RANGER AGAINST WAR: When the Shi(i)tes Hit the Fan <

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

When the Shi(i)tes Hit the Fan

We sanction Israel's fight against its Hezbollah attackers, yet when we invade Iraq, toppling their regime and occupying them, we call those fighting us "illegal enemy combatants". Don't the Iraqis also have the same right to fight and repulse an invading power--namely the U.S.--as the Israelis do in the name of self-defense?

Furthermore, if the U.S. calls for a cease-fire between Lebanon and Israel, then why not demand the same for the U.S. in Iraq and Afghanistan? What hypocrisy for America to suggest to Israel that she begin negotiations with her terrorist attackers, Hezbollah, when we have chosen an exclusively military route to deal with our erstwhile 9-11 attackers. (Of course, the fact that Iraq was not responsible for 9-11 is another unpopular topic.)

Israel certainly has the right to defend itself from outside invaders. Yet we are amazed when the Iraqis resist our forcefully-imposed occupation of their country. We tag them "illegal enemy combatants", but are we blind to the parity here? Don't the Iraqis, too, have the right to repulse an enemy occupyer (that being the U.S.)?

After all, it is only our hubris which allows us to see the toppling of Saddam as a good, and something that the Iraqi people would have wanted. So of course, we see the "resistance" we are encountering as just so much chaff on the radar. But, aren't they availing themselves of the same right of self-protection against us that the Israelis are against Hezbollah?

Why don't we demand across-the-board cease-fires? The answer could lie in the fact that the Iraqi and Afghani scenarios are beyond the control of U.S. policy. Forget Amtrak--the current Administration would make a lousy railroad company. It can start the train, but it doesn't have any brakes.


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