pub with drinks on different topics and visitors from around the world to come and chat

How much longer?

Greetings! I have been following this blog for a few weeks now and let me say that I am glad that Randall (Maximus) invited me over. Great job guys.
Going back to the purpose of this post, I would like to say that I want to make a statement and at the same time a startpoint for conversation about this controversial topic. We know that the Israeli-Palestine conflict has been going on for almost six decades now and that killings and wrongdoing have been occurring on both sides of the fence. This is an unfortunate situation which I honestly I do not have a straight answer for because its complexity in the events which have occurred during all this time.
However I think that the events that have been going on in the past month are well past any rights to defend a nation or a region in the name of decency or justice.

I am appalled as a human being for the atrocities that are being conducted in the Lebanon and Palestine. There is no country in the world that could get away with this type of actions except Israel. Because they had two Israeli soldiers killed by a terrorist group they gave themselves the right to invade another country, kill 700 civilians (so far) and destroy the few resources (homes, airports, sea ports, electrical plants, roads, bridges, crops, etc. etc. ) that these people, the Palestinians, had left. Let's remember that this country was already well below the World's poverty level.
I could go on and on with facts about this crisis that make it hideous, but I just want to get the bottom line: Why does Bush and his loyal birddog (trying to be polite) Tony Blair help Israel so much? The both vetoed in the UN as well as in the EU the unanimous condemn of Israeli actions after the killings of ten UN observers and the massacres of Qaa (about 30 civilians murdered in cold blood in a fruit market) while trying to give more time for Israel to get finish their massacre (about 10 more days according to Israeli prime minister.) It is obvious that Israel would have done nothing like this had they not been backed by it's two bullies who are at the same time supplying them with all the weaponry they are using to perform this attacks (planes, missiles, tanks, chemical weapons....)

I don't enjoy seeing casualties at all, no matter which side, and I surely detest and despise Hezbollah because it is a terrorist group like any other, ETA, IRA, FARC, etc. Therefore they should be treated like any other terrorist group, chased down and put in jail, if they resist, fine, kill them. But lets picture this; imagine if England or Spain were to go around after a terrorist attack were military were killed or even civilians, (which unfortunately have occurred most of the time), by IRA or ETA and bomb the heck out of Dublin or out of Bilbao blowing away buildings, roads, schools, power plants, etc, etc. It does not sound right, does it? Blair would not even think about it in his wildest dreams. Well, how come Israel is getting away with it then?

I hope that most of us will think about this situation and will share your thoughts without too much bias (I know about a couple of you....). I am attacking here the politicians and not the people. I don't do not root for one or the other, so please don't give the antisemite talk, I also have lived most of my life suffering the coward attacks of terrorism. I would rather say: first try to put yourself in the Israeli shoes as well as in the Palestinian shoes and tell us what you think.


posted by Nico on Tuesday, August 22, 2006


At 04 August, 2006 20:21, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you.

First of all let me say that I despise neonazis or terrorists (or anyone similar to them) for the reason of attacking normal people. For me it doesn't matter if you're a Jew or Palestine, Black or White, or have any other significant difference for that matter. We are all people in the first place who has no more rights and/or privileges in front of God than anybody else.

But this murdering is going beyond any reason. It happen before and it's happening right now.

In Bosnia US was bombing civilians and using clustered bombs that are forbidden by UN but did anybody got punshed for this? Of course not. Now a similar thing is happening with Israel when noone is going to stop them from doing it either. Even if UN or EU would accuse Israel of wrongdoings noon would do anything about it because They are backed up by US and England.

Maximus, I know that you'll say "oh, not again" but I'm not attacking US people instead it's the goverements who are at fault here. Right now it seems that Israel used the kidnappings as an excuse for an attack. That really reminds me of the First World War and how it was started from killing of an ambassador. That was also not the reason but rather a mare excuse.

I really hope that it finishes because it's not war that's going on, right now it's murdering. Does Lebanon has means to defend against Israel? The answer is no. If it would be Siria then it would be a war, right now it's more like extermination.

At 07 August, 2006 23:40, Blogger Random said...

First of all, thanks Nico for the post and welcome to Nikak. It's a pleasure to have you.

And don't worry about any antisemite talk here, we all know each other and know that none here are racist or antisemite.

Having said that, let me add my opinion just to give some balance to the equation. :->

This is not the first time that Hezbollah has snuck across the border (from Lebanon EVERY TIME) and kidnapped Israelis, killed soldiers, destroyed people's homes, etc. However, each time before this Israel has reacted in the same way - no reaction at all, or appealing to UN for sanctions, whatever. At the end of the day, with the same result, which is the death of Israelis and destruction of their propery.

So I ask you, if you are Ehud Ahlbert (sp.?), what would you do?

Lebanon is not controlling the terrorists that are coming across the border to kill/kidnap Israelis. How do you address that problem?

It is definitely a gray area and the same basic problem as invading Afghanistan or Iraq (even though Israel has more solid proof than the US as far as Iraq goes). How do you punish countries that "harbor" terrorists?

Now you know what I'll say: I fully support the right of Israel to strike hard against Hezbollah. They are not targeting citizens although it is a shame that citizens including children are dying. Let me give you a situation: A bank robber comes into Utah and robs a bank, kills a bankteller and flees to Colorado. Utah police chase him and catch up to him in Denver where he takes a CO woman hostage. There is a shootout and UT police shoot him and the woman is hit in the crossfire and dies. Is it the UT policeman's fault?

I don't think it is a black and white problem. I think you can easily defend either position. It's obvious that where you stand on this conflict will be where you stand on the Iraqi conflict because it is the same question:

Does one country have the right to invade another country (with casualties to innocent citizens) in order to chase an enemy that has inflicted severe damage?

Denis, do you believe Israel's intent is to exterminate Lebanon? If so, what proof do you have of that? It's not about Lebanon defending itself against Israel. Israel is at war with Hezbollah.

One final point, and think about this one. If Hezbollah dropped it's weapons today, there would be peace. If Israel dropped it's weapons today, Israel would cease to exist.

Thanks again for your opinions and comments. Open exchange is the true way to enlightenment. ;)


At 13 August, 2006 23:38, Blogger Nico said...

Maximus, let me respond to you a in a couple of points;

This is not the first time that Hezbollah has snuck across the border (from Lebanon EVERY TIME) and kidnapped Israelis, killed soldiers, destroyed people's homes, etc. However, each time before this Israel has reacted in the same way - no reaction at all, or appealing to UN for sanctions, whatever. At the end of the day, with the same result, which is the death of Israelis and destruction of their propery.

++++Hezbollah is a terrorist group and that will not change. It’s tactics will not vary and I think that all of us are on the same page there. They are up to no good. But what is being done is not hurting the terrorist nearly as much as the Palestinians, innocent people that have nothing to do with this offensive, women and children, 800 + so far that have been murdered. Again, this is not a war against a country but against a terrorist group and my last example still stands, you cannot level a country or a nation with all the innocent people because there are terrorists believed to be amongst them. Mussed claims to be one of the best secret police in the world, go in there, find them and either bring’em to justice or eliminate them.
As far as Israel reacting the same way every time they get attacked, I agree with you on the portion where you say they have reacted the same way. They have invaded the West Banks and have had colonies for the last 25 yrs in there just until last year. In case you didn’t know that is an illegal practice as the UN 25 declared it years ago. They didn’t need to go anywhere the citizens and the military were already in their soil. Secondly they have been systematically destroying crops, buildings, etc. and have been keeping cities under siege for months. Any of the main cities in Lebanon have been on average over 200 days out of the year under curfew and that’s a fact. That means, no school, grocery shopping, going to work, nothing!!! You are grounded in your house for days and weeks while tanks and raids occur on the outside. Tell me, how would you feel if that was your hometown? Please tell me that you don’t still think that Israel did nothing to respond. As you usually say on this type of conversations find me evidence that this is happening in a different way because for over two decades this types of aggressions have been going on and everyone is aware of it. ;)

So I ask you, if you are Ehud Ahlbert (sp.?), what would you do?

Lebanon is not controlling the terrorists that are coming across the border to kill/kidnap Israelis. How do you address that problem?

+++As I responded above take care of them in a rational way and not as a barbaric nation. They are losing every bit of respect from the international community and putting themselves at the same level as they people they call terrorist. Dropping bombs from an F-16 into a school is no different than someone strapping a bomb to their chest and walking into the building. It is the same outcome, the killing of innocents Terrorism after all.

It is definitely a gray area and the same basic problem as invading Afghanistan or Iraq (even though Israel has more solid proof than the US as far as Iraq goes). How do you punish countries that "harbor" terrorists? You are right about Israel having more proof since US had NONE about Iraq, show me the money!!! (but that is another story). I do not believe that Lebanon is harboring terrorism on purpose; many of those people are fighting against them already. It would be a war of brother against brother, or in other words, a civil war, which at this time it is unthinkable of for obvious reasons.

Now you know what I'll say: I fully support the right of Israel to strike hard against Hezbollah. They are not targeting citizens although it is a shame that citizens including children are dying. Let me give you a situation: A bank robber comes into Utah and robs a bank, kills a bankteller and flees to Colorado. Utah police chase him and catch up to him in Denver where he takes a CO woman hostage. There is a shootout and UT police shoot him and the woman is hit in the crossfire and dies. Is it the UT policeman's fault?

+++Okay, I think this is a valid point. But lets suppose for a minute that these type of robberies occur for some crazy coincidence every other day during a month and that every day there is a lady or a child being shot by the UT policeman, what would happen to the public opinion? And to the UT policeman? Probably him and his whole dept. including the governor would be folding sheets at the state penitentiary ;) Sorry but too many mistakes, too many “shootings” including the killing the death of 3 UN observers at the UN compound. It has been documented that they contacted the Israeli govt. 10 times the same day to tell them to stop bombing their compound. Didn’t stop until they got it right.

I don't think it is a black and white problem. I think you can easily defend either position. It's obvious that where you stand on this conflict will be where you stand on the Iraqi conflict because it is the same question:

Does one country have the right to invade another country (with casualties to innocent citizens) in order to chase an enemy that has inflicted severe damage? Yes you are right, it is an ongoing debate here in the US and in Britain. To me, no country has that right and in history some of them paid dearly for that mistake i.e. Germany, Japan. They saw they Chinese, Jews, etc. as their enemy because they were killing their economy, and felt self righteous enough to attack other countries because of their own views of “justice” and “nationalism”. I am sorry but I have never agreed with that type of politics and never will.

Denis, do you believe Israel's intent is to exterminate Lebanon? If so, what proof do you have of that? ++Hehehe+++ It's not about Lebanon defending itself against Israel. Israel is at war with Hezbollah.

One final point, and think about this one. If Hezbollah dropped it's weapons today, there would be peace. If Israel dropped it's weapons today, Israel would cease to exist.

+++Okay, I thought about this one and I somewhat agree with it. However Israel is not doing any favors to itself by having this kind of belligerent behavior on the occupied territories (Neither the US or Britain with their political stance and weapons dealing). It is drawing more hate towards itself from the surrounding countries with these types of actions. They need to deal with this conflict on another manner, just like the rest of the developed countries have been dealing with terrorism even before their nation was established. I have a couple of ideas but it would be very lengthy to type up. My final thought is that just we need to treat our neighbor as we want to be treated, and I am sorry but I don’t see any hints of them (Israel) giving a tenth of respect of what they are demanding from its neighbor countries and from the rest of the world. Thanks.


At 14 August, 2006 11:24, Blogger bla said...

Ok I swear I posted something on this and it never got through! So I guess I'll have to do it again. I finished reading the "Ender Series" books a month ago and it related to this in a way. In the first book the 6 year old hero Ender (who at that age already is a genius tactician)is cornered by a bully in the bathroom. The intent of the bully if I remember right (I read the first book a long time ago while I was still in Utah) wanted to hurt or even kill Ender. However Ender, being the genius that he is, is able to turn the table around and the bully ends up on the floor while Ender stands. At this time he realizes that the bully will never forgive him this and will come back, so this thought and the anger in him make him continue hitting the bully until he kills him. The author uses this analogy throughout the rest of the books where an entire race of species is about to be destroyed just to make sure that the threat will never come to exist again. Now I should also say that the young boy Ender never forgives him for what he did to the bully, so don't think the author actually portrayes that as a good thing. In fact throughout the rest of the books Ender attempts to stop any such possibility.

Anyways why did I think of this when I read the posts and all the comments is because the situation is very similar. It doesn't matter who you place in which role. You can say Israel is the bully since they're stronger and are attacking right now, but when I read this I saw it the other way around. As Maximus said this isn't the first time that Israel has been terrorised, so I see Hezbollah as the bully and Israel trying to not just defend, but end the threat once and for all. Now I know none of us here like the way Israel is doing it, but from what I see the thought behind it is this. "We can try and solve these issues peacefully, cooperate with Lebanon and try to catch Hezbollah, meanwhile Hezbollah will keep doing what they do and keep hurting us OR we can suffer some casualities and eliminate the threat once and for all perhaps sooner than we would if we do it peacefully." Don't think I'm saying it's right, but I'm just trying to analyze what is done. Now can you really blame them for thinking in such a way? How long has Hezbollah existed in Lebanon and what has the government done to stop them?

You're right when you say it's a similar situation to Iraq. It's also similar to Russia vs. Chechnya issue. The Chechens have been terrorising Russia for so long I don't even remember when it all started. Moscow bombings used to happen so often, hearing it on the news wasn't surprising anymore. Russia tried to take control of Chechnya situation the same way as US did with Iraq and the same way as Israel is right now. Maybe additional motives exist in each one, but the picture is the same - there is a threat, we can try to stop it peacefully while the only person who is getting hurt is us, or we can take stronger actions.

There isn't a side to take here. Well the only side is the one that's against Hezbollah. But you can't say that Israel doesn't have rights to hurt Lebanon citizens while citizens of Israel are getting hurt. You are viewing the situation from the side that's getting hurt right now, but put yourself in the position of an Israeli that is told his/her son just got kidnapped and killed. Then put yourself in the position of another one who is told the same thing, and another and another. Who has more rights to live? They both have the same rights to live. There are no good solutions to these problems. You can't tell me peaceful solution is better because then it's better for who?

Finally I just wanted to say that it's so unfortunate that because of groups like Hezbollah innocent people get hurt left and right. The blame I place on the Lebanon and Israeli deaths is on Hezbollah. I don't understand how people can ever praise those groups and not realize that all the deaths on their own side is because of it.

At 14 August, 2006 13:51, Blogger Nico said...

Let me just say a couple of things to conclude my posting on this matter. Nobody is going to change their point of view so no point to keep discussing it. First of all you say "Now I know none of us here like the way Israel is doing it," well that's is exactly what I am pointing out on this post, so therefore we either agree on this subject or you are contradicting yourself. By the way not all of us feel bad, Maximus for what he has written in his previous post, does not agree with your statement.

It is also interesting that you mention Chechnya when the US was condemning Russia for attacking those people and ready to apply economical sanctions against Russia for its actions. What's different this time? Oh yes... Guess what type of planes Israel is flying?, or missiles are firing? how about which tanks they are using? $$$ makes the conscious a lot quieter than usual. By the way, did they ever eradicate terrorism in Chechnya, how about Iraq 3 years after? how about in Lebanon 25 years after? Today 800 dead innocent civilians after with the peace treaty, after bombing the heck out of the country and destroying their entire infrastructure, do you think Hezbollah has disappeared? I think not. In fact I think the terrorist group probably has increased, that all those people that have died, mothers, sisters, fathers, have relatives that are pretty upset right now and that in no time will strike against Israel. Those people have nothing to eat, no crops to plant, no roads to communicate, no electricity, no running water. How about putting yourself in their shoes? Violence is not the answer, and killing innocent people is not the way. Again let me reemphasize that Hezbollah IS NOT Lebanon and that they have been paying for what a terrorist group has been doing to Israel. Is this what we believe justice is? Is this what we have learned in our lives and in our religion? Will you carry on a type of action like this yourself? Or just because someone else is doing it for you it makes it alright? I don't think so.

At 14 August, 2006 14:57, Blogger bla said...

Nico I disagree with your first point. It's definately worth discussing it! That's part of the reason why we made the blog, so our friends can share their opionions and we all learn from eachother.

I don't think you understood the meaning behind my comment. I didn't say that what Israel does is correct, but I also wanted to point out that it's usually easy to see the struggles of the weaker country and pass the ones of the stronger. Just like you said with Chechnya - US criticized Russia for doing what they did because they couldn't see the struggles and the lives that Russia lost. They just saw Chechnya as the underdog and this big bully Russia picking on them. Well that all changed after Sept. 11th. You see my point?

I think you misunderstood Max as well. I don't think anyone here is so heartless that they don't feel compassion towards all those innocent lives on both sides and I'll admit more so right now on the Lebanon side because Israel is stronger.

As far as putting myself in the shoes of the people of Lebanon, I never said I didn't. Once again it goes back to what I just wrote that I was trying to balance the picture because it's easier to see the struggles of Lebanon (again admitedly a lot more right now than Israel). I haven't been in the exact position of Lebanon, but I've lived in a country that had electricity perhaps an hour a day and no water, my country still doesn't have natural gas, etc etc. So I can relate to a very very small degree. But I have to admit that if my family got hurt or killed I don't know if I'd be able to sit and do nothing.

Finally I have a question - if Lebanon begins bombing Israel as an answer just like Israel is doing now would you feel bad for Israel? Would you say that Lebanon is doing the wrong thing? Would they be? I don't know. But like I said earlier, becaue of some maniac group so many innocent lives have to suffer it's not fair, it shouldn't be, but like you said - Hezbollahs and the likes thereof will never cease to exist.

At 14 August, 2006 21:03, Blogger Nico said...

Bla, first of all thank you for your first remark. I have to agree with you. Point taken. I must say that at times I feel the bias of people around me that just use the TV, radio news (which are mostly quite biased to me) to try to argue points about present and past politics with no more knowledge about these occurrences that just what they took at face value from the 9 o’clock news or some “Hardball” debate. I think it is sad.

I don’t take the killings in Israel for granted either. Terrorism is what it is no matter where, and as I have written previously Hezbollah should be eliminated, period. But what I think is a shame is that countries such as the US/Britain have NEVER (pre or post Sept. 11th ) condemned an act by Israel under the astonishment of rest of the world, furthermore the have vetoed resolutions from both UN and EU to do so under everyone else’s consensus to post a resolution.

Let’s take as an example the Russian campaign in Afghanistan. The Russians where going against the Taliban, deemed terrorist by the Russians, who was selling all the RPG’s, rifles, etc. etc. to the Taliban? The US. Who was fighting with the Taliban and was trained by CIA field agents on how to fight the Russians? Bin Laden my friend. Funny, isn’t it? Has the World changed so much since Sept. 11th that what was wrong is right and vice versa? I’ll leave that up to you.

As far as your last question goes. My answer is still the same for both sides. I would bother the heck out me if Lebanon started bombing Israel major cities and killing hundreds of innocent people while in search of terrorist. I do not care about either of these two countries’ political agendas it just makes me sick what is happening to the innocent. My other question for you is this one. Do you think US/Britain would have reacted the same way in this conflict had the Lebanese purchased the weapons from US/Britain instead of the Israelis? I think so.

Should we do the same thing with ETA? After them killing hundreds of innocent civilians and policemen as they have done since the 60’s, should we go back and retaliate with the Basque country mowing down cities, destroying bridges, electrical plants, sea ports, etc. etc. Most important of all, should we kill hundreds of innocent civilians while doing it just as “collateral damage”? Not me. Just because a hand-full of people, probably less than 1% of the population are into terrorism or harboring terrorist, I would not make pay the rest of the population for their evil doing. We would be lowering ourselves to their vile actions, even if we were killing these people from sophisticated stealth fighters or satellite blasts for all I care, to me that is still KILLING and having the blood of innocent people in my hands, just like the blood of the innocents the terrorist have in their hands. Do you see what I mean?

To me what’s happening is unfortunately not news, It has occurred throughout the World’s history, but what I think it is unbelievable is that in the 21st century countries can get away with barbaric actions like this one while other more powerful nations watch the killings with apathy and permissiveness. One month later after Israel has done everything they wanted and some more there is a peace treaty, could not this have occurred a month ago before all these killings went on? You beat, just with one call even, just from the right governments.

At 15 August, 2006 04:10, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maximus, sorry I didn't respond earlier.

First of all I don't think that Israel tries to exterminate Lebanon. All I'm saying is that Israel should not have bombed civilians. I don't know what the reason is for that but I'm sure there is one however it's definitely twisted and unjustifiable.

This kind of bais occured in the history again and again when some groups get away with doing anything they want and others get punished for the same thing. I already mentioned one example of that before but here is a better one. How about the terrorist act (Yes you read it right) committed by USA in the end of World War II? I'm referring to the nuclear bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. You probably don't think so but I do and here are some reasons why:

- Neither of these cities had troops inside or nearby the city at the time of bombings
- Japanese famous "one million troop" army already surrendered at that time.
- They weren't industry centers that were important for war
- Japan was already on it's knees and there were ABSOLUTELY no reason for bombings

To me those were acts of terrorism because it was an attack on innocent people. Some Americans say it was a revange for Perl Harbor. Well the casualties just don't add up unless you want to kill 100 Japanese civilians for each American solder.

Same thing is happening here. I agree with Nico that it doesn't matter if it's a suicide bomber walking into a school or an F16 dropping a bomb on that school it's still an act of terrorism and it needs to stop. I support Israel in doing something to defend themselfes against the attacks but I do not support them killing innocents for the sake of revenge (or whatever else their reasoning behind it is).

Regarding Chechnya. Russian constiturion is set up in such a way that any district if they are willing can separate into it's own country. When the conflict just started there was a voting by Chechnya population and by majority vote they decided to stay as part of Russian Federation. Since then all Russia was trying to do is stop bombings in it's cities and protect people living in or nearby Chechnya from terrorists.

At 22 August, 2006 15:13, Blogger Random said...

Wow. This is a really interesting discussion! Something happened on my lappy and I couldn't see all these responses!! (I still thought there were only 2)

I only have a couple of questions. (Socratic method? :->)

1. Can you conceive a situation where war is necessary?

Probably we can agree that at times it is necessary. We probably disagree about when. However, accepting that war is necessary means accepting some collateral damage. That is the nature of war. There can be no war without some innocent people dying. That is the ugly and evil nature of war.

I do not think there was any way to defeat the Axis powers in 1940's without war. You could not negotiate, placate, make treaties, or any other solution. It was either accept their domination of the world or fight. Fighting meant that innocent lives were lost.

2. Did Israel reach the point of war against Hezbollah?

3. Did Russia reach the same point v. Chechnya?

Anyway, I would like to respond to points made by nico and denis by delineating a key difference that you seem to be equivocating. You seem to think that killing in war is the same as killing in terrorism. They are not the same at all. You cannot morally equate those two things. If you do, then then you justify the actions of terrorists, especially if you answered question #1 in the positive.

In my opinion, terrorism cannot be tolerated. Meaning that in my mind, Israel, Russia, Spain, England, USA, and any other victim of terrorism has the right to ruthlessly hunt and kill terrorists whereever they are. Lebanon is not trying to kill Hezbollah. On the contrary, Lebanon and Iran are supporting Hezbollah.

Denis, you have an interesting view of the Japanese slaughters. I disagree with you about terrorism on the US's behalf based on the war argument that I have been presenting. My grandfather fought the Japanese in the Pacific, received the Medal of Honor, the Purple Heart, and several other medals there. Some of your facts are not accurate regarding the circumstances of those desperate acts, at least based on my research and experience (limited though it is).

I'm not sure we're getting anywhere though, so I would like to start a new post with another angle on what is going on in the world.

At 22 August, 2006 18:47, Blogger Nico said...


Glad you could find the post again. Now going back to the discussion...I must say that I agree with you in the point that "terrorism cannot be tolerated" (as I repeatedly have said in this threat) but I believe that terrorism is being practiced on both sides. By they way, do you want to define for me what the term “Terrorism” means? It is a word that has been used endlessly since Sept. 11th. Funny how nobody seemed to care about it before then in the White House or at 10 Downing Street, isn’t?

Anyway, as it has been asked several times in this thread, is there a difference in the murder of 65 civilians by a home-made explosive in a cafeteria downtown Tel-Aviv and the murdering of 65 civilians in building caused by a 2000lbs laser guided missile? NO. It's all the same. Both are killings in cold blood; High tech terrorism, nothing else. Governments have and still do practice terrorism. By the way let me give you the definition of "Terrorism" by the FBI: "The unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives." Has not Israel been doing this (specially the “political or social” part) as well as Hezbollah?, heck yeah!!! That’s exactly my argument and why I started this threat, Israel is equating its actions to those of Hezbollah and practicing they same type of destruction which they have proclaimed to the World they despise so much. Money is the difference here; don’t you think Hezbollah would use F-16’s, F-18’s, tanks and Patriot missiles if they had them? Let’s open our eyes and not be so biased!!!

About your point on every country in the World chasing terrorism "has the right to ruthlessly hunt and kill terrorists wherever they are" I do not agree with you, not this way, not killing over 800 innocent people to kill a handful of terrorist, if so. That’s not collateral damage, that’s murder. Of course, I know it is kind of hard to think of it as collateral damage if we think of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, so I don’t think I am going to raise any eyebrows, here anyway. It is good to be on the winner’s side isn’t? Would we think and act the same way if it was not the case?

If we (the World) were to carry out this type of barbaric actions just like Israel has been doing in the past month killing innocent civilians left and right with impunity, the World, as we know it, would have disappeared many decades ago. Anarchy would be the only type of political stance anywhere. I do no not believe in war as an answer to every problem or thread as many of you do. Thank goodness that most of the people in the World think alike in this sense because if not countries like Israel and the US amongst others would have ceased to exist long time ago because of other countries’ rage and their “right” to exercise their “right” to answer any invasion or attack by another nation in a reciprocal way. That would be a shame. It is good to be on the winner’s side isn’t?

By the way, it is Iran and Syria the countries that are being accused of helping Hezbollah and NOT Lebanon. If that was the case, the Lebanese army would have responded to Israeli fire during its offensive, and that did not occur.

At 23 August, 2006 07:12, Blogger bla said...

Man and here I thought this post was retired lol. Actually no I didn't since I was wondering where Max was! Nico you said that killing 65 people is terrorism on both sides, but think about it, if you were in Israel wouldn't you rather it be Lebanon - where you know Hezbollah comes from, than your own? I know you would rather neither sides have any casualties, but that's not the choice in front of you. It's either your own people suffer and die from terrorist attacks, or Lebanon suffers while Israel tries to fight off Hezbollah. I'm not saying it's the right thing, but still. At the same time I'm sure the innocent civilians of Lebanon are mad because they didn't do anything to bring this on them and yet there it is pouring down from the sky. The enemy in every case is the government. Lebanon government (I don't think saying Lebanon really makes it true because I'm sure most of the people want the war to stop) really doesn't seem to try and do anything about Hezbollah as Max pointed out, and I think you would agree that if Israel wanted to investigate peacefully and try to catch the terrorists Lebanon government would never assist them because of the hate between the two countries. So it seems like the only way Israel could "enforce" that is by going out in an open war.

So my question is this: Is there another solution that Israel could try and use? And please don't tell me they have the best police/investigators because as I just mentioned Lebanon government would NEVER cooperate and allow those forces to investigate inside Lebanon.

At 23 August, 2006 08:50, Blogger gurgentus said...

Nice discussion guys. I've been following this post for a while, and everytime I wanted to make a point, by the time I formulated it somebody already posted a similar thought. However, now after thinking about this some more I will make a point that I don't think I saw yet. The main issue so far has been that of whether means justify the result, but not too much has been said about the actual result. Are we sure that, even if we accept Israel's actions as justified (which I am not sure I do), are we sure that the result will decrease the amount of terrorism? For every Hezbollah destroyed, are we sure there won't be 10 new ones created?
Anyway, I watched a movie (Sword of Gideon) yesterday which is pretty much the same story and plot as the new Munich movie that came out recently (in fact so similar I am not sure why Spielberg decided to remake it), but that lead me thinking about not just the justification, but also about the result of what Israel is doing right now. Is it really going to change anything even if Hezbollah is destroyed?

At 23 August, 2006 12:29, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great point Gurgentus. I totally agree with you. All terorist organizations like Hizbollah do is bring more and more popularity to extreme actions as means or voicing protest. On the contrary they bring less and less trust from average folk toward islam followers.

Trying to exterminate it as Izrael did by envading part of Lebanon will truly only breed more terrorist. And these new terrorists would be brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers and children oh those regular Lebanon citizens killed by "accident" by Israel bombings. Killing will just bring more killing.

There is no easy solution to this problem, and obviously World still didn't come up with one better than simply beating the sh*t out of those at fault (and those leaving nearby those at fault). Maybe we need to look more toward people like Mahatma Gandhi rather than always trying to create the next ultimate killing machine. Just a thought.

Now my response to you Maximus. :)

If you're saying than killing Lebanese, Japanese (as I mentioned in example given) is collateral damage then Nazi extermination of Jews in WWII is collateral damage too and we don't need to all get worked up about it. Right?

I don't think that any of mentioned above classifies as collateral damage. It's murder and we need to accept it as that. There are ofcourse extreme measures against terrorists that can be taken. In WWII what Nazis did to fight against Russian guerillas (terrorists for them) is they would come to nearest village and for every Nazi soldier that was killed they would at random kill 10 villagers, for every officer they would kill 50. After that any villager would think 10 times before helping guerilla ever again. Should we accept that as jastified means? Or maybe that's a little too harsh?

I'm not saying that war was or wasn't necessary, all I'm saying is that killing regular citizens is murder and doesn't matter if it's done by terrorists or some other country like Israel, US, Russia or whichever else.

I guess in a way it all comes down to the ultimate question: "Could you kill a child to save humanity from all desease? 100 children? 1,000,000?" Does the means really justify the cause? Hitler answered yes to all of these questions again and again. Are we the same as Hitler? Or are we somehow above that question all together?

At 23 August, 2006 19:14, Blogger Random said...

Gurgentus and all,

I like the way you put things, and actually the question of means vs. ends really is the ultimate question. It seems for me, the ends and outcomes of World War 2 do justify the ruthless killing of many innocent people by the Allies. As sad as I am to say it, I must resign myself to that kind of violence because since we live in an unfortunate ruthless world, I believe that the Ghandi approach cannot work.

Although Munich (I haven't yet seen 'Sword of Gideon') is an amazingly well made and important movie, it definitely shows a moral equivalence of terrorism and killing of terrorists, which I disagree with. To dramatize the response of Israel as equivalent to the slaughter of Olympians is wrong to me. But I understand that denis and nico see it differently and I think you guys make a very strong case as to why.

As a response to your comment about changing things ultimately, I guess for me, hope is alive. Meaning that just because it seems like an insurmountable task to wipe out terrorism, we should not stop trying to kill the ones responsible, and yes, employ many ruthless, necessary means to do it. I will not give into them, I will not surrender my country, my government, or my way of life to them. I believe by giving them an inch, you give them a mile. We see the truth of that now with Hezbollah. Many muslims all over the world (Dearborn MI, London, Iran, Syria) are now chanting, "Hezbollah is my army. Victory to Hezbollah!" because they defeated Israel. Now that to me is scary. I will post a new post on that.

I suppose my problem has been the same for me my entire life: I believe in a black and a white, a right and a wrong. I honestly believe that terrorists should not be afforded the same rights or moral equivalences given to those gov't's, countries, people trying to kill them. The issue to me is the same as fighting the Axis powers in World War 2, we should take painful steps marred with violence to put down and exterminate terrorism.

One counterpoint to your reasoning is this: Do you think they will stop killing if we do, or if US pulls out troops, or if Israel gives up Jerusalem? Do you believe that any terrorist would hesitate to chop the head off of anyone in this blog given the chance? Do you know who their enemy is? Infidels. Who are infidels? It is not the U.S. Marines. It's not Israel. It's all of us who are not muslim. If Israel puts down their weapons, they die. If Hezbollah puts down their weapons, peace comes. Explain how those two groups are morally the same, or how Ghandi's solution applies.

Gurgentus, what do you think can be done to help? If killing one group creates 10 more, how do we deal with it?

Denis, do you believe that the Jewish extermination is equivalent to Hiroshima?

At 23 August, 2006 20:11, Blogger bla said...

Well all good points. I thought and thought and thought about it and really there is no solution. You can say well lets do this peacefully, but then people get hurt because terrorists don't stop no matter. And then you can say we need to hunt down the terrorists with any means necessary, but then people get hurt again. And it's all about who gets hurt. I mean if you're Israel, you don't want these people coming and killing your people and if you're Lebanon you don't want to suffer what they're suffering right now. None of the solutions justify the means whether "peaceful" or an all out war.

I hope none of us ever have to be on either of the sides of the choices and instead be surrounded with mutual understanding and respect because I think that's all it comes down to. And I'd say all of us here on the blog are doing just that - respecting eachother even if sometimes our opinions don't match.

At 24 August, 2006 01:12, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reason I brought Ghandi is because he was one of the few in the history of the World that tried to overcome trials peacefully. I don't know the solution to the problem. Neither war nor peace seems to be the answer. That was just a shot in the dark. Maybe any of us has a solution?

When I think about this problem one example always comes to mind. In LDS church instead of preaching that abortion is bad they preach love within a family. Maybe that's what we need to do, change the mentality of the people, think outside the box and maybe the problem would be eliminated altogether by higher vertues and standards. What do you guys think?

Maximus, you said that it's not muslims who are in danger, well I don't think it's the case. It's everyone, regardless of religion (look at Sunnis vs. Shiites).

Now let me answer you question regarding Heroshima. I believe it was different, because of the reasons behind it. Nazis were trying to eliminate Jews for many defferent reasons one of which is Hitlers personal dislike of that nation. Did you know that if he would win against USSR he would leave some 20 million or so of slavic people alive so they can work on factories and exterminate the rest?

I'm a strong believer in countries acting only in terms of their self interest and nothing else (which in turn is the self interest of those in power). Do you really believe that US went into Iraq because Iraqis were suffering? Or because Iraq had weapons of mass distruction? That's what they used for justification but the reasons will remain hidden and we can only guess what they were.

That being said Heroshima to me is nothing more than a place to test a new weapon (nuclear bomb) while it can still be said that it needed to happen to defeat Japan. I don't blame soldiers for that. No, it's the fault of US goverment that ordered that bombing.

You don't have to go that far in history to see another example of that. If I remember correctly clustered bombs are forbidden by UN but US used it in Balkans to bomb innocent people in the last conflict that happen there.

The question I have for those in power that order these kind of bombings, how can they sleep at night after knowing how they killed children because some new weapon needed testing on life people? How can they look at their own children, smile and keep living a normal life? To me these people are monsters and they are not in any way better than terrorists. Terrorists at least die for a holy idea (in the mind of a suicide bomber) while these people just do it for ther personal benefit.

At 25 August, 2006 14:54, Blogger gurgentus said...

Maximus, regarding your question, I don't have a solution, and maybe a war is the correct solution in a lot of situations (like WWII as you mentioned). I am not saying that everything should be done peacefully, sometimes force is required, I just don't see it working in this case at least in the way it is being executed. Already, it is becoming clear that what happened in Lebannon did not fix anything. Even Israel population (something like 60% I heard in the news) are calling for Israel's new prime minister to resign, because the invasion/bombing of Lebannon did not do anything other than kill innocent civilians and Israeli soldiers. I want to reiterate my point, I will not fill a single drop of pity for any terrorist being killed, but at the same time killing several initiators of attacks at the cost of lives of civilians and soldiers without any larger effect on solving a problem becomes just a vendetta of a sort. When there is a murderer on the run, police would never sacrifice lives of innocent people to catch and punish this murderer no matter what his crime.

On the other hand, I understand and agree with what you are saying, the guilty should be punished, but I think this should be extremely well planned. Every point should be weighted against its counterpoint, otherwise we are left with a situation where it is unclear what has really been accomplished.

Anyway, as bla said, there really may not be a solution, and all we can do is discuss this problem and hope that somewhere there is a solution for this 21st century plague called terrorism.


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