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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Blockades and trade interdiction were used during the World Wars, and I don't think there was any change that made such actions illegal post-1945 (given that the Allies had used it, it would have...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Disrupting an enemy's trade has been considered fair game for the past century, and that generally has the effect of severely inconveniencing the civilian population in order to put pressure on an...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    The statement was that justice is only dished out on the loser. Which to be honest is probably correct.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Alas, Stario's assertion above may be cynical, but it is also fundamentally correct.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    The fact that an action causes suffering to the civilian population does not a priori make it a war crime though. The Americans hit electrical grids in Yugoslavia and Iraq after all.
    'Dual-use'...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Technically it isn't strictly speaking, if the previously linked blog is accurate.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    IIRC the US didn't oppose the Khmer Rouge, and objected when the Vietnamese invaded Cambodia and deposed them (since Vietnam was aligned with the Soviets and the KR with China).
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    It's a bit of a moot point though. The other major goal of WW2 bombing campaigns (which were far larger in magnitude than the Russians' current actions) was to destroy an enemy's industrial base and...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    To be fair, that's total casualties, not just those caused by US/Coalition forces.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Well, for the US at least, considering their actions in Iraq and elsewhere, such an accusation is basically invoking the old adage about the pot and the kettle (although the Balts have a better leg...
  11. Re: Why the Roman Republic won - manpower or mobilization?

    The difference in recruitment capabilities between Rome and the Hellenistic monarchies and why that difference existed is pretty clear. However, that leaves the question of Carthage, which was a...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    I'm not necessarily convinced, given the demographics, that the Crimean population would agree with that. Unless the Ukrainians intend mass ethnic cleansing of the peninsula after taking it (which is...
  13. Re: Why the Roman Republic won - manpower or mobilization?

    He does reach a similar conclusion near the end of the post though, comparing the socii to the already-existing systems of patronage in Roman society.

    Although the other major point is that Rome...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    They might accept Russian control of Crimea as a de facto situation, but they would not recognize it de jure.
  15. Re: USA midterm elections and the path to the future elections in USA

    The other issue is that Hispanics are often a) anti-socialist (Cubans especially) and b) strongly Catholic (and hence anti-abortion). Incidentally, AFAIK black Americans are often more socially...
  16. Re: USA midterm elections and the path to the future elections in USA

    It seems like DeSantis has been gaining popularity among Republicans and, more interestingly, has been locking horns with Trump. Given that DeSantis is younger than Trump and clearly popular, what...
  17. Re: Husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi attacked in his home.

    As I understand it, it's surprisingly common for radical political views to 'flip' like this. Perhaps a lot of radicals are committed to being 'anti-establishment' (whatever that means) rather than...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    It doesn't seem very likely that the social media posts of a regional strongman or a paramilitary leader have much impact on the actions of the military general staff (especially since they haven't...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    I'm not sure there has actually been such talk. To the best of my knowledge, there has not been any case of such a threat being made at an official level (if asked directly, the Russian government's...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    That isn't really correct. I don't think there's much prospect of an American nuclear retaliation against Russia for an attack against Ukraine (which the US doesn't even have a treaty obligation to...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    There are, but they're not necessarily that effective when dealing with a wide, dispersed front line with few significant troop concentrations.



    The question that will then be answered is...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Unless the number was total casualties (KIA and WIA) and the writer confused 'casualties' and 'fatalities'.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    That would depend on the circumstances though. Consider the case of the Kerensky government in 1917; the decision to continue a failing war against Germany was a major contributor to the Bolsheviks...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    I still don't know why the Russians have bothered trying to hold Kherson in the first place; it would be far easier to defend against Ukrainian counterattacks from the other side of the river...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    To be fair, the Saudis are perfectly OK with supporting groups with similar slogans when said groups are Sunni.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Although I said that before Putin suddenly reversed course and pushed through the annexations. Still, if needs must he can probably unmake such a thing as easily as he made it; I doubt many Russians...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    I suppose that's the tricky part.

    It's pretty clear that the results of the 2014 referendum were heavily rigged (to say nothing of more recent ones). The question is whether or not a 'free and...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Elon Musk recently got pilloried on Twitter for this. I think he goofed on the details, since a more practical argument would have focused on Crimea and the issues of a) the demographics (which have...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    I think that bringing up the Kosovo case in relation to Putin's current actions is stretching an analogy far past the breaking point. The cases of Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Transnistria all have at...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    I think the implication is more that a nuclear attack on Ukraine would trigger a (conventional) American intervention against Russian forces in the region, then Putin could claim 'defeat' by the US...
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    Re: The Rings of Power. Lord of the Rings. TV Show.

    Other than by the fact that they are mortal and the Elves are not, which is what irritated them.
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    Re: The Rings of Power. Lord of the Rings. TV Show.

    It does seem to me that Tolkien has a different moral logic than most modern speculative fiction writers. The Numenoreans are depicted as being inherently in the wrong for defiance of divine will...
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    Re: The Rings of Power. Lord of the Rings. TV Show.

    That seems like a very bizarre misrepresentation of the Numenoreans' grudge against the elves, which as I understand it (but my knowledge of Tolkien is extremely limited) is basically anger at the...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Except that also means that losing it has a far bigger impact.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    The most obvious cause for defection would be if they weren't being paid. Also, if a lot of unwilling draftees are gathered near the capital, then any riot could quickly grow dangerous (since now...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Disgruntled protestors or rioters mainly.
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Unfortunately, the point in largely moot. There are two groups Putin needs to keep control over to hold onto power; the military and the security services (FSB and National Guard). As long as they...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    You do understand how mutually assured destruction works, yes?
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    Another probable reason is a lack of significant viable targets. Forces along the front are spread out and mobile; there aren't any tightly-concentrated groups.

    The reaction to the mobilization...
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    Poll: Re: Russia, US, Ukraine, and the Future

    The only problem is how? Full mobilization would add the problem of disrupting the delicately maintained appearance of normalcy in Moscow that Putin needs to preserve in order to prevent rioting....
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