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Indonesia Playing Politics With Tsunami Relief

  1. Jan 12, 2005 #1

    russ_watters

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  3. Jan 12, 2005 #2
    I don't see what you find disgusting. Indonesia refusing US military help?
     
  4. Jan 12, 2005 #3
    I can understand why they made at least some of those choices. Are they disgusting for not allowing our military to conduct training excersizes in their airspace when they undoubtedly need our help? Are we disgusting for insisting on performing military training excersizes in someone elses airspace whom we are supposedly helping?

    I wish a better compromise could have been made. Still, I don't accept this tactic on their part as "disgusting," because if our national security was faced with the same question, I think we would make the same decision.
     
  5. Jan 12, 2005 #4
    Indonesia is right in the decision it made. Who knows what other agenda the U.S. may have....any country would do the same thing (especially the U.S.) in time of war and the fact that Indonesia is the largest islamic country.
     
  6. Jan 12, 2005 #5

    PerennialII

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    Whether anyone would do anything similar doesn't make it any less disgusting. Them restricting aid to a "rebellious" part of their country makes wonder whether they are using the Tsunami to solve their internal problems, adding a new dimension to how disgusting this is. One would think that the US marines get enough training as it is, and can't really see why the US would be even remotely interested about the Aceh region.
     
  7. Jan 12, 2005 #6
    No, but what we are implying is that we would do the same thing because, although it is a hard choice to make, it may be the right thing to do. It is also true that it may not be the right thing to do. However, anyone who would do the same should think twice before passing a guilty judgement.

    If Russ would let those providing aid to the US (in a hypothetical situation) do military training in US airspace, then he's justified in being critical. Personally, I would consider our national security too important; we could find other ways of recieving aid. Foreign planes in our airspace can be a significant breach of security. Therefore I'm a bit hesitant to throw any stones, personally.

    This would also impact whether their decision was the right one, and is a good point. I wonder how much information we do not have?
     
  8. Jan 12, 2005 #7

    russ_watters

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    Yes - allowing your own people to die because you have a political bone to pick with those giving the aid and the opportunity to use that aid itself as a tactic in fighting an internal conflict is disgusting.
    This may require clarification: it mentioned in the article that flight status requires no more than 14 days between training flights. That means taking off, flying around for a very short time, and landing (the landing is the most important part of the qualification and several are required). Since the carrier was less than 13 miles off the coast, it was in Indonesian airspace and the planes weren't even allowed to do this. We're not even talking flying over Indonesia itself, conducting combat training, etc. Just landing qualifications. There is absolutely no reason no to allow this.
    Can you name a time ever in history where the US has used such a natural disaster relief effort as a pretext for war? Its simply not an issue.
    Yes!! This isn't even just about the US - they are using the humanitarian effort itself in their internal politics. Its nice that they are observing a cease-fire during the aid effort, but to not allow aid to areas where rebels are - thats....well, disgusting!
    WHY? Why is it right to let civilians die because you don't like who is giving the aid or because there happen to be rebels nearby? Not even Hussein did that (much). He allowed humanitarian aid into the country. This is more along the lines of what the warlords did in Somalia, or perhaps, the Kursk incident (though in Russia's defense, that was a military accident).
    See above "military training" is not combat training and I absolutely would allow that in an aid situation or otherwise (and we do it all the time). The only reason not to allow it would be if you consider the training flights a threat, which they have no basis for.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2005
  9. Jan 12, 2005 #8

    russ_watters

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    Please, guys, if you didn't read the whole article, please do. There are many, many points in it:

    -Not allowing flight qualifications for US Navy pilots offshore.
    -Not allowing military to carry weapons - particularly heinous considering security is a problem already.
    -Not allowing aid to areas where rebels are.
    -Requiring aid workers and journalists to have specific travel plans or face expulsion
    -Not allowing on-site bases of operation or temporary camps for military aid workers (you can help us, but you have to leave every night). Now instead of ferrying aid from ships, most of the effort is in ferrying aid workers to and from land on a daily basis.
    -Possibly using these restrictions to cover-up corruption and human rights abuses by the Indonesian government/military.
    -Trying to use the disaster as a pretext for lifting an embargo on arms sales to Indonesia.

    Not even IRAN, our supposed bitter enemy, acted this way following the earthquake there last year (though admittedly, the scope was smaller). We try to help, they slap us in the face: why should we help them now?
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2005
  10. Jan 12, 2005 #9
    Well, WHY didn't my explanation make sense, and WHY didn't you quote both statements that I made - that it may be right and that it may be wrong? Since I explained WHY it might be necessary to do that, it would help me explain myself further if I knew WHY you disregarded that explanation.

    It seems reasonable to start where I left off, instead of where I began.
     
  11. Jan 12, 2005 #10

    russ_watters

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    Locrian, your justification seemed to be that we would (or might) make the same choices. That's an excuse, not a justification. I'm sure you tried it with your mother when you were little (Mom: why did you do it? You: well, everyone else is!). A justification looks at the act individally and makes an argument regarding the actual merits of the act. You referenced one specific point (the pilot training thing) which appears to be based on a misunderstanding of the issue and based on that an incorrect prediction of my position on the question.

    So that's why I ask: why are these actions "the right thing to do?"
     
  12. Jan 12, 2005 #11

    And where did you read all that my friend ? Oh yeah.. in good old "USA Today" magazine ? Gotch ya sucker.
     
  13. Jan 12, 2005 #12

    Gokul43201

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    Yes, I'm sure USA Today made that all up....'cause it was a slow news day.

    Clearly these actions make Indonesia look bad...in fact, I'd say they come off as quite pathetic. Whether there was reason for these actions is not known - it may have been something the US military did - but I can't understand what trump Indonesia thinks they hold, that they can negotiate arms deals with the US. Being the ones in need of help, they are at a disadvantage as far as negotiations are concerned. What gives them this power to negotiate ?
     
  14. Jan 12, 2005 #13
    From what I read in the article, I would have to agree with Russ, but it's such a cursory overview that it is easy to get the wrong impression.
     
  15. Jan 13, 2005 #14

    plover

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    Unfortunately, the TNI (the Indonesian military) has not even kept to the cease fire (also here). There hasn't been fighting in the coastal areas that were actually damaged by the tsunami, but apparently substantial forces continued sweeping villages inland instead of assisting in relief work. To all appearances, the Indonesian government has gone about the relief effort in a weaselly and opportunistic fashion that's just, er, disgusting.

    On the other hand, it is also true that some TNI units involved in the relief have ignored some of the restrictions and red tape demanded by Jakarta and allowed aid workers to get things done.

    More on Indonesian requests for military supplies, along with an interview with Colin Powell.

    And here's the Human Rights Watch letter to Indonesia's president, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, concerning the relief efforts.
     
  16. Jan 13, 2005 #15
    I read the article the first time. That point about Navy pilots is funny at best.
     
  17. Jan 13, 2005 #16
    Once you let them in, then later is very hard to throw them out,i'm talking about US army.
     
  18. Jan 13, 2005 #17
    That isn't true. I suggested we might make the same choice and then gave a reason we might do that. The justification lies in the logic and facts behind the circumstances. I'm sure you tried arguing with your mother when you were little by only addressing half her arguments or by belittling her. Did it work then?
     
  19. Jan 13, 2005 #18
    On another note, my father just got called by the navy with a request to help Indonesia from a military vessel (he is not in the service, but was in the past). Maybe the news this thread is based off of will make his work more interesting?

    I have to admit i'm rather envious of him. I'm not sure how free he'll be able to be with the information (I can't think of any reason he couldn't be, but then I don't know much about the situation), but if I hear any information we haven't all heard before that's worth recounting, I will post it.
     
  20. Jan 13, 2005 #19

    russ_watters

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    Huh? You said it wasn't true then you said virtually the same thing with virtually the same words! If I'm missing something, I truly apologize, but I don't think I am.
     
  21. Jan 13, 2005 #20

    I know what you old man will say, simply: Indonesian moslems bad and evil, americans the best people in the world.
     
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