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American Sniper Hung out to dry

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by patsfan13, Mar 30, 2008.

  1. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2008/03/30/2008-03-30_american_sniper_hung_out_to_dry.html




    The guys in Iraq shot the guy, they were court marshaled, damned if you, dead if you don't.
     
  2. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    And so they should have been. Oh that's right, troops should murder 14 year old children if they inadvertently get in the way of their war, I forgot we were living in psychoville.
     
  3. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Did you read the article?
     
  4. sdaniels7114

    sdaniels7114 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    These were SEAL teams, it had to occur to someone during the planning that they might get spotted. If you're operating in Sheep country you have to expect to see a couple of Shepards. What were their orders? Why didn't they check in with their Command? Why didn't they just move to a new spot?
     
  5. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    They didn't have much time to make a decision, for a sniper team in that sort of terrain moving anywhere in daylight is suicide, they want to move at night. It sounds as if they were after a particular target.
     
  6. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    Yes. I'm glad they were court-marshaled. You can't just murder innocent people because they happen to walk by you. I hope they go to prison for life. And not that I should have to explain to an adult why murder is wrong, but how many more terrorists will be created and soldiers killed because of the story that American troops are killing innocent shepherds. I wonder what the son they let go will end up doing......
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2008
  7. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    I would not like to make that decision. The same thing happened in the first Gulf War. A group of sheppards camd across a Green Beret hide out,they let the shppards go including a kid of about 16. Shortly there-after truck loads of Iraqie army soldiers surrounded the team,they barely made it out. If I was face with kind of dilema I would use Rule Utilitarianism,a moral guidline for makeing such difficult decisions. Rule Ut provides a test for moral principles or rules based on the effect of the TOTAL wellbeing of the people involved. If applied here the act of killing the sheppards would have saved American lives,and inceased the well-being of the lives of the average Afganie. Its a real thin line here,but the sheppards were in a combat zone. So if I had to make the decision it would be that the sheppards would be killed if they could not be silanced some other way such as detaining them. AGAIN:
    According to basic rule utilitarianism killing is wrong unless the total effect of killing those sheppards would be to maximise the well being of a greater number of people. If he sniper group completed its mission,and more people were free from Taliban opression then it would be morally correct to kill them.
    Unfortunatly history is strewn with these kinds of moral dilemas,during war. :(
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2008
  8. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    Combat zone or not, the sheppards didn't choose to be in a war, it was forced on them. How about these guys be real heros and say "if we die, we die honorably, not as murderers." In my opinion, you can't just plug your conscience into a formula and then be satisfied with the outcome. If it feels wrong, it most likely is. I wouldn't be able to live with myself having murdered those people, so I really don't see the supposed moral ambiguity here. When you sign up to fight in a war, you are making a choice that assumes the risks involved. These people didn't make such a choice.
     
  9. reflexblue

    reflexblue PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #91 Jersey

    I would have a hard time, a very hard time makeing that kind of decision. But if I knew that MORE people would live a better life it would be the decision I'd have to make.
    On you're point about dieing honorably,there there to do a covert mission most likely to take out a high level Taliban leader. To die in a fire-fight with a group of low level taliban would be a wast of their lives.
    And if you have to make dicisions like this one I think its better to have some moral guidlines to go by.
    There is another moral guidline called Act Utilitarianism, it has less latittude than rule ut. It states that its moraly right to do even if it produces more harm to more people . Ex. You're walking along a river bank in Austria in the late 1800's,you see a boy drownding, you jump in and save him . Tht was the morally right thing to do,even though he grows up to be Hitler.

    I'm not tring to in anyway down-play the seriousness of this situation,but it would be a great topic of debate in a moral philosophy class. I really don't know how it would turn out I.E. the sheppards live,or die.
     
  10. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    There is an interesting philosphical dilemma in certain situations. For example, you are a bus driver and the brakes have gone out. If you turn left you take out 12 adults, if you turn right you run over a five year old. I don't see the same dilemma here. First, lives cannot be weighed simply on numbers. The fact that the soldiers have chosen to engage in a war and the shepherd and his son have not is an extremely important element here.

    The options, as you are describing them are A) kill the shepherd and his son, then either take out the Taliban leader or die trying or B) let them live and either they do not alert the Taliban to your whereabouts or they do and you get killed by low-level Taliban fighters.

    Option A makes several assumptions. 1) The possibility of killing the Taliban leader (not the actual act of killing them as it is not assured) is worth taking the lives of the innocent men as the Taliban will be tangibly weaker and thus take less lives (saving more than the shepherd). 2)The act of killing an innocent shepherd is morally equivalent to taking the life of an American soldier. (choice of risk) 3) The act of killing the innocent shepherd and possibly his son won't indirectly lead to more lives being lost than it saves. 4) events will unfold as you predict them to. There are way too many intangibles here. This assumption is false as you could fail to kill the leader anyway or the Shepherd may not alert them to your whereabouts.

    Once you allow soldiers the option of killing innocents to save themselves you are going to open the door to soldiers making bad decisions and committing atrocities. Not to mention that, as killing the leader v. killing low-level Taliban fighters may indirectly save more lives, killing innocents may indirectly cause not only the family members of the slain to take up arms against the U.S. but it increases the recruiting capability of Taliban/Al Qaeda propaganda.

    When you consider all of these factors I don't see how you can choose option A. It's not the right of the soldiers to make these decisions of the value of human beings' lives. Refusing to kill the shepherd is, in a way, a decision to refuse to make such a decision over another human beings life. Sparing an innocent life can never be considered an immoral act, regardless of the unknown consequences.

    The Hitler drowning as a child example is exactly correct. If you chose to sit there and watch a seemingly innocent child die and then were later told that he would have grown up to committ genocide, it doesn't mean you aren't a sociopath who would watch a child drown. The point is that you don't know the child is Hitler and you don't know what the sheprherd will do. It is imperative that the U.S. not condone the killing of innocent, unarmed civilians under any circumstances and so I'm glad that the snipers are behind bars.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2008
  11. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Reflex blue, very interesting approach, Another factor that hasn't been fully considered is the responsibility of the leader (the guy making the decision, these decisions weren't voted on) is responsible for the lives of his men. Hopw does he balance not only the value of the target and mission vs tha (potentially) innocent civilians, versus the value of his men.

    Wildo, am I safe in assuming you have never been in the military or have responsibility for the lives of others in a life and death situation?

    What if one of yor brothers was on the seal team?
     
  12. PF1996

    PF1996 Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Glad to see that there are still some sane people left in America.

    A very good explanation which focuses on a very important point....Soldiers ASSUME the risk in wars, not civilians. Just like police officers ASSUME risk as part of their jobs...not civilians.
     
  13. PF1996

    PF1996 Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    People like you just don't get it. Self-interest isn't a rational basis for making decisions that affect other people. How can you be so self-centered as to not recognise this? Are you 5 years old?
     
  14. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    I'm so surprised you'd play that card. I'm assuming that you've never had your loved one killed by a distracted driver, does that mean that you must be in that situation to decide whether it's okay to murder the driver?


    I'd say you safely killed 3 birds with one stone here:

    Throw in an irrelevant appeal to emotion and your brewing a perfect storm of ethical and logical fallacy.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2008
  15. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Distracted implies neglegent, here these men had to make decisions that impacted the lives of others. Not even close to being comprable.


    You would say that . I take it that you have never been the the military, correct?
     
  16. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Self interest? The leaders in these situation were responsible for the lives not only of themselves (the self interest part) but also the lives of those they were in command of>

    Both you and Waldo seem blind to this. I can only presume it is because not having been in the military you don't understand the responsibility involved.
     
  17. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    Well then this conversation can go nowhere, as you can apply that argument to anything. By that logic Lyndie England should be set free because none of us have been in the Army and been responsible for the treatment of prisoners.

    Whether or not the decision was emotionally difficult for the soldiers involved doesn't weigh on the morality of the act of killing an innocent civilian. They CHOSE to be soldiers an in so doing they CHOSE to assume the responsibility to make the right decision under difficult circumstances.

    I suppose you have never been an Afghani shepherd? Am I correct in this assumption? Have you ever been the son of a slain Afghani shepherd or anyone who has been innocently killed by American troops? If not I hope you are willing to apply the same moral deference to an emotional Afghani who retaliates against the U.S. as you are to the Snipers. After all, you have never been in their position.

    This is precisely what is so self-centered about your argument. You'd rather take the time to empathize with the soldiers who assumed the risk than put yourself in the shepherds shoes.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2008
  18. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Well another empty strawman, English was in charge of prisioners who couldn't make a decsion that could endanger the lives of everyone she was serving (not to mention that she was a private who wasn't in charge of anything, a simple fact that escapes you.

    I was a soldier and am far more aware of the situation of the situation than you. Which shepard BTW the one that went the the Taliban and got soldiers killed? Or the guy who might or might not have gone to the insurgents who was killed?

    BTW you are right I would much rather to talk to someone thoughtful like reflex blue than you.
     
  19. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    Actually my analogy wasn't with the roles of the men but with the absurdity of the claim that if you haven't been in a certain position, you cannot discuss the morality of the actions people take.

    Again, I suppose you have never been an Afghani shepherd? Am I correct in this assumption? Have you ever been the son of a slain Afghani shepherd or anyone who has been innocently killed by American troops? If not I hope you are willing to apply the same moral deference to an emotional Afghani who retaliates against the U.S. as you are to the Snipers. After all, you have never been in their position.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2008
  20. Wildo7

    Wildo7 Totally Full of It

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    Lol. I'm so thoughtless and yet you have chosen to engage me rather than Reflex. Why don't you actually do what you'd rather do then?

    So I gather that you posted an article advocating murder only to say "Well I know better than you, so shut up" when somebody challenged you. Terrific conversation skills you have.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2008

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