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-   -   Why does the US owe Afghan allies? (http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=353758)

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 07:44 AM

Why does the US owe Afghan allies?
 
There is this statement I see everywhere that the US owes Afghans who provided aid, and that part of it is paid through emigration.

Framing it as them being owed is odd. How does one know that? How does one make that claim and demonstrate it? Once we broach the subject of who is owed what, I'm not sure how one calculates it. Do you know that they haven't been sufficiently compensated....or even that they owe America more because the US overpaid?


How does one actually rationally and reasonably resolve the question?

(and I guess people mean the US government when they say the US)

Mike! 24th August 2021 08:22 AM

It's sort of like the witness relocation program. They provided a service for the U.S. that now puts them, and their families, lives in danger were they to remain there. That's why it's being said it's "Owed them".

crescent 24th August 2021 08:36 AM

Like Mike said - we are not "paying them through immigration". We are providing for their safety. That's different.

Had we "won", or at least if the Taliban had not taken full control, we would not be relocating most of these people.

We recognize that the Western Coalition needed Afghans to work for them, the U.S. and allies could not function without interpreters and local experts (and language training to fluency takes years, longer than the basic term of service in the military, such that training our own people and only using them to do it would create a significant bottleneck).

We also recognize that working for us had potential to place our Afghan employees and partners at risk, such that we would have difficulty getting enough to work for us if we didn't provide some sort of safety guarantee. This guarantee could take one of two forms:
1: We win. They stay free and safe in their own country.
2: We don't win, in which case we move them to where they can be free and safe, even if it is not Afghanistan. Keep in mind that many of the relocated Afghans, possibly even the majority, are not coming to America. Many are going to end up in Europe or Arab nations.

We didn't win, so we're going with option #2.

jollyroger85 24th August 2021 08:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crescent (Post 13579048)
Like Mike said - we are not "paying them through immigration". We are providing for their safety. That's different.

Had we "won", or at least if the Taliban had not taken full control, we would not be relocating most of these people.

We recognize that the Western Coalition needed Afghans to work for them, the U.S. and allies could not function without interpreters and local experts (and language training to fluency takes years, longer than the basic term of service in the military, such that training our own people and only using them to do it would create a significant bottleneck).

We also recognize that working for us had potential to place our Afghan employees and partners at risk, such that we would have difficulty getting enough to work for us if we didn't provide some sort of safety guarantee. This guarantee could take one of two forms:
1: We win. They stay free and safe in their own country.
2: We don't win, in which case we move them to where they can be free and safe, even if it is not Afghanistan. Keep in mind that many of the relocated Afghans, possibly even the majority, are not coming to America. Many are going to end up in Europe or Arab nations.

We didn't win, so we're going with option #2.

We never were going to win, just like the Brits and the Russians before us. 2/3s of the country arent urban and live by the tribal system of Pashtunwali (google it), and have for a very long time. They may be fine with the west coming in to builld roads etc, but they don't necessarily want democracy, on a more generic not, the US in particular is terrible at Nation Building in this part of the world.

crescent 24th August 2021 08:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jollyroger85 (Post 13579061)
We never were going to win, just like the Brits and the Russians before us. 2/3s of the country arent urban and live by the tribal system of Pashtunwali (google it), and have for a very long time. They may be fine with the west coming in to builld roads etc, but they don't necessarily want democracy, on a more generic not, the US in particular is terrible at Nation Building in this part of the world.

Captain Obvious is obvious - everything you write is true. None of it changes the accuracy of what I wrote.

jollyroger85 24th August 2021 09:17 AM

deleted dupe post, my bad.

We didn't win, so we're going with option #2.[/quote]

We never were going to win, just like the Brits and the Russians before us. 2/3s of the country arent urban and live by the tribal system of Pashtunwali (google it), and have for a very long time. They may be fine with the west coming in to builld roads etc, but they don't necessarily want democracy, on a more generic not, the US in particular is terrible at Nation Building in this part of the world.

jollyroger85 24th August 2021 09:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crescent (Post 13579067)
Captain Obvious is obvious - everything you write is true. None of it changes the accuracy of what I wrote.

I wasn't saying it wasn't true, your response is a bit "taken personally"...

Sideroxylon 24th August 2021 09:27 AM

If you have to step down a few rungs of Kohlberg’s ladder, abandoning your allies to the mercy of your mutual enemies, you will find it harder to win allies next time.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 09:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sideroxylon (Post 13579095)
If you have to step down a few rungs of Kohlbergís ladder, ďIf you abandon your allies to the mercy of your mutual enemies, you will find it harder to win allies next time.Ē

But that isn't to owe something. That is a decision to accomplish a task for it's own benefit.

Olmstead 24th August 2021 09:37 AM

Because that's the tacit agreement regardless of the value exchange.

Technically no one "owes" anyone anything until you make a detailed and omniscient account of every exchange two parties have had. Remember that time I gave you a ride? Knock a few dollars off for that.

For some reason most people don't use lanugage that way.

Sideroxylon 24th August 2021 09:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579098)
But that isn't to owe something. That is a decision to accomplish a task for it's own benefit.

Correct and my point. You need a deontological framing to see the situation in that way. At the aforementioned level you won’t see the moral imperative of repaying the loyalty of those who joined your cause and risked their lives for you.

sackett 24th August 2021 09:45 AM

Bob, there really is such a concept as common decency. You can even call it something that we owe to other people.

Behaving decently has a good, hard-headed payoff, too: Afterwards, you can live with yourself.

I hope you'll ignore this post.

Ziggurat 24th August 2021 09:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sideroxylon (Post 13579104)
Correct and my point. You need a deontological framing to see the situation in that way. At the aforementioned level you wonít see the moral imperative of repaying the loyalty of those who joined your cause and risked their lives for you.

Bob doesn't care about morals. I'm not sure he cares about anything except a bizarre sort of pedantry.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 10:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sackett (Post 13579107)
Bob, there really is such a concept as common decency. You can even call it something that we owe to other people.

Behaving decently has a good, hard-headed payoff, too: Afterwards, you can live with yourself.

I hope you'll ignore this post.

Well that just raises the question how do you know it is the decent thing.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 10:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sideroxylon (Post 13579104)
Correct and my point. You need a deontological framing to see the situation in that way. At the aforementioned level you won’t see the moral imperative of repaying the loyalty of those who joined your cause and risked their lives for you.

There is a jump from you having a moral imperative from them having helped you, to what that action should be. Like how does one know the moral imperative calls for relocation and that all the other investments are insufficient?

sackett 24th August 2021 10:16 AM

I just washed my hands
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579126)
Well that just raises the question how do you know it is the decent thing.

No, Bob, the question is how do you recognize decency.

Now I'll have to wash them again.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 10:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sackett (Post 13579132)
No, Bob, the question is how do you recognize decency.

Now I'll have to wash them again.

I'm not being facetious when I say I have no opinion on that.

As soon as someone asks how one knows what someone is owed or what is decency, I have no idea. I can muddle through, but it certainly isn't supported by enough evidence and argument to assert I have a position on it

Darat 24th August 2021 10:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13578982)
There is this statement I see everywhere that the US owes Afghans who provided aid, and that part of it is paid through emigration.

Framing it as them being owed is odd. How does one know that? How does one make that claim and demonstrate it? Once we broach the subject of who is owed what, I'm not sure how one calculates it. Do you know that they haven't been sufficiently compensated....or even that they owe America more because the US overpaid?


How does one actually rationally and reasonably resolve the question?

(and I guess people mean the US government when they say the US)

Itís called a contract.

Sideroxylon 24th August 2021 10:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579127)
There is a jump from you having a moral imperative from them having helped you, to what that action should be. Like how does one know the moral imperative calls for relocation and that all the other investments are insufficient?

Having pointed at the Kantian framing* in which America owes their Afghan allies, addressing your thread question, I will bow out of this obtuse game with shifting goal posts.

*Less formally, you might just call it common decency or doing the right thing.

carlitos 24th August 2021 10:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579139)
I'm not being facetious when I say I have no opinion on that.

As soon as someone asks how one knows what someone is owed or what is decency, I have no idea. I can muddle through, but it certainly isn't supported by enough evidence and argument to assert I have a position on it

Yeah, these words in English that we all use, they can be so tough to pretend not to understand sometimes.

Sideroxylon 24th August 2021 11:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13578982)
There is this statement I see everywhere that the US owes Afghans who provided aid, and that part of it is paid through emigration.

Framing it as them being owed is odd. How does one know that? How does one make that claim and demonstrate it? Once we broach the subject of who is owed what, I'm not sure how one calculates it. Do you know that they haven't been sufficiently compensated....or even that they owe America more because the US overpaid?


How does one actually rationally and reasonably resolve the question?

(and I guess people mean the US government when they say the US)

This looks like the language and framing of someone taking a utilitarian ethical approach. Itís a different conceptual game to the deontological one you are questioning. You are asking football rule questions about baseball.

Neither ethical approach has been able to bear the weight of deep scrutiny of their foundation or rigour in coherence that you seem to often ask for. Better to look at them as unaware subjective aesthetic stances we take and often without exclusivity.

jollyroger85 24th August 2021 11:13 AM

Interestingly, many in the cities "have a Taliban commander on speed dial" to handle run ins with them, so how much long term confidence did these folks have in the US backed government anyway? They were playing both sides to cover their butts.

Not sure how truthful, but https://nypost.com/2021/08/19/what-t...n-afghan-city/

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 11:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sideroxylon (Post 13579202)
. Better to look at them as unaware subjective aesthetic stances we take and often without exclusivity.

Cool!

But I receive a lot of confident answers in this thread that belie the position of unaware subjective aesthetic. Or am I misinterpreting?

Bob001 24th August 2021 11:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13578982)
There is this statement I see everywhere that the US owes Afghans who provided aid, and that part of it is paid through emigration.

Framing it as them being owed is odd. How does one know that? How does one make that claim and demonstrate it? Once we broach the subject of who is owed what, I'm not sure how one calculates it. Do you know that they haven't been sufficiently compensated....or even that they owe America more because the US overpaid?
....

You don't seem to grasp that the Taliban is likely to kill the interpreters and other Afghans who helped U.S. soldiers, and the U.S. combat veterans who depended on them are at the forefront of efforts to save them. Yeah, when people risk their lives to help us, we owe them more than a handshake.
https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/22/asia/...hnk/index.html
https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/02/polit...sia/index.html

Sideroxylon 24th August 2021 11:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579231)
Cool!

But I receive a lot of confident answers in this thread that belie the position of unaware subjective aesthetic. Or am I misinterpreting?

Yes, there are some who don’t acknowledge that but in our day-to-day interactions that is the way we all function. We might be fallibilists or naive essentialists but the lack of rigorous foundation or internal coherence doesn’t matter until we start talking past each other while playing different conceptual games.

crescent 24th August 2021 12:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jollyroger85 (Post 13579205)
Interestingly, many in the cities "have a Taliban commander on speed dial" to handle run ins with them, so how much long term confidence did these folks have in the US backed government anyway? They were playing both sides to cover their butts.

Not sure how truthful, but https://nypost.com/2021/08/19/what-t...n-afghan-city/

I think that might be almost normal in a civil war.

I lived in Nepal during the earliest days of that nation's civil war - the Maoist rebels controlled parts of two (very rural) districts (out of 27), and were active in two others, just a tiny fraction of the population lived in those areas. They controlled no large towns or major roads. Everywhere else it was just some propaganda and outreach, an occasional protest march.

But even then everyone knew someone who was part of the Maoist organization. They had cells like many resistance movements and nearly everyone seemed to know at least one person who was a member of one, or knew someone who had packed up and moved to join the Maoists in areas where there was fighting.

Civil wars can be terrible like that - everyone is fighting people they know, people they used to be friends and neighbors with. They don't always have the geography-based sides like the American civil war had.

I'm guessing that's how Afghanistan is.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 12:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sideroxylon (Post 13579252)
Yes, there are some who donít acknowledge that but in our day-to-day interactions that is the way we all function. We might be fallibilists or naive essentialists but the lack of rigorous foundation or internal coherence doesnít matter until we start talking past each other while playing different conceptual games.

This is why I said a few posts back that I'm just muddling through.

Stacyhs 24th August 2021 12:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by acbytesla (Post 13579288)
Edited by zooterkin:  <SNIP>
Edited for rule 12.
.

:thumbsup:

There are credible reports that the Taliban is now executing people. Looks like the 'kinder and gentler' ( :rolleyes: ) Taliban they claimed to be is a lie that nobody is surprised by. We can expect a crap load more executions from them. And anyone asks why we 'owe' the Afghans who put their lives in danger to work for us? Laughable.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 12:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Stacyhs (Post 13579296)
:thumbsup:

There are credible reports that the Taliban is now executing people. Looks like the 'kinder and gentler' ( :rolleyes: ) Taliban they claimed to be is a lie that nobody is surprised by. We can expect a crap load more executions from them. And anyone asks why we 'owe' the Afghans who put their lives in danger to work for us? Laughable.

Why would they be owed more than they have received? Are they owed more? Are they owed less? How do you know?

Saying they are being executed doesn't answer the question.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 12:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dudalb (Post 13579276)
Bob is probalby a huge Ayn Rand fan, which means caring about other people is evil, which is the core of Rand's philosophy.

I'm accepting the premise that the people were owed something. I have no clue what they would be owed, though.

Sideroxylon I think gave a great answer. It is everyone else's confidence in their position I don't get.

Bob001 24th August 2021 01:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579307)
I'm accepting the premise that the people were owed something. I have no clue what they would be owed, though.
....

Their lives, for starters.

Stacyhs 24th August 2021 01:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579304)
Why would they be owed more than they have received? Are they owed more? Are they owed less? How do you know?

Saying they are being executed doesn't answer the question.

When someone literally puts their lives on the line to help you when asked, you owe them the same. If you have to have that explained to you, as you have had, but keep asking, then there's nothing I can say to get through to you. All we'll get is more sealioning. I'm out.

shemp 24th August 2021 01:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579304)
Why would they be owed more than they have received? Are they owed more? Are they owed less? How do you know?

Saying they are being executed doesn't answer the question.

Why did your parents owe you anything? Why didn't they just toss you out into the street when you were born? This is just another of your Ayn Rand games. Helping anyone is evil and destructive. We get it.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 01:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shemp (Post 13579328)
Why did your parents owe you anything? Why didn't they just toss you out into the street when you were born? This is just another of your Ayn Rand games.

Ayn Rand would have an argument on what she thinks someone is owed.

I have no opinion on the question. As I said, I fully admit that any option I would have selected would be me muddling through. I would have no idea if the choice I made was the right one.

shemp 24th August 2021 01:28 PM

BobTheCoward is right! We owe them nothing! We should never have gotten involved in the first place! Our response to 9/11 should have been to shrug our shoulders and say "It's the victims' faults for getting on a plane or showing up for work that day!". We should have thanked Osama bin Laden for reminding us that helping anyone or avenging anyone's death is foolish and self-destructive! Let the Afghans who helped us die! It's for their own good! It will teach them a lesson! They will learn only to rely on themselves!

shemp 24th August 2021 01:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579332)
Ayn Rand would have an argument on what she thinks someone is owed.

I have no opinion on the question. As I said, I fully admit that any option I would have selected would be me muddling through. I would have no idea if the choice I made was the right one.

I doubt you see any difference between right and wrong, nor is it likely that it would matter to you if you did. You seem to me like the ultimate moral relativist; only the outcome matters.

Your turn.

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 01:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shemp (Post 13579336)
BobTheCoward is right! We owe them nothing! We should never have gotten involved in the first place! Our response to 9/11 should have been to shrug our shoulders and say "It's the victims' faults for getting on a plane or showing up for work that day!". We should have thanked Osama bin Laden for reminding us that helping anyone or avenging anyone's death is foolish and self-destructive! Let the Afghans who helped us die! It's for their own good! It will teach them a lesson! They will learn only to rely on themselves!

It is quite a jump from asking what they are owed to saying they are not owed something.

It also seems like an issue that obviously lends itself to interpreting it as beneficial to evacuate them, regardless of what they are owed. So I don't understand why people would get into the murkier question of what they are owed.

shemp 24th August 2021 01:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13578982)
There is this statement I see everywhere that the US owes Afghans who provided aid, and that part of it is paid through emigration.

Framing it as them being owed is odd. How does one know that? How does one make that claim and demonstrate it? Once we broach the subject of who is owed what, I'm not sure how one calculates it. Do you know that they haven't been sufficiently compensated....or even that they owe America more because the US overpaid?


How does one actually rationally and reasonably resolve the question?

(and I guess people mean the US government when they say the US)

Quote:

Originally Posted by BobTheCoward (Post 13579345)
It is quite a jump from asking what they are owed to saying they are not owed something.

It also seems like an issue that obviously lends itself to interpreting it as beneficial to evacuate them, regardless of what they are owed. So I don't understand why people would get into the murkier question of what they are owed.

Because you asked it in the first place? Please tell us how you didn't ask the question, when you clearly broached the subject. Or is this just another exercise in moving the goalposts?

BobTheCoward 24th August 2021 02:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shemp (Post 13579346)
Because you asked it in the first place? Please tell us how you didn't ask the question, when you clearly broached the subject. Or is this just another exercise in moving the goalposts?

I asked based on my perception that people frame it that way. Based on the replies to that post, people do seem to frame it that way. Based on replies, no one seems to think the framing is some novel idea raised by my question.

Warp12 24th August 2021 02:24 PM

Well, they are probably owed more than they are getting/going to get from the Biden administration, at this rate. Unless we can somehow get it all done within the next week, that is. The Taliban regime is calling the shots now, apparently.


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