June 29, 2006


The Real Roots Of Mideast Terrorism (Rutland Herald)

One of the definitions of terrorism in my dictionary states, "a mode of governing or of opposing government by intimidation" and a terrorist is "one who favors or practices terrorism."

So to fight terrorism in the Middle East, our folks in Washington want us to install democracies in much of this region. I am very much opposed to the U.S. telling any country what kind of government they should have. If they live in a monarchy or under a dictator, so be it. That is their business, not ours.

Yes, I would agree that family members and/or friends of the king or the dictator will live rather nicely. Perhaps much better than the average citizen in that country. But I don’t have to look very hard before I see that those in power in this country, namely our senators in Washington, have voted themselves a much better retirement program than they give the average worker in this country. Are they on Social Security? No way, but then that is the way governments work, any and all governments.

So what does the kind of government a nation has in the Middle East have to do with terrorism? Nothing really! So many in the Arab world despise us not because we are a democracy while they may live under a dictator or a king. They despise us for one reason and one reason only—the way we are treating some of the Arabs in the Middle East, namely the Palestinians.

For more than 50 years, the U.S. has given Israel billions of dollars in economic and military aid. And what has Israel done with these billions? Israel has built settlements in occupied land, which the entire world (except Israel and the U.S.) has said is not right. Additionally, they have built a military force that far exceeds any and all of its neighbors, including the atom bomb. What we have given the Palestinians is peanuts compared to the aid to Israel.

And now our latest gimmick. The folks in Washington persuaded the Palestinians to become democratic and have a free election and elect a government of their choice. So they had this free election and elected a government by the name of Hamas. How could this happen in a democracy? Ask the folks in Washington. So Washington’s respose to this election was to cut off all aid to the Palestinians, as small as it might be, compared to Israel’s.

And who suffers the most—the mostly innocent folks, the poor, the children, the sick, the elderly, etc. If you were a parent struggling to feed your family in occupied land, how would you feel?

Our Middle East foreign policy is simply creating more volunteers to become suicide bombers. Are these folks terrorists? Yes, they are. But how about when Israel sends a plane, provided by us, to bomb an apartment building, housing a suspected terrorist, and kills innocent men, women and children. Isn’t this also an act of terrorism? I certainly think so. But the folks in Washington don’t think it is.

Terrorism was once described as waging a war on innocents to break their political leaders. It would appear to me that this is exactly what the folks in Washington allow Israel to do, but when the Palestinians respond with a suicide bomber, that is a terrible thing. And Washington wonders why so many in the world hate us.

Bob Long


This was one of the letters to the editor a couple of weeks ago in our local weekly fishwrap, The Randolph Herald. I read it in the paper edition, but had to wait for it to come to the free online section before posting it.

I like the way the author draws a moral equivalence between Saddam filling mass graves and Congress voting themselves a pay raise.

And of course, it's all the fault of the JOOOZ! How dare they try to defend themselves! What monsters!

Posted by Bryan Francoeur at June 29, 2006 1:05 PM

Probably a native who still resents the hippie invasion of 1967-72. Urban Jews were emblematic of that hairy horde. Most famously Ben, Jerry, and Bernie.

(I read the Herald on-line every week, BTW.)

Posted by: ghostcat at June 29, 2006 2:14 PM

'Cept that it's becoming more and more common to hold such views.

Especially since Mearsheimer and Walt have encouraged a lot of the smoldering resentment to leach out of the woodwork.

It all makes so much sense---just as long as you don't have to look at the awesome conspiracy of the Israel Lobby too carefully.

(And why look at it too carefully if it all makes so much sense?)

Posted by: Barry Meislin at June 29, 2006 5:31 PM


Then why are red state evangelical Christians like me still the bogeymen in the Jewish community? Must be a matter of style over substance I guess.

Posted by: Jeff at June 29, 2006 6:04 PM

Bob forgot how we treated Egypt, Saudi, Kuwait, Quatar, Oman, UAE, Jordan, etc. It was horrible -trade, joint military excercises, military sales, financial aid, loans, grants, visas, support in the United Nations - just like we provide Israel.

Posted by: KRS at June 29, 2006 7:50 PM

Jeff --

Secular Jews who've cast their lot with the liberal wing of the Democratic Party as their deity over their own religion are naturally going to be suspicious of people near them who take their faith seriously (and while the problem is definitely still with us, it's nowhere near as bad as it was 25 years ago).

Posted by: John at June 29, 2006 8:43 PM
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