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Comment: Re:Inescapable fact of FPS games (Score 1) 217

by shutdown -p now (#48464713) Attached to: Top Counter-Strike Players Embroiled In Hacking Scandal

I don't think they are permanent - or at least there seems to be a process to have yourself reinstated. I've played against people online which had a red "Ban(s) on record" label on their account, and that was on VAC-secured servers.

I have to note, though, that every time I encountered such a label, the person who had it was blatantly using hacks as well (this was mostly in L4D, and things like extreme speed hacks, which are really obvious).

Comment: Re:But is it terrorism? (Score 1) 178

by shutdown -p now (#48463367) Attached to: Cameron Accuses Internet Companies Of Giving Terrorists Safe Haven

If one man murders another in the street, is it terrorism?

If it is intentionally done to draw attention to some political issue and/or carries an explicit political message, then sure.

What distinguishes terrorism is one's ultimate goal, not the means or the scale of the crime.

Comment: Re:Flip Argument (Score 1) 1087

by shutdown -p now (#48456987) Attached to: Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

So punching someone is grounds for murder now, is it?

It's assault. Sometimes, it kills people. As such, it's grounds for use of all available means, including lethal, to stop it as quickly as possible. The moment you initiate this level of violence against another person, you lose all protection against violence being employed against you, until the confrontation is over.

Comment: Re:Go asymmetric -- tank vs anti-tank rocket (Score 1) 140

by shutdown -p now (#48456589) Attached to: Ukraine's IT Brigade Supports the Troops

You can run the Russian version of the Wikipedia article through a translator to see a reasonably complete modern historiographic take on it from the Russian perspective - it also mentions a bunch of associated mythology, correcting it as needed (e.g. the ice breaking under the weight of retreating Germans - it's a late addition, and wasn't in the primary sources). But you can also see what is not there.

Comment: Re:Go asymmetric -- tank vs anti-tank rocket (Score 1) 140

by shutdown -p now (#48456555) Attached to: Ukraine's IT Brigade Supports the Troops

One absolutely can given that Russians have historically endured great sacrifice to protect **Russian** soil. So either Russians have changed their attitudes and will no longer make such sacrifices for Russian soil, very very doubtful, or they don't consider the Ukraine to truly be Russian soil requiring such a sacrifice.

In case you haven't noticed, there are already thousands of Russian volunteers fighting in militia units in Donbass. And it keeps ramping up.

That theory seems to fail given the level of active Russian interference in Ukrainian affairs.

I was talking about a popular attitude of Russian citizens, which is not necessarily shared by the Russian government.

Also note that the heavy-handed intervention always seems to be stopping short of full-on invasion (which, let's face it, would have the country steamrolled in matter of weeks if not days). Right now it's arms and munitions supply, artillery strikes across the border where the range allows, and occasional infiltration by the more elite units to lend a hand at hot spots (like Mariupol), but all covert and unofficial. No air support - which would make a really huge difference! - and no Russian tank columns rolling across the border in numbers.

From the "failed state" perspective, this actually makes a great deal of sense - you want to help it fail faster, but don't want to overtax yourself in doing so.

Comment: Re:Arm Ukraine (Score 0) 140

by shutdown -p now (#48453059) Attached to: Ukraine's IT Brigade Supports the Troops

I think that for things to to truly change, Russia needs to undergo the same experience that Germany had, basically. It has to very explicitly, clearly and unambiguously denounce its past actions, and the imperial ideology behind them. This never happened so far, not even in 1993 - it was always token nods and apologies, but always with "... but" tackled at the end. We had gulags, but we crushed the Nazis, that sort of thing.

So long as that remains, it keeps being used again and again as a basis of nationalist revival once the country gets strong enough that it can assert itself, and the populace thinks that they don't get the respect they are due as a nation. Witness the present arrangement, where pro-Novorossiya and anti-Ukraine rhetoric is heavily grounded in WW2 symbolism and cast as "fight against fascism" - even while many of the militia units fighting in Donbass openly use Nazi symbols themselves, and engage in rather vitriolic nationalist talk (my favorite is when they start going on about the "Jewish fascist junta", with revelations like Poroshenko's true last name being Valtzman etc). They don't see the contradiction at all, which just goes to reinforce that the Soviet/Russian cult of WW2 victory is fundamentally imperialist in nature, rather than anti-fascist - it's about Russia winning over a strong enemy, not about good guys winning over the bad guys. Or, from another perspective, it's a world view when Russia is fundamentally where the good guys are, and so anyone opposing is bad guys by definition. This can justify a lot of things.

I don't think there's much likelihood of this kind of thing happening, though. The only way it could happen is if Russia starts WW3, is defeated and occupied, and forced by the victors to undergo a process similar to de-Nazification in Germany, and similar purges in Japan. I think that all of these are rather unlikely.

Comment: Re:Arm Ukraine (Score 1) 140

by shutdown -p now (#48452931) Attached to: Ukraine's IT Brigade Supports the Troops

I didn't make any proposals - merely stated an objective fact. Historical track record has shown time and again that Russia is inherently a land hungry empire, and will expand unless and until stopped by force. Hence, any countries bordering Russia always have to contend with the fact that they may be the potential next target for that expansion. This is doubly true for any country that has been previously occupied, because of all the drivel along the lines of "this land is ours because it is washed by the blood of Russian soldier".

Oh, and I am not Ukrainian.

Thufir's a Harkonnen now.