Is It Time to Invade Burma? [A Just War?]


The disaster in Burma presents the world with perhaps its most serious humanitarian crisis since the 2004 Asian tsunami. By most reliable estimates, close to 100,000 people are dead. Delays in delivering relief to the victims, the inaccessibility of the stricken areas and the poor state of Burma’s infrastructure and health systems mean that number is sure to rise. With as many as 1 million people still at risk, it is conceivable that the death toll will, within days, approach that of the entire number of civilians killed in the genocide in Darfur.

So what is the world doing about it? Not much. The military regime that runs Burma initially signaled it would accept outside relief, but has imposed so many conditions on those who would actually deliver it that barely a trickle has made it through. Aid workers have been held at airports. U.N. food shipments have been seized. U.S. naval ships packed with food and medicine idle in the Gulf of Thailand, waiting for an all-clear that may never come.

That’s why it’s time to consider a more serious option: invading Burma. Some observers, including former USAID director Andrew Natsios, have called on the U.S. to unilaterally begin air drops to the Burmese people regardless of what the junta says. The Bush Administration has so far rejected the idea — “I can’t imagine us going in without the permission of the Myanmar government,” Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday — but it’s not without precedent: as Natsios pointed out to the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. has facilitated the delivery of humanitarian aid without the host government’s consent in places like Bosnia and Sudan.,8599,1739053,00.html

We can parachute in a lot of stuff, but it’ll be a drop in the bucket. You need to land those big transport jobs that carry tons and tons. I believe we could do both these things, and dare the junta to begin shooting at us. But an all out invasion, it ain’t going to happen, I’m afraid. I fear that thousands are going to die unnecessarily of disease and starvation…Roanoker

Would invading Burma bring relief to the stricken faster than having reasonable emergency talks with those in charge?

Invasion would worsen the plight of the afflicted. It would not expedite aid…it would make it far longer in time.


I voted “don’t know” but as a point of information:

We’ve been having emergency talks with them since the cyclone. So has the EU and the UN, and neighboring countries as well. Well, as much as they can anyway.

Related: America’s generosity to Burma

Thats about the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever read!

If starvation and deprivation were a cause for war, than we would have to invade half the world. And I find it rather amazing that Time/CNN, which has been so consistently against the Iraq war, a war that freed 17 million Iraqis from one of the most murderous and brutal regimes in the world, would now push for an outright invasion of Burma (Myanmar) a country with such deep and dense jungle that would make a war, or even heavy aid from the air, nearly impossible to carry out.

At this point in time, this country could ill-afford to get itself into another war or crisis in another part of the world. We are stretched to the limit now, and the American people would not stand to see our boys and girls go to some other far away despotic country. If Iraq has proven anything, it proved that freeing and trying to help other countries is a very difficult, time consuming and costly affair…

The thread title and the poll title aren’t the same. I voted yes to unilateral intervention, but that isn’t the same as invading or a just war. This should be a peace enforcement operation–enough military force to protect ourselves, the supply routes, LSPs so we can get the aid into the hands of the first people in the chain that can adequately distribute. Then we get out–a transition plan is required.

Where is FEMA in all this?:smiley:

FEMA’s mission is domestic disaster management. Not International Aid: The primary mission of the Federal Emergency Management Agency is to reduce the loss of life and property and protect the Nation from all hazards, including natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters, by leading and supporting the Nation in a risk-based, comprehensive emergency management system of preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation.

USAID is the agency whose mission it is to lend assistance to those people overseas who need it. They frequently utilize the US military (normally Navy and Air Force) assets in transportation and emergency assistance.

I voted no…we have plenty on our plate. If the government doesn’t want help, then their people need to get a new government.


Who is the “we” that will invade Burma? Are those who say we should intervene militarily willing to enlist and walk point in this war?

If now, just who do they expect to take on that dangerous task?

That was an attempt at some “sick” humor. You failed to notice the :smiley: Sorry for the misinterpretation.

I was wondering the same thing - it seems to me that the American military is already spread quite thin between Afghanistan and Iraq.

I know we don’t have anyone from Canada to send to Burma; everyone’s in Afghanistan right now.

But I am willing to lend a Garand rifle and five bandoliers of ammunition to anyone who thinks “we” should go.:wink:

This TIME article shows the absolute hypocrisy of liberals and conservatives. Both believe we should kick down the door of some county half away around the world, and using some “let’s save them from a brutal regime” excuse, so really the only difference between the two is which targets to go for.

Catholic writer Joe Sobran said it best:

“Want to impose your ideology at home and do a little on another country? Your a Liberal. Want to impose your ideology abroad and do a little here at home? Your a Conservative. Are you a just a normal guy or gal who just wants to leave everyone in the world alone so long as they don’t bother you? Well then Liberals and Conservatives will then accuse you of being an Extremist!”

This is the silliest idea I’ve heard in a long time. About as silly as posing the question Is it time to invade the US after Katrina?

The major media are fond of pointing out that the U.S. does not have sufficient resources to maintain wars in both Afghanistan and Iraq. If that’s so, how would we add Burma?

It does seem it would take very strenuous military action. Obviously the government of Myanmar is not welcoming the idea of any kind of foreign involvement. Certainly it would have a big problem with any kind of military involvement. It’s hard for me to see how it would not result in a war.

So far this seems to me like one of those situations in which the government wants the supplies but wants to decide who gets them; rather like North Korea. The government’s troops and operatives will get them. No one else.

So true, we also do not have any resources left. Our military has been eaten up and spit out in Iraq. We have a depleted military and no surplus funds to fund another war, our debt is bad enough already.

Not true. We have a Navy and Air Force that are virtually unused. Not that we should do anything in Burma, but we have plenty of assets if we wish to do something.

I agree that Time Magazine’s title is silly. I didn’t invent it, that is what the article is entitled, and I ran with it. Seems to be starting some discussion here.

So if you don’t call it an “invasion” if you think we should do something, what? People are, after all, dying at an appalling rate.

Navy and Air Force are only capable of mass murder when on the offensive, they can do nothing as far as humanitarian causes or helping people, not like our government should be doing either of those anyways.

It is the Navy and Air Force who helps USAid pass out humanitarian aid in disasters like this.
REPLENISHMENT FOR BURMA - U.S. Marines prepare to assist victims of Cyclone Nargis, which devastated Burma on May 2. As part of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, the Marines remove cargo nets from pallets of food, water and emergency supplies delivered to the amphibious assault ship USS Essex off the Gulf of Thailand, May 9, 2008. *U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class David Didier *

Related Articles:
Gates: U.S. Military Ready to Help, Ships, Air Support Staged

U.S. Military Ready to Provide Aid for Stricken Burmese, Official Says

U.S. Navy Ready to Help Burmese Cyclone Victims

Also see:

Relief EffortsUS Department of Defense - Tsunami

Relief DefenseLink News Release: US Military Support to Tsunami**…**

CatastropheDefenseLink News Article: US Responding to Tsunami

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