The Instigator
GodFate
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
TUF
Con (against)
Winning
26 Points

The United States is justified in using private military firms abroad to pursue its military objecti

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/5/2011 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,029 times Debate No: 15813
Debate Rounds (3)
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Votes (4)

 

GodFate

Pro

The resolution (topic) is: Resolved: The United States is justified in using private military firms abroad to pursue its military objectives.

Before I begin I would like to tell my opponent that my case is structured in a Lincoln-Douglas debate format; basically, I have a value and value criterion, and my case ties in with my value. As the resolution, or topic, is a National Forensic League LD resolution, I would prefer to debate in the Lincoln Douglas format. If my opponent requests not to debate in the LD format, I will simply omit my value and value criterion from the debate (act like it isn't there). Also, if my opponent agrees to debate in LD format, the cross-examination rounds will be omitted. Thank you.

First I will lay out some definitions:
Definitions:

United States: North American republic containing 50 states.
Dictionary.com

Justified: to defend or uphold as warranted or well-grounded.
Dictionary.com

Use: to employ for some purpose; put into service; make use of.
Dictionary.com

Private Military Firms: Legally established international firms offering services that involve the potential to exercise force in a systematic way and by military or paramilitary means, as well as the enhancement, the transfer, the facilitation, the deterrence, or the defusing of this potential, or the knowledge required to implement it, to clients.
Privatemilitary.org

Military Objectives: A military objective is a clearly defined desired result in a given campaign, major operation, battle, or engagement set by the senior command for their formations and units to achieve. Military objectives can be set within a three-tier scale of combat structure of tactical, operational and strategic management of the conflict, and the conduct of its combat operations process.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Objective_(military)
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Value: My value for this debate is Justice.
Justice means giving each person his or her due, and is the equal legal liberty for all. It is the highest of all rights a person can have, and makes everybody happy because it is a fair and moral right.

Criterion: My value criterion is Constitutionalism.
The constitution of the United States is very relevant to this debate as the US is stated in the resolution, and the constitution is the law of the land. Therefore, if the affirmative can prove that private military firms are constitutional, the United States is justified in using private military firms, and the affirmative should win the debate. This leads me to my first contention.

Contention 1: The United States' use of private military firms is constitutional, and so it is warranted. In Article I, Section 8, paragraph 11 of the U.S. Constitution authorizes Congress to "grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal," which, according to progress.org, basically means to authorize a private person, not in the US armed forces, to conduct reprisal operations outside the borders of the US. (Reprisal means an action taken in return for some injury. A reprisal could be a seizing of property or guilty persons in retaliation for an attack and injury. It could include forced used against the perpetrators for the redress of grievances. A reprisal could even involve killing a terrorist who is threatening further harm and cannot be captured.) Because the US's use of private military firms is constitutional, it agrees with my value, justice.

Contention 2:
Sub Point A: Although the general public believes that private military corporations are unregulated companies that employ mercenaries, "Reconsidering Battlefield Contractors," an article from an edition of Georgetown Journal of International Affairs, proves otherwise. The article describes how the private sector has a long history with supporting US military operations and objectives. Private military companies do not employ mercenaries who run around killing civilians, either; rather, private military firms come in three main varieties: Nonlethal Service Providers (NSPs), Private Security Companies (PSCs), and Private Military Companies (PMCs). NSP's provide air and ground transport, building military and refugee camps, and other small services such as water purification. PSC's provide protection for people and places, such as politicians and important buildings. And PMC's provide police and military training, as well as other small services.

Sub Point B: Private military firms are also very beneficial to conflicts. According to the foreign policy research institute, (http://www.fpri.org...) private military firms are able to rapidly deploy personnel, equipment, and munitions, known as "surge" capacity. Without the time needed for political or bureaucratic lead to mobilize military forces, PSC's (and private military firms as a whole) can quickly accomplish a variety of tasks. And just as fast as they can appear, they can disappear. Also, according to "Reconsidering Battlefield Contractors," private military firms are cost efficient – meaning they are cheaper than using military aid. Because private military firms are so useful, have a long history with the US military and cause no harm, the US's use of them is justified and constitutional.

In conclusion, because of these contentions and sub points, I have laid out, the United States is justified in using private military firms abroad to pursue military objectives. I urge an affirmative vote.
TUF

Con

First off, I would like to thank my opponent for offering up a familiar debate system, and wish him good luck with our following rounds.

To start, I will be presenting my case and then going over my opponents as is traditional of an LD structured type of debate.

I agree with my opponents definitions, however I would like to re-define justice, as: To show to be just, right, or reasonable, from the 1995 version of the Merriam Webster's dictionary.
More complex versions of the definition can be found through the new one.
http://www.merriam-webster.com...

This definition implies that there is a certain set morality offered to the round that must be looked at when evaluating the debate. Given that morality is subjective, to different societies, we will use the United States set of moralities, as it prescribes to the resolution through the use of the phrase "the United States is Justified...".

Now I hope the opponent and the audience don't view this as semantics, and recognize that LD debate relies very heavily on definitions offered in the resolution.

Given that in my opponents value, he mentions the term "moral right", we have to assume that he agrees that morality is a factor to be upheld.
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My value for the round will be justice, as is almost mandated through the use of the word "justified" in the resolution.
Given that me and my opponent both value Justice, the winner of this debate should be determined by whoever can best uphold justice in the round. Justice in terms of who best upholds it in terms of the united states values.

My Criterion will be the implementation of proper Counter-insurgency tactics.
A counter-insurgency or counterinsurgency involves actions taken by the recognized government of a nation to contain or quell an insurgency taken up against it. In the main, the insurgents seek to destroy or erase the political authority of the defending authorities in a population they seek to control, and the counter-insurgent forces seek to protect that authority and reduce or eliminate the supplanting authority of the insurgents.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

Insurgent: One who rises in revolt against constituted authority; a rebel who is not recognized as a belligerent.
From the Oxford English Dictionary

Contention 1: PMF's undermine counter-insurgency efforts.

http://www.brookings.edu...

In order for a counter-insurgency to work, the help of the local government is strongly needed in order to complete military objectives. Let's use Afghanistan as an example.

16 Private Military Firms sent to Iraq have been accused of committing crimes in Afghanistan.

"An Afghan government probe of private security companies has accused 16 firms of violations that include employing too many guards, failing to pay taxes for up to two years, and keeping unregistered weapons and armored vehicles. "

http://www.rawa.org...

Without the help of a local populace, and government, we simply cannot achieve our military goals effectively. A counter-insurgency is the death knell for winning a war. While the US government may not be perfect angels, they are still approved by the populace and government. With outside military operators inside their own country, an illusion of being overwhelmed and taken over, destroys any counter-insurgency efforts. Add in the abuses to the government above, and we have a wrecked insurgency effort.
Not only that, but when we have para-military forces taking jobs in countries where, un-employment is high, resentment builds.

For more information please look here: http://www.brookings.edu...

Contention 2: Private Military Firms are economically unbeneficial.

http://www.brookings.edu...

In the article above, P.W.Singer explains explains costs and spending by Private Military Firms in the United States. As is well known, all American Private military Firms are funded by the federal government.

The article above shows that roughly 10-11 billion dollars provided to PMF's by the federal government has been un-accounted for. So while these Military Firms may be "effective" with efficient training and supplies, what is the rest of this money being used for?

The federal government is in charge of funding a great number of other programs as well including: Agriculture, U.S. Education, Retirement, etc.

A full list can be found here: http://www.usa.gov...

Point being that we are over-paying Private Firms to do essentially the same exact thing that our government issued military can given the same funding, however, the government military (not being a business) would be far more economical, due to the fact that select operations, trainings, and resources, must be given directly through the source of the money. That's 11 billion dollars we can save, or put into other important agencies. I'm not arguing that PMF's are un-effective, but that they are un-neccesary, and drain the U.S. economy.

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I will now move on to my opponents case.

We cannot look to my opponent contention one as substantial proof that the use of Private Military Firms are justified. Just because something in the constitution says we can, doesn't mean we should. There has been a great many amendments to the constitution, because of known flaws found inside of it. We can think of a resolution as an attempt to make an amendment to a rule, which is the premise reason of our debate.
Something already being a law, should not hold weight as being an argument to keep this law. So really is my opponent making an argument to protect military firms, or is he just saying we should use them because the law says we can? The purpose of this debate is to question whether the law should be held or dropped in terms of how "just" (in this situation) it really is. Thus my opponent makes no argument for his contention one.

Going on to his contention 2 sub point A. My opponent talks about how some of the employments that PMF's are actively involved in that support operations. Again I directly combat this with my contention one. Private Military Firms can do essentially nothing that our own government cannot do given the proper funding and resources.
Next, in his sub point B, my opponent talks of the benefits PMF's actually bring. As I said in my opening case, I do not question that the PMC's have benefits. However they are mutually un-beneficial in supporting the united states objectives in terms of counter-insurgency.
And finally my opponent make an un-founded claim that military firms are cheaper? I would like to the audience to please drop this claim as it is un-supported and un-backed with any source thus making it an irrelevant statement.

To conclude I urge the voters to vote Con because really, all the PMC's do, is essentially the same thing our own military could do. Our military could economically use the funding better, and even up pay rates, while still saving the federal government money. Also we have the local government on our side, which is strongly needed in the war, in order to maintain counter-insurgency tactics.
My opponents opening contentions provided no substances of evaluation for the remainder of the debate, as they lacked evidence, proper argumentation, and support.
I urge a con vote due to the fact that I have offered plenty of articles to back all of my claims, and have properly shown the economic effect a Privatized War have on our country, as well as I have shown the importance of the tactics the need of the local government and populace provide to our military objectives.

Thankyou.
Debate Round No. 1
GodFate

Pro

GodFate forfeited this round.
TUF

Con

Extend all arguments. Vote Con.
Debate Round No. 2
GodFate

Pro

GodFate forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
No comments have been posted on this debate.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by Zarroette 2 years ago
Zarroette
GodFateTUFTied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: ff
Vote Placed by boredinclass 5 years ago
boredinclass
GodFateTUFTied
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: fail
Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 5 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
GodFateTUFTied
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: The United States is justified in using private military firms abroad to pursue GodFate - Forfeit.
Vote Placed by darkkermit 5 years ago
darkkermit
GodFateTUFTied
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: win via forfeit