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2023-10-10 09:35 by Karl Denninger
in Musings , 1018 references Ignore this thread
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.... and I don't care.

Postulate: There are no rules of war.

Corollary: There are no "war crimes."

Oh, I know, the molly-coddling UN-style bullshit is that there are.  "Geneva Conventions" and all that.  429 "articles" of "law" related to war and every single one of them is self-serving bullshit.

War is Hell.  War is supposed to be Hell and anything that makes it less-Hell is Satanic in its implication, implementation and thought process because doing that incites more war.

War should be recoiled from, not embraced.  Papering over the horror of it with threats of "prosecution" is not only a joke its a trope and should get everyone involved hanged right here and now so as to prevent the next war.

Humanity and technology are largely responsible for this, incidentally, and that's really nobody's fault.  People have minds, they use them, this results in innovation and the consequence of that is detachment between action and result.  Its no different, really, than what goes on in my home or yours every single day.  You don't stoke a fire manually nor open and close windows to regulate the temperature in your house or apartment; you push a button or turn a dial and a machine takes care of it.

A hundred or so years ago it didn't work that way.  If it was cold you made a bigger fire in a fireplace or stove.  If it was hot you opened windows (and hoped there was a breeze.)  You did it, you paid attention to whether what you did was sufficient, and then you stopped when it was.  You learned over time, from infancy in fact, how to stoke and build said fire so it was sufficient but not 95 degrees in your house, and to keep the coals going overnight so in the morning you still had some residual heat and didn't have to light it again.  If you wanted light at night you lit a candle or oil lamp. When you were done you blew it out.  You didn't dare leave either unattended lest they burn your house down.  Today you flip a switch and all that happens if you leave it on is that you get a somewhat-higher bill from the power company.

Well, war was the same way.

If you wanted to kill people in size you had to go do it face-to-face. You had to see the horror of what you were doing. Plunge the sword or dirk into the other guy's body, feel it go in, see the expression on his face and watch him die.  Of course you had to do this while he was trying to do the same to you, which adds quite a bit to the drama, does it not?

Innovation seems to come with war first.  Go figure; nobody likes losing a war because historically it has meant losing your life.

Pushing a button on a bombsight, mashing the FIRE button while staring at a radar scope or sniping someone from 1,000yds out is a whole different thing than going man-to-man (mounted or not) with swords, pikes or dirks.  Today we don't even look through the bombsight -- we program a GPS or IMU in the front of a missile, push a button, often from afar, and then from a satellite high above the earth watch the resulting wreckage.  We don't even see the dead bodies those acts generate most of the time.

I have no respect for anything in the Geneva Conventions or any other so-called "laws of war" and if you manage to incite me sufficiently that I decide to go to war there will be no rules whatsoever, except for me seeking to make you dead before you can make me dead.  So-called "rules" or "laws" of war are directly contrary to everyone's interest in not engaging in war in the first place and were enacted and put in place by assholes who never have to face the horrors of their own acts and are trying to sanitize them so you'll allow said assholes to commit more of them without turning on said leaders yourselves.  Every government official involved in that and in "respecting" same deserves to be forced onto the front line with nothing more than a dagger or bayonet; no ammunition, grenades or other similar things that will give them the ability to inflict death at a distance beyond the reach of their own hand.  If you really want or are willing to engage in war then do it hand-to-hand and deal with the horrors of blood running down your arms and legs -- and hope that is the other guy's, but it might quite-possibly be yours.

Let's think this through at a very-basic level: Does the prospect of your wife, daughter or son who decides to go fight being raped up the ass and then decapitated by the opposing party in a war make you more or less likely to engage in said war in the first place?

Duh.

In the context of the current mess over in Israel and Gaza I do not care if Israel flattens Gaza to a literal smoking ruin.  War sucks and like it or not that's what this is and Hamas made the decision to initiate hostilities, so the IDF may as well get on with it.  They gave fair warning to "uninvolved" civilians to get the Hell out of there.  They made that decision and I respect it.  It is a fact that derogating or outright ignoring everyone's right to self-defense and the defense of their loved ones is why the Hamas attacks were successful and why Hamas was operating in Gaza to begin with.  There were and have been two groups there over the last decades; those civilians who support Hamas and those who were defenseless as a direct result of government policy prohibiting "at will" arms ownership.  The former are complicit and the latter were prohibited from slaying the terrorists in advance of their operation and it was the Israeli government that did the prohibiting because they consider "Gazans" to be less-than-citizens.  Evidence?  They call those who live there "Gazans", not Israelis!  Does Israel call those people living in Jerusalem Jerusalans?

But in fact Israel's government effectively did disarm its own citizens because of this very position, that is unforgiveable and entirely and reasonably charged against the Knessset and Bibi himself.  Every single one of the dead is dead because they had no arms with which to resist and those not interested in such happening in Gaza had no way to effectively assault the attackers before they breached the lines from behind and it is the Israeli government that made it that way.  Going into a town to rape, kidnap, murder and plunder where everyone has a gun is a losing act; every window becomes an elevated platform from which you are shot at from all sides!

Unless, of course, there are no guns because they're illegal and everyone is a "nice, law-abiding citizen" -- except those who aren't really "citizens" so we can't actually let everyone buy and have all the guns they want because "some are lesser" and might use them to bad ends.

The problem with such niceties is that the invading horde, terrorists or those who are intent on "gimme dat!" don't give a wet crap about laws, any more than common criminals do.  A government thus can either let the people even the odds as they see fit, declaring that in fact everyone is equal in the most-basic of ways or it is a fact that said government deliberately posts up their citizens as shooting gallery targets.

Human history is full of brutality, like it or not, and so is nature. Not all animals kill only for food; the common housecat kills birds for both food and sport, and will do so even if well-fed at home.  We claim to be "superior" but we're not; we're animals, and the "superior" often is really nothing more than "kill it because it thinks differently than I do" in respect to religion, government structure or simply because someone thinks you're ugly -- or have a fat wallet.

Denying facts does not make them untrue and in the context of war it just makes you dead.

That which reduces the experience of the horror of war makes it more likely that you'll engage in war.

And if you don't think that's objectively bad, well, let me be the first to call you the monster.