Friday, March 26, 2004

Op-Ed Columnist: The Wrong War: "The United States had been the victim of a sneak attack worse than the attack at Pearl Harbor. It was an act of war, and the administration had a moral obligation (not to mention the backing of the entire country and most of the world) to hunt down and eradicate the forces responsible."

No, Bob, you're wrong. And if we have another 9/11, it's people like you who will be to blame. If the Commission hearings this week have established anything, it's that this mindset is precisely to blame for the first attack.

What we've learned is that, despite clear warning from the 1993 bombing, Khobar Towers, and the Cole, we did not pursue terrorists and try to erradicate the causes. Allow me a gardening metaphor: if you find aphids on one bud, and you spray just that bud, you will soon have an infestation; you must spray all buds if you truly want to prevent the aphids from taking over. Terrorism works the same way. Even if, following September 11, we fully erradicated every single member of Al Quaida, who could believe that another organization wouldn't spring up in its place?

Iraq is the key because it is our best shot at completely changing the Arab world. Listen to Gaddafi's son, Seif, who spoke this week on the occasion of Blair's visit to Libya:

"'Instead of shouting and criticizing the American initiative, you have to bring democracy to your countries, and then there will be no need to fear America or your people,' said Seif al-Islam Gadhafi. 'The Arabs should either change or change will be imposed on them from outside.'
Seif denied reports that he is a candidate to succeed his father, who rules Libya with little tolerance of opposition.
'Many Arab countries are now following the policy of inheriting the leadership, but there are hundreds of Libyans who are better (suited) than I,' Seif said.
Seif even praised Israel, saying that unlike Arab countries, sons do not tend to succeed their fathers in power there.
'We don't put the appropriate person in the right place, but Israel is a democratic country,' told the Al-Jazeera television station."
(from Guardian Unlimited | Gadhafi's Son: Bush Plan Should Be Backed)

Iraq is the key to changing the world. When we have liberal democracy in the Middle East, when people can choose their own destiny, and technology can thrive independent of a completely restrictive theocracy, terrorism will begin to disappear.

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