17 May 2007

Palestine and Perspective.

Well, the Palestinians, in the interest of keeping their unbroken streak of doing the stupidest and most self-destructive thing possible, are holding a civil war.

Note that this war is actually a civil war, unlike Iraq. There are clearly defined factions separated by ideology and approach to religion and few, if any, foreign players trying to invade the Gaza Strip (as, for instance, al-Qaeda in Mesopotamia is in Iraq). I find this via the Belmont Club, who got it from Instapundit, who got it from The Times Online.

I love this stuff. You have the unilatteral decision by Israel to do what the Palestinians (allegedly) want and withdraw from Gaza and chunks of the West Bank. Within a very brief time, as nations go, they are at the point where the Palestinians are killing each other at a rate Israel hasn't managed since the invasion of Lebanon in 1982.

I have only a few options to choose from. Either:

1) Palestinians are, by their very nature, incapable of governing themselves in a more civilized manner than the boys in Lord of the Flies.

2) There is something fundamentally wrong with the organizations (Fatah, Hamas) which the Palestinian people have decided to elect to represent them.

Personally, I think there is likely to be something to the argument that governments composed of murderers and thugs are not likely to act in a manner that could not be described as murderous and thuggish. The gunmen and assassins who make up Fatah and Hamas are not part-time militias of ordinary citizens with ordinary concerns, they are full-time thugs and many have been their entire adult lives. It is unsurprising that they cannot find anything to do other than shoot each other.

For comparison, the United States was founded primarily by businessmen, lawyers, craftsmen, farmers, and plantation owners. We got on with the business of, well, business in short order. Even though there was a fundamental question of whether this country would exist half free or half slave, it took us decades to get pissed off to the point that we started killing each other over it.

The Palestinians don't have that much of an excuse.

As usual, their only hope is for a foreign power to step in and restore order, although I have to ask why in Hell the Egyptians (as one Palestinian quoted in the article suggests) would WANT the Gaza Strip. It's pretty much a run-down hellhole. What's in it for the Egyptians?

What a mess. And this one they did all themselves. No blaming those nasty Jews and Crusaders for this one!

Foreign Object Damage asks another question, tangentially related to this one but of far broader application.

He quotes a presidential candidate, a Republican by the name of Ron Paul, who says,

“I’m suggesting that we listen to the people who attacked us and the reason they did it”

Now, Ron seems like a guy with his heart in a very Libertarian place, which suggests to me that he's pretty idealistic.

For those not tracking, when I say "idealistic" I mean, "Uses non-reality based thinking."

Or, slightly less sarcastic, "considers ideology to be more pertinent to decision making that minor inconveniences such as facts."

FOD argues rather succinctly that the question is irrelevant. Who cares? You wouldn't ask a Nazi why he believes that the world is a better place with fewer Jews and more air pollution caused by burning Jews. And the specifics of why a KKK member hates are also irrelevant.

In the same way, pretending that we have any interest in the terrorist viewpoint is silly. We don't accept their basic premises (militant Islam, or what ever other skewed ideology motivates that particular terrorist faction) and we know by now that they are using piss-poor logic at best. Their answers are unacceptable and antithetical to civilization, so why waste time with them?

If you really feel like wading through the "terrorist viewpoint", I can point you towards the CENTCOM Exposing the Enemy website and you can read through terrorist drivel to your heart's content. It doesn't take long to reach FOD's conclusion on the matter.


Anonymous auxdarastrix said...

Not that I agree with it (I don't), but the basic premis of liberal (don't know about libertarian) thinking seems that all the conflict in the Middle East is cause by Western colonialism (British and French occupation of much of the Middle East, Israel) and that religious differences have nothing to do with it. They are just upset with capitalist imperialist pig-dogs!

4:59 PM  
Blogger David M said...

Trackbacked by The Thunder Run - Web Reconnaissance for 05/18/2007
A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention.

7:08 PM  
Blogger Zero Ponsdorf said...

Who cares why? I don't get it. If a thug is pointing a gun at me, and I have the means to resist, I sure as hell ain't gonna engage him in a dialog.

1:02 AM  
Anonymous Bill McD said...

The 'let's find out why' is less an issue of response and more of prevention. If you know which of your actions has been used by these organizations as a motivator for recruitment, you can take steps in the future to prevent similar usage, either by avoiding the behavior, or by working to demonstrate the good faith intentions toward non-hostile individuals behind the behavior.

It's not rocket science. It's rather basic Sun Tzu: You want to capture 'All Under Heaven' intact. This means you do not want to inspire uprisings against you. If you can learn what has inspired the uprising, then you can take steps to ensure that next time you are forced to act, you do not inspire another.

While this is usually applied directly to occupation forces and invasion, it applies equally well to American hegemony: Our culture, our media, our behaviors, our foreign policy (which is just our behavior on the world stage) and our values, all form a kind of non-military occupation by which we cannot help but influence the world around us, which has repercussions. Understanding which of our moves has caused which repercussions allows us to either defuse such things in the future, or at the very least, be prepared for, and prepared to respond to, similar repercussions.

Think of it as the same kind of psychological profiling police use to be able to anticipate murders' actions, on a geopolitical scale.

6:57 AM  

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