Combs Spouts Off

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Posts Tagged ‘disproportionate response’

Religion of peace?

Posted by Richard on September 19, 2006

One thing’s become quite clear in the last few days: large portions of the worldwide Muslim community simply have no sense of irony.

The Pope quoted a 14th-century Byzantine emperor regarding Mohammed’s "command to spread by the sword the faith he preached," suggesting that Islam is not a very peaceful religion. Muslims the world over reacted by rioting, murdering a nun, calling for the Pope to be killed, burning churches, and demanding in outraged tones, "How dare you claim Islam is violent! For that, you must die!"

Events like these clearly call for a careful blend of thoughtful analysis and humor. Fortunately, Dean Barnett provided just the right mix in a post entitled FAQ – Islam Edition! Here are the first three of the twenty questions Barnett tackled:

1) Is Islam a Religion of Peace?

Well, um…No, not really.

2) So all Muslims are violent and bent on war. That’s a hateful and bigoted thing to say. You sicken me. And you’ll never carry Michigan.

That’s not what I said. You asked about Islam – I answered. You then erroneously inferred that I was speaking about all Muslims. I wasn’t. You misunderstood.

3) I don’t understand.

I know you don’t, and it’s not your fault. You’ve been poisoned by the forces of political correctness. You’re the product of a school system that valued sensitivity and self-esteem more than it valued truth and rational inquiry. As a consequence, truths which may be hurtful and disquieting will often flummox you. But you, and the legions of those like you, have to grow up.

Go read the rest. It’s a nice blend of truth and humor — not backslapping, yuck-it-up humor, mind you … it’s more grim than that. But it’s humor nonetheless, amidst some thoughtful observations.
 
UPDATE: Anne Applebaum at WaPo simply nails it:

Clearly, a handful of apologies and some random public debate — should the pope have said X, should the Danish prime minister have done Y — are ineffective and irrelevant: None of the radical clerics accepts Western apologies, and none of their radical followers reads the Western press. Instead, Western politicians, writers, thinkers and speakers should stop apologizing — and start uniting.

By this, I don’t mean that we all need to rush to defend or to analyze this particular sermon; I leave that to experts on Byzantine theology. But we can all unite in our support for freedom of speech — surely the pope is allowed to quote from medieval texts — and of the press. And we can also unite, loudly, in our condemnation of violent, unprovoked attacks on churches, embassies and elderly nuns. By "we" I mean here the White House, the Vatican, the German Greens, the French Foreign Ministry, NATO, Greenpeace, Le Monde and Fox News — Western institutions of the left, the right and everything in between. True, these principles sound pretty elementary — "we’re pro-free speech and anti-gratuitous violence" — but in the days since the pope’s sermon, I don’t feel that I’ve heard them defended in anything like a unanimous chorus. A lot more time has been spent analyzing what the pontiff meant to say, or should have said, or might have said if he had been given better advice.

All of which is simply beside the point, since nothing the pope has ever said comes even close to matching the vitriol, extremism and hatred that pour out of the mouths of radical imams and fanatical clerics every day, all across Europe and the Muslim world, almost none of which ever provokes any Western response at all. And maybe it’s time that it should: When Saudi Arabia publishes textbooks commanding good Wahhabi Muslims to "hate" Christians, Jews and non-Wahhabi Muslims, for example, why shouldn’t the Vatican, the Southern Baptists, Britain’s chief rabbi and the Council on American-Islamic Relations all condemn them — simultaneously?

Indeed, why shouldn’t they? Why haven’t they? Bravo, Anne! Thank you!
 

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Hezbollah’s human shields

Posted by Richard on July 20, 2006

At The American Thinker, Clarice Feldman pointed out a brief Ynet News story which confirmed that Neo-neocon and I (The war for public opinion) were right about Hezbollah wanting to create civilian casualties (emphasis added):

The IDF has found that Hizbullah is preventing civilians from leaving villages in southern Lebanon. Roadblocks have been set up outside some of the villages to prevent residents from leaving, while in other villages Hizbullah is preventing UN representatives from entering, who are trying to help residents leave. In two villages, exchanges of fire between residents and Hizbullah have broken out. 

Hezbollah is holding the residents of these villages hostage, using them as human shields.

"Speaking of human shields," Feldman wondered, "why aren’t the brave folks who stood between us and Saddam in Afula or Safed or Haifa or Kiryat Shemona?" Good question. I guess these "peace activists" aren’t as troubled by rockets falling on Israeli Jews as they were about bombs falling on Saddam’s Revolutionary Guard.

Regarding Hezbollah taking whole villages hostage — good luck finding any mainstream news stories that mention the IDF report. You think the IDF told only Ynet News about it? You think Ynet News made it up? I don’t.
 

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Justice requires a disproportionate response

Posted by Richard on July 19, 2006

On Tuesday, I mentioned Neo-neocon’s post about the danger of proportionality. Well, Baron Bodissey at Gates of Vienna wrote brilliantly about this nonsense of proportionality on Monday:

If you could cut through all the Kofi-speak to the heart of the matter, what do you think would be a “proportionate” response to the provocations Israel has endured? Do the Israelis have to fire Qassam rockets into Gaza at Hamas? Do Jewish kids have to strap on bomb belts and blow themselves up in Ramallah?

As someone recently said, it’s like a bank robbery — when the call comes in that three men are robbing a bank, then the cops can only send in three patrolmen to stop them.

Or imagine that you’re woken up in the middle of the night by a burglar in the living room. You grab your twelve-gauge and creep down the stairs very quietly. But when you flip on the light and surprise the burglar, he’s armed with only a knife! What do you do? Why, you drop the shotgun, rush to the kitchen, and rummage through the drawers for a knife. And not just any knife — it has to be no longer or sharper than the one the burglar has!

The contemptible blather about "disproportionate response" comes from people who refuse to distinguish between the aggressor and the victim — who remain morally neutral as to which one ought to prevail, and thus believe that "fairness" requires each to have an equal chance.

I'm a fan of disproportionate responseFor those of us who insist that there is no right to rape, mug, burgle — or murder (again!) six million Jews — the concept of proportionality of response is a moral abomination. The correct response to aggression is whatever is necessary to stop it, to punish the aggressor, and to prevent repetition of the aggression in the future. The correct response to Islamofascism is to wipe it out.

Decent people, of course, do their best to minimize harm to innocent bystanders — and the extremely low number of deaths, given the number of air strikes and artillery bombardments, makes it clear that Israel is taking extraordinary measures in this regard. Perhaps too much so.

It’s not only unwise, it’s downright wrong to stay your hand so much that the aggressor might win — or survive to prey on more victims in the future. Don’t those future victims have just as much claim on your concern as the bystanders today? More so, in my opinion, if the bystanders aren’t so innocent — and that’s certainly the case for most of the "civilian casualties" counted up by the media in southern Lebanon. These are the people who support Hezbollah, store Hezbollah weapons in their houses, and cheer on and resupply the Hezbollah fighters — likely, their brothers and sons — firing rockets from their doorsteps.

I’m joining the good Baron, and saying to our friends in Israel, "Bring on the Disproportionate Response!"

UPDATE: Welcome, visitors from The Atheist Jew — please have a look around. You may see some post titles in the left sidebar that interest you.

UPDATE 2: The latest version of the proportionality complaint, blathered about endlessly on MSM outlets on Thursday, is the disparity between the number of Israeli deaths and Lebanese deaths (which are almost all Hezbollah deaths). The morally neutral "fairness" advocates object to the fact that Israel wages war more effectively than Hezbollah!

Would these asshats like to see an international Handicapper General, a la Harrison Bergeron, reduce the effectiveness of Israel’s weapons, tactics, and troops so that they don’t have an unfair advantage over the genocidal maniacs on the other side?

If you’re not familiar with Kurt Vonnegut’s short story masterpiece, Harrison Bergeron, click that link and read it right now.
 

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