Podcast #128: We chat with Kent C Dodds about why he loves React and discuss what life was like in the dark days before Git. Listen now.

Hot answers tagged

96

The answer is right in the Wikipedia page you cited (emphasis added): War reparations are compensation payments made after a war by the vanquished to the victors. The United States has not been vanquished in a war, so it has not been in a situation where it would make a payment to a victor of a war. Being “vanquished” implies not merely “losing” a war, ...


85

From the USA point of view there are two types of arguments. The first ones are those that state that the fewer nuclear capable countries there are, the better1: Fewer nuclear warheads at risk of being captured/sold to rogue actors. Non-nuclear countries are less of a worry if they become unstable. Every foreign country, no matter how friendly, is at the ...


79

Chemical weapons, like certain other kinds of weapons are banned not because of people killed by them, but because of what they do to the survivors. A summary from NPR: http://www.npr.org/2013/05/01/180348908/why-chemical-weapons-have-been-a-red-line-since-world-war-i It's a little counterintuitive that international law prefers weapons that kill cleanly ...


73

We will never surrender! has a pretty famous history. The obvious advantage of such a policy is that it makes invasion less likely. Let's assume that Russia invades Sweden. A natural step would be to kill politicians until they find one that is willing to say that people should not resist and should instead return to their homes. So plans that Russia ...


73

Outside a small fringe group, there is a broad consensus in Germany that starting WW2 was wrong. That is not incompatible with the idolization of German soldiers who fought in the war, though. For a long time (I would say roughly after the war until the 80s), many Germans blamed the political leadership (i.e. Hitler and the other Nazi leaders) essentially ...


57

The US public opinion is highly sensitive to casualties among US troops. They are much less concerned about casualties to contractors, especially if they are not US citizens. At times the US government has more money than available troops. At times deploying contractors is easier under domestic US law. Legal oversight is mostly designed with the official ...


55

But where exactly is the line North Korea must cross? Line setting is generally acknowledged as a bad idea. For example, Barack Obama set a red line in Syria about chemical weapons. Then they used chemical weapons. And Obama looked like an idiot when he did not respond with military force. Lines are bad for two reasons. One, they force action if the ...


51

Friend of my enemy is not always my enemy It's possible that Russia had people on that site, as they have been supporting Assad's regime airforce and air defence systems. Having Russian casualties from a surprise strike is not currently beneficial for USA. Giving an advance warning means that any such people (if they are there) will be evacuated or, if not, ...


50

The agreement to pay war reparations is usually part of a peace treaty. It is usually a demand the superior party makes from the inferior party in exchange for peace. In any wars where the United States "lost" in the past 100 years, the United States simply gave up on occupying the other parties' territory and withdrew their troops. The "winning" side was ...


49

Your question is slightly at odds with reality. First off, with the important exception of the US government, nobody sensible is quibbling over the mounting amount of evidence that Agent Orange had short and long lasting side effects. As you've noted already, the US government is not accepting any guilt or responsibility. So the real question is whether ...


47

The reason is the same for any country, not just the US. And it is rarely money. It can be roughly grouped like this: public opinion damage control: the population of a country cares about the death of their military personnel. This is especially true for the military conflict with no clear goal for a population (whom are we saving in the conflict in X?). ...


46

Russia was warned because there is a Russian military presence at the base. Airbus Defence & Space satellite imagery shows that there were four [Russian] Ka-52 Alligator and three Mi-28N Night Hunter helicopters deployed to Al-Shayrat Air Base, 30 km southeast of Homs city, on 31 March. Al-Shayrat has previously been used as a forward base for Russian ...


46

Yes Pacta sunt servanda, agreements must be kept. The Treaty of San Francisco is 70 years old which is young compared to many older treaties. Agreements have a few "outs," neither of which are valid in Japan's case: Duress: Agreements signed under duress can sometimes be nullified. Japan could perhaps be said to be under duress from the United States. As ...


44

As is noted in a comment on that question, the pamphlet is an updated version of "If the war comes", a similar pamphlet that was released from 1943 to 1991. With the end of the cold war it was for the time deemed outdated. So the real question here is why they decided to update and release it again. MSB (The department of societal protection and ...


44

Except China nobody has currently pledged this, and even the Chinese pledge is not considered credible (by some Western experts, at least): Most states with nuclear weapons maintain policies that would permit their first use in a conflict. Pledges to only use these weapons in retaliation for a nuclear attack—or a no-first-use (NFU) policy—are rare. Where ...


43

Two main problems with chemical (and biological) weapons is that their effects are usually considered unnecessarily cruel, and controlling their spread is not always possible. When exposed to a chemical weapon, only some victims die right away (depending on the weapon, this group may be very small), others have to endure days or weeks of pain. While a bomb ...


39

Ever heard of the term, "price of occupation"? Yugoslavia had a policy that no one, not even Marshal and president for life Josip Broz Tito, could declare surrender in the event of an invasion. It was also decided that a total war would be waged on the occupation forces, with everyone in a country contributing as best they could. Even if the government ...


39

Very smart people are still trying to figure this out. Perhaps surprisingly, this is far from resolved, and is currently an ongoing topic of rigourous legal and political discussion. A good starting point might be Valentin Jeutner's book Irresolvable Norm Conflicts in International Law, based on his doctoral thesis defended at Cambridge University in 2015, ...


35

Enough deterrent The United States hasn't invaded North Korea in over sixty years. Why does North Korea need nuclear weapons? The existing threat of artillery hitting Seoul is more than sufficient to prevent an invasion. We know this because the US hasn't invaded North Korea to prevent the development of nuclear weapons because of the more conventional ...


31

There have been many pronouncements of this type; they became particularly popular during and after WWI; although during the war the position of the socialist parties was that not so much about the profit but the fact that the proletarians of Europe were fighting each other along national lines instead of fighting their class enemies. From your wording, ...


30

Is Japan still bound by the terms of its surrender in WWII? Yes, but... Can the Japanese legally build an offensive military force to counter those threats? In other words, are they pacifists by choice, or are they still bound by their terms of surrender and the treaties they signed? Japan recently announced it was working on revising its constitution, ...


29

Public Opinion/Morale. The nice thing about this kind of declarations is that they are not binding. Today Swedish politicians can say "Never Surrender!" and tomorrow surrender after the first shot is fired1. So, since it is free(both in cost and in not tying future decisions), it makes for good grandstanding. Compare with "Well, if the enemy is much ...


28

Part of the reason is purely domestic political (which, of course, a lot of foreign policy reasons boil down to, in many countries). In case of Trump and Assad, there were actually several independent domestic factors: President Trump's base is the same people who criticized President Obama over setting 'red line' for Assad over use of chemical weapons and ...


28

Most mutual defense treaties are very explicitly defense treaties. They cover the case where a third nation attacks one or both of the signatories. It is rather difficult for two countries to attack each other first. So the country which has a treaty with both has to see who was attacked and who did the attacking. In theory, a straightforward matter of ...


27

Since no one else has mentioned it, another reason is that chemical weapons are most effective against people who are relatively weak. Civilians over soldiers. The old and the young over those in the middle. Lower concentrations can be fatal to children. Any weapon that is more effective against children than soldiers is one that is going to be opposed....


27

Countries are not usually prosecuted, only the individuals responsible in the command structure. There is an international criminal court; not only has the US not signed up to obey its judgements, it has a specific law ("Hague Invasion Act") preventing the international court's judgements being enforced against US military staff. "international court" ...


27

You are completely misjudging the intention of these memorials. In one of the articles you linked, a politician talks about the placement of one of these memorials: Es mache Sinn, dass Passanten das Denkmal sehen könnten. "Es soll ja ein Mahnmal sein, damit die Leute sich Gedanken machen." Translates to (see PS notes about "Mahnmal".) It makes sense ...


26

Same reason why everyone allowed Hitler to gobble up part of Czechoslovakia back in 1938. Nobody wants to start a war with Russia over this. The West bluffed. Putin, accurately reading Obama, called their bluff. For a more expanded treatment (leading to the same conclusion but from a bit more of an expert), see Niall Ferguson's article in Wall Street ...


25

This is both a pretty broad question and the answers (even from experts) are going to be opinion based to a good extent, so my answer is going to be a rather trite listicle of reasons that have been offered: Ethnic and religious divisions (including sectarian ones within Islam), plus a dominance/intolerance aspect thereof. E.g. one 2005 study found using a ...


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