6/26/2004

6-26-04 - 2

6-26-04

good read 1
good read 2

The one thing that's very true is that military action only makes terrorists stronger. You cannot defeat terrorists with direct action. Even if you kill most of the terrorists, that just makes them stronger, because it increases recruitment from the millions who support them. The way to defeat terrorists is to get rid of the things that give them support - the Israeli violence against Palestinians, the poverty and oppressive regime in Pakistan, the corrupt monarchy in Saudi Arabia, the corrupt US-run "democracy" in Indonesia and the Phillipenes, etc. etc.

Hezzbollah and the IRA have nearly been defeated, two fo the world's worst terrorist organizations, and the method was not military - it was negotiation and withdrawal. When Israel occupied southern Lebanon, the Hezzbollah attacks were fierce and it was supported all over the Middle East; for every guerilla they killed, ten more took his place; now Israel has pulled out, and support for Hezzbollah as crumpled, and now when the Israelis do strike back at Hezzbollah there's not much uproar from the Arab community. The IRA was engaged in negotiation and brought into the government, and their acts of violence have almost entirely stopped.

You cannot possibly eliminate all the safe-havens for terrorists, not any time soon anyway; any country with massive poverty and anarchy (of which there are many) can be a safe haven. Even the war in Afghanistan was only a temporary setback for Al Qaeda; it forces them to disperse a bit more, but does nothing to destroy them.

When you see children playing terrorist, as you do in Palestine, and now in Iraq, you're losing the real war on terror.

The other argument, that Saddam may have had weapons that would be dangerous for Terrorists to get their hands on - that has some merit, though the evidence was weak, and invasion is a major over reaction. The big problem I have with that argument is that we've done nothing to secure dangerous weapons in the past. We sell our own military equipment to countries that may easily give it to terrorists to use against us (like Yemen, the rebels in Afghanistan, etc.) We did nothing to secure the huge amounts of deadly material in Russia when it broke up - there are literally unaccounted for nuclear weapons from the Russian stock piles. The huge Russian germ development labs were never secured or properly cleaned. There were countless Russian scientists who were experts in developing all kinds of weapons - many people around the world pushed for these guys to get hired by the US or UN so they wouldn't go on the open market, but no one did anything, and those guys can now sell their expertise to the highest bidder. Why did we help India develop nuclear reactors? Why did we allow Pakistan and Israel to develop nuclear weapons?

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