August 7, 2006

The Danger of Self-Defence

Is it so hard to equate death of one innocent person with the death of another? History is colored with historical mass murders based on religion or nationality. People forget the last army to invade Jerusalem and kill all of its citizens was actually European and Christian.
Today more innocent people die on both sides of the Israeli-Lebanese conflict. Who is more wrong? Israel or Hezbollah. Obviously the terrorist organization is the larger contributor to the crime. Therefore, Israel is, in this case, the victim.

Can the victim of a crime ever do harm in defending itself? Canadian law protects those who kill in self-defence. It only does so if their imminent life is at risk. It can certainly be argued that the existence of Israel is at risk. After all, if Iran or Syria were to have their way, Israel would not even be on the map. We all recognize the threat Israel faces. However, one question we fail to ask in the peril around us is, Can Israel defend itself at all costs?

Nobody I know has ever questioned the right of Israel to defend itself. The threat Israel faces is differnt from the ones of old. Israel now fights Hezbollah, Hamas, and Al-Qaeda. Three terrorist organizations whose armies are hiddin among civilian populations of the Middle East. The battle has become more difficult, no question; however, must we, as human beings afford these misguided people the same decency we would afford any prisoner?

Would Israel torture a Hezbollah operative to obtain information which could lead to the return of Gilad Shalit? Can Israel violate the norms of "international law" to defend itself. Basically, can they defend themselves NO MATTER WHAT? I am not saying they do. However, as recent events continue to linger on, and civilian casualties mount on both sides of the border, it is only the innocent ones who will pay with their lives for the indiscretions of others.

I have family who lost loved ones in times of war. We all do. Anytime we know someone who died for the mistakes of others, we seek to take revenge on those who caused the innocent to die. Therefore, it is only natural for Israelis to want every Hezbollah member to pay with their lives for the deaths of their loved ones.

What makes us better than they are? What makes the law-abiding citizens of Israel, Canada, Europe better than barbaric organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah? It is that when we are faced with the opportunity for revenge, we do not let our emotions take over.

September 11th 2001 has done irreparable harm to the psyche of the American population. In the middle of the 1960s, nobody would ever dare think of imprisoning a number of suspected criminals and torturing them "in the name of national security." Today, thgey sit idly as their government commits war crimes on man with no countries to stand up for them. America has become as barbaric as the enemy it pursues.

George W. Bush has already decided the US would ignore Geneva Conventions with the creation of Guantanamo. American people stand silently watching as their own country, which values freedoms and liberties, but denies it to their enemies.

I marched in a demonstration for peace today. Instead condemnations of terrorist actions in Lebanon were met with jeers and insults. It is no wonder the Maronites, Christians and Druze chose not to participate. We must stand side by side ONLY with those who wish to promote peace, no more, no less.

The evolution of human rights is attained the more people realize the differences between themselves is irrelevant. Richard Rorty's words still live true. All blood is worth the same, whether it be Jewish, Muslim, Christian, etc. Once both sides can realize that simple fact, there will be no need for self-defence

46 Commentaires:

Blogger s.b. a dit...

You are ridiculously influenced by television photo ops of a few dead civillians. The last time a global conflict was waged, there were anywhere from 20 million civillians killed. That's probably just Europe. When you are talking about organizations that want to anhililate Jews, take away all civil liberties, execute gays, cloister women and take away all political freedom. 500 dead civillians is very very very miniscule. These civillians also support this organization for the most part. Would you be writing about 500 Nazi civillians that were killed, who advocated gasing Homosexuals to death? Just a question Antonio, because that's really very close to what you are defending. Just think about it for a minute and try to decide whether 20 million dead civillians was worth it to defeat fascists in Europe, that includes Italy. Except they didn't put the photos of the dead on the news every night and use civillians as shields. Yeah there have also been about 100,000 dead in Afghanistan but their photos don't make it to the news either.

You need to think about your emotional response that pretends to be intellectual and stop watching photo ops of dead "women and children" who were put on the news by radical religious fascists. Then decide if you would like to live in Shia controlled Lebanon, Iraq, Iran or Syria. OR would you prefer to be free and live in Israel. I can guarentee you'd rather live in Israel and you wouldn't be riskig your life, nor would your female friends or your Catholic family or any one who has a political opinion that isn't approved of by Shia Imans. Give your head a shake Antonio and stop watching TV.

8/07/2006 9:06 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

Oh yeah Human rights groups now put the number of dead in Qanna at 28 all of which made it onto the news, some more than once I'm sure. Half of these were women and children so that's 14. Sounds like you and someone else have been exagerating a little Antonio. 14 women and children 28 dead, vs Oh 20 million to defeat Nazi controlled Europe. Yeah give your head a fuckin shake and think about what you are supporting.

8/07/2006 9:16 a.m.  
Blogger Christopher Young a dit...

s.b., have you ever just stopped thirty seconds and actually read Antonio's posts, for God's sake ? He's condemning Hezbollah in every text; hell, he even starts his article by saying that Israel is a victim!
Your "if-you-don't-support-blindly-Israel-in-everything-it-does-you're-just-an-antisemite-bastard" comments are completely stupid, and just contribute to poison the debate much more than it needs to. Following that logic, I would be violently anti-french since I don't support Quebec's government; I am the raciest of all, I mean, I think (some) African governments are corrupted!
And, again, attacking Antonio's italian origins doesn't bring much to the subject, as does your stupid WW2 comparisons; Antonio ever stated that both wars were similar ? Nope. Following this comparison would mean Iraq's war is doing great since there's less dead civilians over there than in World War 1.

Ok, now attack me, and paint us all Quebeckers as anti-semite, since we ask questions about this war. I'm ready.

8/07/2006 10:50 a.m.  
Blogger Thomas a dit...

One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter. At one point, George Washington was considered a terrorist by the powers that be. History will remember Hezbollah as an organization that stood up to the most vile "nation" in human history.

Thomas @ thelongwalk.ca

8/07/2006 11:59 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

No, Antonio condemns Jews in every post and appologizes and justifies Hezbollahs actions. I really do recommend he go live in a radical Shia controlled country for a little while and then maybe reconsider his opinions, then again he wouldn't be allowed to have an opinion in a radical Shia controlled country and would probably be stoned to death.

8/07/2006 1:01 p.m.  
Blogger cat mutant a dit...

Thomas

I totally disagree with your belief that,

"History will remember Hezbollah as an organization that stood up to the most vile "nation" in human history.".

Hezbollah and company are part of the modern-day fascism, islamofascism.

Today, not many sane and civilized people remember European fascism in good light. They commited countless atroscities. The same can be said with today's islamofascists. The complete abuse of human rights, treating non-muslims as second-class citizens, treating women as objects, killing people for having sex outside marriage, killing people for being gay, etc, etc, etc are all aspects that shed light on today's fascism. They are not an enlightened people but radicals. And unless the entire world is taken over by this group of crackpots, which will never happen, no sane and civilized person will remember such groups as Hezbollah, Hamas, the Taliban, Al-Quaida and friends, the Iranian dictatorship, etc, as great movements. Likely, they will be remembered for their backwardness, starting conflicts (as Hezbollah just did), and their total disrespect for human life.

As European fascism was defeated, the same will be true of islamofascism.

8/07/2006 1:07 p.m.  
Blogger Thomas a dit...

When you cannot hold your own in a debate, call all that you hate "Nazi."

While I personally disagree with the social conservatism of Hezbollah, I believe that we must respect the cultural differences between the West and the Arab world. We cannot become cultural imperialists and impose our values on other cultures. Thus, I simply respectfully disagree with their stances on issues of morality but still believe that Hezbollah is simply defending a persecuted people.

8/07/2006 1:16 p.m.  
Blogger ottlib a dit...

Thomas:

There may be a grain of truth in what you say about Hezbollah.

However, its method of defending a persecuted people is to rain death and destruction down on the innocent. That is unacceptable and far outweighs any good they may do for their people. As well, there desired goal is the destruction of another people.

That is not what civilized people do or desire. Until they change their ways and their reason for being they will always be just another terrorist group worthy of nothing but our contempt and our condemnation.

8/07/2006 2:52 p.m.  
Blogger cat mutant a dit...

Thomas,

I believe I held my own in our littledebate. I didn't call anyone a Nazi, nor did I even use that term. I used the terms fascism and islamofascism. I called Hezbollah radicals, just like the fascists of our past were radicals. Where one group uses religious ideology to exert control over their people, the other of the past used racial ideology. Regardless, the same line of thinking is always involved; one of superiority compared with other, intolerance for those who hold different views, and the exertion of total control of civilians through use of fear and intimidation.

All lives are worth the same. The life of a Muslim is the same of the life of a Jew. Killing civilians on both sides is extremely sad. But please, don't praise Hezbollah as freedom fighters. Their right to exist is invalid, since Israel withdrew from their areas of Lebanon that they occupied. The border between Lebanon and Israel is an international, undisputed border. And don't forget, Hezbollah started this whole conflict by entering Israeli territory.

Hezbollah has always maintained that they wish for the destruction of Israel and Jews. If they were truely concerned with the well-being of their people, they would not hide weapons in hospitals and schools.

8/07/2006 3:54 p.m.  
Blogger Phil Larouche a dit...

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8/08/2006 1:05 a.m.  
Blogger Alex Plante a dit...

Shoshana,

Antonio never condemned the Jews. He has condemned the actions of the IDF and the government of the State of Israel. Those two things are very different. You just mix all those things to insult people that do not agree with you (probably a lack of good arguments)

Antonio has never endorsed or justified the killing of Israeli civilians by Hezbollah. If so, could you please back your statements by quotes from Antonio. He has never justfied or apologized the killing of civilians by any of the parties involved.

Stop insulting people. Stick to disagreeing and backing your claims with valid arguments.

We might understand the motives behind the actions of Hezbollah but that doesn't mean we justify their actions, especially the killing of innocent civilians.

Those statements are libelous at least.

Alex

8/08/2006 1:07 a.m.  
Blogger Fady a dit...

I do not agree at all with what has been said in the post. All the lebanese took part in the demonstration, from every sect. Wasn't it you who said that 85% of the Lebanese population now supports Hezbollah? That was even before Qana!

Hezbollah is not a terrorist organization. You may argue that it is a terrorist organization after the israeli withdrawal in 25 may 2000. Anyone who reads the UN charter can see that people have the undeniable right to resist occupation. Israel's occupation lasted 25 years and Hezbollah is the result of the 18000 killed by Israel's barbarism in 1982.

This war didn't start 4 weeks ago and Hezbollah wasn't created out of nowhere. A lot of people may disagree with the kidnapping of the two israeli soldiers, but don't expect us to cheer Israel for what it is doing now. Every Lebanese is against Israel's monstrous barbarism. And while you may argue that Hezbollah targets civilians, you forget to look at the real figures. Right now 1 israeli civilian is worth 40 Lebanese. You really have to be crazy to say that "Israel is the victim". Most of the Israeli dead are soldiers.

Hezbollah is by far the winner in this war. It has now the complete popular support of the Lebanese, Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims than it ever did in the past. In short, Hezbollah achieved its objectives while the Israelis were too busy testing their new US Boeing weapons on milk factories.

People here that keep ranting about the "evil" terrorist organization and keep demonizing hezbollah should ask themselves serious questions before arriving to quick conclusions. Some crazy b*** is comparing those 500 civilians killed, a quarter of them children, to nazis. Israel sure has one hell of a democracy! Hey! I have an idea...let's celebrate this amazing democrazy while we call dead "terrorist" kids nazis! Yoohoo!


http://skynews-clips.videoloungetv.com/public/skynews/latest/galloway_060806.wmv

8/08/2006 3:36 a.m.  
Blogger Fady a dit...

Mistake

1:30 and not 1:40.

8/08/2006 4:01 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

The anti-semitism coming out of Quebec especially within the Liberal Party is disgusitng. Antonio and Alex and Fady constantly demonize Jews and excuse the actions of Hezbollah, who are Islamofascists. The Liberal party in Quebec needs to stop this and tell people such as Alex and Antonio there opinions on sovereign nations and the JEwsish people don't belong in the Liberal Party. They are jeuveenile full of hate and rabidly anti-semetic.

I will repeat my offer to Antonio. Go live in an islamofascist Shia controlled state for a year and than decide if you feel the same way, if you are still alive to have opinions. It is fine to accidentally kill 500 civillians to defeat fascists, and Hezbollah are fascists make no mistake. It is jhust fine. These civillians were not targeted they were used as sheilds by Hezbollah.

Hezbollah is disgusting and so are your opinions. The sad part Antonio is that you are defending people who would stone you to death, just for being who you are. They hate you. Keep defending them. You are very confused.

8/08/2006 7:24 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

Oh yeah Antonio, most of those "innocent" women and children who were killed would participate in your stoning to death, if not dance in the street afterwards, like they do when suicide bombers they have sent into Israel kill women and children who have been specifically targeted, or when the planes hit the World Trade Centres. They dance in the streets Antonio when "innocent" Israeli woman and children or "innocent" women and children on planes are killed by suicide bombers. If you have no memory I'm sure I can find the video footage for you, since you like to watch tv so much.

8/08/2006 7:41 a.m.  
Blogger ottlib a dit...

Shoshana:

I think you may want to change tack.

Your baseless accusations of anti-Semitism against Antonio and now all of Quebec is not causing them to stop taking and disseminating opinions contrary to yours. Which I am certain is the reason why you have used this line of "argument".

Perhaps you should actually argue points of view using facts and sound arguments instead of vitriol and invective for it seems your current strategy is a dismal failure.

Oh yes, you seem to be implying that anti-semitism is a problem that applies to all of Quebec. I am certain that you do not mean that. After all claiming a whole people to be anti-semitic based on what you perceive to be anti-semitism from one man is racist in the extreme, and I am certain that is not the kind of argument you wanted to impart in your last comments.

8/08/2006 10:29 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

I said that anti-semitism is coming out of Quebec in the Liberal Party and it is. Just read Antonio and Alex's comments, not to mention several others. It is a growing concern to the party and MP's are calling for it to be examined and stopped. It is anti-semitism. These are the same people who support and defend Canada's continued military invasion and combat operation 4 1/2 years later, of a soveregn nation, Afghanistan, where 100,000 innocent civillians have been killed. Do Alex and Antoio care less about those civillians, since they staunchly defend Canada's right to kill civillians there, where we have no business being at this point in time in a combat capacity? How do they explain their contrary opinions on military deployment and civillian casualties? I can explain it. Anti-semitism. There is no other credible explaination. Its not OK why? because its just Jews defending their existence, not the US defending its interests 4 1/2 years and 100,000 civillians later.

8/08/2006 1:55 p.m.  
Blogger cat mutant a dit...

Shoshana

Afghanistan and the Israeli-Lebanon conflict are very different yet similar, in a few respects.

As for Canadians killing civilians, that is bullshit. The Taliban is killing civilians, and NATO troops stepped in to bring some form of normality in the lives of Afghan civilians.

You said Antonio was starting to sound like an NDPer...do you remember that is was your party, the Liberal Party of Canada, that decided to send troops to Afghanistan in the first place?

Pulling out of Afghanistan would create a vacume which the Taliban would fill quickly. Just like pulling out of southern Lebanon would create a vacume that Hezbollah would fill again. You can't be for fighting one islamofascist movement and not another.

You're anti-Afghanistan stance makes you sound like an NDPer.

8/08/2006 2:10 p.m.  
Blogger Thomas a dit...

Links to articles on Israel's chemical warfare on Lebanon and Hezbollah as a secular democratic resistance organization here.

Thomas @ thelongwalk.ca

8/08/2006 6:31 p.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

The war in Afghanistan has killed over 100,000 civillians we and the Us and our coalition partners are responsible for those deaths. it is a WAR. It was a full scale invasion. We did depose the government of a Sovereign Nation. That's ok but Jews accidentally killing 14 womena and children who were warned to leave and used as shields by Hezbollah is not? Yeah I've got a name for that anti-semitism. The war in Afghanistan is much more agressive and has cost many more lives and has been protracted for 4 1/2 years and approved of indefinately by the leadership candidate these anti-semites support and themselves. There is absolutely no reason to continue combat operations in afghanistan. They are not threatening Canada at this time. We have far less right to be there than the Isrtaeli's have to defend themselves against Hezbollah. You're right it is different. Israel is far more justified to protect itself than we are to continue to kill innocent civillians in their homes in Afghanistan and that is what we are doing in Khandahar. Why don't Alex and Antonio care about hose lives? Why aren't Jews allowed to dfend themselves? Antisemitism.

8/08/2006 6:46 p.m.  
Blogger andrewridgeley a dit...

On the WWII vs. today's scenario, there are some similarities. We can't ever hope to pardon the firebombings of Dresden and Tokyo or Truman's decision to use the atom bomb at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Those were actions rooted in the worst of human spirits, but they were tactical responses to military provocation and, arguably, wholly merited. Israel is being held to an unprecedented international standard in this war, one the United States, Canada, and the Allied forces in the second world war were exempt from. Olmert, thus, need only cite historical precedent to justify his government's actions in the conflict so far.

The difference here is Lebanon has a specified obligation to secure, fully, its territorial sovereignty under Security Council Resolution 1559. There is unanimous agreement that Hizbollah's control of the country's Southern region must be dissolved. So this isn't the kind of statism you're thinking of, SB. The victims of this conflict in Lebanon are not subject to violence because of the flag they carry. Just as the victims in Israel, they suffer at the hands of a deceitful campaign by Hizbollah to entice Israel into military occupation, which would foster, for their state allies, a grounds for recreating the old world of territorial, statist conflict. Hizbollah is at fault because it is a terrorist organization with genocidal aspirations. Lebanon is at fault because it has yet to fully attain sovereignty within its borders, as it is obliged to do. Israel is at fault because it's fallen for a trap, set by Hizbollah, to galvanize the Arab world and divide the region.

Antonio is right. Civilian worth is immeasurable. There is no way to judge or value lives as more or less than any others.

8/08/2006 9:13 p.m.  
Blogger cat mutant a dit...

Shoshana

You should refrain from calling people anti-semites for not agreeing with your point of view. Your attitude is just as uncivilized as those islamic fanatics who call Christians 'crusaders', etc, etc.

Also, you should refrain from calling people fascists, because they have German or Italian roots. That is unfair and racist. ALL peoples have commited crimes in the past and present.

Andrew Ridgeley, great comment.

8/09/2006 1:03 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

read this Antonio and Alex

8/09/2006 8:18 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

Cat, I don't give a flying fuck about being civilized when I'm talking about defending the life of my son and the existence my people. Really, I don't fucking care to be civil and that comment is so WASPY and anti-semetic its laughable.

8/09/2006 8:20 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

I didn't call Antonio a fascist, I said he was defending islamo fascists who would gladly stone him to death, which he is, and I asked him how many Jews his Grandfather sent to Death Camps from Italy after one post where he was ponitificating about the history of my people. A fair question I think.

8/09/2006 8:22 a.m.  
Blogger cat mutant a dit...

Shoshana,

An eye for an eye then? That's the attitude. That's also the same attitude that comes from both sides and never always any peace to be reached.

And my comments are definitely not anti-semitic. You truely fail to realize what anti-semitism is. And I can assure you, I'm not Anglo-Saxon or Protestant.

You seem to enjoy calling people names, when they don't agree with you, which is quite juvenile, and UNCIVILIZED. If you look at my previous posts, I am defending Jews, yet you label me anti-semetic. Go see Frasier. Or better yet, I think Eddy could help you out more.

8/09/2006 8:54 a.m.  
Blogger s.b. a dit...

Anti-Semetic is not a name it is an action and a thought which Antonio and his friends have readily displayed. Who are you to decide what is and is not anti-semitic Cat? Jews decide, you don't. Its not a name it is not a school yard taunt. It is a serious concern about bigotry in these posts. I am quite sure they are anti-semitic and I am quite sure I am allowed to decide they are and call Antonio on his attitudes. I feel fully confident in this and will not be silenced by your petty white anti-semitic admonishishments that I need to be more polite. Yeh Jewish women have heard that before. It gets a little tiresome coming from wasps.

8/09/2006 3:58 p.m.  
Blogger cat mutant a dit...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8/09/2006 4:02 p.m.  
Blogger cat mutant a dit...

Shoshana

I am not anti-semitic. I support the existence of Israel, and support their actions to a certain extent... I also cited the dangers of islamofascists, and my belief that Israel is playing into their hands. I wrote extensively in previous posts about the dangers of the islamofascists. I defended Israel is previous posts, by saying Hezbollah started this mess, that they're terrorists, etc, etc. How does that make my anti-semitic?

I'm also not Anglo-Saxon, and I'm not Protestant (referring to your WASP) comment. I already wrote this, but I guess you have selective reading.

You see, it isn't justified to call people anti-semites, fascists, and whatever else you may fancy because they disagree with you. You called me an anti-semite, despite the fact that I support Israel, and you called people fascists because they have German or Italian roots. Where's the justification in your name-calling? You know why it is NAME-CALLING? Because most of the time you label people these names when they are not. Sometimes it is merited, but when you call me anti-semtic, despite the fact that I support Israel and call people fascists for having Italian or German blood, it's insane.

But I can talk till I'm blue in my face... despite my support for Israel I don't agree with you 100%. Hence, logic dictates that since I don't agree with you 100%, I must be anti-semitic.

8/09/2006 4:20 p.m.  
Blogger Alex Plante a dit...

Shoshana,

The story that you linked to is very sad indeed. Never, either me or Antonio have endorsed the actions of Hezbollah or any other organization killing civilians.

We highly value every human life, Jewish, Muslim, Christian, Hindhu, Buddhist or any other religion.

The atrocities of one side doesn't justify the atrocities of the other side.

The killing of innocent people in Qana doesn't justify the launching of rockets to kill innocent civilians in Haifa.

Please stop your name-calling because we value human lives. It is simply ridiculous. Considering Lebanese civilians' lives just as valuable as Israeli's lives isn't anti-semitic. It's simply liberal. Equality is something I really value.

Alex

8/10/2006 12:02 a.m.  
Blogger The Rat a dit...

"The atrocities of one side doesn't justify the atrocities of the other side."

And of course the deaths of civilians is an atrocity. So, without calling anyone names, maybe you people who have been getting upset with S.B. could remove yourselves from the emotions of this debate and answer a question based on S.B.'s rant: Was the killing of innocent civilians in France, Holland, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Poland, Russia, Japan, the Pacific Islands, and Africa justified by the need to remove the Fascist governments of Europe and stop the Imperialist ambitions of Japan? And if not, what should have been done instead?

8/10/2006 1:21 p.m.  
Blogger The Rat a dit...

It's been a whole lot of hours since I posted a simple question and not one person has answered. Funny. It's not like it isn't a fair question, especially for Quebeckers to answer. Quebec was massively against Canadian involvement in the WWII, and I'm sure if I googles a bit I'd find similar arguments from that time as to why the war is a bad idea, why the ends don't justify the means, why it's not Canada's business what happens in Europe. Criticising that attitude is easy today now that we know what we know about Nazi Germany, but then it was easily dismissed as propoganda, or pushy Jews over-reacting (see Trudeau if you don't believe that bit), because we had no proof of the death camps.

So, with hindsight to help assuage consciences, was the killing of millions of civilians during that war justifiable to end the horrors perpetrated by Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan? And if not, what would you have advocated, again knowing what you know now?

8/10/2006 8:50 p.m.  
Blogger andrewridgeley a dit...

Rat, we adressed that about 30 comments ago. And Antonio and Alex, I think, have proven themselves as having a pretty strong handle of this issue.

Anyway, I'll do it again with more specifics:

No, those deaths in WWII were not and can not ever be justified. Antonio couldn't be more right when he says that human life is of an immeasurable substance. However, no one here is questioning that they were necessary. Dresden wasn't pretty. Tokyo wasn't pretty. Vimy Ridge was not pretty. However, I, and most, believe they were necessary evils that brought about good things.

The problem I see in yours and Shoshana's logic is that your tendency is to fight a 20th century war, which is exactly what Hizbollah is trying to create and fool Israel into doing. The conflict we're talking about is not a statist conflict, there is universal international agreement that Lebanon must procure its territorial sovereignty, which includes rooting out Hizbollah from its Southern region. A security council resolution, to this end, was passed when Syria pulled out of Lebanon in 2005. No one is debating whether or not Hizbollah is a terrible organization with genocidal aspirations and I think the Fuddle Duddle authors have made that stridently clear.

Hizbollah is, by proxy, part of a syndicate that includes the aspirations of the Iranian and Syrian governments to ignite a 20th century war on Middle Eastern soil. The last thing this world needs is a statist conflict and Ahmadinejad and Hizbollah know that (this is because it would turn the Syrian and Iranian governments into powerbrokers: now we remember how so many leaders, on both the Axis and Allied sides, tried to position themselves as powebrokers during and after WWII and caused countless deaths for it). Rooting out Hizbollah is going to be a tough job and it's not going to be pretty. Israelis will die. Lebanese will die. If UN or coalition forces go in, I guarantee you they'll suffer casualties as well.

I assume what Antonio is saying is that Canada and the rest of the free world has an obligation to prevent this conflict from escalating into an international, statist war. We must contain Hizbollah now, preserve the Jewish state, and also help the Lebanese people secure their sovereignty from these whacko terrorist douchetrucks that are abusing their territory to wage bigoted warfare. Our obligation is to protect and better lives, because none have value more than any others. It's pretty simple, and I don't see why you're both trying to complicate it other than for sake of argument.

8/10/2006 9:32 p.m.  
Blogger andrewridgeley a dit...

To avoid the appearance of pulling a McCallum, I should point out that I threw Vimy Ridge onto that for dramatic effect because of its nationalist potency within Canada. I know Vimy was WWI, but the point remains.

8/10/2006 9:42 p.m.  
Blogger Alex Plante a dit...

The Rat,

I haven't answered your comment because I work during the day and I didn't have time to provide with a response.

With the comment from Andrewridgeley, I have nothing more to say. You are damn right Andrew.

Alex

8/10/2006 10:16 p.m.  
Blogger The Rat a dit...

"No, those deaths in WWII were not and can not ever be justified."

That is total double-speak. If they could not be justified then you cannot support the war against Germany. Either you say that, regrettably, 20,000,000 civilian dead was a necessary and justifiable price to pay, or it wasn't. Anything else is dissembling because you don't want to face the truth, which is you are applying different standards to Israel than you are applying to yourself.

The rest of your post is an irrelevant, and pointless justification of an unjustifiable position. Either you support the right of self-defence with the full knowledge that innocents will die, or you are advocating suicide. If the UN goes in and tries to disarm Hezbollah, with the inevitable civilian deaths, will you want that stopped? If the Lebanese Army does the same will you want them to stop? Again, at some point you must either admit civilian deaths are justifiable or you are a suicidal pacifist (or hypocritically asking Israel to be one).

Now, csan you try to answer the question truthfully this time, with a simple yes or no?

8/10/2006 10:57 p.m.  
Blogger Fady a dit...

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8/11/2006 1:30 a.m.  
Blogger Fady a dit...

You seem to be actually taking your comments seriously when they are completely irrelevant since you cannot compare the fascist regimes and nazis killing six million jews with the Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Israel has members who are just as extreme as Hezbollah wanting the expulsion of all arabs from Israel. They have religious extremists just as scary as Hezbollah and even worse. Israel is by far not a better democracy than Lebanon which is composed of 16 different sects and two religions rather than one like in Israel.

Third time stating that fact: Israel killed 18000 Lebanese in 1982 and countless others afterwards.

Compare the numbers and then come talk to me about who the real fascists and murderers are.

Go see statements by past Israeli PMs and then come talk to me about racism and tolerance.

There is no black and white in this war. Both parties are guilty and I find all comparisons to WWII in this post absolutely limited and ridiculous.

S.B I think you need to do your research about Hezbollah. True Hezbollah wants to execute gays but it does not want to cloister women. Anyone who actually reads history and bothers to see more than the current 4 weeks will find that there the situation is much more complicated and cannot be simplified in the way you're looking at it. You sound like some crazy FOX news "freedom fighter" reporter.

About Andrew's comments...they seem to be exaggerated as if there is some big conspiracy by Hezbollah to start a regional war. How many times did Israel want to provoke a reaction from Hezbollah by regularly violating Lebanese airspace, waters and even the recent assasination of a known Islamist against Israel in the south? Israel VIOLATED Lebanese sovereignty.

So don't be defending Israel as an enforcer of 1559. Lebanon has complained more than once to the SC about these violations with no results.

And please stop accusing people of anti-semitism especially people who actually have semitic origins and have jews, christian and muslims in their family. Concentrate on facts and arguments, while I might be disagreeing with some people here, at least there is a constructive debate.

8/11/2006 1:36 a.m.  
Blogger Antonio a dit...

was bombing Qana necessary to eliminate Hezbollah?

was it really?

I am and always will be in favor of the ends justify the means, but israel is killing a butterfly with a cannon.

Did the allies have to fire bomb dresden? I say no. Did innocent people have to die to win WWII I would say yes.

Killing for the sake of killing is simply wrong. I want to hear all the pro-Israel people here tell me Arab Blood = Israeli Blood

Just to see if they will say it.

8/11/2006 3:21 a.m.  
Blogger The Rat a dit...

Did the allies have to fire bomb dresden? I say no. Did innocent people have to die to win WWII I would say yes.

Thank you, Antonio, for an unequivocal statement. So we can agree that just the fact that Israel is killing civilians is not enough, by itself, to call for an end to this conflict. You think Qana was over the top? OK. But you don't really know what the Israelis were targeting so it's really just an uninformed opinion (That' not a shot, just a fact, as my opinion is just as uninformed). What most people are arguing is that 1000 civilian deaths is too much, but we don't know the facts, and frankly we can't trust the sources (see Adnan Hajj).

Now here is where I stretch my argument. I believe that a lot of the calls for Israelis to withdraw, for a immediate ceasefire are not based on fact, knowledge, or even absolute pacifism, but rather a double standard based upon anti-right poitics (a hatred of Likud, or the US). And in many cases it is a latent dislike of Jews for perceived support of right-wing causes, or the demon "profit". That's where I honestly believe a lot of Quebec Liberals and people further to the left inform their opinions from. After all, it wasn't that long ago that we heard of the "ethnic and money vote". We can debate that, you can disagree, but until I see real, unequivocal proof that Israel is deliberately targetting civilians, I will support their right to self-defence, and I will question the motives of those who oppose it.

8/11/2006 10:54 a.m.  
Blogger The Rat a dit...

By the way, Arab Blood=Israeli blood. A Jewish baby is just as innocent as an Arab baby. And Israeli soldiers killed in a war, and Israeli civilians killed in attacks on legitimate military targets are regrettable deaths but not war crimes. Is that good enough?

8/11/2006 10:59 a.m.  
Blogger Fady a dit...

http://www.news.com.au/sundaytelegraph/story/0,22049,20111533-5001028,00.html

8/12/2006 10:17 p.m.  
Blogger Fady a dit...

Still convinced that Hezbollah has some secret conspiracy to start a regional war?

Get a reality check, the truth will emerge sooner or later:
http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/articles/060821fa_fact

8/13/2006 9:25 p.m.  
Blogger Michael a dit...

Well, there goes one political career.

8/21/2006 6:11 p.m.  
Blogger Ian a dit...

Let's make all this simple. Israel is a lone democratic country in a region consisting of repressive dictatorships. Israel was created by the United Nations. Israel was completely surrounded by hostile nations bent on its annihilation and had to fight two major wars before two of its enemies, Egypt and Jordan, finally saw more benefits in peaceful co-existence with Israel (and acceptance of its right to exist) than a never-ending cycle of war and enmity.

Over a year ago, Israel's leaders made the domestically controversial decision (and the right one at the time, I still believe) to abandon the Gaza Strip and the settlements established there by a generation of Israelis. This chance for the Palestinians to embark on a new and more hopeful future was immediately squandered by their Islamofascist countrymen; the same day the last Israeli troops left Gaza, Hamas started lobbing Qassam rockets into Israel (from Gaza!). By the first anniversary of Israel's withdrawal from Gaza, Hamas had fired over 1,000 warheads into Israel, mostly into civilian areas. Just after the Israeli withdrawal, work began in earnest on a massive underground tunnel by which Hamas could cross the border into Israel's sovereign territory. This culminated in the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier this summer. Similarly, Israel occupied southern Lebanon for decades because doing so established a security zone protecting Israel's northern border, thereby sheltering its civilians in the north from Hezbollah raids, rockets, and general murder and mayhem. About six years ago Israel, for reasons both military and diplomatic, brought its troops back home from southern Lebanon. At the time (and until just last year), let's remember that Lebanon was controlled by Syria, a foreign country sworn to the destruction of Israel. So what happened after Israel agreed to leave southern Lebanon? Syria and Iran-sponsored Hezbollah moves in, along with their katusha rockets. Let's now recall Hezbollah's mission statement. It exists solely to bring about, by violent means, the destruction of the state of Israel - a democracy born of the United Nations - and its people. If given the opportunity, Hezbollah, Hamas, and their Syrian and Iranian backers, would finish the work of the Holocaust, which was only halted at the last minute by enlightened democracies like Canada.

This summer, following a Hezbollah incursion into Israeli territory which resulted in the death and kidnapping of Israeli soldiers (which remember also came on the heels of the Hamas kidnappings and 1,000 rocket attacks over a year), Israel finally declared it had had enough. Surrounded by violent forces, it resorted to force to protect its people. Sadly for Lebanon, Hezbollah chose to position many of its rocket storage and launching sites smack in the middle of civilian neighbourhoods. But for Hezbollah, the deaths of civilians was strategically desirable. When the inevitable civilian deaths came, Hezbollah was there with cameras to film the mangled corpses of women and children for use in their propaganda war against Israel. Tactically speaking, Hezbollah knew it could never win a military conflict with Israel. But it knew it could tip the war of public opinion in its favour once the Lebanese civilian deaths started to mount.

Anyone, I repeat anyone, who believes that all we have to do is get Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria, Iran, and Israel to the table for an airing of grievances, a "group hug" and a promise to just try to understand each other's cultural issues is delusioned in the most dangerous degree. Canada must have no part in such ridiculous and childish thinking. If anyone thinks that approach would have worked with Hitler, Idi Amin, Pol Pot, the leaders of the Rwandan genocide, Slobodan Milosovic and others of their ilk, he or she has no understanding of the mindset which galvanizes and sustains these maniacs and their willing followers. They do not think like we do, and no amount of Western "give peace a chance" singing, tom-tom beating, mushy-middle no-one-is-to-blame-feel-good-let's-all-be-friends diplomacy will ever be effective. The fact is (and this is anathama to our coddled, relativist thinking opinion-makers and talking classes), sometimes there is a right and a wrong, a black and a white. There are often good guys and bad guys in this world. Not everything is gray. The vast majority of ordinary people in Israel, Lebanon, Syria and even Iran simply want to live in peace, raise their children, and die a ripe old age. But the leadership of Syria and Iran, and their followers in Hezbollah and Hamas, do not want this. They are driven by an ideology which requires war until the end-game is achieved: the destruction of Israel and its people. Since Israel does not appear to be willing any time soon to let this happen, then all we can be assured of is much more of the status quo. The fact is, until Syria and Iran (and Saudi Arabia too) acknowledge Israel's right to exist, and agree to stop financing, succouring and supporting militant and terrorist groups like Hamas and Hezbollah, this conflict will go on forever. Forget about whining about root causes and history and spouting so-called solutions based on knee-jerk emotions. The Middle-East conflict is one of the most entrenched and intractable conflicts in human history. Any hope for a lasting solution will come only after the democracies of the world (and other vested interests like Russia and China) place pressure on Syria and Iran. This will require tough decisions which will be unpopular in a country like ours which has been able to live in a bubble and look good doing it. But those days ended on September 11, 2001. Now is the time for tough decisions followed up by resolute resolve and action. Such behavior in our politicians is often unpopular (and often punished), but therein lies true leadership.

8/22/2006 8:22 p.m.  
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