Democrats & Liberals Archives

Someone Else's War: Israel - Lebanon vs US - Iraq

In watching the wall to wall coverage of the Israeli - Hizbullah war this week, I have found it striking in comparison to say coverage of the war in Iraq. Is it simply the difference between embedded reporters in Iraq, versus roaming reporters in Israel and Lebanon? How would people feel about the events in Iraq if there was a tenth of the attention paid to it as to the hostilities between Israel and Lebanon.

The news as I write this is that Israel has massed troops and tanks on the Lebanese border in preparation for an invasion. Lebanon (not Hizbullah) has announced they will resist an invasion.

The calls from around the world (the U.S. excluded) and the UN have called for a cease fire, and that Israel is engaging in war crimes in its attack on Lebanon.

Kofi Annan was interviewed on Larry King. He was quite clear that Israel's destruction of Lebanon's infrastructure is over the line. Further, that the Israeli offensive may well lead to the collapse of the democratically elected Lebanese government. He condemned the destruction of civilian targets and infrastructure in order to eliminate a threat that is not supported by the Lebanese government.

I could not help but think about U.S. offensives against "terrorists" and "insurgents" in Iraq. The leveling of Fallujah comes to mind. Iraq's infrastructure has also been virtually destroyed. Civilians are caught in the crossfire - if not directly targeted. Whole towns are bombed to dust and there is plenty of evidence of the use of prohibited weapons by the US - phosphorous bombs for example. This sounds very similar to the Israeli bombing of Lebanon (and Gaza).

Larry King asked Annan about how he felt Iraq impacted what was going on in Lebanon, and Annan was essentially struck speechless. He started to speak several times, and finally said that Iraq was absorbing most of the resources in the region, and that the US was fully engaged there. Annan's response was a study in not saying anything politically explosive.

So we watch the escalation of events between Lebanon and Israel, while the voices from Iraq declare that "the US government experiment has failed." Iraq, where violence has escalated to the point that there is a civil war in all but name.

Some are noting that the US has backed the Shi'ites in Iraq, and that it is Shi'ites who rule in Iran, and that Hizbullah is also a Shi'ite organization. There is talk of the possible threat of a radical Shi'ite "crescent" and how that might threaten more moderate governments in the Middle East. And there is talk of World War III. It is being framed by the pundits as an "ideological" war between "Islamists" and "Christianity" or perhaps Judeo-Christian ideology.

Purportedly, the US agenda is to spread democracy across the world - particularly the Islamic world. It would seem that it is only a democratic government if Bush says it is (or Israel). Bush called for a different government in Palestine (even though the current one was democratically elected). Israel also conflates Lebanon with Hizbullah and Palestine with Hamas and refuses to negotiate with either.

There is a significant message in the difference in reporting from Israel and Lebanon, and that from Iraq, or for that matter Afghanistan. If you think there is no censorship of the "free" press in the United States; that there is no spin and propaganda, then think again.

Posted by Rowan Wolf at July 22, 2006 10:03 AM
Comments
Comment #169711

Yes, let’s have peace at all costs! Appeasement works, well, never, but let’s keep trying!

And the UN failed to monitor the illegal importation of 13,000 Katusha rockets. Tell that to Annan.

The Blue helmets smoking cigarettes by the carton in Lebanon failed to curtail Hezbollah one iota.

Lebanon turned their cheek so much they were dizzy. Their situation is sorrowful but unfortunately they are not blameless.
Silence + inaction = consent.

Common Sense Rule #1 for Nations: If you don’t want bad things to happen to your land, you may want to kick out or imprison those people set on doing bad things.

Posted by: Ken Strong at July 22, 2006 10:50 AM
Comment #169723

Ken

Well, I was going to respond to Rowan’s post, but you said it all for me.

Rowan

Israel is correct in conflating Lebanon with Hizbullah and Palestine with Hamas and refusing to negotiate with either.

You can’t negotiate with people who believe that destroying an entire race is “divine will.”


Posted by: ulysses at July 22, 2006 11:31 AM
Comment #169737

I imagine that GWB is happier than a pig in shit with the Israel-Lebanon situation because it is taking the media attention away from Iraq.

Posted by: mark at July 22, 2006 12:54 PM
Comment #169749

7-22-06

Kurt:

I think we should spend money on our
Own country. For,Medcial,too take care of
our own people. This war is geting us no
noware.

Posted by: Kurt A Chappell at July 22, 2006 1:25 PM
Comment #169748

7-22-06

Kurt:

I think we should spend money on our
Own country. For,Medcial,too take care of
our own people. This war is geting us no
noware.

Posted by: Kurt A Chappell at July 22, 2006 1:25 PM
Comment #169747

7-22-06

Kurt:

I think we should spend money on our
Own country. For,Medcial,too take care of
our own people. This war is geting us no
noware.

Posted by: Kurt A Chappell at July 22, 2006 1:25 PM
Comment #169746

7-22-06

Kurt:

I think we should spend money on our
Own country. For,Medcial,too take care of
our own people. This war is geting us no
noware.

Posted by: Kurt A Chappell at July 22, 2006 1:25 PM
Comment #169754

Lately, I have had a hard time seeing the line between being a defender and being an aggressor. At what point are we no longer defending ourselves? At what point are we no longer distinguishable from the enemy?

Posted by: JayJay Snow at July 22, 2006 1:38 PM
Comment #169757

JayJay

The line is never all that clear because the methods tend to overlap. War is bloody and messy. We have to try to figure out if our actions will cause more blood and destruction or less. It is always a judgement call. Is it worth fighting for? Is it worth dying for? Is it worth making other people die for it?

I will also make the real point that being a great power means that you can ensure that the fighting and dying takes place someplace away from our homeland. We are willing to fight to keep that prerogative.

Some of the rightness of a cause depends on who wins. Most people willing to risk death for a cause probably believe they are right. I have no doubt that Hezbollah leaders believe in what they are doing and will not compromise, which is exactly the reason they have to be destroyed, not negotiated with.

Posted by: Jack at July 22, 2006 2:05 PM
Comment #169759

Ken Strong: Thanks you said it all. ” Silence + inaction = consent.” It is high time Americans rise up and get rid of Bushco and the rest of the war mongering imperialist thugs that have siezed our country.
Regime change starts at home.

Posted by: BillS at July 22, 2006 2:17 PM
Comment #169760

The goal in this situation would be for the Mossad to use the US troops on the ground in Iraq to attack Iran or Syria. This is something the Mossad would arrange.

Posted by: c440 at July 22, 2006 2:19 PM
Comment #169767

—- WHERE IS THE UNITED NATIONS —-
Are they a viability or useless entity?
Where is the rest of the world on the issues,
of one country destroying another with impunity?
I surely hope the citizens all over the world
wake up an make sure their leaders are taking
actions to insure the safety an well being of all
those helpless people who can’t help them selves,
against all the big Bullies where ever that may
be! As it is, seems like if there is no financial
gain, there is no physical game.

Posted by: DAVIDt at July 22, 2006 2:58 PM
Comment #169769

I think that the “reasons” for fighting determines whether the “war” is a just one or not, not necessarily “who” is doing the fighting.

There is a huge difference in the war in Iraq and the war that Isreal is now engaged in. I don’t think we should confuse the too.

Our involvement in Iraq is just plain wrong. It’s wrong on so many fronts it’s hard to begin where to start. It was started with a lie, and continues with lies and treason (Valerie Plame). No one can win this war. Not the U.S (except, maybe the private profiteering that is going on). Not the people of Iraq, (they’re embroiled in a civil war, now); and, the only win here is for the terrorists, (which were not in Iraq before we invaded).

The Isreali war is another thing, all together. They can not live in peace until the terror structures around them are defeated. Lebbonon has had 6 years to un-arm Hesbaulla (as was part of the agreement from thir last conflict with Isreal). They instead, invited the terrorists to become armed by Syria and be part of their own government. That’s not only supporting terrorism, it’s embraceing and encouraging it.

If the U.S. would have stayed out of Iraq, or at least get out of it now, and let the people there sink or swim at THEIR OWN will, then we would be in a much better position diplimatically, and militarily, to help Isreal.

As it is, we’ve crapped our bed and no one takes us seriously any more. One things for sure, turning your back on terrorists does not worked. Isreal has been doing that for over 55 years now!

Posted by: PlayNice at July 22, 2006 3:22 PM
Comment #169771

—PlayNice— Isreal has been doing better than most
countries
(with the help of America) defending itself. I would
think living there would keep a person a little
uneasy not knowing when some other group throws,
stones, bombs or what ever, I think Israel an
it’s neighbors are some times like kids throwing stones at each other, leading to more serious problems. How many thousand years will it take
before one or the other ends that religious strife.

Posted by: DAVID at July 22, 2006 3:46 PM
Comment #169777

David
So far it’s been going on for 5000yrs. It will probably be going on until this world ends.

Posted by: RAK at July 22, 2006 4:12 PM
Comment #169793

Rowan,

The calls from around the world (the U.S. excluded) and the UN have called for a cease fire, and that Israel is engaging in war crimes in its attack on Lebanon.

You must be joking. The minority are calling it war crimes on Israel’s part and they level the same accusation against Hezbollah. As for the cease-fire, Tony Blair has also expressed support for Israel’s offensive as has Canadian PM Stephen Harper. Leaders of other nations have called for restraint, not necessarily a cease-fire.

Purportedly, the US agenda is to spread democracy across the world - particularly the Islamic world. It would seem that it is only a democratic government if Bush says it is (or Israel).

Democratic elections do not make a state democratic. As others have pointed out before me on this thread, Lebanon and the UN had ample time to remove Hezbollah from the Israel-Lebanon border. Are you suggesting that Israel defer once again to the UN, which has failed them so consistently in the past?

By the way, Kofi Annan lacks the moral compass necessary to pass meaningful judgments. At this point, even the left must admit that his reign as Secretary General has been a disaster. If you have yet to reach this conclusion, you ought to get familiar with the events that have plagued the international community since 1994.

That Annan was promoted after the Rwandan genocide, during which time he was undersecretary, should have alerted the world to the Hell we would face in the ensuing years.

Posted by: Dr Politico at July 22, 2006 5:31 PM
Comment #169817

David,

How long? Good question. If you understand the history of the area, you’ll understand that when Isreal was given to the Jews as a “nation” sum 55 years ago, or so, there were roughly the same amount of Jews living in the area already, and about the same or equal amount of “Palistinians”. (Some 50 thousand to 100 thousand of each group). And these two groups were living, working and worshipping together, side by side in peace. Since then, about 2-4 times that number of Arab Millitants or “terrorists” have moved into the area with the direct agenda to cause problems with Isreal. To question Isreal’s rights to the land.

My position in that reguard, is that to re-think this arrangement, (in giving Isreal to the Jews as a “homeland” after WWII) is like re-thinking the Indian/American wars. Should we give this land back to the American Indians? Heaven forbid. Should the Jews leave Isreal and give the land back to the Palistinians (alone), heaven forbid. It’s a done deal. Certain factions want to turn the clock back, and get rid of Isreal. This will never, ever happen ,,,,, EVER!

It’s time for this nonscense to end. When will it end? When all Arab nations and sects, “get over” the facts. Isreal belongs to Isreal, and Arabs have the rest of the Mid East, (some 540 times more area, than Isreal to settle in).

When will it end???? When trouble makers in the area, just learn to “get over it” !!!

If Arab interests can’t get over it, then this will go on for amother 5,000 years (or so).

Posted by: PlayNice at July 22, 2006 8:12 PM
Comment #169862

Playnice et al; Your comparison with the Indian genocide is not particularly apt unless you are refering to the period in that conflict when the US would ceed land by treaty (as long as the grass shall grow…etc.) and then decide we wanted it after all. It was also nothing to be proud of.
Isreal will last forever? Forever is long time. Without US backing they will not and there may well come a time when the the US is unwilling or unable to provide that support. Countries rise and fall. For Isreal to last forever at some point they must find a way to get along with their nieghbors.Just look at a map. It would be like your county being at war with your whole state. You might hold out for a time but sooner or later you would fall.
It would help for Isreal to become secular. A state where Jews are safe certainly but a state where others are also. Jewish culture would survive. They have survived worse. They should get rid of apartied. Did you know Isreal does not recognize a marriage between an Arab and a Jew? That is no way to get along.

Posted by: BillS at July 22, 2006 10:52 PM
Comment #169864

—-PlayNice—I think after all those years, the parties involved could have figured out a way
too get along together, hopefully they will be
able to make and follow their own destinies away
from the thousands of years of violence. I do not
believe any physical barrier would work an that leaves many weeks of marathon debates an discussion.

Posted by: DAVID at July 22, 2006 11:05 PM
Comment #169924

DAVID

Again, you can’t negotitate with someone who believes that destroying Israel is the will of Allah.

It’s not a matter of just putting aside their differences.

As long as radical Islamists such as Hezbolah, Hamas and alQueda exist, Israel and Israeli citizens will not be allowed to live in peace.

BillS

Israel must find a way to get along with their neighbors?? Israel has made concession after concession in an effort to make peace. And where has it gotten them?

The only thing Israel could do to “get along with their neighbors” is to follow the lead of the zealots at Masada.


Posted by: ulysses at July 23, 2006 11:19 AM
Comment #169927

BillS;

My reference to the American Indian conflict was in connection to the fact that the outcome was decided and put to rest a long time ago. Expecting the “Americans” to leave America now, and turn it back over into Indian hands, is about as unlikely as expecting the Jews to leave Isreal and turn it back over into Arab hands. It’s not going to happen. And in my opinion, it shouldn’t, either. Isreal took a burned out hunk of desert and turned it into a thriving, vibrant, living area of prosperity. If Palistine wanted to do the same thing to their area of the world? No one is stopping them.


Isreal will last forever?

Yes. You’d better hope and pray, pray very hard, that it does. ‘Cause if it doesn’t?????? We’re next.

It would help for Isreal to become secular?
That’s not likely to happen. It’s about as likely as every last Arab state/country becomming secular. I don’t see that a possibility either. (And, being “secular” didn’t work too well for Iraq now, did it?).

Did you know Isreal does not recognize a marriage between an Arab and a Jew?

Jew’s do not recognise any marriage between a Jew and non-Jew. That doesn’t seam to instill a mind-set of war between Christians and Jews. I don’t see this as a legitamite requiorment for peace between Jew and Arab (or Jew and Christian). Do you?

That is no way to get along.

Yes there is. I’ve seen the first glimmer of it in this current conflict. People in Lebonnon are saying that they are mad at Isreal, sure. But also, they recognise that Isreal was provoked by Hezbulla also, and they are angry at them too. Maybe this will be the Arab wake-up call that the world needs. If these terrorists groups could be recognised as the snakes that they are, then peace could be possiable. If Arab governments would stop supporting these devisive groups, then maybe, just maybe, peace……real peace, could come to the Mid-East, at last.

Posted by: PlayNice at July 23, 2006 11:46 AM
Comment #169933

PlayNice

Could you please explain further why you think that if Israel falls the U.S. would go next. How does Israel protect the U.S.? To me it seems quite a jump, going from the fall of a small country in the Middle East directly to the end of the U.S.

Posted by: mark at July 23, 2006 12:16 PM
Comment #169936

DAVID;

Hopefully they will be able to make and follow their own destinies away from the thousands of years of violence.

Actually, Arabs and Jews did occupy the same area (you may call it Isreal, Palistine, or Arab territories, whatever…) for thousands of years, in peace. Living, working, praying, side by side, in towns, villages; without any meaningful form of disagreement(s). After Isreal was given to the Jews as a nation, even then, there was an era of peace between Arabs and Jews. Then, surrounding Arab Nations sponcered hate groups that got a foot-hold in “Palistine”, with the express purpose of distroying Isreal and taking back the “land”. The 1967 War was supposed to accomplish this. It didn’t. Since then, Isreal has been engaged in treaties to “give back the land” (won in that war), for “peace”. Yet, peace, true peace, has failed to come to Isreal. If you want to ask why Isreal can not live in peace? And, if you are asking Isreal? Then my friend, you’re asking the wrong people.

I do not believe any physical barrier would work and that leaves many weeks of marathon debates and discussion.

Neither will bring “peace” to Isreal. In 1998, President Clinton (the Pres. Repugs love to hate) at Camp David, along with the Prime Minister of Isreal, offered Arrafat everything that he said he wanted. A seperate State, recognised by the rest of the world, it’s own government, lands, self-rule, even monies for “reconstruction”. The only things asked in return was to recognise Isreals right to exhist, recognising Isreals soviernty and to stop the attacks against Isreal. This proposal was sumarily turned down. At that point, it became quite clear that the surrounding nations did not want “peace”, but the complete & utter distruction of Isreal. Now we look back, some 8 years later, why did we think that anything has changed, … since then?

A barrier is at least something. If any country wants to live in close proximetry to Isreal, then it has to want to live in peace. If it doesn’t, then Isreal is intitled to a barrier of protection. It’s not rocket science, here.

As to discussions, what is that supposed to accomplish? The only discussion that will satisfy Arab interests is the complete and utter distruction of Isreal. Unless you’re proposing that, I don’t see where any further
“discussions” (or land give-a-ways), are relavant.

Posted by: PlayNice at July 23, 2006 12:48 PM
Comment #169937

Mark,

Surely, you can’t be serious?

Posted by: PlayNice at July 23, 2006 12:50 PM
Comment #170008

Rowan,

When I read your article 30+ hours ago for the first time I had no intelligent comment other than, “great article Rowan”. Well, I still can only say great article.

As I watch things unfold in Lebanon and Israel, and I listen to the “talking heads” here in the states I keep asking myself one sickening question:

How can any attempt at diplomacy be regarded as “useless” or “hopeless”? Are words more precious than human lives? What is the American message?

I just don’t get Bush diplomacy. Is there such a thing? It has seemed to me that America has tried to some degree for decades to keep the “lid from blowing off the pressure cooker” and now I truly get the feeling that we want to just let ‘er blow so we can finally remodel the damn kitchen.

I’m just truly lost in the BS right now.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at July 23, 2006 4:55 PM
Comment #170040

Here’s a collection of real user-generated videos from both sides of the coflict…

http://warzone-video.magnify.net/

Posted by: Steve at July 23, 2006 7:03 PM
Comment #170049

Keeping the “lid from blowing off the pressure cooker” is what has kept the cycle of violence going. Stopping a war halfway makes further war inevitable.
The Muslims don’t want a peace that includes the existence of Israel. The only way they will leave Israel alone is if they know they will be destroyed if they attack.
The definition of stupidity is to repeat an action expecting a different result. Diplomacy has been repeatedly tried and the Muslims have repeatedly shown that they don’t want peace. Theirs is a religion of hate, intolerence, brutality and war. It’s all they understand and all that they respect. They see diplomacy as weakness and are emboldened by it.

Posted by: traveller at July 23, 2006 8:28 PM
Comment #170050

Keeping the “lid from blowing off the pressure cooker” is what has kept the cycle of violence going. Stopping a war halfway makes further war inevitable.
The Muslims don’t want a peace that includes the existence of Israel. The only way they will leave Israel alone is if they know they will be destroyed if they attack.
The definition of stupidity is to repeat an action expecting a different result. Diplomacy has been repeatedly tried and the Muslims have repeatedly shown that they don’t want peace. Theirs is a religion of hate, intolerence, brutality and war. It’s all they understand and all that they respect. They see diplomacy as weakness and are emboldened by it.

Posted by: traveller at July 23, 2006 8:29 PM
Comment #170083

playnice

Hell yes I’m serious. Is that the only answer you can come up with.

Posted by: mark at July 23, 2006 10:31 PM
Comment #170085

“Keeping the “lid from blowing off the pressure cooker” is what has kept the cycle of violence going. Stopping a war halfway makes further war inevitable.”

traveller,

Thanks for saying that. So, every time there’s a problem we should just “blow things all to hell”? I’ve always thought the hope was to keep the “lid from blowing off” until a combination of education and even a short term peace could allow a “cooling down” period so everyone could learn to live and let live.

Of course Bush & co. blew that whole idea to crap when we invaded Iraq and WOW that’s been a raging success hasn’t it? Evidently you agree with the whole Bush plan for peace, which is? Scorched Earth syndrome?

When are the deaths of humans cheaper than the words of negotiation? even if diplomacy fails the bombs are still just as potent, can you say the same of words after bombs?

While Bush is hardly 100% responsible he’s done very little to mitigate the damage in Lebanon or for that matter the damage to our international image. What’s up with North Korea? Ah, can’t worry about that now! GW has to get his ZZZZZ’s in!

I think Bush hopes to accelerate the war in the Middle East & when you factor in how badly overextended our ground troops are now there can only be one reason and that is to bring on Armageddon sooner rather than later. And, before you ask, yeah, I really do think Bush is that freakin’ nuts! Looney tunes! He’s still around but his brain left the planet years ago!

I hope I’m wrong.

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at July 23, 2006 10:32 PM
Comment #170089

Isn’t it about time for GWB to go on vacation?

Posted by: mark at July 23, 2006 10:38 PM
Comment #170135

Traveler;

Very well said, I agree completely!

KCDem;

Bush Co’s foreign policy’s aren’t that hard to understand. Just take every word uttered since he has entered the white house and mean the opposite; or, at the very least, mean the same thing; but, limited exclusively for the very few (or, only for a special few). Bingo….You’ve got his whole agenda.

Mark;

Yes, I mean exactly that … “we are next”.

Do you actually think that fundamentalist Muslim hatred is directed only towards Isreal, or Jews? Don’t be nieve. Muslim extremists have many enemys that they do not want to share this world with. Jews, Christians, non-believers or any kind, any one that is not a Muslim, any Muslim that is not a religious zelot (or Muslim enough). This pretty much knocks out some 90% of the whole world. Do you really think that if every last Jew was wipped out from the face of the earth tomorrow, that this would quell the blood thirst by Muslim extremests?

Please, they don’t even like fellow Muslims because they are not “Muslim enough”. What exactly, do you think a “Holy War”, is? They don’t care if they kill Jews, Americans, Italians, Austrailians, Christians, or fellow Muslims….they don’t give a damn. (Don’t you think that there were Muslims in the Twin Towers?)

I remember just after 9/11, when I went on line to another chat room. I remember this one paticular woman from Austrailia who said that she thought that “the U.S. was “just asking for it anyway”. After all it’s not like they attacked America, they only hit the most prominent financial area in one small corrupt city. And, after you look at how the U.S. keeps foreign governments down, and you take into account the Crusades, you can’t really blame the “poor Muslims” for their attack on N.Y.” She said that she “worked with a very nice Muslim man that was so devout, so nice, such a Holy man of principal.” She said that if I got to know these people that I too would feel differently. No matter what I said, I could not diswade her. After all, it was not happening to them…

Months later in Bali a bomb from a terrorist group went off in a night club, killing some 25 to 30 vacationing Austrailian tourists and students. I often wondered if her tone had changed after that event. Since then terrorist attacks have gone off in Italy and across the globe. I am sure that people from all over the world had or have a mind-set like this woman from Austrailia. I wonder if they get the point now, or if they too are still living in the dark about terrorism? If they too only think that it’s a Muslim/Jewish problem.

There is only one way to kill terrorism. You can’t allow it! You can’t tolerate it! You can’t support it! You can’t reward it! And, you sure as hell, can’t discuss it! Terrorists don’t bargin. And, they don’t stop.

We stopped a form of terrorism in this country. Why doesn’t the Klan hang blacks from trees any more? We don’t allow it. It’s not done. We won’t accept it. It’s not sociably acceptable. Why are there no more furnaces in foreign countries who shovel Jew’s into a firery grave? We don’t allow it! It’s not acceptable! It isn’t done!

When the Muslim Countries that are harboring, supporting and encourageing these extremists are “tired of this crap”, (when it’s no longer in their best interest) then, and only then, will this situation change.

And, if it doesn’t? I say….blow ‘um all to hell!

Posted by: PlayNice at July 24, 2006 2:42 AM
Comment #170138

—PlayNice—I agree that a wall may keep two legged bombers out of Israel although I do not believe as
you may have noticed no wall kept some 100 missiles out
of Israel. I have no desire to have a war of of
words with any one, I do however think it is possible to put a few collective heads together
an discuss probable solutions for a complex an
serious problem facing Israel an the surrounding
area. Any way, try giving this problem some good critical thought an forget the negative posturing
an you might feel better knowing you have as least
given a peace process for a different, far away
place that could really use some kind of safety
net. an true understanding.

Posted by: DAVID at July 24, 2006 3:14 AM
Comment #170139

DAVID,

OK, you want to talk about positive solutions. And, what would those be? What “positive solutions” to world peace would you suggest, that have not been tried in the last 58 years?

Posted by: PlayNice at July 24, 2006 3:56 AM
Comment #170150

PS

But before you get carried away with your peace talks, you might find it helpful to go to this site and see how Muslims feel about peace talks:

Pay special attention to Artical 13. (This is the section that talks about “peace talks” and conferences).

http://www.fas.org/irp/world/para/docs/880818.htm

Posted by: PlayNice at July 24, 2006 5:58 AM
Comment #170151

—-PlayNice—I am very aware of what both sides think an what they have done to each other for the
past 100 years. I am now trying to discover
what others can offer, Right now I have two solution, one you would not want to hear the other,
Needs a few missing parts, Do you know what happened when two bald headed guys put there heads
together/////////////////////

They made an ass of them selves—

Smile things have to get better!

Posted by: DAVID at July 24, 2006 6:14 AM
Comment #170160

play nice

You still haven’t answered the question. For the sake of arguement, let’s agree that hard core muslims want to kill 90% of the world’s population, as you say. How do they do that? How do they wipe out the entire U.S.? How does Israel protect the U.S. and the rest of the world from annihilation?

I’ve have never said we should stand by and do nothing, but we(and Israel and everyone else) must stop doing things that create more terrorist. When we fight terrorism with violence and kill and injure more innocent civilians than we do terrorist we create more than we do away with. We need to find a better way if there is any chance for this to end. In the meantime I fail to see that if Israel falls the U.S. is next. We may be attacked again(GWB doesn’t want you to forget that) but I don’t think you need to allow yourself to be played into thinking that “the end is near”.

Posted by: mark at July 24, 2006 7:41 AM
Comment #170162

playnice

Interesting that you post the Hamas platform as interpreted by an Israeli.

Posted by: mark at July 24, 2006 7:46 AM
Comment #170168

Mark,
Interesting that you question the source rather than the validity.

Posted by: PlayNice at July 24, 2006 7:54 AM
Comment #170169

I agree with Mark and will quote myself from a different thread:

“Basically, our military force is above-excellent at fighting army-to-army (great utility of force) but inept at countering the enemy tactic of using terrorism/guerilla warfare, let alone the (re)building of nations per our chosen values.”

We still have not adapted militarily to this post-industrial warfare era and continue to use our military strenght. Hence we are losing the “utility of our force” in a war against terrorists/guerillas, together with billions of $ squandered in pushing the military in the wrong direction.

Basically, we are only creating invoices for the defense contractors and breeding new terrorists by demonising ourselves through our “collateral damage”.

“One scholar, citing the US Strategic Bombing Survey, wrote:

The (Tokyo) fire convinced the Japanese lower classes, as no propaganda ever could, that surrender was, indeed, out of the question and that Americans really were demons bent on exterminating all Japanese.”

http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/apj/apj97/win97/parrin.html

Posted by: Josh at July 24, 2006 7:57 AM
Comment #170170

David,
You have two solutions in mind? what are they?

Posted by: PlayNice at July 24, 2006 7:57 AM
Comment #170204

IMO the political situation in Iraq is getting way out of hand by the way.

Last week the speaker of the Iraqi parliament accused “Jews” of financing acts of violence in Iraq in order to discredit Islamists who control the parliament and government so they can install their “agents” in power.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060713/ap_on_re_mi_ea/iraq_israel

This weekend he was calling “what has been done in Iraq (is) a kind of butchery of the Iraqi people”.

http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/07234B82-C3F3-4F27-B401-8BC50A43F541.htm

I guess he’s not really helping us “winning the hearts and minds of the Iraqi people”…

Posted by: Josh at July 24, 2006 10:53 AM
Comment #170208

Kansas Dem,
We and Israel are in a conflict with zealots whose history shows that they absolutely will not “live and let live”. Their religion forbids it. They show a face of conciliation when they are in a position of weakness but revert to their violent, intolerant ways when they think they have the strength, as the Koran and Hadiths instruct.
Our enemies only understand and respect strength and war. They see attempts at diplomacy as signs of weakness.
You pacifists are trying to project western values onto Islamic culture.
Western civilization is in the greatest danger it has been in since the jihad was turned back at the gates of Vienna. What we are facing isn’t some new threat that came about because of the founding of the modern state of Israel. It is a continuation of the jihad that has been ongoing since Mohammed started it in 622.
It is the refusal of the left to see the truth about the evil, violent nature of Islam that has brought us to this point.

Posted by: traveller at July 24, 2006 11:09 AM
Comment #170213

traveler,
I am not sure what expertise you speak from to state that those who follow Islam are violent and only understand war and strength, and that Islam is inherently evil.

Islam, Judaism, and Christianity all come from the same “root.” That is why each of the peoples following these religions are called “People of the Book.” That book is the Old Testament.

Labeling Islam as violent and evil, is a claim that could equally be made of Christianity - “Onward Christian soldiers, marching as to war.”

Further, as a sociologist, I can authoritatively state that there is no “Islamic” culture any more than there is a “Christian” culture. Culture in this context occurs within the boundaries of a society. Religion (such as Islam, Christianity, etc) also takes its place within those societal boundaries. Therefore, there are cultural differences between say Christianity in the United States, versus Christianity in Guatemala, versus Christianity in Vietnam. The same is true of Islam (or any other society spanning religion).

Where crusader rhetoric, and broad brush labeling of an entire religion (or group) becomes problematic, is when a conflict becomes framed through these opposing dichotomous categories. Then people feel their survival is threatened because they hold a certain religion.

Interestingly, you refer to Islam as a threat to “western civilization,” and not to “Christianity.” This points to a certain truth I think was not intended. That is that it is the hegemony of “western civilization” that may be the perceived threat, and not “Christianity.” Therefore, the base complaint is likely not be religious, but cultural and societal imposition.

Religion - including Christianity - has been used to rally populations to act and to provide a moral grounding for centuries. That does not mean that the issues are religious. It just means that religion is being utilized to ground the conflict. That seems to be what al Qaeda is doing, and what the Christian religious extreme is doing in the US.

Posted by: Rowan Wolf at July 24, 2006 11:38 AM
Comment #170221

playnice

I thought it was obvious, when a source is questioned(such as “consider the source”), so is the validity of what that source is saying.

Not going to answer my questions,huh?

Posted by: mark at July 24, 2006 12:09 PM
Comment #170223

Josh

Well said, you put it better than I.

Posted by: mark at July 24, 2006 12:11 PM
Comment #170269

“Religion - including Christianity - has been used to rally populations to act and to provide a moral grounding for centuries. That does not mean that the issues are religious. It just means that religion is being utilized to ground the conflict. That seems to be what al Qaeda is doing, and what the Christian religious extreme is doing in the US.”

Rowan,

You explained that very, very well. Better than I ever could, and I’ve really tried.

My hat’s off to you.

KansasDem


Posted by: KansasDem at July 24, 2006 3:18 PM
Comment #170273

Rowan Wolf,
Islam does not come from the same root as Judaism and Christianity.
Mohammed knew some of the stories of the Bible and incorporated them into his religion along with elements of the pagan religion of Mecca, where he got the name for his god. (al-lah, or allah; meaning “the god”, the name of the moon god of the Meccan pantheon; in the Haj the pilgrims duplicate the pagan ritual) He made up the phrase “People of the Book” to try to attract the Jews of Medina to his new religion.

“Labeling Islam as violent and evil, is a claim that could equally be made of Christianity - “Onward Christian soldiers, marching as to war.””

That isn’t true. Those who do evil in the name of Christ violate his teachings. Those who do evil in the name of Islam follow Mohammed’s teachings and his example; he was a mass murderer and a pedophile. (btw-Onward Christian Soldiers is a song about the Crusades, which were a series of attempts to retake the Holy Land from the Muslims who had conquered it in a series of bloody wars and were persecuting Christians)

There definitely is an Islamic culture. Islam claims to trancend all societal boundaries and replace all cultures it dominates. It is rooted in the ancient Arabic culture and based on Sharia.

“Interestingly, you refer to Islam as a threat to “western civilization,” and not to “Christianity.” This points to a certain truth I think was not intended. That is that it is the hegemony of “western civilization” that may be the perceived threat, and not “Christianity.” Therefore, the base complaint is likely not be religious, but cultural and societal imposition.”

The difference is clear and intended. Mohammed proclaimed Arabic culture superior to all others and demanded that his followers destroy all non Arabic, non Islamic cultures. That’s why there is no art in Islam and the Taliban destroyed those Buddhist sculptures on that hillside in Afghanistan.

“That does not mean that the issues are religious. It just means that religion is being utilized to ground the conflict.”

From a western perspective that’s true. From an Islamic perspective it cannot be as there is no separation of church and state. The church IS the state.

Posted by: traveller at July 24, 2006 3:24 PM
Comment #170274

“You pacifists are trying to project western values onto Islamic culture.”

Traveller,

So what is Bush’s goal in Iraq if not to “project western values onto Islamic culture”? You paint a pretty broad stroke with the label “pacifist”.

Should our goal be to kill all followers of Islam?
If not “all” then how many?

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at July 24, 2006 3:27 PM
Comment #170288

Kansas Dem,

The invasion and occupation of Iraq is a monumental strategic blunder.

I don’t know what the solution is. Right now we have two choices. War or submission. Fight for our civilization and way of life or passively submit to its destruction. Fight to remain as free as possible or submit to a merciless totalitarian ideology.

Diplomacy has been tried repeatedly and failed. Intervention and stopping short of victory has been tried repeatedly and failed. Attempts to “learn to live and let live” have been tried repeatedly and failed.
The time for talk is past. The time for action is upon us. We don’t want war but that doesn’t matter. War has been thrust upon us. Wishful thinking won’t change it.

Posted by: traveller at July 24, 2006 4:09 PM
Comment #170306

BillS,

Your Moorism: “It is high time Americans rise up and get rid of Bushco and the rest of the war mongering imperialist thugs that have siezed our country. Regime change starts at home.” continues to prove to me that the extreme left thrives among democrats.

But to answer you directly, yes, I think it would be better to have a Clinton, or a Johnson, or a Kennedy, or a Truman, or a FDR. They are not imperialist war mongerers … well, as long as you discount Bosnia, Vietnam, near Nuclear War over the Cuban Missile Crisis, Korea, dropping the Atomic Bomb, and attacking Nazi Germany before they attacked us. Yes, you’re right! Let’s close our borders (except for the Mexican border of course), just sit here and hope for the best. Excellent plan BillS!!!

Posted by: Ken Strong at July 24, 2006 4:59 PM
Comment #170329

as for how they will gain peace, i don’t know.
but what i do know is isreal blonged to the jews, it was taken from them, the had no home for 5000 yrs, we make a deal and give it back and know people are trying to take it again.

that’s bullshit, it’s their land, and they should fight tooth and nail to keep it.

Posted by: steve at July 24, 2006 6:31 PM
Comment #170468

(I posted this in another thread but think it applies here as well)

traveller wrote:

“The invasion and occupation of Iraq is a monumental strategic blunder.

I don’t know what the solution is. Right now we have two choices. War or submission. Fight for our civilization and way of life or passively submit to its destruction. Fight to remain as free as possible or submit to a merciless totalitarian ideology.”

———————————————————————

I don’t agree.

Imo the political facts as well as anecdotal evidence from the field have already proven that a major strategic policy is needed immediately. This as the utility of applying our military forces in Iraq is getting worse by the day due to the current political constellation.

We are stuck in the middle between Israel and the muslem world. A lot of people say that Bush and Co absolutely love a good Israeli-Lebanese/Hezbollah conflict “because it takes our eyes away from Iraq”. Should they be really extremely short-sighted (which I don’t think they are) and only focus on domestic politics… ok, but the U.S. just got outplayed by Iran on the Iraq situation. By stirring up the Israeli conflict Iran forced us to openly take sides with Israel. Result: political chaos in Bagdad and anti-American rethorics galore. Basically Israel versus Lebanon/Hezbollah created a very bad mid to longer-term situation in Iraq for us if you ask me.

I am not advocating to “cut and run” at all, but to engage in diplomacy as soon as possible to put together a true international “coalition of the willing peacekeepers and nation rebuilders”.

We can not do it alone without suffering too much damage for too little yield, damage both in terms of solders KIA or injured and to our international reputation.

We can not just cut and run and leave the situation to the democratically elected Iraqi government, as militias would completely take over Iraqi political and basic daily life and the country would become a hotbed for extremism under the wings of big brother Iran.

Still, I refuse to call this adapting to “the fog of war”, as it was announced in numerous official documents, books, analyses. etc. - a long time ago. Admitting you were wrong and employing an open UN coalition - instead of bashing the institution - might be the only way “out”.


Posted by: Josh at July 25, 2006 8:08 AM
Comment #170486

BTW: Even our Saudi “allies” seem to be unconvinced of eventual Israeli-Lebanese/Hezbollah peace. Not a good starting point for attaining regional stability if you ask me.

“If the option of peace fails as a result of Israeli arrogance, then the only option remaining will be war, and God alone knows what the region would witness in a conflict that would spare no one,” the Saudi king said in a statement read on state TV.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,205378,00.html

Posted by: Josh at July 25, 2006 9:20 AM
Comment #170517

Mark,

I would love to answer your question.

What’s the bloody question? (s)?

Traveler,

Where ever you got your information BTW,
I agree with you completely, nice to know that there is someone else in the world that has a brain, and recognises this for what it is. For a min. there, … I thought I was alone.

Thanks!

Posted by: PlayNice at July 25, 2006 11:20 AM
Comment #170748

Hi everyone. I’m only 13 and i want so much stuff but if i got 1 wish i would with that there would be no war. I’m actually crying right now because my family lives in israel and i don’t want them to get hurt. Why is there war? It’s so bad and people who are loved by others get killed. If someone that i love and care about dies i would be devistated. The world should be at peace not war. If i was able to control the world it would be awesome and people would actually like living. Why do we have war, sure its great to win but the things we do to win…its wrong. We shouldn’t fight anymore we should all just be friends don’t hate eachother appreciate. You only live once and you should be able to enjoy life but how can you do that while theres a war. We should just stop, just stop and be friends…forever.

Posted by: Leetal at July 26, 2006 9:32 AM
Comment #171017

Leetal wrote:

“Why do we have war”

——————————————————————-

I’m sad to say that it is actually quite simple.

People have warred over strategic (natural) resources or production facilities for ages, “for the benefit of our people”.

People have been dragged into war for political reasons. Almost every clear-thinking philosopher has concluded that it the simplest way to “strengthen the base” is to war against some sort of vile evil enemy, “rallying behind the flag”.

People have been warring each other for ages over their religions and values, trying to force them on other people over their own religions/values “driven by God”.

And sometimes people war for a combination of the above, making it seem that your actually fighting for values/religion while it is more for domestic political and international geostrategic purposes.

Sad but true.

PS: That is why the United Nations should be actively supported and reformed by its biggest member, the U.S., instead of misused, abused and sabotaged.

Posted by: Josh at July 27, 2006 4:12 AM
Comment #171876

This planet would be better off without religion. No one is correct. No one religion is the “right” religion. There was one set of events that happened and everyone made up their own stories.

Maybe the Koran does promote peace. Tell that to all those suicide bombers. Once again, people interpret it for their own agenda. Every religious whacko is just a hypocritical SOB. If People would be more concerned with making their current life more enjyoable, they wouldn’t need to kill themselves to have those 40 virgins. I mean come on. What better way to have some desparate young horny man kill himself and others so he can get laid. Bunch of dumbasses.

Posted by: PO'd at July 29, 2006 8:08 PM
Comment #175154

There are 2 billion people on the earth who worship Jesus Christ. Many of these people are deeply religious, most are deeply faithful, all know that Jesus is Lord. It is the fool who say’s “There is no God”

Point: There are no Christian terrorists, because if one uses terror as a weapon, they are not Christ followers.

There are many Muslim Terrorists, there are Sikh Terrorists, and Terrorists from other cults.

The Muslims seem to exfoliate terror, they live it, breathe and share it with the rest of the world.

The world would not be better off without religion, that is retarded. It is a belief in God that has kept humans alive till now.

Posted by: Ty at August 12, 2006 4:45 PM
Comment #175229

Ty,
Sorry, but Christians can be terrorists. I do believe that Timothy McVeigh was a Christian, as are those who have bombed abortion clinics and killed doctors who provide reproductive services. There are also three Christians waiting for sentencing in Indonesia right now for an attempt to bomb Muslims.

Saying that if Christians engage in terrorism they are not Christians is convenient, but equally applied to anyone. Muslims who engage in terrorism are not Muslims. Americans who engage in terrorism are not Americans. How tidy it all is. The reality is that in any given population you will have those who will engage in violence. That does not mean that the whole group is that way.

Posted by: Rowan Wolf at August 13, 2006 1:02 AM
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