Thu Oct 4 01:56:59 CDT 2001
it is one of the better left positions i have read but that ain't saying a
lot. Hitchens anticipates a lot of it, i think, but time will tell.
the continual digs at the Reagan administration might seem weird, but it is
just Newnam pointedly and wistfully wondering what the world would have been
like if Carter had won re-election way back when we were all younger. my
evaluation of that counterfactual is that the Cold War would still be raging
and that the United States would be losing it. but Jimmy lost.
Newnam offers multiple solution-thingies:
1: formal declaration of war
yeah, whatever. make it official. as long as the terrorists and those who
helped them die bloody. why not make it doubly democratic and hold a
nationally televised vote of America so that it is clear to the left that
more than 85% of Americans vote for Plan A: "kill them" which also sends an
unambiguous message to the loopy left: "we vote you get a clue". ooh!
Charlton Heston could reprise his "Moses" voice to deliver the results.
2: only talk the talk if you will walk the walk
fair enough. of course that means Newnam should not advocate capturing and
imprisoning the members of al-Quaida unless he is willing to do it himself.
give the man a badge, a gun, some c-rations, and a spot on the next plane to
Kabul. and he certainly should not advocate moving the US military out of
Saudi Arabia unless he is willing to do at least some of the heavy lifting
himself. give him a seat on a transport to Riyadh and some Ben-Gay. and
alternatives to oil as energy? lab coat!
perhaps the left should treat the men and women of the US military with
respect rather than with derision.
3: we are in a global guerilla war/keep in mind the prospects
a) limit exposure since we are being defensive in a guerilla war
ah! the chicken-shit strategy! or we could stop "limiting our exposure" and
go after the scumbags. kill them and do so brutally. convince would-be
terrorists that their reward will be poverty, misery, disgrace, and death.
deterrence is a better way to "limit exposure" than coweering.
b) "a graceful way out of Saudi Arabia"
ah! yes, show the world that America will respond to a terrorist attack by
blaming itself and giving the terrorists the clearest and most visible
victory. nothing better than sending the message "Osama just wanted us out
of the Holy Land of Islam. his interpretation of the Quran is correct: we
are the infidel occupiers that Mohammed inweighs Islam to fight a jihad
against. he has shown us the light by destroying the Twin Towers."
c) we need to help get positive growth in the Palestinian region
i agree. the best way to do that is to convince the Palestinians that
endless war against Israel is self-destructive and can never succeed.
d) we can't win because it is Afghanistan
nonsense. no need to occupy it and no need to do more than kill a few
thousand Taliban and their supporters.
e) communicate with the region
good idea. it would be good if the states/mullahs/imams of the region
(Iran, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia) issued fatwahs and jihads that
said: "Anyone who thinks that the United States is the great satan is a
moron. Allah will punish those heretics by making them live in societies
run under conservative interpretations of Islam. OH! and Israel shouldn't be
4: keep in mind the fallout
of course. the only real point of going to war here is the "fallout".
deter now or face a future of endless and ever-escalating terrorism which
merges into direct state hegemonic challenge of American leadership.
4': we need to be a less consumptive society
ah, yes. the 1979 campaign all over again. sheesh.
5: we need to trust democracy
i agree. the American people won't vote your way, though.
greater voice to muslim clerics? unbelievable. as if Falwell, Robertson,
and Graham wasn't enough religious lunacy, we should get more opinions from
those lost to the world? hell, why not publicize Miss Cleo's and John
Edward's and the Reverend Moon's opinions too?
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