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Op Ed

Gaming Nexus - US Army vet discusses Six Days in Fallujah.
"I'm as patriotic as anyone else (note my Captain America belt buckle, and Purple Heart), but I think that the issues we face today in the 'war on terror,' both in the sphere of actual combat and the underlying social issues (how poverty and social dysfunction create an environment for radical Islam, for example), are certainly serious enough that they deserve an even-handed and measured treatment. Again, it's a maturity question: is the gaming community ready for a truly morally challenging and thought-provoking narrative? I'm not as sure as Konami apparently is."

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31 Replies. 2 pages. Viewing page 1.
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31. Re: Op Ed Apr 18, 2009, 12:07 Prez
 
No, "decent" as in it was grounded in facts and rational opinion, not boogey-man shock crap and empty rhetoric. You apparently don't understand the point of a "discussion", do you? If you did, that silly little tantrum you just threw wouldn't have been necessary.

EDIT: I don't mind your little hissy fits (a good things since you're sure to keep throwing them); they are the epitome of why I rarely bother to discuss anything of any import on the web. I wonder, does it help relieve stress to just continually throw out insults at people you don't know, or is it just boredom?

This comment was edited on Apr 18, 2009, 12:29.
 
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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30. Re: Op Ed Apr 18, 2009, 10:50 space captain
 
Well, at least it was a decent discussion for a while ...

"decent" as in: going the way you want it to?

gimme a fuckin break, guys - do you really think what you have to say is that important?

your diatribes are just as silly and pointless as mine.. you are just to self-involved to see it

thats ok, ride off in your zeppelins
 
Go forth, and kill!
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29. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 20:42 Prez
 
Well, at least it was a decent discussion for a while ... Rolleyes  
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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28. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 19:57 Zarkov
 
At best, the most well-intentioned insurgent is merely a useful idiot for terrorist masterminds to further their psychotic ideology.

I guess the same can be said for the U.S. troops operating under the Bush administration (and, unfortunately, onwards it seems).

How much terror will the million corpses piled up in Iraq, courtesy of the "Allied forces", bring forth in return?

Some 16 intelligence agencies warned the administration about it, but I guess they couldn't hear because of all the noise coming from the strings being pulled by the military industrial complex and "answers-to-no-one" think tanks.

But wait, now there's going to be "change"! ... just like all the other presidents have promised for the past 50 years or so.

How do we really determine who's on the "terrorist/thug" side of things? Well maybe civilian body count could be used?

 
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27. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 15:35 space captain
 
Either way, they're working to support a truly evil ideology through force and terror and must be stopped at almost any cost.

sounds like the Bush administration

you know whats also a truly evil ideology? one that destroys the habitable environment for temporary personal gain. how about one that restricts product recall in order to maximize profits, and considers lawsuit settlements of those killed by such products to be an acceptable loss

you holier than thou dumbfucks are gonna have some serious fun one of these days Flood
 
Go forth, and kill!
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26. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 15:16 space captain
 
This from a loser who can't even master rudimentary grammar skills. It would be funny if you weren't so pathetic, you American hating, terrorist loving piece of shit. You're the one heading to that special hell, jackoff. Have fun with Hussein and the rest of them, moron. If you had half a brain it'd die from lonlieness.

wah wah wah.. cry yourself all the way home, little piggy
 
Go forth, and kill!
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25. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 13:40 Cutter
 
Cutter on this point you are full of shit.

So was "Apocalypse Now" a a tasteless adventure in Capitalism? How about "Saving Private Ryan"??

Hey fucktard, Apocalypse Now was just a fictional story set in Vietnam. It was actually a updated derivative of Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness. Saving Private Ryan was a tribute to what the men of WWII suffered, it was in no way exploitive, you dumbass. And for the record Spielberg donated shitloads of the profits of that film to vets. And no, their main motivation wasn't the money. Major fucking differences here, learn them if you're capable.

you want to talk about a special hell? you are in it right now, you special person... so make the most of that pea-brain you got there and learn to enjoy it
your vision of america is the kind of thing that makes me want to puke on your bloated pig face

This from a loser who can't even master rudimentary grammar skills. It would be funny if you weren't so pathetic, you American hating, terrorist loving piece of shit. You're the one heading to that special hell, jackoff. Have fun with Hussein and the rest of them, moron. If you had half a brain it'd die from lonlieness.
 
Avatar 25394
 
"The South will boogie again!" - Disco Stu
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24. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 13:32 Trainwreck
 
I wasn't trying to suggest there was a total equivalency, merely a similarity of principle. The reality is, there is no way for the insurgency to fight the US in any convential format. They are out-gunned, and out-teched to such an extreme degree it's not funny. It's like the proverbial "showing up with a knife to a gun fight". So they are going to have to adopt tactics that allow them some chance of success.

My point is, I guess, that while you and I might question their tactics, I can identify with why they chose them. And since the original point was that there couldn't possibly be anything from the other side in terms of "perspective" to show, I think that I've demonstrated that there is, or, at least, could be.

I don't think that anyone can seriously begrudge the terrorists for practicing legitimate military tactics, like shelling our bases and setting up roadside bombs, so long as they're attacking valid targets. But let's not forget that those who do this are still acting against our interests and the interests of their countrymen and are instead only serving to further the cause of spreading terror and ultimately setting up a religious theocracy in their country.

At best, the most well-intentioned insurgent is merely a useful idiot for terrorist masterminds to further their psychotic ideology. But at worst? They're brutal terrorist thugs themselves. How many are closer to either extreme? I'd suspect most are closer to the "terrorist/thug" side of things, as truly freedom-minded individuals are more likely to join up with the Iraqi/Afghan security forces.

At the end of the day, it really doesn't matter how many members of these terrorist groups reach the lowest levels of human evil any more than it matters now how many German soldiers bought into Nazism. Either way, they're working to support a truly evil ideology through force and terror and must be stopped at almost any cost.
 
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23. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 13:11 Bhruic
 
The problem I have is all too often people who would specifically target civilians, non-military infrastructure, and critical services like hospitals for the express purpose of sowing fear and discourse get labeled as insurgents as well. This is so far from accurate as to be offensive. These are TERRORISTS.

I agree completely. The problem is with many people's inability to separate the groups. Some consider them all to be insurgents, others consider all of them to be terrorists. In both cases, that's sloppy thinking.

No one knows definitively how many honest to goodness freedom fighters were holed up in Fallujah in comparison to how many bloodthirsty terrorists were there, but I feel confident in saying that the most common mistake people make when discussing Fallujah is assuming that the latter group is anything but well represented on the "insurgent" side.

I don't have enough information to even make an educated guess. You may well be right. Even if so, however, it's the lumping together that I find objectionable. The Iraqi who's only there because he wants to fight the US invader does have a perspective to tell. And I think it's one that's very important to tell, because so many people, like some of the earlier posters in this thread, have concluded that anyone in Iraq that's fighting the US must be a terrorist.
 
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22. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 13:03 Prez
 
I wasn't trying to suggest there was a total equivalency, merely a similarity of principle. The reality is, there is no way for the insurgency to fight the US in any convential format. They are out-gunned, and out-teched to such an extreme degree it's not funny. It's like the proverbial "showing up with a knife to a gun fight". So they are going to have to adopt tactics that allow them some chance of success.

My point is, I guess, that while you and I might question their tactics, I can identify with why they chose them. And since the original point was that there couldn't possibly be anything from the other side in terms of "perspective" to show, I think that I've demonstrated that there is, or, at least, could be.

Very well said. I did not use the correct wording when I said your comparison was inaccurate; I rather meant to say that there was less of an equivalency than there might seem at first glance. I agree - the principle was indeed similar.

I have heard it stated that "if the insurgents were men, they'd fight the US out in the open!". You and I both know that this is laughably naive, for the reasons you stated. The insurgency prior to and after Fallujah focused on hit and run guerrilla tactics and roadside bombs, things that, while are dreadfully effective and deadly, are reasonable responses for someone with the perspective of the US being invaders.

The problem I have is all too often people who would specifically target civilians, non-military infrastructure, and critical services like hospitals for the express purpose of sowing fear and discourse get labeled as insurgents as well. This is so far from accurate as to be offensive. These are TERRORISTS. Now, I know that has become something of a dirty word nowadays because of its broad usage, but regardless of how much the term may or may not have become watered down, it still represents a very real and very despicable group of people who have been operating within Iraq since the beginning of the insurgency whose sole goal was creating instability and fear at a critical time in Iraq for their own purposes.

No one knows definitively how many honest to goodness freedom fighters were holed up in Fallujah in comparison to how many bloodthirsty terrorists were there, but I feel confident in saying that the most common mistake people make when discussing Fallujah is assuming that the latter group is anything but well represented on the "insurgent" side.
 
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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21. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 12:48 Bhruic
 
However, the comparison between the Fallujah occupiers and the French resistance is not accurate. The French resistance hid among the civilians as a method of going undetected. By comparison, the Fallujah insurgents brandished their weapons openly and clearly and openly availed themselves as the controllers of the city, daring the US to attack them(as seen in any newscast). The French resistance did not openly claim control of any city, nor did they perform their actions -in anything but a clandestine manner.

I wasn't trying to suggest there was a total equivalency, merely a similarity of principle. The reality is, there is no way for the insurgency to fight the US in any convential format. They are out-gunned, and out-teched to such an extreme degree it's not funny. It's like the proverbial "showing up with a knife to a gun fight". So they are going to have to adopt tactics that allow them some chance of success.

My point is, I guess, that while you and I might question their tactics, I can identify with why they chose them. And since the original point was that there couldn't possibly be anything from the other side in terms of "perspective" to show, I think that I've demonstrated that there is, or, at least, could be.
 
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20. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 12:36 Prez
 
I generally agree with your point 1, so I'll leave that one alone. But this one is unsupportable. Look at what the French resistance did in WWII. They "hid" behind civilians because that was necessary to further the resistance. Yes, it put the civilians in danger, and yes, many civilians were killed because of it. But it also helped end the German occupation.

For many an Iraqi, the US has invaded and conquered their country. The US might cloak it in terms of "liberation" and giving them "freedom", but many of them simply see US soldiers occupying their country. Wanting to fight back against an invading force is, imo, entirely justifiable. And as with WWII, sometimes that means putting civilians in harms way, knowing that they are going to die. You might disapprove of that, and I'm certainly not going to convince you it's a good thing. But I do think it can be justified.

You make a fair point. It is easy to understand that many Iraqi's viewed the US as oppressors and occupiers, so I don't begrudge the very existence of an insurgency. Indeed, an insurgency was presented as a real possibility at a war-planning meeting attended by Rumsfeld prior to the invasion. (Apparently in all his wisdom he did not view it as a likely possibility - so yeah the guy was a tool) However, the comparison between the Fallujah occupiers and the French resistance is not accurate. The French resistance hid among the civilians as a method of going undetected. By comparison, the Fallujah insurgents brandished their weapons openly and clearly and openly availed themselves as the controllers of the city, daring the US to attack them(as seen in any newscast). The French resistance did not openly claim control of any city, which one has to realize would have been a death sentence for themselves and anyone in that city, nor did they perform their actions in anything but a clandestine manner.

This comment was edited on Apr 17, 2009, 12:49.
 
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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19. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 12:28 Bhruic
 
2) Fallujah was the battleground because the "insurgents" likely chose it specifically because of the high number of human shields on hand in such a place. Guerrilla warfare against a superior force is one thing. Hiding behind civilians for protection is another thing entirely.

I generally agree with your point 1, so I'll leave that one alone. But this one is unsupportable. Look at what the French resistance did in WWII. They "hid" behind civilians because that was necessary to further the resistance. Yes, it put the civilians in danger, and yes, many civilians were killed because of it. But it also helped end the German occupation.

For many an Iraqi, the US has invaded and conquered their country. The US might cloak it in terms of "liberation" and giving them "freedom", but many of them simply see US soldiers occupying their country. Wanting to fight back against an invading force is, imo, entirely justifiable. And as with WWII, sometimes that means putting civilians in harms way, knowing that they are going to die. You might disapprove of that, and I'm certainly not going to convince you it's a good thing. But I do think it can be justified.
 
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18. Re: So many lies! Apr 17, 2009, 12:10 nin
 

Jose = Woody, Prez, don't waste your time...

 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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17. Re: So many lies! Apr 17, 2009, 12:04 Prez
 
Sorry Jose, the part of your post that was directed at me had too little substance for me to even bother to discuss. What little you have is factually incorrect and completely devoid of information. You have to bring a little more to the table.

This comment was edited on Apr 17, 2009, 12:05.
 
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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16. So many lies! Apr 17, 2009, 11:59 Jose
 
Trainwreck keeps going on about how Iraqis blow up weddings. He has it backwards. It is the USA that blows up weddings, as 10 seconds on Google proves.

Report: US Strike Kills 11 at Iraqi Wedding
http://www.commondreams.org/headlines04/1008-06.htm

Afghan government says 47 civilians killed when US bombed wedding party
http://www.rawa.org/temp/runews/rawanews.php?id=664

US Strike Kills 40 at Wedding: Afghans
http://www.newser.com/story/41855/us-strike-kills-40-at-wedding-afghans.html

US strike on wedding party in Afghanistan kills 36 civilians injures 28 again. (update 95 killed)
http://morris108.wordpress.com/2008/11/05/us-strike-on-wedding-party-in-afghanistan-kills-36-civilians-injurs-28-again-2/

That was just the first four. There are more.

-----------------------------

As for Prez.....I mean really, get real.

Prez: "Fallujah was the battleground because the "insurgents" likely chose it specifically because of the high number of human shields on hand in such a place."

The only people that use human shields are Israelis. Go look at the picture and see for yourself.

"Israeli human rights activists have accused border police of using a 13-year-old Palestinian as a human shield.

Rabbis for Human Rights say that Mohammed Badwan was tied by police to a jeep during a recent demonstration in the West Bank village of Bidou."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/3650791.stm
 
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15. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 11:44 space captain
 
legitimacy to the notion that gamers have difficulty distinguishing between reality and fantasy or good and evil. It's ridiculous.

whats ridiculous is the fact that you cant see the massive and stark difference between the things you have compared.. reality and fantasy is fact v.s fiction .. good or evil is a matter of opinion and depends on which god you pray to, where you live, how much money you have, etc. etc. etc. etc.

you retards that think morality is some sort of objective fact need to get a grip and come back to planet earth for a minute or two.. morals are extremely conditional SUBJECTIVE perspectives, dependent on a number of personal variables
 
Go forth, and kill!
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14. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 11:26 Prez
 
I'm a little surprised - this topic hasn't devolved into another bash-fest of evil America. It even has a few cogent posts in it!

I'm not sure where the idea came from that people feel that any game that doesn't portray US Soldiers as saints is taboo. The reason that some of us find this release in bad taste has nothing to do with that. I think it's time for the myth, that if you are pro-US or pro-military, that somehow you lack the perspective or clarity to understand that neither is perfect, to be dispensed with. Are there blind jingoist supporters of just about anything? Sure. In gaming, we call them 'fanboys'. But it is inaccurate to declare someone 'American fanboy' or a 'military fanboy' simply by virtue of their reservations about this game.

The things that bother me about this game specifically are:
1) It is disrespectful to make a game out of a specific battle, using actual events, places and presumably names that occurred so recently that it is entirely conceivable that those who lost someone or were wounded in that battle may very well still simply be trying to cope. It's simply too fresh; the feelings and after-affects are just too raw. There hasn't been time for the knowledge of what has happened to be assimilated into the psyche in such a way that it can be absorbed strictly on an objective basis. To that end, the 9/11 movie was distasteful and inappropriate in my opinion.

2) Fallujah was the battleground because the "insurgents" likely chose it specifically because of the high number of human shields on hand in such a place. Guerrilla warfare against a superior force is one thing. Hiding behind civilians for protection is another thing entirely. It's a win-win for them. If the high volume of civilians in their midst causes the enemy not to attack out of fear of non-combatant casualties, they have effectively "won" without firing a shot. If they are attacked, it is inevitable that there will be a high volume of civilian casualties, causing the attacker to be demonized for their actions and the defenders to gain sympathy, regardless of the fact that they chose the ground in full knowledge that any battle would kill innocents. Hezbollah did this to masterful effect in the Israel-Lebanon conflict recently. I wonder if anyone takes this into account when they are trying to "see the battle from both perspectives". Personally, people who would knowingly and deliberately put civilians in the crossfire for personal advantage and protection are not the ones I'd be consulting for true information.

It should be noted I do not support an outright ban of this or any game, no matter how tasteless. I would rather appeal to the developer's and publisher's sense of good taste and respect.

This comment was edited on Apr 17, 2009, 11:36.
 
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“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
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13. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 10:31 Trainwreck
 
The U.S. could have been heroes in Iraq, after all they took down Saddam Hussein. All they had to do was leave after that was acomplished.

Right, and the let the country descend into massive civil war, with no certain future for the democratic/representative government that is now in place? Yeah, let's just hand it to the Islamic radicals, that's smart.

Yeah, there are scum-of-the-earth terrorists fighting in Iraq. But there are also Iraqi citizens who are fighting a foreign invader that has taken over their country. It's really easy to lump everyone into the same category and dismiss them, but that ease doesn't make it true.

I'm only lumping in those who are attacking us and their fellow Iraqi citizens. Those people are, quite frankly, the scum-of-the-earth. You see, these terrorist organizations are/were operating against us there because they wish to see Iraq become a theocratic totalitarian state.

If you'll notice, they attack their fellow citizens (read: non-combatants) far more often than they attack us. They bomb police stations, they bomb weddings, they shoot up marketplaces, they oppress women and religious minorities and anyone who doesn't fall into line with them wherever they have enough power to do so.

So again, I wonder: what possible viewpoint of theirs could possibly be legitimate? There is none. That we're even having this debate is making me wonder if there isn't some legitimacy to the notion that gamers have difficulty distinguishing between reality and fantasy or good and evil. It's ridiculous.

This comment was edited on Apr 17, 2009, 10:34.
 
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12. Re: Op Ed Apr 17, 2009, 10:18 Bhruic
 
I love how people say, "Oh this can show both perspectives!" as if the other side had a worthwhile perspective to explore. Yeah, if only you could play a terrorist who had to bomb a wedding or try to kill as many Iraqi police officers as possible. Or play the Al-Qaeda-in-Iraq scum who cut limbs off of children in front of their parents as punishment for the parents' non-cooperation.

I see, so we can conclude that all Americans are pathetic terrorits who like to drive truck bombs into federal buildings? Or that they like to get their gun collection, and go shoot up imigration offices?

Yeah, there are scum-of-the-earth terrorists fighting in Iraq. But there are also Iraqi citizens who are fighting a foreign invader that has taken over their country. It's really easy to lump everyone into the same category and dismiss them, but that ease doesn't make it true.
 
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