Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Castles

A modern chess piece for a modern war.
  (+6, -26)(+6, -26)(+6, -26)
(+6, -26)
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This idea is to be used in mainly urban settings.

Design and contruct hundreds of moveable castles. (like the chess piece, one tower). They would have a triangular roof wich would over hang the viewports, to protect from mortars and rockets.

These towers would be 5 stories high and have 5 ft thick steel reinforced concrete walls. The base would be surrounded by concrete barriers and sand bags. They would be occupied by up to 4 soldiers who would spend a day or two in any given tower.

Each tower would have a weeks food and water supply as well as sanitation services.

To get into the tower a bulldozer which is part of a convoy, would pull out a heavy steel and concrete door at the base of the tower. The soldiers would exit and fresh ones would enter.

The towers would have all the advanced communication equipment. As well as fire control systems and biological/chemical filters.

The towers would be moveable, but once in position would probably be a fixed part of the urban surroundings.

From their perch the soldiers could control a whole city block, they could radio in air strikes or reign fire down with a the towers main armament of miniguns.

I imagine that after a main army force has moved through a city, hundred of these pre-made towers are dragged into place on the street corners, thus controling the city and protecting convoys.

Antegrity, Oct 22 2005

Office Block Chess Office_20Block_20Chess
by Aristotle. Betterer. [calum, Oct 24 2005]

Helepolis http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helepolis
[Shz, Oct 26 2005]

Iraqi poll: attacks against police not justified http://i.a.cnn.net/.../iraq.poll.4.28.pdf
[Madai, Oct 27 2005]

Not Gomer pile. http://www.defensel...005_2005020407.html
[Madai, Oct 27 2005]

These guys weren't Gomer either. http://icasualties....if/IraqiDeaths.aspx
[Madai, Oct 27 2005]

Maginot line http://victorhanson...s/hanson051905.html
If you see how this relates to the maginot line, you get a gold star for the day. [Madai, Oct 27 2005]

RUC Tower http://www.chrisand...om/belfast/cage.jpg
- common in Belfast and Derry [zen_tom, Oct 27 2005]

[link]






       Towers would be able survive virtual siege conditions. They would have enough ammunition to fight for days. It is higly unlikely that a tower would be siege for a long period of time. Towers would operate in a grid fashion and each tower could support the next.
Antegrity, Oct 22 2005
  

       How would they fare against a large truck bomb especially a driverless one?
bristolz, Oct 22 2005
  

       Or a wad of C-4 and one man-hole cover.   

       Very well given the fact that the first 3.5 stories are solid concrete with the exception of a circular stairway running right down the center. The towers are wider and thicker at the base of course. Supplemented by additional concrete barriers.
Antegrity, Oct 22 2005
  

       Two things would happen if this system was put into place.   

       1. Insurgents would spend a good deal of time trying to bring down the towers. The would realize that doing so would take more time than it takes for a support fleet of gunships to arrive and relieve the tower. They would take mass lossses and give up.   

       2. Same as the above but after realizing that they cant bring down the towers, insurgents move out of the cities where they are promptly shelled by crusader mobile artilery.
Antegrity, Oct 22 2005
  

       How would you move them? 5ft thick concrete 5 stories high sounds awfully heavy.
Adze, Oct 22 2005
  

       Such equipment exists.
Antegrity, Oct 22 2005
  

       kind of like a moveable bunker ... this is a cool idea .. but wrong century [-]. I don't think the US is having problems in Iraq because of insufficient armor and not enough concrete. They are failing because they don't have people on the ground where it counts... they are forced to be cooked up in their tanks and inpenetrable bases. How would this tower detect insurgents moving explosives and weapons? Kind of like the US green zone ... sure it's very safe there, but if you step outside that's a different story .. you must simply be on the ground. Being in a tank doesn't count.
ixnaum, Oct 22 2005
  

       I thought it was because they dont have enough ice.
Ian Tindale, Oct 22 2005
  

       The soldiers in the tower would be there mainly to observe the streets below. They could record and foward all activity on the street. If they see someone place something they send the info to the convoys. 16 soldiers could secure 1 city block and not be in any significant danger.   

       One tower alone would have little effect but hundreds of such towers placed in supporting/dominating positions would compltely control the flow of insurgents and weapons.   

       There is a difference between being in a tank, and being in a building. You control the roof tops and have a dominant position on the street, you control the street.
Antegrity, Oct 22 2005
  

       Those bunker buster bombs that have been used against Al Queda (Qaeda?) caves in the mountains of northern Afghanistan might work as castle busters.
bristolz, Oct 23 2005
  

       Alright last time i checked the insurgents dont have an air force. This is not a stand alone design, it is put into place for enforcement.
Antegrity, Oct 24 2005
  

       You started the idea with the summary: "A modern chess piece for a modern war."
bristolz, Oct 24 2005
  

       non-similar foe? Like MS13?   

       Or do you mean when the CIA starts making noise about Bin Laden being in Western China?
Zimmy, Oct 24 2005
  

       This was a very, very good idea... 500 years ago. Mobility is the key to war in the age of mechanism.   

       And you want hundreds of these things? Sounds expensive.   

       Plus, I can't help but feel that the country where these things are built might feel a little bit like they are living in a prison. That creates enemies.
Gusbus, Oct 25 2005
  

       Baked a few hundred years BC. It’s called a Helepolis. I was a bit surprised (impressed) to find a wiki entry for this. <link>
Shz, Oct 26 2005
  

       Read the idea, the towers would have their own fresh air supply, and fire control systems. These towers would be designed to hold off attacks and maintain control on the streets until a main force arrives. If neccessary the soldiers could seal the tower until help arrives.   

       You could occupy a city with 4000 soldiers who would be in relative safety.   

       You say mobility is key to modern warfare, I would like to aim your attention to the fact that the US parks tanks and apcs on street corners and sets them there for hours.   

       The cost would be minimal. No where near the cost of a main battle tank.   

       Like I said, you control the roof tops and hold the dominant position on the street, you control the street.   

       These would be much more effective than what you can see on the news. That is, a couple soldiers mulling around outside a humvee or sitting behind some razor wire and some sandbags.
Antegrity, Oct 26 2005
  

       do they have to be steel reinforced? could we not use gfrp and make them lighter?
roy of royworld, Oct 26 2005
  

       Steel reinforced and armor bolted onto the concrete.
Antegrity, Oct 26 2005
  

       So this isn't about waging war with chess instead then?   

       OK then [Antegrity], where in this idea, is this fresh air supply that you claim is mentioned? Are you claiming that there will be several days worth of oxygen inside?   

       And is your explanation for moving a 5 story cuboid made of 5 foot thick steel-reinforced concrete really just "Such equipment exists"? Can you at least provide a reference. Or were you planning of moving these like the pyramids, and just get the Iraqi people to pull them?   

       Cost is minimal? Instead of a tank you want to build something bigger than the average building in many countries, and that will be a minimal cost?   

       And it's a hell of a lot easier to leave a tank standing for a few hours when it is relatively simple to just drive it away again later
</stunned reaction that this is actually a serious idea>
hidden truths, Oct 26 2005
  

       The Maginot, and the Siegfried Lines were largely successes, causing the enemy in each case to alter their strategy and take a second-best option - either due to their actual strength, or the perception of their strength.   

       I think this idea, as a way of occupying a hostile city is actually, rather a good one. I don't agree with occupying hostile cities, but were I to do so, I'd quite like to have a few of these at my disposal.   

       I'd have them bristling with communication and surveillance equipment, manned by sharpshooters and reconnaissance guys, and capable of holding out against attack for weeks.   

       Unfortunately, none of this is anything new. The English have been doing just this in Northern Ireland for years - it's actually quite unnerving to be walking down a perfectly normal road, turn a corner and see a huge towering monstrosity topped with lookout posts, razor wire and unfriendly looking, gun toters - even if they are supposed to be on 'your' side.   

       The latest technological version of the idea would include predator drones that can fly well above an area, conducting surveillance, and, if necessary, engage directly (if firing a missile from 000s of metres can be described as directly) with the enemy.
zen_tom, Oct 26 2005
  

       //And it's a hell of a lot easier to leave a tank standing for a few hours when it is relatively simple to just drive it away again later //   

       don't leave it round here, you'll come back and find its on bricks with its tracks removed.
po, Oct 26 2005
  

       Look at the fun everyone is having with this! The thing about modern cities is that they dont start at the ground. There are tunnels and sewers. The bane of towers is sappers. Sapping is even easier if someone has already dug the tunnel. All the reinforcements/fire control/food supply/huge freaking guns/invulnerable I tells you its invulnerable!wont matter if a hole opens up underneath. Gravity always wins. You could extend the tower down to the bedrock but there goes your mobility.   

       The maginot line is a good analogy. If you built one of these things, guerrilas would move away from it. If you set up hundreds!hundreds I tellyou! You cant escape them! the guerrilas would move to another city.   

       As regards fucking rubbish I recommend selecting moist rubbish.
bungston, Oct 26 2005
  

       I was trying to work out why you would want these in say Bolton, but hey today its Iraq, tomorrow Iran, Bolton will be on the list somewhere.   

       The things you do to get a decent curry.
Jacob Marley, Oct 26 2005
  

       At this stage even if the giant towers worked as antegrity promised, they would be counterproductive.   

       One fallacy inherent in the idea is that you ignore the fact that there are at least three tracks on which we must measure the success in iraq.   

       1. The military track 2. The political track 3. The economic track   

       This is an oversimplification, of course. Militarily, the insurgents cannot win against the US. The US has better firepower, equipment, et cetera. Your idea addresses only the military aspect.   

       The economic track is perhaps the most interesting. One hand, increased wealth in Iraq means more potential funding for the insurgents, with which they can buy weapons, etc. On the other hand, gainfully employed Iraqis, with hope for the future, have more to loose and are thus less likely to conduct operations.   

       Finally, economic success in general helps grease the wheels of the political process.   

       Finally, there's the political process. In case you have haven't noticed, the constitution was approved, but the Sunnis for the most part voted no.   

       22% of the population voted against the constitution. A lot of those voting against are anti-occupation. with the right carrots, of both economic and political nature, we can get most of this 22% to accept the constitution, but, any reminders that they are occupied will slow this process.   

       That's part why the US has been using Iraqi security forces for maintaining security/guarding, while the US forces have been conducting the bulk of the raids.   

       Being guarded by a fellow countryman makes you feel safe. Being guarded by foreigner makes you feel occupied. Had a major disruption of the constitution referendum occured, the US forces would of mobilized, but as it was, the security provided at the constitutional referedum had a very Iraqi face.   

       Towers would be counterproductive on the economic and political fronts. People would see the towers, be reminded they are occupied, and also, wonder why the fuck the US is using all that concrete to build giant tower when the US could instead let Iraqis use the concrete to build more roads, schools, et cetera.   

       These towers not tall enough to do any good in Baghdad, anyway.
Madai, Oct 26 2005
  

       The maginot line did what it was supposed to do. It was never breached by a frontal assault. It was actually the failure of a country that france thought would put up a fight, that allowed the germans into france. It took the germans a long time to destroy the maginot line after they turned back onto it; that is of couse if you read up on the subject. Fixed fortifications are an important part in modern warfare. Listening to all you guys it sounds like all of the troops spend their days running around. They never stop and sleep, they never set up command centers or patrol check points. All they do all day long is run around, and the tanks are in constant motion. Airplanes never land either, no its modern mobile warfare where nothing ever stops moving and needs to be protected. Its the end of defense. So if there is no defense, then offence is no longer the best defense. You guys have created an interesting problem.
Antegrity, Oct 27 2005
  

       This is a military problem because the US already controls the economy and the politics.   

       Politically we control them because we are forcing democracy on them.   

       Economically we control them because we control the oil.   

       "Are you claiming that there will be several days worth of oxygen inside?" NO hidden, there is no way to filter, store or purify air, its just this magical substance that we can't reproduce. I'm glad you cleared that one up.   

       "Being guarded by a fellow countryman makes you feel safe", being killed by fellow countrymen makes you feel even safer.   

       "People would see the towers, be reminded they are occupied" YEah cause its so easy to forget.   

       "You could extend the tower down to the bedrock but there goes your mobility." Bungston, read the idea again."   

       "And it's a hell of a lot easier to leave a tank standing for a few hours when it is relatively simple to just drive it away again later" Hidden your again correct, the tank drives away and leaves the area to be re-taken.   

       I will use this analogy. I go to a party, I see the cops so I drive around the corner. Sit in the car, talk on the phone, listen to the radio, pray to jesus. Walk around the corner 15-20 minutes later, the cops are gone and the party continues. Now if the cops inturn dragged a huge concrete tower right to the street corner, stored with doughnuts and coffee, I dont think I could go to that party with out them knowing. Hell I could resist. I could create a battering ram and attack the tower. I could get all my friends and lay siege to the tower. That siege would last 20 minutes, cause soon comes the tear gas and mass reinforcements.
Antegrity, Oct 27 2005
  

       //This is a military problem because the US already controls the economy and the politics.//   

       That control is *very* tentative, and closely intertwined.   

       //Politically we control them because we are forcing democracy on them.//   

       No, we aren't. No one put a gun to the head of the Iraqis to tell them to vote. In fact, some put guns to the heads of Iraqis and told them *not* to vote.   

       //Economically we control them because we control the oil.//   

       Yeah our control of the oil is going very smoothly. Um, are you nuts? Have you seen a gas station lately?   

       //being killed by fellow countrymen makes you feel even safer.//   

       That's why we've trained the security forces and police there VERY well. The Iraqi police and Iraqi Security forces have a better reputation with the people than the US forces do. Your snarky aside has no substance in the real world.   

       //"People would see the towers, be reminded they are occupied" YEah cause its so easy to forget.//   

       It's not just about forgetting. It's about having to deal with the occupation. It's about not feeling like your being watched. But, moreover, let's say you have girlfriend, and she starts to cheat on you, and then dumps you, insults your manhood, etc. Would you keep her picture around on display??   

       //the tank drives away and leaves the area to be re-taken.//   

       Fallacy. You assume that a guerilla war is about holding ground. Well, guess what? Unless you set up a checkpoint, any suicide bomber can go anywhere. A friendly local cop can tell what is suspicious and what isn't. A US soldier five stories up in a tower can only watch wondering which people down below are bombers, and which are just civilians late to work.
Madai, Oct 27 2005
  

       Correction we have put several thousand guns towards several million Iraqi's and told them now that their system of choice is going to be a democratic one.   

       Every report that has come back says that the Iraqis are at best an incompotent fighting force. They lack numbers and training.   

       I'm sick of the the REP's argument that we are fighting in a "coalition". Just like the REP's have token minorities at their rallies, the US army has token troops from other countries, to wave their pathetic flag around. TO make it seem like were not the ones doing everything. It's a farce to say that the Iraqis are well trained and capable of taking care of themselves.   

       Also, havent we learned not to arm the Arabs? All they do, ten years down the road, is turn on us and need to be dealt with again.   

       Madai, how do you suggest the US fights this war? Everything up until now, has been a failure.   

       "The Iraqi police and Iraqi Security forces have a better reputation with the people than the US forces do. Your snarky aside has no substance in the real world." Yeah I would feel real safe being gaurded by GOMER PILE.   

       "A US soldier five stories up in a tower can only watch wondering which people down below are bombers". Yeah but a US soldier with a 50 cal sniper rifle and a high powered scope can drop the man carrying the bomb from a protected position.   

       One thing. Yes I realize that the tower idea is nothing new, in old warfare. But its mass inception, with modern weaponry and technology, has yet to be explored in modern warfare.   

       Have you all missed the fact that these towers would offer support to rolling convoys? I'm not saying that the only soldiers in the city will be up in these towers. Ground patrols would still continue.
Antegrity, Oct 27 2005
  

       The real problem with these towers is that they just arent big enough to do the job right.
bungston, Oct 27 2005
  

       You can do some pretty amazing things with concrete now. The base would be protected from ramming buy additional barriers and sandbags.   

       The final tower design would be subjected to endurance and survivability tests. All towers would be built to a certain standard so as to ease the cost of mass production.
Antegrity, Oct 27 2005
  

       //Correction we have put several thousand guns towards several million Iraqi's and told them now that their system of choice is going to be a democratic one.//   

       If you think the situation is this bad... why do you think your towers will improve anything?   

       //Every report that has come back says that the Iraqis are at best an incompotent fighting force.//   

       Absolutely untrue. You need to read more news.   

       //They lack numbers and training.//   

       True, but this is improving. The numbers are going up, and the training+experience is going up.   

       //Madai, how do you suggest the US fights this war?//   

       I have posted one idea, called "chill iraq". In general, I wouldn't change our overall stategy, but we need to be more vigilent, of course, about correcting mistakes, such as prisoner abuse. I wouldn't mind having a member of Red Cross present at all interrogations, provided they only reported on the treatment of the prisoner, and kept their mouths shut about any intelligence gathered.   

       //Everything up until now, has been a failure.//   

       Two elections... one caught dictator... these are failures? Again, you need to read more news.   

       There's plenty of room for improvement with the iraqi police, but here's what the polls say:   

       81% said attacks against Iraqi police cannot be justified.   

       25% said attacks against US forces cannot be justified.   

       Basically, the iraqi police has a MUCH MUCH better reputation than the US forces.
Madai, Oct 27 2005
  

       All they understand is force. Things were much better off when Sadam was in power. He knew how to take care of these crazies.   

       The following is a republican argument. "We ousted a violent, brutal dictator, who tortured and killed thousands of his own people" So far more iraqi's have died because of the war there, than ever did under Sadam.   

       Thats not the counter to this argument though. The counter is another republican argument.   

       "Terrorists dont should not be protected under the geneva accords". "Or, Only Americans have the right to be treated justly" Thats the same thing Sadam did.
Antegrity, Oct 27 2005
  

       If this thread goes on much longer I'm going to put in a plea for him to be transferred to the halfbakery.   

       Just out of sheer curiosity [Antegrity]. Are you trying to seem like a troll? This isn't an accusation, but the vehemance that you are defending an idea that plenty of people have decided that they don't like, isn't likely to win them around. (This is just an observation, I've actually voted [+] on this)
hidden truths, Oct 27 2005
  

       Thank you hidden. No I acctually dont expect to change their minds about their vote, I am merely participating in a lively discussion. Its my idea, and im going to protect it.   

       I'm not angry or upset. The "maginot line was a failure" kinda upset me though.
Antegrity, Oct 27 2005
  

       //So far more iraqi's have died because of the war there, than ever did under Sadam.//   

       Another blatant falsehood.   

       Low end estimate of Iraqi deaths caused by Saddam is 700k. 400k dead Iraqis in the iraq-iran war, which Saddam started, and 300k Saddam murdered. That's not including the 500k children who died due to sanctions, that produced the infamous Madeline Albright quote. Or the 600k dead iranian soldiers. Or the 1 million dead iranian children used for human wave attacks and mine clearing that was moreso Iran's fault, but would not have happened but for the Iraq-Iran war.   

       But mind you... 700k is the LOWEST estimate. High end goes to 3 million or higher.   

       Highest estimate of postwar iraqi deaths was 194k as of 10/2004. Extrapolate that out, you get 300k tops.   

       But that extrapolation would, of course be total BS, because that high estimate was from the infamous Lancet study that was 95% confident somewhere between 8,000 and 194,000 had died. The media split the difference and insisted 100k had died. Meanwhile, maximum *reported* deaths is at 30k. That is, civilian deaths reported in the news. Obviously the news can't get them all. But puh-lease, how many do you think the news is actually *missing*? 270k? no way. Bodies don't just dissappear. Even assuming the media is missing 80% of the bodies is getting pretty close to silly. The media are very thorough about reporting the number of deaths in Iraq. 150k, then, is what I would call the upper end of *reasonable* estimates of Iraqi dead since the US invasion. Far less than the bare-bones minimum of 700k under Saddam.   

       Now, it is *arguable* that the Iraqis are dying faster on a *per year* basis now than they did under Saddam's average year. I.e. If you buy that the US is killing 100k/year, and saddam , over his 35 years, killed only 20k/year, then you could say that. But if you go by reported deaths, you have 30k over 2.5 years, much less than Saddam's low-end yearly rate.   

       You're entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts. Please, do a little fact checking, or at least check your phrasing.
Madai, Oct 27 2005
  

       <weeps> they are / were people...   

       each and every one of them...
po, Oct 27 2005
  

       You cant use, the Iran-Iraq war, or the people who died under sanctions as due to sadam   

       1st, We supported both Iran and Iraq in their conflict. We gave them both weapons money and inteligence. 2nd those sanctions were put into place by the UN.   

       "Lancet study that was 95% confident somewhere between 8,000 and 194,000 had died."   

       What a retartedly large number gap. Well it could be any where from 1-infinity, we did some reasearch and found out that thats how many people may have died.
Antegrity, Oct 27 2005
  

       //You cant use, the Iran-Iraq war//   

       While the nations who supported Saddam share responsibility, it was, in the end Saddam's own choice. To give him a free ride on that war is incredibly intellectually dishonest.   

       //the people who died under sanctions as due to sadam//   

       Uh, yes I can. Instead of building up his economy, he built palaces, and bribed members of the UN security council with oil vouchers.   

       //What a retartedly large number gap. //   

       Exactly. That's why anyone who reads the research has to take the 100k number with a grain of salt.   

       And Po, yes, indeed, they were people. Each and every death was tragic. Moreover, the QUALITY of their lives under a dictatorship was tragic. When the insurgency is defeated.   

       I know it breaks your heart to discuss dead people. It breaks my heart that people are still starving in North Korea and Zimbabwe, among other places. It also breaks my heart that people like Antegrity are so desparate to cast the US in a bad light that they would give murderous dictators like Saddam a free pass.   

       The US has done tons of bad things, and guess what, we're human, and will continue to do bad things. However, all in all, the US is a force for good. Or, perhaps you weren't paying attention when the US sent relief to the Bam earthquake, the tsunami victims, or the recent Kashmir quake. We even sent aid to the people of Cuba due to Wilma.   

       I know it's fashionable to call the US evil, but it shows you're not looking at the big picture.
Madai, Oct 28 2005
  

       I'm going to see a big picture tonight - it's called "Killer Zombies versus Whatever Ya Got"
xenzag, Oct 28 2005
  

       So your saying that this form of brutal inforcement. Which one could take this idea as, is not a good thing?   

       You say I am calling the US evil, when I come up with this idea.   

       I dont get what your saying, Madai.   

       Good things done by stupid people. Evil things done by brilliant people. Evil things done by stupid people. Good things done by brilliant people.   

       We are indeed human, and we will continue to make mistakes. But to ignore them on account that we rescue puppies everyonce in a while, is childish.
Antegrity, Oct 31 2005
  

       //Madai, how do you suggest the US fights this war?//   

       Step 1: Remove Bush.   

       Step 2: Remove Cheney.   

       Step 3: Apologize to the UN.   

       Step 4: Remove all US military personell to a Massive flotilla located at unknown coordinates in the Indian Ocean.   

       Step 5: Let the Democratically Electected Government of Iraq know that, if required, most of the might of the US gov't is behind them in their infancy, but they better grow up quickly, as there are soon to be other world issues that draw more heavily on the scale.   

       Step 6: Go Hard core, in speech (& if neccesary, action) on Iraq's neighbors, (& I mean ANY including Israel) should they threaten Iraq's freedom.
Zimmy, Oct 31 2005
  

       // So your saying that this form of brutal inforcement. Which one could take this idea as, is not a good thing? //   

       Excessive brutality, especially at this stage in our Iraqi operations, is a very very bad thing. Yes. Our goals are to make the Iraqi people feel freer, not feel like they are under a police state. In this situation, peoples perceptions are VERY important.   

       Zimmy, Zimmy, Zimmy...   

       // Step 1: Remove Bush. //   

       And replace him with... what? Someone unelected? If we follow the democratic route, Bush will be ending his term in '08, and by then, it will mostly be a moot point.   

       Step 2 is silly. It implies that you are going to remove Bush, and then, let Cheney be president a while, and then slowly build a case up to remove him. Steps 1 and 2 should be combined. Or better yet, you could just wait 'till '08.   

       Step 3 is even sillier. The UN is a scandal-ridden cesspool, and deserves no apology. The UN owes the the WORLD an apology for accepting Saddam's bribes.   

       Step 4 is stupid, as well. it would cost too much to maintain 140,000 troops at sea. Our force projection is adequate to the point we can just bring the troops home, if they are not needed in Iraq itself.   

       Step 5: Yeah, they'll believe that one. That's what nixon promised South Vietnam, right before congress cut the funding and let the North Vietnamese overrun them. You should read some history, because the people you will have to sell your plan to will have.   

       Step 6: This smells like, "threaten yet another country with a pre-emptive strike". You probably mean well, but you've phrased this way to simplisticly.   

       We probably will need deal with Iran, or at least create a credible threat of force. Sure, we can bomb their infrastructure to kingdom come, but that won't do the world any favors. Iran is more populous than Iraq, and the occupation of Iraq was badly handled. Logic dictates we should secure 600,000 troops or so, for a proper occupation of Iran. That will require a HUGE coalition.   

       Realistically, to do Iran right, we will need Pakistan, China, and India all on the same wavelength. At this point, we can retaliate against Iran just fine, but are in no position to credibly carry out a regime-change operation. Anything less would destablize the region, and destroy our progress in Iraq and Afghanistan.   

       Your Israel jab was funny. Israel won't attack US-friendly Iraqi democracy. More likely, they'll use iraq as a refueling stop on their way to bomb Iran. And even that is not likely.
Madai, Nov 03 2005
  

       //Realistically, to do Iran right, we will need Pakistan, China, and India all on the same wavelength.//
I would be surprised if there is much beyond catastrophic natural disasters (and I am not referring to the incumbent US president) that can get Pakistan and India on the same wavelength. But that is by the by. My question is this: when you say "to do Iran right" what do you mean by "do" and "right"?
calum, Nov 03 2005
  

       To defend myself (I shouldn't post while drinking anymore);   

       #1 & 2 --- It is my strong belief that BOTH Bush & Cheney are criminals deserving of being removed following the process established for doing so.   

       The powerful people & businesses aligned with the Bush administration are making too much money off of Iraq to give the administration any incentive to win the war, or withdraw.   

       #3 --- The UN, along with most of Europe, asked us to wait for more appropriate measures to be taken.   

       #4,5, & 6 --- For the very short term. A much shorter term than US forces will remain IN Iraq as it stands now.   

       Yeah, Saddam was probably Evil. The US, which is supposed to be governed by us, the citizens, is responsible for a mounting number of Iraqi deaths (civilian & military) that would compare as a significant fraction of the deaths Saddam caused.   

       We took away their right to political self determination and gave them a different one because we didn't think they were doing it right.   

       I'd be mad as hell if that happened to my country.
I'm pretty mad that 2000 poor families in the US have buried their child due to LIES.
  

       We had less wounded US servicemen in the American Revolution than in Iraq. I believe we've also taken 1/2 the death toll of the American Revolution In Iraq.   

       (sorry I went off on a tangent.)   

       "do Iran right" Iran's terrain is vastly different from Iraq. Invading would be a colossal mistake. Unless I am mistaken, they don't have ICBMs & are not currently a threat to US sovereignty.
Zimmy, Nov 03 2005
  

       Many things, Calum. War is a horrible thing, and I don't have any info on Iranian particulars, so, mainly I'm talking about not repeating the mistakes we made with Iraq.   

       First, of course, we must neutralize the Iranian regular military. This is the easy part. They'll have guerillas to mount an insurgency for years to come, but any anti-aircraft capabilities, tanks, planes, etc, will be taken care of in a matter of months.   

       Second, and most importantly, we must prevent a humanitarian crisis. We must make sure Iranians get the food, water, and medical attention they need, or they will simply spill over into neighboring countries.   

       Third, but in conjunction with #3, we must prevent looting. Weapons caches, nuclear facilities, and museums, and many other things I can't think of at the moment, must be secured against theifs and vandals.   

       And that's just scratching the surface. Invading Iraq was nightmarish, but didn't impact world security much because the country was already run-down and in a siege mentality. A humanitarian didn't materialize, the iraqi people were well prepared.   

       The iranian people won't be ready for invasion. Many will starve unless the US takes tremendous efforts.   

       India and Pakistan will need to be managed. We obviously do not want to destablize Pakistan, and we will need India's cooperation in order to keep Pakistan together while Iran is stablized. All in all, Iran will be at a minimum 5X more difficult to invade than Iraq.   

       I realy hope we don't have to invade Iran, but if things keep going as they are, we might not have a choice. Saudi Arabia and Europe might end up begging the US to start bombing.   

       Bush knows this. Worse, Iran knows it, that's why they are rattling the saber. There's SOME rational people over there. I'm just worried about how much power the rational ones have over the irrational ones.   

       Hopefully, the threat of force will be enough to get Iran to back down. Right now, the threat of force simply isn't credible. Iran is going to have to piss more people off before a coalition can be built big enough to handle the job. Bush is too discredited. It will be up to his predecessor to take care of it, along with help from as yet unmaterialized allies.   

       I hope that answers your question. I could say more, but I really don't like thinking about the possibility of Iranian war. Back when we were helping them recover from Bam, I was way more optimistic about diplomacy working. Nowadays diplomacy with Iran is looking pretty bleak.   

       Iran's current involvement with Iraq is very complex. Insurgents are infiltrating from Iran, but in small numbers, and with no overt government support. Meanwhile Iranians are a boon to Iraq's tourism industry.   

       It would be ideal if we could treat it as a police action rather than go military. It should be possible to eliminate the terrorists without disrupting the flow of tourists.   

       Of course, the situation is even more complex than I am aware of. I hope you see the bind the US is was in. Saddam was bad enough that the choice was relatively clear. But with Iran, it's way more muddled.
Madai, Nov 03 2005
  

       I may point out that the "reason" for everyone being upset w/ Iran is supposedly their unwillingness to adhere to the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty, No?   

       This was agreed to in the 1970 & the treaty asked that non-nuclear nations refrain from developing nuclear weapons in exchange for an eventual nuclear dis-armament by nuclear weapon holding nations. (As I remember it).   

       It's been 35 years, No dis-armament has occurred.
Are we holding up our end of the treaty?
Does anyone make noise about Invading the nuclear holding countries for non-compliance?
Zimmy, Nov 03 2005
  

       //It is my strong belief that BOTH Bush & Cheney are criminals deserving of being removed following the process established for doing so.//   

       You can fantasize about this all you want, but unless you can dislodge a LOT of republicans from office, it will remain a fantasy. 2006 might be an interesting year, if the dems get some traction. Frankly I think they are stuck in 2004 mode: They will run on Bush-hate and fail. Bush-hate plays well to a good chunk, maybe 20%, of the population, but turns off the swing voters. Good luck, though.   

       // The UN, along with most of Europe, asked us to wait for more appropriate measures to be taken. //   

       The UN was stalling because they knew the oil-for-food scandal would tarnish them. The UN is in desparate need of reform. You don't seem to be acknowledging this. All your cries of cronyism and halliburton this and halliburton that are absolutely DWARFED by the cronyism and corruption of the oil-for-food scandal.   

       //For the very short term.// Exactly, the short term. We'll have okinawa-style bases in Iraq for a while, at their request, especially if Iran keeps rattling the saber. But the December 15 elections, if they go as smoothly as the constitution vote did, will spell the beginning of the end of the occupation. Already the US-trained security forced have suffered more casualities then the US have: in 2005 alone 2209 have gave their lives fighting against the terrorists.   

       US forces didn't go to war based on "lies". WMD was only one of a laundry list of reasons why we went to Iraq. Look up HJ res 114, the resolution that authorized use of force in Iraq. 296 congressmen voted for it, after seeings the exact same intelligence the pres had. 77 senators, likewise.   

       This war is way bigger than Bush, and your Bush-hate is blinding you to that fact. if you don't believe me, you may want to read up on the riots in France.   

       **edit**   

       heh heh, we are posting simultaneously which is bad for long posts.   

       The nuclear issues are just one factor. There's more. Iran is supporter of terrorism. They have done a little bit of cooperation with respect to Al Qaeda, but not enough. They have armed the Palestians in the past, prolonging the horrible conflict and increasing Palestinian loss of life. Iran may see the arms as giving the Palestinians aid, but in the short term, the arming of the Palestinians has proved disastrous for them.   

       In addition to Iran's support of terror, there is the humanitarian issues. Some humanitarian issues are caused by the goverment, such as the political hangings, stonings, etc, but some of them are caused because of the poverty and despair. Iran has a huge brain drain problem, wherein their smartest people leave to become doctors in richer, freer countries. A freer Iran would cause many intelligent expats to come back and help rebuild, as Iraqi expats did in the Iraqi case.   

       The expat situation is a double-edged sword: many iraqi expats, eager to overthrow Saddam, fed bogus intelligence to anyone who would listen. Surely some iranian expats equally hate the theocracy, and are feeding the CIA some bogus lines, in order to try and get some action.   

       So, there's the nuclear issue, the terror issue, and the humanitarian issue, as least. Right now, the situation, horrible as it is, is not bad enough to justify the tremendous cost of a war. But one day, it might be, and we should be prepared to invade Iran in 2009, when Bush is gone, and his predecessor will have to make some hard choices as to how to continue the war on terror.   

       Frankly, I hope it's a dem, like Hillary. She'll castrate the anti-war left, and be tough on terror. Some republicans will whine about her, but she'll get the dems to start taking the war on terror seriously.
Madai, Nov 03 2005
  

       "WITH, With .. with .. with.... WITHOUT".
Zimmy, Nov 03 2005
  

       Make thousands of thse towers. PLace them mnext to each other in the main cities in iraq. Remove most of the main force to go deal with Hugo Chavez. Leave a small mabye 25000 troops in heavily fortified air bases to support the towers.
Antegrity, Nov 03 2005
  

       Chavez is not a threat. He was fairly elected. He is a Castro-loving dinosaur. Invading his country would be pointless. As are your stupid useless castles.   

       You are now just as loony as Pat Robertson. Maybe the two of you can form an elite strike force and invade Venezuela. Pat Robertson can drive the Jesusmobile and tow your giant useless tower along behind it.
Madai, Nov 03 2005
  

       I don't think the towers in the main idea are really worth the cost. Unless these things have deep embedding anchors, it would not be too hard to topple one with enough explosives taking out the ground underneath one side.   

       At least [Madai] & I agree that I despise dubya to a level that may perhaps influence my ability to be objective ([Madai] probably thinks this influence is heavier than do I)   

       If we make any posturing towards Iran, I think we probably cede the defense of Taiwan, If that has not already happened.   

       I don't know China well enough to know their response to our getting into another conflict (We both agree Iran would be much more entangling than Iraq). - Does Beijing have designs on Pyongyang? Seoul? Tokyo? Ha Noi? -- It would be very difficult to oppose them if we were involved in Iran, Iraq, & Afghanistan (or possibly Iran alone).
Zimmy, Nov 04 2005
  

       //It took a germans a long time to destroy the maginot line after then turned back onto it; that is of couse if you read up on the subject.//   

       Ha! You're wrong.   

       Without looking it up, My memory says the German Army busted the Maginot line at its weakest point in less than 2 days. Once broken through, The blitzkreig philosophy is in conflict with your statement that they had to turn back on the line. Paris fell within weeks of the fall of the Maginot line.
Zimmy, Nov 04 2005
  

       Daytime The Maginot Line is attacked and broken at Saarbrucken and Colmar   

       June 16, 1940   

       Time Event Morning French Premier Reynaud, whose government was in exile, resigns. Daytime British battleship Revenge arrives in Halifax, Canada, with 40 million Pounds Sterling in gold, for safekeeping. Daytime Germany forms its first specialized night-fighter plane unit. Daytime Marshal Henri Pétain takes over the government of France.   

       June 17, 1940   

       Time Event Morning France requests an armistice with Germany. Evening Churchill decides de Gaulle should be recognized as speaking for France, not Marshal Pétain. Night British Bomber Command launches 138 aircraft on Germany, primarily on oil targets. Only one plane does not return.   

       June 18, 1940   

       Time Event Morning In Canada, Prime Minister Mackenzie King introduces the National Resources Mobilization Act in the House of Commons. Morning Germany threatens action if Swedish railways don't permit transport of German troops and supplies to Norway. Daytime Sweden receives notice from Britain indicating that Britain might have to make peace with Germany. Daytime Churchill speaks to Parliament: “What General Weygand called the Battle of France is over. The Battle of Britain is about to begin.” Daytime French General de Gaulle becomes the leader of "Free France". He refuses to acknowledge Vichy France as a government. Daytime Russian forces invade the Baltic States. Evening The Swedish government agrees to allow German troops to pass from Sweden to Norway, via Swedish railways. Evening General de Gaulle broadcasts on BBC radio, appealing to French soldiers to join him and fight on for France. Night RAF bombers attack Bremen and Hamburg.   

       June 19, 1940   

       Time Event Night 30 British Blenheim bombers raid German airfields at Rouen and Amiens. All aircraft return.   

       June 20, 1940   

       Time Event Daytime Italy launches an offensive on the Alpine front in the south of France. Daytime The British Air Ministry sends a directive to Bomber Command, instructing it to focus attacks on German aircraft. Night 47 British Blenheim bombers raid German airfields at Rouen and Schipol. All aircraft return.   

       June 21, 1940   

       Time Event   

       June 22, 1940   

       Time Event Daytime France formally surrenders to Germany.
Zimmy, Nov 04 2005
  

       China is slowly becoming freer and more capitalistic. I imagine China will reform itself to the point where taiwan is a non-issue, and taiwan gladly reconciles with the mainland.   

       China is not an imperialistic culture. One of the major cultural facets of China is the great wall. Think about it. Rather than just wipe the barbarians out, the Chinese chose to build a wall to keep them out.   

       Taiwan is a special case. The Chinese see Taiwan as part of China. History supports this view. The posturing with regards to Taiwan simply will not translate into actions against Tokyo, Ha Noi, et cetera.   

       But there is another facet. China is very wary of foreign imperialism. They DO NOT want the US in their backyard- They don't like the fact we're in Japan, Korea, and Taiwan. They didn't like the fact we were in Vietnam.   

       China is, nowadays, a rational actor. They have a growing economy, and they want to keep it growing. Chinese politicians are afraid of what their people would do if the growth stopped. This is why they want the pyongyang situation handled delicately. Any instability would potentially hurt their growth.   

       If China can be persuaded to see Iran, and the islamofascism in general, as a threat to stability and growth, they will gladly assist the US, which is one of their major trading partners. China does have it's own Islamofascist terrorism problem, so getting them to play ball on Iran, while a delicate matter, is very much so in their own national interests.   

       All in all, I'm very optimistic on China. Perhaps a little too optimistic, but perceptions influence reality, so I believe a positive attitude is good thing to have when it comes to China. It's just important to remember that China has goals the US does not share, and the US has goals China does not share.
Madai, Nov 04 2005
  

       [Zimmy], [Madai], why are you having a political debate? Even if it did belong on the halfbakery it definitely doesn't belong on this idea.
hidden truths, Nov 04 2005
  

       H_T, our debate isn't hurting anyone, is it? Besides, I'm learning stuff. I never knew jack about the Maginot line, and seeing other people's geopolitical attitudes is interesting.
Madai, Nov 04 2005
  

       Let me start this back up. For all of you who say static fortifications have no place in modern mobile warfare. Mainly large barriers or walls. Let me point to the separation barrier being built by the israelis. As of this date there has been a 50% reduction in violence within the wall.   

       Now i agree, that if we were fighting a modern mobile army, walls are largely pointless. Let me also remind you that the US is not fighting a modern mobile army. The insurgents lack staying power, as well as the ability to have prolonged offensive operations.
Antegrity, Nov 08 2005
  

       It's going to get very ugly in the next few years when China starts calling in their investments in US debt.
RayfordSteele, Nov 09 2005
  

       Very ugly indeed. But if it ever got to that point, where war was declared, i think that would make all our financial deals with china null and void. Keep in mind that we are still more powerful than china.
Antegrity, Nov 09 2005
  

       //the insurgents lack staying power// I presume you mean in the sense of 'taking a location and holding it'. By the sound of it, they're operating out of towns that they control in parts of Iraq. Admittedly (to my knowledge) they haven't defeated massed allied troops in pitched battle, but that's not going to be in their game plan at any point. All they have to do is hang on until the satanic westerners have to leave; all the satanic westerners have to do is hope that they can install robust enough institutions that when the insurgents try to take power they won't be able to abolish democracy.   

       More generally, I think almost every conflict in the twentieth century shows that insurgents generally have much greater endurance than occupiers. The only exception I can think of is Tibet. And (maybe, just maybe) northern Ireland.
moomintroll, Nov 09 2005
  

       The idea is not flawed per se... it all depends on how you intend to use the towers. Yes they are heavy, and thereby probably extremely hard to move, so using them as temporary structures probably will not work.   

       But elevated bunkers (what they really are) do have a few advantages, mainly the range of the weapons, as well as a good overview of the surroundings.   

       It may not be practical to put them inside of cities, but you could place them outside cities, every 200 to 500 meters or so as a perimeter defence to control the flow of people and material moving in and out of the city.   

       Another possible use could be border checkpoints. Again, good visibility would work as a plus here..   

       So yeah, the initial design may have its flaws, but I would not dismiss it as a totally rediculous idea.
akumabito, Nov 10 2005
  

       A very tall, very heavy structure must have some way to maintain its uprightness (literally). Deep embedding anchors are required or you can fire off an RPG, three or four at the ground near one of the corners & easily topple it.   

       A large amount of water also might do the same thing.
Zimmy, Nov 11 2005
  

       Tower gets narrower as it goes up. The pyramidal down add extra weight to the top, but the shear mass of the tower is going to prevent it from being knocked over.
Antegrity, Nov 11 2005
  

       Brought down by heavy bombing. Since the US controls the air that wouldnt be a concern.
Antegrity, Jan 13 2006
  

       Congratulations, [Ant], you've just earned yourself a very English fishbone.
moomintroll, Jan 14 2006
  

       //the Maginot Line and the Siegfried Line. They were massive examples of what you propose. Where they were actually attacked they were turned into charnel-houses by attacking soldiers with modern weaponry.//   

       //Germany built such towers in WW2, called Flak Towers, and they were used for air defense. Walls were 2-3 meters thick and still were brought down.//   

       Keep in mind that these defenses were only destroyed by powerful armies with powerful weapons. Iraqi insurgents don't have the means to do so. They won't come rolling in with tanks or knock the towers down with heavy artillery fire. The best they have is mortars and weak, homemade bombs, not the best for sacking a heavily fortified emplacement.   

       Also, these castles might not be the most efficient way of combatting the insurgancy, but I do admit there would be a hell of a psycological effect. There's just something about hundreds of towering monstrosities, filled with the well-armed soldiers, that would probably make me think twice about planting another roadside bomb
MikeOxbig, Jan 14 2006
  

       Yes the whole purpose of these towers would be to act as eyes on the street. They would offer support to convoys moving through the city. Their purpose does not nececitate that they be able to stand alone. Designed well, to survive initial attacks and fight back until gunships or a support force can arrive.   

       You simply cannot force democracy on a people. My problem is that republicans are not evil enough. They simply want the war to drag on so the US can make money selling weapons. Not doing what is needed to stop the war.   

       The solution is simple. Last time I checked the insurgents don't have a mine where they can get the materials needed to make explosives, guns or ammunition. The US knows this but simply does nothing because war is too profitable.
Antegrity, Jan 14 2006
  

       Hey, I'm a republican and I supported your plan.
MikeOxbig, Jan 15 2006
  

       Thankyou for your support. Anyway i think its a load of bullshit that the US is taking crap from these arabs. With the hardware we have, we should be able to put them down in a freakin instant. Thats where my anger comes from. The fact that the gov't is letting this happen. They are doing nothing to stop it. With the troops, armor, planes and ships we have there is no reason as to why troops are dying on a daily basis.
Antegrity, Jan 15 2006
  

       That comfortably wins the Stupidest Comment of the Year - which is pretty good going, for early January.   

       If war was a game of Hardware Top Trumps... well, for a start, the Germans would have won World War 2 before the US had a chance to intervene; the Russians would have won in Afghanistan; and the US would have won in Vietnam. The Romans would never have relinquished their empire. If there's one lesson the last fifty years of warfare have shown, it's that more terrifying than any amount of hardware is a 13-year-old with a Kalashnikov. And consider this: have you won a war if the shooting has finished, but your soldiers can't go into a local bar without being stabbed by the locals? If they're scared that every woman in a burqa (sorry spelling) might try to stab them in the neck? If they're scared to accept food from the locals because they fear it might be poisoned?   

       I don't know why I'm even bothering to try to enlighten you. Possibly because I'm scared you might run for President someday.
moomintroll, Jan 15 2006
  

       Aha, no wait, you got me. Nobody's that stupid. Can't believe I thought you were serious.
moomintroll, Jan 15 2006
  

       Jeez guys, this idea really isn't that bad.
MikeOxbig, Jan 18 2006
  

       You and your tunnels.
MikeOxbig, Jan 18 2006
  

       Hell'stroughers?
Zimmy, Jan 18 2006
  

       If there isnt any heavy equipement available to move the towers into place, the local population would be conscripted to drag the towers into place via ropes and wips. That evil enough for you all?   

       May I also comment on the fact that the main argument against these towers is that the people fighting them will use advance weaponry to bring them down. Bunker busters, wire guided missles. The insurgents in Iraq simply dont have those weapons. They dont have tanks or helicopters. That is beside the point anyway. Lets say these castles were used to secure a city from a country who has modern weaponry. The countries main fighting force would have already been wiped out by the initial invasion. The towers are to control the population, prevent minor attacks and offensives as well as provide protection for convoys.
Antegrity, Jan 18 2006
  

       This thread is among the more disgusting I have read. "lets attack country x" "No, lets attack country y and use economic sanctions against country y" "lets bomb this place" "50 cal..." "...heavy tank" "big guns" "deaths per year"   

       To discuss real deaths of real human beings in these terms is a mockery. The only thing the US should be pushing for is an enforced (by the UN), world-wide peace, coupled with systematic disarmament of every nationalized military including its own. Quality of life, the price of oil, the distribution of resources, and especially who gets elected next are all secondary to this overwelming need. To accomplish this, the UN will have to give equal authority to every country and charge more in dues (which should be collected as a percentage of GNP) Those countries unwilling to pay UN dues don't get a vote. Only the UN should have a military force, and that will be a small one. International observers in every country. Every country not in agreement should be totally economically and socially isolated. And the US should start by destroying every one of its own nukes.
Voice, Jun 13 2007
  

       This idea grows in validity every day as far as im concerned. A durable structure place on every street corner. The structure would house a number of well armed and well protected troops. Designed to survive initial attacks and fight back until help arrives, these towers would be moveable by heavy equipment but once in place be a fixed feature. Mobility is not as important in an urban enviroment as it is the open field. With these towers controling the streets and surrounding buildings our main forces could be put into place controling the border and preventing material support from getting to the insurgents. Remember we are not figthing someone who has artillery or planes.
Antegrity, Jun 13 2007
  

       If the walls are 5' thick, and there's, let's say, 10' of space between the walls, this might make it harder for the street to function as a street.
pertinax, Jun 13 2007
  

       Concrete has a fatal flaw.... when you apply more than 5000 psi to it, it crumbles.
quantum_flux, Jun 13 2007
  

       everything has a weakness, whats your point? The point is to not do anything according to the vast majority of you all.
Antegrity, Jun 14 2007
  

       Well, I'm not used to speaking for a vast majority, but I think our point is not "don't do anything", but just "don't do *this*", for various reasons, not all of which I necessarily agree with.   

       There's a thing in the UK called "The Hacker Fallacy", in honour of fictitious politician James Hacker. It goes like this:
Major Premise: Something must be done.
Minor Premise: This is something.
Conclusion: This must be done.
  

       Does that logic sound familiar?   

       Incidentally, I haven't voted against this yet - I've only asked about the impact on traffic. It may sound trivial, but if you listen to interviews with Palestinian civilians, one of their major day-to-day grievances, (and reasons for sympathizing with terrorists) is that they are prevented from getting to school, getting work, getting to hospital and generally getting on with their lives in a timely manner, as a result of security-generated bottlenecks and traffic jams. Yes, I know, Iraq and Palestine are different places, but the parallel is worth considering. Any thoughts?
pertinax, Jun 14 2007
  

       .... and it is heavy too, a real life castle wouldn't move as far as the scaled down chessboard version does since it would require too much fuel.
quantum_flux, Jun 14 2007
  

       The Berlin Wall had permanence. It simply became a symbol of all that was evil, all that was repressive. So you silence dissent in Iraq by sheer force and invulnerability, like this - if you can. The jihadists simply move on. The World Trade Center wasn't in Baghdad. Crushing all semblance of resistance in Iraq isn't a solution. In this war, opposition numbers are not driven down by how many you kill, but rather go up in proportion to how many families lose their sons.
david_scothern, Jun 14 2007
  

       11 out of 10?
po, Jun 14 2007
  

       <looks round for fire extinguisher>
pertinax, Jun 15 2007
  

       Whats happening in palestine now?
Antegrity, Jun 15 2007
  

       Much the same as usual, sadly. Perhaps I'm missing your point.
pertinax, Jun 15 2007
  

       This thread has come true.
Antegrity, Jun 19 2007
  

       Interesting - link?
pertinax, Jun 19 2007
  

       Didn't see this idea first time around.

As zen_tom points out, the idea of building watch towers and strong points to restrict guerilla fighters is hardly new. Not only was it used in Northern Ireland but also much earlier, and with more success, in South Africa during the Boer war.

The problem with them is that they become targets themselves and you tie down your own modern, mechanised, mobile army to defend immobile strongpoints. In truth though, your mobile watchtower has already been invented and used extensively for the last 65 years (although not in the form you describe, of course). It's called armoured infantry.
DrBob, Jun 19 2007
  

       BUT What about if it were a giant bouncy castle... Then we can settle the whole Iraq thing with a last man bouncing event......
S-note, Jun 19 2007
  

       "This idea grows in validity every day as far as im concerned. A durable structure place on every street corner. " That'l never catch on.   

       [looks out of window, notices that street corners consist of "durable structures"]   

       Wake up, Anty. It's still a combination shit idea/baked idea.
Murdoch, Jun 20 2007
  

       [Murdoch] is right. Some aspects are baked, the rest is magical thinking at best.
loonquawl, Sep 04 2007
  
      
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