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Zoraptor last won the day on August 10 2013

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  1. Trump's letter to Erdogan has been released and it's an 'interesting' read. A beautiful letter, more beautiful even than the ones Kim sends to Trump... Turks have also lost their first confirmed Leopard tank since their invasion started, and it's unlikely anyone who was in it survived. Learnt nothing from their fight with ISIS in Al Bab, about a dozen targets (including rather bizarrely a self propelled artillery piece that ought to be way further back) almost all side on with no infantry screen in sight. If the YPG had a dozen ATGMs instead of one there would have been a dozen destroyed vehicles rather than just one.
  2. Gabbard is broadly speaking right though 'economic strangulation' is a lot more accurate. OTOH Biden managed to claim that US troops had been fired on by Syrian troops while retreating; while they have been fired on both times it was Turkish troops or their proxies doing the shooting. Indeed, you can literally go on Youtube and watch US and Syrian convoys drive past each other without issue. I had a bit of a laugh at Yang saying Bing was useless. I mean, it does allegedly have some uses. Pity he didn't quite name Apple as the crappy navigation app. Volo did already mention Natives and transgender as having the highest suicide rates; " white men tend to have relatively 'high' rates of suicide outside of transgender people or Natives (here in Kanada)". I won't check, but I'd bet pretty much everything I have that suicide rates are higher for native americans in the US and aborigines in Australia as well- but, white males are also above the average as well, just not as much.
  3. Take a look at p2,6,7 of the report I linked, it has the data for here at least. Brief tldr; about 40% less likely to commit suicide for the richest (15% of deaths) over the poorest (25%) quintile with consistent trend; men about half as likely to have sought help as women (20% did 80% didn't for men ~40/60 for women) and overall about 1/3 of suicide victims sought mental health help prior to death. So pretty definite little c correlation between wealth and suicide, and men do not seek help compared to women. Pacific Islanders a decent amount less likely to seek help either, but also less likely to commit suicide (PI are a lot more religious than the general population so would seek help from religion a lot more and also would regard suicide as being a mortal sin being one obvious explanation).
  4. Volo is talking about Kanada rather than the US though. That US stuff does not (necessarily) apply more generally, for example here in NZ the rural population has a lot more guns but near exactly the same suicide rate as the urban population, for all demos collected; indeed, of the tracked methods only deliberate drowning has fewer deaths than via firearms, and those stats don't include open verdict drownings where the question of deliberation is unresolved. Then again, here young Maori are disproportionately likely to commit suicide with whitey only overtaking them in rate in older demos. PDF source, if interested.
  5. How could you leave out Napoleon himself being given permission by Trump to ride to the Kurds' rescue. Biji serok Boney! Allah Souriya Boney w Bas! I'd bet pretty much anything that the "Trump thought Erdogan was bluffing" stuff is rubbish- Erdogan had, after all, already invaded Afrin in Syria and there's no need for a precipitate withdrawal if he thought they were bluffing, only if he was sure they weren't. OTOH the claims about Kurds releasing ISIS prisoners is near enough verbatim what the Turks say; and is directly contradicted by US forces on the ground as well as the Kurds.
  6. Since the situation for Erdogan is existential it's very doubtful any bravado would work to dissuade him, plus the standing orders are also now known to have been to retreat if Turkey invaded. And, there's a rather obvious counter example involving the US and Israel where many US servicemen were outright killed (USS Liberty). It's a land grab, the plan is- and this is overtly stated- to settle refugees there under the aegis of the 'Syrian National Army' (basically Syrian mercenaries allied to Turkey) and the 'Syrian National Council' (half a dozen guys in an Istanbul hotel who are an unofficial government). It's basically Cyprus 1974 redux where you don't in theory have Turkish occupation, you just have the Republic of North Syria that does just about everything and anything Turkey wants- though, the situation in North Cyprus is now bad enough that the deputy President of Turkish North Cyprus has actually condemned (!) Erdogan for invading Syria. Turkey already has a 'safe zone' in Iraq as the KDP is pro Turkish and strongly anti PKK and Turkey has several thousand troops stationed inside Iraq. Indeed, they almost came to blows with Iraqi troops in 2017 after the abortive Kurdish independence referendum when Iraq demanded their withdrawal from one base. NATO intervention would require invoking article 5 which is purely defensive, fighting in Syria during a Turkish invasion thus cannot* trigger an article 5 intervention by other NATO members. You'd need Russia or Syria bombing inside Turkey- extremely unlikely- or Syria invading Turkey which is effectively impossible to get NATO involved. *obviously this can be massaged, a bit, but it's not like Turkey has a surfeit of goodwill to call upon. The attacks on ISIS camps are probably to get as many Kurdish civilians fleeing as possible. That's also why the Turks are using Ahrar al Sharqiya who are basically ISIS lite(ish) to lead the attacks as they are the worst of a generally very bad bunch of Turkish proxies. They can be guaranteed to rape, loot and murder their way across northern Syria. Filming all the while because they're proud of it, which if you want people to run away is of course a positive. They've already filmed at least one decapitation, multiple field executions and riddled a (actually pro Turkish affiliated) female Kurd politician with bullets. Note that in this case Saudi Arabia is actually supporting Syria despite previously being a big rebel supporter, and not just with condemnation as they've extended an offer for Syria to rejoin the Arab League earlier today. Not due to liking Assad who they'd still call a dirty nusayri behind their hands of course, but because Turkey is a non compliant regional power, stopped them invading and annexing Qatar and arabs really don't like neo Ottomanism.
  7. The Syrian Army is definitely moving in and has been for a few hours, it's been acknowledged by everyone now (Turks, SDF/ YPG, their civilian leadership and the government itself). What exactly that means for the future is decidedly murky. It's also unclear whether the US withdrawal is a complete one from Syria entirely or if they're just moving back further back from the border as they did last week since Esper (Trump) and rump DoD are saying different things. Their supply route is basically gone though, unless they get transit via Turkey, so remaining would be difficult. They'll likely stay at the Al Tanf border post in southern Syria though, even if it is kind of pointless without also holding the post at Al Bukamal. Lots of rumours at the moment, including mutually exclusive statements from usually reliable sources. It's unclear whether the Russians are going in too, SAA sources are definitely claiming they're moving in in small numbers (eg 3 vehicles (!) in Manbij- but those were almost certainly already there, under a prior agreement and they would say that Russians were moving in as it would make Turkish attacks less likely). Whether the Turks will actually attack the SAA who knows but their proxies will anyway which is the intrinsic risk of using loon jihadi mercenaries. Reports of a US airstrike on an SAA column (debunked), reports of US troops blocking SAA troops from entering Manbij (unlikely, not enough of them there without SDF backing and they could simply be driven around), Turks are definitely going to attack the Syrian Army, Turks are happy with the SAA deploying...
  8. The intent is to provide posters with a sense of pride and accomplishment for being exposed to different copypasta. As for the forum moderators, we selected members based upon data from our Social Credit Program and other adjustments made to milestone rewards before being sold to Microsoft. Among other things, we're looking at average per-member posting rates on a daily basis, and we'll be making constant adjustments to ensure that posters have copypasta that are compelling, rewarding, and of course understandable and relevant. We appreciate the candid feedback, and the passion the community has put forth around the current topics here on forums.obsidian.net, our facebook and across numerous other social media outlets. Our team will continue to make changes and monitor community feedback and update everyone as soon and as often as we can.
  9. More relevantly to it being 'empty words' they are already 'banned' in China (despite the tencent stake) so there isn't anything for them to lose by annoying Xi Jinpooh. Still, not likely for them to get unbanned in China with that attitude either so there is that.
  10. Lindsey Graham gets prank called by 'Turkish Defence Minister'. Results, unsurprising.
  11. A partial pullout does nothing for them, if it's replaced by a Turkish occupation that will be permanent. A full withdrawal might have benefits that outweigh a Turkish occupation but this is just a swap of one bad option (for them) with one that is almost certainly worse. From their point of view all of the really important areas- the Conoco refinery, Omar oil field, Tabqa Dam or the Al Tanf border crossing- still have US troops occupying them. The other important areas like the biggish cities of Hasaka and Qamishli already have government troops in them. A reconciliation between the PYD and Assad was eminently possible based on events around Afrin and Aleppo- where Kurds maintain an insurgency against the Turks under government and Russian protection and have an Aleppo suburb with its own Kurdish flavour including an independent police force. There was no reconciliation with PYD areas in general because the US threatened to withdraw and let Turkey invade- which has happened anyway, of course- and because some of the arab forces in the SDF sponsored by Saudi won't reconcile. For the Turkish Settlement and Cleansing Buffer that possibility is gone now, and given Turkey's record probably forever.
  12. He's trying to find something, anything with traction to cover a deeply unpopular decision which has managed to unite Saudi Arabia, Iran, Israel, Syria, Republicans, Democrats, Pelosi, McConnell, Graham, Sanders, neocons, neolibs, anti war people, left, right, Europe, Russia and more in opposition; many of whom usually have diametrically opposed views. The general point that the YPG was not primarily helping the US but helping themselves is valid enough- and true, as realpolitik- but advertising your approach as being purely transactional certainly isn't a great idea even if it is (though to be fair to him, about the only thing Trump's been consistent about is viewing everything as transactional). He's probably right about it not being mostly a massive issue with beltway types and not so much with general voters as well. End of the day though, running away so one of your allies can ethnically cleanse a different ally is not the easiest sell in the world for very good reason. If you want some really absolutely bonkers logic though, here's the Turkish Defence Minister's statement on Operation Ludicrous Propaganda Name which reads like an attempt at parodying what a Minipax press release would be. https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EGeIxz2WoAEICKz.jpg:large Unfortunately, there are no mountains in northern Syria as they clearly didn't expect to be betrayed this time. They let the US escort Turkish troops around the border and demolish their border fortifications, and had an antagonistic attitude to the Syrian government (largely mandated by the US, but really, that makes it worse so far as the government is concerned) which if backed by Russia was the only other group that could have stopped Turkey. PYD is philosophically/ theoretically the closest group to me in Syria by absolute miles, but their conduct has been so naive as to be indistinguishable from stupid and they've massively overestimated their own leverage, and after Afrin that also needs an 'again' at the end.
  13. Ryzen/ Navi with hardware raytracing also confirmed since it isn't mentioned in that article, and the dev boxes actually are the same as those leaked previously which were discussed a bit here. Don't think they've mentioned whether they will be using GDDR6 or the new cheap HBM RAM, or some sort of hybrid solution.
  14. It isn't really 'kneejerk' per se, Trump has tried to withdraw troops multiple times before. It's an extremely 'bad' decision for multiple reasons, but it's not really sudden or unexpected and may well be the best decision available, at least for the US. While the announcement was peremptory it had clearly been planned for a while as transportation started arriving days earlier*. If the Turks were set on invading with or without US approval- which they probably were since Erdogan desperately needs to solve some internal problems- the choice was literally fighting the Turks, not fighting but withdrawing during actual fighting or withdrawing before the fighting broke out. One of those is an obvious better (or at least way safer) option than the others. I can't see any US President in living memory making an ultimately different decision so long as they were convinced the attack was definitely coming. *It's clearly not popular with most of the military though, as they ran an arms convoy through from Iraq, tonight- with the Turks attacking that border crossing as soon as they heard of it Serious posting? A man of your talents? (of course the Turks were worse than doing nothing, they allowed supply and new recruits through their territory to ISIS, and provided much of their external funding via buying their oil)
  15. The launcher is definitely present in the GOG version anyway. As with most of the older Beth games you can launch the exe directly if you want to, but the default for the GOG version is still being started via its launcher.
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