Wednesday, July 20, 2005

You got questions ... we got answers

On this post at SMASH's, I found a particularly disturbing comment from "MickA". Since comments are presently down at SMASH's, I'm going to respond here

Because it doesn't matter what you believe. If you are unwilling to question what you believe or what you are doing then you are wrong. This is never more certain during wartime when propaganda is a given.

When an assertion like this comes up, the meaning of "question" seems to always go down a one-way street ... only questioning of the Administration is considered legitimate, but questioning the reasoning and motivations of its critics is still "off limits".

MickA, let me tell you something ... we have questioned and considered the course of this Administration, and its critics. I did so for years, well before my President of today came to power.

This nation has even conducted "trials" (a few of its own choosing, many forced upon it), all over the world, of both worldviews represented above.

And what we found, was that when those who perpetrate such evil as Islamofascism were accommodated (regardless of ideology), they didn't remain static ... instead, both their capabilities and their appetite grew .

OTOH, when such perpetrators were confronted with the credible threat of decisive force, they retreated into insignificance, either being turned -- or destroyed.

In other words, the results show us that the "give peace a chance" worldview gave us more of the peace of the graveyard and the silence of the gulag ... while the "warmongers" paved the way for the expansion of TRUE peace, in Eastern Europe and elsewhere.

The question is whether it is worth giving up you own society's values in order to fight them.

So, MickA, I'm going to ask this same question several times below ... so get ready: Please PROVE this assertion. What values have we given up? Justify your conclusions.

The first comment on the linked page quotes the former US Secretary of State saying that the death of 500,000 children under UN sanctions on Iraq was "worth it" to contain/punish Saddam Hussein.Do you agree? In deciding to do this have the nations which made this decision lost something themselves?

IMO, MickA, those 500,000 deaths were WASTED lives ... wasted because we listened to the "give peace a chance" crowd that now opposes the actions of this Administration.

Instead of taking Saddam out in 1991 (or earlier), we chose to leave him in place ... in large part, because we did not want to be considered "imperialist" or "warmongering" by the elites of other nations ... and impose the sanctions to form the (leaky) bucket of containment around him.

Yes, we did lose something ... but we lost it somewhere between 1950 and 1970, when our elites began to look upon the direct and decisive use of American force as inherently evil, and something to be avoided at ALL costs. Their influence upon our leaders led to the outcome you describe above.

Do you now question THEM, along with my President?

In fighting a regime which kills and tortures its citizens is it worh employing tactics which make your country a worse human rights violator than your enemy?

Please PROVE that America has degenerated to anywhere NEAR this level.

Is it worth sacrificing your own country's freedoms in order to spread these elsewhere in the world?

Again, please PROVE that America has denegrated to this level.

Is it worth spreading freedom to Nth Korea if it means you will have to be on a 3min nuclear warning for the next 10 years? Have you not given up your own freedoms in doing this if you fear to stray 3mins from your backyard bunker? Or if you have to carry a gas mask with you at all times and live in a duct-taped bubble in order to be safe from chemical attacks?

The fallacy you appear to operate under, is that NOT spreading freedom will spare us from having to live in this manner ... or live in subjugation to men like bin Laden or Huessein.

History shows us that the appetite of those who would deny others their inalienable rights to gain an advantage or benefit for themselves keeps growing, until they are CONFRONTED with the CREDIBLE threat of DECISIVE force.

Unless we confront them, they will keep coming ... we don't have a choice in that. Our realistic choices are:
He (McNamara) asks in order to win a war should you incinerate 100,000 people in a night.

If many of those 100,000 people are conditioned to fight you to the death, at the command of a leadership who, if they win, will deny MILLIONS their inalienable rights ... yes.

OTOH, if they are willing to end THEIR nation's aggression short of that ... no.

In WWII, we had to do that ... but not today.

Today, we in our respect for human life have developed ways that are effective in taking out the military capabilites of a regime, while reducing civilian casualties to an absolute minimum.

You're comparing apples and oranges.

The Japanese wanted to win that war too you know, and the rationale that destroying US cities would have saved a whole lot of Japanese soldiers would have been equally true. Would it have been acceptable for them to have destroyed those US cities in order to achieve their goals?

You leave out an important consideration ... motive. It makes the difference between killing in self-defense and murder ... on an individual, and a national, scale.

One side sought to preserve the inalienable rights of people, inside and outside its borders ... the other side sought to impose its will upon all in its grasp, rights be damned.

That makes all the difference in the world ... and your argument reeks of the fallacy of moral equivalence, based upon results alone.

These are tougher questions. And keep in mind it is irrelevant whether you agree how well these things apply or whether they have occurred or will, the question stands: is it worth it. Because either you are willing to set limits on what you will do to an enemy or sacrifice of yourself in order to win or you are not.

MickA -- you need to ask one more question.

Who's going to set limits on the enemy ... and how?

Controlling our own actions, by itself, will not protect us against the loss you describe ... for it can be imposed on us, if we do nothing.

If you are not willing to even entertain the question then you there is no need to look elsewhere for dangerous brainwashed fanatics.

As I said above ... we have already questioned BOTH the Administration and its critics, looking at the merit of their viewpoints in the light of history. Problem is, the call for "questioning" is often used as a delaying tactic by those who oppose decisive action of any sort.

So, do we keep asking questions forever .... or should we apply what we have learned so far, make the necessary decisions, and excecute them?

This is not a comment on the US either, it is a universal truth. Your example of Hitler and Germany is a clear enough indication of this.

How about adding a few other countries to that list ... like say, most of the UN General Assembly members, who use accusations of American "imperialism", not to further peace, but as "war by other means" to advance their interests over top of others' rights.

Or, is the US the only focus of evil in the world today, in your eyes? Maybe you need to question YOUR assumptions some more ... after cleaning your glasses and clearly viewing the state of freedom in this nation today.

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