Allah Hafiz.

Discussion in 'Int Corps' started by Nehustan, Apr 29, 2007.

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  1. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

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    I don't know much about XV Psyops group, but a thought came to me that as a result of other people's incompetence, naivety of history and international affairs, and recent events in the gulf, the British Brand has been diminished morally and actually on the world stage. Sometimes history calls upon people to take ridiculous risk to prove their metal, and by extension this can have resonance far beyond them. At other times clever psychology is required. At yet others a combination of the two. While we no longer live in the medieval period, concepts of honour still hold stay, the willingness to sacrifice that which we have in this world, and even to shorten our stay within it, with no real knowledge beyond faith about what might lie beyond. In a world lacking morality and courage such actions are as diamonds amongst the lead of our sins, and have worth far in excess of the stones we dig from the ground, but perhaps share the same longevity in the annals of history.

    Whenever I see the image above I am minded of the myth of 'Herne the Hunter' of whom it is said...

    "Herne was the favourite huntsman of Richard the Second. Mortally wounded while saving his master from a stag at bay, he was miraculously cured by a stranger, who tied the antlers of a dead stag to the dying man's brow. He claimed in payment all Herne's skill in venery. Crazed by the loss of that skill in the craft he loved, Herne fled to the forest, where a pedlar found his horned corpse hanging from an oak. But every night he returned at the head of a spectral hunt to harry the Windsor game as of old."

    This post is purposefully obtuse, but I think I just wanted to put it to state that in a world where we allow the incompetent and morally bankrupt to lead us, its sometimes falls on exceptional individuals (albeit with similar flaws to us all) to recover ground that was lost so cheaply.

    God's speed, and may Allah preserve.
     
  2. Perhaps you should dip into the article by Gen Kiszley i mentioned in the Librarian's corner thread.

    He talks about the difference between "big wars" and "small wars" and how we frequently expect the bad guys to play by our rules of warfare.

    How oftern do we play them at their own game? I know from personal experience that two men in a car with the right messages and logical arguments can have more effect than a whole batallion deployed on the streets in APCs with bayonets fixed.

    PSYOPS has a bad name as a result of Northern Ireland, in fact it was a victory of the Republicn propaganda machine, which continued when we shut ours down.

    I wonder How many PSNI peelers, still find members of the 'RA sat outside their houses when they get home from work. Hever got in the papers did it??

    We keep getting "blown up" in the Information Operations campaign, a lot of it fratricide. Why can't the bird-table queens get the message?

    Perhaps it's just a lot easier to get on the horn for ARCLIGHT.

    When the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.
     
  3. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

  4. Just a minor correction, if you are referring to 'chivalry' I hate to burst your bubble, but it was all crap. A code written up a war loving elite to justify their actions, the reality of warfare was as brutal if not greater then civil wars we see in Africa today. Chivalry often lead to a 'sanitised' and justified way by which one ruling elite could claim and abuse civilians and women of those they conquered. The butchering of children and the surrendered, as well as mass rape often occurred under the direct orders of the so-called chivalrous.

    I am not doubting modern values of honour, respect etc but using history as a means to justify them (as if they couldn't be justified in their own right) is largely nonsense and ignores the brutality and suffering of our ancestors, and owes more to the rewritting of history by romantics in the 18th and 19th centuries.

    Anyway, carry on.
     
  5. Scotty, I don't think you should be talking about the Saracens like this
     
  6. I am talking about everyone from the English, Scots, French, Spainish, Saracens, the works. Go read Medieval History - this was the bread and butter of civilised man (why do you think we so thoroughly destroyed the 'New World' we were using age old tricks that'd serviced us well in the home land)
     
  7. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    Interesting read for my Sunday afternoon...

    First thing that jumped out at me was this part....

    Surely as I recently wrote in a paper, this is the point; many of these nations were impositions, what 'we' thought was best.

    then later in the paper...

    in a world where the structures of socio-political goals are set by politicos whose agenda is bound such requirements as...

    are not as stated missing from the military establishment, rather are denied, suppressed and prohibited by the 'realities' of political agendas. Its ironic that parliament is not meant to bind another, when in reality rather than thrashing out new policy it ends up doing naught but damage control on events and paradigms resulting from previous policy decisions; I think in business this is known as 'throwing good money after bad'. The honest and intelligent call that...

    ..is noble, but will effect little assistance so long as we have the low calibre politicos we have. To borrow a term from the social sciences the approach toward the middle east in particular, our designs, and expectations of the machinery of government are bound by ethnocentricity, and an ignorant pushing of failing strategies in the region that date back at least a 100 years. That is failing unless the secret desire is for instability and chaos, which I have not completely discounted. I recently rehashed a paper on Iraq, and as the article you directed me to cites Lawrence and of course General Templer, I think I'm going to borrow again from Lawrence and Templer's namesakes as I did with the paper's title by saying 'Non Nobis Domine'.
     
  8. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs


    Missed this as I was off reading and considering. You're of course right, the chivalric code is certainly misunderstood and misrepresented a little like democracy. Chivalric code applied within knighthood and nobility, the lopping off of a peasant's head for looking at you would not of been unhonourable, which I think is your point? I draw the democracy parallel as something often glossed over is that Greek democracy was great if you were say an Athenian citizen (or other region), not so great if you were a slave.

    Still honour does exist, even as only a pretension, as does the regaining of honour for a nation. My general thrust was that when honour is lost by the inferior (i.e. Blair), high risks/prices must be endured by those upon whose sholders its recovery lies.
     
  9. I largely agree with you, to a point. The problem with honour is that it is either concieved by the honourable (their acts are by their nature honourable) or they are implanted onto something by a third party and claimed to be honourable? (The question of course being those who decide whether something is honourable has ever acted in an honourable way themselves?)

    So it is rightly said that a soldier who puts his own life at risk to safe another is honourable - an individual act of courage to protect another person.

    But when we look into politics, so Blair, what exactly is honourable? Lying about going to war is not honourable, but it could be argued that by taking an international lead against tryanny is honourable and like a person who may break regulations, if the end is right, who cares about the means?

    Its all about the perception and critically who it is that determines whether or not an act is honourable.

    Therefore to re-establish honour we need even greater feats of it (which in wider perception is true - you may hate the leaders but if the troops are doing a great job it almost makes up for it) but if say, it is political opposition who have created this sense that honour is now gone (or media or international rivals) we have to ask why do we think one society/government is honourable and another isn't, and whether our perceptions of it are influenced by less honourable means and practitioners then we would like to think.
     
  10. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    Blair doesn't understand history and/or foreign culture/beliefs as set out in the linked pdf, enough to make policy, let alone a policy that is not creating more and more trouble for the future. I posted yesterday about his (Blair) obvious cognitive biases, and I think 'we' may have been beginning to move away from 'our' historic mistakes/manipluations in the wider region, which directly lead to GWI, USS Cole, 911, etc.. The lack of long thought about reaction to 911 with Afganistan, GW2 and with T.W.O.T generally has backed us into a corner when it comes to choices.

    There needs to be a large rethink of policy toward the region. This isn't going to happen today as no one wishes to be seen to be appeasing AQ's agenda. But soon when the dust settles it will be seen that this belief system is widley held, and it is not monopolised by AQ type groups. There is going to have to be some waking to some uncomfortable truths. My fear is that those truths might be ignored as they will have become even less comfortable, and so the problems will increase and become more volatile.
     
  11. Is AQ's agenda as widespread as you say? What exactly is AQ's agenda? Depending on who you listen too it goes from a world caliphate to just getting the Americans out of the middle east.
    Leadership which has the world view and intellectual capacity to truly understand cause and effect is seriously lacking. Moral courage is constranted and cosidered an outdated idea for our modern political elite.
    When belief in some core priciples has been jettisoned in the desire for power how can we hope to truly engage with,debate and contest some of the ideas we consider extreme when we are seen as morally bankrupt?
     
  12. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    I think my point was that while AQ are presented as the main propagaters of the ideology, its not theirs. I do think that concepts of wider Arab (Muslim) political identity are widespread, certainly dating back to the origins of Pan Arabism if not well before. That said a Jordanian friend who worked with my wife in one of their embassies thought that it is a ridiculous concept and would never happen, however this is in direct contrast to my own experience of the 'Arab street'. I think many Arab Muslims (and quite a few Arab Christians) would love to be in a penisula that had some form of political unification, more actual autonomy, and less problems in the region; its not the Arab Street that is stopping it occur.

    Amen.
     
  13. Well at least someone has had the sense to listen to the man on the Terhan, Beirut and Bethlehem omnibus.

    It's true, we are seen as faithless. Not surprising that in two weeks captivity is seems that no one thought to ask for a vicar / priest even a Mullah to come in and run a service on Sundays.

    Eight hundered years ago we put them to the sword, thinking they were Godless. How must it look to them now?
     
  14. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    And 693 years ago the order (or two senior ranks) that mainly put them to the sword were put to the Torch for such utterances as 'Ya Allah' ;)

    Maybe things will turn out ok with a more detailed reading of history. There was some interesting stuff posted about St. George the other day, including that he is associated with Khidr, an Islamic figure. The Templar cross still flies it seems, veiling a skull and bones :twisted:
     
  15. So ironic that one hundred years ago the Ottoman empire looked to Europe as a model of progress and wished to emulate so much of what we had achieved.
    How do we develop a moral code which the wider western world wants to live by? Which would be respected by other cultures? Should we?