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ethan's Musing on the Near East - Page 12

post #166 of 2698
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post

rotflmao.gif

Islamic State ‏@ISIS_Med  13m13 minutes ago

Since Shami [Witness] was arrested: We lost Sinjar We lost Mosul countryside We lost Kobane

recruitment is also waining ...

post #167 of 2698
Thread Starter 
That child Tamimi is trying to argue that Kobani was still a net win for isis. As an American I reject the entire theory of a good loss. As a thinker the strategic importance of having access points through Kurdland in the West Central and East is not to be underestimated.
post #168 of 2698
What happens now to the millions the US poured into Yemeni armed forces ? Just rely on metadata for targeted drone strikes ? 3 killed today in the first strike since president stepped down, one 12 year old among the 3 IDed militants.
post #169 of 2698
Thread Starter 

I think the strategy in Yemen is going to be whack-a-mole for a while. Oy so much failure everywhere. Pictures of that woman who was shot in the back in Egypt broke my heart. Egyptian authoritarianism gave the world Zawahiri, who else is in the pipeline? 

post #170 of 2698
Thread Starter 

Of all the shitty situations and half-victories at least there is this for now. I'm looking forward to the refugees reclaiming their city. 

 

post #171 of 2698
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post

This is a pretty great article about Arab cultural traits that lead to ineffective militaries: http://www.meforum.org/441/why-arabs-lose-wars

Dude, that's an insult to social studies. Americans can't finish wars because they're too busy eating burgers. See I wrote a great article about American cultural traits that lead to failing to occupy people properly (and getting obese to boot). Maybe recommending the middle east forum and Benny Morris is just helping your public to keep thinking exactly what they were thinking before...

Note: thread is nice and I like getting the updates because I just read mid/long term updates about this so tweet style comments every day are A+
Edited by Fuuma - 1/26/15 at 7:51pm
post #172 of 2698
The main barrier to "Arab" military effectiveness is probably that most of them are just poor and do it for the paycheck. Those who are highly motivated are probably so out of religious ideology more than patriotism in the ME, and thus are more likely to become an extremist militant than join the armed forces. They aren't Arab, but take a look at the ANA: A bunch of slack-jawed drug addicts who are mostly there to steal things and sell them, with the very occasional highly motivated and trained officer. Combine that with corruption which is endemic in most countries and you get a bunch of conniving officers and bumbling PT Baileys for infantry. Not a recipe for success, whether it's cultural or not.
post #173 of 2698
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuuma View Post


Dude, that's an insult to social studies. Americans can't finish wars because they're too busy eating burgers. See I wrote a great article about American cultural traits that lead to failing to occupy people properly (and getting obese to boot). Maybe recommending the middle east forum and Benny Morris is just helping your public to keep thinking exactly what they were thinking before...

Note: thread is nice and I like getting the updates because I just read mid/long term updates about this so tweet style comments every day are A+


So tell me, how many Arab troops have you worked with personally? I wouldn't have posted it if I didn't observe some of the same things more than a decade after the article was written. Benny Morris I'm not going to touch because everybody has their opinion but I also recommended Patrick Seale who would have told you every war was engineered by Israel specifically to humiliate the Arabs. Everybody is guilty in the Middle East. 

post #174 of 2698
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post


So tell me, how many Arab troops have you worked with personally? I wouldn't have posted it if I didn't observe some of the same things more than a decade after the article was written. Benny Morris I'm not going to touch because everybody has their opinion but I also recommended Patrick Seale who would have told you every war was engineered by Israel specifically to humiliate the Arabs. Everybody is guilty in the Middle East. 

Bad sociology is bad sociology, even allowing for certain things being true there could be several other explanations, it could be untrue for most Arabs, it could be due to the author and you being American etc. I'm pretty much stating the obvious here btw.
post #175 of 2698
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuuma View Post


Bad sociology is bad sociology, even allowing for certain things being true there could be several other explanations, it could be untrue for most Arabs, it could be due to the author and you being American etc. I'm pretty much stating the obvious here btw.


Calling something bad is all well and good but I welcome you to refute specific points. 

post #176 of 2698
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post


Calling something bad is all well and good but I welcome you to refute specific points. 

There are no arguments being put forward, this is simply an opinion piece treated as something more. However you can detect the Pipesism behind it: little comments about fuckyeahamerica! and a refutation of any explanations using social class or other transcultural factors. Once again americans can't occupy other countries because they eat too many hamburgers.

I guess the article could be renamed: "The subjective experience of being American in Egypt and a few other places."
post #177 of 2698
Thread Starter 

Right, so you haven't been in the military, worked with the military, or worked with Arab militaries, so this guy's opinion is useless because he's just an American talking about how not-American Arabs are. Thanks. 

post #178 of 2698
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post

Right, so you haven't been in the military, worked with the military, or worked with Arab militaries, so this guy's opinion is useless because he's just an American talking about how not-American Arabs are. Thanks. 

Pretty much, I don't see how being in the military or interracting with them can give you any causal explanation on why "arabs" act a certain way and why culture is the driving force for this. This should be blatantly obvious to anyone who a university degree so it's pretty lame you'd say that.
post #179 of 2698
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuuma View Post


Pretty much, I don't see how being in the military or interracting with them can give you any causal explanation on why "arabs" act a certain way and why culture is the driving force for this. This should be blatantly obvious to anyone who a university degree so it's pretty lame you'd say that.


Because you can draw parallels throughout Arab governments. The Palestineans were never organized and continue to lack administrative skills and know how to accomplish their goals, Saudi's bureaucracy was basically entirely set up by American NGOs and corporations and is still not optimally run, politics permeate all levels of every Arab officer corps, and class divisions are present in all Arab militaries. 

 

Where else to look than common Arab cultural traits?

post #180 of 2698
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post


Because you can draw parallels throughout Arab governments. The Palestineans were never organized and continue to lack administrative skills and know how to accomplish their goals, Saudi's bureaucracy was basically entirely set up by American NGOs and corporations and is still not optimally run, politics permeate all levels of every Arab officer corps, and class divisions are present in all Arab militaries. 

Where else to look than common Arab cultural traits?

As I'm sure you already know, "the arab mind" is a very popular work in military circles but it is deeply flawed. I'm certainly not an expert on ME cultures or whatever, although I do regularly travel and deal with arabs, something that isn't really indicative of any knowledge I may possess. Let me just post a short article and leave it at that, thread doesn't deserve a derail and I'm sure 99% don't care about such conversations. I guess the best advice I can give (anfd I am sure you'll agree) is to research a little about the publications and authors you're reading regarding and try to pick up some divergent opinions.

"Patai's work is emblematic of a bygone era of scholarship focused on the notion of a "national character," or personality archetype. (A longtime resident of Jerusalem, he also penned a book titled "The Jewish Mind.") For such scholars, a set of sweeping generalizations about the personality of an entire people could be extrapolated from dubious anecdotal and literary references. In Patai's case, his methodology was itself based on a fatally flawed set of assumptions -- most importantly, that there is one entirely homogenous Arab culture, derived from nomadic Bedouin culture. This ignores both the diversity and history of a people and civilization that extends across dozens of countries, from the Indian Ocean to the Atlantic, and the deeply rooted Arab culture of cities and agricultural communities."


http://www.monabaker.com/pMachine/more.php?id=A2057_0_1_0_M
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