Sunday, July 23, 2006

REACT: Three Cheers for Israel

Judging from the evening news spin and the morning talk show hosts, the Israeli government is an aggressor in attacking Hezbollah, the nation of Lebanon is being invaded and destroyed, scores of civilians are being needlessly killed, and President Bush refuses to call for a cease fire because he is secretly in cahoots with Israel. That is the media take.

Fortunately, the American public is not stupid … and least not to the point the national newsmakers would like. Even from afar, we grassroots citizens know enough to be spin-proof.

I am very sure Israel consulted with its allies, especially the U.S., before embarking on its military assault on Hezbollah. I suspect we have a clear green signal. The attack on Hezbollah is long overdue. It is a good thing. We do not want a cease fire, giving the internationally recognized terrorist group a chance to regroup and rearm. Our position is to destroy their capability to reign terror on the world.

This is a far cry from an invasion of Lebanon. The Lebanese government, itself, is at war with Hezbollah. They blame Hezbollah for this recent outbreak of warfare. They see Hezbollah as agents of Iran and Syria. The Lebanese military are ready to move in to area cleared by Israel in order to establish control of the Hezbollah region. Having just kicked out the Syrian overlords, the Lebanese government has every desire to see the insurrectionists of Hezbollah wiped out.

The deaths in warfare are always a human tragedy – civilian deaths even more so. In modern military engagements, the civilized world makes every effort to limit the injury and death of civilians. It is not always possible. On the other hand, terrorists groups, such as Hezbollah, actually target innocent civilians, slitting their throats and beheading them.

We also need to keep in mind that the fight against terrorism is not a military engagement. Terrorists ARE civilians. They are combatants masquerading as civilians. Rather than set up their operations away from civilian populations, they purposely place installations nears homes, hospitals and schools to both discourage attack and to make public relations hay out of any attack.

Unlike a civilized military, the terrorist ARE civilian women and even children. Children are taught to hate and kill from early on. Many suicide bombers are poor women and young teenagers.

While we cannot determine the culpability of any single victim, we know that not all the civilian casualties were innocents. Many were active supporters – the ones seen celebrating in the streets as the New York Trade Center collapsed or praising the deadly work of suicide bombers. They are the ones teaching their children to be the next generation of terrorists. Those who serve as a shield shall also die by the sword.

The attack on Hezbollah should not end until we are satisfied that they are destroyed – rendered incapable to serve as Iran’s and Syria’s surrogates of terrorism. To destroy Hezbollah is to partially disarm Iran and Syria.

We have a chance to show the world that terrorists cannot incubate where ever they please. They cannot lay claim to the lands of legitimate governments. They cannot engage in terrorism without paying the highest costs.

A cease-fire is not the answer. Unconditional surrender is the only acceptable outcome. We should not only NOT pressure Israel for a cease-fire, but also should support their military effort without hesitation. The only acceptable “cease fire” is when there is not a single terrorist left to pull the trigger.

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