Hypothetical - Morality

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weemadando
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Hypothetical - Morality

Post by weemadando » 2003-04-04 12:51am

You are a pilot who has been ordered by your superiors to "soften up" an area prior to a ground attack the next day. The ground attack will not be launched for a further 24 hours.

You are armed with 4 cluster bomb canisters.

Your target is an army barracks/communications centre.

As you approach the target you can clearly see that it is in the centre of a built up urban area and that many non-combatants are on the streets.

Even a perfect release will mean that at least 30% of the bomblets will impact non-military targets.


What do YOU do?

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Post by SirNitram » 2003-04-04 12:53am

What am I flying? An A-10 can 'soften up' the target with some cannon fire, entirely ignoring the bombs due to proximity of civilians.
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Post by Hamel » 2003-04-04 12:54am

I would disregard orders, and find a mountain to hide in.
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Re: Hypothetical - Morality

Post by Darth Wong » 2003-04-04 12:55am

weemadando wrote:You are a pilot who has been ordered by your superiors to "soften up" an area prior to a ground attack the next day. The ground attack will not be launched for a further 24 hours.

You are armed with 4 cluster bomb canisters.

Your target is an army barracks/communications centre.

As you approach the target you can clearly see that it is in the centre of a built up urban area and that many non-combatants are on the streets.

Even a perfect release will mean that at least 30% of the bomblets will impact non-military targets.

What do YOU do?
If you had serious problems with a situation like that, you wouldn't have joined the air force in the first place. Civilian casualties are an unfortunate necessity in war, and they don't violate the oddly named "laws of war", so I can't imagine anyone refusing the order.

Mind you, if this is not taking place during wartime, then you would be obligated to refuse the order.
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Post by KhyronTheBackstabber » 2003-04-04 01:06am

Drop my payload on my target, and go home.
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Post by Illuminatus Primus » 2003-04-04 01:10am

Drop my ordinance and head back to base for a cup of strong coffee.
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Post by Queeb Salaron » 2003-04-04 01:11am

Kamikaze-style into the barracks. Guaranteed direct hit, for the most part.
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Post by Enforcer Talen » 2003-04-04 01:58am

waste of money, queeb.

drop the bombs on the target, go home.
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Post by Arthur_Tuxedo » 2003-04-04 02:09am

I wouldn't be in that situation in the first place, but I'd tell my superiors to go ahead and court martial me if they expect me to blow up civilians.
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Post by Knife » 2003-04-04 02:10am

Situation dictates. What are the defenses of the target(armored or not) type of building, type and amount of military personel in the target, type and number of so called civies around the target. Not to mention how critical is the target to the over all scheme. Lots of unknowns there.



But going with the punches, yes I would drop my ordanence. These things are usually thought out. If I had cluster munitions hanging, it means that it was decieded that they were the best weapon available for the mission against the target. If the enemy had hundreds or thousands of civies standing on the target, I might balk but it would depend on how important it was to destroy the target and protect incoming troops or if it was a secondary or tercierary target.
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Post by Queeb Salaron » 2003-04-04 09:34am

Enforcer Talen wrote:waste of money, queeb.
Maybe so, but if there were some way to know that this "waste of money" would significantly lower the number of civilian casualties, that's money I'd be willing to spend.
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Post by Montcalm » 2003-04-04 09:40am

Arthur_Tuxedo wrote:I wouldn't be in that situation in the first place, but I'd tell my superiors to go ahead and court martial me if they expect me to blow up civilians.
I would do the exact same thing,if my commanding officer want to kill civilians he can do it himself.
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Post by Queeb Salaron » 2003-04-04 10:01am

::SIghs:: The sad part is, I think it's already been established that morality has no place in a time of war. Or at least, it has significantly decreased status in decision-making. (Which, as Maslow would argue, takes away our humanity... but that's beside the point.) Moral decisions cannot be reached in a time of war, simply because everything is logical and tactical. So the reality of this situation would be that there would be a shitload of dead civilians, as we've already seen in Iraqi marketplaces, etc.

I'm not making a moral arguement. Just stating a reality. And I hate the fact that it IS a reality. But I just call 'em like I see 'em.
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Re: Hypothetical - Morality

Post by Wicked Pilot » 2003-04-04 10:22am

weemadando wrote:You are armed with 4 cluster bomb canisters.

Your target is an army barracks/communications centre.
You don't use cluster bombs on buildings. You correct the mistaken payload before taking off.
The most basic assumption about the world is that it does not contradict itself.

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Re: Hypothetical - Morality

Post by Vympel » 2003-04-04 10:27am

Wicked Pilot wrote: You don't use cluster bombs on buildings. You correct the mistaken payload before taking off.
Or just change the scenario. Change barracks/communications centre to retreating enemy infantry column in unarmored trucks.
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Re: Hypothetical - Morality

Post by Wicked Pilot » 2003-04-04 10:31am

Vympel wrote:Or just change the scenario. Change barracks/communications centre to retreating enemy infantry column in unarmored trucks.
AC-130s are probably your best bet here. Of course once the infantry are fired upon, they will scatter and take refuge in civilian buildings. Then airpower would not be the solution.
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Post by Coyote » 2003-04-04 04:58pm

Drop ordinance and head home, have a beer, and think about the barbaric bastard that surrounds his military installations with innocent civilians in a cynical use of 'meat armor'.
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Post by Alyeska » 2003-04-04 05:03pm

Assuming this is a time of war, then I would drop the weapons. Yes it would kill people. However, the fault would ultimately fall on the enemy for having placed the target in an Urban setting in the first place. Kind of like placing a nuclear missile silo within a hospital.
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Post by Pu-239 » 2003-04-04 05:24pm

Kamikazie

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Post by Beowulf » 2003-04-04 05:34pm

Bombs away, and rail against the bastard that put the military complex in the middle of a city.
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