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Celtkin
06-18-2007, 06:24 AM
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said that the slaughter in Darfur was triggered by global climate change and that more such conflicts may be on the horizon, in an article published Saturday.

"The Darfur conflict began as an ecological crisis, arising at least in part from climate change," Ban said in a Washington Post opinion column.

UN statistics showed that rainfall declined some 40 percent over the past two decades, he said, as a rise in Indian Ocean temperatures disrupted monsoons.

"This suggests that the drying of sub-Saharan Africa derives, to some degree, from man-made global warming," the South Korean diplomat wrote.

"It is no accident that the violence in Darfur erupted during the drought," Ban said in the Washington daily.

When Darfur's land was rich, he said, black farmers welcomed Arab herders and shared their water, he said.

With the drought, however, farmers fenced in their land to prevent overgrazing.

"For the first time in memory, there was no longer enough food and water for all. Fighting broke out," he said.

http://www.breitbart.com (http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=070616212708.ymevxrx6&show_article=1&catnum=0)

Miamian
06-18-2007, 06:54 AM
It's plausible. Of course, the European-imposed economic system of agricultural mercantalism imposed on the area didn't help. In this case, cotton.

Celtkin
06-18-2007, 07:29 AM
I'm sure that there are a ton of factors that led to and fuel the crisis in Darfur. I never considered that one of the causes could be climatic.

I don't know if I completely buy off on Ban's theory but it is an interesting one.

Miamian
06-18-2007, 07:39 AM
I'm sure that there are a ton of factors that led to and fuel the crisis in Darfur. I never considered that one of the causes could be climatic.

I don't know if I completely buy off on Ban's theory but it is an interesting one.
I think he has a point. The inappropriateness of economic systems vis a vis geographical factors has been documented in the Sahel region of Africa. There, the French imposed a peanut-growing industry to support their industrial development. However, a place like the Sahel which experiences a monsoonal climate with a dry season wasn't the place for it. As Ban points out in Sudan, they used to have a system in which herders would graze on agricultural lands during the dry season and at the same time they would fertilize the land. The herders would then return north during the rainy season and the farmers would grow crops. On top of that the land requires a period of lying fallow to fully regain nutrients. All of that disappeared during the European conquest.

It's all explained thoroughly in Seeds of Famine.

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 01:45 PM
Nice way to exonerate the folks doing the killing. "It's not my fault that I've slaughtered women and children, they were living on the land I wanted and they wouldn't just give it to me".

Miamian
06-18-2007, 02:41 PM
Nice way to exonerate the folks doing the killing. "It's not my fault that I've slaughtered women and children, they were living on the land I wanted and they wouldn't just give it to me".
I don't think that anyone is trying to exonerate the Janjaweed. Stoning seems to be the appropriate punishment.

ckb2001
06-18-2007, 03:04 PM
Well, historically, climate change is responsible for a lot of movements of groups of people, and with it the war that ensues because of territory disputes, etc..

Just look at the history of the Asian steppes for one of the best examples of that (that history influenced Europe too.. start with the Huns, etc..)

Phinsome
06-18-2007, 03:17 PM
Here is the key quote.

"This suggests that the drying of sub-Saharan Africa derives, to some degree, from man-made global warming," the South Korean diplomat wrote.

It is just one of many factors. No surprise here.

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 03:32 PM
I don't think that anyone is trying to exonerate the Janjaweed. Stoning seems to be the appropriate punishment.

You don't think a headline which reads, "Climate change behind Darfur killing", places the blame on the climate change? You don't think that when the man points out that during times of plenty everyone was peaceful, but now that times are tight, they are not, lays a good part of the blame on the weather?

It reminds me of those folks who try to assuage the blame for criminals by pointing out that they came from a difficult environment.

Miamian
06-18-2007, 03:41 PM
You don't think a headline which reads, "Climate change behind Darfur killing", places the blame on the climate change? You don't think that when the man points out that during times of plenty everyone was peaceful, but now that times are tight, they are not, lays a good part of the blame on the weather?

It reminds me of those folks who try to assuage the blame for criminals by pointing out that they came from a difficult environment.
I'm sorry but I don't see it that way. You could also make an argument that climatic change created a set of conditions which allowed the Janjaweed to take advantage, which doesn't exonerate them but also explains the environment in which it took place.

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 03:45 PM
Well, historically, climate change is responsible for a lot of movements of groups of people, and with it the war that ensues because of territory disputes, etc..

Just look at the history of the Asian steppes for one of the best examples of that (that history influenced Europe too.. start with the Huns, etc..)

I'd say that the biggest difference is that those migrations didn't involve genocide. Even the Huns would allow people to remain in their homes and towns, only slaughtering if strong resistance was given. "No quarter" is a recent development in human evolution.

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 03:58 PM
I'm sorry but I don't see it that way. You could also make an argument that climatic change created a set of conditions which allowed the Janjaweed to take advantage, which doesn't exonerate them but also explains the environment in which it took place.

Actually, you could say that the climate change innitiated the conflict. But the way the headline is phrased, it blames the climate change for the killing. There's a difference.

cnc66
06-18-2007, 04:06 PM
I'd say that the biggest difference is that those migrations didn't involve genocide. Even the Huns would allow people to remain in their homes and towns, only slaughtering if strong resistance was given. "No quarter" is a recent development in human evolution.

how many did Gengis Khan spike... quarter million, one battle?

in fairness, it is said he sent in emissaries to the towns to allow them to surrender, if they refused, every man woman and child...no quarter.

I guess my poorly supported point is, I don't think it is new, and pogroms have gone on from the beginning. Weather changes.. climate changes have caused wars for thousands of years, the only "new" part is, in "this" change man is an exacerbating influence.

ckb2001
06-18-2007, 04:10 PM
I'd say that the biggest difference is that those migrations didn't involve genocide. Even the Huns would allow people to remain in their homes and towns, only slaughtering if strong resistance was given. "No quarter" is a recent development in human evolution.

There was quite a bit of genocide back then. Some say the Mongol advances were partly initiated through climate changes, just like many other tribal movements in that area prior to it. Of course, Genghis Khan took things further and was more successful, but genocide was definitely a tactic he used to instill fear and help him conquer other cities and empires with less overt military action.

For example, Genghis Khan and what he did to the Kwarezmid Empire has no analogy in modern history, at least in terms of the willingness to massacre whole populations in the cities of Bukhara, Samarkand, Herat, Tus, and Neyshabur (major cities in Central Asia at that time).

Neither Stalin nor Hitler nor Pol Pot came close (percentage-wise) to inflicting that kind of atrocity.

ckb2001
06-18-2007, 04:12 PM
how many did Gengis Khan spike... quarter million, one battle?

in fairness, it is said he sent in emissaries to the towns to allow them to surrender, if they refused, every man woman and child...no quarter.

I guess my poorly supported point is, I don't think it is new, and pogroms have gone on from the beginning. Weather changes.. climate changes have caused wars for thousands of years, the only "new" part is, in "this" change man is an exacerbating influence.

Nice, you beat me to it (had to double check which cities were razed on wiki :))

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 04:19 PM
how many did Gengis Khan spike... quarter million, one battle?

in fairness, it is said he sent in emissaries to the towns to allow them to surrender, if they refused, every man woman and child...no quarter.

I guess my poorly supported point is, I don't think it is new, and pogroms have gone on from the beginning. Weather changes.. climate changes have caused wars for thousands of years, the only "new" part is, in "this" change man is an exacerbating influence.

The point of that exercise is that he did it once, maybe twice, and the rest of the towns and cities he conquered fell easily with little loss of lives. It can actually be argued that his method saved lives overall. The traditional method of siege and sack most conquerors used wound up killing most of the populace anyway, just through disease and hunger. Carried over hundreds of towns and cities, had Khan been more "gentle", it would have produced many more casualties overall.

Oh, and as for pogroms, you are correct that they are not new. They were however unique to Jews. The word was invented afterall in specific reference to them.

ckb2001
06-18-2007, 04:34 PM
The point of that exercise is that he did it once, maybe twice, and the rest of the towns and cities he conquered fell easily with little loss of lives. It can actually be argued that his method saved lives overall. The traditional method of siege and sack most conquerors used wound up killing most of the populace anyway, just through disease and hunger. Carried over hundreds of towns and cities, had Khan been more "gentle", it would have produced many more casualties overall.

Oh, and as for pogroms, you are correct that they are not new. They were however unique to Jews. The word was invented afterall in specific reference to them.

You can argue his method saved lives overall? I'd like to hear that argument. His conquests before Kwarezmid involved much less bloodshed yet were no less impressive. In Kwarezmid, he murdered for revenge. Revenge, more than any other motivation we know of, caused that war and almost certainly increased the death toll from what would have been. I mean many of the massacres took place AFTER the conquests!!

In any case, on a smaller scale, killing all or many members of a village or city occurred quite often. Ever heard of the Aztecs? Or the Jurchen? etc.. Genocide was quite common in the past PhinPhan1227, though the scale was obviously different.

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 05:11 PM
You can argue his method saved lives overall? I'd like to hear that argument. His conquests before Kwarezmid involved much less bloodshed yet were no less impressive. In Kwarezmid, he murdered for revenge. Revenge, more than any other motivation we know of, caused that war and almost certainly increased the death toll from what would have been. I mean many of the massacres took place AFTER the conquests!!

In any case, on a smaller scale, killing all or many members of a village or city occurred quite often. Ever heard of the Aztecs? Or the Jurchen? etc.. Genocide was quite common in the past PhinPhan1227, though the scale was obviously different.


I already gave my argument if you cared to read it. Siege warfare took a massive toll on civilians through disease and hunger. It was not infrequent for entire cities to die from an extended siege. By surrenduring outright, the population was for the most part saved.

Now, on a small scall mass murder has certainly taken place. But you are talking tribal and city levels, not true genocide. Actually, I would argue that the first true genocidal attempt was that of the US government against the American Indian. The Aztecs aren't an example of PURPOSEFUL genocide. The Spanish wanted slaves, not corpses.

ckb2001
06-18-2007, 06:00 PM
I already gave my argument if you cared to read it. Siege warfare took a massive toll on civilians through disease and hunger. It was not infrequent for entire cities to die from an extended siege. By surrenduring outright, the population was for the most part saved.

Now, on a small scall mass murder has certainly taken place. But you are talking tribal and city levels, not true genocide. Actually, I would argue that the first true genocidal attempt was that of the US government against the American Indian. The Aztecs aren't an example of PURPOSEFUL genocide. The Spanish wanted slaves, not corpses.

Yeah, I read what you wrote and I gave a response to it. Let me show you some stats:
http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/warstat0.htm

You'll see there that the Mongol conquests seem to have killed an estimated 40 million, which is as much as Mao Zedong (much of which was due to famine), and is only behind WW2 at 55 million.

Now, if you scroll down, you'll find a book on the Mongols says:

QUOTE:
"Man make a rough guess that 1.25M people were killed in Khwarezm in two years-- that's 25% of 5M original inhabitants."
----------------

The point is when compared to many other conquests by other conquerers, the Mongols well outdid them in terms of genocide and numbers killed. Like I said, many of those killed came AFTER the conquests. It was a conquest based on revenge, not just based on acquiring territory.

So, what you need to do is show me the traditional method of siege warfare when conquering similar territory with similar population levels produced that level of destruction. You may find individual cases where much of the population died, but by and large, Genghis Khan's method produced more casualties than the traditional methods of conquests, at least in Kwarezm.


Oh, and as far as genocide and American natives are concerned, some scholars agree genocide, or at least as you put it "purposeful" mass murders, was involved:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genocides_in_history#1500_to_1914

"But while introduced disease devastated native populations, colonial brutality and economic dislocation also played significant roles. Rummel, for example, estimates a total of approximately 13.7 million democides (deliberate killings) of native Americans in the colonial and post-colonial eras.[6]"
------------------

And for our purposes, "democide" is more accurate than the strict legal definition of "genocide". Democide is defined as "The murder of any person or people by a government, including genocide, politicide, and mass murder"
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democide)

PhinPhan1227
06-18-2007, 11:50 PM
Yeah, I read what you wrote and I gave a response to it. Let me show you some stats:
http://users.erols.com/mwhite28/warstat0.htm

You'll see there that the Mongol conquests seem to have killed an estimated 40 million, which is as much as Mao Zedong (much of which was due to famine), and is only behind WW2 at 55 million.

Now, if you scroll down, you'll find a book on the Mongols says:

QUOTE:
"Man make a rough guess that 1.25M people were killed in Khwarezm in two years-- that's 25% of 5M original inhabitants."
----------------

The point is when compared to many other conquests by other conquerers, the Mongols well outdid them in terms of genocide and numbers killed. Like I said, many of those killed came AFTER the conquests. It was a conquest based on revenge, not just based on acquiring territory.

So, what you need to do is show me the traditional method of siege warfare when conquering similar territory with similar population levels produced that level of destruction. You may find individual cases where much of the population died, but by and large, Genghis Khan's method produced more casualties than the traditional methods of conquests, at least in Kwarezm.


Oh, and as far as genocide and American natives are concerned, some scholars agree genocide, or at least as you put it "purposeful" mass murders, was involved:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genocides_in_history#1500_to_1914

"But while introduced disease devastated native populations, colonial brutality and economic dislocation also played significant roles. Rummel, for example, estimates a total of approximately 13.7 million democides (deliberate killings) of native Americans in the colonial and post-colonial eras.[6]"
------------------

And for our purposes, "democide" is more accurate than the strict legal definition of "genocide". Democide is defined as "The murder of any person or people by a government, including genocide, politicide, and mass murder"
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democide)

None of that matter CKB. Because regardless of whether Genghis used traditional sige warfare, or the "surrender or die" tactic, those follow up deaths likely would have occured anyway. The savings in lives came from those cities which didn't undergo siege. Simply from escaping the innevitable disease which such warfare brings you have a savings in lives overall. Disease has always killed more people in warfare than actual weapons. This is no different.

ckb2001
06-18-2007, 11:59 PM
None of that matter CKB. Because regardless of whether Genghis used traditional sige warfare, or the "surrender or die" tactic, those follow up deaths likely would have occured anyway. The savings in lives came from those cities which didn't undergo siege. Simply from escaping the innevitable disease which such warfare brings you have a savings in lives overall. Disease has always killed more people in warfare than actual weapons. This is no different.

The difference is that Genghis Khan ordered the massacre of whole populations in Khwarezm out of revenge. This was NOT the same tactic used previously, where the ONLY purpose of massacre was to make future conquest easier. You won't find 25% of the populace of northern China killed as a result of Genghis Khan prior to the invasion of Khwarezm.

So, compared to even his own previous conquests, the percentage of dead far exceeded what was the norm. This is the equivalent of what we today call genocide, and it happened on a massive scale. So, no I don't see an argument suggesting that those deaths were inevitable, since we have similar situations (without the deliberate massacre for reasons other than psychological warfare) to compare it to.

PhinPhan1227
06-19-2007, 12:24 AM
The difference is that Genghis Khan ordered the massacre of whole populations in Khwarezm out of revenge. This was NOT the same tactic used previously, where the ONLY purpose of massacre was to make future conquest easier. You won't find 25% of the populace of northern China killed as a result of Genghis Khan prior to the invasion of Khwarezm.

So, compared to even his own previous conquests, the percentage of dead far exceeded what was the norm. This is the equivalent of what we today call genocide, and it happened on a massive scale. So, no I don't see an argument suggesting that those deaths were inevitable, since we have similar situations (without the deliberate massacre for reasons other than psychological warfare) to compare it to.

I was refering to the fact that regardless of his methods of warfare, those people still die because he just wanted them to die.

The difference between those killings and genocide however is that he wasn't trying to wipe a whole "people" off the map. He wasn't trying to kill all ethnic Chinese, just the people in a political region.

In Darfur, they are killing people because of the color of theri skin, not because of who they vote for.

ckb2001
06-19-2007, 01:05 AM
I was refering to the fact that regardless of his methods of warfare, those people still die because he just wanted them to die.

The difference between those killings and genocide however is that he wasn't trying to wipe a whole "people" off the map. He wasn't trying to kill all ethnic Chinese, just the people in a political region.

In Darfur, they are killing people because of the color of theri skin, not because of who they vote for.

He WAS trying to wipe out entire populations, regardless of how you label that population. This was his revenge for the killing of his ambassadors. And that IS an example of genocide, since that was a systematic and planned extermination of an entire nation or political group.

Here's a definition:
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/genocide

That he managed to "only" kill 1/4 of the populace doesn't detract from that, especially since many were killed after the conquest.

And evidence suggests many of "those people" would NOT have died otherwise. The stats tell you that. 25% of the populace was killed by Genghis Khan in those 2 years in Khwarezm. Most campaigns by Genghis Khan prior to that didn't end with that high a percentage killed.

And again, the proper term here is democide, which refers to any murder by government, not genocide, especially if you're going to lump stuff from Mao, Stalin and others from the past in comparison (otherwise, you can't list all deaths due to say Stalin as the result of genocide for example).

PhinPhan1227
06-19-2007, 03:40 PM
He WAS trying to wipe out entire populations, regardless of how you label that population. This was his revenge for the killing of his ambassadors. And that IS an example of genocide, since that was a systematic and planned extermination of an entire nation or political group.

Here's a definition:
http://www.thefreedictionary.com/genocide

That he managed to "only" kill 1/4 of the populace doesn't detract from that, especially since many were killed after the conquest.

And evidence suggests many of "those people" would NOT have died otherwise. The stats tell you that. 25% of the populace was killed by Genghis Khan in those 2 years in Khwarezm. Most campaigns by Genghis Khan prior to that didn't end with that high a percentage killed.

And again, the proper term here is democide, which refers to any murder by government, not genocide, especially if you're going to lump stuff from Mao, Stalin and others from the past in comparison (otherwise, you can't list all deaths due to say Stalin as the result of genocide for example).

I'm saying that the "democide" you're referring to has nothing to do with his methods of conquest, thus they would have died anyway regardless of whether he used siege tactics, or terror tactics.

Oh, and for the record, I said genocide, and I meant genocide. Especially in the original sense, deriving from the word "genus". Wiping out of a distinct people, as we are seeing in Darfur, not the people of a nation which is only a political unit.

ckb2001
06-19-2007, 07:29 PM
I'm saying that the "democide" you're referring to has nothing to do with his methods of conquest, thus they would have died anyway regardless of whether he used siege tactics, or terror tactics.

Oh, and for the record, I said genocide, and I meant genocide. Especially in the original sense, deriving from the word "genus". Wiping out of a distinct people, as we are seeing in Darfur, not the people of a nation which is only a political unit.

Yeah, well the stats suggest not as many people would have died. I mean we have estimates to compare the result of the methods used in Khwarezm to methods used in other conquests. And rarely do you see anything on the order of 25% killed. So, the evidence isn't there to suggest they would have died anyway.

And as far as the use of the word "genocide" is concerned, even if you insist on using it what you said is inaccurate. You said this:

QUOTE:
"I'd say that the biggest difference is that those migrations didn't involve genocide".
-------------------

Well, that's false. By the way, the last statement in that post where you said " 'No quarter' is a recent development in human evolution." is also false. There are lots of examples of "no quarter" being given in the past.

So, insisting on genocide won't make what you said accurate. However, using democide instead allows for a better comparison of total deaths, since you don't have to worry about whether the deaths fit the strict definition of genocide then.

PhinPhan1227
06-20-2007, 03:53 PM
Yeah, well the stats suggest not as many people would have died. I mean we have estimates to compare the result of the methods used in Khwarezm to methods used in other conquests. And rarely do you see anything on the order of 25% killed. So, the evidence isn't there to suggest they would have died anyway.

And as far as the use of the word "genocide" is concerned, even if you insist on using it what you said is inaccurate. You said this:

QUOTE:
"I'd say that the biggest difference is that those migrations didn't involve genocide".
-------------------

Well, that's false. By the way, the last statement in that post where you said " 'No quarter' is a recent development in human evolution." is also false. There are lots of examples of "no quarter" being given in the past.

So, insisting on genocide won't make what you said accurate. However, using democide instead allows for a better comparison of total deaths, since you don't have to worry about whether the deaths fit the strict definition of genocide then.

What you continue to fail to recognize CKB is that THOSE deaths were the result of revenge, as you said. They are a seperate issue from the normal conquests of the Mongols, and as such, not a part of that discusion. What part of that eludes you?

And when I said "no quarter", I was referring again to genocidal acts, not individual acts. Of course "no quarter" has been used for as long as mankind has waged war.

But in general, mankinds conflicts for most of his history consisted of either conquering enemies, or pushing them out. It's incredibly wasteful and expensive to try to wipe a whole ethnic group off the planet. The systematic act of doing so is for the most part a much more recent development in human history.

Megatron
06-20-2007, 03:54 PM
What you continue to fail to recognize CKB is that THOSE deaths were the result of revenge, as you said. They are a seperate issue from the normal conquests of the Mongols, and as such, not a part of that discusion. What part of that eludes you?

And when I said "no quarter", I was referring again to genocidal acts, not individual acts. Of course "no quarter" has been used for as long as mankind has waged war.

But in general, mankinds conflicts for most of his history consisted of either conquering enemies, or pushing them out. It's incredibly wasteful and expensive to try to wipe a whole ethnic group off the planet. The systematic act of doing so is for the most part a much more recent development in human history.You've read the Old Testament right?

PhinPhan1227
06-20-2007, 04:16 PM
You've read the Old Testament right?

Yep. But I view the OT as a group of lesson telling stories, not a history book. I give as much credence to the story of Gilgamesh and his flood as I do to Noahs. All of it is probably based on some factual events, but I doubt that almost any of them are even close to exactly right.

Again, slaughtering a whole race or ethnicity of people just isn't that EASY without disease or some other mass factor.

ckb2001
06-20-2007, 05:25 PM
What you continue to fail to recognize CKB is that THOSE deaths were the result of revenge, as you said. They are a seperate issue from the normal conquests of the Mongols, and as such, not a part of that discusion. What part of that eludes you?

And when I said "no quarter", I was referring again to genocidal acts, not individual acts. Of course "no quarter" has been used for as long as mankind has waged war.

But in general, mankinds conflicts for most of his history consisted of either conquering enemies, or pushing them out. It's incredibly wasteful and expensive to try to wipe a whole ethnic group off the planet. The systematic act of doing so is for the most part a much more recent development in human history.

The last paragraph I have no argument with. The second paragraph is fine, except that genocidal acts involving "no quarter" have existed for a long time - that's not a recent development.

And the first paragraph would be OK if our debate was on another topic, not the topic we were on, which was whether genocide existed (not just isolated examples) in the past. Well, sure they did, and one very good example was Khwarezm. Remember? That's what the topic was to which cnc66 and I gave the Mongols as a counter-example (to your claim many of these migrations didn't involve genocide).

It was in response to that counter-example that you brought up the argument of "they would have died anyway", which is likely false (just using statistics). The question had to do with genocide and migrations (of people in Central Asia), not what was a "normal" conquest or not.

PhinPhan1227
06-20-2007, 06:47 PM
The last paragraph I have no argument with. The second paragraph is fine, except that genocidal acts involving "no quarter" have existed for a long time - that's not a recent development.

And the first paragraph would be OK if our debate was on another topic, not the topic we were on, which was whether genocide existed (not just isolated examples) in the past. Well, sure they did, and one very good example was Khwarezm. Remember? That's what the topic was to which cnc66 and I gave the Mongols as a counter-example (to your claim many of these migrations didn't involve genocide).

It was in response to that counter-example that you brought up the argument of "they would have died anyway", which is likely false (just using statistics). The question had to do with genocide and migrations (of people in Central Asia), not what was a "normal" conquest or not.

There will of course be isolated exceptions to any rule. But the example of Genghis Khan you are using is almost the exception which proves the rule. You have one person, who through personal insult wanted a whole group wiped out. In Darfur we have a whole group who wants to wipe out another whole group. Not push them out, not take what they have, not conquer them. They want to exterminate them. And no, in ancient times, you generally didn't see a whole group of people trying to exterminate another whole group of people.

ckb2001
06-20-2007, 07:12 PM
There will of course be isolated exceptions to any rule. But the example of Genghis Khan you are using is almost the exception which proves the rule. You have one person, who through personal insult wanted a whole group wiped out. In Darfur we have a whole group who wants to wipe out another whole group. Not push them out, not take what they have, not conquer them. They want to exterminate them. And no, in ancient times, you generally didn't see a whole group of people trying to exterminate another whole group of people.

That one person in Genghis Khan is just the leader of a group, no different than leaders of other groups. Many books will equally say it was the Mongols that went on a campaign of extermination in Khwarezm.

The question is was is more or less likely that warring parties would initiate such extermination campaigns in the 20th/21st century or in the 12th/13th (or any other period, say of length 100 years)?

That question I can't answer, but I can tell you I would be surprised if we are more likely to see such campaigns today than in the past. Since you have argued it was different in the past, do you have any stats to back that up? I'll do some googling later on this. It IS an interesting question no doubt.

PhinPhan1227
06-20-2007, 07:56 PM
That one person in Genghis Khan is just the leader of a group, no different than leaders of other groups. Many books will equally say it was the Mongols that went on a campaign of extermination in Khwarezm.

The question is was is more or less likely that warring parties would initiate such extermination campaigns in the 20th/21st century or in the 12th/13th (or any other period, say of length 100 years)?

That question I can't answer, but I can tell you I would be surprised if we are more likely to see such campaigns today than in the past. Since you have argued it was different in the past, do you have any stats to back that up? I'll do some googling later on this. It IS an interesting question no doubt.


I think it just comes down to technology. Again, it isn't easy to wipe out a whole group of people. Technology discovered in the 20th century makes it a lot easier. Most ancient peoples just didn't have the time or resources, especially not when their enemies would rather leave than be exterminated.

ckb2001
06-21-2007, 01:51 AM
I think it just comes down to technology. Again, it isn't easy to wipe out a whole group of people. Technology discovered in the 20th century makes it a lot easier. Most ancient peoples just didn't have the time or resources, especially not when their enemies would rather leave than be exterminated.

Doesn't look that way even based on a quick wiki search:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:David_Kernow/List_of_massacres_involving_thousands_of_people

Note the following:

334 BCE Destruction of Thebes c.6,000 to 8,000 Greece

Alexander the Great slaughters the population of the city following a revolt. (Subsequently Alexander massacres at least a quarter of a million city dwellers at Sindimana, Gaza and other locations.)


* 150 BCE Lusitanian Massacres c.8,000 Spain

Roman troops under Galba massacre Lusitani citizens after convincing them to surrender.


* 1098 Siege of Antioch c.20,000 Antioch, Syria

Almost all Muslim inhabitants slaughtered after the fall of the city to the Crusaders.


* 1099 First Crusade c.70,000 Jerusalem

Almost all Muslim and Jewish inhabitants slaughtered after the fall of the city to the Crusaders.


1221 Herat massacre 600,000 Herat

Genghis Khan's Mongols destroy the city and massacre the population.


* 1289 Siege of Tripoli c.10,000 Palestine

Muslim conquest of Crusader state; virtually the whole population killed.


1291 Siege of Tyre 10,000 Tyre, Palestine

Baibars' army destroys the city and massacres the population.

etc..
etc..
---------------------


I could go on and on.. just look at that list (for starters). Massacres of the entire population were easily as common throughout history as in the modern day. The difference is science. Through science, more people exist on the planet, allowing potentially more to be killed at any given time. And through science, the weapons of war are far more destructive, allowing more to be killed.

But, it's quite clear genocides and attempts to exterminate entire populations were quite common in the past.

PhinPhan1227
06-22-2007, 09:33 AM
Doesn't look that way even based on a quick wiki search:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:David_Kernow/List_of_massacres_involving_thousands_of_people

Note the following:

334 BCE Destruction of Thebes c.6,000 to 8,000 Greece

Alexander the Great slaughters the population of the city following a revolt. (Subsequently Alexander massacres at least a quarter of a million city dwellers at Sindimana, Gaza and other locations.)


* 150 BCE Lusitanian Massacres c.8,000 Spain

Roman troops under Galba massacre Lusitani citizens after convincing them to surrender.


* 1098 Siege of Antioch c.20,000 Antioch, Syria

Almost all Muslim inhabitants slaughtered after the fall of the city to the Crusaders.


* 1099 First Crusade c.70,000 Jerusalem

Almost all Muslim and Jewish inhabitants slaughtered after the fall of the city to the Crusaders.


1221 Herat massacre 600,000 Herat

Genghis Khan's Mongols destroy the city and massacre the population.


* 1289 Siege of Tripoli c.10,000 Palestine

Muslim conquest of Crusader state; virtually the whole population killed.


1291 Siege of Tyre 10,000 Tyre, Palestine

Baibars' army destroys the city and massacres the population.

etc..
etc..
---------------------


I could go on and on.. just look at that list (for starters). Massacres of the entire population were easily as common throughout history as in the modern day. The difference is science. Through science, more people exist on the planet, allowing potentially more to be killed at any given time. And through science, the weapons of war are far more destructive, allowing more to be killed.

But, it's quite clear genocides and attempts to exterminate entire populations were quite common in the past.


I would dispute the accuracy of "whole populations wiped out" claims for those time periods. Sure, small villages and even small towns, but not the big cities. Notice that for Alexander, they give the total numbers for a NUMBER of population centers. And even then it's just estimates. Just because a city is left without inhabitants doesn't mean they were all killed. It is much more likely that most fled while others died. Just consider numbers. The average invading or besieging army is small when compared to the total population of the city they are besieging. They may outnumber that cities soldiers by 3-1, but the total population will likely be several times their size. So are we to expect that while they were watching their fellow citizens being massacred, the rest of the population just sat around waiting for their turn? Most of them will run away.

So while I'm sure that much of the "massacre's" took place, it's just MUCH more difficult to perpetrate truly wholesale slaughter with a sword. One man can only kill one person at a time. It's a lot easier with a machine gun, poison gas, plague, and other mass weapons.

ckb2001
06-22-2007, 01:43 PM
I would dispute the accuracy of "whole populations wiped out" claims for those time periods. Sure, small villages and even small towns, but not the big cities. Notice that for Alexander, they give the total numbers for a NUMBER of population centers. And even then it's just estimates. Just because a city is left without inhabitants doesn't mean they were all killed. It is much more likely that most fled while others died. Just consider numbers. The average invading or besieging army is small when compared to the total population of the city they are besieging. They may outnumber that cities soldiers by 3-1, but the total population will likely be several times their size. So are we to expect that while they were watching their fellow citizens being massacred, the rest of the population just sat around waiting for their turn? Most of them will run away.

So while I'm sure that much of the "massacre's" took place, it's just MUCH more difficult to perpetrate truly wholesale slaughter with a sword. One man can only kill one person at a time. It's a lot easier with a machine gun, poison gas, plague, and other mass weapons.

Well, I'll respond to evidence :wink:

Keep in mind that whether such massacres take place depend more on the intentions of the army rather than their technological prowess.

PhinPhan1227
06-22-2007, 01:54 PM
Well, I'll respond to evidence :wink:

Keep in mind that whether such massacres take place depend more on the intentions of the army rather than their technological prowess.

Intentions are limited by feasability. An army of 25k men can certainly conquer a city of 150k citizens. But how are those 25k men going to keep those 150k people from scattering to the winds once they take the city?

ckb2001
06-22-2007, 01:59 PM
Intentions are limited by feasability. An army of 25k men can certainly conquer a city of 150k citizens. But how are those 25k men going to keep those 150k people from scattering to the winds once they take the city?

The conquests of Khwarezm were of cities mostly located in the Steppes and desert. It's not difficult to slaughter almost everyone in a city in such cases, especially if the army is on horseback.

Anyway, present evidence for your claim. An opinion doesn't suffice.

PhinPhan1227
06-22-2007, 02:09 PM
The conquests of Khwarezm were of cities mostly located in the Steppes and desert. It's not difficult to slaughter almost everyone in a city in such cases, especially if the army is on horseback.

Anyway, present evidence for your claim. An opinion doesn't suffice.

And Alexanders conquests were in Greece in very hospitable environments with ready access to water. Easy to slip away in those cases.

You can ignore this claim if you like CKB. With my "net" facilties limited I just don't have time to present you the cases of "reasonable error" for such claims that whole cities were wiped out. It falls along the same lines as things we have discussed in the past. Historians make better headlines when they can make things sentational, just like scientists. As such, things get exagerated in the media and in reports.

ckb2001
06-22-2007, 02:18 PM
And Alexanders conquests were in Greece in very hospitable environments with ready access to water. Easy to slip away in those cases.

You can ignore this claim if you like CKB. With my "net" facilties limited I just don't have time to present you the cases of "reasonable error" for such claims that whole cities were wiped out. It falls along the same lines as things we have discussed in the past. Historians make better headlines when they can make things sentational, just like scientists. As such, things get exagerated in the media and in reports.

I'll ignore the claim until you have evidence. I've presented evidence for my claim so far.