after the Soviet forces
withdrew. U.S. aid to the mujahideen
ceased at that time.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
Mujahadeen, Taliban.....same people new name
Not really that's like saying the Confederate Army became the Baptist
Church
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-08 20:11:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by Sid9
Post by Rich Rostrom
Post by Sid9
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.
Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.
The U.S. never provided _any_ support
for the Taliban...
because the Taliban did not exist until
1994, five years after the Soviet forces
withdrew. U.S. aid to the mujahideen
ceased at that time.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a  |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong    |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman                        |
Mujahadeen, Taliban.....same people new name
Not really that's like saying the Confederate Army became the Baptist
Church- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
You seem to be playing a bit of a shell game yourself, Jack.
Background in U.S. government, perhaps?
Rich Rostrom
2008-03-09 00:37:23 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sid9
Post by Rich Rostrom
Post by Sid9
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.
Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.
The U.S. never provided _any_ support
for the Taliban...
because the Taliban did not exist until
1994, five years after the Soviet forces
withdrew. U.S. aid to the mujahideen
ceased at that time.
Mujahadeen, Taliban.....same people new name
Nonsense. The Taliban were a particular
faction of the ex-mujihadeen; they were
exclusively Sunni Pushtuns, and Deobandis
to boot. They were fiercely at odds with
the Tajik mujahideen from the north (Ahmad
Shah Massoud), Uzbeks (Abdul Rashid Dostum);
non-Deobandi Pushtuns (Gulbuddin Hekmatyar).
and of course any Shia elements.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-08 20:01:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sid9
Post by Jack Linthicum
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
 Specifically on,
1.  The future of the Soviet Union.
2.  The future of Eastern Europe.
3.  The future of Afghanistan
4.  The future of Islamic Extremism.
5.  The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism.  And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case.  Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.  And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's?  Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
No difference, the United States government never supported the Afghan
rebels, we have that on good authority, a book and a movie both said
it was done on their own by a Congressman and a rogue CIA operative.
The book is "Charlie Wilson's War" or
some such...it was a movie, too.
Our misguided excessive support
for the Taliban has caused world
turmoil....all in the name of anti-communist
zeal.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
That is, indeed, my point. As it was Mikhael Gorbachev's, when I
heard him on Echo Moscow Radio a couple of days ago. Communism is no
more the "evil empire" than Capitalism is.
M***@gmail.com
2008-03-07 19:07:59 UTC
Permalink
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
The Afghan war removed a lot of allusions in the USSR that they were
invincible. The men that came back missing limbs and (those that did
not come back) soured the Communist part to the idea of using force to
achieve their aims. I.E. Their military was not up to the task (and
the cost to adapt was too great). Had they been able to achieve
military success in Afghanistan this could have fostered a more
hawkish faction of the ruling eliete which could have led to the
spreading of the conflict. While ultimately, I believe their economic
issues would eventually have caused an political conundrum. It is
possible they may have attempted a military solution, instead of the
path they chose.
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-07 19:15:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by M***@gmail.com
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
The Afghan war removed a lot of allusions in the USSR that they were
invincible. The men that came back missing limbs and (those that did
not come back) soured the Communist part to the idea of using force to
achieve their aims. I.E. Their military was not up to the task (and
the cost to adapt was too great). Had they been able to achieve
military success in Afghanistan this could have fostered a more
hawkish faction of the ruling eliete which could have led to the
spreading of the conflict. While ultimately, I believe their economic
issues would eventually have caused an political conundrum. It is
possible they may have attempted a military solution, instead of the
path they chose.
Of course, invading the country that produced 90% of the world's
opium, after seeing the example set by the U.S. forces in Vietnam, did
not rank in the top 500 smoothest moves on record.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-08 17:59:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by M***@gmail.com
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
 Specifically on,
1.  The future of the Soviet Union.
2.  The future of Eastern Europe.
3.  The future of Afghanistan
4.  The future of Islamic Extremism.
5.  The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism.  And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case.  Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.  And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's?  Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
The Afghan war removed a lot of allusions in the USSR that they were
invincible.  The men that came back missing limbs and (those that did
not come back) soured the Communist part to the idea of using force to
achieve their aims.  I.E.  Their military was not up to the task (and
the cost to adapt was too great).  Had they been able to achieve
military success in Afghanistan this could have fostered a more
hawkish faction of the ruling eliete which could have led to the
spreading of the conflict.  While ultimately, I believe their economic
issues would eventually have caused an political conundrum.  It is
possible they may have attempted a military solution, instead of the
path they chose.
Of course, invading the country that produced 90% of the world's
opium, after seeing the example set by the U.S. forces in Vietnam, did
not rank in the top 500 smoothest moves on record.- Hide quoted text -
Besides a political wisdom (IIRC, the Soviets had been more or less
dragged into it by a need to support the proper puppet), you are
making a great point.

Put grossly underpaid military from the country suffering shortage of
all consumer goods into the drug paradise and you'll see interesting
effects even without Stingers.

Before Afghan War the Afghan hounds were among the most exotic and
rare dogs in Moscow. Then suddenly you could see them everywhere.

The same goes for the Afghan-made 'dublenka' (lambskin winter overcoat
fashionable at this time in Russia).

These were 'legitimate' items easily seen on the streets.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-08 17:48:57 UTC
Permalink
On Mar 7, 12:13 pm, Jerry Kraus <***@yahoo.com> wrote:

[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
Person who would seriously advance this argument is either (a) crook
or (b) has not clue about situation in the SU or (c) needs medical
attention.

Gorby is a combination of (a) and (b) and anybody who takes him
seriously belongs to category (c). :-)

Afghan War became an 'internal disaster' for the SU simply because it
demonstrated that the system is totally rotten even in the (only) area
about which population still had some illusions and ...er... 'national
pride'. When it was demonstrated that the military are just as corrupt
and inefficient as the rest of the system, there was nothing left to
rally people around.

A notion that pre-Afghan SU was 'prosperous' is not even funny.
Goverment had to close Moscow to provide an illusion of an adequate
food supply during the Olympic Games of 1980 and situation was
deterriorating year by year. What would be a source of any kind of
prosperity is beyond me.

Stingers and other toys would not have any noticeable effect on the
situation in Afghanistan if 'the limited contingent' was not corrupt
from top to bottom: I strongly suspect that there was much more Soviet
weaponry sold to the rebels than anything CIA could possibly provide
them with. Army was a part of a system and was falling apart, just as
the rest of it.
Sid9
2008-03-08 17:59:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system had failed.

The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.

We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.

St Ronnie may have hastened serious damage
to the United States.

His flawed economic policies were continued under both Bushs

Now we pay and pay dearly for flawed Republican policies
Post by a***@hotmail.com
And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
Person who would seriously advance this argument is either (a) crook
or (b) has not clue about situation in the SU or (c) needs medical
attention.
Gorby is a combination of (a) and (b) and anybody who takes him
seriously belongs to category (c). :-)
Afghan War became an 'internal disaster' for the SU simply because it
demonstrated that the system is totally rotten even in the (only) area
about which population still had some illusions and ...er... 'national
pride'. When it was demonstrated that the military are just as corrupt
and inefficient as the rest of the system, there was nothing left to
rally people around.
A notion that pre-Afghan SU was 'prosperous' is not even funny.
Goverment had to close Moscow to provide an illusion of an adequate
food supply during the Olympic Games of 1980 and situation was
deterriorating year by year. What would be a source of any kind of
prosperity is beyond me.
Stingers and other toys would not have any noticeable effect on the
situation in Afghanistan if 'the limited contingent' was not corrupt
from top to bottom: I strongly suspect that there was much more Soviet
weaponry sold to the rebels than anything CIA could possibly provide
them with. Army was a part of a system and was falling apart, just as
the rest of it.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-09 17:39:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system  had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-09 20:36:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system  had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Much of the "failure" of the Soviet system was a direct artefact of
low oil prices. Which also explains the current "resurgence" of
Russia -- due to high oil prices -- although their demographics are in
catastrophic decline because of crime, alchoholism and poor social
services. All systems will fail under certain circumstances. Ours is
failing as we speak, as any banker, real estate broker, bond broker or
economist will attest. Capitalism is no "stronger" fundamentally than
Communism. Just different.
Michael G. Koerner
2008-03-16 16:15:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan? Clean/messy? Potential timeline?
Fallout? Aftermath? Etc?
--
___________________________________________ ____ _______________
Regards, | |\ ____
| | | | |\
Michael G. Koerner May they | | | | | | rise again!
Appleton, Wisconsin USA | | | | | |
___________________________________________ | | | | | | _______________
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-16 19:34:13 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system  had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan?  Clean/messy?  Potential timeline?
Fallout?  Aftermath?  Etc?
--
___________________________________________  ____              _______________
Regards,                                    |    |\    ____
                                             |    | |  |    |\
Michael G. Koerner               May they   |    | |  |    | |   rise again!
Appleton, Wisconsin USA                     |    | |  |    | |
___________________________________________ |    | |  |    | | _______________- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Interesting Michael. Interesting. I'm not sure the Soviets would
have collapsed without Reagan. That is Mikhael Gorbachev's point.
He is saying that without the bankrupting policies of the Reagan
administration -- both in supporting the Afghan rebels and
economically worldwide -- the Soviet Union would have progressed
within a decade or two towards a Scandanavian style social democracy
along lines consistent with Marxist-Leninism. Gorbachev's point is
that Stalinism was a brutal aberration.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-17 19:50:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system  had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan?  Clean/messy?  Potential timeline?
Fallout?  Aftermath?  Etc?
It would probably happen because economy was in a really bad shape by
the early 80's and it was just a continuation of a trend that started
much earlier. While situation with a heavy industry & military
equipment still _looked_ more or less OK (mostly because it was
difficult to see the results), shortage of the consumer goods was
quite obvious. Probably situation could be kep under control for a
while by 'tightening the screws' but only for a while. In OTL
Andropov's attempts to 'improve discipline' were an ill-conceived
joke: people had been taken from their working places to catch other
people who were not on _their_ working places (both groups ending up
in the shops trying to buy goods that would dissapear by the end of a
day). Probably this scenario would end up with a violent clash. Or,
again, it may end up by the 'top' more or less giving up as in OTL and
selecting some transitional figure which qould guarantee their own
well-being (as opposite to the Rumanian model). For how long Army
could serve as a reliable instrument is anybodys guess. Except for the
top, the officers were underpaid and not well-provided socially
(especially in the terms of the living conditions). Not necessarily
competent as well. Soldiers were 18-19 years olds, underfed,
undertrained (see their performance during the 1st Chechen War), ill-
treated and with the fresh memories about things not being too rosy at
home. Corruption and stealing were comm so Army's loyalty and
readiness to kill their own people would be a tricky issue. Of course,
there were some elite units better supplied and trained but there was
no guarantee of their loyalty as well.


'Soft' scenario like Gorby's probably would result in something close
to OTL: people with the proper connections getting ownership of the
state enterprises, rights of export, etc. A precise amount of a social
and economic mess could vary depending on the details.

Timeline? Probably without adventures abroad (direct or by proxy)
regime could prolong its existence for a while but the Catch 22 was
that these adventures were needed to maintain prestige and to play 'we
are the Great Power' card (chauvinism as a partial compensation for a
shortage of consumer goods). OTOH, this would hardly improve situation
with agriculture with a need to buy grain abroad and a resulting need
in a hard currency (ATL would be high gas and oil prices). Plus, of
course, lagging in technology (ATL - Soviet leaders are smart enough
not to try technological competition with the US).
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-17 20:18:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Michael G. Koerner
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan? Clean/messy? Potential timeline?
Fallout? Aftermath? Etc?
It would probably happen because economy was in a really bad shape by
the early 80's and it was just a continuation of a trend that started
much earlier. While situation with a heavy industry & military
equipment still _looked_ more or less OK (mostly because it was
difficult to see the results), shortage of the consumer goods was
quite obvious. Probably situation could be kep under control for a
while by 'tightening the screws' but only for a while. In OTL
Andropov's attempts to 'improve discipline' were an ill-conceived
joke: people had been taken from their working places to catch other
people who were not on _their_ working places (both groups ending up
in the shops trying to buy goods that would dissapear by the end of a
day). Probably this scenario would end up with a violent clash. Or,
again, it may end up by the 'top' more or less giving up as in OTL and
selecting some transitional figure which qould guarantee their own
well-being (as opposite to the Rumanian model). For how long Army
could serve as a reliable instrument is anybodys guess. Except for the
top, the officers were underpaid and not well-provided socially
(especially in the terms of the living conditions). Not necessarily
competent as well. Soldiers were 18-19 years olds, underfed,
undertrained (see their performance during the 1st Chechen War), ill-
treated and with the fresh memories about things not being too rosy at
home. Corruption and stealing were comm so Army's loyalty and
readiness to kill their own people would be a tricky issue. Of course,
there were some elite units better supplied and trained but there was
no guarantee of their loyalty as well.
'Soft' scenario like Gorby's probably would result in something close
to OTL: people with the proper connections getting ownership of the
state enterprises, rights of export, etc. A precise amount of a social
and economic mess could vary depending on the details.
Timeline? Probably without adventures abroad (direct or by proxy)
regime could prolong its existence for a while but the Catch 22 was
that these adventures were needed to maintain prestige and to play 'we
are the Great Power' card (chauvinism as a partial compensation for a
shortage of consumer goods). OTOH, this would hardly improve situation
with agriculture with a need to buy grain abroad and a resulting need
in a hard currency (ATL would be high gas and oil prices). Plus, of
course, lagging in technology (ATL - Soviet leaders are smart enough
not to try technological competition with the US).
The Soviets seemed to be unable to stop development of costly
offensive weapons, or at least to find or two that served their
purposes.

Soviet Intercontinental Attack Forces (1986)
Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles

The operational Soviet ICBM force consists of some 1,400 silo and
mobile launchers, aside from those at test sites. Some 818 of the silo
launchers have been rebuilt since 1972; nearly half of these silos
have been refurbished since 1979. All 818 silos have been hardened
against attack by currently operational US ICBMs. These silos contain
the SS-17 Mod 3 (160 silos), the SS-18 Mod 4 (308), and the SS-19 Mod
3(360), which were the world's most modern deployed ICBMs until the
more modern, mobile SS-26 was deployed.

Each SS-18 and SS-19 ICBM can carry more and larger MIRVs than the
Minuteman III, the most modern deployed US ICBM. The SS-18 Mod 4
carries at least ten MIRVs, and the SS-19 Mod 3 carries six, whereas
the Minuteman III carries only three. The SS-18 Mod 4 was specifically
designed to attack and destroy ICBMs and other hardened targets in the
US. The SS-18 Mod 4 force currently deployed has the capability to
destroy about 66 to 80 percent of US ICBM silos, using two nuclear
warheads against each. Even after this type of attack, over 1,000
SS-18 warheads would be available for further attacks against targets
in the US. The SS-19 Mod 3 ICBM, while not identical to the SS-18 in
accuracy, has similar capabilities. It could be assigned similar
missions and could be used against targets in Eurasia. Although the
SS-17 is somewhat less capable than the SS-19, it has similar
targeting flexibility.

The remaining Soviet ICBM silos are fitted primarily with the SS-11
Mod 2/3s and SS-18 Mod 2s. These ICBMs of older vintage are housed in
less-survivable silos and are considerably less capable. Nevertheless,
their destructive potential against softer area targets in the United
States and Eurasia is significant in terms of many of the Soviet
requirements outlined earlier.

The most recent development in the Soviets' operational ICBM force
occurred with the deployment of their road-mobile SS-26 missile, in
violation of SALT I and SALT II. The SS-26 is approximately the same
size as the US Minuteman ICBM. It carries a single reentry vehicle and
is being deployed in a road-mobile configuration similar to that of
the SS-20. As such, it will be highly survivable with an inherent
refire capability. Several bases for the SS-26 are operational, with a
total of over 70 launchers deployed. They consist of launcher garages
equipped with sliding roofs and several support buildings to house the
requisite mobile support equipment.

Within the past year, the Soviets have begun dismantling SS-11 silos
in compensation for SS-26 deployments. The Soviets are expected to
continue to dismantle SS-11 silos. By the mid 1990s, all SS-11s will
probably be deactivated.

Deployment programs for all of the currently operational silo-based
Soviet ICBMs are essentially complete. The command, control, and
communications system that supports the Soviet ICBM force is modern
and highly survivable, and the reliability of the ICBMs themselves is
regularly tested by live firings from operational complexes.

Some silo-based ICBMs in the current force that the Soviets decide not
to replace with modified or new ICBMs will, in accord with past
practice, be refurbished to increase their useful lifetime and
reliability. During this process some system modifications also could
be made.

Force Developments. Soviet research and development on ICBMs is a
dynamic process involving many programs. A modernized version or a new
replacement for the liquid-propelled SS-18 is likely to be produced
and deployed in existing silos through the end of the century.

The Soviets appear to be planning on new solid-propellant ICBMs to
meet many future mission requirements, including a counterforce
capability. The Soviets already have two new solid-propellant ICBMs -
the small, mobile SS-25 described above, now being deployed, and the
SS-X-24. The medium-size SS-X-24 is well along in its flight test
program. The SS-X-24 deployment in a rail-mobile mode could begin as
early as late 1986. Silo-based deployment could occur later. Early
preparations for the deployment of the SS-X-24 are already underway.

Activity at the Soviet ICBM test ranges indicates that two additional
new ICBMs are underdevelopment. A new ICBM to replace the SS-18 is
nearing the flight test stage of development. Additionally, a solid-
propellant missile that may be larger than the SS-X-24 will begin
flight-testing in the next few years. Both of these missiles are
likely to have better accuracy and greater throwweight potential than
their predecessors. A third possible development is that a MIRVed
version of the SS-25 will be developed later this decade. Such a
development would further expand the already large warhead inventory
possessed by the Soviets. By the mid-199Os, the Soviet ICBM force will
have been almost entirely replaced with new systems, a number of which
may violate SALT II constraints.
Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missiles

The Soviets maintain the world's largest ballistic missile submarine
force. As of early 1986, the force numbered 62 modern SSBNs carrying
944 SALT-accountable nuclear-tipped missiles. Neither total includes
the older 13 older GOLF II SSBs with 39 missiles which are currently
assigned theater missions. The GOLF III SSB and HOTEL III SSBN are
only SALT-accountable for their missile tubes. Twenty SSBNs are fitted
with 336 MIRVed submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs). These
twenty units have been built and deployed within the past nine years.
Two-thirds of the ballistic missile submarines are fitted with long-
range SLBMs, enabling them to patrol in waters close to the Soviet
Union. This affords protection from NATO antisubmarine warfare
operations. Moreover, the long-range missiles allow the Soviets to
fire from home ports and still strike targets in the United States.

Four units of the modern Soviet ballistic missile submarine, the
TYPHOON, have already been built. Each TYPHOON carries 20 SS-N-20
solid-propellant MIRVed SLBMs. The TYPHOON is the world's largest
submarine with a displacement a third greater than that of the US Ohio-
Class. It can operate under the Arctic Ocean icecap, adding further to
the protection afforded by the 8,300-kilometer range of its SS-N-20
SLBMs. Three or four additional TYPHOONs are probably now under
construction, and by the early 1990s the Soviets could have as many as
eight of these potent weapons systems in their operational force.

In accordance with the SALT I Interim Agreement, the Soviets have,
since 1978, removed 14 YANKEE I units from service as ballistic
missile submarines. These units had to be removed as newer submarines
were produced in order for the overall Soviet SSBN force to stay
within the 62 modern SSBN/950 SLBM limits established in 1972. These
YANKEEs, however, have not been scrapped. Some have been reconfigured
as attack or long-range cruise missile submarines.

Force Developments. The Soviets have launched three units-two of which
are currently accountable under SALT - of a new class of SSBN, the
DELTA IV, which will be fitted with the SS-NX-23 SLBM, now being
flight tested. This large, liquid-propelled SLBM will have greater
throwweight, carry more warheads, and be more accurate than the SS-
N-18 which is currently carried on the DELTA III SSBN. The SS-NX-23 is
likely to be deployed on DELTA IIIs as a replacement for the SS-N-18.

The Soviets probably will begin flight-testing a modified version of
the SS-N-20. Additionally, based on past Soviet practice, they
probably will develop a modified version of the SS-NX-23 before the
end of the decade. Both modified versions of the SS-N-20 and SS-NX-23
are likely to be more accurate than their predecessors and eventually
may provide the Soviets with a hard-target capability for SLBMs.

http://www.fas.org/irp/dia/product/smp_86_ch2.htm
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-17 22:21:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system  had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan?  Clean/messy?  Potential timeline?
Fallout?  Aftermath?  Etc?
It would probably happen because economy was in a really bad shape by
the early 80's and it was just a continuation of a trend that started
much earlier. While situation with a heavy industry & military
equipment still _looked_  more or less OK (mostly because it was
difficult to see the results), shortage of the consumer goods was
quite obvious. Probably situation could be kep under control for a
while by 'tightening the screws' but only for a while. In OTL
Andropov's attempts to 'improve discipline' were an ill-conceived
joke: people had been taken from their working places to catch other
people who were not on _their_ working places (both groups ending up
in the shops trying to buy goods that would dissapear by the end of a
day). Probably this scenario would end up with a violent clash. Or,
again, it may end up by the 'top' more or less giving up as in OTL and
selecting some transitional figure which qould guarantee their own
well-being (as opposite to the Rumanian model). For how long Army
could serve as a reliable instrument is anybodys guess. Except for the
top, the officers were underpaid and not well-provided socially
(especially in the terms of the living conditions). Not necessarily
competent as well. Soldiers were 18-19 years olds, underfed,
undertrained (see their performance during the 1st Chechen War), ill-
treated and with the fresh memories about things not being too rosy at
home. Corruption and stealing were comm so Army's loyalty and
readiness to kill their own people would be a tricky issue. Of course,
there were some elite units better supplied and trained but there was
no guarantee of their loyalty as well.
'Soft' scenario like Gorby's probably would result in something close
to OTL: people with the proper connections getting ownership of the
state enterprises, rights of export, etc. A precise amount of a social
and economic mess could vary depending on the details.
 Timeline? Probably without adventures abroad (direct or by proxy)
regime could prolong its existence for a while but the Catch 22 was
that these adventures were needed to maintain prestige and to play 'we
are the Great Power' card (chauvinism as a partial compensation for a
shortage of consumer goods). OTOH, this would hardly improve situation
with agriculture with a need to buy grain abroad and a resulting need
in a hard currency (ATL would be high gas and oil prices). Plus, of
course, lagging in technology (ATL - Soviet leaders are smart enough
not to try technological competition with the US).
The Soviets seemed to be unable to stop development of costly
offensive weapons, or at least to find or two that served their
purposes.
Indeed. There was no end to it and I doubt that, short of a total
collapse of economy (OTL scenario), the Soviet leaders would ever stop
going in this direction.

Of course, it may be assumed that there was some rationale behind this
insanity (I'm NOT saying that the following really was their
consideration): being a close competitor, made the SU dangerous enough
for the US to get some concessions (like grain supply). Look at the
Yeltsin's times: as soon and as long as Russia was considered
reasonably harmless, it was treated with ..... errrr..... "no respect"
on more than one account. Now they are trying to build up their
military as a part of self-image of a 'Great Power'. Somehow it looks
very important to them.

[snip; you don't have to convince me :-)]
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-17 22:31:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Michael G. Koerner
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan? Clean/messy? Potential timeline?
Fallout? Aftermath? Etc?
It would probably happen because economy was in a really bad shape by
the early 80's and it was just a continuation of a trend that started
much earlier. While situation with a heavy industry & military
equipment still _looked_ more or less OK (mostly because it was
difficult to see the results), shortage of the consumer goods was
quite obvious. Probably situation could be kep under control for a
while by 'tightening the screws' but only for a while. In OTL
Andropov's attempts to 'improve discipline' were an ill-conceived
joke: people had been taken from their working places to catch other
people who were not on _their_ working places (both groups ending up
in the shops trying to buy goods that would dissapear by the end of a
day). Probably this scenario would end up with a violent clash. Or,
again, it may end up by the 'top' more or less giving up as in OTL and
selecting some transitional figure which qould guarantee their own
well-being (as opposite to the Rumanian model). For how long Army
could serve as a reliable instrument is anybodys guess. Except for the
top, the officers were underpaid and not well-provided socially
(especially in the terms of the living conditions). Not necessarily
competent as well. Soldiers were 18-19 years olds, underfed,
undertrained (see their performance during the 1st Chechen War), ill-
treated and with the fresh memories about things not being too rosy at
home. Corruption and stealing were comm so Army's loyalty and
readiness to kill their own people would be a tricky issue. Of course,
there were some elite units better supplied and trained but there was
no guarantee of their loyalty as well.
'Soft' scenario like Gorby's probably would result in something close
to OTL: people with the proper connections getting ownership of the
state enterprises, rights of export, etc. A precise amount of a social
and economic mess could vary depending on the details.
Timeline? Probably without adventures abroad (direct or by proxy)
regime could prolong its existence for a while but the Catch 22 was
that these adventures were needed to maintain prestige and to play 'we
are the Great Power' card (chauvinism as a partial compensation for a
shortage of consumer goods). OTOH, this would hardly improve situation
with agriculture with a need to buy grain abroad and a resulting need
in a hard currency (ATL would be high gas and oil prices). Plus, of
course, lagging in technology (ATL - Soviet leaders are smart enough
not to try technological competition with the US).
The Soviets seemed to be unable to stop development of costly
offensive weapons, or at least to find or two that served their
purposes.
Indeed. There was no end to it and I doubt that, short of a total
collapse of economy (OTL scenario), the Soviet leaders would ever stop
going in this direction.
Of course, it may be assumed that there was some rationale behind this
insanity (I'm NOT saying that the following really was their
consideration): being a close competitor, made the SU dangerous enough
for the US to get some concessions (like grain supply). Look at the
Yeltsin's times: as soon and as long as Russia was considered
reasonably harmless, it was treated with ..... errrr..... "no respect"
on more than one account. Now they are trying to build up their
military as a part of self-image of a 'Great Power'. Somehow it looks
very important to them.
[snip; you don't have to convince me :-)]
Old CIA joke, the Soviet Union is Romania with a very large armed
force..
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-18 13:08:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system  had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan?  Clean/messy?  Potential timeline?
Fallout?  Aftermath?  Etc?
It would probably happen because economy was in a really bad shape by
the early 80's and it was just a continuation of a trend that started
much earlier. While situation with a heavy industry & military
equipment still _looked_  more or less OK (mostly because it was
difficult to see the results), shortage of the consumer goods was
quite obvious. Probably situation could be kep under control for a
while by 'tightening the screws' but only for a while. In OTL
Andropov's attempts to 'improve discipline' were an ill-conceived
joke: people had been taken from their working places to catch other
people who were not on _their_ working places (both groups ending up
in the shops trying to buy goods that would dissapear by the end of a
day). Probably this scenario would end up with a violent clash. Or,
again, it may end up by the 'top' more or less giving up as in OTL and
selecting some transitional figure which qould guarantee their own
well-being (as opposite to the Rumanian model). For how long Army
could serve as a reliable instrument is anybodys guess. Except for the
top, the officers were underpaid and not well-provided socially
(especially in the terms of the living conditions). Not necessarily
competent as well. Soldiers were 18-19 years olds, underfed,
undertrained (see their performance during the 1st Chechen War), ill-
treated and with the fresh memories about things not being too rosy at
home. Corruption and stealing were comm so Army's loyalty and
readiness to kill their own people would be a tricky issue. Of course,
there were some elite units better supplied and trained but there was
no guarantee of their loyalty as well.
'Soft' scenario like Gorby's probably would result in something close
to OTL: people with the proper connections getting ownership of the
state enterprises, rights of export, etc. A precise amount of a social
and economic mess could vary depending on the details.
 Timeline? Probably without adventures abroad (direct or by proxy)
regime could prolong its existence for a while but the Catch 22 was
that these adventures were needed to maintain prestige and to play 'we
are the Great Power' card (chauvinism as a partial compensation for a
shortage of consumer goods). OTOH, this would hardly improve situation
with agriculture with a need to buy grain abroad and a resulting need
in a hard currency (ATL would be high gas and oil prices). Plus, of
course, lagging in technology (ATL - Soviet leaders are smart enough
not to try technological competition with the US).
The Soviets seemed to be unable to stop development of costly
offensive weapons, or at least to find or two that served their
purposes.
Indeed. There was no end to it and I doubt that, short of a total
collapse of economy (OTL scenario), the Soviet leaders would ever stop
going in this direction.
Of course, it may be assumed that there was some rationale behind this
insanity (I'm NOT saying that the following really was their
consideration): being a close competitor, made the SU dangerous enough
for the US to get some concessions (like grain supply). Look at the
Yeltsin's times: as soon and as long as Russia was considered
reasonably harmless, it was treated with ..... errrr..... "no respect"
on more than one account. Now they are trying to build up their
military as a part of self-image of a 'Great Power'. Somehow it looks
very important to them.
[snip; you don't have to convince me :-)]
Old CIA joke, the Soviet Union is Romania with a very large armed
force..
As it was formulated by one of the 'ideologists' of Nicholas I,
"Russia is neither industrial nor agriculotural country. It is a
military state which keeps the world scared of its might". Add to this
"Where the Russian flag was once hoisted, becomes Russian territory
forever" (Peter I). There was no substantial change in the 'imperial
attitude' from the early XVIII till the fall of the SU and it strongly
looks like this imperial attitude is still alive and kicking. And to
have an empire you have to have the big guns.....
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-18 15:29:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Jack Linthicum
The Soviets seemed to be unable to stop development of costly
offensive weapons, or at least to find or two that served their
purposes.
Indeed. There was no end to it and I doubt that, short of a total
collapse of economy (OTL scenario), the Soviet leaders would ever stop
going in this direction.
Of course, it may be assumed that there was some rationale behind this
insanity (I'm NOT saying that the following really was their
consideration): being a close competitor, made the SU dangerous enough
for the US to get some concessions (like grain supply). Look at the
Yeltsin's times: as soon and as long as Russia was considered
reasonably harmless, it was treated with ..... errrr..... "no respect"
on more than one account. Now they are trying to build up their
military as a part of self-image of a 'Great Power'. Somehow it looks
very important to them.
[snip; you don't have to convince me :-)]- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
As, I assume, an American, why would it surprise you that weapons
development should be important to the Soviets/Russians? Surely, the
U.S. derives most of its influence from its powerful weapons systems
and military. We haven't any technological edge over the Europeans,
for example. Not much over the Chinese or India anymore. The U.S. is
its "big stick", and not much else.

The Russians are simply being normal in seeing the importance of a
powerful military, although the U.S. doesn't like it that way.
Countries like Canada, with virtually no military because they are a
U.S. protectorate, are quite rare.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-18 15:23:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Sid9
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
Star Wars was a waste of American resources.
IIRC, it also resulted in a serious technological advancement.
Post by Sid9
Our CIA knew damn well that the Soviet economic
system  had failed.
Yes. This was the whole point: Soviet attempts to match up at least a
fraction of the American expences meant total collapse of the system
(instead of a much slower death by stagnation).
Post by Sid9
The Soviets could not feed their own people
Food stores were empty of food.
The only economy that was functioning was an
underground black market system.
Thanks for explaining this but I happen to have 1st hand experience in
THIS. :-)
Post by Sid9
We need only have been a little patient and
the Soviet Union would have collapsed.
Well, it could easily take a decade or more comparing to OTL. Impact
of the Reagan's program on the Soviet economy was easily visible
inside the Worker's Paradise.
ObWI - Soviet collapse W/O Ronald Reagan?  Clean/messy?  Potential timeline?
Fallout?  Aftermath?  Etc?
It would probably happen because economy was in a really bad shape by
the early 80's and it was just a continuation of a trend that started
much earlier. While situation with a heavy industry & military
equipment still _looked_  more or less OK (mostly because it was
difficult to see the results), shortage of the consumer goods was
quite obvious. Probably situation could be kep under control for a
while by 'tightening the screws' but only for a while. In OTL
Andropov's attempts to 'improve discipline' were an ill-conceived
joke: people had been taken from their working places to catch other
people who were not on _their_ working places (both groups ending up
in the shops trying to buy goods that would dissapear by the end of a
day). Probably this scenario would end up with a violent clash. Or,
again, it may end up by the 'top' more or less giving up as in OTL and
selecting some transitional figure which qould guarantee their own
well-being (as opposite to the Rumanian model). For how long Army
could serve as a reliable instrument is anybodys guess. Except for the
top, the officers were underpaid and not well-provided socially
(especially in the terms of the living conditions). Not necessarily
competent as well. Soldiers were 18-19 years olds, underfed,
undertrained (see their performance during the 1st Chechen War), ill-
treated and with the fresh memories about things not being too rosy at
home. Corruption and stealing were comm so Army's loyalty and
readiness to kill their own people would be a tricky issue. Of course,
there were some elite units better supplied and trained but there was
no guarantee of their loyalty as well.
'Soft' scenario like Gorby's probably would result in something close
to OTL: people with the proper connections getting ownership of the
state enterprises, rights of export, etc. A precise amount of a social
and economic mess could vary depending on the details.
 Timeline? Probably without adventures abroad (direct or by proxy)
regime could prolong its existence for a while but the Catch 22 was
that these adventures were needed to maintain prestige and to play 'we
are the Great Power' card (chauvinism as a partial compensation for a
shortage of consumer goods). OTOH, this would hardly improve situation
with agriculture with a need to buy grain abroad and a resulting need
in a hard currency (ATL would be high gas and oil prices). Plus, of
course, lagging in technology (ATL - Soviet leaders are smart enough
not to try technological competition with the US).- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Well, at least you acknowledge that Reagan deliberately speeded up the
process. Gorbachev was trying to fundamentally change Russian/Soviet
society so that it could compete effectively with the U.S. and
Europe. Rather than trying to help, Reagan deliberately bankrupted
the country by supporting the Rebels in Afghanistan. The whole Iran-
Iraq War was a factor too, I expect, in keeping oil prices low, and in
keeping the whole region well supplied with unlimited weapons to fight
the Soviets with. The geopolitical economy was being manipulated in a
variety of ways to undermine the Soviets, and to profit the U.S. The
U.S. loved the Iran-Iraq war. They even put up with the Iraqis
destroying a U.S. ship in the Gulf with hardly a complaint!
Rich Rostrom
2008-03-18 20:07:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
They even put up with the Iraqis
destroying a U.S. ship in the Gulf with hardly a complaint!
In 1987, USS STARK was damaged by two Exocet missiles,
but not sunk or "destroyed". She was repaired
and returned to service in 1990 - operating in
the Middle East several time in the next nine
years. She was not decommissioned till 1999.

Iraq apologized and paid damages.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-18 20:19:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by Rich Rostrom
Post by Jerry Kraus
They even put up with the Iraqis
destroying a U.S. ship in the Gulf with hardly a complaint!
In 1987, USS STARK was damaged by two Exocet missiles,
but not sunk or "destroyed". She was repaired
and returned to service in 1990 - operating in
the Middle East several time in the next nine
years. She was not decommissioned till 1999.
Iraq apologized and paid damages.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a  |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong    |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman                        |
Well, Hell, the Iraqis were our good buddies back in 1987, weren't
they!

Just a love tap.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-08 20:10:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
Person who would seriously advance this argument is either (a) crook
or (b) has not clue about situation in the SU or (c) needs medical
attention.
Gorby is a combination of (a) and (b) and anybody who takes him
seriously belongs to category (c). :-)
Afghan War became an 'internal disaster' for the SU simply because it
demonstrated that the system is totally rotten even in the (only) area
about which population still had some illusions and ...er... 'national
pride'. When it was demonstrated that the military are just as corrupt
and inefficient as the rest of the system, there was nothing left to
rally people around.
A notion that pre-Afghan SU was 'prosperous' is not even funny.
Goverment had to close Moscow to provide an illusion of an adequate
food supply during the Olympic Games of 1980 and situation was
deterriorating year by year. What would be a source of any kind of
prosperity is beyond me.
Stingers and other toys would not have any noticeable effect on the
situation in Afghanistan if 'the limited contingent' was not corrupt
from top to bottom: I strongly suspect that there was much more Soviet
weaponry sold to the rebels than anything CIA could possibly provide
them with. Army was a part of a system and was falling apart, just as
the rest of it.
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!

As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens, whether you like the idea or not. Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.

You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-08 23:15:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
Person who would seriously advance this argument is either (a) crook
or (b) has not clue about situation in the SU or (c) needs medical
attention.
Gorby is a combination of (a) and (b) and anybody who takes him
seriously belongs to category (c). :-)
Afghan War became an 'internal disaster' for the SU simply because it
demonstrated that the system is totally rotten even in the (only) area
about which population still had some illusions and ...er... 'national
pride'. When it was demonstrated that the military are just as corrupt
and inefficient as the rest of the system, there was nothing left to
rally people around.
A notion that pre-Afghan SU was 'prosperous' is not even funny.
Goverment had to close Moscow to provide an illusion of an adequate
food supply during the Olympic Games of 1980 and situation was
deterriorating year by year. What would be a source of any kind of
prosperity is beyond me.
Stingers and other toys would not have any noticeable effect on the
situation in Afghanistan if 'the limited contingent' was not corrupt
from top to bottom: I strongly suspect that there was much more Soviet
weaponry sold to the rebels than anything CIA could possibly provide
them with. Army was a part of a system and was falling apart, just as
the rest of it.
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.

This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?

The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt. It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design. It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not. Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that? In what way? Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.


If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917, it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.

It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-09 20:33:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.
This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?
The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt.  It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design.  It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror  that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that?  In what way?  Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.
If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917,  it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.
It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If Capitalism is such a superior system, why is life expectancy in
Russia still several years less than it was in the Soviet Union?

http://www.americablog.com/2007/08/us-41st-in-infant-mortality-worldwide.html

Life Expectancy Falls In Russia


NEW YORK (Reuters) -- The average life expectancy of Russian men
declined by more than six years between 1990-1994, researchers say,
while Russian women saw their life expectancy decline by more than
three years over the same time period.

Experts blame the trend on a post-communist surge in rates of heart
disease, suicide, homicide, and alcohol use among middle-aged
Russians.

"The rise in mortality was related to a number of factors," say
researchers reporting in the March 11th issue of The Journal of the
American Medical Association (JAMA), "including rapidly declining
social and economic conditions, poor personal health behaviors, and a
deteriorating healthcare system."

Experts at the (US) National Center for Health Statistics at the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia,
working with statisticians at MedSocEconomInform and the Ministry of
Health in Russia, tabulated and analyzed Russian mortality trends
during the years following the dissolution of the Soviet Union.

They say the overall life expectancy of Russian men declined from 63.8
years to 57.7 years, and that of Russian women from 74.4 to 71.2
years, between 1990-1994.

"In that five-year period, the annual number of (Russian) deaths rose
by almost 650,000, or about 39%," the experts say, with 65% of that
increase linked to deaths attributed to either heart disease or
injuries (including accidents, suicides, or homicides). They note that
the most dramatic rise in death rates occurred among young adults and
the middle-aged -- individuals between 25 to 64 years of age.

In comparison, the CDC experts note that US death rates continued to
fall during the first half of the 1990s. The average American man can
now expect to live an average of 72.4 years (up from 71.8 in 1990),
while American women can look forward to an average of 79 years of
life (up from 78.8 in 1990).

The researchers say that "In 1994, almost all the Russian cause-
specific death rates were substantially higher than the US rates: 2
times higher for diseases of the heart, 3.4 times higher for
homicides, 3.5 times higher for suicides, 6 times for stroke and other
injuries, and 16 times higher for other alcohol-related causes."

Alcohol may be a major factor behind declining life expectancy in the
former Soviet Union. The price of Russian alcohol has remained stable
or fallen between 1990-1994, despite a concurrent rise in the price of
food, housing, and other consumer goods. The study authors believe
rising public consumption of cheap, homemade, (and often toxic) liquor
has triggered a rise in binge drinking-related alcohol poisonings,
strokes, and violence.

Exacerbating the situation are falling incomes (38% of Russian
families now live in poverty), and steady increases in corruption and
crime. The authors believe "increasing poverty and the dissolution of
social controls may have played a key role in rising levels of
homicide and suicide in Russia."

Finally, deteriorations in the Russian healthcare system, including
what the experts call a "virtual disappearance from the market of
certain essential pharmaceutical drugs," continue to hamper both the
prevention and treatment of disease.

Still, the study authors believe that recent increases in Russian
death rates "may be coming to an end." They point out that during
1995, the life expectancy of Russian men and women actually rose, to
58.3 and 71.7 years, respectively. The study authors believe those
numbers could either signal the beginning of a turnaround, or, more
pessimistically, mark "the leveling-off of mortality rates at an
extremely high level."

In an accompanying editorial, Dr. David A. Leon of the London School
of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and Dr. Vladimir M. Shkolnikov of the
Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow note that the decline in Russian
life expectancy appears to have stopped. "In 1995 and 1996," they
write, "life expectancy at birth increased 2.2 years for men and 1.4
years for women, although these are still the lowest in more than 40
years."

Leon and Shkolnikov suggest that taking steps to reduce alcohol
consumption -- such as increasing tax on alcohol -- may help to raise
life expectancy. They also recommend "strategies to curtail tobacco's
influence," and "promotion of a more health conscious culture."

SOURCE: The Journal of the American Medical Association, (1998;279(10):
790-792, 793-800)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Russia
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-10 02:08:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.
This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?
The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt. It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design. It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not. Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that? In what way? Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.
If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917, it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.
It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If Capitalism is such a superior system, why is life expectancy in
Russia still several years less than it was in the Soviet Union?
Several reasons

1 time lag, regardless of what system you are using now, you still
have to pay for the legacy of environmental and public health policies
in previous times with the resources you have now. Witness the
monumental environmental problems the FSU has.

2 Soviet statistic often lied, so that previous high life expectancy
may be fictional.

3 they are not using a capitalist system now, they have a mixed
economy with very poor rule of law.

Good stable rule of law is critical to capitalist economy. If a man
with property cannot trust the government to not seize his property,
the sane thing for him to do is move it out of reach of the government
and flee himself.

You see a lot of that. Note what happened to the owner of that oil
firm that crossed Putin.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-10 13:35:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.
This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?
The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt.  It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design.  It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror  that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that?  In what way?  Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.
If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917,  it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.
It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If Capitalism is such a superior system, why is life expectancy in
Russia still several years less than it was in the Soviet Union?
Several reasons
1  time lag,  regardless of what system you are using now, you still
have to pay for the legacy of environmental and public health policies
in previous times with the resources you have now.  Witness the
monumental environmental problems the FSU has.
Malnutrition for generations plus ...er... 'universally available'
medical services that would not pass as 'basic' in the terms of
quality in the US. I'm ready to listen to the drolling about the
advantages of a Soviet-style medicine only after <whoever> provides an
evidience that he/she/it had root canals done without anestesia (or
with arsenic used as anestesia). :-)
Post by Alfred Montestruc
2  Soviet statistic often lied, so that previous high life expectancy
may be fictional.
"There are lies, outrageous lies and statistics".

Soviet statistics was something from sc-fi area due to 2 factors:

1. The goals had been set by the leaders
and
2. The source data had been falsified on each step to the top

So, even if somebody wanted to provide correct information, it simply
was not available.

.
Post by Alfred Montestruc
3  they are not using a capitalist system now, they have a mixed
economy with very poor rule of law.
Good stable rule of law is critical to capitalist economy.   If a man
with property cannot trust the government to not seize his property,
the sane thing for him to do is move it out of reach of the government
and flee himself.
AFAIK, most of the post-Soviet super-rich tend to invest the looted
money outside Russia (ditto for sending their children abroad for
education).
Post by Alfred Montestruc
You see a lot of that.  Note what happened to the owner of that oil
firm that crossed Putin.
Ah, but he did broke the BASIC law: you can do whatever you want as
long as you do NOT cross <whoever is on the top>. As I understand,
this is one of the laws which are strictly enforced in Russia. :-)

BTW, with all the buzz related to this particular case nobody (AFAIK)
asked HOW did he became an oil tycoon. In the capitalist economy you
have to spend a LOT of money to establish an oil company but, AFAIK,
all these post-Soviet capitalists simply became owners of the existing
properties (and the rights to expliot natural resources) without
investing any serious money: where would they get these money from to
start with?
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-10 17:46:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.
This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?
The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt.  It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design.  It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror  that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that?  In what way?  Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.
If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917,  it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.
It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If Capitalism is such a superior system, why is life expectancy in
Russia still several years less than it was in the Soviet Union?
Several reasons
1  time lag,  regardless of what system you are using now, you still
have to pay for the legacy of environmental and public health policies
in previous times with the resources you have now.  Witness the
monumental environmental problems the FSU has.
Malnutrition for generations plus ...er... 'universally available'
medical services that would not pass as 'basic' in the terms of
quality in the US. I'm ready to listen to the drolling about the
advantages of a Soviet-style medicine only after <whoever> provides an
evidience that he/she/it had root canals done without anestesia (or
with arsenic used as anestesia). :-)
Post by Alfred Montestruc
2  Soviet statistic often lied, so that previous high life expectancy
may be fictional.
"There are lies, outrageous lies and statistics".
1. The goals had been set by the leaders
and
2. The source data had been falsified on each step to the top
So, even if somebody wanted to provide correct information, it simply
was not available.
.
Post by Alfred Montestruc
3  they are not using a capitalist system now, they have a mixed
economy with very poor rule of law.
Good stable rule of law is critical to capitalist economy.   If a man
with property cannot trust the government to not seize his property,
the sane thing for him to do is move it out of reach of the government
and flee himself.
AFAIK, most of the post-Soviet super-rich tend to invest the looted
money outside Russia (ditto for sending their children abroad for
education).
Post by Alfred Montestruc
You see a lot of that.  Note what happened to the owner of that oil
firm that crossed Putin.
Ah, but he did broke the BASIC law: you can do whatever you want as
long as you do NOT cross <whoever is on the top>. As I understand,
this is one of the laws which are strictly enforced in Russia. :-)
BTW, with all the buzz related to this particular case nobody (AFAIK)
asked HOW did he became an oil tycoon. In the capitalist economy you
have to spend a LOT of money to establish an oil company but, AFAIK,
all these post-Soviet capitalists simply became owners of the existing
properties (and the rights to expliot natural resources) without
investing any serious money: where would they get these money from to
start with?- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
No one, aside from propagandists like yourself, seriously disputes
that crime was lower, and life expectancy higher in the Soviet Union
than it is in contemporary Russia. What would you expect from a
highly controlled system? You can't have it both ways in the real
world -- unlike in your fantasy world. Yes, the Soviet Union was
repressive and controlled. But, certain things like crime and
alcoholism tend to be lower in controlled systems. So, less crime,
higher life expectancy.

By the way, Capitalist health care really sucks. I've lived in both
Canada and the U.S. Capitalist doctors kill people for money.
Regularly. Socialist doctors are trained to cure people.
Exclusively.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-10 18:46:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.
This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?
The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt.  It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design.  It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror  that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that?  In what way?  Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.
If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917,  it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.
It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If Capitalism is such a superior system, why is life expectancy in
Russia still several years less than it was in the Soviet Union?
Several reasons
1  time lag,  regardless of what system you are using now, you still
have to pay for the legacy of environmental and public health policies
in previous times with the resources you have now.  Witness the
monumental environmental problems the FSU has.
Malnutrition for generations plus ...er... 'universally available'
medical services that would not pass as 'basic' in the terms of
quality in the US. I'm ready to listen to the drolling about the
advantages of a Soviet-style medicine only after <whoever> provides an
evidience that he/she/it had root canals done without anestesia (or
with arsenic used as anestesia). :-)
Post by Alfred Montestruc
2  Soviet statistic often lied, so that previous high life expectancy
may be fictional.
"There are lies, outrageous lies and statistics".
1. The goals had been set by the leaders
and
2. The source data had been falsified on each step to the top
So, even if somebody wanted to provide correct information, it simply
was not available.
.
Post by Alfred Montestruc
3  they are not using a capitalist system now, they have a mixed
economy with very poor rule of law.
Good stable rule of law is critical to capitalist economy.   If a man
with property cannot trust the government to not seize his property,
the sane thing for him to do is move it out of reach of the government
and flee himself.
AFAIK, most of the post-Soviet super-rich tend to invest the looted
money outside Russia (ditto for sending their children abroad for
education).
Post by Alfred Montestruc
You see a lot of that.  Note what happened to the owner of that oil
firm that crossed Putin.
Ah, but he did broke the BASIC law: you can do whatever you want as
long as you do NOT cross <whoever is on the top>. As I understand,
this is one of the laws which are strictly enforced in Russia. :-)
BTW, with all the buzz related to this particular case nobody (AFAIK)
asked HOW did he became an oil tycoon. In the capitalist economy you
have to spend a LOT of money to establish an oil company but, AFAIK,
all these post-Soviet capitalists simply became owners of the existing
properties (and the rights to expliot natural resources) without
investing any serious money: where would they get these money from to
start with?- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
No one, aside from propagandists like yourself, seriously disputes
that crime was lower, and life expectancy higher in the Soviet Union
than it is in contemporary Russia.
This is rather stupid statement because:

(a) It has nothing to do with your initial statement about
'prosperous' SU.

(b) Definition of 'crime' in the former SU and modern Russia is not
necessarily the same.

(c) According to the official Soviet data certain types of crime
simply did not 'exist', like prostitution and narcobusiness. Which, of
course, had nothing to do with a reality.
Post by Jerry Kraus
 What would you expect from a
highly controlled system?
Why don't you stop blabling about the issues that you do not
understand? The SU was lousy in controlling both a violent crime and
routine theft (all country was stealing whatever they could from the
"state").
Post by Jerry Kraus
  You can't have it both ways in the real
world -- unlike in your fantasy world.
Unlike you, with your wet dreams, I used to live under this system.
Post by Jerry Kraus
 Yes, the Soviet Union was
repressive and controlled.  But, certain things like crime and
alcoholism tend to be lower in controlled systems.
Alcoholism was low in the SU? You really have no clue what you are
talking about. During Breznev's times getting drunk on your workplace
was a normal behavior and vodka/samogon/technical spirit were main
'hard currency' to pay for almost any service.
Post by Jerry Kraus
 So, less crime,
higher life expectancy.
Rather logical conclusion from one who has no clue, like you.
Post by Jerry Kraus
By the way, Capitalist health care really sucks.  I've lived in both
Canada and the U.S.
Did you live in the SU as well?
Post by Jerry Kraus
 Capitalist doctors kill people for money.
Hmmm.... you are obviously an exception...
Post by Jerry Kraus
Regularly.  Socialist doctors are trained to cure people.
I wonder where did you get this notion from?
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-10 19:00:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by a***@hotmail.com
AFAIK, most of the post-Soviet super-rich tend to invest the looted
money outside Russia (ditto for sending their children abroad for
education).
Post by Alfred Montestruc
You see a lot of that.  Note what happened to the owner of that oil
firm that crossed Putin.
Ah, but he did broke the BASIC law: you can do whatever you want as
long as you do NOT cross <whoever is on the top>. As I understand,
this is one of the laws which are strictly enforced in Russia. :-)
BTW, with all the buzz related to this particular case nobody (AFAIK)
asked HOW did he became an oil tycoon. In the capitalist economy you
have to spend a LOT of money to establish an oil company but, AFAIK,
all these post-Soviet capitalists simply became owners of the existing
properties (and the rights to expliot natural resources) without
investing any serious money: where would they get these money from to
start with?- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
No one, aside from propagandists like yourself, seriously disputes
that crime was lower, and life expectancy higher in the Soviet Union
than it is in contemporary Russia.
(a) It has nothing to do with your initial statement about
'prosperous' SU.
(b) Definition of 'crime' in the former SU and modern Russia is not
necessarily the same.
(c) According to the official Soviet data certain types of crime
simply did not 'exist', like prostitution and narcobusiness. Which, of
course, had nothing to do with a reality.
Post by Jerry Kraus
 What would you expect from a
highly controlled system?
Why don't you stop blabling about the issues that you do not
understand? The SU was lousy in controlling both a violent crime and
routine theft (all country was stealing whatever they could from the
"state").
Post by Jerry Kraus
  You can't have it both ways in the real
world -- unlike in your fantasy world.
Unlike you, with your wet dreams, I used to live under this system.
Post by Jerry Kraus
 Yes, the Soviet Union was
repressive and controlled.  But, certain things like crime and
alcoholism tend to be lower in controlled systems.
Alcoholism was low in the SU? You really have no clue what you are
talking about. During Breznev's times getting drunk on your workplace
was a normal behavior and vodka/samogon/technical spirit were main
'hard currency' to pay for almost any service.
Post by Jerry Kraus
 So, less crime,
higher life expectancy.
Rather logical conclusion from one who has no clue, like you.
Post by Jerry Kraus
By the way, Capitalist health care really sucks.  I've lived in both
Canada and the U.S.
Did you live in the SU as well?
Post by Jerry Kraus
 Capitalist doctors kill people for money.
Hmmm.... you are obviously an exception...
Post by Jerry Kraus
Regularly.  Socialist doctors are trained to cure people.
I wonder where did you get this notion from?- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If, as you say, you lived under the Soviet system, do provide us with
detailed information, anecdotal or otherwise. I've posted this thread
on some russian sites in hopes of getting more information. Just
saying "it was awful, forget about it" won't quite do, I'm afraid.

The Soviet Union provided powerful competition for the United States
for decades. The Soviet Union defeated Hitler. The Soviet Union put
the first Satellite in space and the first man in space. And, I'm not
aware of anyone questioning that life expectancy rose dramatically in
the Soviet Union, despite its oppression. Or, that it dropped
dramatically after its breakup.

Cuba is better run than most nations in Latin America. Cubans have no
interest in "escaping to Mexico", although Mexico is quite
capitalist. They escape to the U.S., because it is richer. They'd
probably prefer to go to socialist western europe, if they had the
choice. Better social services.

And, if you don't know that socialist Canadian health care is superior
to capitalist American health care, you're just ignorant. I have
lived under both of those systems, for decades in both, and I do
certainly know what I am talking about there.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-10 14:33:57 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.
This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?
The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt.  It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design.  It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror  that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that?  In what way?  Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.
If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917,  it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.
It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If Capitalism is such a superior system, why is life expectancy in
Russia still several years less than it was in the Soviet Union?
Several reasons
1  time lag,  regardless of what system you are using now, you still
have to pay for the legacy of environmental and public health policies
in previous times with the resources you have now.  Witness the
monumental environmental problems the FSU has.
2  Soviet statistic often lied, so that previous high life expectancy
may be fictional.
3  they are not using a capitalist system now, they have a mixed
economy with very poor rule of law.
Good stable rule of law is critical to capitalist economy.   If a man
with property cannot trust the government to not seize his property,
the sane thing for him to do is move it out of reach of the government
and flee himself.
You see a lot of that.  Note what happened to the owner of that oil
firm that crossed Putin.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
I think we're getting into the extremely thorny issue of what exactly
a "Capitalist" system is, and when it is being used. Generally,
Capitalist apologists attempt to argue out of existence all of the
more horrific consequences of Capitalism -- slavery in the American
South, the Irish Hunger, the First World War, nineteenth century
Imperialism, the Vietnam War, the current Iraq War, the deaths of
millions through inadequate Health Care and Insurance -- and to focus
on the deaths in Communist systems through executions, where and when
these were common, as under Stalin. Cuba currently has far few people
in prison per capita than the United States, and few if any
executions.

Russia appears to be a highly "Capitalist" system -- there are huge
disparaties of wealth, business activity is active and open, and the
wealthiest people in the society are businessmen. It is not, however,
particularly democratic under Putin. Capitalism and Democracy are not
equivalent. Fascist systems under Mussolini, Hitler and Franco were
Capitalist in any normal sense of the term, but they were
authoritarian and undemocratic. Modern China, on the other hand, is
still highly Communist -- the government controls almost all property
in the country, and business activity is very highly regulated and
controlled.

The fact that, in Russia, billionaires who directly challenge the
government often end up exiled or in prisond does not mean that it is
not a highly capitalist system. It just means that the wealthy are
not allowed to control the political process to the extent that they
are in the U.S., and, to a lesser extent, in Europe. Russia seems to
be following a somewhat "Peronist" model, as Echo Moscow Radio has
suggested from time to time.
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-11 02:18:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens
Till the communist economic system slagged down.
This is like saying the Titanic was a great ship, so why should you
get in a life boat?
The "social safety net" provided by the communist system was worthless
as the system was bankrupt. It would have collapsed in any case
because the system has massive flaws in it's design. It only worked
as long as it did on shear brute force and terror that
Post by Jerry Kraus
, whether you like the idea or not. Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Better that? In what way? Promises that cannot be kept because the
system is not able to keep them are worthless.
If the communism was all it was advertised to be, and was handed
Czarist Russia, all those natural resources, hundreds of millions of
workers in 1917, it should have beaten the rest of the world with
their "backward" economic systems.
It did not, it is obvious the system was grossly flawed, and that all
varieties of Marxism are in a word, wrong.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more.
And you are a pro-communist propagandist, and that is quite a lot
less.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
If Capitalism is such a superior system, why is life expectancy in
Russia still several years less than it was in the Soviet Union?
Several reasons
1 time lag, regardless of what system you are using now, you still
have to pay for the legacy of environmental and public health policies
in previous times with the resources you have now. Witness the
monumental environmental problems the FSU has.
2 Soviet statistic often lied, so that previous high life expectancy
may be fictional.
3 they are not using a capitalist system now, they have a mixed
economy with very poor rule of law.
Good stable rule of law is critical to capitalist economy. If a man
with property cannot trust the government to not seize his property,
the sane thing for him to do is move it out of reach of the government
and flee himself.
You see a lot of that. Note what happened to the owner of that oil
firm that crossed Putin.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
I think we're getting into the extremely thorny issue of what exactly
a "Capitalist" system is, and when it is being used. Generally,
Capitalist apologists attempt to argue out of existence all of the
more horrific consequences of Capitalism -- slavery in the American
South, the Irish Hunger, the First World War, nineteenth century
Imperialism, the Vietnam War, the current Iraq War, the deaths of
millions through inadequate Health Care and Insurance -- and to focus
on the deaths in Communist systems through executions, where and when
these were common, as under Stalin. Cuba currently has far few people
in prison per capita than the United States, and few if any
executions.
Not true a citizen of Cuba is not free to leave Cuba, so the whole
place is a prison, so they have an ~ 100% incarceration rate. ;-)

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

The USA is no longer a capitalist nation. It has been a mixed economy
since before FDR. I would say at this point in time it is hand has
been becoming an ever more fascist state.

A series of good points in history to use to show the shift from an
approximately pure capitalist system in the USA to a mixed economy
are the following;

The federal reserve act of 1913 which destroyed the previous US system
of sound gold backed money, and caused the great depression and the
massive inflation we have had since that time which is defacto a
hidden tax.

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



The 16th amendment to the US constitution making income taxation legal
passed in 1913.

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

This should have been fought tooth and nail on the basis that no
government of a free people has the right to even KNOW how much any
individual citizen makes per year, let alone know how much each of
them do.

Then we have the famous "Mann act" of 1910 which the federal
government had no business passing at all which is another case of do-
gooder busybodies thinking that no woman would ever want to be a
prostitute, so obviously someone must have forced all the existing
prostitutes into the trade, and held them at gunpoint. Right. Not
one case of girls who find out they can get paid, and paid well to
have sex with a lot of men, or live as one man's slave for the rest of
their lives choosing the former.

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



The Harrison narcotics act of 1914, which made the presumption that
the state had the right to regulate what chemicals an otherwise law
abiding person could ingest.

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

All of this was a load of shit.


Generally a capitalist system has rule of law with the specification
that people own the product of their labor and other property they
claim so long as this claim cannot be proven false using an objective
system of laws and courts.

As in just because you claim that tycoon "A" swindled and cheated the
people who worked for him, does not mean you can do anything about it
unless you can prove it in a court of law by the standing legal rules
of evidence.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-12 14:44:36 UTC
Permalink
Alfred, you sound like an objectivist, a follower of Ayn Rand, one who
believes in Capitalism as the "grand, unattainable ideal." Hate to
tell you this, Alf, but Capitalism's just short-term greed. Has its
points, but also has a lot of limitations. Short-sightedness, among
other things. Also, crudeness, and brutishness. Check out Adam
Smith's "The Wealth of Nations", the whole book, not just the one line
in it, at one place, about the "invisible hand" that's been quoted ad
infinitum. Adam Smith would have found you and Ayn Rand hysterically
funny. He said over and over that Capitalism had its limitations and
needed to be controlled.

Do specify these "ideal capitalist societies", when and where they
existed, how they functioned. I've never seen one. Sure, in the
first hundred years or so of the United States' existence there was so
much good, free land for the taking -- the Natives having been mostly
wiped out by European diseases -- that Greed, and Greed alone, was
sufficient to make a lot of people rich. This was a unique situation
that has perverted the American view of reality.

In reality, government controls and social organization are essential,
or we have disaster. Freedom is always relative.
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-13 06:28:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Alfred, you sound like an objectivist, a follower of Ayn Rand, one who
believes in Capitalism as the "grand, unattainable ideal."
She had her moments, both good and bad, some of her ideas are
reasonably accurate, however she never, and I have never held that
Capitalism was "unattainable", she used "the unknown ideal" in one of
her books, but clearly Capitalism is attainable, it has been many time
and for what it is worth, unlike socialism, the closer you are to
practicing it, the faster your economy grows *all else held equal*.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Hate to
tell you this, Alf, but Capitalism's just short-term greed.
Depends on what you mean by short term. I think you are a horse's
rear as far as that goes.

Rational self-interest is a good thing. Greed is poorly defined and
is generally used as a curse word.


Socialism is not in the rational self-interest of people who actually
work for a living, as it seeks to rob them to fund socialists, and
people who would vote for them.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Has its
points, but also has a lot of limitations. Short-sightedness, among
other things. Also, crudeness, and brutishness. Check out Adam
Smith's "The Wealth of Nations", the whole book, not just the one line
in it, at one place, about the "invisible hand" that's been quoted ad
infinitum. Adam Smith would have found you and Ayn Rand hysterically
funny. He said over and over that Capitalism had its limitations and
needed to be controlled.
Do specify these "ideal capitalist societies", when and where they
existed, how they functioned. I've never seen one. Sure, in the
first hundred years or so of the United States' existence there was so
much good, free land for the taking -- the Natives having been mostly
wiped out by European diseases -- that Greed, and Greed alone, was
sufficient to make a lot of people rich. This was a unique situation
that has perverted the American view of reality.
Yes, and the same was true for any of 20 odd nations in the New World,
none of them approach the Superpower status of the USA, and Brazil and
Canada have arguably more natural resources.

The ideals of the American revolution and specifically the ideal of
economic and political liberty made the USA the superpower it is
today.

The land grabbing and endless squabbling of petty nobles of Spain and
Portugal that controlled the New World from Mexico south, and to a
lesser extent the land grabbing and endless squabbling of petty
nobles of the UK and France controlled Canada.

In the USA on the other hand, merit and ability had much more (but not
100%) to do with gaining economic and political power, and it shows.
Post by Jerry Kraus
In reality, government controls and social organization are essential,
or we have disaster.
Stable, public (written & published) and objectively understandable
law that is not to onerous to commerce and the rational and effective
enforcement of it are needed for highly organized societies, whether
government does it or not is not really pertinent.

I do not agree that government is needed, I hold rather that this is
unproven, and the counter examples exist of societies that did not
have coercive (taxing/conscripting) governments, that were reasonably
nice places to live (when fairly compared to other nations of the same
technological era, I am thinking specifically of 9th-11th century
Iceland)
Post by Jerry Kraus
Freedom is always relative.
Yup, relative to whom is holding the proverbial gun.

Signature I normally have on my e-mails


"If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the
police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our
rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among
the outlaws."

Edward Abbey - Environmentalist/Writer (1927-1989)

Another Abbey quote:
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-13 16:01:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Stable, public (written & published) and objectively understandable
law that is not to onerous to commerce and the rational and effective
enforcement of it are needed for highly organized societies, whether
government does it or not is not really pertinent.
Christ, Alf, you are sounding a bit irrational here. Are you a bible-
thumper? Sounds like it. Jeez, who's going to enforce the law, who's
going to make the laws, if we have no government??? You're probably
one of those public school teachers who think all taxes should be
eliminated because they'd have more money to spend. Haven't quite
grasped that that's where their salaries come from!!
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Socialism is not in the rational self-interest of people who actually
work for a living, as it seeks to rob them to fund socialists, and
people who would vote for them.
"Socialism" is just social organization and control. Of any type.
It's a very flexible concept, and takes unlimited forms. Law is
socialism. Public courts are socialism. Public schools are
socialism. The military is highly socialistic -- ask anyone who's
been in it!

There's a very simple reason that the United States acquired more
wealth, more quickly, than Canada or Brazil. Canada's too cold,
Brazil's too hot. Both have been, and still are, to some extent,
uninhabitable. The U.S. is located on the largest, most temperate
area of the "New World". And land and farming were, and still are,
critical to the acquisition of wealth.

As to the "ideals" of the American Revolutionaries, the only thing, I
repeat the ONLY THING the Founding Fathers were interested in was
money. Absolutely nothing else. They were all rich as kings, other
than Benedict Arnold. That's why he sold out to the British. He
didn't fit in. The Americans revolted against the British because
they didn't need them to fight the French anymore, who'd been thrown
out of most of North America in 1762. They didn't want to pay a dime
in taxes, althought the British in Great Britain were taxed at twenty
times the rate of the Americans.
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-13 21:42:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Stable, public (written & published) and objectively understandable
law that is not to onerous to commerce and the rational and effective
enforcement of it are needed for highly organized societies, whether
government does it or not is not really pertinent.
Christ, Alf, you are sounding a bit irrational here. Are you a bible-
thumper?
Nope
Post by Jerry Kraus
Sounds like it. Jeez, who's going to enforce the law, who's
going to make the laws, if we have no government???
Example of a society that in fact existed with minimal government, (a
legislature, & courts thats it, no executive and no taxes (judges
collect fees for hearing a case from the losing side usually, appeals
are allowed up several steps to a supreme court).

Laws were enforced by private individuals, the legal system was geared
such that this worked quite well for all concerned.

Laws were made by a parliament with seats that were owned and bought
and sold as a commodity.


http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Academic/Iceland/Iceland.html

---------------quote
. . .medieval Icelandic institutions have several peculiar and
interesting characteristics; they might almost have been invented by a
mad economist to test the lengths to which market systems could
supplant government in its most fundamental functions. Killing was a
civil offense resulting in a fine paid to the survivors of the victim.
Laws were made by a "parliament," seats in which were a marketable
commodity. Enforcement of law was entirely a private affair. And yet
these extraordinary institutions survived for over three hundred
years, and the society in which they survived appears to have been in
many ways an attractive one . Its citizens were, by medieval
standards, free; differences in status based on rank or sex were
relatively small;[5] and its literary, output in relation to its size
has been compared, with some justice, to that of Athens.
--------------end quote
Post by Jerry Kraus
You're probably
one of those public school teachers who think all taxes should be
eliminated because they'd have more money to spend. Haven't quite
grasped that that's where their salaries come from!!
Sorry kid, no I am a working engineer who makes a six figure salary in
the oilfield.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Socialism is not in the rational self-interest of people who actually
work for a living, as it seeks to rob them to fund socialists, and
people who would vote for them.
"Socialism" is just social organization and control.
Social organization and control by people who did not earn the right
to that control, but used force, either via revolution or legislation.

Government force is still force.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Of any type.
It's a very flexible concept, and takes unlimited forms. Law is
socialism. Public courts are socialism. Public schools are
socialism. The military is highly socialistic -- ask anyone who's
been in it!
There's a very simple reason that the United States acquired more
wealth, more quickly, than Canada or Brazil. Canada's too cold,
Brazil's too hot.
Sour grapes.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-14 15:00:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Example of a society that in fact existed with minimal government, (a
legislature, & courts thats it, no executive and no taxes (judges
collect fees for hearing a case from the losing side usually, appeals
are allowed up several steps to a supreme court).
Laws were enforced by private individuals, the legal system was geared
such that this worked quite well for all concerned.
Laws were made by a parliament with seats that were owned and bought
and sold as a commodity.
http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Academic/Iceland/Iceland.html
---------------quote
. . .medieval Icelandic institutions have several peculiar and
interesting characteristics; they might almost have been invented by a
mad economist to test the lengths to which market systems could
supplant government in its most fundamental functions. Killing was a
civil offense resulting in a fine paid to the survivors of the victim.
Laws were made by a "parliament," seats in which were a marketable
commodity. Enforcement of law was entirely a private affair. And yet
these extraordinary institutions survived for over three hundred
years, and the society in which they survived appears to have been in
many ways an attractive one . Its citizens were, by medieval
standards, free; differences in status based on rank or sex were
relatively small;[5] and its literary, output in relation to its size
has been compared, with some justice, to that of Athens.
--------------end quote
Alf, the population of Iceland, NOW, is about 300,000. In the middle
ages, just after it was settled by the Norsemen, there probably were
only a few hundred people there. It was a village. It wasn't a
country. It was a few people, here and there, separated by huge
distances, in the middle of the ocean. Sure, if there's no one
around, anywhere, you don't need a government. Good point!
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
You're probably
one of those public school teachers who think all taxes should be
eliminated because they'd have more money to spend. Haven't quite
grasped that that's where their salaries come from!!
Sorry kid, no I am a working engineer who makes a six figure salary in
the oilfield.
Well, that DOES explain a few things. You're one of the people
profiting directly from the War in Iraq, from the "War on Terrorism",
from the military-industrial complex in general, and from killing and
destruction. What you call "working for a living".

You know, one of my pet peeves is why, over half a century after the
first H-bombs were exploded, controlled nuclear fusion hasn't been
developed. Free, unlimited, clean energy. Yet, no progress at all.
Any chance the oil industry has a vested interest in suppressing the
development of this alternative energy technology?
Naaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh!!!!
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Socialism is not in the rational self-interest of people who actually
work for a living, as it seeks to rob them to fund socialists, and
people who would vote for them.
"Socialism" is just social organization and control.
Social organization and control by people who did not earn the right
to that control, but used force, either via revolution or legislation.
Government force is still force.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Of any type.
It's a very flexible concept, and takes unlimited forms. Law is
socialism. Public courts are socialism. Public schools are
socialism. The military is highly socialistic -- ask anyone who's
been in it!
Yes, if people want to destroy and steal -- something I might be
slightly inclined the oil industry of doing -- force must be applied
to control them. Questions?
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
There's a very simple reason that the United States acquired more
wealth, more quickly, than Canada or Brazil. Canada's too cold,
Brazil's too hot.
Sour grapes.
Uh, yeah, right. Screw all losers, eh Alf?

Christ, no wonder you'd don't want a government. It would certainly
know what to do with someone like you!
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-15 06:51:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Example of a society that in fact existed with minimal government, (a
legislature, & courts thats it, no executive and no taxes (judges
collect fees for hearing a case from the losing side usually, appeals
are allowed up several steps to a supreme court).
Laws were enforced by private individuals, the legal system was geared
such that this worked quite well for all concerned.
Laws were made by a parliament with seats that were owned and bought
and sold as a commodity.
http://www.daviddfriedman.com/Academic/Iceland/Iceland.html
---------------quote
. . .medieval Icelandic institutions have several peculiar and
interesting characteristics; they might almost have been invented by a
mad economist to test the lengths to which market systems could
supplant government in its most fundamental functions. Killing was a
civil offense resulting in a fine paid to the survivors of the victim.
Laws were made by a "parliament," seats in which were a marketable
commodity. Enforcement of law was entirely a private affair. And yet
these extraordinary institutions survived for over three hundred
years, and the society in which they survived appears to have been in
many ways an attractive one . Its citizens were, by medieval
standards, free; differences in status based on rank or sex were
relatively small;[5] and its literary, output in relation to its size
has been compared, with some justice, to that of Athens.
--------------end quote
Alf, the population of Iceland, NOW, is about 300,000. In the middle
ages, just after it was settled by the Norsemen, there probably were
only a few hundred people there.
No, it was much larger than that it was in the tens of thousands by
the end of that period. So what.
Post by Jerry Kraus
It was a village. It wasn't a
country. It was a few people, here and there, separated by huge
distances, in the middle of the ocean. Sure, if there's no one
around, anywhere, you don't need a government. Good point!
They launched expeditions the the new world (Greenland and Vinland)
the colonies in Greenland got well over a thousand before in failed
much later due to climate change.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
You're probably
one of those public school teachers who think all taxes should be
eliminated because they'd have more money to spend. Haven't quite
grasped that that's where their salaries come from!!
Sorry kid, no I am a working engineer who makes a six figure salary in
the oilfield.
Well, that DOES explain a few things. You're one of the people
profiting directly from the War in Iraq, from the "War on Terrorism",
from the military-industrial complex in general, and from killing and
destruction. What you call "working for a living".
Nope, I don't design weapons or such I design offshore oilfield
equipment and as often as not my customers are middle-easterners,
Africans or Asians more than Americans or Europeans.

Offshore oil is more a way out of the violence than into it in that it
is not on somebodies country, and terrorist/guerrilla tactics do not
work so good where you have to shoot it out on the high seas with a
navy, no civilian population or trees or hills to hide behind.
Post by Jerry Kraus
You know, one of my pet peeves is why, over half a century after the
first H-bombs were exploded, controlled nuclear fusion hasn't been
developed. Free, unlimited, clean energy.
I have figured out a way to do it, make an H-bomb, set it off
underground making a cavern. Set off more in the cavern you make with
the first bomb and use existing geo-thermal equipment to get heat out
of it and turn turbines. Have a shaft to lower more bombs down and
set off in the cavern when the temperature drops far enough down.
Some technical details about sealing the cavern that I am omitting
more because you need drawings and probably a technical education to
understand it, but it is 100% doable project. The first bomb is much
larger in yield than the later ones and if you place the bombs right,
and do a good job with both your structural engineering and geology,
the later blasts will not collapse the cavern.

Even if they do, the radioactive materials are buried at the bottom of
a huge pile of rock rubble.

FYI caverns were made by the USA and USSR in that manner. Some were
quite huge.

http://www.elmada.com/wagon/WWS004Vvvv.htm



Also their is this:

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

It was being worked on by Dr.Robert W. Bussard who was a fusion
pioneer.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_W._Bussard#The_Polywell

It is in an interesting state of him having died recently claiming to
have his last set of experiments prove the Polywell design would work,
and that he was ready to build an operational fusion plant.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Yet, no progress at all.
Not so, see above, see also massive (many billions of US $) waste of
taxpayer money on BS fusion projects run by "scientists" not
businessmen or engineers. This below will give you an idea of the
quantities of money that have been squandered on "fusion research"
using the Tokamak design that back of the envelope calculations made
in the 1950's showed was at best a marginal concept.

http://www.ieee.org/organizations/pubs/newsletters/npss/0604/fusion.htm
Post by Jerry Kraus
Any chance the oil industry has a vested interest in suppressing the
development of this alternative energy technology?
Naaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh!!!!
The oil industry is not a monolithic group. If one set were able to
be A) bright enough to understand that for example Dr. Bussard's
Polywell design would actually work, and B) had the money and
political stroke to make it happen, they would dump a lot of money
into it and screw over everyone else in the oil industry over if they
could by making clean cheap energy, and let all other get run out of
business.

This conspiracy theory of yours that we all cooperate together and
protect each other from "clean" "Politically Correct" energy sources,
when we would normally be economically slitting each other's throats
left and right in regular oil field business competition, is a
fantasy, and a stupid one.

The oil industry is not one monolithic organization. It has many
players of all nationalities and many political philosophies. We
fight (politically) with each other all the damn time in more than one
nation at a time and sometimes one set will manipulate
environmentalists to hurt other sets. Example, the factions that
control Alaska north slope oil have been repeatedly attacked by the
mixed Saudi-American factions that export Saudi oil to Japan, as the
main market for Alaskan oil is Japan. The Saudi set has been
manipulating environmentalists with both propaganda and donations to
get them to be adamant against any drilling at all in the Alaskan
national wildlife refuge.

This sounds like a good thing for the environment, but not really in
the long term as what will happen is that at some point reduced flow
of oil out of the north slope fields will force the shutdown of the
trans-Alaska pipeline as it has a minimum economical flow. What
happens then is that you goto tankers that have to go through the
Bering straights, and are much more of a risk for massive oil spills
in the Arctic Ocean. All this so the Saudis can continue to be one of
the main suppliers to the Japanese rather than be beaten out by
shorter transport distances from Valdez to Japan than the Persian Gulf
to Japan.

The sounder policy would be to allow the drilling, but put strict
environmental rules on it with heavy fines for breaking the rules.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Socialism is not in the rational self-interest of people who actually
work for a living, as it seeks to rob them to fund socialists, and
people who would vote for them.
"Socialism" is just social organization and control.
Social organization and control by people who did not earn the right
to that control, but used force, either via revolution or legislation.
Government force is still force.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Of any type.
It's a very flexible concept, and takes unlimited forms. Law is
socialism. Public courts are socialism. Public schools are
socialism. The military is highly socialistic -- ask anyone who's
been in it!
Yes, if people want to destroy and steal -- something I might be
slightly inclined the oil industry of doing -- force must be applied
to control them. Questions?
That is horse shit. If anything the oil companies tend to be victims
of theft by socialists than steal things. Witness the theft of huge
oil fields paid for and developed by Exxon in Venezuela by the current
government of Venezuela.

Various Arab governments signed contracts with oil firms in the 1920's
and 1930's stipulating prices to be paid for oil if found by some oil
companies in Saudi and other places in the middle east and then
reneged on them, and ran the oilmen out of their country and left them
with nothing for all the effort to find and develop some of the
biggest fields ever found. The US and British governments let them do
it too.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Jerry Kraus
There's a very simple reason that the United States acquired more
wealth, more quickly, than Canada or Brazil. Canada's too cold,
Brazil's too hot.
Sour grapes.
Uh, yeah, right. Screw all losers, eh Alf?
Nope you are making excuses. Brazil had more natural resources than
the USA and is not "too hot", anymore than the US South is "too hot".
Malaria and other tropical illnesses were active in both places.

Screw thieves and moochers.

--------snip
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-15 14:22:36 UTC
Permalink
Deaths from 1921-1953 in USSR:

Executions: 900,000

Deaths in gulag: 1.2 million, but only 25% political prisoners, rest
common criminals: 300,000

Deaths of kulaks in collectivization: 390,000

Does not include deaths to population transfers in WW2 and possibly
German war prisoner deaths. Does not include Ukrainian famine, which
was NOT deliberate. Holodomor figures: 1.5 million.

All figures from new Soviet archives unveiling.

Totals: 1.59 million killed.

Stalin saved probably 35 million lives. All progress in life
expectancy ended in early 1960's. Czarism killed 3 X as many per
capita year and out as Stalinism. Return to capitalism killed 15
million Russians, and Communism killed only 1.6 million.
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-16 23:37:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Executions: 900,000
Deaths in gulag: 1.2 million, but only 25% political prisoners, rest
common criminals: 300,000
Deaths of kulaks in collectivization: 390,000
Does not include deaths to population transfers in WW2 and possibly
German war prisoner deaths. Does not include Ukrainian famine, which
was NOT deliberate. Holodomor figures: 1.5 million.
All figures from new Soviet archives unveiling.
Totals: 1.59 million killed.
Stalin saved probably 35 million lives. All progress in life
expectancy ended in early 1960's. Czarism killed 3 X as many per
capita year and out as Stalinism. Return to capitalism killed 15
million Russians, and Communism killed only 1.6 million.
Horse-fucking-shit you lying bastard.

The recently opened archives of the USSR and other places are showing
more like 25 million in the USSR, 65 million in China, 1.7 million in
Cambodia.

http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog/COUBLA.html

When The Black Book of Communism appeared in Europe in 1997 detailing
communism's crimes, it created a furor. Scrupulously documented and
soberly written by several historians, it is a masterful work. It is,
in fact, a reckoning. With this translation by Jonathan Murphy and
Mark Kramer, English-language readers may now see for themselves what
all the commotion was about.
--Jacob Heilbrunn, Wall Street Journal

The Black Book of Communism, which is finally appearing in English, is
an extraordinary and almost unspeakably chilling book. It is a major
study that deepens our understanding of communism and poses a
philosophical and political challenge that cannot be ignored. The
book's central argument, copiously documented and repeated in upwards
of a dozen different essays, is that the history of communism should
be read above all as the history of an all-out assault on society by a
series of conspiratorial cliques led by cruel dictators (Lenin,
Stalin, Mao Zedong, Kim II Sung, Pol Pot, and dozens of imitators) who
were murderously drunk on their own ideology and power...Courtois and
his collaborators have performed a signal service by gathering in one
volume a global history of communism's crimes from the Soviet Union to
China, from the satellite countries of Eastern-Europe to Vietnam,
Laos, Cambodia, and North Korea, and to a lesser degree in Latin
America and Africa...The Black Book is enormously impressive and
utterly convincing. --Michael Scammell, New Republic

To the extent that the book has a literary style, it is that of the
recording angel; this is the body count of a colossal, wholly failed
social, economic, political and psychological experiment. It is a
criminal indictment, and it rightly reads like one.
--Alan Ryan, New York Times Book Review

Most sensible adults are aware of communism's human toll in the Soviet
Union and elsewhere--the forced starvations in the Ukraine, the Great
Purge of the 1930s, the Gulag, the insanity of China's Great Cultural
Revolution, Pol Pot's murder of one in every seven Cambodians, Fidel
Castro's firing squads and prisons. All these horrors are now brought
together in what the French scholar Martin Mali, in his foreword,
calls a 'balance sheet of our current knowledge of communism's human
costs, archivally based where possible and elsewhere drawing on the
best available secondary evidence'...The book is all the more damning
because each of the contributing scholars is either a former communist
or close fellow traveler...That The Black Book infuriated the French
left is a sure mark of its intrinsic worth.
--Joseph C. Goulden, Washington Times

The authors of The Black Book of Communism are part of a welcome
change in the moral-philosophical landscape in Paris, and one hopes
elsewhere, as a result of which liberal and left-of-center
intellectuals, scholars and politicians judge the crimes of communist
regimes with the same severity they've applied to those of Nazism and
fascism.
--Jeffrey Herf, Washington Post Book World

Arguing with the passion of former believers, [the contributors]
charge that communism was a criminal system. They all make the case
well.
--Foreign Affairs

The Black Book of Communism] consists of scholarly yet readable (and
superbly translated) essays, some based on recently opened Soviet
archives, and covers the communist revolutions in Europe, Asia, Africa
and Latin America, including Cuba...The Black Book [is] a most
important volume of contemporary history produced by a group of French
Sovietologists...On finishing this magnificent volume, it is
impossible not to see that in three-quarters of a century Soviet
communism had left nothing behind except death and destruction.
--Arnold Beichman, Weekend Post

The above book is published by that well known bastion of conservatism
Harvard University and is a very well documented and researched
document written by European academics many of whom of whom grew up
under the communist system.

List of authors and credentials of them

--------list of authors

Stéphane Courtois is Director of Research at the Centre National de la
Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) in Paris, and editor of the journal
Communisme.

Nicolas Werth is a researcher at the Institute for Contemporary
History.

Jean-Louis Panné collaborated on the Dictionnaire biographique du
mouvement ouvrier français.

Andrzej Paczkowski is Deputy Director and a professor at the Institute
for Political Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences.

Karel Bartosek is acting head of research at CNRS and the editor of
the journal La nouvelle alternative.

Jean-Louis Margolin is a lecturer in history and coordinator of
lectures at the University of Provence and a researcher at the
Research Institute on Southeast Asia of CNRS

----------end list

Communism is about theft and mass murder, and always has been. The
fruit of the tree is how you know it. Communism, mass theft and mass
murder go hand in hand, and always have.

You sir are a lier and a monster and the full equal of a Nazi
Holocaust denier.

Further you are now killfiled
William Black
2008-03-17 11:23:26 UTC
Permalink
"Alfred Montestruc" <***@gmail.com> wrote in message news:19559554-37fc-4797-83f7-***@t54g2000hsg.googlegroups.com...

The Black Book of Communism, which is finally appearing in English, is
an extraordinary and almost unspeakably chilling book.

--------------------------------

And is also a proven pack of lies.
--
William Black


I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
Barbeques on fire by the chalets past the castle headland
I watched the gift shops glitter in the darkness off the Newborough gate
All these moments will be lost in time, like icecream on the beach
Time for tea.
Alfred Montestruc
2008-03-17 13:01:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alfred Montestruc
The Black Book of Communism, which is finally appearing in English, is
an extraordinary and almost unspeakably chilling book.
--------------------------------
And is also a proven pack of lies.
--
William Black
I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
Barbeques on fire by the chalets past the castle headland
I watched the gift shops glitter in the darkness off the Newborough gate
All these moments will be lost in time, like icecream on the beach
Time for tea.
kill filed
William Black
2008-03-17 14:43:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by Alfred Montestruc
Post by Alfred Montestruc
The Black Book of Communism, which is finally appearing in English, is
an extraordinary and almost unspeakably chilling book.
--------------------------------
And is also a proven pack of lies.
kill filed
Talk about a refusal to engage...

The level of fear in this post is palpable.
--
William Black


I've seen things you people wouldn't believe.
Barbeques on fire by the chalets past the castle headland
I watched the gift shops glitter in the darkness off the Newborough gate
All these moments will be lost in time, like icecream on the beach
Time for tea.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-17 15:02:44 UTC
Permalink
-
Further you are now killfiled-
I've noticed that Nazis like yourself have a taste for killing, Alf.

Time to shut the Oil Industry down, Alf.

Time to shut Nazis like yourself down, Alf.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-15 14:36:44 UTC
Permalink
The best that could possibly be said for your philosophy is that it is
Social Darwinism. And, that is the best. The worst is that it is
pure and simple thuggery. And, Social Darwinism didn't work out too
well for the Nazis, in the long run. Your system is currently
collapsing, as all economists have indicated. What you call
"stealing" is necessary and justifiable redistribution of wealth. You
lose.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-09 17:32:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
Person who would seriously advance this argument is either (a) crook
or (b) has not clue about situation in the SU or (c) needs medical
attention.
Gorby is a combination of (a) and (b) and anybody who takes him
seriously belongs to category (c). :-)
Afghan War became an 'internal disaster' for the SU simply because it
demonstrated that the system is totally rotten even in the (only) area
about which population still had some illusions and ...er... 'national
pride'. When it was demonstrated that the military are just as corrupt
and inefficient as the rest of the system, there was nothing left to
rally people around.
A notion that pre-Afghan SU was 'prosperous' is not even funny.
Goverment had to close Moscow to provide an illusion of an adequate
food supply during the Olympic Games of 1980 and situation was
deterriorating year by year. What would be a source of any kind of
prosperity is beyond me.
Stingers and other toys would not have any noticeable effect on the
situation in Afghanistan if 'the limited contingent' was not corrupt
from top to bottom: I strongly suspect that there was much more Soviet
weaponry sold to the rebels than anything CIA could possibly provide
them with. Army was a part of a system and was falling apart, just as
the rest of it.
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
You are not paying attention to what is written. The Stingers became a
crucial factor because the Soviet Army was falling apart with the
whole system.

Comparing to the losses in WWII those of Afghan War were negligible
but they were enough of a factor to push system over the brink. Does
it tell you something about the system?
Post by Jerry Kraus
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
You were talking about a stable and prosperous pre-Afghan <whatever>
Union. I have no clue what is your source of information but I used
to live in this 'prosperous' place until 1989. Of course, under the
Soviet regime most of the unpleasant information simply was not
published.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Sorry, where are you from and what is your personal experience in both
systems?
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more
As if there is something bad in being anti-Soviet...
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-09 20:29:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
Person who would seriously advance this argument is either (a) crook
or (b) has not clue about situation in the SU or (c) needs medical
attention.
Gorby is a combination of (a) and (b) and anybody who takes him
seriously belongs to category (c). :-)
Afghan War became an 'internal disaster' for the SU simply because it
demonstrated that the system is totally rotten even in the (only) area
about which population still had some illusions and ...er... 'national
pride'. When it was demonstrated that the military are just as corrupt
and inefficient as the rest of the system, there was nothing left to
rally people around.
A notion that pre-Afghan SU was 'prosperous' is not even funny.
Goverment had to close Moscow to provide an illusion of an adequate
food supply during the Olympic Games of 1980 and situation was
deterriorating year by year. What would be a source of any kind of
prosperity is beyond me.
Stingers and other toys would not have any noticeable effect on the
situation in Afghanistan if 'the limited contingent' was not corrupt
from top to bottom: I strongly suspect that there was much more Soviet
weaponry sold to the rebels than anything CIA could possibly provide
them with. Army was a part of a system and was falling apart, just as
the rest of it.
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
You are not paying attention to what is written. The Stingers became a
crucial factor because the Soviet Army was falling apart with the
whole system.
Comparing to the losses in WWII those of Afghan War were negligible
but they were enough of a factor to push system over the brink. Does
it tell you something about the system?
Post by Jerry Kraus
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
You were talking about a stable and prosperous pre-Afghan <whatever>
Union.  I have no clue what is your source of information but I used
to live in this 'prosperous' place until 1989. Of course, under the
Soviet regime most of the unpleasant information simply was not
published.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Sorry, where are you from and what is your personal experience in both
systems?
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more
As if there is something bad in being anti-Soviet...- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
The main complaint I generally receive from former residents of the
Soviet Union is NOT that basic social services were not provided, and
better than under the current system. The main complaint I hear is
that it was a highly controlled and oppressive system. Life
expectancy was higher, crime was lower, employment was more secure,
health care was more readily available, housing a food supplies were
gauranteed. Please, do provide YOUR statistics. To give a
straightforward contemporary example, life expectancy in Communist
Cuba is comparable to the United States, although it is a much poorer
country. And although Americans talk of the "reigh of terror" in that
country. And this statistic is not in dispute.


http://www.americablog.com/2007/08/us-41st-in-infant-mortality-worldwide.html
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-09 22:25:13 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by a***@hotmail.com
[]
Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan.
I strongly suspect that the attempts to match Reagan's "Star Wars"
program had been much more devastating for the Soviet economy. Afghan
War was a disaster mostly in the terms of prestige and common
illusions.
And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
Person who would seriously advance this argument is either (a) crook
or (b) has not clue about situation in the SU or (c) needs medical
attention.
Gorby is a combination of (a) and (b) and anybody who takes him
seriously belongs to category (c). :-)
Afghan War became an 'internal disaster' for the SU simply because it
demonstrated that the system is totally rotten even in the (only) area
about which population still had some illusions and ...er... 'national
pride'. When it was demonstrated that the military are just as corrupt
and inefficient as the rest of the system, there was nothing left to
rally people around.
A notion that pre-Afghan SU was 'prosperous' is not even funny.
Goverment had to close Moscow to provide an illusion of an adequate
food supply during the Olympic Games of 1980 and situation was
deterriorating year by year. What would be a source of any kind of
prosperity is beyond me.
Stingers and other toys would not have any noticeable effect on the
situation in Afghanistan if 'the limited contingent' was not corrupt
from top to bottom: I strongly suspect that there was much more Soviet
weaponry sold to the rebels than anything CIA could possibly provide
them with. Army was a part of a system and was falling apart, just as
the rest of it.
If you are seriously arguing that American Stinger missles were not a
critical -- perhaps THE critical element in bringing about the defeat
of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan -- then I suspect it is you, my
friend, who need medical attention!
You are not paying attention to what is written. The Stingers became a
crucial factor because the Soviet Army was falling apart with the
whole system.
Comparing to the losses in WWII those of Afghan War were negligible
but they were enough of a factor to push system over the brink. Does
it tell you something about the system?
Post by Jerry Kraus
As for the Soviet Union, despite the crippling effects of the Afghan
War, it wasn't till after the collapse of Communism that life
expectancy, standards of living and personal safety collapsed.
You were talking about a stable and prosperous pre-Afghan <whatever>
Union.  I have no clue what is your source of information but I used
to live in this 'prosperous' place until 1989. Of course, under the
Soviet regime most of the unpleasant information simply was not
published.
Post by Jerry Kraus
Communism provided an effective social safety net for the vast
majority of citizens, whether you like the idea or not.  Far better
than the corruption of American style Capitalism, that is for sure.
Sorry, where are you from and what is your personal experience in both
systems?
Post by Jerry Kraus
You are an anti-Soviet propagandist, nothing more
As if there is something bad in being anti-Soviet...- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
The main complaint I generally receive from former residents of the
Soviet Union is NOT that basic social services were not provided, and
better than under the current system.
 The main complaint I hear is
that it was a highly controlled and oppressive system.
 Life
expectancy was higher, crime was lower, employment was more secure,
health care was more readily available, housing a food supplies were
gauranteed.
 Please, do provide YOUR statistics.  To give a
straightforward contemporary example, life expectancy in Communist
Cuba is comparable to the United States, although it is a much poorer
country.  And although Americans talk of the "reigh of terror" in that
country.   And this statistic is not in dispute.
Sorry, but I do not discuss things with the deranged commies like you.
Happy wet dreams.
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-13 18:10:11 UTC
Permalink
On Mar 7, 1:13 pm, Jerry Kraus <***@yahoo.com> wrote:


Anyone curious enough and with access to the History Channel the "True
Story of Charlie Wilson's War" is on now and will run through 4pm EDT.
Anonymous Infidel - the anti-political talking head
2008-03-26 08:22:46 UTC
Permalink
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control
Soviet control, which would never have happened even without US
intervention, would never have brought stability...It would have
turned Afghanistan into a nuclear state and would have led to the
invasion of Iran, Iraq, etc.
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA
Well considering all those weapons from that war have been replaced
with better stuff from Iran and Pakistan....It would look the same.
[That's Islam for you]

Sid9
2008-03-07 17:24:40 UTC
Permalink
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
1. The Soviet Union would have collapsed
Their failed economic system was unsustainable.

2. Not much different from what occurred...except
perhaps the Muslim/ Christian unrest might not have happened.

3. The Taliban might not have gained ascendency in Afghanistan,
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-07 17:32:15 UTC
Permalink
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's?  Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
the "what if" scenario is interesting monday morning quarterbacking,
and the answer you are implying SEEMS true enough
the fear of losing another country to Communism drove U.S. policy
afghanistan subsequently devolved into religious totalitarianism,
absurdism, craziness, and ugly seeemingly futility today
Isn't this really a question about the more general sub-class
conflict, The Cold War, generally, the period of conflict, tension and
competition between the United States and the Soviet Union and their
respective allies from the mid-1940s until the early 1990s, a rivalry
military coalitions; ideology, psychology, and espionage; military,
industrial, and technological developments, including the space race;
costly defence spending; a massive conventional and nuclear arms race;
and many proxy wars.
That there was never a direct military engagement between the US and
the Soviet Union, but instead a half a century of military buildup as
well as political battles for support around the world, including
war that results when two powers use third parties as substitutes for
fighting each other directly; would unfairly blame prticular countries
for not only starting WWII but also perpetuating it.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cold_Warhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proxy_warhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_War_in_Afghanistan
Are you really hinting at how the CIA created Osama bin Laden?http://www.greenleft.org.au/2001/465/25199
Well, sure, I think the CIA clearly created Ossama Bin Laden. Is
there any question about that?

Your point seems to be that the Soviet Union was, by its very nature,
less resilient that the U.S., and was bound to fall apart under the
continuing pressures from competition with the U.S.
Rich Rostrom
2008-03-07 19:30:31 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Well, sure, I think the CIA clearly created Ossama Bin Laden. Is
there any question about that?
Well, Osama denies it, the CIA denies it,
and there are no records anywhere of direct
contact between the "Arab-Afghans" and the
CIA. Pakistani intelligence insisted on
controlling the delivery of arms to the
mujahideen. Furthermore, the whole point of
the Arab-Afghan group was that they had
their own money and weapons.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-07 19:55:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by Rich Rostrom
Well, sure, I think the CIA clearly created Ossama Bin Laden.  Is
there any question about that?
Well, Osama denies it, the CIA denies it,
and there are no records anywhere of direct
contact between the "Arab-Afghans" and the
CIA. Pakistani intelligence insisted on
controlling the delivery of arms to the
mujahideen. Furthermore, the whole point of
the Arab-Afghan group was that they had
their own money and weapons.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a  |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong    |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman                        |
This sounds like a bit of a shell game Osama and the CIA are playing.
Didn't the Pakastanis get their resources from the CIA, and didn't
they pass them on to the mujahideen? And, wasn't that the idea? And,
wasn't Osama working with the mujahideen? Obviously, at the moment,
the CIA and Osama are on opposite sides, so they don't wanto admit
that they ever helped each other, but isn't it clear that they did, at
least through intermediaries?
Ynot B. Dull
2008-03-08 02:38:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Rich Rostrom
Well, sure, I think the CIA clearly created Ossama Bin Laden. Is
there any question about that?
Well, Osama denies it, the CIA denies it,
and there are no records anywhere of direct
contact between the "Arab-Afghans" and the
CIA. Pakistani intelligence insisted on
controlling the delivery of arms to the
mujahideen. Furthermore, the whole point of
the Arab-Afghan group was that they had
their own money and weapons.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
This sounds like a bit of a shell game Osama and the CIA are playing.
Didn't the Pakastanis get their resources from the CIA, and didn't
they pass them on to the mujahideen? And, wasn't that the idea? And,
wasn't Osama working with the mujahideen? Obviously, at the moment,
the CIA and Osama are on opposite sides, so they don't wanto admit
that they ever helped each other, but isn't it clear that they did, at
least through intermediaries?

-------------------------

MOI:
The SAM's were Made in the USA, and provided by the USA, under the
Presidential approval of one Ronald Reagan.

I thought that would be pretty damn clear by 2008? <smile>

-----------------------

The Soviet war in Afghanistan, also known as the Soviet-Afghan War, was a
nine-year conflict involving Soviet forces supporting the Marxist People's
Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA) government against the Mujahideen
resistance. The latter group found support from a variety of sources
including the United States, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and other Muslim nations
in the context of the Cold War.

This conflict was concurrent to the 1979 Iranian Revolution and the
Iran-Iraq War.

The initial Soviet deployment of the 40th Army in Afghanistan began on
August 7, 1978. The final troop withdrawal began on May 15, 1988, and ended
on February 15, 1989. Due to the interminable and inconclusive nature of the
war, the conflict in Afghanistan has often been referred to as the Soviet
equivalent of the United States' Vietnam War.

Foreign involvement and aid to the Mujahideen

See also: Operation Cyclone
United States President Jimmy Carter had accepted the view that "Soviet
aggression" could not be viewed as an isolated event of limited geographical
importance but had to be contested as a potential threat to the Persian Gulf
region. The uncertain scope of the final objective of Moscow in its sudden
southward plunge made the American stake in an independent Pakistan all the
more important.

After the Soviet deployment, Pakistan's military ruler General Muhammad
Zia-ul-Haq started accepting financial aid from the Western powers to aid
the Mujahideen.[43]. In 1981, following the election of United States
President Ronald Reagan, aid for the Mujahideen through Zia's Pakistan
significantly increased, mostly due to the efforts of Texas Congressman
Charlie Wilson and CIA officer Gust Avrakotos.

The United States, the United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia became major
financial contributors, the United States donating "$600 million in aid per
year, with a matching amount coming from the Gulf states." [44] The People's
Republic of China also sold Type 56 (AKM) assault rifles and Type 69 RPGs to
Mujahideen in co-operation with the CIA, as did Egypt with assault rifles.
Of particular significance was the donation of American-made FIM-92 Stinger
anti-aircraft missile systems, which increased aircraft losses of the Soviet
Air Force.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_war_in_Afghanistan#Foreign_involvement_and_aid_to_the_Mujahideen

------------------------------------------------



Operation Cyclone was the code name for the United States Central
Intelligence Agency program to arm the Afghan mujahideen during the Soviet
war in Afghanistan, 1979 to 1989.[1]. The Program relied heavily on using
the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) as an intermediary for funds
distribution. Along with funding from similar programs from Britain's MI6
and SAS, Saudi Arabia and the People's Republic of China[citation needed],
the ISI armed and trained over 100,000 insurgents between 1978 and 1992.
Somewhere between $3-$20 billion in US funds were funneled into the country
to train and equip troops with weapons, including Stinger man-portable
air-defense systems.

On July 3, 1979, U.S. President Carter signed a presidential finding
authorizing funding for anticommunist guerrillas in Afghanistan.[2]
Following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and installation of a more
pro-Soviet president, Babrak Karmal, Carter announced "The Soviet invasion
of Afghanistan is the greatest threat to peace since the Second World
War".[3] American funding started with 20-30 million dollars per year in
1980 and rose to $630 million a year in 1987.[4]

The US government has been criticized for allowing Pakistan to channel a
disproportionate amount of its funding to controversial Afghan resistance
leader Gulbuddin Hekmatyar,[5] who Pakistani officials believed was "their
man".[6] Hekmatyar has been criticized for killing other mujahideen and
attacking civilian populations, including shelling Kabul with
American-supplied weapons, causing 2,000 casualties. Hekmatyar was said to
be friendly with Osama bin Laden, founder of al-Qaeda, who was running an
operation for assisting "Afghan Arab" volunteers fighting in Afghanistan,
called Maktab al-Khadamat (MAK). Alarmed by his behavior Pakistan leader
General Zia warned Hekmatyar that "It was Pakistan that made him an Afghan
leader and it is Pakistan who can equally destroy him if he continues to
misbehave".[7] According to a Newsweek article, in the late 1980s, Pakistani
Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto, concerned of the growing strength of the
Islamist movement, told President George H. W. Bush, "You are creating a
Frankenstein". Author Gilles Kepel reports that American funding of
Hekmatyar and his Hezbi Islami party was cut off immediately following the
withdrawal of the Soviets.[8]

The U.S. says all of its funds went to native Afghan rebels and denies that
any of its funds were used to supply Osama bin Laden or foreign Arab
mujahideen. It is estimated that 35,000 foreign Muslims from 43 Islamic
countries participated in the war.[9][10][11][12]

Sale of non-US arms to Pakistan for destination to Afghanistan was
facilitated by Israel.

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

-----------------------------------------

MOI:

Of course, Wiki, Osama bin Laden, or anyone else "could" be lying.

I don't know. But I do know that USA made SAM's hit Russian airplanes and
helicopters in Afghanistan, and the triggers were pulled by Afghani
resistance fighters.

The Russians called them "terrorists" and Republicans called them "freedom
fighters" of course. :)
Ynot B. Dull
2008-03-08 02:41:43 UTC
Permalink
PS

AFGHAN TRANSPORT PLANE DOWNED BY GUERRILLA FORCE WITH A MISSILE
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: February 10, 1987

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B0DE1DD143EF933A25751C0A961948260

Afghan guerrilla officials said here today that their men had shot down an
Afghan Government plane with a missile, killing all 43 people on board.

The guerrilla officials said the plane was an Afghan Army transport carrying
military men. But an Afghan Government broadcast said that the plane was
carrying civilians and that 30 people were killed, including women, children
and six crew members. The Government report was also disseminated by Tass,
the Soviet press agency.

Sources in Pakistan that follow the fighting in Afghanistan cast doubt on
the Afghan Government's identification of the casualties as civilian.

The downing of the plane was announced by the Yunis Khalis guerrilla group,
which identified it as a Soviet-made An-26 twin-engine turboprop transport
and said it had been shot down as it was taking off from Khost in Paktia
Province, near the Pakistani border, on a flight to Kabul.

Soviet and Afghan Government troops have been fighting the guerrillas in the
Khost area. Guerrillas Have Stinger Missiles

The guerrillas, whose arsenal includes American-made Stinger antiaircraft
missiles, said sympathizers in the Khost garrison had told them that 15
Afghan officers, 22 soldiers and six crew members were killed.

In Washington, American officials said the guerrillas had been making
effective use of the shoulder-fired Stinger missiles since last fall. The
officials said that in the last several months, the guerrillas had shot down
one fixed-wing plane or helicopter a day on the average.

The guerrilla officials said a missile crew hidden in the hills near the
Khost airstrip had hit the plane as it was climbing. They would not say what
kind of missile was used. Beside Stingers, the guerrillas also have
British-made Blowpipe missiles.
Post by Rich Rostrom
Well, sure, I think the CIA clearly created Ossama Bin Laden. Is
there any question about that?
Well, Osama denies it, the CIA denies it,
and there are no records anywhere of direct
contact between the "Arab-Afghans" and the
CIA. Pakistani intelligence insisted on
controlling the delivery of arms to the
mujahideen. Furthermore, the whole point of
the Arab-Afghan group was that they had
their own money and weapons.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
This sounds like a bit of a shell game Osama and the CIA are playing.
Didn't the Pakastanis get their resources from the CIA, and didn't
they pass them on to the mujahideen? And, wasn't that the idea? And,
wasn't Osama working with the mujahideen? Obviously, at the moment,
the CIA and Osama are on opposite sides, so they don't wanto admit
that they ever helped each other, but isn't it clear that they did, at
least through intermediaries?
Rich Rostrom
2008-03-08 04:40:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Rich Rostrom
Well, sure, I think the CIA clearly created Ossama Bin Laden.  Is
there any question about that?
Well, Osama denies it, the CIA denies it,
and there are no records anywhere of direct
contact between the "Arab-Afghans" and the
CIA. Pakistani intelligence insisted on
controlling the delivery of arms to the
mujahideen. Furthermore, the whole point of
the Arab-Afghan group was that they had
their own money and weapons.
This sounds like a bit of a shell game Osama and the CIA are playing.
Didn't the Pakastanis get their resources from the CIA, and didn't
they pass them on to the mujahideen? And, wasn't that the idea? And,
wasn't Osama working with the mujahideen? Obviously, at the moment,
the CIA and Osama are on opposite sides, so they don't wanto admit
that they ever helped each other, but isn't it clear that they did, at
least through intermediaries?
Osama and the US had goals in common at
one time, and it is possible that US
aid was directed to Osama by intermediaries
whom the US did not control.

But if Osama and the CIA never had any
direct contact, and Osama's "Arab-Afghan"
group had its own sources of money and
weapons, then how is it that "the CIA
created Osama"? That assertion is at most
a weak supposition, not an unquestioned fact.
--
| People say "There's a Stradivarius for sale for a |
| million," and you say "Oh, really? What's wrong |
| with it?" - Yitzhak Perlman |
Danimal
2008-03-11 21:12:39 UTC
Permalink
Well, sure, I think the CIA clearly created Ossama Bin Laden.  Is
there any question about that?
Very much so. According to Peter Bergen in "The Osama bin Laden I
Know," essentially all U.S. aid to the mujahedeen flowed to Gulbuddin
Hekmatyar. Hekmatyar led a Pashtun faction, not an Arab faction of
any kind, much less bin Laden's. From what I recall of Bergen,
Hekmatyar hated bin Laden's guts, and almost certainly fronted the
money and planning for the failed assassination attempt against bin
Laden in the Sudan during the 1990s.

As for the larger question, my gut feeling in that the lack of Redeye
and Stinger missiles would have increased mujahedeen casualties, but
not changed the outcome of the war. In theory, the Mi-24 Hind was
supposed to put a squad into action and then support it with gunfire;
in practice, however, ISTR that the Soviets used it just as a gunship
and very rarely as a troop carrier. In Vietnam, the VC and NVA had no
decent SAMs except over Hanoi and Haiphong, and U.S. helicopter losses
were very low; however, USA still couldn't beat them. The failure of
Operation Anaconda in the winter of 2001-02 shows even unlimited air
superiority doesn't always result in the destruction of an Afghan
guerrilla ground force. Ergo, my best guess is that lack of US help
pushes casualty ratios more in the Soviets' favor, but not enough for
them to win the war.

Will anybody else step in to help the mujahedeen in place of the
U.S.? Can't think of anyone; the mujahedeen don't have much ready
cash. Would France or Britain have helped them for ideological
reasons in lieu of money? I can't think of any case where those
governments helped anticommunist guerrillas for free.

The war is still hideously expensive for the Soviets, and world oil
prices are still in the toilet. With Reagan's arms buildup, the
Soviets are still not going to try to distract from internal problems
with an external war. Soviet Union breaks up on schedule.

Effects on Afghanistan? Gulbuddin Hekmatyar is much less of a player,
and is quite possibly dead, either at Soviet hands or those of his
rival mujahedeen. Ahmad Shah Massoud's Tajiks are correspondingly
stronger. I think one of the main effects is a stronger sense of
Muslim pride, mainly in Afghanistan but to some extent throughout the
Muslim world - the Afghans and their Arab allies can say that they
defeated the infidel Communists all by themselves, where the weak and
vacillating Western powers could not. This could be a major help to
Afghanistan, because both Muslim conservatives and those Muslim
leaders who want to stay on the good side of the Muslim conservatives
in the population may throw petrodollars into rebuilding Afghanistan,
the Heroic Resister of Infidel Aggression, rather than waiting in vain
for the USA to do so. Pakistan's ISI will still interfere, but they
won't have the Afghan field as much to themselves as in OTL.

But who gets the money? Unless Ahmad Shah Massoud can convince all
the Arab states to support him, I think civil war still occurs, very
probably wasting all the help from Muslim states.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-12 14:51:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by Danimal
The war is still hideously expensive for the Soviets, and world oil
prices are still in the toilet.  With Reagan's arms buildup, the
Soviets are still not going to try to distract from internal problems
with an external war.  Soviet Union breaks up on schedule.
Low oil prices were critical to the breakup of the Soviet Union, this
is correct. As the "resurgence" of Russia now is largely the result
of higher oil prices. And, as the very serious economic problems in
the U.S. at the moment are largely the result of high oil prices. All
this is saying is that oil prices, given the current economic
structure, are critical to national survival. It doesn't seem to
matter much what the economic system underlying a nation might be --
Communist, Capitalist, Socialist -- in terms of this particular fact.
a425couple
2008-03-07 18:24:59 UTC
Permalink
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
Specifically on,
1. The future of the Soviet Union.
2. The future of Eastern Europe.
3. The future of Afghanistan
4. The future of Islamic Extremism.
5. The future of the Islamic world, in general.
Mikhael Gorbachev still argues that Soviet Communism, under his
government was progressing in stages towards democratic socialism,
somewhat along the lines of the Swedish model, in accordance with the
principles of Marxist-Leninism. And that Ronald Regan -- or, perhaps,
his ambitious wife Nancy, given Regan's developing dementia -- used
American weapons such as the Stinger Missle to bankrupt the Soviet
Union in Afghanistan for no useful purpose.
One could argue that Gorbachev would have let the Berlin Wall fall in
any case. Gorbachev was still in power in 1989 when it came down, and
the Soviet Union intact, although, struggling from the devastating
effects of the War in Afghanistan. And, one could argue that a more
stable and prosperous "Russian Union" -- as was the case prior to the
Afghan War -- might have developed, instead of the crime and civil-war
ridden states currently in place in the former Soviet Union, despite
the supposed benefits of "Capitalism".
As for the Islamic World, what would it have been like without the
flood of weapons and training from the CIA resulting from the massive
American intervention in the Soviet-Afghan War in the 1980's? Could
Al-Qaeda have developed?
I'm not sure where this discussion has been
(before it showed up on ng I read),
but the above seems to step into the subject
in the middle. I think it is important
to understand some of the start.

Carter (POTUS 1977-81) had,
Secretary of State, Cyrus Vance (generally for diplomacy,
detante with USSR)
National Security Advisor, Zbigniew Brzeninski (generally
much more confrontational).
Afganistan was not stable nor 'good'. Vance wanted
cooperation. Brezenski saw a chance to confront and
hurt USSR. Carter finally stopped vacilating and went
with B.'s plan - quit talking to USSR, let them step in.
And on 24 December 1979 they started.
From the start Carter authorized covert support for
the Afgan resistance, CIA, DDO, thru proxies
and nearby countries, Pakistan, Egypt, Iran--, and China.
These, by necessity, had to deal with the realities
that already existed with those on the ground
(questionable allies are always a double edged sword).
The first Redeye SAMs arrived in late 1980.
Pakistan tilted most aid to the fundamentalists
(had been plenty of more mainline "organizations").

Line of events to 9/11 and WOT.
w***@ireland.com
2008-03-08 00:33:52 UTC
Permalink
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?

WB Yeats
Ynot B. Dull
2008-03-08 03:04:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda. What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?
WB Yeats
FROM 1996 http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/9610/05/taleban/

Who are the Taliban of Afghanistan?

October 5, 1996
Web posted at: 10:45 p.m. EDT (0245 GMT)
From Correspondent Anita Pratap

KABUL, Afghanistan (CNN) -- From students to conquerors, the Taliban Islamic
militia have come a long way, and fast.

In just two years, the Taliban have captured more than two-thirds of
Afghanistan from the Mujahedeen warriors who had fought Soviet occupation.
The Taliban's success has much to do with the unpopularity of the Mujahedeen
in recent years.

The Taliban emerged as a reformist force -- honest, fierce and devoutly
Islamic. Most had gone as refugees to Pakistan, where they studied in the
religious schools. The Taliban are widely alleged to be the creation of
Pakistan's military intelligence. Experts say that explains the Taliban's
swift military successes.

They emerged as the new rulers of this war-ravaged nation when they captured
the Afghan capital, Kabul, last month.

Kabul is important because of its strategic location. It is the gateway to
the Indian subcontinent to the south and to central Asian republics to the
north.

Through history, many groups have invaded Kabul, and the latest conquerors,
the Taliban, are set to leave their stamp on the city by imposing a
fundamentalist regime guided by their own interpretation of Islamic law.

They decree amputations and executions for criminals, and impose severe
restrictions on women. They also have banned television, which they see as a
symbol of Western decadence.

Not much is known about the 35-year-old founder of the Taliban, Mullah
Mohammad Umar, a cleric who fought as a Mujahedeen. But his political aims
are clear: He is determined to create his version of an Islamic Afghanistan.

http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/9610/05/taleban/

-------------------------------------------

Afghan rebels seize capital, hang former president
September 27, 1996
Web posted at: 11:00 a.m. EDT (1500 GMT)

KABUL, Afghanistan (CNN) -- Afghanistan's Taliban militia seized control of
Kabul Friday soon after government forces abandoned the shattered Afghan
capital. In its first action, the Islamic militant group hanged former
President Najibullah and his brother from a tower.

One of the Taliban militia's top leaders in Kabul, Mullah Mohammad Rabbani,
said Najibullah deserved his fate.

"He killed so many Islamic people and was against Islam and his crimes were
so obvious that it had to happen. He was a communist," Rabbani told a news
conference in the presidential palace.

All key government installations appeared to be in Taliban's hands within
hours, including the presidential palace and the ministries of defense,
security and foreign affairs. No government forces were visible on the
city's streets.

The Taliban takeover marks the third time in four years a faction has seized
power. The action followed two days of fighting on the eastern edge of the
capital that left hundreds dead, Red Cross officials said.

Rebels kill 'murderer of our people'


Crowds of Afghans cheered at the sight of Najibullah's beaten and bloated
body hanging outside the presidential palace. The war-weary residents were
apparently hopeful that Friday's takeover would end factional fighting.
Najibullah's communist regime was overthrown in 1992.

"We killed him because he was the murderer of our people," Noor Hakmal, a
Taliban commander, said.

Dangling next to Najibullah was his brother, former security chief Shahpur
Ahmedzi.

The Taliban, which began as a movement of former Islamic seminary students,
now controls two-thirds of the country. The rebels want to impose their
strict version Islamic rule in Afghanistan -- which includes keeping women
mostly in the home, closing girls' schools and imposing harsh criminal
punishments.

The executions capped the victory of Taliban rebels, who have fought to oust
the regime of Najibullah's successor, President Burhanuddin Rabbani (no
relation to the Taliban leader).

The whereabouts of Rabbani and his top commander, Ahmed Shah Masood, were
not known. However, Afghan diplomats loyal to the Rabbani government told
CNN that the government was relocating at the airbase at Baghram, just north
of Kabul, and will mount a counteroffensive as soon as possible to recapture
the city.

more http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/9609/27/afghan.rebels/index.html

-----------------------------------------------

NEWSMAKER:
PRESIDENT CLINTON

His Chances for Re-election
SEPTEMBER 23, 1996
In this exclusive interview with Jim Lehrer, President Clinton discusses
Whitewater, how he defines himself against Bob Dole, his move to the
political center, the Dick Morris affair and his signing of the welfare
reform bill. Jim Lehrer opened the interview with a question about the
November election and the President's double digit lead.

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/election/september96/clinton1_9-23.html

---------------------------------------

Context of 'September 27, 1996: Victorious Taliban Supported by Pakistan;
Viewed by US, Unocal as Stabilizing Force'
This is a scalable context timeline. It contains events related to the event
September 27, 1996: Victorious Taliban Supported by Pakistan; Viewed by US,
Unocal as Stabilizing Force. You can narrow or broaden the context of this
timeline by adjusting the zoom level. The lower the scale, the more relevant
the items on average will be, while the higher the scale, the less relevant
the items, on average, will be.

from : http://www.cooperativeresearch.org/context.jsp?item=a092796kabul

----------

1995-2001: Persian Gulf Elite Go Hunting with Bin Laden in Afghanistan

May 1996: US Seeks Stability in Afghanistan for Unocal Pipeline
Robin Raphel, Deputy Secretary of State for South Asia, speaks to the
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister about Afghanistan. She says that the US
government "now hopes that peace in the region will facilitate US business
interests," such as the proposed Unocal gas pipeline from Turkmenistan
through Afghanistan to Pakistan.


After May 18, 1996-September 1996: Bin Laden Quickly Alligns With the
Taliban After Arrival in Afghanistan

Bin Laden arrives in Afghanistan on May 18, 1996 after being expelled from
Sudan (see May 18, 1996). Initially, bin Laden stays in an area not
controlled by the Taliban, who are fighting for control of the country. But
by the end of September 1996, the Taliban conquer the capital of Kabul and
gain control over most of the the country (see September 27, 1996). Bin
Laden then becomes the guest of the Taliban. The Taliban, bin Laden, and
their mutual ally Gulbuddin Hekmatyar then call for a jihad against Ahmed
Shah Massoud, who retains control over a small area along Afghanistan's
northern border. As bin Laden establishes a new safe base and political
ties, he issues a public fatwa, or religious decree, authorizing attacks on
Western military targets in the Arabian Peninsula (see August 1996).

Mid-1996-October 2001: Ariana Airlines Becomes Transport Arm of Al-Qaeda

August 1996: Bin Laden Calls for Attack on Western Targets in Arabia

September 27, 1996: Victorious Taliban Supported by Pakistan; Viewed by US,
Unocal as Stabilizing Force

September 30, 1996: CIA Reports Taliban Are Keeping Bin Laden's Training
Camps Open, Closing Some Other Camps

Late 1996: Bin Laden Influences Election in Pakistan

Not long after bin Laden moves back to Afghanistan (see After May 18,
1996-September 1996), he tries to influence an election in Pakistan. Benazir
Bhutto, Prime Minister of Pakistan, is running for reelection against Nawaz
Sharif, who had been prime minister earlier in the 1990s. (Bin Laden
apparently helped Sharif win in 1990 (see October 1990).) "According to
Pakistani and British intelligence sources, bin Laden traveled into Pakistan
to renew old acquaintances within the ISI, and also allegedly met or talked
with" Sharif. Sharif wins the election. Bhutto will later claim that bin
Laden used a variety of means to ensure her defeat and undermine her. She
will mention one instance where bin Laden allegedly gave $10 million to some
of her opponents. Journalist Simon Reeve will later point out that while
Bhutto claims could seem self-serving, "her claims are supported by other
Pakistani and Western intelligence sources."



Late 1996: ISI Returns Afghanistan Training Camps to Bin Laden and
Subsidizes Their Costs

When bin Laden moved from Sudan to Afghanistan (see May 18, 1996), he was
forced to leave most of his personal fortune behind. Additionally, most of
his training camps were in Sudan and those camps had to be left behind as
well. But after the Taliban conquers most of Afghanistan and forms an
alliance with bin Laden (see After May 18, 1996-September 1996), the
Pakistani ISI persuades the Taliban to return to bin Laden the Afghanistan
training camps that he controlled in the early 1990s before his move to
Sudan. The ISI subsidizes the cost of the camps, allowing bin Laden to
profit from the fees paid by those attending them. The ISI also uses the
camps to train militants who want to fight against Indian forces in Kashmir.
[Wright, 2006, pp. 250] In 2001, a Defense Intelligence Agency agent will
write about the al-Badr II camp at Zhawar Kili. "Positioned on the border
between Afghanistan and Pakistan, it was built by Pakistan contractors
funded by the Pakistan Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate (ISI), and
protected under the patronage of a local and influential Jadran tribal
leader, Jalalludin ((Haqani))," the agent writes. "However, the real host in
that facility was the Pakistani ISI. If this was later to be bin Laden's
base, then serious questions are raised by the early relationship between
bin Laden and Pakistan's ISI."

------------------------

THE CLINCHER ?????

October 1998: Military Analyst Goes Where Spies Fail to Go, but Her Efforts
Are Rejected

Julie Sirrs, a military analyst for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA),
travels to Afghanistan. Fluent in local languages and knowledgeable about
the culture, she had made a previous undercover trip there in October 1997.
She is surprised that the CIA was not interested in sending in agents after
the failed missile attack on bin Laden in August 1998, so she returns at
this time.

Traveling undercover, she meets with Northern Alliance leader Ahmed Shah
Massoud. She sees a terrorist training center in Taliban-controlled
territory. Sirrs claims, "The Taliban's brutal regime was being kept in
power significantly by bin Laden's money, plus the narcotics trade, while
[Massoud's] resistance was surviving on a shoestring. With even a little aid
to the Afghan resistance, we could have pushed the Taliban out of power. But
there was great reluctance by the State Department and the CIA to undertake
that."

She partly blames the interest of the US government and the oil company
Unocal to see the Taliban achieve political stability to enable a
trans-Afghanistan pipeline (see May 1996) (see September 27, 1996). She
claims, "Massoud told me he had proof that Unocal had provided money that
helped the Taliban take Kabul." She also states, "The State Department didn't
want to have anything to do with Afghan resistance, or even, politically, to
reveal that there was any viable option to the Taliban." After two weeks,
she returns with a treasure trove of maps, photographs, and interviews. [ABC
News, 2/18/2002; New York Observer, 3/11/2004]

By interviewing captured al-Qaeda operatives, she learns that the official
Afghanistan airline, Ariana Airlines, is being used to ferry weapons and
drugs, and learns that bin Laden goes hunting with "rich Saudis and top
Taliban officials" (see Mid-1996-October 2001) (see 1995-2001).

---------------------------------------------------------

ALL ABOVE [and more ] NOTED FROM
http://www.cooperativeresearch.org/context.jsp?item=a092796kabul
Ynot B. Dull
2008-03-08 03:23:55 UTC
Permalink
PS re Clinton re-election
Post by Ynot B. Dull
-----------------------------------------------
PRESIDENT CLINTON
His Chances for Re-election
SEPTEMBER 23, 1996
In this exclusive interview with Jim Lehrer, President Clinton discusses
Whitewater, how he defines himself against Bob Dole, his move to the
political center, the Dick Morris affair and his signing of the welfare
reform bill. Jim Lehrer opened the interview with a question about the
November election and the President's double digit lead.
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/election/september96/clinton1_9-23.html
No mention during the interview of Osama, Al queda, Taliban, Afghanistan, or
Terrorist/ism, middle east, or oil.
w***@ireland.com
2008-03-08 15:09:53 UTC
Permalink
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 14:23:55 +1100, "Ynot B. Dull"
Post by Ynot B. Dull
PS re Clinton re-election
Post by Ynot B. Dull
-----------------------------------------------
PRESIDENT CLINTON
His Chances for Re-election
SEPTEMBER 23, 1996
In this exclusive interview with Jim Lehrer, President Clinton discusses
Whitewater, how he defines himself against Bob Dole, his move to the
political center, the Dick Morris affair and his signing of the welfare
reform bill. Jim Lehrer opened the interview with a question about the
November election and the President's double digit lead.
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/election/september96/clinton1_9-23.html
No mention during the interview of Osama, Al queda, Taliban, Afghanistan, or
Terrorist/ism, middle east, or oil.
And you point(s) is/are?

WB Yeats
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-08 20:03:38 UTC
Permalink
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?
WB Yeats
Interesting perspective. But, did we really want to stay there after
the Russians left? Would we have been any better at controlling
things than they were? We aren't now. Alexander the Great couldn't
handle them, nor has anyone, really, since! Probably not too good an
idea to give them real cool weapons and training, though.
w***@ireland.com
2008-03-08 20:23:20 UTC
Permalink
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 12:03:38 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?
WB Yeats
Interesting perspective. But, did we really want to stay there after
the Russians left? Would we have been any better at controlling
things than they were? We aren't now. Alexander the Great couldn't
handle them, nor has anyone, really, since! Probably not too good an
idea to give them real cool weapons and training, though.
Umm..... like we're doing at present? And where did I say anything
about an occupation - just a rebuilding process. It was sort of like
pay me now or pay me later. But as I said there was no national will
to do this as our fearless leaders seem to follow rather than lead. A
vacuum occurred and presto - instant Taliban.

WB Yeats
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-08 21:02:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 12:03:38 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?
WB Yeats
Interesting perspective.  But, did we really want to stay there after
the Russians left?  Would we have been any better at controlling
things than they were?  We aren't now.  Alexander the Great couldn't
handle them, nor has anyone, really, since!  Probably not too good an
idea to give them real cool weapons and training, though.
Umm..... like we're doing at present? And where did I say anything
about an occupation - just a rebuilding process. It was sort of like
pay me now or pay me later. But as I said there was no national will
to do this as our fearless leaders seem to follow rather than lead. A
vacuum occurred and presto - instant Taliban.
WB Yeats- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Ummm...how do you rebuild a violently unstable country without
occupying it? You seem to be one of those Capitalist nuts who think
that all you have to do to create peace in a war-torn country is have
a written contract with dollars on it. No wonder we just handed over
Iraq to the Iranians, and the Iranian President is currently visiting
"New Tehran" under the eyes of our impotent occupying American forces.
w***@ireland.com
2008-03-08 23:02:22 UTC
Permalink
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 13:02:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 12:03:38 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?
WB Yeats
Interesting perspective.  But, did we really want to stay there after
the Russians left?  Would we have been any better at controlling
things than they were?  We aren't now.  Alexander the Great couldn't
handle them, nor has anyone, really, since!  Probably not too good an
idea to give them real cool weapons and training, though.
Umm..... like we're doing at present? And where did I say anything
about an occupation - just a rebuilding process. It was sort of like
pay me now or pay me later. But as I said there was no national will
to do this as our fearless leaders seem to follow rather than lead. A
vacuum occurred and presto - instant Taliban.
WB Yeats- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Ummm...how do you rebuild a violently unstable country without
occupying it? You seem to be one of those Capitalist nuts who think
that all you have to do to create peace in a war-torn country is have
a written contract with dollars on it. No wonder we just handed over
Iraq to the Iranians, and the Iranian President is currently visiting
"New Tehran" under the eyes of our impotent occupying American forces.
Trying to leap over the Grand Canyon? It's an investment in the future
of the country and this country. It's good business. It makes perfect
sense - the military is not a necessary accessory. Somebody's gotta do
it or you get ............. 9/11. But to just walk away makes no
sense.

WB Yeats
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-09 20:19:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 13:02:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 12:03:38 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?
WB Yeats
Interesting perspective.  But, did we really want to stay there after
the Russians left?  Would we have been any better at controlling
things than they were?  We aren't now.  Alexander the Great couldn't
handle them, nor has anyone, really, since!  Probably not too good an
idea to give them real cool weapons and training, though.
Umm..... like we're doing at present? And where did I say anything
about an occupation - just a rebuilding process. It was sort of like
pay me now or pay me later. But as I said there was no national will
to do this as our fearless leaders seem to follow rather than lead. A
vacuum occurred and presto - instant Taliban.
WB Yeats- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Ummm...how do you rebuild a violently unstable country without
occupying it?  You seem to be one of those Capitalist nuts who think
that all you have to do to create peace in a war-torn country is have
a written contract with dollars on it.  No wonder we just handed over
Iraq to the Iranians, and the Iranian President is currently visiting
"New Tehran" under the eyes of our impotent occupying American forces.
Trying to leap over the Grand Canyon? It's an investment in the future
of the country and this country. It's good business. It makes perfect
sense - the military is not a necessary accessory. Somebody's gotta do
it or you get ............. 9/11. But to just walk away makes no
sense.
WB Yeats- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Well, why not just invest in Alpha Centauri properties? After all,
somebody's gotta do it. It's an investment in the future. It's good
business. It makes perfect sense -- an interstellar drive is not a
necessary accessory.
w***@ireland.com
2008-03-09 21:43:00 UTC
Permalink
On Sun, 9 Mar 2008 13:19:21 -0700 (PDT), Jerry Kraus
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 13:02:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Sat, 8 Mar 2008 12:03:38 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
Post by w***@ireland.com
On Fri, 7 Mar 2008 09:10:29 -0800 (PST), Jerry Kraus
The American Government, deciding that instability in Afghanistan is
more dangerous than Soviet control there, decides against supporting
the Afghan Rebels -- the future basis both for the Taliban and for Al-
Qaeda.  What would have been the consequences of the American
This might not be to point but the problem is that the US left
Afghanistan without a government once the Russians were tossed out.
WHAT IF the US had stayed, built roads and schools, rebuilt the Afghan
army, etc; There was no Congressional or Presidential will to do this
and so we once again got bit in the ass by our own shortsightedness.
Read Charlie Wilson's War - the movie was silly but the book is dead
on. The Taliban would never have happened. Who knows about Al Qaeda?
WB Yeats
Interesting perspective.  But, did we really want to stay there after
the Russians left?  Would we have been any better at controlling
things than they were?  We aren't now.  Alexander the Great couldn't
handle them, nor has anyone, really, since!  Probably not too good an
idea to give them real cool weapons and training, though.
Umm..... like we're doing at present? And where did I say anything
about an occupation - just a rebuilding process. It was sort of like
pay me now or pay me later. But as I said there was no national will
to do this as our fearless leaders seem to follow rather than lead. A
vacuum occurred and presto - instant Taliban.
WB Yeats- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Ummm...how do you rebuild a violently unstable country without
occupying it?  You seem to be one of those Capitalist nuts who think
that all you have to do to create peace in a war-torn country is have
a written contract with dollars on it.  No wonder we just handed over
Iraq to the Iranians, and the Iranian President is currently visiting
"New Tehran" under the eyes of our impotent occupying American forces.
Trying to leap over the Grand Canyon? It's an investment in the future
of the country and this country. It's good business. It makes perfect
sense - the military is not a necessary accessory. Somebody's gotta do
it or you get ............. 9/11. But to just walk away makes no
sense.
WB Yeats- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Well, why not just invest in Alpha Centauri properties? After all,
somebody's gotta do it. It's an investment in the future. It's good
business. It makes perfect sense -- an interstellar drive is not a
necessary accessory.
Nature abhors a vacuum - whether it be one in a country the US helped
destabilize and leave, or the one between your ears. The early lesson
not learned was repeated in Afghanistan again and then in Iraq. You
don't wreck something without having some kind of idea about putting
in back together again. You remember Humpty-Dumpty?

WB Yeats
Robert Savage
2008-03-17 21:28:25 UTC
Permalink
{Lots of snippage}

Keeping this in WI land. If US doesn't support "Mujahadeen" at all
(whether directly, indirectly, or via parcel post...)what happens?

Does that lead to a Soviet "victory?" As pointed out by the original
poster, Afghanistan has been notoriously hard to conquer.

I'm guessing that the expected fallout is no Taliban = no 9/11/01 for
USA etc.

It gets more interesting then if the Taliban run country was the
'breeding ground' for the extra national militancy we see (Qaida) does
this phenomenon still happen?

If bin Laden started out in Saudi, and ventured to Afghanistan for its
'fertile ground,' does this fertile ground exist if the Soviets are
successful in killing enough Afghans to keep the central government in
power. (I've read a few articles that suggeset the incompetence
of the central government, from Moscow's standpoint, regardless.)

Or at least provide enough security to preclude an extra-national
movement such as Qaida. Or does some other movement/group develop,
somewhere else?

Presumably the impact on the cold war is negligible, and the USSR
continues to spend itself out of existence.

There was then much heated discussion on the fate of the USSR, and
whether or not the defeat in Afghanistan contributed, etc.

I don't necessarily think that Afghanistan directly caused the collapse
of teh USSR, IMO the super power arms race is first and foremost
responsible for that.

(As to the digression into the long term survivability of the USSR which
further digressed in to philosophical rants and insults re: communism
"vs" capitalism... )My $0.02 for said rants; the following facts are
oftern ignored or overlooked:

1. USA/NATO industrialized late 19th century, on average at least a half
century before USSR/Warsaw Pact

2. Russian Empire soundly defeated by Germany in World War I, then sank
into civil war.

(Compare Russia to Germany 1914....)

3. USSR and Poland sustained heaviest casualties of any power in World
War II, and arguably the worst fighting in Europe was on Eastern Front.

4. Warsaw Pact consisting of mostly parts of former Russian Empire, see
point 1 above.

5. USSR diverted 4-5x as much of GDP toward "defense" than USA. That
fact alone, regardless of 'system' is destabilizing.

In short, USSR starting out at a disadvantage in this competition with
the West. After the Marshal Plan era, the USA did not have to subsidize
its allies to any degree comparable to the USSR. If you look at this in
terms of who was on either side:

USA could rely on the advanced economies of

Britain
W. Germany
Japan
to some extent France and the rest of NATO

I don't think you can compare NATO to WP, especially considering the
ecnomic development of NATO countries was gradual over, in some
instances, several centuries, as compared to an artifical construct
begun much later in the "former Russian empire."

IMO The only way for the USSR to survive was to end the cold war, and
stop trying to compete economically with a country that had a head start
to begin with. Otherwise the finish is pre-ordained. IMO Reagan
deliberate set out to see who would go bankrupt first, gambling (with a
relatively safe bet given the history above) that the USSR would.
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-17 22:27:38 UTC
Permalink
Post by Robert Savage
4. Warsaw Pact consisting of mostly parts of former Russian Empire,
Except for East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania,
Albania and big part of Poland. :-)
Robert Savage
2008-03-17 22:48:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Robert Savage
4. Warsaw Pact consisting of mostly parts of former Russian Empire,
Except for East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania,
Albania and big part of Poland. :-)
replace "mostly" with "many."

:-)
a***@hotmail.com
2008-03-18 13:01:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by Robert Savage
Post by a***@hotmail.com
Post by Robert Savage
4. Warsaw Pact consisting of mostly parts of former Russian Empire,
Except for East Germany, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania,
Albania and big part of Poland. :-)
replace "mostly" with "many."
:-)
To think about it, "mostly" will do just fine because MOST of the
Warsaw Pact in the terms of a territory, military power, etc. WAS a
former Russian Empire . :-)
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-17 22:30:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Robert Savage
{Lots of snippage}
Keeping this in WI land. If US doesn't support "Mujahadeen" at all
(whether directly, indirectly, or via parcel post...)what happens?
Does that lead to a Soviet "victory?" As pointed out by the original
poster, Afghanistan has been notoriously hard to conquer.
I'm guessing that the expected fallout is no Taliban = no 9/11/01 for
USA etc.
It gets more interesting then if the Taliban run country was the
'breeding ground' for the extra national militancy we see (Qaida) does
this phenomenon still happen?
If bin Laden started out in Saudi, and ventured to Afghanistan for its
'fertile ground,' does this fertile ground exist if the Soviets are
successful in killing enough Afghans to keep the central government in
power. (I've read a few articles that suggeset the incompetence
of the central government, from Moscow's standpoint, regardless.)
Or at least provide enough security to preclude an extra-national
movement such as Qaida. Or does some other movement/group develop,
somewhere else?
Presumably the impact on the cold war is negligible, and the USSR
continues to spend itself out of existence.
There was then much heated discussion on the fate of the USSR, and
whether or not the defeat in Afghanistan contributed, etc.
I don't necessarily think that Afghanistan directly caused the collapse
of teh USSR, IMO the super power arms race is first and foremost
responsible for that.
(As to the digression into the long term survivability of the USSR which
further digressed in to philosophical rants and insults re: communism
"vs" capitalism... )My $0.02 for said rants; the following facts are
1. USA/NATO industrialized late 19th century, on average at least a half
century before USSR/Warsaw Pact
2. Russian Empire soundly defeated by Germany in World War I, then sank
into civil war.
(Compare Russia to Germany 1914....)
3. USSR and Poland sustained heaviest casualties of any power in World
War II, and arguably the worst fighting in Europe was on Eastern Front.
4. Warsaw Pact consisting of mostly parts of former Russian Empire, see
point 1 above.
5. USSR diverted 4-5x as much of GDP toward "defense" than USA. That
fact alone, regardless of 'system' is destabilizing.
In short, USSR starting out at a disadvantage in this competition with
the West. After the Marshal Plan era, the USA did not have to subsidize
its allies to any degree comparable to the USSR. If you look at this in
USA could rely on the advanced economies of
Britain
W. Germany
Japan
to some extent France and the rest of NATO
I don't think you can compare NATO to WP, especially considering the
ecnomic development of NATO countries was gradual over, in some
instances, several centuries, as compared to an artifical construct
begun much later in the "former Russian empire."
IMO The only way for the USSR to survive was to end the cold war, and
stop trying to compete economically with a country that had a head start
to begin with. Otherwise the finish is pre-ordained. IMO Reagan
deliberate set out to see who would go bankrupt first, gambling (with a
relatively safe bet given the history above) that the USSR would.
Osama bin Laden's main interest was religion, where he was involved in
both "interpreting the Quran and jihad" and charitable work.

Like other Islamists and Islamic fundamentalists, Bin Laden believes
that the restoration of Sharia law will set things right in the Muslim
world, and that all other ideologies--"pan-Arabism, socialism,
communism, democracy"--must be opposed. He believed Afghanistan under
the rule of Mullah Omar's Taliban was "the only Islamic country" in
the Muslim world. He has consistently dwelt on need for jihad to right
what he believes are injustices against Muslims perpetrated by the
United States and sometimes by other non-Muslim states, the need to
eliminate the state of Israel, and the necessity of forcing the US to
withdraw from the Middle East. He has also called on Americans to
"reject the immoral acts of fornication, homosexuality, intoxicants,
gambling, and usury,".

Osama has a very strong messianianic streak, believing he is the way
that Islam will restore the Sharia. All he needed was a place. If not
Afghanistan perhaps Pakistani, imagine a Pakistan with a Taliban style
legal system.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-18 15:32:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jack Linthicum
Osama bin Laden's main interest was religion, where he was involved in
both "interpreting the Quran and jihad" and charitable work.
Like other Islamists and Islamic fundamentalists, Bin Laden believes
that the restoration of Sharia law will set things right in the Muslim
world, and that all other ideologies--"pan-Arabism, socialism,
communism, democracy"--must be opposed. He believed Afghanistan under
the rule of Mullah Omar's Taliban was "the only Islamic country" in
the Muslim world. He has consistently dwelt on need for jihad to right
what he believes are injustices against Muslims perpetrated by the
United States and sometimes by other non-Muslim states, the need to
eliminate the state of Israel, and the necessity of forcing the US to
withdraw from the Middle East. He has also called on Americans to
"reject the immoral acts of fornication, homosexuality, intoxicants,
gambling, and usury,".
Osama has a very strong messianianic streak, believing he is the way
that Islam will restore the Sharia. All he needed was a place. If not
Afghanistan perhaps Pakistani, imagine a Pakistan with a Taliban style
legal system.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Pakistan has strong legal traditions from Britain that it wouldn't
easily dispense with. I don't think Ossama's concept of Islamic law
would fit in very well in Pakistan, their instability notwithstanding.
Jack Linthicum
2008-03-18 16:03:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Jack Linthicum
Osama bin Laden's main interest was religion, where he was involved in
both "interpreting the Quran and jihad" and charitable work.
Like other Islamists and Islamic fundamentalists, Bin Laden believes
that the restoration of Sharia law will set things right in the Muslim
world, and that all other ideologies--"pan-Arabism, socialism,
communism, democracy"--must be opposed. He believed Afghanistan under
the rule of Mullah Omar's Taliban was "the only Islamic country" in
the Muslim world. He has consistently dwelt on need for jihad to right
what he believes are injustices against Muslims perpetrated by the
United States and sometimes by other non-Muslim states, the need to
eliminate the state of Israel, and the necessity of forcing the US to
withdraw from the Middle East. He has also called on Americans to
"reject the immoral acts of fornication, homosexuality, intoxicants,
gambling, and usury,".
Osama has a very strong messianianic streak, believing he is the way
that Islam will restore the Sharia. All he needed was a place. If not
Afghanistan perhaps Pakistani, imagine a Pakistan with a Taliban style
legal system.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Pakistan has strong legal traditions from Britain that it wouldn't
easily dispense with. I don't think Ossama's concept of Islamic law
would fit in very well in Pakistan, their instability notwithstanding.
Tell that to the very large number of Taliban followers in the ISI and
the Pakistani Army.
Jerry Kraus
2008-03-18 16:09:05 UTC
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Post by Jack Linthicum
Post by Jerry Kraus
Post by Jack Linthicum
Osama bin Laden's main interest was religion, where he was involved in
both "interpreting the Quran and jihad" and charitable work.
Like other Islamists and Islamic fundamentalists, Bin Laden believes
that the restoration of Sharia law will set things right in the Muslim
world, and that all other ideologies--"pan-Arabism, socialism,
communism, democracy"--must be opposed. He believed Afghanistan under
the rule of Mullah Omar's Taliban was "the only Islamic country" in
the Muslim world. He has consistently dwelt on need for jihad to right
what he believes are injustices against Muslims perpetrated by the
United States and sometimes by other non-Muslim states, the need to
eliminate the state of Israel, and the necessity of forcing the US to
withdraw from the Middle East. He has also called on Americans to
"reject the immoral acts of fornication, homosexuality, intoxicants,
gambling, and usury,".
Osama has a very strong messianianic streak, believing he is the way
that Islam will restore the Sharia. All he needed was a place. If not
Afghanistan perhaps Pakistani, imagine a Pakistan with a Taliban style
legal system.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Pakistan has strong legal traditions from Britain that it wouldn't
easily dispense with.  I don't think Ossama's concept of Islamic law
would fit in very well in Pakistan, their instability notwithstanding.
Tell that to the very large number of Taliban followers in the ISI and
the Pakistani Army.- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
I'm not saying that the situation isn't extremely complex in
Pakistan. It is. Certainly, there exist important elements that
support the Taliban. But, obviously, many others don't. Musharraf
has obviously been playing a double or triple game for many years, as
MI5 has pointed out. But, I'm doubtful that the whole of Pakistan
could be readily transformed into a Taliban style Islamic Republic.
That, in itself, is a very interesting question though, Jack.
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