March 22, 2004

"to escape the cycle of murder and negotiation..."

I'm stunned. I thought I had covered all the reasons for liberating Iraq long ago. (I remember trying to debate with a blogger who started his argument with: "The case for war against Iraq is very weak. It has two components, neither of which stand up to serious examination..." Absurd of course, I'd already blogged at least 6 reasons myself. And of course, the slippery dog wouldn't debate them. They never do.)

Today Wretchard comes up with one more, so obvious, so compelling, that I'm smacking my forehead that I didn't see it.

We might have been put in the position Israel has been in for decades, with every success against the terrorists aborted by demands for "negotiations."

...He [Osama] hoped to force America into fruitless but ineffectual reprisals against the Islamic world, then offer a hudna at intervals while he prepared his next blow. George Bush's counterstroke, which history will either judge as an act of supreme folly or genius, was to go beyond Afghanistan into Iraq. In a worthy riposte to Osama's, he escalated the struggle to the point where it was mutually mortal. If the fall of the Twin Towers was a gauntlet in America's face, the fall of Baghdad was a glove shoved down the Islamist's throat. Both Bin Laden and Bush have made compromise impossible. If the jihadis believed they could control the tempo of the conflict they were misinformed; American forces in the Arab heartland have forced a zugzwang to compel the game to the bitter end.

Yassin's assassination serves the same purpose. Israel's main problem was to escape the cycle of murder and negotiation that was slowly bleeding it to death. No matter how horribly Israel was attacked it was always expected to return, in an attitude of abjection, to the negotiating table. The Jihadis learned that any Israeli counteroffensive could be aborted by throwing the prospect of further talks into its path. Israel's superiority on the battlefield would be nullified because it would always be restrained by the "Peace Process", a misnomer if ever there was one...

If Al Gore had been President, I have no doubt he would have moved against Afghanistan. And also pursued other actions against Al Qaeda. But then what? Sooner or later would come the negotiations—whenever it suited Al Qaeda's schedule. The "Peace Process." With the French in the middle. The fight would be stalled, with the enemy allowed to decide when it is to be resumed....

Posted by John Weidner at March 22, 2004 11:45 AM
Weblog by John Weidner