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Thursday, January 07, 2010

Oh Boy, Here We Go Again

Just like Rich Lowry, Victor Davis "Give Me More War" Hanson simply ignores the reason terrorists themselves give for the actions, and replaces those with his preferred explanation:

"All of this has not been lost on Islamists. In general, al-Qaeda interprets our outreach as a sign of moral weakness. Since 9/11, more than one-third of all terrorism-related incidents in the United States occurred in 2009 alone. Maj. Nidal Hasan’s murderous rampage at Ford Hood, and al-Qaeda’s foiled Christmas Day effort to blow up a jet over Detroit, are just precursors of what to expect this year."

But, as I pointed out in another blog, the terrorists themselves were very clear why they did what they did. The jet bombing was retaliation for our attacks in Yemen. Hasan was outrages that Obama wasn't pulling out of Afghanistan. These reasons don't justify terrorist attacks, but I see no reason not to believe they were the real motivation behind the terrorists actions.

Consider what we would think if Hanson tried to give this kind of spin to an ordinary crime. Let's say a man shoots his wife, and then confesses, "I did it because she would get drunk and hit me, and I couldn't take it anymore." And let's assume there is plenty of evidence, say, previous police reports and so on, that she did assault him. Now, that doesn't justify the shooting -- he should have just left. But what would people think if Hanson came along and said, "See, the problem is she stopped beating him so much, and her display of weakness emboldened him"? Well, we would think he was a crackpot, right? And so he is, but he's a crackpot who gets a national stage from which to declaim his crackpot views.

And in the case of terrorism, there's even more reason to believe the criminals avowed motives than there is in an ordinary crime. After all, the terrorist is committing his crime in order to get the other side to stop doing whatever it is he wants them to stop. So it defeats the whole idea behind terrorism to lie to the other side about what your grievances are.

Come on folks, it's time to grow up and stop using embracing these childish fantasies about what's going on.

5 comments:

  1. After all, the terrorist is committing his crime in order to get the other side to stop doing whatever it is he wants them to stop. So it defeats the whole idea behind terrorism to lie to the other side about what your grievances are.

    That's a great point Gene, but of course VDH et al. would come back and say, "We don't dispute that the Islamists want us to abandon Israel and leave it to their depredations. We are saying that even if we did all that they request, they would still hate us and eventually we would have to fight them in self-defense. Hitler wasn't lying when he said he wanted the Sudetenland either."

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  2. OK, I'll have to figure out a snappy comeback to that one.

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  3. OK, I don't think I lose much oomph here with your correction. My main point has been that it's absurd to use these incidents for their thesis.

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  4. Right I agree Gene. BTW how much oomph did you start out with?

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  5. More than little cat Z.

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