The Instigator
thett3
Pro (for)
Losing
25 Points
The Contender
BlackVoid
Con (against)
Winning
26 Points

The United States should conquer Africa

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 13 votes the winner is...
BlackVoid
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/23/2011 Category: Society
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 6,470 times Debate No: 19957
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (51)
Votes (13)

 

thett3

Pro

Blackvoid and I agreed to have this debate over Christmas break. I understand that he's currently busy, but I figured it better to send the challenge sooner rather than later, to better answer any questions. Specifications on the exact meaning of "conquer" and "Africa" will be elaborated on in the next round (don't worry, I'm not going to pull any semantic tricks.)

Debaters are permitted to make a seperate debate to place their citations in, to save characters.

And no, this is NOT my actual position, I am engaging in Devils Advocacy.

I eagerly await your acceptance, Blackvoid.
BlackVoid

Con

I accept this epic debate. I get the feeling that this is going to be super intense. Good luck.

Debate Round No. 1
thett3

Pro

Thesis:

When colonialism was at its peak, the traditional lifestyle of Africans was shaken to its core by vast European contact. Europe’s goal of “civilizing” (IE Westernizing) the Africans was partially completed, before it was abandoned entirely following the post WWII wave of white guilt. Since then, Africa has become a continent of despair, the confusing clash of cultures leading to genocides, economic depression, corruption, and war. Africa is not returning to its traditional heritage, it is just making a false and dangerous imitation of the West; any western involvement is advantageous at this point.

Specifications

The age of imperialism, in a traditional sense, is over. No longer do nations openly engage in petty squabbles over territory or resources; indeed in the age of inter-dependence such open wars are pragmatically impossible! The resolution however, is clearly referring to the present tense. This leads us to an impasse: if colonialism is a thing of the past, then how do we go about conquering anything? The answer lies in current U.S. policy. Chalmers Johnson argues[1] that the United States version of a colony is a military base. This seems problematic, in that it is too broad, surely no one believes the U.K. or Germany or Cuba to be U.S. colonies, despite all of these nations containing U.S. bases. What then, is meant by conquering? The closest thing seems to be the “nation building” mission advocated by the Bush & Obama administrations. Indeed, despite claiming to be a nation promoting democracy, the U.S. has overthrown democratic regimes to achieve its objectives, and propped up autocratic ones [2][3]. Imperialism in today’s world is much more sinister than that of the past, while the U.S. might not have made Iraq an official “colony”, it certainly benefitted from the nations resources after the war [4], and certainly brought the nation under its wing. Using the information above, we can best conclude that current U.S. policy indicates conquest to be a military intervention intended to preserve U.S. hegemony abroad. That is what we will consider to be “conquering” in this round.
Further, to bring Africa under its hegemony the U.S. need not conquer ALL of it, just enough. The U.S. did not have to conquer all of the Middle East to bring it under it's hegemony, just Afghanistan and Iraq. The same principle should be applied to Africa.
Also, I offer the observation that all effective governments are inherently expansionist because they are obligated to act in the best interests of their citizens, even if that comes at the expense of the citizens of other nations. If conquest is helpful to both the citzens of the conquerer, and the conquered (as a U.S. conquest of Africa would be) than there is simply no reason NOT to do so.

C1: Human rights

There are at least 2 major genocides occurring currently in Africa[5][6]. Around half of the African continent is currently submerged in warfare of some kind [7]. Every single day 2500 innocent children die because of a lack of clean drinking water, and hundreds more die of starvation[8]. Of the 50 least developed countries, 34 of them are in Africa[9]. I could go further, but I think these empirics, combined with the common knowledge we all have, show how the continent of Africa is in a desperate situation. Let us now compare the situation of Africa to the situation of the two third world countries the U.S. has most recently invaded ad rebuilt, Afghanistan and Iraq. Afghanistan was previously in a state of civil war (which was swiftly ended by U.S. involvement) and since the U.S. invasion the nation has improved greatly, the GDP has risen massively[10] and there now exists gender equality and a democratic government. Iraq can tell a similar story, GDP has increased here as well, as have all Human Rights [11]. Thus you can see that U.S. involvement has been successful in the past, so bringing Africa under our hegemony will be advantageous to those living there.

Human Cost

The entire war on terror has cost an estimated ~1-1.5 million lives [12]. Both Iraq and Afghanistan had (comparatively) modern militaries, insurgents, and suicide bombers with no qualms about murdering civilians. Africa as a rule has none of these things, so the death projections can be much lighter. Consider also that over 10 million innocent children die every year by starvation [13] many of these in Africa. Clearly the military casualties are outweighed. Further, there is no viable alternative to conquest, we can see quite clearly that foreign aid and charity do not work other-wise Africa would not be suffering as much.

C2: Hegemony

Short and sweet. Africa is a pretty strategic location, allowing for power projection into the Middle East and Asia, both potential hot spots. U.S. hegemony deters nuclear war.

C3: Resource exploitation

For such a poor continent, Africa actually has a lot of resources. Take for example the Congo, one of the poorest nations in Africa. This country has an estimated 24 TRILLION USD worth of untapped resources, and enough river to provide hydroelectric power to the entire continent[14]. As it stands, these treasures are just going to waste; stuck in a country that will not stop fighting itself long enough to develop them. As I previously mentioned, the U.S. benefitted from Iraqs resources (oil) once it brought the nation under its hegemony. Same thing will logically happen with Africa. Further, the benefit is two-fold the trade and economic ties with the World’s sole superpower will be advantageous for the Africans as well (they would certainly be better off engaging in trade with the U.S. than killing each other over minor ethnic differences).

C4: Historical precedent and current events

Previous interventions in Africa have been successful. As recently as 2011 western intervention in Africa has converted a dictatorship to a democracy[15]. Looking at the most developed nation in Africa (South Africa), it is also the most westernized. Indeed, until the 90’s the only people allowed to run the country were westerners[16]! This is not to imply that Western society is superior to African culture, it merely supposes that Western society is preferable to the confusing (and violent) clash of cultures that is ongoing in Africa currently, and there is no reason to believe that most Africans will return to their traditional, nomadic, and primitive (although extremely sustainable) way of life. Those skills have been forgotten.

WWII marks a turning point in history, the end of traditional colonialism. By the 1960’s, the colonies were almost all gone, and despite booming in the 1950’s (last decade of western involvement), the economies of Africa have crashed and never recovered since the West departed [17]. Consider the following image: http://www.debate.org... you can see that those Nations that are closest geographically to Europe also have generally higher GDP’s, with the exception of the westernized South Africa and the nations in close proximity to it. This tells us what we all know, that closer ties with the nations in power (IE the U.S. and its NATO allies) leads to economic success. If you're considered an ally, puppet state, colony, or economic interest to the United States it will use its massive military and economic power to help you, not harm you. Currently, no nation in Africa is considered any of these things to the United States (with the exception of a few oil producers, and look at how the U.S. aided them in their time of need [Libya]). Consequently, if any threat is perceived by the U.S., they will not hesitate to destroy the nation in question. It is better for Africa to align itself with the U.S. as soon as possible.

Africa is now a depressed continent of starvation, infant mortality, warfare, genocide, and squander. These are the results of the departure of western society.

Sources:

1. http://www.debate.org...

BlackVoid

Con

Pro's Specifications

When we think of the word conquer, our first thought is an all-out invasion of land whereby we forcibly take ownership away from the other country. Webster's defines Conquer as " to gain or acquire by force of arms" (1). In other words, we are taking Africa by force.

I knew Pro wouldnt actually advocate invasion, but what he's advocating for isn't anywhere near what the resolution implies. Pro isn't "conquering" Africa, he's advocating a humanitarian peace mission. His plan is this: we go and help Africa solve their genocide problems, and they pay us by letting us mine their mineral resources. This doesn't sound like conquering.

Pro also uses the examples of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya as examples where "intervention" succeeded, which implies that this type of model is what he advocates. This proves my point even more. You could not find anyone on this site that thinks that we "conquered" Iraq. We never even sent ground troops to Libya. We helped them kill Gaddafi, and got out. This is not a model for "conquering" a country.

So straight off, Pro isn't meeting the BoP because his interpretation of this topic is completely different from what anyone would considering it being. Humanitarian support =/= conquering a continent.


Case:

My own arguments will be made in addressing his.


C1. Human rights

1. Pro never explains why the US specifically should be the country to try and stop the African genocides. Why shouldn't we have the EU come in and intervene? How about the UN? There's a lot of nations and international organizations in the world, but its not explained why the US specifically should be the one doing this. Until then, I can just name any major power in the world and say that can do it instead.

2. There's no reason the US has to risk thousands of more soldiers abroad when we can just hire a military contracting company to intervene instead. Private contractors have already solved genocide in Sierra Leone (2) and Bosnia (3) by themselves. Since most contractors are foreigners, we don't send our troops away from home (again) but still solve the problem. And again, this doesn't require us to conquer the continent.

3. If solving starvation and civil war is our obligation, our military would be spread out all over the world. There are a least 15 countries outside of Africa with a starvation problem (4). If Pro is right, we should send our military in all of these places too, as well as the tens of other countries in civil war. This would spread our military so thin we wouldn't be effective in any of these places.


4. Pro brings up Iraq and Afghanistan as examples where military intervention has been "successful". However, he only spends two sentences explaining this, when those 2 wars are among the most controversial topics of this decade. So straight up, don't buy this.

But I'd argue that these were bad anyway. Iraq has had over 100,000 civilian deaths since our occupation (5) and Afghanistan's growth has been minuscule; their quality of life is ranked 155th in the world (6). Foreign policy theorist William Layne even said that "the US is bad at counter-insurgency" (7). So any intervention we take in Africa would likely just exacerbate their problems, adding fuel to the fire.

5. The US tried to solve rights abuses in Iraq. But the second we finally withdrew, violence has skyrocketed and Iraq is back to blowing themselves up again (8). Like Iraq, Africa has known nothing but authoritarianism and poor living conditions for most of its life. If we do conquer it, were the US to ever remove its troops, Africa would revert to the way it was before, just like Iraq. So to truly solve human rights abuses, we would have to be there forever. This not only keeps most of our military force away from family, but also incurs an economic expense beyond what we can even hope to afford.



Human Cost

I agree that Africa doesn't have the technological sophistication Iraq and Afghanistan does. However, those are just two countries we were warring in. There are 47 countries in Africa. My opponent himself said that half the continent is in warfare, so thats 23 wars we'd be dealing with. As for the other 24, I don't think the nations in peace would take kindly to "military intervention" so expect even more fights. Even if we're not conquering the whole continent, thats still several countries we're invading. Casualties will be just as high as the WoT.


C2: Hegemony

1. Taking over Africa would be the boldest act of Imperialism ever witnessed in this world. Even if we were just there to "intervene", the world wouldnt see it this way. Other nations would see us as trying to control parts of the world. Furthermore, as my opponent says, the US would become dangerously powerful as we would be annexing an entire continent. When the world sees us gaining power and using it to take over other countries, this will cause other nations to become nervous and attempt to increase their own power. Several new nations will start building nuclear weapons in order to compete with US's power. Hastening nuclear proliferation greatly increases the probability of a nuclear war; there's always a chance a terrorist cell acquires nukes or that an accidental launch occurs. Pro creates a world where many more states want nukes, thus making nuclear war a much stronger possibility. The magnitude of this outweighs everything my opponent has brought up.


2. Conquering Africa would create a new wave of terrorism the likes of which we'd never seen before. Osama bin Laden sent a letter to the US that literally said Al Qaeda is attacking us because we are occupying middle-eastern countries (9). Conquering Africa will do the exact same thing, this time on a continental scale. This will not only create African sects of terrorists, but will fuel the resolve of Al Qaeda and other anti-american groups to continue their assault.


C3: Resources

1. Pro references the Congo as having a lot of tapped mineral resources that we could mine. However, the UN Environment Program finds that "Large-scale mining generally produces large volumes of waste and chemical pollutants which may cover vast tracts of land, and can have devastating impacts on the ecosystem" (10). Mining in Africa has the same problems right now. From (10), 100% of African countries are experiencing air pollution from mining activities, 98% are experiencing water pollution, and 13% suffer from acid mine drainage. The US joining in this resource charade will only exacerbate the environmental concerns and cause more people to suffer or die from these effects. This outweighs any monetary benefit.


2. Pro says Africa would benefit from trade with the US. Except the US and Africa are already active traders (11). In fact, the US trades with a lot of countries that we don't have military bases in. We don't have to conquer a country to trade with them.


C4: Historical precedent

1. Even under the most lax definition, the intervention in Libya, where we were only there for a few weeks, doesn't set a model for "conquering" a country.


2. The rest of pro's argument shows benefits that would come from "westernizing" Africa. Here is where the biggest flaw with his case is. Westernizing a country involves turning their government to a democracy, and ensuring there is regular access to food, water, and electricity (12). What Pro's asking for here is immeasurable. 45 of Africa's countries are third-world (13), meaning thats how many governments we'd have to overthrow, how many democracies we'd have to create, and how many countries we have to provide a sustainable living environment in. This is impossible. We would have to deploy our entire military to achieve even half of this. Even if we only had to westernize 10 countries, we don't have the manpower. Conquering and democratizing a continent that has known nothing but authoritarianism for most of its existence is far beyond what the one country is able to do.


I eagerly await Thett's response.


http://tinyurl.com...


Debate Round No. 2
thett3

Pro

Thanks Blackvoid!!

Analysis:

My Opponent has chosen the path of just responding to my arguments, instead of presenting his own. That's fine, after all I am the one advocating a change in the status quo. This does however, give me a distinct advantage: if any part of my argument survives his objections, then you vote Pro by default.

Extend: Extend that governments are inherently expansionist, he hasn't questioned the logic. This is a serious blow for Con, because it justifies expansion even if said expansion comes at a cost to the natives. This lessens my BOP, because now I only have to show a benefit to the U.S. that comes with conquest.

Specifications

Con spends an entire paragraph arguing that my version of "conquest" would mean only a peacekeeping mission. Not exactly. Yes, we would be taking Africa by force (just as we took Afghanistan and Iraq by force). He further talks a lot about how the Libyan intervention was not conquest; I want to make this very clear: I agree. I never argued that Libya was conquered by the U.S., I argued that it shows a precedent of beneficial interventions. Conquest is a form of intervention! Cons argument thus is a red herring. He asserts that Iraq was not a "conquest". This is illogical. Iraq is a U.S. puppet state that had continued U.S. military occupation for 8 years (thats twice as long as it took to fight the second world war). If that is not conquest than I dont know what is.

Con procedes to go on about how saving innocent Africans from genocide and then taking their un-used resources is not conquest, but if it was done by military force (which seems to be the only way) than under my definition, and his it still counts as conquest! Con seems to presume without justification that conquest is always a bad thing for the natives and anything else is a humanitarian mission. Dont buy this without justification, using his logic the WOT is a "humanitarian mission".

Now I will respond to his formidable objections.

Human rights

1. The U.S. should conquer Africa because there is no alternative country to do so. The U.S. is the worlds hegemon and its military spending is greater than the next 17 countries combined[1]. His alternatives (the EU and UN) cannot work. The EU is a bickering collection of independent states, and the UN is little more than a debating society that accomplishes very little. So the U.S. specifically should do this because it has the best chance of success, and conquest is advantageous.

2. His private contracters plan is fallacious for 2 reasons. 1. It doesnt gain the net benefits my case does and 2. it does not actually support his side, because if the U.S.. hires mercenaries to conquer Africa for them than they are still conquering Africa. Hell, offer that up as an alternate plan of conquest: The U.S. uses some of its massive economic power to hire mercenaries to conquer Africa for them and only sends in its own troops when the worst of the fighting is over.

3. Red herring. My position was never that we had an obligation to solve CW/starvation, my position was that if we can do so while benefitting ourselves, we should.

4. I will address his objections seperately

Iraq: 100000 casualties over 8 years is miniscule compared to Iraq's population of 32 million[2]. Thats a per capita casualty rate of 3.9 per 10,000 annually. To put it in perspective, per capita around 10x more people in Iraq die of car crashes[3] yearly.

Afghanistan: Turn: Cons source shows the HDI of Afghanistan to be INCREASING since 2005 (the first year data was taken)[4]. His quote from Layne is just that--a quote. No empirics given, or even justification. Besides why should we assume Africa would even have insurgents?

5. Turn: If violence in Iraq increased after the U.S. withdrew, than that shows long term colonization to be preferable to small scale intervention. This is significant because the U.S. will continue to intervene in other countries; after all every single president in the post-war era has intervened one way or another[5].

Human cost

23 small scale, African wars would be easy for the U.S. to solve. After all, the majority of militants in Africa use bolt-action WWI rifles or left overs from the African campaign of WWII. Once the tanks rolled in, they wouldn't stand a chance. African citizens for the most part have spent their whole (short) lives under the power of different struggling warlords, so there is no reason that they wouldnt "take kindly" to humanitarian support and conquest by the U.S.

Heg

1. There is no reason to believe that nations will build Nuclear weapons to deter the U.S., and certsinly no nation the U.S. could not stop. Consider that of the most powerful nations,all are either firmly allied w/ th U.S. (NATO) or economically dependent on the U.S. (China & India). Other nations already do see the U.S. as trying to take over other countries and rule the world, mostly because the U.S. does take over other countries, and essentially does rule the world (or tries to). His disadvantage (DA) is non-unique.

2. Africa spent half a century under European rule with very little terrorism. History tells us that Con is incorrect. Besides, a more plausible explnation for terrorism would be the U.S. exploiting middle eastern countries, which we do to Africa anyway. Non-unique DA.

Resources

1. Turn: You dont hear about these evironmental impacts within U.S., because the U.S. is responsible with its resources. If Africa was under U.S. control, than the U.S. would likely be responsible there as well (it certainly would have an incentive to). Besides, Cons environmental DA is the least of problems that Africa suffers, infant mortality, starvation and genocide are much more significant, and increasing economic activity will help to solve all three.

2. Obviously if Africa had more resources to export, than trade would increase. My advantage stands, his objection does not.

Extend: You can extend the monetary advantage the U.S. would reap (which is enough to affirm the resolution) and you can extend that this would economically help Africans as well. I know there arent any studies on the subject, but it's logical to assume that an unemployed and economically depressed African citizen would take a job at the expense of having to breath dusty air.

History

1. Red herring- Intevention in Libya shows that western intervention is successful, and conquest is a kind of intervention. Not all interventions are conquest.

2. I see no reason to believe that conquering Africa means forming democracies. Con must justify this claim. Recall that in my specifications I claimed that the U.S. has in the past over-thrown demoracies to meet its military objectives (a fact he has not disputed) and propped up autocracies. When I refer to "westernizing" it means promoting western culture, which is not inherently democratic (multiple Western countries were autocratic until after WWI, and Germany/Italy were under autocratic rule until 1945 after a failed democratic experiment), and installing pro-western governments (similar to what we've done in Iraq and Afghanistan). Con asserts that we dont have the man power to westernize Africa, but he doesnt explain why. He's saying that the U.S. does not have the ability to defeat (individually mind you, they are unlikely to ally with eachother) hugely outnumbered militaries using WWII weapons with soldiers pressed into service (compared w/ the U.S. all volunteer force) many of whom would rather be under the stars and stripes than their corrupt governments anyway. How absurd.

You can extend my entire analysis of how Africa suffered economic collapse when the west departed. He has not touched it.

I greatly anticipate my opponents reply, and urge readers to vote pro.

Sources:

http://www.debate.org...
BlackVoid

Con

Epic debate so far.

Pro's analysis

I guess Pro missed my sentence where I said that I'm making my own arguments by attacking his. I argued that conquering Africa would lead to nuclear proliferation, terrorism, environmental damage, and economic harms. So I have made offensive arguments; Pro not only needs to prove his case but explain how it outweighs my disadvantages.

Expansionism

I didnt disagree that governments are expansionist, I see no problem with that. But the impact he tries to get here is ridiculous. He tries to say that this means as long as conquering Africa benefits the US, its ok, it doesn't matter what happens to Africa. This is like saying that if affirming will save 1000 Americans, but kill a million Africans, thats ok. Thats obviously insane.


Specification

Pro's clarified that he supports long-term military occupation and a nation building plan. I now agree that his definition of conquering is acceptable. Now we can just focus on the arguments.


C1: Human rights.

1. Pro asserts with no evidence that the UN and EU can't solve Africa's genocides instead. He says the UN is just a debating society and doesn't accomplish anything, which is strange because my source lists 22 peacekeeping operations they've taken in Africa before (1). The EU also has 8 operations currently going on (2), showing that they're not just a "bickering collection of states". So extend my alternatives - There's no reason for one country to spend all the money on this, when instead we could fund this through an international effort. Prefer my sourced arguments to my opponent's blank assertions.

2. Pro says using military contractors to solve Africa's genocides doesn't gain the net benefits of his case. Thats all he says; he never explains why. He also says that if we use contractors, we're still conquering the country. Actually no, since conquering requires long-term military occupation, and contractors are on a...contract, with an expiration date. So extend - my alternative to solving genocide is better because it doesn't force more US soldiers away from home. He never addressed that logic.

3. Group this with my environmental, nuclear prolif, and terrorism disadvantages. He says we should solve their wars if it benefits both parties, except those DAs show you that we don't.

4. He drops my argument that he cannot justify the Iraq and Afghanistan wars in 2 sentences. He has no offense here. But I'll address his rebuttal anyway.

Iraq - Pro says that 100,000 civilian deaths from the Iraq war is "minuscule". I don't even know what to say to this. It doesn't matter if thats a small % of the population, thats still 100,000 people killed because of the US's intervention showing that thousands will die in an Africa invasion as well.

Afghanistan - Yes, since the US's 10-year occupation, Afghanistan's living conditions have improved 0.042 units. Thats terrible. This shows that US interventions aren't reliable; he can't guarantee success in improving Africa's stability.

5. Pro agrees that we have to be in Africa long-term in order to prevent them from going back to civil war. He never addresses my arguments here that this is not only completely unaffordable, but also that it permanently separates our military force from their families, because they're stuck fighting people in Africa rather than being home.

Human Cost:

23 wars will not be "easy for the U.S. to solve".

Pro again asserts without evidence that Africa's militants use old WW2 rifles. Actually, my source indicates that Africa's arms trade produces 200,000 guns a year "of a quality comparable with industrially produced guns” (3). Again, prefer my source to the blank assertion. My source also references militants having grenade launchers and anti-aircraft missiles. The US is not going to roll over this; casualties will be massive. They will not roll over and give up because we're offering to "help" them, war is all they know.

But in any case, it should be obvious that the US can neither afford nor win 23 wars.


C2: Hegemony

1. The world does not already see the US as taking over the world when we have only occupied 2 other countries in this decade (Iraq, Afg.). He gives no proof that the world sees the US as a threat to them. In contrast to Iraq and Afghanistan, conquering Africa is a take over of twenty-three countries. This is essentially 1/5 of the world. This WILL make every other country nervous, encouraging them to build nuclear weapons to deter the US from invading them as well. He completely dropped the analysis that nuclear proliferation leads to high probability of nuke war, extend this as the biggest impact in the round.

2. Yes, Europe didn't deal with much terrorism when they colonized Africa. That was in the 1800's. Terrorism today is much more common and potent. And Pro is right, we've also caused terrorism by exploiting the middle east and Africa in the present time (though he again gives no evidence). That doesn't mean invading the whole dang continent won't make the problem worse. So extend that his plan of conquering a continent will manifest even more US terrorism than exists today, and also the dropped analysis that it would strengthen the resolve of Al Qaeda.


C3. Resources

1. Pro claims that the US doesn't cause environmental damage when mining for minerals, again with no evidence. In contrast, my source shows that mining in the Appalachian Mountains (a US area) has destroyed homes, poisoned wells, and polluted streams (4). He also drops the UN Environmental Report stating that large-scale mining in general has disastrous environmental effects. And remember that Africa already has a lot of trouble with this, the US joining in would add more fuel to the fire, hastening the impacts of air and water pollution. I said this last round, but poisoning Africa's air and water supply outweighs any monetary benefit since it affects the living condition of everyone on the continent.

2. And his entire Trade argument relies on us actually digging out all of Africa's minerals, which I just showed is a bad idea.


C4: History

So Pro now says that to westernize Africa, we have to "promote Western culture". What does this even mean? Like, we have to introduce them to Western things like Hip-Hop and Justin Bieber? If my interpretation is wrong (its not, I even gave the Wiki source to show you what Westernization actually is), Pro needs to explain what he's actually advocating here.

He also says we need to install a pro-western government in all the warring Africa countries. Ok, thats 23+ governments we're having to overthrow and transfigure into a Pro-US system. My source on the African weapons trade earlier showed you that their militants wield modern assault rifles, grenade launchers, and anti-aircraft weaponry. So we would have to conquer 23 countries who wield these things. We had enough trouble with just one country in Iraq; so bad that we pulled out after ten years. 23 countries is impossible. He's also dropped that its unaffordable, and since mining Africa's resources would destroy their environment, we can't fund it that way either. If we absolutely have to do something, prefer my alternative of an international effort.



Conclusion:


Pro's imperialistic plan would not only fail due to resistance from Africa's better-than-you-think militaries, but would be unaffordable as a long term strategy. Based off our failures in Iraq and Afghanistan, you can infer that trying to invade 23 more countries wouldnt go so well and would just add more soldiers and casualties into the fight, Finally, an attempt to take over a continent will spur terrorism and nuclear proliferation as countries begin to fear the US, and worry that they might be invaded next. Pro even says the US will continue to conquer other nations. This creates a world where everybody except the US lives in fear of invasion.


Good luck in Thett's last round.

Debate Round No. 3
thett3

Pro

Thanks for an excellent debate my friend.


Procedural note

Many times in his previous round my opponent accused me of not providing evidence for matters of common sense. I offer a blanket response that I need not source logical claims. Because of a need for brevity, this will be my only response to these numerous assertations.

Expansionism

Con point blank concedes that governments are inherently expansionist. He argues that "affirming will save 1000 Americans, but kill a million Africans, thats ok. Thats obviously insane". I personally agree with this analysis, but the problem is that since he's conceded that we SHOULD expand, he has to establish a weighing mechanism as to when we shouldn't, otherwise the ballot gos Aff by default because Aff is arguing for expansion. You can see that he has not done this; since he agrees that the U.S. needs an expansionist foreign policy you can vote Pro on this single issue, because he's failed to meet the BOP he gave himself. Only consider his arguments when he weighs them under an expansionist framework (which would negate his nuclear war, heg, and lost lives DA's because they would happen anyway).

Essentially, concessions in this round force us to presume that the U.S. SHOULD conquer someone.

I will now respond to his objections.

Human rights

1. Extend the analysis that the U.S. military budget is the largest which gives it a greater ability for conquest. He makes no response. This negates his U.N. CP, because the U.S. has a budget that accounts for nearly half of the worlds[1], then who would be doing most of the fighting? Prior U.N. missions have had heavy U.S. involvement with scant reward, so you can extend the benefits from my case too. This plan falls. Extend every attack on the EU, he's made no reply.

2. Ignore his contracters plan or turn it. It is not advantageous because the U.S. would not get to exploit Africas resources if it hires PMC's and then leaves. This further hurts his objection that the U.S. should not have to pay the costs of conquest alone, because his plan advocates this too. Turn it if you still find merit behind this idea because he makes no response to my plan of using the PMC's to do the heavy fighting, and sending in the military AFTERWARD to secure the conquest.

3. His DA's are non-unique using the status quo, and the imperialistic framework he's conceded to. The U.S. will exploit other countries regardless. He never replied to this when I said it in the previous round, extend.

4. Iraq- Extend the GDP raise advantage, he's ignored it. Liberating iraq from a dictator and then strengthening its economy at a cost of 1/10th the amount of individuals killed in car crashes over the same time period is incredibly advantageous for Iraq. Not to mention that it is now a puppet state and thereby under the protection of the most mighty empire on Earth.

Afghan- Extend the turn, he merely calls it "terrible". GDP rise coupled with an end to a civil war and an HDI raise= unquestionably good. Aff wins here. Further he never attempts to answer the question of why Africa would even have insurgents.

5. It is true I did not answer Cons assertation that the U.S. could not afford continued occupation. I thought that the economic calculation from resources exploitation (24 tril. in one country alone!), which he dropped instead arguing a ridiculous environmental impact outweighed. He never argues an actual cost anyway, or a trade-off argument (use X money for Y). No response made to my turn. Extend the evidence that interventionism is ingrained in U.S. policy; this turns his argument because if short term occupation is bad, and occupation will happen regardeless, then long term occupation (IE colonization) is preferable! This too is an issue that you can vote Pro on.

Human Cost

My assertation that Africa used WWII weapons was a hyperbole to show their lack of military sophistication. I cannot access my opponents sources (see comments) but considering that the U.S. and its Allies account for nearly all military spending, they are almost certainly the buyers of these weapons. What Con has posted about Africas ilitary capabilities proves my point. They have grenade launchers and a handful of AA missles...the U.S. has tanks, planes, trained soldiers, ships, rockets, satellites, spies, hegemony, ect. There truly is no contest. The USAF is the most powerful airforce in the world[2], no African AF ranks in the top 10. Our air superiority would win us the "war" before it even started. Extend the objection that Africans would likely prefer the US to their local warlords.

Heg

1. Con objection to my status quo argument is laughable. The U.S. has soldiers stationed in every region of the world[3], and uses its economic and soft power to force other countries to bend to its will. Honestly, I need not provide evidence for this, its logic; states act in self interest so obviously the U.S. (or any country) will exploit others. Con accuses me of dropping his prolif argument, but I responded to it, the actual dropping was done by him. Extend that the US could stop a nation trying to gain nuclear weapons. Further, extend all the way back from round 2 that Africa is strategically located and that heg deters nuclear war. He made no response.

2. Con concedes that there was little terrorism in Africa during the age of imperialism (which was hardly a century ago, in the 1900's, not 1800's[4]). He has NEVER explained how invading Africa is going to cause them to become terroists anyway. The Middle East is a different place, you hear of islamic militants all the time (even beofre US involement) but you dont hear of ethiopian militants, or south african militants. Violence that Africa is involved in is directed towards other Africans, not the countries that terrorists target. My opponent is mistaken in claiming that I didnt respond to his al queda analysis. He's only mentioned that orgnization once in the entire round in his round 3 rebuttal.

Resources

Extend:
That the U.S. would economically gain from this, he's made no response at all. Under the imperialistic framework he's conceded to, this is enough to vote Pro.

1. Ok, my opponent shows that there are some environmental hazards to mining, but using Cons logic there would never be any progress anywhere. When we stop living like animals we inherently harm the environment. Only vote Con on this if you wish to live off the land in the wilderness, otherwise we have to accept some economic harm for prosperity. Since this is his sole response to the massive increase of wealth Africa would see (24 trillion minimum), you can see that it stands. Cons minor impact is not enough to outweigh a better economy that would save lives (he never answered my argument that increased economics solves starvation). He doesnt even say how much of the African environment would be ruined. Since mining currently goes on in other parts of Africa, we can conclude that the impact is not substantial. There is simply no substance behind this argument.

History

I have said if before and I will repeat, westernization involves installing pro-western governmnts and culture. My opponent never questions that Africa is currently a deadly mix between western and african culture, and that the departure of Western society has been harmful to Africa. This is a serious blow to Con, who's entire argument stipulates that we have to instill democracy and a love for the biebs into Africa.

Con doesnt seem to understand that conquest would be a long-term occupation and westernization. Thus his objection that the US failed in short term interventions (Iraq) fails. African countries would not be hard for the U.S. to conquer, especially since he's dropped that many of them would prefer the U.S. anyway.

Conclusion:

Blackvoid did a wonderful job, and I thank him for taking part, but when we weigh this round the offense all goes to the Aff. I know that all of you disagree with my position, but please judge with an open mind.


Sources:

http://tinyurl.com...
BlackVoid

Con

Thanks Thett for whats been an intense debate on an even better topic. So that this doesnt become too long for judges, this round will focus on the four most important arguments in the round, and I will explain why I win all of them. First though,

"Procedural note"

I did accuse Pro of not giving evidence for several key statements last round, but he says he doesnt need to source logical claims. Except, most of his nonsourced arguments were factual claims, not logical ones. For instance, he blankly says that Africa uses old WW2 weapons, that the UN doesn't accomplish anything, and that US mining practices dont harm the environment. These are factual claims that are not "common sense". So at the end of the day, since I gave you specific evidence proving that these claims are wrong and he only gives his opinion that they are true, prefer my position due to more empirics.


Key arguments in this round:


1. Alternatives

Remember that if either of my alternatives to sole US conquest stand, you negate because I have a better plan than my opponent.

UN - Pro is right, the US would do much of the fighting if this was a UN international effort, but thats still better than us doing all of it ourselves. We only have 1.4 million people in our military, we will need assistance from other countries to succeed. Making this an international effort would not only reduce economic cost but also decrease the amount of US lives we have to risk. Pro blankly asserts that past UN missions have had scant reward. But again, and I know he hates me saying this, but he didnt give any evidence or proof of that...

EU - Cool, Pro drops it. He originally had one sentence against my EU alternative, which was a blank assertion that they just bicker and do nothing. I gave empirical proof last round that shows that this isn't the case, they have achieved peacekeeping missions. Pro only replies by saying that I dropped his argument. Guess he didnt see that response I listed.

Remember that these CP's are competitive. Pro's plan is solely a US mission which involves no-one else, whereas my CP's achieve his goal more efficiently by incorporating an international effort.


2. Can we take over 23 countries?

Remember my source stating that Africa's militaries are in possession of modern firearms, grenade launchers, AA missiles, and machine guns. Pro originally said that Africa used old weapons and had weak militaries (disproven by source), but last round he changed his argument to "well, we'd still beat them anyway". I agree that we (the US) have cool tanks and airplanes and all that, Taking over any individual one of these countries would be fairly simple. The issue is that there's 23 of these countries in possession of these weapons I listed. We only have 1.4 million people in our military, so even with better technology, a conquest of 23 countries (half a continent)is a fantasy. And even if it could be done, the casualties would be too high for the decision to be rational. Furthermore, he drops my argument that Africa won't take lightly to US intervention because war is all they know.


3. Nuclear prolif

Pro is right, we do have soldiers stationed across the world. For instance, we have a few thousand in Japan, Germany, Mexico, etc. Except this is hardly a conquest of these countries. We haven't "taken over" any country we have some soldiers in except Iraq and Afghanistan, so Pro's really exaggerating his impact. Therefore. since the US has only "conquered" 2 countries in this decade, the world doesn't see us as an imperialistic threat just yet. In contrast, taking over an entire continent (23+ countries) would signify a world takeover, leading to the nuclear proliferation disadvantage I've brought up since R2. He still hasn't denied that proliferation will inevitably lead to nuclear war.


4. Environment

Awesome, Pro has now entirely conceded that heavy mining of Africa's minerals will exacerbate their environmental damage. Remember back in my R2, when I said that harming Africa's environment (air/water pollution poisons life sources) would outweigh any monetary benefit. Pro waits until round 4 to actually contend this.

Pro responds by making a ridiculous straw man that I would advocate not doing anything prosperous if it would harm the environment. However, some environmental harms are okay so long as they are minor. Cut down a few trees, drain a couple lakes, burn certain areas of forest down. These are acceptable. But according to my evidence, the US joining in mining practices across Africa would exacerbate continental-scale air pollution, water pollution, and acid mine drainage. These harms are severe and cause suffering across the continent. We're not going to worsen these damages, which would assuredly lead to the death of thousands, for the promise of money. My impact of continental environmental destruction outweighs money.


Conclusion

If voters feel that Africa should be conquered (you shouldnt), prefer my alternative of an international effort, as opposed to one country taking over a continent by themselves. If you feel that one country cannot take over 23, which have more sophisticated military capabilities than my opponent originally thought, vote con. If you feel that conquering a continent would make other countries nervous, and would try to build nuclear arsenals to deter US aggression, vote con. and if you dont think that 1.4 million US soldiers (our entire military) can install 23 pro-western governments simultaneously, when we arguably havent even done it in Iraq or Afghanistan, well, you get the idea.

Again, thanks for the awesome debate.
Debate Round No. 4
51 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Kerb 1 year ago
Kerb
First the Egyptians exploited the people of Africa enslaving them, then the Arabs, then the European not only enslaved the people, abused their resources but also made the continent a hotbed for civil war with major social issues and poor economies. After thousands of years of abuse it's time Africa was left to build. Furthermore, the idea of America having a colony is oxymoronic.
Posted by Connor666 2 years ago
Connor666
And im sorry o anyone i offended
Posted by Connor666 2 years ago
Connor666
Im sorry my last comment was irrational. What i meant to say is that we really wont gain anything by going over there besides oil and diamonds. And many people would die in the process of invading. And other ocuntries won't be too fond of this.
Posted by thett3 2 years ago
thett3
lul no amerika is obs strongst bro. we culd fight evry contry at 1s and win bc we have cutizns ownin guns.
Posted by BlackVoid 2 years ago
BlackVoid
Thett wat u talkin bout, da UN is like teh strongest govmnt in da world. Dey can control entire wrld wit their left pinkey.
Posted by thett3 2 years ago
thett3
OMG we might go against the UN?!?!? A non-governmental body with no formal powers, that we ignore on a regular basis anyway? OH MY GOD. lulz
Posted by morganhill 2 years ago
morganhill
I agree, why would we want to put some of our people over there and infest them with AIDS.. And even if we did take it over, what would we do with it? it would be pointless, and just start another world war, as well as go against the UN.
Posted by Connor666 2 years ago
Connor666
WHo WOULD WANT TO CONTROL THAT HELLHOLE INFESTED WITH ANIMALS AND AIDS??!!??!!
Posted by Raisor 2 years ago
Raisor
I can't believe this came down to a one point vote....
Posted by thett3 2 years ago
thett3
omg bv ur so st00pid u obvisly pade ppl 2 vote 4 u cheeter. i win not u.
13 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by royalpaladin 2 years ago
royalpaladin
thett3BlackVoidTied
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Reasons for voting decision: This was a very close debate, but I think that BV wins the international efforts argument as well as the contention about environmentalism. Other than that, this debate was a tie.
Vote Placed by Deathbeforedishonour 2 years ago
Deathbeforedishonour
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Reasons for voting decision: Good debate, but I have to give this one to pro because he did a better job in proving the economic benefits for such a invasion.
Vote Placed by 000ike 2 years ago
000ike
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Reasons for voting decision: Oh, someone already countered, I have to neutralize this. I'll vote later.
Vote Placed by cameronl35 2 years ago
cameronl35
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Reasons for voting decision: Counter...
Vote Placed by RussianFish99 2 years ago
RussianFish99
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Reasons for voting decision: .
Vote Placed by socialpinko 2 years ago
socialpinko
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Reasons for voting decision: Until williamcarter cares to share an RFD
Vote Placed by williamcarter 2 years ago
williamcarter
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Reasons for voting decision: I can not share my beliefs right now.
Vote Placed by Raisor 2 years ago
Raisor
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments
Vote Placed by ConservativePolitico 2 years ago
ConservativePolitico
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Reasons for voting decision: I found Con's arguments in the Human Cost catagory to be an acceptable argument against conquering Africa. Also he pointed out that hegemony and empire building, no matter how good the intentions usually is unaccepted would cause the US harm that does not outweigh the benefits of a successful capture of the continnent.
Vote Placed by 16kadams 2 years ago
16kadams
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Reasons for voting decision: pro didn't like my RFD and claims I didn't read the debate so I'll tie it so he doesn't get pissed.