Friday, October 08, 2004
UK citizen Ken Bigley is dead, another infidel decapitated by insurgents in Iraq. A civilian engineer, Bigley came to Iraq with the idea he was helping the nation rebuild itself.
There will be all kinds of post game analysis, finger pointing and the inevitable recriminations as to how it happened and who is to blame-- as if that were really ever in question.
Ken Bigley, husband and father (I will not allow that to go unnoticed), was killed-- or rather murdered, as Sherry at Bittersweet pointedly reminds us-- by terrorists who never really intended to deal for his release. Outrageous, isn't it?
There is no problem with negotiating with terrorists. It is the kind of negotiating that makes the difference. We are not negotiating with equals, moral or otherwise.
The only kind of negotiating that must be done has to include consequences.
If hostages aren't released, or there is more terror, there will be consequences-- serious consequences. It must be understood that we will follow through on our threats.
It's that simple.
There will of course, be analogies made to Israeli tactics. So be it. The Israelis have it right. Let's examine that briefly and talk about Iraq.
The homes of Palestinian suicide bombers (and their supporters, in some cases) are blown up. Notwithstanding sophomoric media attention, there are is no equivalent to the loss of real estate to the loss of life.
In a recent poll, 70% of Palestinians voiced support for suicide bombings. That makes them accomplices, period. These bombings don't occur in a vacuum. People know that terror attacks will happen. Turning a blind eye to terror is more than implicit support-- it is direct complicity. Tim Mcveigh's cheerleader and supporter Terry Nichols knows that first hand.
Further, if the Israelis know where the terrorists are, it is inconceivable that Yasser Arafat's PA does not, or cannot find them. They seem to have the werewithal to kill those that disagree with them, but say they are unable to stop terror.
One could disregard Mr. Arafat's entire history of evil and the result would be the same. He now allows and funds terror-- and benefits from it. That he refuses to prosecute or even apprehend those who commit those vile acts, is reason enough to equate him to Osama bin Laden. There is no longer any difference between them. Arafat is a creation we had a hand in-- we allowed him a place at the table as an equal. We allowed him to be an equal and the Israelis-- Jews, lets be clear here-- are now paying for it. Those on the Left who support Arafat and company, cannot hide their bigotry behind taking a stand for the 'freedom fighters' of Palestine. That there are liberal Jews who support the Palestinian cause is of no consequence. Stupidity is a God given gift that was dispensed in equal measure to all His creatures.
The recent Israeli incursion into Gaza came as a direct result of rocket attacks on Israeli civilians. The Gaza population is now coming to understand there are direct consequences for their participation and support of terror and the Intifadah.
They wanted that Intifadah and now, they are paying for it. Until the Palestinians understand that there is a direct consequence to terror and that they too, have a role to play in suppressing terror, they will continue to suffer the consequences.
Last weekend, I wrote a long piece, entitled 'Snapshot of Islam'-- too long, I suppose for a blog-- wherin I described the reality of Islam today. Until we see clearly the position we are in and what we face, the status quo will continue.
It is no different in Iraq. Until the 'insurgents' undestand that there is a price to pay for their actions, they will continue. It is a fact of life.
The vast majority of Iraqis want freedom.
Like the Palestinians, the Iraqis must understand that freedom is a gift that must be earned. Their tacit support of the terrorists, by their inactions and unwillingness to help stamp out the evil, will disqualify them from participating in the fruits of real democracy and freedom.
Our behavior in dealing with the realities on the ground, is grist for a never ending soap opera. We are being told that the Muslim world need to be 'understood,' their 'feelings' and 'humiliations' are almost too much to bear.
It is a familiar story line. The self indulgent husband and father enchants the naive and beautiful young woman with tales of woe, suffering and lack of 'fullfilment' in an unhappy marriage. He courts her, tells her what she wants to hear..."You," he pleads to the young beauty, "you understand me like no one else, you can make whole, if only for a while..transport me, support me in my needs..." He reminds her of her lofty ideals and plays on them-- and accuses her if she questions his motives. Good natured as she is, the young woman responds.. and and so the wife and children go without and wanting, while he fulfills his 'needs.' He cares not a whit about his family and his own house. He doesn't want to put in the effort to repair and rebuild his life.
We in the west are that 'young woman.' We want to believe we can make a difference. Well, we can't and won't.
At times, the right words are spoken, but they are just words. Until there is a real effort to fix their own house, be it in Iraq or Palestine, the Muslim world will remain where it is, mired in the real quagmire of self perpetuating defeat and hatred. BunkerMulligan posted some of those words-- and is still waiting for a response.
Like the young woman in the soap opera, we cannot allow our values to be questioned by those who openly wish to take advantage of us. Until there is a real effort at change, we cannot allow them to sit at our table as equals, no matter how badlt they 'feel.'
Until we openly admit our complicity, our outrage at terror has a certain tinge of immorality.