Meta-Blog

SEARCH QandO

Email:
Jon Henke
Bruce "McQ" McQuain
Dale Franks
Bryan Pick
Billy Hollis
Lance Paddock
MichaelW

BLOGROLL QandO

 
 
Recent Posts
The Ayers Resurrection Tour
Special Friends Get Special Breaks
One Hour
The Hope and Change Express - stalled in the slow lane
Michael Steele New RNC Chairman
Things that make you go "hmmmm"...
Oh yeah, that "rule of law" thing ...
Putting Dollar Signs in Front Of The AGW Hoax
Moving toward a 60 vote majority?
Do As I Say ....
 
 
QandO Newsroom

Newsroom Home Page

US News

US National News
Politics
Business
Science
Technology
Health
Entertainment
Sports
Opinion/Editorial

International News

Top World New
Iraq News
Mideast Conflict

Blogging

Blogpulse Daily Highlights
Daypop Top 40 Links

Regional

Regional News

Publications

News Publications

 
Hey, they’re terrorists, what do you expect?
Posted by: McQ on Friday, July 28, 2006

It appears that Israeli munitions are now being questioned in Gaza as well. Sounds like a trend. Or perhaps a campaign. I covered the claims from southern Lebanon yesterday:
Doctors say they have never before seen such specific burn injuries, concentrated so much on the lower body and causing such a high propensity of amputations. The health ministry has already called for an independent inquiry.

A French humanitarian group reported unusually severe injuries. One of its doctors reportedly raised the possibility that Israel used cluster bombs.

In response to a query about use of a new type of weapon possibly containing chemicals, the army said only that "specific claims are being checked".

"The IDF (Israel Defence Force) use of weapon and ammunition conforms with international law," it said in a statement.
If anyone doubts the terrorists are winning the public relations war, these reports and the turning of world opinion against Israel should begin to make that clear.

It points to expectations. Israel is a nation, a democracy, and is therefore expected to wage a 'humanitarian war', whatever that means. Thus anything which seems to deviate from the arbitrary definition the world decides to place on 'humanitarian war' places Israel in a morally untenable situation if they deviate (even if they have no idea of what the expectation might be). I talked a bit about that yesterday when I looked at the world's selective outrage. Of course the bottom line is that anything which anyone (or any nation) deems to be outside of their definition of "humanitarian war" is fodder for news reports like the one above.

On the other hand, terrorists are terrorists. Apparently we expect them to be inhuman. When they are we accept that as the nature of the beast. Consequently when they purposely lob rockets targeting civilians and filled with ball bearings, we essentially pass the behavior off as typical. They're not the subject of scrutiny (like we see in the report on Israel) as their barbarity is expected behavior. They're terrorists. We expect that of terrorists. And they take advantage of our willingness to essentially be less critical of their behavior.

So while Hezbollah merrily continues to kill Israeli civilians with missiles designed to maximize their civilian killing potential, nary a question is asked about whether they use weapons and ammunition which "conforms with international law".

They're terrorists for heaven sake. And because they're not held to the same standards or expectations, they're easily winning the propaganda war.
 
TrackBacks
Return to Main Blog Page
 
 

Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
Standard - if it weren’t the Israelis they were bitching at, it’d be the US.

Not that I want us to take up practices like routinely targeting civilians for rocket strikes and sawing off heads of prisoners.

I’m going to go so far as to say this reflects a certain amount of cultural prejudice.
As you said the "what did you expect?" factor enters it as we generically suggest "hey! they’re terroists!".

So, let me pour some oil on the relativism fire -
I submit we even have different expectations for terrorists.
If the IRA (terrorists) started sawing the heads off of British soldiers they took prisoner, what do you think the world reaction would be?
Outrage? Horror?
Yet Islamic Terrorists do this and everyone just nods and says "well, what did you expect?".
I think we expect ’western first/second world’ terrorists to maintain a certain level of semi-civilized behavior that we just don’t expect to get from the ’Islamic world’ terrorists.

Why is that?
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
If the IRA (terrorists) started sawing the heads off of British soldiers they took prisoner
I’d even add that if that had been one of their tactics they would have lost all support from the local population as well as the $ that flowed in from the US and around the world.

Why is that? That may be the million dollar question. It may just be a cultural thing. To the west, even for a terrorist there are standards or limits on what you can get away with. I’m just not sure the Islamofacists have any limits. They’ll strap HE to a kid to go blow up the Joooooooooos. Why’s that?
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
So while Hezbollah merrily continues to kill Israeli civilians with missiles designed to maximize their civilian killing potential, nary a question is asked about whether they use weapons and ammunition which "conforms with international law".
Now now, don’t be so hasty. AFter all, our esteemed Supreme Court recently ruled that stateless terror groups are to be treated as if they’re signatories to international conventions and treaties. So maybe they are conforming with international law!
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Sorry, McQ, but I’ve never thought this particular complaint made much sense. Who exactly is okay with terrorists cutting off heads and lobbing bombs into civilian areas? No one is. What you’re pointing to is not a lack of condemnation but a lack of dispute. But people don’t waste their time pointing out that terrorist groups are violating international law because, almost by definition, terrorists groups operate in violation of international law. People don’t spend a lot of time focusing on things that are manifestly obvious. Find me one person who has defended the tactics used by Hezbollah.

But do you really think the appropriateness of Israeli (or American) action should be judged by comparison to the tactics of vicious terrorists? Should Israel or American be allowed to engage in any tactics its enemies use? Do you really want to live in a world where everyone thinks its okay to stoop to the level of your enemy?

If not, then I really don’t understand this particular gripe.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
Now now, don’t be so hasty. AFter all, our esteemed Supreme Court recently ruled that stateless terror groups are to be treated as if they’re signatories to international conventions and treaties. So maybe they are conforming with international law!

Shark, this is a common myth about Hamdan. The Court in Hamdan only held that Article III of Geneva applied, not the rest of the articles. Article III is the common article, meant to apply to non-state conflicts. Art. III, by definition, applies to non-signatories. It has to. It wouldn’t make sense otherwise.

It’s comparable to international treaties against whaling. In those treaties the signatory countries pledge to treat whales a certain way. It doesn’t matter that the whales themselves are not signatories.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
In this case ...

Hezbollah and Hamas (it turns out it might not have been Hamas) attacked uniformed military personal and took captives. Israel has killed, injured and dislocated large numbers of civilians. They have ordered people out of south Lebanon but blown up the roads they need to travel. They have not established any safe zones where the people can flee too. Its hard to imagine a series of actions that would cause more sympathy for the Islamic cause. This is not the first time that Israel has used indiscriminate force against the innocent.

http://www.ussliberty.org/

Perhaps we should put more thought into where the US interests are rather than blindly supporting them regardless. Its not like they consult us before acting.

 
Written By: cindyb
URL: http://
Who exactly is okay with terrorists cutting off heads and lobbing bombs into civilian areas? No one is.
Well, if that were true, then the funding for these terrorist groups would dry up and Palestinians and others on the "Islamic street" wouldn’t be dancing for joy when Israel or others in the West suffer at the hands of terrorists.

What do you expect of societies that cut the hands and heads off their criminals?

That may be the cultural key your looking for.
 
Written By: Keith, Indy
URL: http://
Well, if that were true, then the funding for these terrorist groups would dry up and Palestinians and others on the "Islamic street" wouldn’t be dancing for joy when Israel or others in the West suffer at the hands of terrorists.

Keith, by "no one" I meant the major democracies of the world and the general Western intelligensia, i.e, the same people McQ’s post seemed to be addressed to. Of course there are people who support terrorists. My point, however, is that no one serious is disputing the fact that terrorist tactics violate international law.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
Hezbollah and Hamas (it turns out it might not have been Hamas) attacked uniformed military personal and took captives. Israel has killed, injured and dislocated large numbers of civilians.
Crikey!!! Cindyb you are starting to get me more aggravate than even mk these days. So a group of civilian looking terrorists attack, kill and kidnap UNIFORMED troops. And you are questioning the methods that Israel uses to make sure that does not happen again?

They have not established any safe zones where the people can flee too
I’m going to defer to yesterday’s post where someone went through, in detail all the areas that Israel is specifically NOT attacking which makes them SAFE ZONES. People can make it to those safe zones on foot. What more are you looking for?
This is not the first time that Israel has used indiscriminate force against the innocent.
For 60 years they have been attacked by military and terrorist opponents. Civilian looking people magically ’explode’ at a pizzaria. Rockets rain down on their civilians launched not from military bases but from back yards and rooftops. They have the military capacity to level ALL of the middle east, yet you show contempt to them for defending themselves. Just d@mn cindyb. Just d@mn.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
What you’re pointing to is not a lack of condemnation but a lack of dispute. But people don’t waste their time pointing out that terrorist groups are violating international law because, almost by definition, terrorists groups operate in violation of international law.
I think you’re missing the point. Let me again say it:
If anyone doubts the terrorists are winning the public relations war, these reports and the turning of world opinion against Israel should begin to make that clear.
You and I are in agreement here AL. What I’m pointing to is the result of the dynamic to which we are each pointing.

I’m of the opinion and impression that the terrorists are winning the PR war (communication war, media war, whatever you care to call it) because they don’t suffer the same scrutiny as do nations like the US and Israel. And that is a definite negative in this type of warfare.

I’m not saying that we should be like them, I’m saying because we accept as "the nature of the beast" what they do, we (others, Israel) leave the field in the PR war wide open to them. They point the finger at us and everyone goes bonkers. When fingers are pointed at them, everyone shrugs. That’s a win for their side.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Cindy ... go read this.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
I’m not saying that we should be like them, I’m saying because we accept as "the nature of the beast" what they do, we (others, Israel) leave the field in the PR war wide open to them. They point the finger at us and everyone goes bonkers. When fingers are pointed at them, everyone shrugs. That’s a win for their side.
People don’t go bonkers because the terrorists are pointing fingers, McQ. The terrorist groups don’t have any credibility in the West. People go bonkers because Israel seems to be making an already highly volatile situation worse. Have you read Michael Totten’s latest dispatch or the article in the Times today about how Arab opinion has shifted from ambivalence or even condemnation of Hezbollah to support for it? This is why Israel is being criticized. Their tactics appear to many (including myself) to be counterproductive and therefore gratuitous.

You seem to think that this sort of criticism of Israel is helping the terrorists win the PR war. But Al Jazeera and the various Muslim news outlets are going to say what they’re going to say regardless of what any Western powers say about Israel, and they’ll have plenty of pictures to go along with it.

But Israel’s behavior is more important from a Western standpoint. We have relations with Israel and can influence what they do. The terrorist groups, on the other hand, cannot be influenced in the same sense. They already operate entirely outside of international law and don’t really give a crap what anyone thinks about them, particularly in the West.

I’m not sure what my point is, but it just seems to me that it’s not as simple as who’s getting better press coverage.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
I’m of the opinion and impression that the terrorists are winning the PR war because they don’t suffer the same scrutiny as do nations like the US and Israel.
How true...

Just look to cindyb right here:
Israel has killed, injured and dislocated large numbers of civilians. They have ordered people out of south Lebanon but blown up the roads they need to travel. They have not established any safe zones where the people can flee too.
Vile, mean Israel... how dare they attack all those innocent Lebonese. The terrorist PR works because far to many want to believe it.
Perhaps we should put more thought into where the US interests are rather than blindly supporting them regardless.
Perhaps people ought to start to think rather than blindly opposing everything Israel and Bush do.
 
Written By: bains
URL: http://
Perhaps people ought to start to think rather than blindly opposing everything Israel and Bush do.
The problem in America is exactly the opposite, in my opinion, at least with respect to Israel. In America, there is too much reflexive support of all Israeli policy. If anyone says anything critical, they are immediately accused of being anti-semetic or anti-Israel, even if they are merely saying something that half of the Israeli population would agree with. It’s amazing how much more real debate there is in Israel than here.

The problem is that strategic disagreements are interpreted to be moral disagreements. I, for instance, think that Israel’s current offensive in Lebanon is terrible policy. But that’s not because I hate Israel or sympathize with Hezbollah.

Just because Israel has the moral high-ground doesn’t mean that every policy it adopts is the correct one. There needs to be more serious policy thinking on this side of the pond and less reflexive support for everything Israel does.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
Shark, this is a common myth about Hamdan. The Court in Hamdan only held that Article III of Geneva applied, not the rest of the articles. Article III is the common article, meant to apply to non-state conflicts. Art. III, by definition, applies to non-signatories. It has to. It wouldn’t make sense otherwise.
A conflict in which we are involved that is not within the territory of the United States does not fall under Article 3.
 
Written By: Mark A. Flacy
URL: http://
You seem to think that this sort of criticism of Israel is helping the terrorists win the PR war.
Since I avoid the MSM like the plague - I have to ask.
In any given story about attacks on either side of the border between Israel and Lebennon, where is more reporting emphasis placed?

I know a lot about the things Israel has destroyed, but I hear very little about the Hezbollah rocket attacks.
I do know we aren’t subjected to day after day counts by the NYT of how long the Israeli soldiers has been in captivity now, or speculation about the treatment they are receiving.
But Al Jazeera and the various Muslim news outlets are going to say what they’re going to say regardless of what any Western powers say about Israel, and they’ll have plenty of pictures to go along with it.

But Israel’s behavior is more important from a Western standpoint. We have relations with Israel and can influence what they do.
What if the Western approach were to support Israel, and what they’re doing? Lofty articles about the need for Israel to secure their borders, to crush Hezbollah before they can attack any more Israeli civilians.
I understand you don’t see their current methods as productive.
Perhaps you don’t see it as productive precisely because of the way the media presents it in the propaganda war - in that you should expect "better" from Israel, and that their current approach isn’t going to accomplish anything, etc.
Their tactics appear to many (including myself) to be counterproductive and therefore gratuitous
Their tactics, as presented to you, courtesy of the western media, unless you’re currently typing from somewhere close to the southern border of Lebannon and are a first hand witness.

I’m not saying you’re wrong, or that Israel isn’t doing something wrong, or that they can never be criticized, but I have to step back and wonder how much slant I get in the reports, the focus of the reports, and the conclusions of the reports.

The propaganda war.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
A conflict in which we are involved that is not within the territory of the United States does not fall under Article 3.
That’s one possible reading of Art. III, but respectfully, it’s hardly the most obvious one. If you look back at the history of Art. III, it was pretty clearly intended to be a baseline, common denominator for treatment of all detainees. It was the fallback provision meant to cover people who weren’t covered by the main articles. It would be pretty odd if homegrown terrorists were covered but not foreign ones. I think most courts around the world interpret the term "international" in art. III to mean a conflict between nation states.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
But do you really think the appropriateness of Israeli (or American) action should be judged by comparison to the tactics of vicious terrorists? Should Israel or American be allowed to engage in any tactics its enemies use? Do you really want to live in a world where everyone thinks its okay to stoop to the level of your enemy?
Yes. Go read the Geneva convention again, actually read it, not what you think it says.

Note how most of the provisions that people think about only apply to those who also follow the convention. If a signatory fires chemical weapons at another signitory, the first is presumed in violation, and the target is now free to fire chemical weapons back. And they are not in violation.

The international structure that we in the West know and love is fundamentally built on "stooping" to the level of the enemy. Because we agree that some tactics are horrible, and we agree not to use them if you don’t, we have long lived in a world where the tactics have not been necessary. This structure falls down if one side is not willing to be horrible. MAD was a special case of this general principle. MAD only worked if the other side truly believed that the US would nuke it out of existence at the first launch. Anything less and MAD would fail.

We are engaged in an experiment to see if we are so powerful that we can extend humanity to our opponents, even when they refuse to restrain themselves. However, if it turns out we can’t, then our choices will be to get "nasty" or get defeated (no scarequotes). The latter means immediate extinction for Israel, and delayed extinction for the US (but extinction nonetheless).

If our unprecedented experiment with unreciprocated humanity fails, we’ll have no choice but "stoop" to using the old, primitive, yet proven-effective tactics of old, and our morality will be superior for having at least tried first. Winning that way by necessity will be no more immoral than having won WWI or WWII. Thinking otherwise is, regrettably and horribly, thinking that leads to losing and the corresponding, inevitable, immutable penalties.

War sucks. Losing them sucks much, much worse.
 
Written By: Anonymous
URL: http://
But people don’t waste their time pointing out that terrorist groups are violating international law because, almost by definition, terrorists groups operate in violation of international law. People don’t spend a lot of time focusing on things that are manifestly obvious. Find me one person who has defended the tactics used by Hezbollah.
Would it be a waste for time for the NYT, the WaPo, etc to focus a lot of time on the mechanics of sawing off a living persons head? You know, the medical effects, what the person is likely feeling?
Would it be a waste of time for the Western Press to launch a campaign of telling the ’east’ just how barbaric we think that sort of behavior is?
Just how barbaric it is to go into a shopping mall and detonate yourself?
Give it the Abu-Gharib treatment, day in, day out.

It’s not relative, we don’t do that here, we don’t think it’s acceptable here, we don’t allow it here. I’m of the mind that perhaps we need to harp on it, continually, you people are barbarians, you are not fit for civilized company, and are not fit to interact with civilized countries.

But we won’t, because aside from being boring and un-newsy, right there in my previous line is all the opening ’we’ need to condem our own behavior ("Bombs aren’t civilized!" "Abu-Gharib", "Git-mo!").
Rather than condemn their behavior, we’ll wallow in our own guilt for any time we’ve committed an act, and try to rationalize that our committing it once is identical to their repeated acts, performed on a daily basis.

As long as we excuse them because we expect less than civilized behavior from them, they’ll continue to take advantage of it.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
McQ

I checked out http://www.aish.com/jewishissues/middleeast/Lebanon_Myths_and_Facts.asp

It has a banner saying "Ammunition for how you can defend Israel"

Do you have any reason to believe that aish is more objective or accurate than Aljazeera other than it supports your point of view? It there any reason to belive that AISH is going to put American interests on a par with Israels?
Perhaps you believe that it is not possible that Israel and the US could have differing national interests.

Oh, and you failed to comment on this:

http://www.ussliberty.org/




 
Written By: cindyb
URL: http://
It has a banner saying "Ammunition for how you can defend Israel"
Well yeah, and then they defend their points with cites and facts. Isn’t that how it is supposed to work?
Oh, and you failed to comment on this:
You failed to tell me what relevance it has to what we’re talking about.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
If it turns out we can’t, then our choices will be to get "nasty" or get defeated (no scarequotes). The latter means immediate extinction for Israel, and delayed extinction for the US (but extinction nonetheless).

Look, international terrorism is a serious threat, but it’s hardly the existential threat you make it out to be, especially for the U.S. Even under the worst case scenario, our sovereignty is not at risk. But if we allow ourselves to stoop to the level of our barbarian enemies, everything that makes this country what it is will be lost. I know that sounds cliche, but it’s true. Al Qaeda will never "beat" us. But we might beat ourselves if we follow your advice.

It’s not about what the Geneva conventions allow us to do. It’s about who we are as a country (and I’ll note for the record that you too seem to be ignoring Art. III, which applies regardless of what the enemy does). Somehow we made it through a couple world wars without resorting to torturing prisoners or stooping to the level of our enemies (i.e., ethnic cleansing, committing atrocities against captive populations, etc.).

 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
The propaganda war.
AL — that’s the point of this post. We seem to keep wandering off into other fields. My point is that the nature of the two sides in this war gives the advantage to the terrorist in the propaganda war, and it always will.

It is important that we realize that and take it into consideration before we enter into rounds of excessive self-flagellation. We should, and for the most part do, attempt to fight "humanitarian wars". But since we don’t hold our enemy to the same standard (they’re essentially given a bye) they have the advantage in the propaganda war ... the shrug of which I was speaking.

For instance, the awful and inhumane deaths suffered by the 2 captured soldiers. Compared to Abu Ghraib they got nothing in terms of column inches and air time. However what the terrorists did was 100 times worse than anything we did at AG.

But hey, we expected it, after all, "they’re terrorists." Guess who wins that propaganda battle?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Somehow we made it through a couple world wars without resorting to torturing prisoners or stooping to the level of our enemies (i.e., ethnic cleansing, committing atrocities against captive populations, etc.).
Those things aren’t what I’m talking about. I’m talking about hamstringing our efforts because we can’t harm civilians unnecessarily, whereas the enemy freely kills everybody they can, civilian or military.

I used WWII advisedly; today, that war would be condemned for any number of reasons. We didn’t engage in "ethnic cleansing" or unnecessary prisoner torture, but we did raze cities to the ground, because at the time we had no real choice. We may need to tone down our sensitivity back down to WWII levels, because we may have no real choice today, either; the military effectiveness of our pinpoint strikes is undeniable, but the political effectiveness far less so.

As for it being an existential threat, no, this particular war in the Middle East is not a threat to our existence, today. But if Israel loses, and Europe folds like it’s already in the process of, it won’t be too long before we are in a fight with our existence at stake, not to mention all the innocents trampled in the meantime who don’t happen to live within our borders. Decades, not centuries. If we get to that point and we still insist in this new-found "proportionality" doctrine that popped up out of nowhere, then we’re going to be in a situation where we’re going to be nuked.

At which point we’ll almost certainly strike back in kind, all attempts at proportianality and humanity tossed out the window in a last ditch effort to dig us out of the hole we dug for 50 years.

That is the endgame, if the terrorists are allowed to win today, nuclear war, started by them regardless of "negotiations" or "diplomacy", probably at the earliest available opportunity. All you have to do is listen to them and believe what they are saying, seemingly again a novel concept. So maybe our existence isn’t directly threatened, but if we keep our current culture, we’re shockingly few steps away from it.

This is why my support for our actions in the ME has been almost unswerving in the past few years; no matter how risky, no matter how poorly done, no matter how badly things go over there, it’s all better than the inevitable result of doing nothing, 20-30 years down the road (and that timescale if we’re lucky and our intelligence is good and our enemies never get lucky).
 
Written By: Anonymous
URL: http://
http://www.ussliberty.org/
The Liberty incident McQ?
Oh, well, that clearly indicates that the current government of Israel and everything they do, and what not, should be weighed and kept in perspective of the attack on the Liberty nearly 40 years ago.

It’s a wonder we even talk to the Germans and Japanese governments!, after all, a mere 70 years ago we had just finished handing them their ass*es in a world war that THEY started!
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
We may need to tone down our sensitivity back down to WWII levels, because we may have no real choice today, either; the military effectiveness of our pinpoint strikes is undeniable, but the political effectiveness far less so.

This is what I don’t understand. Suppose we did this. Suppose we gave the green light to carpet bomb various regions. How would that help?

In WWII we were fighting against governments. The logic behind these bombing campaigns was that they would eventually force those governments to surrender. But we’re not fighting against governments now. We’re fighting against a group of extremists. Carpet bombing the areas where they hang out might kill some of them, but it won’t cause them to surrender. What it will do is radicalize the surrounding population which will in turn strengthen the terrorists base of support.

In other words, the Israeli/American policy of minimizing civilian casualties is not just a moral policy, it’s a strategic one. Doing anything else would be highly counterproductive.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
In WWII we were fighting against governments. The logic behind these bombing campaigns was that they would eventually force those governments to surrender. But we’re not fighting against governments now.
Hezbollah is part of the government of Lebannon.
It runs southern Lebannon - hotels, dry cleaners, restaurants, power, water.

If the State of North Dakota Air National Guard attacks Manitoba Canada tomorrow, how should the Canadians respond if the government in Washington throws up it’s hands and claims it has no control over North Dakota?

And if some State legislators from North Dakota proceed to hold meetings with Cuba, which is supplying the state with rockets to fire into Canada?

Canada should take what action?
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Sort of on a parallel path -
Does anyone recall the hullabuloo a some years back when the Disney movie Aladdin came out?
The opening song had a reference either to cutting off heads, or cutting off hands, but ’it’s home’.

Huge outcry about the ’cultural intolerance’ and ’stereotyping’, etc.

Hmmmmmmmmm. Guess it’d be okay these days then?
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Hezbollah is part of the government of Lebannon.
It runs southern Lebannon - hotels, dry cleaners, restaurants, power, water.

If the State of North Dakota Air National Guard attacks Manitoba Canada tomorrow, how should the Canadians respond if the government in Washington throws up it’s hands and claims it has no control over North Dakota?
That’s not a very good analogy, Looker. The U.S. government clearly has the power to keep North Dakota in check. There is no reason at all to think that the Lebanese government or military is capable of controlling Hezbollah.

Plus, my comment was more about the U.S. response to terrorism generally.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
This is what I don’t understand. Suppose we did this. Suppose we gave the green light to carpet bomb various regions. How would that help?

If all of Hezbollah is dead, they can’t mount an effective offensive campaign.
 
Written By: fyro
URL: http://
No, it’s a perfectly fine analogy - all I did was change the names of the players and the geography so it would be obvious that Lebannon’s answer doesn’t pass muster.

As to us carpetbombing various regions, we’re not exactly at a full scale war with anyone at the moment trying to totally destroy their war production capacity or demoralize their population. I fully believe if we feel the need to do that, something drastic will have happened and we’ll either have the world behind us, or we won’t be giving a flip what they think because we’ll be really p*ssed.

I do recall civilians in Baghdad during the run up to Gulf War remarking that they’d withstood Iranian bombardments, etc, not realizing that carpet bombing and a fully involved United States are orders of magnitude greater than what they thought the worst could be.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Anonymous Liberal, you’re distorting my point, then wondering why someone would think something so strange.

My point isn’t that we must commit random acts of brutality. My point is that we might need to move "caring more about the civilians more than enemy does" down below "winning the war and attaining reasonable security" on the priority list.

I know you’d much prefer to argue against the position that "’caring about civilians’ should not be a concern at all!", which is basically what you’ve been doing, but that’s not an adequate summary of my point. There’s a big difference between switching those two priorities between first and second place, and simply discarding caring about civilians entirely.

We’d like to think we can afford the caring, but the evidence is regrettably not swinging that way right now. We know we can win total war. It is yet to be established that we can win partial, restrained war. We can’t be held responsible for morality we can’t afford. That’s been the norm for a long time, and it may not have changed yet. It may, sadly, never change, because fundamentally destruction is so much easier than creation.
 
Written By: Anonymous
URL: http://
I realize Lebannon walks a fine line to keep their ’country’ together - on the other hand I submit they’re not ’together’ in the first place if what they really have is a terrorist state in the south that they have no control over.

Which is better, having Israel lay waste to the south of their country, or sending in whatever military force they have available to try and keep Hezbollah from carrying out attacks on Israel?
Who are Hezbollah more likely to shoot at? Lebanese or Israelis?
When elements of Hezbollah attack real Lebanese troops, what happens?

This could be their opportunity to break Syrian control over them once and for all, but are they taking it?

No, they’re letting the Israeli’s do the work they don’t dare do.

Everyone is talking about what Syria/Hezbollah/Israel needs to do.
They’re treating Lebannon like they should have no responsibility for any of this.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
"lob rockets targeting civilians and filled with ball bearings"

"missiles designed to maximize their civilian killing potential,"

It seems to me that any anti-personnel weapon would be designed to maximize the number of fragments created. Weapons are designed to create the largest number of casualties possible. I know we do it, so why is it so shocking that they do it? Cluster bombs, for example.
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
It seems to me that any anti-personnel weapon would be designed to maximize the number of fragments created. Weapons are designed to create the largest number of casualties possible. I know we do it, so why is it so shocking that they do it? Cluster bombs, for example.
I’m illustrating a point tim ... both cluster bombs and missiles filled with thousands of ball bearings are area dispersal weapons.

Wikipeida has this entry about this topic:
The Human Rights Watch said that "there is evidence that Israel has used cluster munitions in populated areas in Lebanon and that Hezbollah has launched rockets containing thousands of metal ball bearings towards Israeli towns and cities," and that neither should be used in or near civilian areas as a matter of international law.[135] "Meanwhile, the Israeli military has admitted it has been using cluster bombs."
And it is the use of cluster bombs we hear about constantly, even though they’re probably not using them now. Meanwhile, raining down on a northern Israeli town near the border ... silence in reporting. But we certainly are hearing all about those strange burns and wounds in Gaza, aren’t we?

Again, who does the propaganda war favor in this instance and why?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
If the shoe were on the other foot....

What do you think the U.N., and European response would be if tonight, the United States, crossed into Iran, and killed several Iranian soldiers....kidnapped a few more, and launched a dozen or so missiles into Tabriz?

What would their response be if Iran began an aerial assault on Baghdad because of it?

They’d say the Americans started it, and the Americans are resonsible for the death of 600 civilians in Baghdad!

And then....If we stsrted launching missiles into Iranian cities in retalliation to the aeirial bombardment, the U.N., and the Europeans would condemn us for targeting civilians in Iran!

Just WTF is wrong with this picture?

Are the U.N., and the Europeans so predgidice of Israelis, and the United States, that they are willingly turning a blind eye to Iran, and Syrias support of the terrorist regime of Hezzbollah?

You bet your ass they are! It shouldn’t surprise us at all to find that they are all in bed with Hezbollah.



 
Written By: RPCincinnati
URL: http://
AL,

You do seem to be arguing points people are not making. Look, I don’t think on the wisdom of creating enemies from carpet bombing, etc., people really disagree at this point. Given what the two of you have said, you and McQ seem to really be on the same page on the propaganda point.

I will however submit that your arguments on how humane we should be in fighting this enemy is fraught with problems. I say that as someone who fundamentally agrees with you, so I hate to see poor arguments damage valid points. Just for clarity’s sake, since I have no idea how long you have read this site, McQ and the guys have done extensive work here on the treatment of detainees in general, and torture specifically. So if you are under the impression that McQ is arguing against the fighting of wars in a humane a fashion as possible, you are very wrong. Search the site and you’ll find plenty of evidence to back it up.

I do think that Israel has in some ways fought this war in ways that work against its long term interests. I have commented to that effect on this very site. However, McQ’s point is still absolutely correct.
It’s not about what the Geneva conventions allow us to do. It’s about who we are as a country
I agree, as do the proprietors of this site from what I can see. If not, McQ will relish the opportunity to set me straight. However,
Somehow we made it through a couple world wars without resorting to torturing prisoners or stooping to the level of our enemies (i.e., ethnic cleansing, committing atrocities against captive populations, etc.).

Stooping to the level of our enemies no, but I haven’t heard anyone, nor the present administration argue that we should. Stooping a bit closer maybe, but nowhere close to their level. However the rest is just staggeringly wrong as a generality, and mostly as to the specific complaints as well. I’ll stick to WWII, but I can come up with a list for any conflict we have engaged in. I will also only use a select few allied incidents on the western front. We were far more brutal in the Pacific theater. I’ll ignore the Russians. I will also ignore the kinds of things brought up earlier such as nightime bombing raids, I will stick to well known incidents. This does not include all the less obvious summary executions, rapes, murders and torture which a thorough reading of wartime correspondence from soldiers chronicles. I will also not bring up details of the way combatants not in uniform were summarily executed, that is if they were lucky. Those are rarely considered atrocity’s, though by contemporary standards they certainly would be.

I’ll make a claim which I do not believe can be refuted. Neither we nor any other nation has ever fought a large scale war that in its totality was fought as humanely as this one. We have a right to keep this administrations feet to the fire to do even better, but these ahistorical claims about our conduct are begining to tire me. Remember, I have only scratched the surface of the issues that under contemporary standards would make us war criminals. Sadly, we and the Brits were the most humane participants, so we did not stoop to their level then either. The French were staggeringly barbaric. It is estimated that after the liberation well north of 40,000 frenchmen were murdered for various reasons by their fellow countrymen:
After the capture of the Remagen Bridge, the US Army hastily erected dozens of Prisoner of War cages around the bridge-head. The camps were simply open fields surrounded by concertina wire. Those at the Rhine Meadows were situated at Remagen, Bad Kreuznach, Andernach, Buderich, Rheinbach and Sinzig. The German prisoners were hopeful of good treatment from the GIs but in this they were sadly disappointed. Herded into the open spaces like cattle, some were beaten and mistreated. No tents or toilets were supplied. The camps became huge latrines, a sea of urine from one end to the other. They had to sleep in holes in the ground which they dug with their bare hands. In the Bad Kreuznach cage, 560,000 men were interned in an area that could only comfortably hold 45,000. Denied enough food and water, they were forced to eat the grass under their feet and the camps soon became a sea of mud. After the concentration camps were discovered, their treatment became worse as the GIs vented their rage on the hapless prisoners.

In the five camps around Bretzenheim, prisoners had to survive on 600-850 calories per day. With bloated bellies and teeth falling out, they died by the thousands. During the two and a half months (April-May, 1945) when the camps were under American control, a total of 18,100 prisoners died from malnutrition, disease and exposure. This extremely harsh treatment at the hands of the Americans resulted in the deaths of over 50,000 German prisoners of war in the Rhine Meadows camps alone in the months just before and after the war ended. It must however be borne in mind that with the best will in the world it proved almost impossible to care for such a huge number of prisoners under the strict terms of the Geneva Convention. The task of guarding these prisoners, numbering around 920,000, fell to the men of the US 106th. Infantry Division. The Remagen cage was set up to accommodate 100,000 men but ended up with twice that number. On the first afternoon 35,000 prisoners were counted through the gate. About 10,000 of these required urgent medical attention which in most cases was completely absent. All roads leading to the camps were clogged with hundreds of trucks bringing in even more prisoners, sent to the rear by the advancing 9th US Army. By April 15, 1945, 1.3 million prisoners were in American hands. At war’s end, 1,056,482 German prisoners were held in US camps in Europe, 692,895 were classified as prisoners of War and 365,587 classified as DEF’s (Disarmed Enemy Forces)

The standards set by the Geneva Convention were, in most cases, totally ignored by the Americans and French in relation to their treatment of German prisoners-of-war. The French deliberately starved many of their POWs in order to force them to join the French Foreign Legion. Thousands of Legionaires who fought in the Vietnam conflict were Germans, handed over by the Americans to the French in 1945/46 to work as slave labourers in the rebuilding of France’s war damaged cities. Conditions in the French camps were just as bad if not worse than in the American camps. It is estimated that at least 167,000 German soldiers died in French captivity between 1945 and 1948.
The Dachau Concentration Camp, near Munich, was liberated by US forces on the 29th. of April, 1945. First to enter the camp and confront the horror within was Private First Class John Degro, the lead scout of Company 1, 3rd. Battalion, 157 Infantry Regiment, 45th Division of the US 7th Army. Prior to entering the camp, the troops had come upon a train of thirty nine cattle trucks parked just outside the camp. The train had come from Auschwitz in Poland after a journey of thirty days. The trucks were filled with the corpses of 2,310 Hungarian and Polish Jews who had died from hunger and thirst. Enraged, the Americans rounded up most of the SS guard complement of 560 men, hundreds of whom had already deserted. Included in the round-up was a detachment from the 5th SS Panzer ’Viking’ Division sent to Dachau earlier to maintain security and replace those who had deserted. Guarded by angry GIs, one group of guards were lined up against a wall to await the appearance of their commander, SS Obersturmfüher Heindrich Skodzensky.

When he appeared, dressed immaculately with polished boots, and giving the military salute, which was ignored by the US company commander, Lt. William Jackson, who ordered "Line this piece of s**t up with the rest of ’em over there". The GIs lost control and began shouting ’Kill em, kill em’. Filled with murderous rage and with tears streaming down his face, one GI of the 15th Infantry Regiment, opened fire with his machine-gun. After three bursts of raking fire, a total of 122 SS men lay dead or dying along the base of the wall. A few of the camp inmates, dressed in the familiar striped clothing and armed with .45 caliber pistols, then walked along the line of dead and dying guards and administrated the coup de grace to those still alive. Forty other guards were killed by revengeful inmates, some having their arms and legs torn apart. At another site near the SS hospital, hundreds of German guards were machine gunned to death on the orders of the executive officer of Company 1, 3rd Battalion. Altogether, a total of 520 persons, acting as camp and tower guards, including many Hungarians in German uniforms and recently returned from the Eastern Front, were killed that day. The sad fact is that many of these guards were new arrivals at the camp and were not the real culprits, the truly guilty had already fled.
On the same day that the Dachau Concentration Camp was discovered, a massacre took place in the little hamlet of Webling about ten kilometres from the camp. A Waffen-SS unit had arrived at the hamlet, which consisted of about half a dozen farm houses, barns and the Chapel of St. Leonhard, to take up defensive positions in trenches dug around the farms by French P.O.W. workers. Their orders were to delay the advance of American tanks of the 20th Armoured Division and infantry units of the 7th. US Army which was approaching Dachau. The farms, mostly run by women (whose husbands were either dead, prisoners of war or still fighting) with the help of French P.O.W.s, came under fire on the morning of 29th.April causing all inhabitants to rush for the cellars. One soldier of Company F of the US 222nd Infantry Regiment of the 42nd Rainbow Division, was killed as they entered the hamlet under fire from the Waffen-SS unit. The first German to emerge from the cellar was the owner of the farm, Herr Furtmayer. He was promptly shot dead. Informed by the French POWs that only civilians, not SS, were in hiding in the cellers, the GIs proceeded to round up the men of the SS unit. First to surrender was an officer, Freiherr von Truchsess, heading a detachment of seventeen men. The officer was immediately struck with a trenching tool splitting his head open. The other seventeen were lined up in the farmyard and shot. On a slight rise behind the hamlet, another group of eight SS were shot. Their bodies were found lying in a straight line with their weapons and ammunition belts neatly laid on the ground. This would suggest that the men were shot after they surrendered. Altogether, one SS officer and forty one men lay dead as the infantry regiment proceeded on their way towards Dachau. Next day the local people, with the help of the French POWs, buried the bodies in a field to be later exhumed by the German War Graves Commission and returned to their families.
A week after the discovery of the Belsen Concentration Camp, a rumour reached the British Army’s ’Desert Rats’ that the 18th SS Training Regiment of the Hitler Jugend Division, had shot their prisoners at the nearby village of Rather. The ’Rats’ were engaged in a fierce battle with the SS defenders in the village of Nahrendorf. Slowly, and in groups, the SS began to surrender. As the noise of battle died away the villagers emerged from their cellars and found the bodies of 42 SS soldiers lying in a shallow grave. The bodies were then interned on a hilltop cemetery near the village. Each year, hundreds of SS veterans visit the cemetery to pay tribute to their fallen comrades whom, they say, were shot in cold blood on the orders of a ‘crazed blood-thirsty British NCO’.

Monte Cassino fell to the Allies on May 18, 1944. After a four month struggle and the abbey bombed into ruins by the US Air Force, Polish troops of the 12th Lancers, 3rd Carpathian Division, raised their regimental flag over the ruins of the 6th century Benedictine Monastery situated high in the Apennines of central Italy. The next night thousands of French Moroccan, Algerian, Tunisian and Senegalese troops, attached to the French Expeditionary Corps, swarmed over the slopes of the hills surrounding Monte Cassino and in the small village of Ciociaria, raped every woman and girl that came within their sight. Over 2,000 women, ranging in age from 11 years to 86 years suffered at the hands of these gang-raping soldiers as village after village was entered. Menfolk who tried to protect their wives and daughters were murdered without mercy, around 800 of them died. Two sisters aged 15 and 18 were raped by dozens of soldiers each. One died from the abuse, the other was still in a mental hospital in 1997, 53 years after the event. Most of the dwellings in the villages were destroyed and everything of value was stolen. Later in the war, these same troops raped around 500 women in the Black Forrest town of Freudenstadt, on April 17, 1945, after its capture. In Stuttgart, colonial French troops, mostly African, but under the command of General Eisenhower, rounded up around 2,000 women and herded them into the underground subways to be raped. In one week more women were raped in Stuttgart than in the whole of France during the four year German occupation.
Many massacres of prisoners of war were committed by units of the American 45th (Thunderbird) Division during the invasion of Sicily in 1943. At Comise airfield, a truck load of German prisoners were machine-gunned as they climbed down on to the tarmac, prior to be air-lifted out. Later the same day, 60 Italian prisoners were cut down the same way. On July 14, thirty six prisoners were gunned down near Gela by their guard, US Sergeant Barry West. At Buttera airfield, US Captain Jerry Compton, lined up his 43 prisoners against a wall and machine-gunned them to death. West and Compton were both arrested and convicted of murder. They were later sent to the front where both were killed in action. Both had claimed that they were only following orders and quoted General Paton’s speech to them earlier, "When we land against the enemy, don’t forget to hit him and hit him hard. When we meet the enemy we will kill him. We will show him no mercy. He has killed thousands of your comrades and he must die". On April 29, 1945, units of the 45th Division liberated the concentration camp of Dachau where more atrocities were committed.

Allied troops, as well as Axis troops, committed terrible atrocities during the war. Some years after the war a mass grave was discovered just west of the city of Nuremberg. In it were the bodies of some 200 SS soldiers. It was not until 1976 that one of the bodies was positively identified. It was the body of SS Hauptsturmfuhrer Kukula the commander of the 1st Battalion, 38th SS Panzer Grenadier Regiment. Autopsies on the other bodies showed that most had been shot at close range, the others beaten to death by the rifle butts of the US Seventh Army GIs. In the village of Eberstetten, 17 German soldiers of the ’Gotz von Berlichingen’ Division were shot after they surrendered to US troops.

On April 8, 1945, fourteen members of the 116th Panzer Division were marched through the streets of Budberg to the command post of the US 95th Infantry Division. There, they were lined up and shot. Three were wounded but managed to escape.

On April 13, 1945, tanks of the US 97th or 78th Infantry Division were approaching the village of Spitze, about fifteen miles east of Cologne. They came under fire from a 8.8 anti-tank gun which disabled one of the tanks. That night, the village was pounded by tank and artillery fire and at daybreak the US forces entered the village. All the inhabitants, about eighty, were gathered together in front of the church. Included in the eighty were twenty German soldiers, members of an anti-aircraft unit stationed in the village. They were separated from the civilians and marched several hundred yards to a field just outside the village. There, they were lined up and mowed down by machine-gun fire. Next day the US Army ordered the civilians to dig graves and bury the dead. On April 14, 1995, a memorial for the twenty victims was built near the spot.

During the Allied assault on Sicily, the largest of the Mediterranean islands, (July, 1943) about a dozen unarmed civilians, including some children, were apprehended by US troops after the town of Canicatti surrendered. The civilians were reported to be looting after they had entered a bombed out soap and food factory and were filling buckets with liquid soap that had spilled on the ground. At around 6pm, when an American officer, a lieutenant-colonel, and a group Military Police, accompanied by three interpreters, entered the factory the officer fired a series of shots from his automatic Colt-45 point blank into the crowd. He reloaded and fired again. Eight of the civilians, including an eleven year old girl, died. The officer and soldiers then drove off. Fearing reprisals from the residents of the town, the incident was hushed up for over sixty years. Due to the efforts of Dr. Joseph S. Salemi of New York University, this atrocity was brought to light. The perpetrator of this crime, Lieutenant Colonel McCaffery, died in 1954.
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://www.asecondhandconjecture.com
Lance,

Next time just create a link....geesh....
 
Written By: RPCincinnati
URL: http://
RPC,

A bunch of stuff to pull out. Most of it is mixed in with acres of axis atrocities. I figured most people don’t have the time. If it bothers you I apologize.
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://www.asecondhandconjecture.com
It’s amazing how much more real debate there is in Israel than here.
After the succcess of the security fence and the election of Hamas, the left in Israel became marginalized.

I used WWII advisedly; today, that war would be condemned for any number of reasons. We didn’t engage in "ethnic cleansing" or unnecessary prisoner torture, . . .

We tortured German prisoner at Nuremburg after the war. Real torture, not what we have seen at Gitmo, etc. Physical torture, and also threats of taking away the food cards of loved ones (which would likely result of starved children or wives forced into prostitution). Furthermore, this torture was intended to obtain confessions, not intelligence info in an ongoing war.
Who exactly is okay with terrorists cutting off heads and lobbing bombs into civilian areas? No one is.
http://www.zombietime.com/sf_rally_april_10_2004/

http://www.zombietime.com/churchill_in_bay_area/

 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
If anyone doubts the terrorists are winning the public relations war, these reports and the turning of world opinion against Israel should begin to make that clear
This is funny because it implies that at some point, public opinion and the PR game was actually in favorf of Israel.

Sorry pal, that hasn’t happened for a looooooooooooooooooooooooooooong time - as people like cindyb and MKKK demonstrate
 
Written By: Shark
URL: http://
People go bonkers because Israel seems to be making an already highly volatile situation worse
Sweet creeping Jesus on a unicorn.

Yet another entry in the "Israel should sit there and take it up the a$$" brigade.

 
Written By: Shark
URL: http://
Look, international terrorism is a serious threat, but it’s hardly the existential threat you make it out to be, especially for the U.S. Even under the worst case scenario, our sovereignty is not at risk. But if we allow ourselves to stoop to the level of our barbarian enemies, everything that makes this country what it is will be lost. I know that sounds cliche, but it’s true. Al Qaeda will never "beat" us. But we might beat ourselves if we follow your advice
Depends on what you mean by "existential". If by that you mean, they can’t conquer territory and raise their flag, you are correct. Seeing that large segments of this country were intimidated by terrorism into censoring the Mohammad cartoons, I’d daresay that they surely pose an existential threat- just on a more subtle level.

As for this Ivory Tower highbrow sh*t you peddle- as noted above, war su*cks, losing one is ever worse.

It’s a sad fact but sometimes even the freeest, most virtuous societies have to get down in the mud to defeat their enemies. In fact, seeing that evil generally mistakes good societies for being weak, that willingness to bring the hardcore nasty and "sink to their level" is essential.

 
Written By: Shark
URL: http://
Just for clarity’s sake, since I have no idea how long you have read this site, McQ and the guys have done extensive work here on the treatment of detainees in general, and torture specifically. So if you are under the impression that McQ is arguing against the fighting of wars in a humane a fashion as possible, you are very wrong. Search the site and you’ll find plenty of evidence to back it up.
I appreciate that, and for the record, most of my comments, at least down the thread, weren’t directed at McQ but at other commenters (like Shark). As tends to happen, the discussion got somewhat sidetracked from McQ’s original point.

For what it’s worth, though I disagree with a lot of them, I’ve been impressed so far with the civility and substance of the comments here.
 
Written By: Anonymous Liberal
URL: http://www.anonymousliberal.com
"... both cluster bombs and missiles filled with thousands of ball bearings are area dispersal weapons.

Yes, but neither are "designed to maximize their civilian killing potential." Why do you use the word "civilian"? Perhaps I am missing your point.

"Meanwhile, raining down on a northern Israeli town near the border ... silence in reporting"

I have no problem finding reporting about the rocket attacks on several television stations. On Fox, for example, it is difficult to avoid. I think I even heard reporting of the effects of the rocket attacks on my local PBS radio station.

"But we certainly are hearing all about those strange burns and wounds in Gaza, aren’t we?"

The only place I hear about it is here, but I confess that I do not read/view a large number of news outlets, certainly not the Sydney Morning Herald.




 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Lance

I was aware of some such incidents, and assumed there were more. I have long suspected that reluctance to surrender was due at least partially to the realization by the combatants of the, uh, problematic nature of surrendering rather than an abundance of zeal and martial ardor. Could you provide a source so that I may satisfy my curiosity?
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Anonymous - We are engaged in an experiment to see if we are so powerful that we can extend humanity to our opponents, even when they refuse to restrain themselves. However, if it turns out we can’t, then our choices will be to get "nasty" or get defeated (no scarequotes). The latter means immediate extinction for Israel, and delayed extinction for the US (but extinction nonetheless).

If our unprecedented experiment with unreciprocated humanity fails, we’ll have no choice but "stoop" to using the old, primitive, yet proven-effective tactics of old, and our morality will be superior for having at least tried first. Winning that way by necessity will be no more immoral than having won WWI or WWII.
Thats pretty astute long range thinking, Anonymous. Like you, probably, I don’t HOPE that the experiment in one-way humanity fails. But it is refreshing to see someone openly defy the "human rights" folks that say that enemy rights and liberties are absolute and must be never compromised even if the enemy kills us all or beats us so badly we enter into a semi-slavery to the Muslims known as Dhimmitude - which plays out like being black under Jim Crow.

I believe the original premise was by both the liberals, Euros, and Bush - that Islam is the Religion of Peace with the vast preponderance of Muslims Just Like Us, and Moderate, to boot. And if we did not bend over backwards to please them, we would only drive them into the infintesemal minority which has "hijacked" their noble faith. And above all, we could never be allowed to kill any "innocent Jihadi suporters" not actually carrying a gun, just cheering the Jihadis on. Because they were Civilians, and their lives were more sacred than any number of American soldiers dying in consequence of "Saving the Enemy Civilians At All Costs". The Jewish Left and the Jewish attorneys of the ACLU/Lawyers Guild/Southern Poverty Law Center/their academia centers organized in the old Jewish Marxist days were mobilized to zealously defend captured unlawful combatants, and demand severe punishment for the slightest US GI transgressions - as Key to American civilization. And the media and Congress has spent more time on the issue of enemy rights and enemy trials - than in inquiry into who the enemy is and how they can be defeated.

I know that the cost if we had stopped at beating the Iraqis and knocking Saddam out of power and left, was 147 lives, under 1,000 net casualties and 90 billion. Nation building, for the "noble, democracy-loving" Iraqis, has cost us 700 billion total inc. the 90 billion conventional victory - and 18,500 casualties.

It appears to have been a colossal Bush/neocon/Sharansky/Euroweenie mistake to think democracy and nation-building would make Iraq’s transformation and recovery to an enlightened democracy a "cakewalk". It was also a colossal failure of imagination and understanding of the realities of the ME on the part of the Left, liberal Democrats, and secular Jews who believed that being super-nice to the enemy, taking their side against the West, and justifying their every atrocity as the West or Bush’s personal fault - would make them love us. It - the strategic vision of the Bushies or the ACLU or the NYTimes or the Euroweenies - failed to moderate the Iraqi Islamoids.

Just as the 10s of billion in global aid from US, Euros, and Gulf states, political championing, and scruptulous care and paeons to the humanity of the "noble Palestinian people" has failed to block them from becoming even more murderous, nihilistic, and radical Islamist. The one-sided respect for the "humanity" of the enemy has appeared to be about as fruitful as the groveling "tolerance and PC" which Euros and Canadians extended to their Muslim immigrants - only to be shocked, just shocked, to learn how widespread hatred and support of violence against "infidel natives" is.

Anonymous makes his second post similarly valuable.....
We’d like to think we can afford the caring, but the evidence is regrettably not swinging that way right now. We know we can win total war. It is yet to be established that we can win partial, restrained war. We can’t be held responsible for morality we can’t afford.
We had to try, but if the expensive on lives and US treasure approach doesn’t work, if Islamofascists reject the sacrifice our politicans and officers are doing - of thousands of US soldiers blasted and maimed - simply to spare enemy civilians - as stupid and weak of us, and continue to attrit our guys with full support of townsfolk in Haditha, Ramadi, Tikrit, Fallujah..at least we tried. If they continue to target and kill infidel civilians without compunction....at least we tried. At least we gave the Leftys, Jewish activist lawyers, and liberal Democrats THEIR SHOT at a solution.

Then, especially if Islamofascism continues to grow, and another 9/11 magnitude or greater scale attack happens, god forbid even a WMD one - we can depose the Leftys, the ACLU, liberal Democrats and go with Anonymous’s option that we can’t afford the unreciprocated "higher" morality and cosseting we gave the enemy, and conclude partial restrained war doesn’t work on Jihadis. But we do know that going Mongol or Reconquista on them makes them non-violent for centuries afterwards, so too does ethnic cleansing.....
 
Written By: C. Ford
URL: http://
For what it’s worth, though I disagree with a lot of them, I’ve been impressed so far with the civility and substance of the comments here.
Well, for the most part, the commenters here are a very good and thoughtful bunch who welcome the opportunity to duke it out in the arena of ideas in a civil and respectful way. that’s not to say it doesn’t get heated or an ad hominem isn’t known to fly occasionally, but thankfully, they’re the exception and not the rule.

And you’re a welcome addition.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Yes, but neither are "designed to maximize their civilian killing potential." Why do you use the word "civilian"? Perhaps I am missing your point.
Name a single Israeli military target (base, etc) Hezbollah has targeted with their missiles.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Timactual,

If you Google a bit you can find a lot of stuff. The particular excerpts I used came from here. I can’t say I have verified all of it, I was trying to make a point, not write a thesis, but whatever flaws it might have, by contemporary standards we cannot say we behaved well. Of course, as you research this stuff, realize that the subject is of far more interest to cranks, anti-semites and all kinds of other people who have agendas you might not appreciate than to people who are sympathetic to the allies or the US. The site seems to have no such ax to grind.

I should make it clear that I am glad we are trying to do better, I am glad for the substance of much of the criticism of this administration. I just believe the criticism is delivered from a view of our own and others past behavior that is incredibly wrong. That leads to hysterical claims about the special nature of this administrations behavior.

We should hold ourselves to higher standards, and this administration as well. However, in terms of civil liberties, treatment of enemies, sensitivity to wars impact on civilians and any other metric on these types of issues this administration finishes at the top. History may have set a low bar, but Bush should at least be credited with jumping over it.
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://www.asecondhandconjecture.com
"Name a single Israeli military target (base, etc) Hezbollah has targeted with their missiles.’

My point is that it is inaccurate to say that the rockets were DESIGNED specifically to maximize CIVILIAN casualties, not what the actual targets are.
Nitpicking, perhaps, but it struck me as an uncharacteristic(and unnecessary) attempt to demonize Hezbollah(not that they aren’t demons, I hasten to add).


" the subject is of far more interest to cranks, anti-semites and all kinds of other people who have agendas you might not appreciate than to people who are sympathetic to the allies or the US. The site seems to have no such ax to grind"

Eek! Am I that transparent? Seriously, though, I know what you mean. On the other hand, I have seen people become just as wacky when it is suggested that our boys were not paragons of virtue and propriety. You can almost hear the minds slam shut. Every once in a while I visit certain websites just to remind myself of what is out there, and to check my own response. So far my subjective opinion is that I am a safe distance from the fringes. Thanks.

"I should make it clear..."

Yep, I’ll bet you use that disclaimer a lot when dealing with this type of material. It does save time and energy. Gives you a real understanding of the phrase "don’t shoot the messenger".
 
Written By: timactual
URL: http://
Nitpicking, perhaps, but it struck me as an uncharacteristic(and unnecessary) attempt to demonize Hezbollah(not that they aren’t demons, I hasten to add).
We are talking about the group that straps bombs on their own (and women and children) and has them detonate them on civilian buses in crowded civilian markets and civilian pizza parlors, correct?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
My point is that it is inaccurate to say that the rockets were DESIGNED specifically to maximize CIVILIAN casualties, not what the actual targets are.
One more thing ... rockets were designed to deliver the warhead. The warhead was designed to maximize civilian casualties (unless you can point me to anyone else using thousands of ball bearings in their warheads). ;)
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/blog
Tim,
Eek! Am I that transparent?
No. It hadn’t occurred to me that you were a crank or trying to smoke me out, thugh both possibilities should have occurred to me.
"I should make it clear..."
Yep, I’ll bet you use that disclaimer a lot when dealing with this type of material. It does save time and energy. Gives you a real understanding of the phrase "don’t shoot the messenger".
That is certainly true. Especially on unpleasant topics some of the research is inevitably carried out by some real whackjobs and has to be approached carefully. On this subject you inevitably end up with neo-nazis and other strange beings if you hit Google. Doesn’t mean the information isn’t true, but how do you know?
 
Written By: Lance
URL: http://www.asecondhandconjecture.com
One more thing ... rockets were designed to deliver the warhead. The warhead was designed to maximize civilian casualties (unless you can point me to anyone else using thousands of ball bearings in their warheads). ;)

Written By: McQ
Every military has launched or rocket artillery that dispenses ball bearings. That has been the case ever since Henry Shrapnel of Britain discovered iron balls in artillery shells retained the best combo of mass&velocity in an explosion and maximized killing radius in an explosion. That was back in the Napoleonic Wars.

http://forums.military.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/409192893/m/6990092970001

The Zionist propaganda about a new, frightening weapon is just rubbish. 122mm Katyushas come with HE, AP, and anti-personnel (ball bearing laden)warheads. So do American and Israeli aircraft-delivered cluster bombs. It’s not the weapon design that "maximizes civilian casualties" it’s what the force uses any weapon for that determines if it "maximizes military or civilian casualties". 122mm warheads can be modified from HE to anti-personnel and vice-versa.

The Russians got "little Katie" from a German design. A salvo of rockets could completely straddle a target at 5,500 meters or less. Initially the Soviet Artillery was not fond of the Katyusha, because it took up to 50 minutes to load and fire 24 rounds. A conventional howitzer could fire 95 to 150 rounds at the same time. Two things changed their minds:

A. They proved incredibly effective in their German counterpart’s use as a demoralizing shock weapon in Bitzkrieg, and the Soviets themselves found them invaluable in blunting offensives and in giving saturation artillery coverage and destruction of a mobile formation. Regular artillery was best against fixed positions. And, unlike field pieces, there was no effective counterbattery fire against Little Katies.

B. They were dirt-cheap to make. And they could be made just about anywhere at any metalworks factory, in mass quantities.

Every modern military has it’s version of MLRS. America’s is considered the most accurate and lethal. Each American rocket, from a pod of 12 per launcher, 9 launchers per battery - dispenses 677 submunitions that fire tiny AP and soldier-piercing "nails", ball bearings. Next to B-52 saturation bombing, and the Apache, it killed more Iraqis than any other US weapons system in the Gulf War. If Iran gives them the "good stuff" Hezbollah would soon be firing the Katyusha variant warheads that dispense 55 submunitions.
 
Written By: C. Ford
URL: http://
I read an AFP report on the war today that did not mention the ambush and capture incident which started the war. They did say that Nasrallah declared total war after his house had been bombed. Gee, thanks.

Israel managed to get 500,000 people into air-raid shelters. We should expect the same from Hezbullah. If they have money for missiles, they can build their civil defense structures.

I think the No. 1 problem is the lack of any understanding of military issues in the press or the guy on the street. I couldn’t believe when people are wondering why the airport and seaports were attacked. Uhhhhh, I guess Hezbullah has their own private airbase, right, and the Israelis just want to be mean to some tourists.

By the same token, though, I cannot really blame Hezbullah for not having access to PGM...like the Americans, they have to fight the war with the army you brung...and theirs doens’t include smart bombs or GPS bombs.
 
Written By: Harun
URL: http://

 
Add Your Comment
  NOTICE: While we don't wish to censor your thoughts, we do blacklist certain terms of profanity or obscenity. This is not to muzzle you, but to ensure that the blog remains work-safe for our readers. If you wish to use profanity, simply insert asterisks (*) where the vowels usually go. Your meaning will still be clear, but our readers will be able to view the blog without worrying that content monitoring will get them in trouble when reading it.
Comments for this entry are closed.
Name:
Email:
URL:
HTML Tools:
Bold Italic Blockquote Hyperlink
Comment:
   
 
Vicious Capitalism

Divider

Buy Dale's Book!
Slackernomics by Dale Franks

Divider

Divider