Democrats & Liberals Archives

Bring Back from Brink

The Middle East is on the brink of a big war again. Two terrorist organizations, Hamas and Hezballah, started it and Israel took the bait and escalated hostilities. War is raging in Gaza and in Lebanon. Nations are taking sides, but it is up to the U.S. to stop being an observer and start doing something to bring the warring parties back from the brink.

I find it amazing that American pundits keep faulting Israel for its hyperactive response rather than Hamas and Hezballah who initially attacked. I find it even more amazing that our president and his secretary of state are saying essentially nothing. The same administration that brought the "war on terror" to Iraq is tongue-tied in the face of terror against Israel.

For 5 years the Bush administration has used a hands-off policy towards the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It assumed that by developing a beachhead in Iraq it would be able to influence the entire Middle East, including this frustrating and exasperating conflict. As it turns out, the Iraq War has benefited primarily Iran. Iran is now the greatest power in the Middle East, with or without nuclear weapons. Furthermore, Iran is the power behind Hezballah.

Whether we like it or not, Iran must be reckoned with if we want to stop the violence. It's ridiculous to start a war with Iran, a war that may bring much bloodshed and produce a slew of terrorists. U.S. must talk to Iran to produce peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Such conversations have the potential of turning the Middle East into a region of tolerance, prosperity and peace.

The big problem we are faced with is terrorism. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been marked by terrorism from the beginning. The Palestinians, feeling themselves to be without good weapons, depended more and more upon suicide bombers and the killing of civilians. Osama bin Laden took the idea and expanded upon it, using technology to kill more people. Now the word is spreading among some Muslims, that the killing of civilians, as long as they are not Muslims, is OK.

It appears, then, that Hamas, Hezballah and other terrorist groups were the forerunners of Al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations around the globe. This means that if the Israeli-Palestinian conflict were settled, Muslims would no longer bash Israel or America, and would return to their peaceful pursuits. There would then follow a powerful backlash against terrorism.

Only U.S. can accomplish this. But it can not do this without the aid of Iran. Therefore, U.S. must work together with Iran to co-host a conference of Middle East nations to bring them back from the brink. The conference should stay in session for as long as it takes to settle terrorism issues as well as economic and security issues for the entire region.

Posted by Paul Siegel at July 14, 2006 6:08 PM
Comments
Comment #167611

Paul, you are sounding like a world cop Republican after Bush’s own heart. Why must the USA intervene to bring them back from a war that has always been inevitable and which must be fought in earnest before peace can be achieved.

I am an ardent believer in peaceful means as opposed to violent means. But, not even Mahatma Gandhi would be able to effect resolution in this crisis. I believe Condi will exert all of the diplomatic pressure she can muster to bring the Israelis back from an all out invasion of Gaza and Lebanon, which would not be in our own self interest, given the energy consequences.

But, what else can the U.S. realistically do when we refuse to recognize Hezelloah legitimacy, and haven’t the faintest clue as to how to bridge the Shiite - Sunni gulf in Iraq? I am a firm believer that the less involved Bush is in foreign affairs, the better off we and the rest of the world are. Let’s give Bush a pass on this one, he is not up to it.

Condi Rice is the best the White House has, let her do her thing, and leave Bush alone to fret over his legacy. he’s got enough on his plate. Where is your compassion?

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 14, 2006 6:23 PM
Comment #167615

Paul,
We are so far down this road that I do not see any hope. We have “stayed the course” with US foreign policy in the Middle East. Now, here we are. The Bush policies have been a complete disaster. Syria withdrew from Lebanon. Democracy in Lebanon, the so-called Cedar Revolution, has empowered Hezbollah as a political party. Israel has invaded Lebanon, killed dozens of innocent civilians, bombed highways and the main airport; and Hezbollah has launched hundreds of missiles into Israel. And what can we say about the democratic election of Hamas? The Bantustan of Gaza? The invasion of a pretend country with grossly disproportionate force?

US policy has chosen to back Israel. Period. It is not “hands-off.” The Neocons constructed US foreign policy with Israel in mind, and perhaps they have even placed Israeli national security concerns over US concerns.

Terrorism? Both sides have been committing atrocities since 1948. The previous leader of Israel, Ariel Sharon, led a massacre of dozens of Arabs back then, and the previous Palestinian leader, Arafat, was no better back in 1972.

Really, Paul, I am just disgusted. In practical terms, we will need to wait for a new administration. In the meantime, we will just have to watch the civil war in Iraq continue unfolding, and Iran continuing to respond to American disrespect with more provocations.

Gross incompetence by the Bush administration. We have no business supporting religious states, whether Islamic, Jewish, or Christian. I do not like to think what the next two years of ineptitude will bring.

Posted by: phx8 at July 14, 2006 6:35 PM
Comment #167617

Paul, I believe it is an unconscionable tragedy, that a nation which was sundered and poisoned by a bitter civil war, upon pulling itself from the mire and becoming once more a signpost for a more moderate mid east, is now being pounded savagely, its civilians being slaughtered and its infrastructure being torn down. Did Hizbullah start this? Of course they did. Was what they did wrong? Yes, I believe it was, just as I believe it was wrong for Israel to invade Lebanon and take Lebanese prisoners who still reside in Israeli jails.

Israel can only yield a bitter harvest from this madness. A county which was coming along nicely after its recent tragedy, is being driven into the embrace of Hizbullah and extremism. Tonight I heard Ehud Olmert interviewed in BBC decry failure to implement UN resolutions regarding taking control of border areas by the Lebanese. How hollow that rings given Israels deafness to other UN resolutions with regard to itself. Israeli policy for too long has been predicated on an imperialistic land grab partnered by a policy of treating the Palestinians as vermin. It has done so because there is no one to challenge them militarily in the region. Its military strenght is underwritten by the US, which is standing on the sidelines with its hands in its pockets. This is exactly the kind of action that fills the quotas of the extemist recruiters. You cannot bring peace by sowing bitterness. I despair of seeing peace in this blighted land and curse such hubristic stupidity. Israel thinks it will destroy Hizbullah, just as it thought many times before. Isn’t it an Americanism that doing the same thing, and expecting a different result is a definition of insanity?

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 6:44 PM
Comment #167621

Apologies, I’m getting my Ehud’s mixed up. It was actually Ehud Barak interviewed on the BBC.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 6:50 PM
Comment #167622

Peace conference? Yeah, that’ll work…..

Posted by: nikkolai at July 14, 2006 6:54 PM
Comment #167623

Israel has been fighting terrorist since it became a country. The US has been telling them to don’t do anything bad when terrorist strike them, talk and work things out.
On 9/11 when the US was attacked, what did we do, went to Afganistan and went after Osama, which we should have done, but then Bush with big head, sent us into Iraq for WMD that weren’t there, and into another Nam.
Well now Israel was attacked again, so they decided to take charge and go after the Hamas and Hezbellah. All I can say is Good for them.

Posted by: KT at July 14, 2006 6:57 PM
Comment #167626

KT, do you know anything at all about the history of Israel? Most of its founders were described as terrorists, and were involved in brutal acts of vicious slaughter. The funny thing is, all over the world, those previously regarded as terrorists, later became national leaders, some of them even internationally respected. Can you seriously believe that Israels’ treatment of the Palestinians, and its savage response in Lebanon, is in any way short of terrorism? Are you aware that Israel comatose former Prime Minister sat on his hands while his proxies slaughtered civilians in Sabra and Chatila? Behaviour for which he was censured severely by an Israeli inquiry committee and described as being unfit for public office? Before you offer up your two cents, shouldn’t you pick up a passing familiarity with the facts? Ever heard of Jaffa Gate? Of Deir Yassin? King David hotel?

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 7:08 PM
Comment #167628

Yes Paul, I know history, and here in the US, the founder of this country were called terrorist at the beginning of our fight against the UK.
Also if you don’t like my two cents, so be it. Here there is a freedom called Free Speech. If you don’t like what I say, don’t listen(read)it.

Posted by: KT at July 14, 2006 7:13 PM
Comment #167629

In all actuality Isreal is a very peaceful nation and just wants to be left alone. When they get attacked they strike back with a vengence.

Posted by: KAP at July 14, 2006 7:15 PM
Comment #167631

Here is an account of the Qibya massacre, led by Ariel Sharon:

Israeli historian Avi Shlaim describes the massacre thus: “Sharon’s order was to penetrate Qibya, blow up houses and inflict heavy casualties on its inhabitants. His success in carrying out the order surpassed all expectations. The full and macabre story of what happened at Qibya was
revealed only during the morning after the attack. The village had been reduced to rubble: forty-five houses had been blown up, and sixty-nine civilians, two thirds of them women and children, had been killed. Sharon and his men claimed that they believed that all the inhabitants had run away and that they had no idea that anyone was hiding inside the houses.”

The UN observer on the scene reached a different conclusion: “One story was repeated time after time: the bullet splintered door, the body sprawled across the threshhold, indicating that the inhabitants had been forced by heavy fire to stay inside until their homes were blown up over them.”

http://www.counterpunch.org/sharon.html

Each side has a long history of committing atrocity. The US has no business helping one or the other. Any moral high ground held by the sufferers of the Holocaust was slowly but surely squandered by Zionism.

Posted by: phx8 at July 14, 2006 7:17 PM
Comment #167635

It may surprise you to know KT, that freedom of speech is not exclusive to the US. Indeed, to borrow a phrase attributed to Voltaire, I may abhor what you say, but I will defend with my life, your right to say it. You say you know history, yet your attitude bertays none of the subtlety of mind such knowledge usually displays.

As for KAP, of course Israel is a peaceful nation that just wants to be left alone - left alone to steal the land of its neighbours and treat them worse than cattle. And because of this, the whole world is threatened with terrorism from the whirlwind.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 7:26 PM
Comment #167640

Paul
Isreal didn’t strike the first blow. But I can almost guarantee you they will strike the last blow. Isreal is not the terrorist state in the region.

Posted by: KAP at July 14, 2006 7:45 PM
Comment #167642

Paul..Euro. Sorry but you need to learn your facts. Do you really think that Iseral should listen to you Cowards in Europe. I mean you people let Hitler Kill six million Jews! Good thing the U.S.A was there to bail your asses out! Mister Hitler why cant we all get along?

Posted by: teampdz at July 14, 2006 7:50 PM
Comment #167645

Coonyjay, I’m a little confused here? Are you a spokesman(woman?) for Al Queda, Hamas or Hizbullah? If not, why are you parroting their rationale and paradigm?

As for WWII, just who are you suggesting treated civilians as part of the enemy forces? OK, the British bombed German cities, particularly Dresden in a firestorm which became a holocaust killing countless citizens. The Nazi blitz on London and the British bomber command campaign against cities did not break the will of the people. And the allied forces did not kill citizens indiscriminately, careless of whether they were combatants. Where did you get that fantasy from?

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 7:54 PM
Comment #167647

You are a blind man, Euro-boy. Your eyes will be opened. Oh yes, the time is coming…
Posted by: coonyjay at July 14, 2006 07:49 PM

Praise Jesus I can feel a Rapture a comin on bruthas n sistas - HALLELUJAH!

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 7:57 PM
Comment #167650

I mean you people let Hitler Kill six million Jews! Good thing the U.S.A was there to bail your asses out! Mister Hitler why cant we all get along?
Posted by: teampdz at July 14, 2006 07:50 PM

Pardon me teampdz, but that has the ring of the Jews responsible for killing Christ. I just can’t take you seriously.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 7:58 PM
Comment #167653
the founder of this country were called terrorist at the beginning of our fight against the UK

Mmmm, no they weren’t. They were called traitors and scoudrels and many other names. But not terrorists. And not just because the term wasn’t coined yet, they never targetted civilian people with violence to create a sense of fear. They attacked strategic and military targets. Most civilians were not affected by the war other than to lend aid, save the British who were able to house their armies in citizens’ homes without asking permissions (hence one of our most prized amendments).

HTH

Posted by: Rhinehold at July 14, 2006 8:00 PM
Comment #167658

coonyjay, do you know the est. of the number killed if the US and Allies had to invade Japan would have been in the 7 million range, that includes civilians, and President Truman made the decision to drop the bomb, how many lives did he save by doing that.
Peace loving Muslims lobbing missiles at civilians, now that sounds like a oxy-moron. Kill people because you love peace, that make a lot of sense, a lot of non-sense

Posted by: KT at July 14, 2006 8:08 PM
Comment #167659

Israel getting into Lebanon is always a big mistake:

March 1978: Israel invades to stop Palestinian attacks
1982: Full-scale invasion; Israel occupies Beirut; pro-Israel militias massacre Palestinian refugees
May 1983: Israel pulls back, but keeps “security zone”
February 1992: Israeli air strike kills Hezbollah leader
1996: Israel launches “Grapes of Wrath” raids on Hezbollah; 100 civilians die under Israeli shelling of UN base at Qana
May 2000: Israel withdraws troops from Lebanon
January 2004: Prisoners-bodies swap agreed between Hezbollah and Israel
from:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5182048.stm
Lebanon is a real country, unlike palestine, and Israel will gain nothing of value, in return for a lot of ill will, well beyond the arab world. Lebanese civilians are being killed, and it is way too extreme and unjustified.

Posted by: ohrealy at July 14, 2006 8:09 PM
Comment #167661

One prayer you should pray Euro-boy.
Pray the Bible is not true. Pray hard…..
Posted by: coonyjay at July 14, 2006 08:01 PM

Don’t you see the logical absurdity of your recommendation coon?

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 8:13 PM
Comment #167673

Paul

Since Hezbollah started it why is Israel taking it out mostly on Lebanese civilians? It appears they want all out war in the Middle East.

Posted by: mark at July 14, 2006 8:37 PM
Comment #167676

Lebanon had all the hallmarks of a country that could realistically become a blueprint for democracy in the Arab world. A country growing increasingly successful with a moderate core of people, intent on building better lives for themselves and their country. And Israel contemptuously seeks to tear that down? What in Heavens name is their real agenda? They have never derived benefits from their adventures in Lebanon.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 8:48 PM
Comment #167683

Paul, I agree with much of your perspective with Iran being behind the Middle East crisis but I do not believe there will ever be peace between Isreal and Palestine. Iranian President Mahlmoud is one of the newest troublemaker on the world stage. He is defiant and rebellious with the West. He wants NOTHING from the Americans and Europe. He only wants to keep the nuclear rights, nothing else. I am not surprised if he wants to use nuclear warheads to instantly destroy Israel. It is the ultimate goal of Islam to wipe out the birth place and nation of Christ. I don’t care if one is a muslim, there are good muslims out there but there are also bad muslims especially who pervert in the name of Allah by butchering and beheading innocent civilians.
Israel attacked the Beirut airport to disrupt any means of transporting any warheads or destruction that will bring to Israel. Syria and Iran are able to bring military supplies at Beirut airport even it is a civilian airport. Lebanon is a small country, there is not enough room for “big” military. Lebanon is the breeding ground for Hezbollah and Hamas and they are prepared to destroy Israel by any means. In order to do that they had to find a “reason” to make Israel angry and start a war, as it has happened in the past. Israel has in the past been aggressive and defensive when it comes to violating the occupation zone or their military. I believe it is the Islam’s way of hypocrizing themselves by making the West or Israel at faults with intervention. They say “he did it!”, “he started it!” causing a hell of bloodshed in their bigotry.
Hezbollah announced for war today. It is a great way for Iran to push aside the nuclear issue and divert their attention by assisting behind Hezbollah and Hamas in the Middle East crisis. Iran wants to buy more time building their nuclear goals and cause headaches on the world stage, the U.N. Keep in mind, radical Islam never believes in peace. They will fight until they die in the name of their god. I’d say “Allah, the great Wrath!”

Posted by: kev1977 at July 14, 2006 8:56 PM
Comment #167685

Paul
Lebanon has hezballah in it’s government. Hezballah is firing missles from Lebanon. If hezballah leaves Lebanon then Isreal will leave Lebanon alone. Lebanon should send hezballah back to Iran where they came from in the first place. Then Isreal would take care of our worries of Iran’s nuclear threat.

Posted by: KAP at July 14, 2006 8:59 PM
Comment #167686

Lebanon has allowed Hezbollah to operate from its territory for years. They should have known that Israel would stomp them into dust eventually.

Posted by: traveller at July 14, 2006 9:01 PM
Comment #167688

HRH, there were some references to terrorist during the War of Independence and terrorist groups such as Son’s of Liberty, and were mentioned as such in England’s paper. They did not target civilians, like you said, but property and goods, but I will bow and say that it was not used like it is today.

Mark. Hamas and Hezbollah, they are hiding among the civilians and unfortunately they do that so it makes Israel look bad for killing civilians, yet they feel that they can do the same thing and get away with it.

thelibertine; remember Jews don’t believe in the new testament, and the Torah states a tooth for a tooth.

Posted by: KT at July 14, 2006 9:02 PM
Comment #167692

Democracy without the people’s commitment to objective and reasoned rule of law is like a car without tires. It’s still a car, but, it ain’t going far.

Lebanon is a democracy, one favored by the Bush Administration, but, Lebanon’s power lies not in the government, but in Hezbollah which observes no rule of law, but, passionate faith in religion and terrorist tactics. The Palestinians, elected a government democratically, but, again, Hamas is not founded on the rule of deliberated objective law, but, on passionate faith in religion and terrorist tactics.

Israel is a nation founded by a people who believe in the rule of deliberated objective law. And as a you democracy they have done very well for themselves given the regional hatred of their ever having achieved nation status in the first place. However, Israel is a nation whose patience with diplomacy and treaties and talk, have run out.

When a democracy based on rule of law runs out of patience with provisions proscribed by law, they resort to a more ancient law - might makes right! A trap America’s impatience fell into with Iraq, Abu-Ghraib, Guantanamo, rendition, and usurpation of its Constitutional checks and balances.

It appears Israel is adopting Bush’s agenda. Might makes right, and war against peoples whose neighborhoods harbor terrorists are fair game as enemy combatants. Bush said we would not distinguish between terrorists and those who harbor or support them. Israel appears to be finding support in those words to justify its might makes right reaction to terrorist violence delivered upon its people and lands, which is exasperating its people’s devotion to rule of law and diplomacy.

What all this means is, war is breaking out and spreading throughout the Middle East for many years to come, and there won’t be any more peace conferences, or diplomatic cease fires. Patience and confidence in democracy have run out in the Middle East. And Bush’s belief in a policy which predicted that if you build democratic elections, love will come, has been proven woefully inadequate.

Terrorism and war in the Middle East is going to cripple our economy as it tries to meet the challenges of a retiring baby boom generation and inflationary future spurred by horrendous increases in the price of energy caused by production interruptions in the Middle East as conflicts there widen and spread.

If ever there was a time to invest in Exxon, this is it. I believe that Bush and Cheney families have that base well covered, at least.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 14, 2006 9:13 PM
Comment #167698

It’s funny David, but I read a theory somewhere recently, perhaps on this blog, that the war in Iraq wasn’t about getting Iraqi oil, it was actually about taking Iraqi oil off the world market. Allegedly this policy was cooked up by the Bush puppet masters in an oil companys HO. But that’s too absurd to be true. Isn’t it? isn’t it? Funny how oil is going up again……………

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 9:21 PM
Comment #167700

All this crap about history is really hiding the fact that the Jews have always been on our side and the ragheads have not. Who the hell cares what happened 20 years ago? Its not revalent.
Hezbolla scum are hiding among the civies in lebanon so in order to kill them collateral damage is high. say la vee, better them than us. If they dont want to be targets let them kick the murdering trash out of town. I hope Israel dosent stop untill they are all toast. We in America dont have the balls to stand up to the rags so we need the Jews.
Posted by: white bigot at July 14, 2006 09:09 PM

The Jews have always been on your side eh bigot? Never heard of the USS Liberty? In fact, I think the proper description should be that the US has always been on Israels side. Israel has always been on its own side. Even when it was spying on its patron and benefactor.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 14, 2006 9:24 PM
Comment #167705

The USS Liberty was a spy ship intercepting and decoding Israeli military communications. It was giving this information to the Arab countries Israel was fighting in the Six Day War.

Posted by: traveller at July 14, 2006 9:38 PM
Comment #167710

Hey - maybe we can drop Jonathan Pollard on Lebanon…?

Posted by: tony at July 14, 2006 9:54 PM
Comment #167711

Paul,

Good article. Certainly the liberal in me wants to see a pull back from the brink of war, although I think all parties have passed the brink now.

One thing I can’t get past though are the facts that Palestinian gunmen killed two Israeli soldiers and kidnapped a third (also at least one Israeli civilian has since been kidnapped), then Hezbollah fighters crossed Israel’s border and killed three Israeli soldiers and captured another two.

In my book those were acts of war plain and simple. There’s also such a thing as a code of military conduct. Soldiers don’t like leaving their fallen or captured comrades behind. What else could Israel do? You know Hamas and Hezbollah (along with Iran and Syria) want one thing and one thing only. The total destruction of Israel.

What choice’s does Israel have?

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at July 14, 2006 9:56 PM
Comment #167715

Why is it the US’s job to bring anyone from anywhere?

Posted by: Ynot at July 14, 2006 10:05 PM
Comment #167718

KansasDem-
It’s not so much trying to get them back that’s the trick, it’s how they do so. They shouldn’t waste time fomenting a all-out war in the Middle East, they should be putting together intelligence and operations strictly to get him out. All the punitive actions only serve to sharpen the divides, while doing little to actually save the soldiers.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at July 14, 2006 10:26 PM
Comment #167719

Saying that the US can only accomplish peace in the Middle East with the “aid of Iran” is like saying that World War II could only be settled with the aid of Germany.

A conference? What dreamworld is Paul living in?

Iran won’t even respond to an international offer (thats been sitting on the table for ages) of enticements to talk about their nuclear program. Why in the world would they participate in a conference to bring about peace?

What will entice Iran to participate in this conference? If you suggest either force or sanctions, you can count on Security Council vetoes from the likes of Russia and France.

Considering Iran’s sponsporship of Hezbollah, Hamas and the Iraq insurgency, it’s painfully obvious that they don’t WANT peace. They want the opposite. In fact, they want the destruction of Israel and they’ve even said as much.

The fact is that Israel pulled out of Lebanon. They pulled out of Gaza. They’ve given up land for the prospect of peace, and the land they’ve given up has turned into heavily armed hornet’s nests of Islamic radicals who launch attacks from those places.

Unfortunatley, Iran and Hezbollah and Hamas want one thing: WAR.

No concessions, no negotiations, no land, money or resources is going to change this. They want war, and so that’s what they’re gonna get. Israel has no choice.

Posted by: Mr P at July 14, 2006 10:42 PM
Comment #167725

Stephen,

I only pointed that out because the killing and kidnapping of Israeli soldiers on Israeli land is basically the “straw that broke the camel’s back” and now Israel is on the offensive, IMO rightfully so. The Palestinians can’t or won’t reign in Hamas and the Lebanese can’t or won’t reign in Hezbollah.

I just can’t fault Israel in this. War is hell, but if a country allows militant terrorist groups to set up shop then they must be prepared for the cosequences.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at July 14, 2006 11:45 PM
Comment #167733

Paul,

I think that you are missing something here. The George W. Failure Regime is causing this. As I wrote elsewhere:

North Korea’s nuclear program was contained prior to Bush. Declaring a policy of gun sliggin “Preemption” - then naming the countries you plan to attack - then starting to check them off the list - one by one - then practicing “Diplomacy” with the ones that actually do have WMD - then spreading “Democracy” to an Iranian sympathetic and influenced majority in Iraq - then spreading Democracy to an Iranian sympathetic and influenced terrorist organization (Hezbollah) in Lebanon, then spreading “Democracy” an Iranian influenced terrorist organization in the West Bank and Gaza (HAMAS) - then bogging the most powerful military in the world down in a quagmire and civil war - then threatening preemptive nuclear war against Iran - then confronting Iran from a position of self imposed weakness - might be a lot like putting ourselves in the position of being a hungry cat in a cage with five birds (something my father apparently did when he was a kid) - the cat is not smart enough to kill one and move on to the next - it gets one in its mouth and one under each paw and then constantly lets one go in order to try and catch another. Under the above listed circumstances, are you surprised that Iran is encouraging and supporting civil war in Iraq - encouraging and supporting HAMAS to escalate - encouraging and supporting Hezbollah to attack Israel? That is where this President has led us.
Posted by: Ray Guest at July 13, 2006 03:24 PM

David,
I agree with much of what you say. I would add: These are religious tribal conflicts. Israel is a democracy, but they have their own fundamentalist right wing religious zealots. Settlements in the West Bank and Gaza have been illegal, inappropriate, provocative, and inflammatory from the start. The ancient religious tribal conflict between the Muslims and the Jews is obvious, but we Christians have a long history with both and that is our holy land as well. Christians are predisposed to see the Jews as God’s chosen and to believe that the mid-east will be the site of Armageddon and to think that the fulfillment of prophesy is a good thing. We have a “born wrong the first time” President. When you set up a large enough body of expectation, then prophesy has a way of becoming self-fulfilling. For example, when consumer confidence goes down, the economy goes down. All the fear mongering about the computers and the “end timers” before the millenium - then nothing happened - for a minute - but the negative expectations were built up - then 911. 2012 is coming. The “end timers” are going to love that. So what I am saying is: Bad news feeds bad news - “nothing to fear, but fear itself.” We Christians are just as tied into this tribal conflict as anyone. Our tribe is the U.S.A. Our tribe is Christianity. Our faith is in the false power of the military instead of the real power of Love - God’s Love - if that what you want to call it - but I am a secular part time atheist - so I just call it what it is - Love. Given the religious fundamentalist nature of all three tribes in this conflict… How do you expect to find “reason” (the “name” of intelligent Love)?

Posted by: Ray Guest at July 15, 2006 12:48 AM
Comment #167741

This appears to be a tipical muslim action. Comit an act of agression and when there is a reaction proclaim innocense. what other religion uses its religious institutions as armories while proclaiming that the tenth century ad is too modern.

Posted by: dave at July 15, 2006 1:28 AM
Comment #167742

Rhinehold: A bit off thread but wer’nt a lot of civilian royalist hung or run off to Canada during and after the revolution?

Posted by: BillS at July 15, 2006 1:35 AM
Comment #167743

Paul: Good basic idea but doubtful we can ever work with Iran. They hate us and with good reason. Just one of the many reasons is that we supported Saddam in the Iran/Iraq war. In just the last great battle the Iranians lost 60,000. In that battle Iraq used US supplied chemical weapons,US reconaisence and logistics.I’d be pissed too.

Posted by: BillS at July 15, 2006 1:53 AM
Comment #167757

Seeing how no one has yet rescued KAP (& traveller & KansasDem & anyone else I missed) from his ignorance, I guess I’ll have to.

Lebanon has hezballah in it’s government. Hezballah is firing missles from Lebanon. If hezballah leaves Lebanon then Isreal will leave Lebanon alone. Lebanon should send hezballah back to Iran where they came from in the first place. Then Isreal would take care of our worries of Iran’s nuclear threat.

On the face of it a good question grasshopper, seems logically perfect. The answer is they can’t, not unless they want to go back into civil war or reconstruct the compromises already made to at least allow civil society to function (which is now was functioning, thanks to those brave Israelis in their flying machines). Either way Hezbollah wins.
For those of you who would have missed the broadcast (I’m guessing most) here is the transcript of some enlightenment,
Lebanon analysis
If you don’t want to read the whole thing (though that is worthwhile), the relevant section is “Formidable guerrilla movement”.

You see the leadership in Lebanon actually think through what will almost certainly happen if they take rash gambles, something more people should start trying. It seems to me that if the leaders of America and Israel weren’t a bunch of chicken hawks they wouldn’t have so easily over reacted & over reached.
And for those of you who want to take on the entire Middle East now, maybe Iraq (or even Afghanistan for that matter) needs to be completed first before that happens… “No dessert till you finish your mains junior!”

What I want to know is, how many more American soliders need to die in Iraq for Israel?

Posted by: loki at July 15, 2006 4:52 AM
Comment #167759

…no wait…
maybe that should be ‘American soliders dying in Iraq for Iran’, it’s actually hard to tell the difference.

Posted by: loki at July 15, 2006 5:22 AM
Comment #167761

Ynot asked: “Why is it the US’s job to bring anyone from anywhere?”

Only one answer I can think of. Oil. Look at the hundreds of points drop in the stock market since the escalation of violence began several days ago. There’s the bulk of your answer. Folks will try to dress it up in terms of allied support and terrorism, but, it is oil.

Terrorism has been with the human species for as long as prostitution, theivery, and jealousy, and competition. That is why there can never be a victory in a war on terrrorism. Terrorism exists in the breast and hearts of the species.

Now if you could bring about utopia where all peoples have all they need all the time, terrorism would diminsh dramatically, but greed would still harbor it sleeping.

The Americans and English terrorized the Indians, and the Indians terrorized the colonialists right back and British right back, both sides with grotesque atrocities in the eyes of the other.

Americans terrorized Blacks until it began to wane in the early 1970’s. Neo-Nazi types like Tim McVeigh and his cohort/s terrorized our government and people in Oklahoma.

Rapists, pedophiles, and serial killers and 7/11 armed robbers are terrorizing our citizenry as I type. If we want to fight terror and achieve some amount of victory, we should begin the war right here at home. And ask other nations to follow our lead. Terrorism is innate to the creative mind of humans who find themselves powerless to overcome perceived enemies by any other means.

G. Washington terrorized the British soldiers by abandoning the then rules of engagment which called for an open field with clear line of sight and attrition by volleys of bullets repetitively until the officers got tired, at which point everyone would gentlemanly agree to cease fire for the night and resume in the morning.

Imagine the horror of British soldiers being sniped from trees, and the aiming at British officers instead of the grunts, and the hit and run tactics Washington adopted from the Indians. Now that was terror. And in the end these uncivilized terrorist tactics of the colonialsts won the day, and we celebrate our victory to this day, and herald are uncivilized tactics as noble, courageous, inventive, and emblematic of our nation’s spirit.

Terrorism. It always has been, it will always be, when those who percieve their way of life, history and culture being threatened and find themselves militarily impoverished to stand to in a rank and file engagement of attrition on a field of honor.

Our Civil War began with rules of engagement and civilized conduct of war. By the end, rape, pillage, looting, torture, starvation, all became commonplace by members of both the North and the South.

And terror in America is not a historical thing. Try growing up in E. LA, today, or in other of dozens of gangland turfs spreading throughout our nation where police are reluctant to tread. That too is terrorism, which us more civilized folks choose to travel around and ignore, rationalizing, they are just killing each other off. They are doing us all a favor. But, their numbers and organization have been growing at an alarming rate. By all means, ignore it, travel around it, for as long they will permit you to.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 15, 2006 6:26 AM
Comment #167773

The USS Liberty was a spy ship intercepting and decoding Israeli military communications. It was giving this information to the Arab countries Israel was fighting in the Six Day War.
Posted by: traveller at July 14, 2006 09:38 PM

What??? What evidence do you have that Liberty, a US naval vessel, was passing intel to Arab countries, mostly aligned and supplied by the Soviet Union, at the peak of the cold war? Are you suggesting that the command of the vessel was acting contrary to US government policy, effectively treasonously passing intell to enemies of the US’s ally in the region? But even if this is not true, I suppose that because it was a spy ship, that means it was all right to attack it and kill 34 fine young Americans. By the way traveller, are you American?

“Never before in the history of the United States Navy has a Navy Board of Inquiry ignored the testimony of American military eyewitnesses and taken, on faith, the word of their attackers.
— Captain Richard F. Kiepfer, Medical Corps, US Navy (retired), USS Liberty Survivor


“…the board of inquiry (concluded) that the Israelis knew exactly what they were doing in attacking the Liberty.”
— CIA Director Richard Helms

That the attack was deliberate “just wasn’t a disputed issue” within the National Security Agency
— Former NSA Director retired Army Lieutenant General William Odom on 3 March 2003 in an interview for Naval Institute Proceedings

“The evidence was clear. Both Admiral Kidd and I believed with certainty that this attack…was a deliberate effort to sink an American ship and murder its entire crew…. It was our shared belief…that the attack…could not possibly have been an accident…. I am certain that the Israeli pilots [and] their superiors…were well aware that the ship was American.”
— Captain Ward Boston, JAGC, US Navy (retired), senior legal counsel to the US Navy Court of Inquiry

Well traveller, with allies like Israel, who needs enemies?

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 15, 2006 9:46 AM
Comment #167774

And for those who think Israel is just a little cissy seeking peace, harmony and goodwill between men, check out this link;

http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig/margolis12.html

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 15, 2006 10:01 AM
Comment #167780

I’m also in Euroland (Ireland) at the moment. Paul you talk a lot of sense.

I wish some of the others would do a little research outside of watching Fox News or CNN (who’s reports I watched online regarding the current conflict and found them to be inadequate and misleading).

Americans should request BBC, Channel 4 or even Sky News or some other respectable source (pinch of salt here for Sky News - owned by Murdoch & Fox but far less propagandist) on their satelite or cable packages.

What you watch in the US is not really news. It’s what a particular corporate element wants you to see.

Posted by: abhcoide at July 15, 2006 10:36 AM
Comment #167781

1) Talking to terrorists has never done much good. No matter what you give them, they want more. And they don’t abide by their agreements.

2) Talking about tolerance, prosperity and peace in connection with the Middle East, is unreasonable. You will never see Isreal live in “peace”, until you get her neighbors, and their respective governments, to stop hateing her.

3) If the biggest problem we face is terrorism, then you have to not only fight the “terrorists” but the country (country) that harbors them.

4) Terrorists are equal opportunity killers. They don’t care who they kill to get their point across. Many bombings in Isreal and not just jews were killed. Terrorism in Bali, and Austrailians were killed. Bombings in Iraq with Iraqui bombs and only Iraqui’s being killed. They honestly don’t care who their target is. Maybe someday Arabs (Muslims) will wake up, and see that.

5) A “backlash” against terrorism will come when the governments of the Mid-East decide that it is not in their best interest to harbor terrorists nor create a public mindset for hate crimes. It is in the hearts and minds of the people, that this war has to be won, and the people have to enforce a government structure that punishes wrong thinking and rewards right thinking people. The governments and the people of the Mid-East, have to have a mindset for peace, before peace can be a posibility. (Isreal is doing her part, she just wants to exhist in peace).

6) The U.S. isn’t anyone to listen to in the peace process. Out of 14 major countries world wide, 10 said that the greatest threat to world peace was The United States (outweighing the nuke threat from Iran and Korea). Do you really think that with our history of bringing not peace but terrorism and civil war to Iraq, that we are in any position to give peace lessons to anyone?

7) The only thing that gets rid of a bully, is a bigger bully. If America really wants to help Isreal? We should give ‘em some nukes…

Posted by: PlayNice at July 15, 2006 10:53 AM
Comment #167791

“but it is up to the U.S. to stop being an observer and start doing something to bring the warring parties back from the brink.”

WRONG!
It is TIME for the US to learn to mind its own business and stop meddling in everybody else’s affairs. Every time there is a problem somewhere, arrogant Americans think WE have to step in and meddle. This never solves the problem, wastes our resources, and gets thousands of us killed for nothing. ENOUGH!

Posted by: capnmike at July 15, 2006 11:41 AM
Comment #167795

abhcoide, if you’re in Dublin, give me a call, and you can try a Guinness!

Playnice obviously didn’t bother to click on the link I provided, but would prefer to revel in his/her ignorance, tho’ I suspect it’s a him.

I would have thought that the vicious attack on the Liberty would have qualified as state terrorism. Just for your convenience Playnice, here’s the link again.
http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig/margolis12.html

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 15, 2006 12:02 PM
Comment #167799

PS playnice, Israel doesn’t need US nukes, they have long had their own. No wonder Iran is seeking nukes. The logic of these weapons is, if my potential enemy has them, then I need them. And Israel was the first in that region to develop them. Then India had to get them, then Pakistan.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 15, 2006 12:09 PM
Comment #167801

Playnice, you can’t lump all terrorists together like that. Tim McVeigh is not the same as suicide bombers in the Middle East. And the insurgents in Iraq are not the same as the Hizbellah. They have different motives, different histories, different agendas. Only their tactics are the same.

You are right to say that talking to Hizbellah will do no good - At this Time. Israel completely withdrew from Lebanon on its own accord. Proof positive that there is nothing Israel can do that would halt Hizbellah. And the reason is Hizbellah views Israel as an obstacle to religious right to the land Israel occupies.

But, you are wrong to say for example that talk did no good with the IRA in Ireland. In the end, talk became the means to compromise and relative peace. Terrorist groups are dynamic, their needs, goals, and objectives can shift over time, even toward eventual peace. India had some of the most heinous terrorist activities and civil war occur between Hindu and Muslims after the departure of the British. But, in the end, relative peace was achieved. Israel itself came into being on the back of terrorism. Now they are a nation state defending the rule of law and national boundaries.

It is foolish in the extreme to discount learning what unique terrorist groups are about, and probing for windows and doors to open negotiations. Terrorist groups have one thing usually in common. They believe they have nothing left to lose and everything to gain. That dynamic can change and when it does, it is vital that other parties in conflict with the terrorist group both recognize and seize that opportunity to open dialogue.

Iran wanted very much to open dialogue with the U.S. after the invasion of Iraq. They sent many subtle and no so subtle beckons to Bush to engage in talks. Bush would have none of it. We don’t negotiate with terrorists or those who harbor and support them, he said. And a window of opportunity passed. Now that window cannot be opened at a time when the Bush administration has to be wishing it could.

It is a very complex and sophisticated study to learn what turned otherwise normal human beings into terrorists. They weren’t born terrorists. Folks want a simple black and white solution to dealing with terrorists. But, the reality is, there isn’t one.

And each terrorist group, from the Spartans, to the Colonialist Americans, to Hamas, to the KKK, have to be dealt with individually and in context with the circumstances. Capitulation to terrorists can never be an option.

But, standing ready to draw truce with their leaders if that opportunity arises, is mandatory, unless, one’s view of such things is to blow them all to hell, every man, woman, and child. But then, it is difficult to see the difference between the terrorists and those wiping them out.

Posted by: David R. Remer at July 15, 2006 12:36 PM
Comment #167811

I have intentionally kept my distance from Palestinian-Israeli issues for some years now, partly because the problems seem enormous and intractable, and partly out of sheer frustration.

But when my frustrations with domestic policies and partisan bickering have me on the verge of advocating civil war or revolution, I remember the Middle East—and I re-remember again the incredible cost of extremism, religious bigotry and fratricide.

The Bush administration’s abandonment of advocating peaceful negotiations and US support of peaceful methods in Israeli-Arab-Palestinian issues is a marked departure from past administrations. A lot of hard diplomatic work has gone by the wayside, with the door of peace rusted shut from the lack of use. Such is the real price of extremism.

I can’t help but wonder if the Bush administration’s strangely muted response to the current challenges between the parties involved isn’t from an ideological position that is elucidated by it’s Evangelical base: an unquestioned (and largely unexamined) support of Israel, despite it’s excesses, a biblical affinity for rapture-like consequences that they believe will begin in the Middle East, and an indifference and minimizing of legitimate Palestinian grievances.

I’m sure someone will correct me if I’m wrong in my analysis.

Posted by: Tim Crow at July 15, 2006 1:26 PM
Comment #167822

David,

Somehow missed this the first time. You wrote:

Condi Rice is the best the White House has, let her do her thing, and leave Bush alone to fret over his legacy. he’s got enough on his plate. Where is your compassion?

No use foe Condi - at least none other than what Bush apparently uses her for… Compassion for Bush… I am all for compassion… …even for Bush. But fretting over his legacy is why he will leave America’s finest pinned down in the middle of a civil war. Must not admit mistakes. Besides war is profitable - and what is good for Exxon Mobile is - well - good for Exxon Mobile.

phx8,

You wrote:

Each side has a long history of committing atrocity. The US has no business helping one or the other. Any moral high ground held by the sufferers of the Holocaust was slowly but surely squandered by Zionism.

I don’t think that anything Israel has done compares to the scale of the holocaust. There is some evidence to suggest that the Israelites committed genocide when they entered the promise land. This tribal conflict goes back a long way. Realistically a good case could be made for why we should support Israel. They are a liberal western democracy. They also have a powerful Jewish lobby in the U.S. We Christians (not me) share their Holy book and their Holy Land. Our desire for Armageddon, our tribal religious fanatical roots here… Our political commitment to stay the course and protect Bush’s legacy… I think we have crossed the line… We are on the brink and Kennedy is dead. Who is going to pull back? Is Israel going to allow themselves to be attacked? They already have nuclear weapons. Is Iran going to stop promoting wider conflict that plays into their hands? Is Syria going to stop backing the Sunni? Will a gun slingin “end timer” President shrink back from Armageddon? It is the nature of a scorpion to sting. It is the nature of a gun slinger to settle problems at the end of a gun. You don’t blame a scorpion for stinging. That is what scorpions do. You can’t blame a gun slinger for settling problems at the point of a gun. That is what they do. You must be drinking Absinthe if you think that this President will be capable of wise enlightened statesmanship. Ain’t gonna happen.

So…

My last post was about love and peace - wisdom - enlightenment - reason… all good… this is reality… ain’t gonna happen. I have no solutions. Hitler pursued the final solution to the Jewish problem. There was no Jewish problem. They were innocent scape goats much like Jesus - maybe not quite as innocent as Jesus - but pretty innocent. However Hitler was perversely correct. There certainly would be no Jewish problem if he killed them all. There would be no mid-east problem if we just nuclear glassified the whole thing, and got it over with. the fundamentalist Christians could all be raptured and the rest of us could live in peace. Now Hitler killing all of the Jews was never really going to work. Universal spiritual law: “What goes around - comes around” and you strengthen what you fight against - antibiotics antibiotic resistant bacteria… Nuclear glassification of the entire mid-east will never actually work either - but it sure is tempting. On balance, David is probably correct, the war probably needs to happen. We should try to get our military out of the middle of it - good luck with that - not gonna happen - we will be drawn in even further than this jackass gunslinger has led us - but let the Arabs and Jews kill each other until they have had enough of killing. I am not sure if full fledged war is coming now or not. It could wait until around 2012 or 2032. But it is probably coming and sooner is better than later. We wouldn’t want to put off Armageddon. Whenever it does happen, it will be the direct effect of Bush’s failed foreign policy.

Posted by: Ray Guest at July 15, 2006 1:58 PM
Comment #167825

I am quite sure Falwell, Dobson, and Robertson will still be here after the rapture. Imagine how embarrassing that is going to be. Can’t wait to see the look on their faces…

Posted by: Ray Guest at July 15, 2006 2:07 PM
Comment #167857

I just reread my previous post. My wording makes it sound like phx8 is drinking Absinthe - lest I start any wars here - quite the contrary - I mostly agree with phx8 on this issue. I meant anyone who thinks Bush will have any sense must be drinking Absinthe. Where are the Republicans in this thread - defending Bush’s policy - speechless?

Posted by: Ray Guest at July 15, 2006 3:53 PM
Comment #167868

Bush’s policy hands off. Israel can handle their own problems without our help.

Posted by: KAP at July 15, 2006 4:59 PM
Comment #167875

Israel would be in real trouble without the U.S. They would have been long gone long ago. We have been proping them up all along. There is no way their economy could have sustained this without us.

Posted by: Ray Guest at July 15, 2006 6:01 PM
Comment #167896

I just want to throw a couple of thoughts into the conversation.

(1) This situation was inevitable. The “end game” may have been precipitated by the post 9-11 policies of Bush & Co. but it was inevitable all the same. It’s simply impossible to deal with someone (or a group of “someones”) who’s primary goal is your total destruction.

(2) Is America up to handling the fight? Anyone that’s read any of my posts regarding Iraq in the past several months has to know that I believe Bush & Rummy have stretched our military to the breaking point.

Just two days ago I read an op-ed peice in Huffington Post by Jonathan Powers titled: “Traumatic Stress”. Powers is a Captain in the Army’s 1st Armored Division and he says, “because so few Americans are sharing the burden of this War, our soldiers return to Iraq for numerous tours. In less than eight months, the War in Iraq will become the third longest war in American history, while less than one percent of Americans have served their nation in this time of need. As a result, soldiers are returning for second, third, and even fourth deployments.”

http://news.yahoo.com/s/huffpost/20060713/cm_huffpost/025009;_ylt=Au8PBAQztdpBFOEAS3dQEqAd6sgF;_ylu=X3oDMTA5aHJvMDdwBHNlYwN5bmNhdA—

That fact in itself is totally shameful, but it should also scare the living crap out of everyone of us. On a recent CNN broadcast I learned that Rummy, during one of his surprise visits to Iraq, was once again “nailed” over insufficient and worn out equipment by the same troops who are forced to use the same worn out junk to try and complete their mission over and over again.

While I’m sure we still have major air superiority I truly fear for the fate of our ground troops in Iraq and around the world. It appears that we are now embarking on the verge of a true world war (don’t forget North Korea) and our leadership is too busy playing politics to tell us the cold, hard truth.

Eisenhower wisely created the military industrial complex knowing that in the modern age a manufacturing company couldn’t simply change from manufacturing plow shares to manufacturing swords overnight. Bush & Co. have screwed up the whole works with no-bid contracts that have placed our troops in danger.

Transportation may very likely be crippled by this escalation of the war in the Middle East and we should have a plan in place to increase bus and train passenger traffic all across, and throughout, the USA. Do we have a plan? I fear it may resemble the federal response to the flooding of New Orleans. Need I say more?

Bottom line: We’re not prepared!

KansasDem


Posted by: KansasDem at July 15, 2006 8:48 PM
Comment #167973

Seems Bush & Buddies are again 100% backing Israel (“We fully support Israel’s right to defend herself”).

I guess the assumption is Israel does nothing offensive or escalating…

In addition to dubious wisdom of playing with this Middle East Tar-Baby in the first place, why are we so surprised/upset when:
- China won’t reign in N.Korea
- Russia won’t reign in Iran
- France wouldn’t help w/ Iraq
- etc.

when we always(?) refuse their requests to reign in our favorite-son Israel?

Israel is an ally and should be treated as such. However, they do not seem like a particularly good/trustworthy ally — and they should be treated no better than their allegiance deserves.

Posted by: Brian at July 16, 2006 5:26 AM
Comment #168009
How hollow that rings given Israels deafness to other UN resolutions with regard to itself. Israeli policy for too long has been predicated on an imperialistic land grab partnered by a policy of treating the Palestinians as vermin.

Land grab? Israel has offered the Palestinians land time and time again. Their answer is they don’t want it. They will not be satisfied until all the Israelis are dead. Period. No other country would put up with this. Why in the world would we sympathize with terrorists? I’m all for peaceful solutions, but both sides have to want it, and if one refuses it, and at the same time threatens the other, they have to do what they have to do to defend themselves.

Kuwait funds Hezbollah to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. Nice way to thank the world after we saved their ass.

Posted by: Max at July 16, 2006 11:15 AM
Comment #168017

Max;
I couldn’t agree more. We sure fell into that one didn’t we? Wasn’t that the …. other Bush?

Posted by: PlayNice at July 16, 2006 12:03 PM
Comment #168059

Why in the world would we sympathize with terrorists?
Posted by: Max at July 16, 2006 11:15 AM

Why indeed Max. Perhaps you haven’t checked out the link I provided above, so here it is again. Now, what was that you were saying about terrorism?


http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig/margolis12.html

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 16, 2006 2:54 PM
Comment #168061

It’s a sad thing to say, but it seems that some Americans, or those I assume anyway are Americans, have greater allegiance to Israel than they do to their home country. Go figure!

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 16, 2006 2:55 PM
Comment #168092

Long live Israel! Long live apartheid!

Posted by: john doe at July 16, 2006 7:16 PM
Comment #168097

KansasDem,

“Eisenhower wisely created the military industrial complex knowing that in the modern age a manufacturing company couldn’t simply change from manufacturing plow shares to manufacturing swords overnight.”

Eisenhower also warned;

http://coursesa.matrix.msu.edu/~hst306/documents/indust.html

“This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence — economic, political, even spiritual — is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.”

We cannot allow the MIC to become the be all and end all of our military. Boots on the ground are what win wars, not video game warriors.

As you mentioned our troops are on their third and fourth rotations in Iraq, and how many of our reserves have also been over used?
This is a result of the Rumsfeld military. His “fast strike” military is not a panacea.
If a World War breaks out, and the way things are going that seems more likely, we are not prepared for an extended war of attrition, let alone any massive battles, we don’t have the ready manpower to deal with it.

Posted by: Rocky at July 16, 2006 8:28 PM
Comment #168107

Rocky and all. Take a look at the whitehouse blog. Looks to me like they are working up to an invasion of Syria. Us, the Israelis or both. Somewhat like the invasion of Cambodia. Get your street shoes out of the closet.
I hope I am wrong. That kind of bonehead move could convince Iran to invade both Syria and Iraq. We do not have the troops to stop them without WMDs.

Posted by: BillS at July 16, 2006 10:10 PM
Comment #168111

BillS,

Do you have a link?

Most of what I have found through Google is pablum.

Posted by: Rocky at July 16, 2006 10:23 PM
Comment #168116

Paul in Euroland,

Your link is a reach at best. A conspiracy theory along the lines of “Americans did not really go to the moon” or “Michael Jackson shot JFK”. You must really not have a good defense of Lebanon’s actions if you need to reach like that. Even if it were true, I don’t see how it would change the current situation. Lebanon attacked Israel and they are doing what they need to to defend their country, which means putting it out of the reach of future missiles.

You are spending a lot of time arguing that Israel somehow deserves for its soldiers to be taken hostage or deserves missiles to be fired upon it and should… what? Do nothing in response? Does this sound logical to you?

It was not so long ago that Clinton negotiated an offer to the Palestinians for their own state, which they refused. The deal was real. But they didn’t want it. If history has shown anything it’s that Israel cannot expect negotiations and appeasement to work for them.

Posted by: Max at July 16, 2006 10:55 PM
Comment #168121

Paul

OK, I’ll bite. I don’t think that anyone is paying attention to your web link artical because of it’s anti-semetic overtones. I you are really interested in the unvarnished facts of the incident see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Liberty_(AGTR-5)
The USS Liberty was attacked during the 6 day war. An unbiased, factual look at this event, in history, can be viewed at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six-Day_War
Isreal has never given up the right to defend herself, her people and her boarders.
The map of the Mid-East was changed in 1949. It’s time for the Arab nations to…..

JUST GET OVER IT! …….(pause)

Get on with their own lives, the business of THEIR own governments, and leave Isreal alone.

PS: Maybe the reason that some American’s don’t see what you see, is because we don’t take the side of Arab rights to Isreal’s 9rights to her0 land seriously. It would be the same as if the American Indians would strap bombs onto their bodys and blow up parts of America to get their land back. Europeans won the American Indian’s war, and we wouldn’t be willing to re-think that one either. With Isreal being the size roughly the size of New Jersey and the Arab lands the size of the rest of the United States? Really! There is actually in reality enough land in that area of the world for all “Arabs”. The real question here is:

Why can’t the Arab world (if they are really out for peace, as some claim) instead of helping Palistine inact war, inact peace by offering Palistine “lands” of their own (if they can’t live side by side with Isreal)….After all, there is plenty of land there to go around. Must they really have a strip of land less than the size of San Antonio?

(Also, no one is keeping Muslim interests from the Holy Mount…that’s still in Arab control)

This war isn’t about “land”. It’s about hate.
And, that can only be dealt with in the minds and hearts of men.

Posted by: PlayNice at July 16, 2006 11:30 PM
Comment #168139

Sure PlayNice, but on the land issue, why is the West Bank still ‘occupied’ land? Other people conquer land and then incorporate it into what they had before and then deal with the resulting issues - that is make the people in the conquered lands citizens or drive them out (if that’s the kind of people you are). If either of these options aren’t going to be taken, and we’ve all been waiting for long enough, then give the land back, all of it otherwise the gesture is wasted.
Regarding hate, ‘tis true that it has well and truly entrenched itself in the hearts of both Arab & Jew, though this can’t be completely separated from the land issue. More importantly how exactly is aerial bombardment meant to deal with the hate? Unless the plan is to override the hate with fear & intimidation - I will give people the benefit of assuming no one actually wants to wipe ‘them’ off the face of the earth, though spend some time in the echo chamber that is some RWDB blogs and you have to wonder at the anti-semitism (and here I use semite in the classical sense that includes every one that speaks Hebrew, Arabic, Aramaic et al.). Regardless, this is a ‘plan’ that only seeks to satisfy short term bloodlust, and guarantees ultimate failure - the hate will return as it has every time, deeper and more entrenched each time it does.
Surely we have finally reached a point where we can see that neither side is capable of dealing with their disagreements unsupervised, and that they should have their toys taken away from them and put under the thumb of a responsible adult. This festering wound endangers all of us.

Posted by: loki at July 17, 2006 1:10 AM
Comment #168156

Playnice, your own link in wiki by its own set parameters, does not deal with the contentious issues. Only what is undisputed. For the comments of US military, intelligence and government personnel alongside the accounts of survivors of the Liberty, try
http://www.ussliberty.org/

As for anti seimitism, well, isn’t that charge the first resort of Israeli apologists? It has lost any meaning through overuse. Being opposed to Israeli policy did not equate to anti semitism, until the ultra zionists gave it that definition. On the basis of that definition, the charge of anti semitism is a badge of honor!

Max, Israel invaded Lebanon back in the early ‘80. They were finally driven out by Hizbullah in 2000. During their occupation of Lebanon, they took Lebanese prisoners, some of whom remain in Israeli jails. Now, if Hezbullah were wrong to cross an international border and capture Israeli soldiers, which I believe they were, in what way was it different for Israel to do the same? And bear in mind, Hezbullah is only one element of Lebanese political society. The Lebanese governemnt, a fragile institution, does not have the power to take on Hezbullah, and if it attempted to do so, would probably fall. So you tell me, how does Israel killing innocents in Lebanon, destroying civilian infrastructure, and destabilising a weak society only emerging from civil war and domination by Syria, make Israel more secure? Can you not see the bitter harvest it will reap from this madness? But it is backed unconditionally by the US, so it draws both itself and its benefactor deeper into the mire, and alongside them, the rest of the international community.

Posted by: Paul in Euroland at July 17, 2006 3:37 AM
Comment #168297

Paul in Euroland,

I’ve researched the USS Liberty incident as much as possible over the internet and my opinion is that it was a tragic mistake. Still very controversial, but IMO it’s settled as a tragic mistake.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at July 17, 2006 6:13 PM
Comment #168780

Paul in Euroland,

The days of being an apologist for defending one’s right to live and disagree with maniacs is over. You post that the USS Liberty was destroyed by Jews, that Hezbollah is peaceful, that Lebanon was attacked first. 99% of the world disagrees. You are a fringe supporter who will always think the worst of Israel no matter what. So what’s the point of talking to you? You’re a great example of why it’s going to be impossible to reason with terrorists.

Again and again in the paper I read Hezbollah and Hamas blame the world for their situation while it is evident to everyone they are destroying their own society like a cancer. Islam’s Jew-Hatred is eating it up from the inside and destroying it.

Posted by: Max at July 19, 2006 9:08 AM
Comment #168785

Max,

GREAT POST !!!

Posted by: PlayNice at July 19, 2006 9:26 AM
Comment #186572

First of all, these people in so called Israel today are not Israel. Jews were never part of Israel. Jews came from Judea and Jerusalem was the capital of Judea
Israel was taken into captivity in 733 B.C. by the Assyrians they were the northern Kingdom and Judea was the Southern Kingdom.the northern Israel will only be restablished when the 10 lost tribes are found according to the book of kings. When these so-called Christians saying Jesus is coming back to Israel are false, Jesus was born in Judea, and not Israel.Israel had been out of existence for almost a thousand years when Jesus was born.

a religeous historian


Kingdom which was Israel was called the 10 lost tribes of Israel. According to the Bible

Posted by: Alfred mattox at October 5, 2006 10:07 PM
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