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what is the difference between Patriotism and Terrorism ?

I guess depends on which side you are fighting for or against, you may be called a patriot or a terrorist. so as a global community, we need to address this as a fundamental question, and then and only then we can expect sustainable peace.


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    Sep 30 2013: You can be a patriot without killing innocent civilians. That is a fundamental truth that does not depend upon which side you are on.
    • Sep 30 2013: I'm pretty sure the guy/guys who dropped the nuclear bombs onto Japanese cities, killing innocent citizens in there thousands, was a patriot.
      • Da Way

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        Sep 30 2013: more like 250, 000 counting deaths from radiation effects etc.
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      Oct 1 2013: You can also be a patriot despite having killed innocent civilians, which is nicely framed as 'collateral damage' nowadays. What separates those 'active patriots' from terrorists?
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        Oct 3 2013: :) All is fair in love and war. I think in that war it's the only way to stop the tragic slaughter started by the Japanese intruders and bring peace to more innocent people.
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          Oct 4 2013: 'All is fair in love and war.'

          There are many sayings which are complete nonsense yet won't die off. This is one of them.

          I think you are more refereeing to craig lastname's comment, as he mentioned the nuclear bombs, but let me try to answer that.

          The bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki was not 'the only way', and a conscious decision was made NOT to go for an alternative way to force Japan to surrender.

          In fact, both cities have become a 'live experiment' of this new military technology to gain first hand empirical data on human guinea pigs. This may sound cruel to say this, but as the alternative has not been tried, there is no other way to interpret this bombing attack.

          At that time, the destructive power of nuclear weapons was well enough understood to know about its 'kinetic impact', yet what remained highly unclear, was its radiation effect, short and long term, on the population.

          If it was 'just' to stop Japan in its 'tragic slaughter' the alternative way which wasn't chosen was to 'demonstrate' the military superiority by dropping a nuclear bomb in plain sight yet in save distance into the North Pacific Ocean. Not just randomly on one fine morning, but clearly announced and combined with a clear warning message and conditions.

          This would have not only allowed Japan to experience the tremendous power of that weapon, but also to consider the consequences if this weapon was dropped on their island. We'll never know if a demonstration of power would have changed the minds of Japanese authorities at that time to finally surrender, but the chance was clearly missed, that they might have.

          Therefore we should be careful in using the conception of an 'only way', as it often proves itself as 'misconception' as there are often alternatives out of a broader perspective.

          Interestingly, the concept of 'no alternatives' is often used to cover or to justify political decisions, and whenever this phrase is used, it is well worth to have a really deep look into it ..
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        Oct 4 2013: :)))I'm very surprised you dislike the famous saying so much that you've sentenced it to death! And I'm very glad to hear your different point of view on "only", different voices of others always help me get rid of my ignorance of misunderstanding on things. But I'd like to say in my perspective, "only"can be interpreted into "have to", in the war, with the tremendous casualty having occurred and still continuing rising in the front line,the Japanese still didn't give up killing your people, how can you waste any time to think about the enemy's people more, the first response must be to keep your own people survive and to stop the war as quick as possible.Throwing the bomb was the quickest way to destroy their evil power to stop more people suffering. And according to my resource of historic information, American used to plan to throw it onto the Japanese ancient city Kyoto,but they actually did weigh the consequences on morals and decided not to throw it in that city. It may be inhumane to say this but if those Japanese citizens hadn't died in the atom bomb explosion, they would still have to die for their evil government.As you have said,whether the bad influence of the power of the bomb was long or short was still unclear, I think nobody expected it to be long on purpose. So of two evils choose the least. Japanese wagged the war and didn't want to stop killing and surrender at all.To stop the war completely and quickly to save more people's lives and families, I think this was the only way at that emergency. I'd like to say if someone broke into my house and wanted to kill me and my family, I would use everything possible to protect ourselves first at that moment instead of considering how much the thief would suffer or how to catch him more humanely and smartly.
        Thanks for your excellent comment which brought me a lot to think and learn.
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          Oct 4 2013: Yoka, I didn't need to sentence this saying to death, as it never was alive in the first place.

          The frequency in which a false statement is claimed, does not change its validity.

          I do not agree with your explanation why there was no alternative in dropping the bombs, especially as humanity has freely chosen to define a basic set of moral rules to be applied in war between nations and this regardless of their aggressive or defending status.

          These laws of war do not bare conflicts of interests within their intentions, yet the competing concepts of 'Ending war as quickly as possible' can by no means justify unnecessary suffering of combatants and noncombatants. If this ever was tolerated, there was no need whatsoever, to have those laws in the first place.

          The end does not justify the means, not even in wartimes. The fact that the laws of war have been violated in the past and will be violated at present and in the future, does not absolve those responsible.

          If someone broke into your house, you are not expected to take care of the intruder at all and rightly so, as you act out of self-defense for your family and yourself. But if you would extent your self-defense into the intruders house to kill innocent members of his family, you would have gone to far and therefore become a criminal yourself.

          In Nagasaki, as well as in Hiroshima the military targets and military infrastructure was completely embedded within an non-military environment, which, given the destructive power of nuclear weapons, could never have been spared whatsoever.

          The delay in ending the war by setting an example first, may well have cost the live of American soldiers, yet as cruel as it may sound, the body-count would have been in favor of humanity, if the example would have worked out. Yet we'll never know.

          Just recently I read an article about the breaking of the German Enigma code by Polish and British specialists during WW2.
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          Oct 4 2013: This code was used by the German Wehrmacht to encrypt their communication and it was falsely seen by the Germans to be 'unbreakable' by its method.

          Nevertheless, Polish and British mathematicians cracked the code and by doing so, they created a moral dilemma. As the code could be cracked within 20 minutes of any day, all German military communication was known to the allied forces. But how could they use this information, without making the Germans understand that their code got cracked?

          It would not have taken long for Germany to realize, that their tactics have leaked to their enemies, which would have resulted in the making of an even stronger encryption code immediately.

          This knowing, the allied forces had no other choice but to pretend in many cases not to know what was about to happen, which caused thousands of soldiers and civilians loosing their lives, which could have been prevented, but wasn't, out of strategic considerations.

          Sacrificing the lives of your own people, willingly, to maintain an military advantage, is one of the worst moral dilemma I can picture to be in. But it has been done this way and will be in the future.

          I bring this example to make clear, that the body-count of single battles, get weighted in a greater context than 'just' in those battles. Humanity, even in war-times, got to have this wider context to be weighted in. Humanity is indivisible into nationalities! At all times!

          This is why I consider the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki a war crime. As well as the bombing of Tokyo by incendiary bombs, which was just as destructive before.

          A crime is a crime is a crime. The context makes no difference!
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          Oct 4 2013: Let me give you another example of an moral dilemma, which relates to more recent events in world history.

          After 9/11 an the killing of thousands of innocent people on that very day, a debate started in German weather or not it should be legal to shoot down a hijacked passenger plane to prevent it to be used as a weapon. The question was, if on German territory the German air-force, or other forces, was to be allowed to shoot a hijacked plane out of the sky to prevent terrorist attacks of the same kind, or not.

          In simple words, are we willing to sacrifice a view innocent people who happened to be hijacked to prevent a larger number of innocent people of getting killed by the hijackers.

          This is a difficult decision to make, but I agree with the decision Germany made for itself.

          We decided it to be illegal to shoot down a hijacked plane under any circumstances.

          Even if the plane was heading straight for the next nuclear power-plant and the risks for additional 'collateral' damage while bringing it down was zero.

          The leading argument in this decision is based on the principle, that the 'possibility' of an event is by no means equal to the 'reality' of an event and therefore does not allow 'possibility' to be chosen over 'reality' under no circumstances.

          Your view on this would be interesting to me if you'd like to share it.
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        Oct 4 2013: And don't get me wrong,I hope your humor will come back again.Not so serious.:)
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        Oct 5 2013: I'm surprised again that you have brought me so much good information to discuss with you.:)))))))
        I think moral is for human beings ,not for beasts in human's clothing or like those zombies in the films. If the laws could resolve the intrusion crime, then the ww2 wouldn't have happened. Only if just people can live and implement the laws, will the laws be effective. In that war, it's not that only Americans were suffering, we Chinese suffered the most from the inhumane Japanese intrusion and slaughter. So the atom bomb explosion actually helped to save innocent Chinese in time as well. From the general view of the war,I think the bomb played an important part in stopping the Japanese' crime successfully. It's an alliance strategy and benefited many parties.And it also stopped more Japanese suffering from the war. Those innocent Japanese citizens are a pity and victims in the war. They were used to drive back the Japanese' attacks.This crime should be counted on their governors.They didn't love their people and let them bleed in the war!

        We also have these kind of victims and sacrifice in Chinese wars. Sometimes soldiers will have to choose to organize suicide squad or a forlorn hope to distract enemy's attention for other main force of the army to defeat the enemies.Some people knew they'd never come back and they still preferred to contribute their lives to their people. And we regard them as heroes and under those circumstances there's no other way out.
        I think without sacrifice, victory will never come true. If it's military tactics , sacrifice in the war can't be avoided. In the ww2, human wave tactics played most important part in the war. People sometimes were tools to gain the victory in the battles. If there were robots and other advanced technologies, everything would have been different.
        I don't think your example related to the bombing intruder's house match the situation like this war.No one will do that because obviously this can't stop his crime.
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        Oct 5 2013: And I like your next example in Germany very much. Thanks for sharing it.
        I personally think if the hijacked plane with lots of innocent people appeared in the reality like 911 again, I think those passengers were already dead on the plane.I really don't want this to happen, so I'd like to develop some new technology like a super powerful magnet launched to the plane to stop it moving.But at this moment I think it's impossible. I think those living people are already dead based on the fact that they are just tools for the terrorists to destroy more innocent people and destined to be victims. So if time permits, I'd like to inform all the relatives of the passengers to make them understand the situation and ask their permissions to stop or destroy the plane. Another way is to make it in the airline code of conduct of the unexpected accidents in advance to make people agree on it.Those victims will be heroes and memorized by us forever, all the benefited ones will afford all the compensations to the victims' family and support them mentally. Imagine if the hijacked plane aimed at destroying a powerful device that can eliminate all the mankind, will you still stick to the normal moral standard and wait for the end of the world? If there's no mankind, why does moral standard and other laws matter? I'd like to choose to act positively.
        But this is just my assumption and answer.
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          Oct 5 2013: The subject determines the level of humor I allow myself to apply. This one is not appropriate for me for any, not even sarcasm this time.

          Thank you for sharing your views, which indeed do not resonate with mine.
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        Oct 5 2013: Thank you too.We have a different understanding of the ruthless war.
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        Oct 5 2013: Sorry, let me make an additional remark on the hypothetic terrorists' hijack .
        I think if the statement of measures to stop unexpected terrorists written in the airline code of conduct in advance, it will reduce the possibility of these air attacks because the terrorists know their conspiracy can't succeed at all, which actually protects the passengers from being hijacked more effectively.
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          Oct 5 2013: So you make hostages agree of being intentionally killed by authority in order to separate the criminal from his blackmailing argument?

          With all due respect, Yoka, that is plain nonsense.

          If an airline was allowed to make you sign this sort of suicide agreement to discourage potential hijackers, why don't we just allow our governments to make all of us sign such suicide agreements in order to discourage all other potential criminals and kidnapper right in their tracks as well?

          This would certainly ease the professional life of any police-sniper, as it wouldn't matter anymore who gets killed, the hostage or the kidnapper, as the hostage was perfectly fine to sacrifice its life in order to bring the surviving criminal to justice.

          You may sign those agreements if you like, I wouldn't, as I am not suicidal.
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        Oct 6 2013: Morning~!
        "So you make hostages agree of being intentionally killed by authority in order to separate the criminal from his blackmailing argument?"
        NO,I don't mean that. I mean if the hijacked plane is heading towards any other buildings to hurt or kill more innocent people, people on the plane should have the consciousness to let the relevant authorities to take possible measures to stop or destroy the plane to save other people's lives. If the plane is only hijacked, of course you should let the police and all parties try all out to rescue the passengers abducted. Imagine one is on the plane and he finds the terrorists are operating the plane to head towards the building which your wife and your children happen to be staying in, do you still think you'll wait for the accident happening? I think the hostages are not only on the plane, but also the ones you can't predict that the terrorists are targeting at. Why do you only think about the ones on the plane?
        Under the circumstances I mentioned, you needn't commit suicide, just to trust and permit and think of other people outside of the plane is enough. If you can fight against the gangsters and win to regain the operation of the plane, that'll be the best.
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          Oct 6 2013: 'Why do you only think about the ones on the plane?'

          Because the people of a hijacked plane are the only ones of which I now for sure they are in danger. Anything else, unless it gets realized, is just an assumption of what may happen.

          Assumption isn't knowledge, it is guessing and can therefore be wrong. This is the key!

          Before 9/11, hijacked planes have not been used as a physical weapon, they got hijacked to take the passengers and the crew as hostages. And this will happen again.

          Now, how does your 'concept' know what the plan of the hijackers is? You can only assume that it will be used as a physical weapon again, but unless this is going to happen, it remains an assumption. And this is not just my view on this matter, this is simple logic.

          Because we don't know what is going to happen next with a hijacked plane, Therefore the only people endangered in such an scenario of which we can be certain without any doubt, are the hostages on the plane. Anything else is only imaginative, speculative and can therefore not be taken to make a decision to kill the hostages in advance to prevent an imaginative case in which may be more innocent people get killed. It is the 'may be' which does not allow for such things.

          Imagine the following scenario. There is a regular plane in the sky, which suddenly has technical difficulties. The radio doesn't work anymore and the steering system has serious problems as well. The radar operator on the ground at flight-control noticed, that the plane goes off course, so he alarms the air-fore as part of an anti-terror procedure and soon after, fighter jets take off to check the situation. The passenger plane is loosing hight dramatically, because the steering doesn't work very well, and the pilots do anything possible to prepare for emergency landing. The fighter jets and flight control find on their radar, that the passenger jet is now heading towards a large city and that no contact via radio can be made.
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          Oct 6 2013: Meanwhile the pilots of the passenger plane are trying desperately to gain hight again to be able to fly over the city to avoid crashing into it and to seek for a better landscape for an emergency landing. Their radio doesn't work, so they can not inform anybody about their troubles.

          The fighter jets are now within fire distance of their air to air missiles and start to log in on their target, the passenger plane, which still remains silent and keeps heading fast for the city.

          3 minutes left before the passenger plane reaches the city...

          At this very point, your concept of what to do next deviates from mine the most.

          According to your procedure, you assume the passenger plane was hijacked and will therefore intentionally been used as a weapon which is going to crash some target within the city. As this intentional crash is assumed to kill more civilians on the ground than there are on the plane, the fighter jets fire their missile and the plane gets successfully shut down 1.5 km before the suburbs of that city. All passengers and crew are dead.

          Would that have made any sense?

          I could give you many examples, in which your 'concept' is not working in your 'intention' yet consequently kills innocent people.

          This is what makes the difference in what you know for sure and what you only assume. And this is a tremendous difference! Not just logically, also ethically.
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        Oct 6 2013: I think people can learn from their experiences. It's not only assumption but also evaluation and possible evidence on the situation. If they can't make a judgement whether it's a terror attack or normal air crash, people won't be allowed to stop or destroy the plane. But if there's any obvious evidence to show it's an terror attack(some terrorists release the attack or other possibility´╝ë , the code of conduct could be effective.
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          Oct 6 2013: Any plane-bomb criminal would act accordingly to undermine your concept by taking away exactly that evidence which you now require.

          There is no learning curve in killing civilians due to assumptions. Your predictions won't get more accurate by this experience.

          Either way you take it, you kill out of assumption.

          What meaningful evaluation can you possibly make for a situation of which you are not part of? And this within just minutes of effective reaction time?

          No, this 'evaluation' or 'evidence' will not be available to you to shape your assumptions any better.

          Criminals aren't stupid, they will exactly do what it takes to block your strategy.
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        Oct 6 2013: Looking back to the example you gave me starting with :"After 9/11 an the killing of thousands of innocent people on that very day, a debate started in German weather or not it should be legal to shoot down a hijacked passenger plane to prevent it to be used as a weapon....." So the premise of the discussion is the terror hijacked plane excludes the normal air crash.;)
        And I don't want to argue with you about whether the intelligence of the terrorists is higher than the police's . That's something related to the technology development and personal opinion. I did hear some news about the police successfully stopped and defeated some terrorists' bombing plans in some places in foreign countries. And people all miss sometimes, if the only chance is caught by the police, can the police help to stop the tragedy like 911 in the way I mentioned.People should develop the hi-tech to audit the plane and learn to compare the data of the plane's moving to judge whether it's normal crash or hijacked attack.
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          Oct 6 2013: Yoka, the premise of the discussion is, weather or not 'assumptions' are legal justifications for intentional killing of innocent people.

          Anything else are examples to make the consequences become more visible.

          Applied hi-tech and data analysis does not free you from any decision on that very premise.

          Computers and software can only do what programmers tell them to do. Behavior recognition and analysis is by its intrinsic nature based on assumption and statistics and is weighted and defined by humans.

          If 9 out of 10 criminals would scratch their heads before they take your money, how do you relate this data with all the other people around you who are scratching their heads because their heads are itching? You just can't!

          I understand your motivation to hope for hi-tech technology to fix this dilemma, but technology is only a tool without any moral authority.

          I understand your motivation to have to have a 'faster than humans' approach to gain as much information possible in just a short amount of time to make your predictions as precise as possible.

          But regardless how many data you put into a prediction within the given context, it remains just a prediction.

          This is what I am trying to make you understand, but it seems I am failing.
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        Oct 6 2013: I don't agree with you. Technology can help us to see what's happening on the plane. It's not an assumption but real pictures or voices. And our disagreement is if it is a terror hijack towards other buildings to cause huge casualty, I prefer to destroy the plane to save what we can save , but you insist on letting it be visible and happen because of the lives on the plane.I think I understand your thinking.

        I appreciate your effort on trying to persuade me to accept your opinion. But I'm afraid you've failed. And neither do I want to persuade you to agree with me. Thank you for sharing your opinion with me.
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          Oct 6 2013: 'I think I understand your thinking'

          You may well think that, but your answer makes me understand, that you didn't understand.

          Let me know when China is incorporating your concept so that I can prepare myself. And take care when you are in Germany.
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        Oct 6 2013: This is my personal thinking and I'll take care when I'm in Germany.I think it's safe.:)
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          Oct 6 2013: Yes, it is save, even if you were taken as a hostage on your flight here. We won't shoot you out of the sky. Under no circumstances. :o)
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        Oct 6 2013: No, I won't be a hostage~! Please don't jinx me~.:)))
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        Oct 6 2013: :) No problem. I'm always lucky~. I actually have bought some German learning books and planed to learn some German next year. Maybe will tour Germany next year,too.:)
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          Oct 6 2013: Great, but don't sign any airline agreements of that sort if you are not flying with Lufthansa!
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        Oct 6 2013: Are there any airline companies with that kinda agreement? Interesting.
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        Oct 6 2013: Yes, I think current technology still isn't advanced enough to differentiate the air crash from terror attack clearly and easily, and this kind of terror event is close to impossible in China. But in the future , it might be possible. I don't mind signing on it if it's reasonable.
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          Oct 6 2013: And I can say that I warned you ...

          By the way, close to impossible still is possible.
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        Oct 6 2013: I see. Thanks for reminding~

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