Talk:Proxy war

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Improvements, Current and Future[edit]

Article needs a lot more work. It's a shame that one this important to the history and science of warfare has gotten so little love (just think of a couple examples of proxy wars and go check out their pages, especially their thousands of words and hundreds of cites).

"Effects" section needs to be deleted and rewritten entirely, figured I'd hold off on the delete part of that until I have time to write it. Added a couple sentences and cites at the end to start that off. Rewrote "Reasons" section but it's also got a ways to go. Could be an article in itself.

Needs a section explaining that nations almost universally try to disavow their role as proxy belligerents, sometimes going to great lengths, with various results (eg iran-contra affair).

Needs one on propaganda too (many proxy wars are major propaganda wars as well), as well as one on international involvement: since the post-Cold War realignment, most have seen at least a few skirmishes fought between diplomats on the UN floor. This is especially important (and interesting) with the separate Security Council and General Assembly dynamics in play, since the US and Russia are perennial proxy belligerents.

Also, try to refrain from political arguments on both the article and talk page if at all possible. This is probably too much to ask with several proxy wars either ongoing or fresh in editor's minds, but if those get too heated, it's fine to focus on the older (and colder!) ones: they're just as important (if not more). -- bornLoser (talk) 19:15, 28 September 2015 (UTC)

Kashmir Conflict[edit]

Militants trained in Pakistan Administered Kashmir, Pakistan and Afghanistan have been involved in terrorism in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir (See: Insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir). 3,200 militants are believed to be operating in the Indian state, and so far 29,000 Indian civilians have been killed in the insurgency which has also resulted in the ethnic cleansing and displacement of over 790,000 Kashmiri Pundit Hindus. The Kargil War in 1999 was fought between India and Militants backed by Pakistan." The above comment sites the article 'Insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir' as its source but does not accurately summarize the article. Does it need to be changed to be more accurate? (talk) 10:24, 18 May 2008 (UTC)

I think that this article should be given more detail, using less specific examples. I will attempt to work on it as I can. --Joshua Boniface 22:00, 28 June 2006 (UTC)

I've removed the POV statement "Where they infiltrate into Indian held Kashmir, to spite the locals, and fight blindly what to them is a freedom struggle." and mentioned Radical Islamism above. Is "Radical Islamist" correct, or is it "Radical Muslim" or "Radical Islam"? Laogooli 01:41, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

US and Afghans becoming al Qaida[edit]

the article is wrong when it says that the US funded Afghan resistence became al Qaida; if you study the war you'll know there were instead two very seperate and distinct anti-Soviet factions. In the 80s, the US funded (via the Pakistan intelligence agency) around half of the Afghan resistence fighters. The rest of the forces were Jihad fighters, funded by Saudi (Bin Laden etc), had a different objective (ie Jihad instead of defending their homeland), didn't receive money from the US (instead it was from Saudi nationals) and wouldn't have accepted CIA money anyway as they were staunchly anti American/Zionist.

As with all intelligence and counterintelligence ops, any and all evidence is anecdotal (the rest being Top Secret and rotting in some cellar somewhere). However, there has never been *even* anecdotal evidence pointing to any lack of love whatsoever between Osama&Co. and the CIA during the Afghan campaign. In fact, there is a lot more linking Osama to American-funded anti-Soviet terrorism than to current anti-American events (someone shaggy wearing a towel in a cave, on home video, claiming credit for being David to the USA's Goliath? very solid evidence indeed). Rather, it would seem to make more sense to see this in the light of the Osama brand's reputation from the Afghan war being recycled today for use as a banner-type mythical fearless leader with whereabouts unknown (by persons unknown). Aadieu (talk) 00:20, 20 June 2008 (UTC)

Soviets in proxy wars[edit]

While not openly, Soviets did participate in Korean (MiG pilots), Vietnam (SAM crews) and Middle East wars (5 “Egyptian” MiG-21 lost and 4 Russian pilots dead in a single encounter with Israeli Mirage IIIs and Phantoms over Sinai in 1970, numbers may vary depending on source), also in Africa (at least as instructors and military counsellors) and Central and South America (at least KGB’s special team “Vympel” learned a very special handgun shooting technique from Nicaraguan instructor and different Soviet special forces had survival courses in this part of the World, I don’t know what degree of involvement they had in local conflicts, if they had any). Fun side of this rather grim subject was how Soviet pilots failed to speak Korean despite strict orders it was completely impossible (to look for some common phrases written down in Russian and their Korean pronunciation in Cyrillic transcription) in the heat of battle. Also, pilots of the UN forces were denied to attack airfield, that was clearly visible, but it was on China’s side and, more importantly, that could cause great Soviet ground personnel casualties and lead to open conflict or even WWIII.

Lasis 06:52, 31 August 2007 (UTC)

Stock Proxy Wars[edit]

Certain Investors will forge proxy wars against management of public companies —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:27, 15 May 2008 (UTC)

Arab-Isreali Wars[edit]

Is there a reason that these are not included as proxy wars? In a military sense they very much were. Dhatfield (talk) 14:50, 20 May 2008 (UTC)

Skewed bias[edit]

Very observable pro-USA bias here, both in statements and in omissions (selection of examples)... Most facts are true, but the wording...!!! This, however, is utter bs: "China however did enter the war directly and sent millions of its troops in 1950 preventing the U.N. coalition from defeating the communist government of the north." - millions?! Plural generally means more than 2... Someone please at least provide data that China's ENTIRE army ever had that many soldiers. Even American high school textbooks never claimed millions of Chinese 'volunteers'. Aadieu (talk) 00:06, 20 June 2008 (UTC)

I suggest that you be bold and go ahead and make appropriate edits. Dhatfield (talk) 00:16, 20 June 2008 (UTC)
Sorry, forgot to add that if you are making dramatic changes, please reference them. It keeps things from escalating into an opinion-slinging match, which is no fun to be in or to watch. Dhatfield (talk) 00:22, 20 June 2008 (UTC)

I went ahead and removed the reference to Ahmadinejad's speech in the Lebanon War section, as it was irrelevant and took two contradictory positions at different points in the sentence. If anyone can think of a way to rewrite it in a concise manner that does not present opinion as fact, be my guest. ESentinel (talk) 03:57, 4 February 2009 (UTC)

Why Are There Many Strike Throughs on the Table of Contents in this Discussion Page?[edit]

Just Curious :/ --Agent Agent (talk) 16:56, 5 March 2009 (UTC)

Old test edits that added </s> to the text. Fixed it now, :-) Maedin\talk 17:14, 5 March 2009 (UTC)

Proxy Wars in South Asia[edit]

Is there any proof or references for this? Removed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:55, 13 March 2009 (UTC)

Northern Ireland[edit]

Could the sporadic violence in Northern Ireland (and the occasional "spillover" bombings and other incidents in "mainland" UK) be regarded as a low intensity proxy war between the Republic of Ireland and the UK? Roger (talk) 09:24, 19 May 2011 (UTC)

The Republic of Ireland expended too much effort disrupting republican paramilitaries and trying to prevent explosives and firearms from crossing the border into Northern Ireland to be deemed as pursuing a proxy war against the UK. If there were a proxy war here, it would be between Libya (which supported the IRA) and the UK.--Brian Dell (talk) 14:21, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Which indicates how absurd the concept is.--Jack Upland (talk) 10:18, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Colbert identifies the Space Race as a proxy war[edit]

Colbert quote:

But for God's sake, you brought a plaque up there which reads:
Come on! The Space Race was a proxy war against the Soviets. That plaque should have read:


That quote is from the Colbert Report's piece on Neil Armstrong from last Friday (starts immediately after the commercial break):

I see this to be worthy of inclusion in the article. It will be a huge help for people trying to understand what the Space Race really was.--Tdadamemd (talk) 08:15, 3 September 2012 (UTC)

Only if you can provide a photograph of the plaque.--Jack Upland (talk) 10:19, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

This article looks encyclopedically useless and wrong to me[edit]

I distrust this article, especially the lead section: it seems to me vague fantasy of one or several editors. I'm not convinced that 'proxy war' is a relevant typification of wars if there aren't any real serious references in a section dealing with the definition of 'proxy war' (we now have only three refs in a section dealing with a (supposed) 'example').

Possibly – but there’s no proof of it yet – there are scholars, journalists, et cetera, who use ‘proxy war’ to indicate that a certain war has certain characteristics. Possibly, again, the qualifications such individual scholars or journalists require from a war before they call it a ‘proxy war’ have some resemblances, but also some differences.

In that case, a Wiki-article could give a serious overview and comparison of such individual definitions from scholars (not from Wiki editors!) of the term ‘proxy war’. The present article does no such thing: all it gives is a fantasy-attempt at a fantasy-definition from just one Wikipedia editor. That’s not what Wikipedia should do. Therefore, I’ll have to propose deletion of this article. --Corriebertus (talk) 21:32, 15 March 2014 (UTC)

For crying out loud, go do a GBook search. It's a widely used term. Mangoe (talk) 00:55, 16 March 2014 (UTC)
That’s not my point, I didn’t deny the word exists, and is being used. Wiki is not for presenting words, but for presenting ‘things’, entities, etc., represented by words. I’m not going to do any ‘search on a GBook’ (whatever that may be), I’m busy enough, thank you. The search or research should be done by the person who chooses to write a Wiki-article on some subject; for example subject ‘proxy war’. Now, read my criticism of yesterday again, if you like. Corriebertus (talk) 20:01, 16 March 2014 (UTC)
The term proxy was has been used by countless government, historical and news sources. I agree that this article needs clean up, but this article meets notability requirements.Spirit of Eagle (talk) 02:59, 17 March 2014 (UTC)
"Proxy war" is a sloppy term which is often used, but doesn't seem ever to be appropriate. Does anyone think that the American War of Independence was "instigated" by France? Maybe a few nutcases. The archetypical "proxy war" is probably the Korean War. However, that was a civil war which was initiated by the withdrawal of the superpowers. The US (and other countries) then intervened heavily, so it wasn't "proxy" at all. All these wars were considered vital and real by the local people who fought them. It is just that great powers became involved, and some rather superficial analysts now view the conflicts in terms of the larger global context, downplaying the local conflict. It would be better to give an explanation of the concept and then give some examples, while noting that these are not universally accepted as "proxy wars".--Jack Upland (talk) 10:12, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Dropping Examples Section[edit]

I plan on rewriting this article to improve the definition it provides. To me, having an examples section is useless since there's an article that is specifically a list of proxy wars. What do people think of me providing a link to the list, then completely dropping the rest of page, making this article into a definition with a few examples. From the list of proxy wars, a user could go to the article for any specific war they wanted, and get the information there. (If you want to see the current draft of the revision, it's here.) Compassionate727 (talk) 17:09, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

I think the entire article is problematic, as discussed above. A proxy is someone who acts for someone else. None of the examples fit this. I think we need (1) citations from reliable sources, (2) neutrality, in terms of an acknowledgement that not everyone agrees with these examples.--Jack Upland (talk) 10:17, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
I'm currently working on rewriting the entire article. You can see my progress here. The problem is that people want to define a proxy war as a war that is started by a country that isn't involved in the war. This is a bad definition, as major countries don't directly start a war and then not fight it. I think that a proxy war is a war where one or more participants are supported financially by an outside country, with the outside country doing this to achieve its ends in the region. Compassionate727 (talk) 13:38, 27 April 2015 (UTC)
But that isn't what "proxy" means.--Jack Upland (talk) 06:28, 2 May 2015 (UTC)
That's because English is dumb language when it comes to definitions (and everything else, but we're just talking about definitions here). "Gross" means "unattractively large," but it also means "an amount of money" and "144." "Score" is a numerical count, but it also means "20." "Second" means to constitute number 2 in a sequence, but it's also a unit of time. "Minute" has a total of 13 definitions according to Need I go on? Compassionate727 (talk) 16:57, 4 May 2015 (UTC)
But there isn't a definition of "proxy" that means that. When people say "proxy war", they mean proxy war. It's just that there don't seem to be any real proxy wars.--Jack Upland (talk) 08:06, 14 February 2017 (UTC)

Syrian Civil War[edit]

This is a questionable inclusion with some original research involved. The one source used doesn't show that or suggest this is a proxy war. It also doesn't show that proxy wars can have a huge impact, especially on the local area. While there is a huge death toll there's no source to suggest that this is the result of a proxy war.-Serialjoepsycho- (talk) 07:12, 18 October 2015 (UTC)

Lede - why a conflict between two states or non-state actors[edit]

Why restrict the description of a proxy war to a conflict between two states or non-state actors? Even the Spanish Civil War exemplar had a variety of states backing the combatants. Can I suggest saying two or more states or non-state actors. Batternut (talk) 07:42, 16 February 2017 (UTC)

I agree.--Jack Upland (talk) 08:25, 16 February 2017 (UTC)