Robert Winner

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Has the US declared war in Libya, Somalia, and Pakistan?

This week the US Seal Team 6 invaded Libya and Somalia looking for terrorists. In 2011 President Obama took credit for the capture of Osama in Pakistan. These were in the words of the Defense spokesman conducted under the "Laws of War".

Wickapedia says Laws of War are: "The law of war is a legal term of art that refers to the aspect of public international law concerning acceptable justifications to engage in war (jus ad bellum) and the limits to acceptable wartime conduct.

Secretary of State John Kerry says: Terrorists 'can run but they can't hide': Kerry praises African raids while Libya demands 'explanation'. He recently declared Syrian President as a thug and murder. Is that some sort of diplo speak that I am not aware of. It could be that "fast boat" needs a few quotes to write himself a few medals. This should do it.

I just read the duties of the Secretary of State ... It did include that he / she is the chief diplomat for the United States. Failed to mention "Hawk in Charge".

Since Kerry is beating the War Drums for the Obama Administration ... who will be the diplomat that will seek peaceful resolutions to conflict?

I am not against removing the likes of Osama and captured senior al Qaeda official Anas al Libi. In fact I am all for it. I am against the US "invading" other countries and do it under "Laws of War" unless we have declared war.

How is this viewed by the international community. How about US citizens?

  • Oct 9 2013: Robert, Besides the convenience of the secret Navy Seal mission, it is also the problem of to whom you declare war. For example, When Osama Bin Laden made a sneak attack on the U. S., but he was hiding in Afghanistan, whom do you declare war on? Similarly do you declare war on Pakistan when bin Laden was there? Also should we declare war on Libya for Al Libi? Is it almost comical to declare war on Al Libi, then try to catch him on foreign soil?
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      Oct 9 2013: Your point is well taken. The State Department spokesman stated that these were conducted under Laws of War .... not me. By definition the Laws apply at war. No war was declared ... so this was not authorized or sanctioned by the host country ... since they consider us terrorists and non believers .... was this simply a US sanctioned kidnapping ... a terrorist act on our part.

      The real argument here is: Does the end justify the means?

      They taught us at police academy that ... you cannot break the law to enforce the law.

      The real shame here is that we have lost international respect in foreign relations and are a diplomatic failed nation and getting worse by the day .... our domestic politics are no better.

      The Russians spanked us openly on the international scene ... we still defend Benghazi instead of correcting the errors and manning up .... while the USA is shut down we still give money to countries that hate us ... this could go on forever ... but like our leaders have said there will be no discussions and no negotiations (until the GOP gives in). Its my ball and if I cannot be the star I will take my ball and go home.
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    Oct 8 2013: As usual, the bully gets to rule the playground when no parents are around...
  • Oct 7 2013: Why should you have to declare war to preform a warlike act?

    Unless enforced, laws are nothing more than ink on paper. As there is no one to enforce international law, it can be ignored whenever convenient for those in a position of power. This isn't necessarily a good thing, but it is how the system works.

    Don't take international law too seriously. Its all bark and no bite. Again, its far from an ideal situation, but it is the truth.
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      Oct 7 2013: I agree you do NOT have to declare war to conduct a act of war. I am tired of people making up justifications for their stupid and illegal actions.

      Do you think that Libya has a valid complaint that the USA entered the country illegally and performed a military operation and kidnapped one of their citizens. Yeah, yeah, he's a bad guy ... I get it.

      The second part of the question is who will be the diplomat ... can it be Kerry?

      As you say International laws can be ignored when it is convenient by those in charge ... and you are right that is how the system works ... does that make it right? We stomp our feet and yell at one leader for violating the laws and yet we do it and say ... its OK.

      You are correct and I appreciate your reply .... I am just so tired of the blame game and all of the double standards that are occurring. Our International face is not one of Honor and respect. We are a failed diplomatic state and our foreign relations suck .... It makes no difference who is elected next, it will take about twenty years or more of hard work to undue all of the damage both foreign and domestic.

      Thanks for the reply. I wish you well. Bob.
      • Oct 7 2013: Try looking at it less from a moral standpoint, and more from a pragmatic one.

        Statecraft is all about hypocrisy. I'm not a diplomat, so I can go about saying it. Every country is ultimately concerned only with its own best interests; morality, legality, and even human right, are all nothing but convenient excuses that can be forgotten when they turn inconvenient (unless its concerning things done to your own citizens, then you come under heavier scrutiny).
        Take the moral high ground and don't be a hypocrite? Then expect the other powers to walk all over you as they take advantage of your self imposed limits. Ruthlessness may be a moral sin, but its a practical virtue.

        High ideals rarely live up to the real world, I'm afraid.
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          Oct 8 2013: Definition of diplomacy (n)

          1.international relations: the management of communication and relationships between nations by members and employees of each nation's government
          2.skill in international dealings: skill in managing communication and relationships between nations
          3.tact: skill and tact in dealing with other people

          Politicians are without morals or ethics and serve only their interests I agree however it is the charge of diplomats to find mutually acceptable solutions to a common challenge.

          I get your point ... and it is unfortunate that you are right.

          Again thanks for the reply. Bob.