Thursday, July 13, 2006


Inauguration of the far Left Flank of the 101st Fighting Keyboarders

I figure if it's a good enough organization for wingnuts, it's good enough for lefty moonbats.

Actually, pursuant to a question about my lack of blogging related to Israel, the war about which I am being a chickenhawk (or wolfdove, my position is maybe hard to characterize), is whatever the latest actions of Israel constitute.

My question is: how do members of my tribe get to be so stupid? It sometimes seems, and many have claimed, that Israel has been fighting a dragon (which is largely one of stereotype rather than the very real existential threat that Israel has previously faced) so long it has become said dragon (cf. Nietzsche). It sometimes seems that Israel, being so obsessed with being strong and macho (in supposed response to "how you need to fight 'those Ay-rabs'"), that they do things solely to project their strength, but end up only projecting weakness -- and it all backfires. And then, to add insult to injury, since Israel's enemies, to the extent that they believe in anti-Semitic stereotypes, assume Israel is infinitely smart -- thus, what in reality is stupidity, is mistaken for some extreme form of venality.

Specifically: consider what Israel is doing in Gaza and Lebanon. While some on the left may disagree, it is necessary and appropriate for a country to appropriately, e.g. in kind, respond to an attack. But what has Israel done? Have they responded according to the Biblical principle of "an eye for an eye"? No -- they've escalated the situation. While too many Israelis believe that "Ay-rabs respond only to overwhelming force", the situation is simply that more violence begets more violence. Israel is hit by rockets? Take out those rockets. An Israeli soldier is kidnapped -- don't try and "target" leaders: you only kill innocent civilians (all of whose survivors will then seek vengeance on Israel -- sheez, don't these people read the Bible? if they did, they would understand the principle of blood revenge current in the ME that is expressly forbidden by the Torah: both when they have the urge to do it and when Israelis get on the wrong side of it) and demonstrate that you are cowards who hide behind superior technology to fight wars rather than bravely (and at greater risk to life -- remember, one reason why "they" hate us Jews is 'cause "we love our lives too much") fight our enemies face to face -- all while violating the principle that capital crimes must be adjucated in a court of law (cf. Pirke Avos ... note that by killing someone extra-judicially, you deprive society of killing them following proper adjucation: and thus risk an averah coming to Israel) -- try kidnapping a Hamas militant and then using the newly kidnapped feller, rather than some prisoner, as the bargaining chip. To kill a Hamas militant from the air only demonstrates you have the money to purchase superior weaponry and to place civilians at risk only demonstrates that our side lacks honor (yeah -- I know "they place civilians at risk" and thus there is a double standard, but there always is vis-a-vis us Jews -- after all, it's from our Bible that there should be such a higher standard for us: whaddya think the whole "chosen people" thing is about?). But to capture a militant is a sign that Israel has real power to curb militant actions -- that is why they are so keen on getting their prisoners back. Deaths can be spun as martyrdoms, but prisoners are tokens of defeat! And maybe Israelis would realize this if they considered their own reactions to the kidnappings -- "we" aren't so different from "them" as we'd like to believe.

As to Lebanon: there Israel is really being teh Stupid. By attacking Lebanon in retaliation for attacks from Hezb'allah, Israel de facto legitimizing Hezb'allah as the Lebanese government. And this de facto is not merely a theoretical fact: if it's Hezb'allah responding to what will be perceived as an Israeli attack (people will forget Hezb'allah started it), then Hezb'allah will be seen as the protector and de facto government of Lebanon. That is likely Hezb'allah's strategy. Why Israel is playing along with it is beyond me. Israel either needs to somehow aid the Lebonese government in responding to Hezb'allah or take the matter directly to Syria which is the force behind Hezb'allah (and likely the attacks on Israel are really about Syria trying to regain control of Lebanon ... another example of Israel being a victim of squabbles within the Arab world -- but then again, why is Israel acting in a way that will only allow Syria to recement its control over Lebanon?) -- even if that means risking broadening the war. And, call me a chickenhawk here (very definitely do -- I'm clearly being one) you'd think the blustering Israeli side wouldn't be so cautious about that risk.

Of course, these blunders of Israel sound familiar. While some argue that Israel's problem is that in fighting Arab "dragons" it has essentially developed a (stereotypically) Arab mindset, it seems that the real problem with Israel is not that they are not thinking like Jews but rather like Arabs but that they are not thinking like Jews but rather like Americans. Of course, do we really all think so differently? Especially Arabs and Americans -- while there has been, much to the detriment of our national security as security (as Sun-tsu would tell us) depends on our understanding the "other", much demonization and failure to empathize with Arabs and Muslims (and any such empathy, no matter how strategic in our war on terror it may be, is denounced as treachery -- which makes me wonder about the commitment of the right, which has in the past supported terrorism both at home and abroad, to actually fighting terror rather than scoring political points: so the media should stop accusing Dems of same, btw), in fact our "enemies" in the war on terror are really no different than us -- after all, how different could camel-driving Arabs be than cowboy Americans? And naturally, Jews who've become "pioneers" have become no different, eh?

what in reality is stupidity, is mistaken for some extreme form of venality

Have you ever seen this quote from Nasser?

"The genius of you Americans is that you never made clear-cut stupid moves, only complicated stupid moves which makes us wonder at the possibility that there may be something to them we are missing."

One of my favorite things ever said by anyone.
Hello Jon! Welcome!

I love the quotation. I cannot believe I've not heard it before -- considering that I would imagine the relevent time frame for Nasser developing this opinion was when the Dulles brothers were in charge of our foreign policy, this makes a lot of sense ...
I also like this George Orwell quote:

It is still very uncertain what plan they acted on... and they may have had no clear plan at all. Whether the British ruling class are wicked or merely stupid is one of the most difficult questions of our time.

I think this is just a generic human problem -- power tends to make people stupid.
"power tends to make people stupid" and absolute power stupidifies absolutely?

The kinds of questions that would be asked if one could fuse Lord Acton with Groucho Marx.

Probably would be the most ... insightful ... man ... ever ...

And the punditocracy, cowaring in fear, would tar and feather him as being "outside the mainstream".

Oh wait a minute, such a person existed once ... we called him "Mark Twain", though he was born Sam Clemmens.
Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?