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Terrorists Followed Media Violence Script

Another response to Terrorists Followed Media Violence Script:

>> Then what was the TV series MASH based on? The Korean peace teach-ins? <<

I didn't say we didn't go to war in the cases listed. I said war didn't ultimately solve the problem.

>> Every day we had troops there was one day less those Viet-Cong Stalinists weren't in power. <<

See my answer above. And you probably should avoid double negatives like the one you wrote above.

>> Pacifism against Winston Churchill and Lyndon Johnson stands a better chance of success than if it is applied to Adolph Hitler or Osama bin Laden. <<

1) How do you know? That's sheer speculation.

2) As Robert Scheer pointed out in his 12/4/01 column, we labeled most of our recent enemies "evil"—to whip up hatred against them and obfuscate the truth. But we defeated the biggest "evil" of the last half-century, the Soviet Union (aka the "Evil Empire"), without going to war. Ronald Brownstein has written the war against terrorism is likely to be more of a "cold war."

Even Bush is saying this "war" will be different, as he announces freezing the assets of more alleged supporters of terrorism. In other words, this war will be largely a non-war. But if it makes you feel good to think of an diplomatic, economic, and intelligence campaign as a "war," by all means do so.

>> Which was won after The Greatest President Since Abraham Lincoln took over and started rebuilding our military. <<

I don't think President Franklin D. Roosevelt did that much to defeat communism. He was too busy rescuing us from the Depression, the greatest crisis since the Civil War.

Or did you mean President Mikhail Gorbachev, who earned the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts?

Whatever, the USSR's defeat didn't require war or even violence. My point stands.

>> South Africa had things (sports teams, industry, resources) to sanction. Afghanistan doesn't. <<

Sanctions are only one way to pressure an opponent nonviolently. And I'm pretty sure Afghanistan is dependent on foreign aid for much of its basics. Sanctions similar to the sanctions against Iraq, preventing the import of goods, might've had some effect.

>> See: Cold War against the USSR <<

See my response. A nonviolent campaign produced a nonviolent result again.

>> Israel still exists because of its military and its willingness to use it. c.f. Six Day's War, Yom Kippur War, etc. <<

No, it exists because the US keeps propping it up with $3.5 billion a year. Israel's willingness to use its military hasn't done jack to establish lasting peace.

>> Try threat of (continued) violence <<

A threat to use violence isn't violence itself. It's more moral than violence because it doesn't harm anyone directly. In other words, threats are part of my argument, not yours, thank you very much.

>> There wasn't that much diplomacy involved in Desert Storm. <<

I'd say there was enough. There was a lot more than Dubya offered with his sham approach to the Taliban.

>> And I don't recall much diplomacy involving the KLA before Clinton decided to rehabilitate them. <<

Years of diplomacy on all the Balkan conflicts preceded our decision to intervene. We're not at war with the KLA and I'm not sure the KLA is at war with anyone else, so that's a non sequitur.

Once again, Clinton's Balkan strategy was supported by a bipartisan majority in Congress and Bush has continued it unchanged. If you have a problem with the KLA today, here's a news flash for you: George W. Bush has been in charge for almost a year. Try addressing that fact rather than harping on your love/hate relationship with Clinton.

In case you hadn't noticed, I've criticized the misguided bombing in Bosnia, Sudan, and Iraq, among other places. Clinton was president during those times, so I'm blaming him for his role in killing people. Do I need to spell out who's president every time I mention a 20th-century event so you'll realize it's a bipartisan critique?

Really, you need to get your head out of your Bible and read what I write. You're the only fanatic who worships his party as if it were a golden calf. I've criticized Clinton for his pandering and sexual shenanigans, Gore for his woodenness and bad campaigning, Nader for throwing the election, Condit for his hypocrisy, et al. You're the one who gives a free pass to the liars and hypocrites in your party, not me.

>> Were we obligated to undertake a major diplomatic initiative post Pearl Harbor? <<

It wouldn't have hurt. I don't know the history of WW II, but we negotiated with Japan until Pearl Harbor, while they were conquering or terrorizing other countries. I wouldn't be surprised if diplomatic efforts with Germany and Japan continued throughout the war.

Of course, the situations were slightly different. Japan was an empire seeking worldwide dominion. Bin Laden and Al Qaeda are a small group of terrorists acting out their fantasies under the auspices of the Taliban government. I'm not sure what we could've offered Japan, but clearly we had leverage to use against the Taliban.

The unfolding conflict continues to give us examples of the Taliban negotiating—their surrender, if nothing else. That's proof the Taliban aren't fanatics unwilling or unable to discourse rationally. Bush and the conservative media have done a fine job of spreading propaganda to counter this uncomfortable fact.

It also raises an issue you warmongers have yet to grasp—that many levels of diplomacy are possible. Apparently, when you hear the word "diplomacy," your apelike minds shut off in a red haze of bloodlust. Let me help you with an explanation I wrote for another correspondent:

  • Negotiations with Bin Laden and Al Qaeda: Worth a try, but probably pointless.
  • Negotiations with the Taliban: Good idea, since they seemed willing to negotiate. We don't know how long it would've taken them to turn over Bin Laden, but this way we probably won't catch him soon. If he's still free in a year or two, I'm going to laugh my head off at you warmongers with your brain-dead approach to problem-solving.
  • Negotiations with the greater Islamic world: Excellent idea, and the only way to address the root causes of terrorism. See Understanding Islam for details.
  • >> Only if it is your only option, and only if the alternative is the loss of more life. <<

    War wasn't our only option, as several hundred pundits and I have stated. If your side has an argument proving war was our only option, I must've missed it. Bush, for one, didn't make a persuasive case for war. He stated it as a given, the exact opposite of making a case.

    As I've helpfully informed you a dozen times, the terrorists based their attacks in the US. Bombing Afghanistan hasn't done a thing to prevent terrorists from planning similar attacks from their hideouts in the US, Germany, and elsewhere. They may be planning an attack now, and any deaths will go directly into Bush's column. Next time there'll be no question; Bush's war will get the blame for all future Al Qaeda attacks.

    My life isn't any more threatened today than it was on 9/10/01 or 9/11/00 or 9/11/91. 9/11 hasn't changed the risk to American lives one iota. If you think war is necessary now but you didn't think it was necessary on 9/10, you're only admitting how woefully ignorant you were.

    >> Then why is everybody defecting to the Northern Alliance? <<

    Because the war didn't go as well as they planned. They still aren't begging for mercy, nor are they turning over Bin Laden. If we'd done this my way (i.e., Jesus's way), Bin Laden might've been in captivity by now.

    Every Taliban who successfully defects is one more person who won't be facing revenge or justice. So war is achieving an effect similar to diplomacy: the nonviolent transition to a new government. Congratulations.

    >> Why is everyone planning for a post-Taliban Afghanistan? <<

    What does installing a new government have to do with Bush's stated goal of justice? So we've captured or killed a handful of Al Qaeda members. There's been no evidence that war has done more than diplomacy would've to bring the terrorists to heel.

    >> What they mean is not retaliating when it is justified. <<

    No, what they mean is what I said: diplomacy. Look up the word in the dictionary if you don't know its meaning.

    As I recall, I favored intervening in Kuwait and Bosnia more than you did. I guess that's the difference between us. I support military action to save people; you support it to kill people. Too bad there wasn't a comic book-style villain in Rwanda, since you seem to need one before you'll put people's lives before your pocketbook.

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