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  1. #21
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    "We will never fight another war like World War 2."

    That sounds like a statement from someone who has been reading Sci-Fi and believes we will use photon laser beams.

    You want proof that you are wrong? Easy. Why haven't we simply levelled Iraq with a few juicy bombs at the cost of sero American lives? It's 2006 and last I checked the war they are fighting is being conducted awfully similar to WWII.

  2. #22
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    arguement against economic entanglements preventing wars. Hitler waited until a trainload of critical materials from Russia cleared the boarder before invading Russia [or was it Poland], when my Granfather was called up to the Navy reserve in 39 or so, he was on a fleet tanker taken over from Stanard oil that had to complete its contracts before the navy could take it, so he was transporting texas oil to the NJ refiners for shipment to Germany!
    When there are overwhelming intractable economic conflicts that do not have a mechanism to be resolved you get a war. as my old friend a WWII infantry man said, "war is a lousy way to solve a disaggreement"

  3. #23
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    Come on- the War in Iraq is NOTHING like WW2.

    Fortified camps with satellite TV, coke machines, and a PX that sells X-boxes?
    Computer controlled tank guns that can hit things you cant even see?
    Helicopters, AC-130 Gunships, Fast Movers, AWACS, GPS, Live Video feeds from drones flying overhead, laser guided bombs?
    Any serious injury is airlifted to Germany within a day.
    Body Armor means that far fewer guys die.

    WW2 was won by throwing thousands of tons of dumb munitions, along with 5 million US troops, at every problem.

    We fight completely differently now, much smarter. It takes less men, and less equipment, by an order of magnitude, to do the same thing.

    This is not in any way to put down the incredible heroism of the guys who go out on patrol in Iraq every day- facing snipers, IED's, and RPG's.

    But in Iraq, there is no way the enemy can field anything bigger than a mortar without us taking it out in a few minutes.
    No tanks, no artillery, no airplanes.

    I repeat my statement- we will never fight a war like World War 2 again.
    We will never put out a fleet of 200 ships to fight another fleet of 200 ships- just aint happening.
    We will never need 40,000 fighters again, or 20,000 bombers.
    We dont need 200 submarines- 5 of our current ones can do more damage than all the subs in world war 2 put together.

    World War 2 was a battle of huge quantities of simple machines.
    Our current devastating firepower means we can do much more damage with far fewer weapons, and we have the capability to manufacture more than enough of them.

    Yes, it takes a couple of years or more to make aircraft carriers and submarines- but we already have more, and better ones, than everybody else put together.

    Now the question GregSY raised about Iraq- could we end it if we killed a few million civilians- thats not a matter of manufacturing- thats a moral decision.
    We decided one way during World War 2, when we firebombed Dresden, and other German cities, killing hundreds of thousands of civilians.
    At that time, our commander in chief decided it was worth it, as the alternative was worse.
    I dont think Bush lacks the backbone to kill people- if anything, he has a little too much tendancy in that direction.
    If his advisers told him we could be thru with the whole thing by just killing all 5 million people in Baghad, hell, he might do it- but his stated purpose is not to "Beat Iraq"- its to bring democracy to Iraq.
    Cant do that if they are all dead.

  4. #24
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    We are pretending that there is a military solution to the Iraq situation?

    Nukem?

    Which ones?

    Who takes over when the 'few million civilians' are gone?

    You think the Iraq war has helped al qaida recruiting, your 'nukem' strategy will galvanize millions more to go to any length to kill American civilians, not to mention make all of our enemies and competitors seem like more legit alternatives as world leaders.

  5. #25
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    Believe it or not, the USA is't even running a military campaign in Iraq any more. We are building bases and a big administrative compound (it's called an embassy but it really is an in-country international executive office).

    The USA owns the place but we don't want to bother with the civics of running a 51st. state far away and populated by natives who don't want to become Americans.

    Our forces are now the third party to a civil war carried out by two competing fanatic factions of the same faith.

    Our tactics should be directed to calming these factions down and dis arming them. So far we haven't been too successful because we cannot bring the might of our forces to bear against small changing targets.

    Our main thrust there must be co ordinated counter insurgency tactics. We can't quiet the insurgency nor the civil war by armed force alone.

    We must learn from this eperience in Iraq, this is what future conflicts will look like.

    I am reminded of the Romans in Jerusalem at the time of Jesus. The Romans were the occupying force but the Jews had their own separate society and their own civil and religeous laws.

    Notice how Herrod, the Jewish administrator, bucked the Jesus case up to Pilot, the Romans' administrative agent. Herrod found nothing in Jewish law that would condemn Jesus to death.

    Pilot of course wasn't about to get involved with a purely Jewish complaint.

    So, two thousand and six years later and just down the road apiece in Baghdad the USA is in the sme fix.

    How much military oppression can we use? How much hand-washing should we do.

    These choices don't involve bombers or aircraft carriers or tanks or huge battallions of soldiers.

    Welcome to the new old problems of empire.

  6. #26
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    "...his stated purpose is not to "Beat Iraq"- its to bring democracy to Iraq.
    Cant do that if they are all dead."

    I don't know why not. Lots of cemetary residents in the states vote.

    Charles

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    Ries
    We have much more than the manufacturing capacity we would need to fight any war, or combination of wars, forseeable.
    Heck, I'd be happy if you could address the wars we already couldn't fight without foreign help, or did your extensive research into American millitary dependence on foreign sources forget what problems we have already run into?

    I'll be more than happy to list them for you when I have more time, right now I gotta get to bed.

    Steve

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    Ries,

    The war in Iraq is the same as the Second World War.

    Not the part where hundreds of thousands of American troops faced like numbers of German troops.

    More like where tens of thousands of japanese troops tried to destroy guerillas in the Phillipines.

    Like where 100 thousand German troops were held up in the Balkans, Serbia and Croatia and Slovenia.

    Those troops would have come in handy to both Germany and Japan, were they able to use them where they could have counted.

    We have 6,000 more in Iraq this week than last, from the latest news, 133,000 US troops now, all the latest whiz-bang toys, billions of dollars worth.

    We can airlift a seriously wounded soldier to Germany for treatment, but, from what I have been reading, if a mortally wounded soldier is out of the country when he dies, he is not a "Combat Death".

    Regardless, we have about 3,000 dead soldiers, 18,500 + severely wounded, for what was then 127,000 in country, that is a 17% casualty rate. 1 in 6 is out of action.

    Whiz bang all you want, people still do the fighting. Whiz bangs are only as good as the military testers say they are. They are NOT what you see on CNN, setups where they have a fixed target and ideal conditions to test this stuff on.

    I can shoot 1 hole all day from the bench with some of my rifles. I can hit a deer running in the woods. In Boot Camp and AIT I could point my rifle in the general direction of the attackers and empty the rifle without crapping my pants.

    DON'T know that I could have done it, and hit anything, if there were any number of people shooting back at me. Apparently the same for 99%, at least of all soldiers, else why does it take about 50,000 rounds per downed enemy, and that with the old fashioned semiautomatic rifles, the M1 or the M14.

    Give an Army full auto and it is pray and spray. Give an Army laser guided, remote controlled, computer controlled, etc, and misses are blamed on computer programs and bad topo maps loaded into them. They were programmed to fly over Georgia, in the US, went to Iraq with the same program, got lost.

    5 of our Super Subs CAN destroy the world, with their full complement of nukes. They AIN'T gonna interdict all shipping.

    Your Super Tanks are matched on the other side with THEIR Super Tanks. Not the Iraquis, but I would bet the Germans and Brits and the French and Russians still are working on upgrading theirs.

    The Chinese, I am sure, also have threir own version, which, with their manufacturing capacity, I am pretty sure they could out equip us on the battlefield.

    You seem to think all you gotta do is make a better video game. War is only a video game when you and yours are not in the battle zone.

    Wars are not for you and me. Wars are for the rich, who become richer. Those without a country to claim allegiance to. Profit is all. And that has been true for every war ever fought by man. A King wins, he and his get richer. A King loses, his line ends, his treasury belongs to the victor.
    You and we are pawns, and our children and grandchildren.

    To the victor go the spoils.

    Cheers,

    George

  9. #29
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    George:

    Wars are for the strong-headed rich. In the old days, they constituted the royalty in more modern times they constituted the high levels of government.

    Nowadays they can't make war the way they used to, the cost outweighs any gain.

    Camapigns and skirmishes are all right if the odds are heavily on your side. Even if you loose, like we did in Vietnam, you can declare victory and withdraw.

    All nations are warlike. their citizens will tolerate an amazing amount of casualties if their patriotic fervor is aroused.

    The toll of the Iraqi campaign so far only upsets the arm chair pacifists and some of the think tank set in DC. The heartbreak, mourning and grief of individual families never makes it into the figuring of the strategists.

    Never has a war been stopped by the ordinary citizens of any nation. When the bugles blair and the flags fly, the military moves out toward glory.

    Talk to any soldier, he's spoiling for a fight. War is in the basic nature of men.

    On topic - 1812

    I am reading about Napolion's war against Russia. His army was comprised of forces from a large number of nations. I am sure that each nation's forces had their own specific equipment, each was led by their own generals. Of course, everybody reported to The Emporer.

    Napolion wasn't buying parts and pieces of ordnance, he was heavily dependent on foreign nationals who, for their own reasons owed loyalty to him. Nowadays the "Grand Arme'e" would be called a coalition force.

    Ya, Ya, the Russian winter got him.

    or did it?

    By the time his army got to the Neimann River, his soldiers were out of food and his horses were out of oats and grain. Soldiers were eating horses. Starvation and sickness had already taken it's toll.

    This was in August, not one battle had been fought.

    The temperature was 86F, soldiers were passing out from the heat. (???) An up-Notrh cold front passed through with storms like we had here 2 1/2 weeks ago. Soldiers and animals froze to death. (hyopthermia and lack of food).

    Did they say screw it and go home? Nope the soldiers complained that the Russians were retreating rather than fighting!

    They were soldiers, they came for a fight, it didn't seem to occur to them that the war was hopeless from the start.

    In more modern times, the Japanese knew full well that making war against the USA was suicide. They went ahead anyway and put up a darn good fight.

    Armies and Navies go to war because they want to fight .

    Strong headed rich people pay for armies and navies because they know that this natural inclination will further their ends.

    It's always been this way, I am not looking for change anytime soon.

  10. #30
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    Pilot of course wasn't about to get involved with a purely Jewish complaint.
    Too bad George Bush doesn't have as much sense as Pilot.

    Ries, I think you missed the entire point of the posted news article. All of that high tech weaponry you mentioned cannot be manufactured without materials and components from foreign sources. Ever try to make a jet engine without cobalt from South Africa? Or armor plate steel without manganese?

    Do you realize how few electronic components are made in the USA these days? Even USA made electronic cicuits will be full of IC's from Singapore, resistors from Spain, and capacitors from Taiwan. How do you build those high tech guidance systems for those missles or one of those tanks without electronics?

    Having manufacturing capacity isn't enough. You have to have the raw materials.

    And what happens when one of those CNC machines breaks down, and it needs a part made only in Taiwan?

    OK, so we will never fight another WWII again. That is true, because we can't.

    You say the Chinese will never invade the USA? Well, I don't know. How many Chinese can you put in a shipping container? And, as you say, it doesn't take that many men to fight a war anymore, so it won't take many Chinese to attack the USA.

    Most everyone thinks it silly that the Chinese would attack the USA; everyone except maybe the Chinese? Chinese deploy missles with second strike capacity against the USA

  11. #31
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    Art:

    Do you REALLY believe that the Chinese intend at some time to attack the USA?

    Even the article that you link to admits the missiles are second strike weapons. In other words they are defensive not offensive.

    How long did the USA and the Soviet Union have nuclear missiles pointed at each other. Did one country attack the other?

    It is the ultimate irony that now that The Old Syouz is Kaputnick nobody has even thought of over running the place.

    It is getting so that the Chinese can't even fart without someone over here saying that we will be attacked by them.

    "How many Chinese can you put in a sea container?" That's not the question, the real question is how many Chinese will come out of a sea container after an ocean crossing??

    The only thing the Chinese are going to put in sea containers is the stuff that we will snap up at Wally's right away.

    We are the Super Power Nation! We have the Chinese right where they want us. [img]smile.gif[/img]

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    I feel like the initial point of this thread was to somehow infer that since we get materials and supplies from all over the world, we somehow could lose a war if we were attacked.
    Now, its true, if every nation in the world attacked us at once, we might run out of cruise missiles.

    But no realistic war would result in that. We have, and can continue to build, enough weapons to win just about any war that is likely to happen soon. Unless the russians decide to launch all their nuclear weapons at us without warning.

    I know 5 submarines alone could not interdict shipping, but we could easily interdict an invasion fleet from China. We have satelitte coverage, AWACS, Drones, and more than enough aircraft carriers and subs to do so easily.

    The chinese dont even have an aircraft carrier. None. Their planes are mostly 30 year old russian designs. They do have some subs, but they would be mincemeat in a naval battle if they attempted to protect freighters carrying containers full of soldiers.
    They have something like 7000 Marines. In the whole country, 7000.
    The idea of the chinese actually attacking us is just plain silly. They have lots of land troops armed with AK-47's, and they have nuclear weapons, but in between, they are pretty threadbare, and how the heck are they gonna get here? Swim?

    If they really did put soldiers in containers, we could just not unload em. That would show em. Leave em stacked up on deck.

    When I say Iraq is not like World War 2, I mean it in many ways- of course, in the end, a lot of the brunt is borne by individual soldiers.
    But specifically referring to manufacturing, which is what this forum was about- I was trying to say that because of our "video game" equipment, we just wont need 100,000 jeeps and 50,000 tanks. Because of our battlefield intelligence, because of our incredible mobility, because of the overwhelming power of our weapons, from Spectre gunships to M1 tanks, we no longer solve problems on the battlefield the same way.

    The big problem with Iraq is that it is a guerrilla war, and they are always virtually unwinnable. Its easy to destroy infrastructure, or to kill everybody in a specific area. Its much harder to fight unmarked enemy amongst a civilian population.
    What would help in Iraq would be 3 or 4 Million Arabic speaking soldiers, who were willing to live there full time for 10 years or so.
    But just adding another 10,000 tanks, or 20,000 fighter planes, like we did in world war 2?
    I dont think so.

    Frankly, I think the fact that the modern military is dependant on many countries to supply components is a good thing. It makes war less likely, both from our viewpoint and from theirs. To quote Doctor John, "Everybody wants to get rich, right away"

    And the more communication between nations, the more economic interests are intertwined, the more people know and deal with each other, the less likely war is.
    I am not in favor of war.
    Which is not to say I am a pacifist, or that I dont think certain wars are totally justified, I just dont think they should be fought unless absolutely necessary.

    We have never fought a war alone.
    We have never supplied all the materials or weapons for a war from within our borders.
    During World War 2, we made a lot of stuff, for sure. But we imported all the rubber for all the tires for all those jeeps. We imported lots of minerals then, lots of stuff from other countries. We could not have broken the Enigma code without British help. We have never been all alone in the world, and we never will be. We have allies, and have had help in every war since the Revolution, which we would not have won without help from the French.

    No man is an island.
    No country lives on this world all alone, without the constant interaction with everybody else.
    Every american is a human being first, and we are all, as Red Green says, in this together, every one of us on this planet.

  13. #33
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    And exactly how are you laying this on Hillary Clinton???!!!! (I know I'll be sorry I asked.)
    First I will just agree with Ries viewpoints,
    that will make it simple.

    To answer Stephanie's question I would assume
    the poster was making a sarcastic remark directed at the democratic party's typical
    stance on military spending.

  14. #34
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    Reis:

    And the British would never have broken the Enigma code without Polish help.

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    Regardless, we have about 3,000 dead soldiers, 18,500 + severely wounded, for what was then 127,000 in country, that is a 17% casualty rate. 1 in 6 is out of action.
    Yet another exsample of how to lie with statisics. On first reading the above quote seems to be reasonable but in reality it is comparing apples and oranges and giving a result that is an outright lie. The 3,000 dead soldiers, 18,500 + severely wounded numbers are for the entire time duartion of the conflict. The 127,000 in country is the number of troops in Iraq at any one time . To compare apples to apples It is neccisary to know the total number of troops that have been rotated through Iraq in the same time period as the time period used for the casulty numbers. Not having ready access to the number of troops rotated through Iraq I can't give an actual Percent casualy number but simple common sense says that the number is much lower then the 17 percent quoted.

  16. #36
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    Ries
    We have, and can continue to build, enough weapons to win just about any war that is likely to happen soon.
    What may be the shortest memory of important lessons in the history of government was demonstrated at the end of World War II. Even though the critical role of the machine tool in national defense had just been learned under the most convincing possible conditions, the government appeared, during the next five years, to be intent not only on destroying military capacity but also on destroying the machine-tool industry needed to rebuild that capacity in an emergency.

    Thus, what a Senate investigating committee later concluded was "inexcusable shortsightedness and gross mismanagement of the machine-tool program prior to World War II was repeated only a few years later.

    When the Korean War started in June 1950, it seemed at first to be a quick "police action" by UN forces that would be over before Christmas. Then China entered on the North Korean side, and the situation changed drastically.

    Two things made this situation different from 1941. One was that there was no clear vision of the scope of the effort that would be required. The other was that there had been no advance buildup. In 1941, two years of accellerating orders from Britain and France had caused a major increase in the capacity of the industry. By contrast, in 1950, the industry was still in the doldrums produced by the surplus machines thrown on the market in the postwar years.

    What was not changed was the attitude in Washington. Repeated trips by machine-tool builders did not alter the government conviction that there would be no problem.

    Then, late in 1950, the attitude changed again. Suddenly machine tools were needed at once. Again the industry was accused of being a bottleneck and of dragging its feet. In January 1951, the National Production Board Authority (the Korean War version of the NDAC, OPM, and WPB) moved in and began seizing machine tools from the civilian customers that had ordered them and began allocating them on a priority basis. Machine-tool builders were then able to get priorities for the materials and supplies they needed. The problem was compounded by an interservice scramble for machine tools between the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force (which had become an independent third force after World War II).

    After the Korean War, there were again studies and post-mortems. This time, the major study was headed by Harold S. Vance, a veteran of WPB days and president of Studebaker. His report to Congress said:

    "The fact that the nation realizes today the mistake it has twice made, does not insure that it will not again fall into the same error or into an error even more disastrous."

    Vance proposed a series of steps toward creation of a strategic reserve of machine tools, with regular updating. Whether or not the Vance proposals would have been effective can be argued; the fact is that they were not adopted. The provisions for dealing with machine-tool production in a future emergency are the same today as they were in 1917, 1941, and 1950 - nonexistent."

    American Machinist
    November, 1977


    That quote is the beginning, and its' 39 years old.

    Steve

  17. #37
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    I notice that any mention of the so called governmant reserve of machine tools built between 1951 and 1955 was somehow left out.

    In thse years the US government bought over a billion 1950's dollars worth of all kinds of machine tools and stored most of them away.

    I have seen a great many of them, I have worked quite a few and have taken one or two out of their cosmoline.

    The government reserve is not a tall tale, it was real.

    You an find all kinds of stuff on the net but mostly it is people telling you what you want to hear.

  18. #38
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    I consider the screw, bolt and nut production as critical as any. Nearly everything manufactured is assembled with fasteners.
    With the exception of aerospace and a few specialty metal fasteners we now import over 90%

    We cannot produce them now. Our manufacturing plants are gone. So are the companies that make the machines (headers, thread rollers, etc.) are also gone. It will take a long time to get back into that business

  19. #39
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    The sky is falling because we dont make cheap 1/4x20 nuts?
    Cmon.

    If we really needed nuts, I got a bandsaw, and could get my 12 year old cutting hex bar, and running it thru the drill press with a tapping head.

    Any war that is bad enough that we get no imports from anywhere in the world is bad enough that we will make what we need the hard way.

    Besides, I got a whole room full of old nuts and bolts, and the US government could just set up the official War Department Garage Sale Department, with government buyers having a priority rule entiteling them to every coffee can of hardware at every garage sale in america.

    Seriously, there are CNC machining centers all over the place currently making totally non-essential stuff that could easily be converted to nut making. We dont really need all those snowboard bindings, motocross parts, or trailer hitch plugs with the Harley logo on em- but the amount of VMC's that are turning out that stuff is truly amazing.
    Hell, if we just converted all the aftermarket Harley accessory production in america to the war effort, we could conquer the world.
    Jesse James would be glad to do his part, I am sure, and maybe Sandra Bullock would do some USO tours, too.
    And if we really get desperate, we could send the old Walrus from Orange County Choppers over- the enemy would be running in fear.

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    Fred,

    Out of an in country force of 133,000, about 21,500 billets have been emptied, needed to be refilled.

    I don't care how you want to look at it. I don't care if it is 1/10 of 1 percent. 21,500 boys (some of them aren't boys, some have been in the Guard and Reserve for a good while )are out of the game, permanently.

    Easy to say it is worth it, you can't make an omelet without breaking eggs, when they ain't YOUR eggs.

    I don't know how many men have been sent to Iraq overall. From the complaints I have read, with Guard and Reserve units being sent for 2nd, 3rd and 4th tours, there can't be THAT many new faces. The only new ones would be the ones recruited since the conflict began.

    There were probably 7 million or so in Viet Nam over the years. You don't hear too many people making your argument that the 50+ thousand death toll was just 1/140th of the people who had been there at one time or another. Pretty good odds, huh? How many severely damaged do we have from that little adventure?

    How many, besides the dead and badly crippled, will we have from this adventure?

    AND, how much will you bitch over the "Welfare" spending to take care of the crippled?

    We have a nasty habit of forgetting those who served and suffered when the serving is over, and the suffering continues. VA gets cuts in funding between wars or pseudo-wars like this one.

    Anybody that LIKES what is going on over there should go down to the recruiting station and sign up. They are taking people who wouldn't have made it before the shortage.

    Cheers,

    George


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