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The Forum > Article Comments > 'Anzac', 'cyber' and 'drone' are all five-letter words > Comments

'Anzac', 'cyber' and 'drone' are all five-letter words : Comments

By David Stephens, published 30/7/2013

Our willingness to accept new forms of warfare can be reinforced by the sanitised remembrance of past conflicts.

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The author writes: "One way of distancing combatants from targets and thus saving lives, at least on the attacking side is by using drones (euphemistically known as unmanned aerial vehicles) armed with missiles or laser-guided bombs. The United States has used armed drones frequently in Pakistan and other war zones and so have Israel in Gaza and the United Kingdom in Afghanistan. Other countries are lining up to follow suit. The use of armed drones seems to be inevitable for any defence force that takes itself seriously, raising the prospect (noted by Joe Camilleri) of a "drones race" to rival the nuclear race of the previous century."

He points out in the above that drones are euphemistically known as unmanned aerial vehicles. The euphemisms that the militarists employ to sanitise the killing process are rife, and the author has fallen into the trap. He refers to the military as a 'defence force'. That is a key euphemism. If all the armed forces were truly defence forces there would be no wars as nobody would attack. It might help to stop using the euphemism, defence force, for military organisations that may in addition to defend also attack, occupy, threaten or employ either force or the threat of force in many ways.
Posted by david f, Tuesday, 30 July 2013 9:03:29 AM
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I don't have any comment to make on the use of drones, but David's analysis is completely the wrong way around. He says we are more likely to tolerate the use of drones because of the glorification of past wars. Nope! the reason drones are tolerated is because governments, and their voters, don't want to get involved in wars, or risk soldiers on the ground. They also want to get rid of terrorists in a least cost fashion, and without all the collatoral damage that would result from an old-fashioned bombing raid or a full military strike.

Whether you agree with this form of assasination or not is another question, but it has nothing to do with the supposed glorification of war.. quite the opposite..
Posted by Curmudgeon, Tuesday, 30 July 2013 10:37:20 AM
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Would the author prefer his Child fly a drone or or be a grunt in the field?
It would be a lovely world without war but it isn't going to happen anytime soon.
Posted by Kenny, Tuesday, 30 July 2013 11:35:59 AM
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As Australia and the U.S. are, at this very moment, involved in a huge combined military extravaganza called 'Talisman Sabre', this article is very relevant.

Australia, in an obvious slight to China, is currently playing little boy's war-games with the Yanks. They are practicing "blockading", that is getting ready to stop ships from reaching China with needed resources. Thousands are involved plus warships and submarines. Oh, what fun!

These war-games show how involved Australia is in the machinations of the world's major warmonger and imperialist: America. It is an involvement that borders on insanity. Why?

China is our major trading partner and will soon become the world's premier Superpower! Only idiots would wave a red flag in front of such a nation especially as the U.S. is in decline.

We need politicians in Australia who have an I.Q, above 80. We need politicians who have the intelligence to realize how dangerous it is to throw in our lot with the Yanks who, filled with delusions about being 'exceptional', are seeking global domination.

When are Australians going to realize that becoming a pawn of America is foolish and threatens our survival as a nation?

Wake up, Australia. The Trojan Horse is within our city walls!
Posted by David G, Tuesday, 30 July 2013 11:42:40 AM
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Thanks David Stephens

And yes Anzac was a criminally wasteful military disaster reconfigured into a celebration of nationalism:

- often by pro-conscription politicians at the time - living down the casualties-victims,

- resurrected by John Howard = khaki elections, and

- all PMs since

Who remembers the Western Front where many more Australians died than Gallipoli?

As already experienced by the War Memorial Brendan Nelson will continue his odd self publicity
- publically associating Anzac with his good self.

Our "VC" War in Afghanistan, a Taliban killing temporary occupation of a very small part of Uruzgan, is another wasteful example of military policy gone allied.
Posted by plantagenet, Tuesday, 30 July 2013 1:56:10 PM
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Rwanda, Bosnia, Syria, Chechnya,Taliban Afghanistan all very bloody, up close and personal recent wars. Millions killed by knives and small arms.
I really don't see the difference between a bomb dropped by an unmanned aircraft controlled from the ground or one dropped from a manned aircraft. The bomb (or aircraft) still goes bang when it hopefully hits the right target.
The trigger for bloodshed is the desire for power, not who has the most sophisticated weapon system.
Posted by AllanL, Tuesday, 30 July 2013 4:05:15 PM
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