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Comment: Re:Last straw? (Score 1) 451

How about actually allying with the Soviets against the Germans before WW2 began, and striking together as soon as Poland was invaded?

It was a very likely possibility, and USSR has actively explored just such an alliance. But it demanded a firm commitment to such a joint military action, with full involvement by all sides, that Brits weren't willing to sign up for (because they didn't think that a full-scale European war was inevitable even if Poland were to be invaded). So Soviets walked away and signed the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact instead.

Comment: Re:Last straw? (Score 1) 451

They don't need to develop nuclear weapons, merely acquire them. That's much easier given that e.g. Pakistan already has them, and its military and intelligence services have been infested by Islamists for many years now. Granted, those are mostly people affiliated with al-Qaeda, but who's to say some of them won't switch their allegiance to ISIS? It already happened for large parts of the Pakistani Taliban.

Comment: Re:Last straw? (Score 1) 451

The problem is no-one actually understood what the hell "stabilizing the situation" even means, and most certainly what American forces were doing there wasn't that. Instead, it was all make-pretend that they could actually establish a democratic government run by the locals. But such a thing, built on as shaky grounds as it was, in a country that is by its very nature split, would never have held for long. In other words, with the way this was done from day 1, it wouldn't matter if American soldiers left when they did, or 5 years later, the end result would have still been the same.

Comment: Re:Last straw? (Score 1) 451

Finally, someone uses their brain. Sure, we could send a big army over there and stomp them into the ground. But then what?

Then you occupy the country for 20 years or so. No games with grassroots democracy, just old fashioned military administration, rebuilding the infrastructure and de-radicalizing the society and enforcing stability by force, until it can actually have a stable government and economy on its own.

Which, yeah, is basically colonialism. Except for the part where you don't extract resources, so it's also crazy expensive (and remember, 20 years!). So about the only country that might be interested in anything similar is Iran, on the grounds that it can simply annex huge parts of Iraq on a permanent basis.

Comment: Re:Last straw? (Score 1) 451

It could be stopped by allying with USSR before the latter allied with Germany. USSR did in fact explore the option of an alliance with UK and France first, specifically over the issue of providing protection guarantees for Poland. The USSR specifically wanted a clear and firm guarantee that if Poland were to be attacked, the Western countries would enter the war with Germany alongside with the Soviets in more than a token effort (i.e. they didn't want to end up being the only ones facing the Germans there). As the Phony War has shown later, it was not an unreasonable fear. The French were interested in exploring such an approach, but the Brits still believed the war was not imminent, and refused on the fear of being dragged into a war on behalf of someone else.

Additionally, Soviets wanted to extend the agreement beyond just Poland, and in particular to prevent the then-independent Baltic states from openly allying with Germany by treating such an act as German aggression that would trigger the joint military intervention provisions of the agreement.

While Soviets were already in talks with the Germans, it was the collapse of the tripartite agreement talks that prompted them to switch gears and seek a full fledged treaty with the Germans, which resulted in the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact.

The run-up to WW2 was really quite a mess in terms of who was supporting whom. Most people do remember the pact, but fewer are aware of the fact that Poland has participated in the partitioning of Czechoslovakia in 1938 on Nazi side, for example.

Comment: Re:serious question (Score 1) 93

by TheGratefulNet (#49168443) Attached to: Marissa Mayer On Turning Around Yahoo

not sure about flickr 'going strong'. I joined flickr when it first came out and most of the people I 'knew' back then are no longer active on flickr and their updates have stopped years ago.

each time flickr changes their site, it breaks stuff, features get dropped that were useful and stupid things get added that are of NO value at all.

I did have a paid membership to flickr but I had that just 1 year, flickr started to suck and I let the paid thing lapse. now, I post a few photos a year instead of the dozens per month that I used to post.

(and no, I have not gone to FB or the other sites. I don't have a FB account and never will.) flickr was my only 'social networking' site, if you can call it that, but all my friends have gotton fed up with yahoo and left!

Comment: Re:serious question (Score 1) 93

by TheGratefulNet (#49168431) Attached to: Marissa Mayer On Turning Around Yahoo

excuse me??? spam filter works on yahoo?


I get nothing BUT 'indian tv' and 'indian flix' and other stupid spam. uhm, I'm not indian and don't speak the language, don't know the people and actually, don't even watch (broadcast) tv anymore. marking them as spam never stops them. clearly its spam but yahoo won't stop them from appearing in my yahoo inbox. I've given up on yahoo mail and only check it a few times a year. (it takes about that long to load those stupid web pages, too, even with adblock!)

Comment: Re:Brain drain (Score 2) 93

by TheGratefulNet (#49168401) Attached to: Marissa Mayer On Turning Around Yahoo

I worked at both sun and sgi (that you mentioned in your list) and neither one required us to be at our desks. I was telecommuting about 99% of the time (even though my office was about 10mi from where I live, all my co-workers were 'remote' and all our meetings were on the phone, so there was no real reason to 'be' there). I stayed there 5 years and had a great time, did good work and enjoyed being at sun. well, up until oracle bought them and all hell broke loose...

at sgi, same kind of deal; I was allowed to work from home as-needed and sgi was a 'very online' company back in the 90's. before it was trendy, in fact.

so, not sure which bay area you worked at, but I've been here over 25 years and I know what the silicon valley culture is all about. and it used to be pretty open and flexible. it was the 'california way' (I moved from boston, so I knew the east coast 'uptight' way as well as the more relaxed calif way.)

Comment: Re: Jerri (Score 1) 451

it's about "your soldier raped an Iraqi girl" or "soldier ran over Iraqi kid" - will it be tried in military courts or the Iraqi civilian ones

Of course it should be tried in the civilian court of the country in question, how else? For it to be otherwise would mean that the country doesn't exercise effective sovereignty on its territory, and the military in question is an occupying force in all but name, not even subject to the laws of the country that it occupies.

Comment: Re:Brain drain (Score 1) 93

by TheGratefulNet (#49168337) Attached to: Marissa Mayer On Turning Around Yahoo

I'm not seeing much choice, anymore. the last few years of interviews (off and on) have shown me that the bay area is swallowing the 'open office' idea, hook line and sinker.

my last gig was at cisco and they are converting (slowly but surely) to an all OO environment. and again, no one I talked to, there, was a tiny bit happy about it. they all talked about working from home (cisco still allows that) or just plain leaving.

make no mistake, companies do this to save money, save space and they don't care at all about your happiness! they at least acted like they did, years ago, but they don't even try that anymore. they know we all know what their plan is.

being a tech worker is really starting to suck. its becoming like factory work, many decades ago. churn and burn.

Comment: Re:Jerri (Score 1) 451

There's no way there can be a grassroots-organized local government that's stable enough for this to work out. Someone from the outside has to step in and, to put it bluntly, basically occupy the place well and good, with an occupation administration in place running things the way they need to be run (including forcibly suppressing revolts that are bound to happen on account of said occupation) for at least a decade, and possibly more.

It doesn't have to be the West. It can also be Iran, for example, or Turkey. It could also be all of those (occupation zones, like Germany post WW2). Or an organized multinational force under the aegis of UN. Or aliens from outer space.

It won't happen, though, because in the past few decades, we have placed national sovereignty and self-determination (and pretend that Iraq is even a single nation to begin with!) over preventing collapse of a stable society and civil wars.

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