The Swordfish Option

After I posted Appeasement Doesn’t Work, I heard that Greta Van Susteren interviewed Madeleine Albright concerning the current Mid-East crisis, i.e., the Israeli attack on Hezbollah positions in Lebanon after Hezbollah killed & captured Israeli soldiers. A question and answer during this interview was of particular interest:

VAN SUSTEREN: How do you though negotiate or how do you — what kind of diplomatic solution could you possibly have with Hezbollah? If Hezbollah is indeed the terrorist organization, which is what the United States says it is, I mean it just seems impossible that you could ever — they could ever want anything other than the utter destruction of Israel.

ALBRIGHT: Well, what has to happen is that the government of Lebanon, the legitimate government of Lebanon begins to be able to control its own territory which it cannot do by itself. Hezbollah has to be surrounded in a way that the territory is not dangerous and that the Lebanese government is in control…

What a fascinating question, and an even better response! Indeed, how do you negotiate with a terrorist faction that does not represent a country? Albright’s response seems to answer that – you don’t!! Only legitimate countries are to be negotiated with, not someone with an ax to grind. And this has been proven by Hezbollah’s compliance (or lack thereof) to UN Security Council Resolution 1559.

UN Security Council Resolution 1559 “Calls for the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias.” All other militias in Lebanon disbanded in accordance with this resolution except for Hezbollah. Hezbollah has fired rockets & conducted raids ever since this resolution was passed in 2004. Indeed, their military stockpiles and organization have grown tremendously since then. The question begs to be asked: If Hezbollah did not comply with the UN Security Council’s resolution, what are the chances that they would comply with any other agreement, no matter who they make it with? Answer: They won’t.

One of the other problems that I have with any type of negotiation with any terrorist organization is that by the very act of negotiating with that organization lends a certain amount of legitimacy to that organization. And that is very, very bad. If you recognize that this terrorist organization is worthy of negotiation, it is then a legitimate entity, which gives credibility to their movement, and then they are in a position to gain more power than what they should deserve. This is what has happened with Hamas, and you know where they are now – that’s now a huge problem for Israel. If any direct negotiations with Hezbollah take place, then look out!

Hezbollah’s (and Hamas, for that matter) have the stated goal of obliterating Israel. While some pundits say this doesn’t mean a genocidal war, I doubt that the Israelis are going to give up the land that they have fought for and settled for the 50+ years of Israel’s existence, and that the members of these organizations would think twice about killing Israelis. Our favorite terrorist group, al Qaeda, expands this goal to include Western society. So how do you reason with people who have the stated goal (and sole reason for existing) of destroying your country and everything you believe in by any & all means within their power? You don’t, unless you want to cave in and give them everything they want (which could include the life, liberty, & happiness of you & your family).

So what is the answer? Consider these lines from the movie Swordfish:

GABRIEL: That’s what I’m telling you, Stanley. We are at war.

STANLEY: War? Who are we at war with?

GABRIEL: Anyone who infringes on America’s freedom. Terrorists’ states, Stanley. Someone must take their war to them. They bomb a church, we bomb ten. They hijack a plane, we take out an airport. They execute American tourists, we tactically nuke an entire city. We must make terrorism so horrific that it becomes unthinkable to attack Americans.

And that is pretty well what Israel is doing. They are announcing to the world that they are tired of putting up with terrorist organizations that are a threat to them, and they will do their best to destroy or deter their activities so that anyone (terrorists or hostile countries) will think twice before conducting any type of operations against Israel. Sharing the pain ten-fold is a deterrent, whether or not you agree with it.

Consider President Bush’s address to Congress shortly after the 9/11 attacks. He made the following statements during that address:

“We will direct every resource at our command — every means of diplomacy, every tool of intelligence, every instrument of law enforcement, every financial influence, and every necessary weapon of war — to the disruption and to the defeat of the global terror network.”

“Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes. Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes, visible on TV, and covert operations, secret even in success. We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place, until there is no refuge or no rest. And we will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime.”

“…the only way to defeat terrorism as a threat to our way of life is to stop it, eliminate it, and destroy it where it grows.”

Sounds pretty civilized, doesn’t it? The problem is that the terrorists are not a civilized opponent. Consider that when they have captured American soldiers or civilians in Iraq, they are usually tortured, beheaded, and their bodies mutilated beyond recognition. They strap bombs to their children, and send them out into populated areas to blow themselves up along with whomever is around. In the cases of the USS Cole, the bombing of the Marine barracks & the US Embassy in Beruit in 1983, on 9/11 & on countless other occasions, they have proven that they are willing to sacrifice themselves to cause harm to as many people as possible, military or civilian. They do not care who they take out in the process just as long as the body count is high.

Will our leadership consider using “The Swordfish Option”? I think the answer is yes, but not until we are attacked again on our soil. And by then, it could be too late for thousands of our fellow citizens.

Now I know there are people out there that are going to flame me for being a war-monger, a hateful person, and a whole host of other names. I will state right here and now that I do not wish harm upon anyone, but I will support actions of self-defense. Think of it this way – If hornets are building a nest by your house, do you wait for someone to get stung before getting rid of the nest, or after? My action – get rid of the nest before someone gets hurt or dies from a sting.

Appeasement Doesn’t Work

Neville Chamberlain, Prime Minister of Great Britain in the late 1930s, gave this speech on October 3, 1938, to Parliament in defence of the Munich Treaty. This treaty granted Germany control of the Sudetenland, a rather large part of Czechoslovakia.

The Prime Minister: Before I come to describe the Agreement which was signed at Munich in the small hours of Friday morning last, I would like to remind the House of two things which I think it very essential not to forget when those terms are being considered. The first is this: We did not go there to decide whether the predominantly German areas in the Sudetenland should be passed over to the German Reich. That had been decided already. Czechoslovakia had accepted the Anglo-French proposals. What we had to consider was the method, the conditions and the time of the transfer of the territory. The second point to remember is that time was one of the essential factors. All the elements were present on the spot for the outbreak of a conflict which might have precipitated the catastrophe. We had populations inflamed to a high degree; we had extremists on both sides ready to work up and provoke incidents; we had considerable quantities of arms which were by no means confined to regularly organised forces. Therefore, it was essential that we should quickly reach a conclusion, so that this painful and difficult operation of transfer might be carried out at the earliest possible moment and concluded as soon as was consistent, with orderly procedure, in order that we might avoid the possibility of something that might have rendered all our attempts at peaceful solution useless. . . .

. . . To those who dislike an ultimatum, but who were anxious for a reasonable and orderly procedure, every one of [the] modifications [of the Godesberg Memorandum by the Munich Agreement] is a step in the right direction. It is no longer an ultimatum, but is a method which is carried out largely under the supervision of an international body.

Before giving a verdict upon this arrangement, we should do well to avoid describing it as a personal or a national triumph for anyone. The real triumph is that it has shown that representatives of four great Powers can find it possible to agree on a way of carrying out a difficult and delicate operation by discussion instead of by force of arms, and thereby they have averted a catastrophe which would have ended civilisation as we have known it. The relief that our escape from this great peril of war has, I think, everywhere been mingled in this country with a profound feeling of sympathy.

[Hon. Members: Shame!] I have nothing to be ashamed of. Let those who have, hang their heads. We must feel profound sympathy for a small and gallant nation in the hour of their national grief and loss. [Mr. Bellenger: It is an insult to say it!]

The Prime Minister:I say in the name of this House and of the people of this country that Czechoslovakia has earned our admiration and respect for her restraint, for her dignity, for her magnificent discipline in face of such a trial as few nations have ever been called upon to meet.

The army, whose courage no man has ever questioned, has obeyed the order of their president, as they would equally have obeyed him if he had told them to march into the trenches. It is my hope and my belief, that under the new system of guarantees, the new Czechoslovakia will find a greater security than she has ever enjoyed in the past. . . .

I pass from that subject, and I would like to say a few words in respect of the various other participants, besides ourselves, in the Munich Agreement. After everything that has been said about the German Chancellor today and in the past, I do feel that the House ought to recognise the difficulty for a man in that position to take back such emphatic declarations as he had already made amidst the enthusiastic cheers of his supporters, and to recognise that in consenting, even though it were only at the last moment, to discuss with the representatives of other Powers those things which he had declared he had already decided once for all, was a real and a substantial contribution on his part. With regard to Signor Mussolini, . . . I think that Europe and the world have reason to be grateful to the head of the Italian government for his work in contributing to a peaceful solution.

In my view the strongest force of all, one which grew and took fresh shapes and forms every day war, the force not of any one individual, but was that unmistakable sense of unanimity among the peoples of the world that war must somehow be averted. The peoples of the British Empire were at one with those of Germany, of France and of Italy, and their anxiety, their intense desire for peace, pervaded the whole atmosphere of the conference, and I believe that that, and not threats, made possible the concessions that were made. I know the House will want to hear what I am sure it does not doubt, that throughout these discussions the Dominions, the Governments of the Dominions, have been kept in the closest touch with the march of events by telegraph and by personal contact, and I would like to say how greatly I was encouraged on each of the journeys I made to Germany by the knowledge that I went with the good wishes of the Governments of the Dominions. They shared all our anxieties and all our hopes. They rejoiced with us that peace was preserved, and with us they look forward to further efforts to consolidate what has been done.

Ever since I assumed my present office my main purpose has been to work for the pacification of Europe, for the removal of those suspicions and those animosities which have so long poisoned the air. The path which leads to appeasement is long and bristles with obstacles. The question of Czechoslovakia is the latest and perhaps the most dangerous. Now that we have got past it, I feel that it may be possible to make further progress along the road to sanity.

There is a saying that goes, “Those that fail to remember history are doomed to repeat it,” and it has been repeated. Only this time, instead of Czechoslovakia, the victim of international pressure for appeasement has been Israel. If you haven’t read the above speech closely, read it again, and put it in context with the events of the Middle East.

Israel was pressured by the United Nations and regrettably, the United States, that they needed to give up land for peace with Hamas (the Gaza Strip) and Hezbollah (Southern Lebanon), two sworn enemies of Israel. And was there peace? No, there was not. Daily bombings and rocket attacks continued. Israel had had enough of the terrorist attacks by Hezbollah, the ineffectual negotiations with the Lebanese goverment, and the empty promises of the United Nations, so they took matters into their own hands. And when Israel began pounding Hezbollah positions, the world began calling for Israel to restrain itself. They have endured numerous terrorist attacks for many years, and they just cannot restrain themselves from taking action.

According to UN Resolution 1559, Israel and Hezbollah were to withdraw from Southern Lebanon. Israel did, Hezbollah didn’t. Israel has stated that they would stop the attacks if their soldiers were returned and Hezbollah withdrew from Southern Lebanon. Hezbollah’s response was to launch more rockets into Israel. And what has the UN done? Nothing.

In some respects, these actions have reaffirmed to the world that terrorists and terroristic nations cannot be trusted to keep their word or any treaties that they sign or agree to. UN sanctions & resolutions are treated with distain and are promptly ignored. Bargining with them, i.e., appeasement, will not bring about “peace in our time” or any other time. They will keep up their lethal activities and bullying tactics as long as they continue achieving their goals.

The stated missions of Hamas, Hezbollah, al-Queda and a host of other Islamic terrorist groups/countries is to wipe Israel and all infidel nations from the face of the Earth. Their actions have proved out their will to carry out this mission. If you don’t think so, then why are they strapping bombs to themselves, finding a crowded street or bus, and blowing themselves up? Why do you think 9/11 happened? Think they can be negotiated with? I don’t. And I hope our elected leaders think the same way.

Where Have All the Heros Gone?

Besides you, who or where else does your child look to for a role model, i.e., a hero? That should be a question I think we should asking ourselves, and to be honest with you, there’s not much out there.

Let us hope it is not anyone in Hollywood. Brad leaving Jennifer to have a baby with Angelina while still married to Jennifer is not what we would want our kids to emulate. Tom having a baby with Katie, preaching Scientology, wanting an ultrasonic machine so he can watch the baby grow, and criticizing Brook for seeking help is a case study of a supposedly all-American boy descending into the land of idiocy and self-indulgence. And then there are the various Hollywood elites that rail against the American system that made them rich, protest against world-wide poverty & personal gun ownership, and then disappear into their million-dollar mansions with their armed bodyguards. Hmm, no John Wayne there…

What about Washington? Politicians make promises they will never keep, lie, cheat, & steal, all to get power & re-elected. With the constant bickering, sniping, backstabbing, power plays, partisanship, flip-flopping, and scandals, who would want to look there for a role model? Not my kid…

How about sports? Uh, yeah… Soccer is now going through the head-butting finger-pointing phase because two players cannot be professionals. Home-run kings get caught using corked bats and steroids. Football players not only have problems with steroids, but seem to have problems with home violence. Let us not even mention professional wrestling! Even golf is not immune as no one seems to realize that Tiger has a problem with profane language because it is not publicized. And players unions seem to have a strike (or the threat of one) almost every year their contract is up for renegotiation. (I thought the purpose of sports was to provide clean, wholesome fun & entertainment with acts of sportsmanship. Not anymore, not when the players collecting multi-million dollar paychecks act like spoiled children & fight, tickets are outrageous, and the drunk behind you curses constantly & spills beer down your back…)

Business leaders, then? Not when they pay themselves millions in bonuses while the company disintegrates around them, and the employees are forced out of work or take pay & benefit cuts to keep their jobs. What lesson would your child learn from this example?

You know, it doesn’t take a village to raise a child, no matter what the World’s Smartest Woman says in her book. We need to keep the kids out of the village because the idiots are running it. With that being said, you, the parent, are the person that your child should look up to. If not, then you had better find out why & change it, because there aren’t a whole lot of good examples out there to take your place.

Delayed Posting

My apologies to everyone for not posting for a while. I’ve been on 10-hour second shifts for the past 3 days, and this schedule will continue for another week.

I am working on a post, gathering some info & research so I can sound somewhat informed. Hope to have that out in a week (maybe less) if everything works out timewise.

In the meantime, feel free to browse through the Index of past posts, and comment freely on those posts, and if you really want me to write on a subject, comment on this post or send me an email. Take care, everyone.