Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Putting The Peace Movement In Perspective

For those of you who wish to spend your time minimalizing, degrading and demoralizing the peace movement I have one thing to say to you. More power to you. I guess if my mind was saturated with shameless propaganda, manipulated into believing that hatred and violence were acceptable concepts to support, and shrouded in such fear that the idea of waging death and destruction on my fellow human beings was somehow a mature and appropriate means of conflict resolution, I too would have to find a way to belittle those who think differently than I. I would have to make them my opponents and attack their characters, motives and actions. How else could I live with myself and maintain my sanity?

I can't imagine how desperate I would become and to what measures I would have to stoop, if truth and human decency were absent from my thought process on a daily basis. I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I supported a foreign policy that is destroying the lives and property of citizens of this world everyday in the name of freedom and democracy, and turned out to be based on a pack of lies perpetrated by war criminals who I endorsed and brought to power. I don't think that I could bear the shame.

And it couldn't be more clear how desperate and shameful the warmongers and their supporters have become then by their actions today in Washington DC. At this point they are so threatened by the peace movement that they felt the need to arrest one of it's greatest proponents, Cindy Sheehan. Her crime...being a grieving mother who had the audacity to demand an audience with her commander in chief. The nerve. How dare she. To think that she would be so bold as to attempt to hold accountable and demand answers from those responsible for the needless and senseless death of her precious child. Who does she think she is?

Well guess what? She is me and the millions upon millions of human beings on this planet who work for and believe in peace. Peace is not just the absence of violence. It is a way of life. It is a way of being. It is a way of coexisting on a planet filled with diverse cultures made up of unique human beings. It is understanding that we are all interconnected, that each human life is of value, and that no one race or country is superior to another or has the right to impose their way of thinking or way of life upon others, especially by force.

It is tolerance, it is accepting that which is different, it is being mature and responsible. It is treating others as we expect to be treated. It is conducting ourselves humanely, decently, morally and ethically. It is the only path to real freedom and security.

Yes, peace is the absence of violence, but it is also encompasses the belief in the dignity and value of all human beings and of our planet. And those of us who work for peace have the most powerful weapon at our disposal...righteousness. For those of you who wish to discredit the peace movement I wish you luck. History may eventually become the judge of our actions today, but the children of the world will ultimately become the benefactors of these actions tomorrow. And they will remember what each and every one of us has done to impact their destinies.

Tonight I stand before you as a proud member of the peace movement. As a mother standing in solidariy with Cindy Sheehan I dedicate my life's work to my children Reya and Dominic and to the memory of Casey and all the fallen heroes of this illegal and immoral war both here and in the Middle East.

As you lay awake tonight in the capital of the greatest democracy on earth, having committed no crime other than grieving for your beautiful little boy, I wish you comfort in your grief. Blessings and may peace be upon you, Cindy. REMEMBER...YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

In peace and solidarity,
Mary AlKhaja

4 Comments:

Blogger Lompoc Lamb said...

"War is hell" - that sort of sums up the technical discussion of a war.

I don't believe that anyone in their right mind would support an activity that has a goal of destroying whole towns or the killing and maiming thousands of combatants and innocent by-standers. Negotiation should be the weapon of choice, but when it fails, we are left with hostile action to resolve the dispute.

When we elect a President there is a whole host of supporting and unelected, people who make up the “administration”. Some are better at it than others are, but the bottom line is that America has been periodically at war since our founding and despite the best efforts of anti-war constituencies, the trend will probably continue.

War is a serious issue and it requires more thought than is given to deciding who will get the biggest slice of pork from the next federal budget. Maybe this decision is too big for our elected leaders to handle, but who else can make this commitment?

When America enters into a war, the Congress must approve of the action. They are our elected representatives and shouldn’t recklessly lead us into combat. The United Nations can “lead” us into battle as well when they seek to serve as a “peacekeeping” force in some remote corner of our earth.

People who genuinely advocate peace are not the issue. You are to be commended for bringing attention to a serious issue. People who corrupt your movement with anti-American rhetoric or partisan political “agendas” diminish your message. Of course, you may have difficulty keeping their message separate from yours if there is a camera within a mile or two of your demonstration.

The latest “peace march” in Washington attracted many groups who support Americas’ enemies. They are America’s enemies because they advocate the destruction of the United States and all we stand for, specifically the freedom to express ourselves when we feel that we have been wronged.

Many people have difficulty separating the legitimate Peace Movement from the anti-American groups who have attached themselves, leech like, to your message. Divorcing yourselves from them in the minds of many isn’t possible because of their lengthy history of showing up when you raise questions about the war of the moment.

I agree that peace is the better alternative to war, but I have lived for over 60-years and I cannot think of any time that the world has been at peace. In fact, if we look at history there has not been one time in recorded history that the world was at peace.

There is a message here, world peace won’t happen in our lifetime and it may never occur as long as there is more than one culture to disrespect another on the face of the earth.

10:41 AM  
Blogger NewsstandGreg said...

Oh, Mr. Lompoc Lamb. The United States has been involved in wars of:

Necessity. The Revolutionary War (1775-1783), War of 1812 (1812-1815), Mexican War (1846-1848), Civil War (1861-1865), Spanish American War (1898-1902), World War I (1917-1918), World War II (1941-1945), Korean War (1950-1953), Afghanistan (2001).

Unexplained National Interest. Bay of Pigs Cuba Invasion (1961); Vietnam (1964-1972), Dominican Republic (1965); Lebanon (1982-1984); Grenada (1983); Panama (1989); Gulf War (1990-1991) and Iraq 2002.

Well-intended Actions. Somalia (1993), Bosnia (1994-1995), Kosovo (1999).

Speaking as a Vet, I agree war "is a serious issue" and no one "in their right mind would support" it. Yet, there are those who do support the various wars in the name of the USA which have occured every 20 to 30 years since America was founded.

You say "the bottom line is that America has been periodically at war since our founding and despite the best efforts of anti-war constituencies, the trend will probably continue." This is your opinion, certainly.

Isn't it a lot like saying "it's always been this way, so we better give up?"

If you want war to continue, step up and beat the drums for it. If you want more peace, then welcome to the sane members of society who are doing something every day toward a more peaceful world.

1:59 PM  
Blogger Spectator said...

Pull out of Iraq? Fuzzy thinking!

You want gas in your car? You want heating oil next winter? You want jobs?
You want the dollar to be worth anything? You better hope the
Jihad, which is nothing more than a Muslim Inquisition, loses and the Islamic Reformation into democracy wins.


HOWEVER THERE ARE FAR GREATER STAKES.

If the US withdraws and Muslim Inquisition wins, their next action will be to push Israel into the sea. One has only to listen to the recent speach from the President of Iran calling for the destruction of Israel.

As the 4th largest nuclear power on earth, Israel will not let this happen over their dead body - and the dead bodies of everyone else in the region. Left alone, with only their own resources to defend themselves, they would have little other choice.

That is the event all of US policy in the region is designed to prevent.

Do we have to explain to anyone what the economic and political impact of a war that annihilates 1 third of the world's population and leaves the world's major reservoir of energy uninhabitable for a century or more?

That is what our men are fighting to prevent. 2000 lives may be 2000 more than we would like, but it is a whole lot less than the alternative."

12:36 PM  
Blogger Spectator said...

To newstand: An historical perspective on recent wars.

Sixty-three years ago, Nazi Germany had overrun almost all of Europe and hammered England to the verge of bankruptcy and defeat, and had sunk more than four hundred British ships in their convoys between England and
America for food and war materials.

Bushido Japan had overrun most of Asia, beginning in 1928, killing
millions of civilians throughout China, and impressing millions more as slave labor.

The US was in an isolationist, pacifist mood, and most Americans and Congress wanted nothing to do with the European war or the Asian war.

Then along came Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 and in outrage Congress unanimously declared war on Japan, and the following day on Germany, which had not attacked us. It was a dicey thing. We had few allies.

France was not an ally. The Vichy government of France aligned with its German occupiers. Germany was not an ally, it was an enemy, and Hitler intended to set up a Thousand Year Reich in Europe. Japan was not an ally, it was intent on owning and controlling all of Asia. Japan and Germany had long-term ideas of invading Canada and Mexico, and then the
United States over the north and south borders, after they had settled control of Asia and Europe.

America's allies then were England, Ireland, Scotland, Canada, Australia, and Russia, and that was about it. There were no other countries of any size or military significance with the will and ability to contribute
much or anything to the effort to defeat Hitler's Germany and Japan, and prevent the global dominance of Nazism. And we had to send millions of tons of arms, munitions, and war supplies to Russia, England, and the Canadians, Aussies, Irish, and Scots, because none of them could produce all they needed for themselves.

All of Europe, from Norway to Italy, except Russia in the east, was already under the Nazi heel.

America was not prepared for war. America had stood down most of its
military after WWI and throughout the depression; at the outbreak of WWII there were army units training with broomsticks over their shoulders because they didn't have guns, and cars with "tank" painted on the doors
because they didn't have tanks. And a big chunk of our navy had just been sunk and damaged at Pearl Harbor.

Britain had already gone bankrupt, saved only by the donation of $600
million in gold bullion in the Bank of England that was the property of Belgium and was given by Belgium to England to carry on the war when Belgium was overrun by Hitler. Actually, Belgium surrendered in one day, because it was unable to oppose the German invasion, and the Germans bombed Brussels into rubble the next day anyway just to prove they could.
Britain had been holding out for two years already in the face of
staggering shipping loses and the near-decimation of its air force in the Battle of Britain, and was saved from being overrun by Germany only because Hitler made the mistake of thinking the Brits were a relatively minor threat that could be dealt with later and turning his attention to Russia, at a time when England was on the verge of collapse in the late
summer of 1940.

Russia saved America by putting up a desperate fight for two years until the US got geared up to begin hammering away at Germany. Russia lost something like 24 million people in the sieges of Stalingrad and Moscow,
90% of them from cold and starvation, mostly civilians, but also more
than a million soldiers. More than a million. Had Russia surrendered,
then, Hitler would have been able to focus his entire campaign against the Brits, then America, and the Nazis would have won that war.

Had Hitler not made that mistake and had invaded England in 1940 or 1941, there would have been no England for the US and the Brits to use as a staging ground to prepare an assault on Nazi Europe. England would not have been able to run its North African campaign to help take a little
pressure off Russia while America geared up for battle, and today Europe would very probably be run by the Nazis--the Third Reich. Isolated and without any allies (not even the Brits), the US would very probably have had to cede Asia to the Japanese, who were basically Nazis by another name and the world we live in today would be very different and much
worse. I say this to illustrate that turning points in history are often dicey things. AND we are at another one.

There is a very dangerous minority in Islam that either has, or wants and may soon have, the ability to deliver small nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons, almost anywhere in the world, unless they are prevented from doing so.

France, Germany, and Russia, have been selling them weapons technology as recently as 2002, as have North Korea, Syria, and Pakistan, paid for with billions of dollars Saddam Hussein skimmed from the "Oil For Food" program administered by the UN with the complicity of Kofi Annan and his
son.

The Jihadis, the militant Muslims, are basically Nazis in Kaffiyahs -
they believe that Islam, a radically conservative (definitely not liberal!) form of Wahhabi Islam, should own and control the Middle East first, then Europe, then the world, and that all who do not bow to Allah should be killed, enslaved, or subjugated. They want to finish the Holocaust, destroy Israel and purge the world of Jews. This is what they
say.

There is also a civil war raging in the Middle East - for the most part not a hot war, but a war of ideas. Islam is having its Inquisition and its Reformation today, but it is not yet known which will win - the Inquisition, or the Reformation.

If the Inquisition wins, then the Wahhabis, the Jihadis, will control the Middle East. Then the OPEC oil, and the US, European, and Asian economies, the techno-industrial economies, will be at the mercy of OPEC - not an OPEC dominated by the well-educated and rational Saudis of today, but an OPEC dominated by the Jihadis.

You want gas in your car? You want heating oil next winter? You want jobs? You want the dollar to be worth anything? You better hope the Jihad, the Muslim Inquisition, loses, and the Islamic Reformation wins.

If the Reformation movement wins, that is, the moderate Muslims who
believe that Islam can respect and tolerate other religions, and live in peace with the rest of the world, and move out of the 10th century into the 21st, then the troubles in the Middle East will eventually fade away, and a moderate and prosperous Middle East will emerge.

We have to help the Reformation win, and to do that we have to fight the Inquisition, i.e., the Wahhabi movement, Al Qaeda and other Islamic terrorist movements. We have to do it somewhere. We cannot do it
everywhere at once so we have created a focal point for the battle now, at the time and place of our choosing, in Iraq. Not in New York, not in London, or Paris, or Berlin, but in Iraq, where we did and are doing two very important things.

(1) We deposed Saddam Hussein. Whether Saddam Hussein was directly
involved in 9/11 or not, it is undisputed that Saddam has been actively supporting the terrorist movement for decades. Saddam is or was a terrorist, a weapon of mass destruction, who is responsible for the deaths of probably more than a million Iraqis and two million Iranians.

(2) We created a battle, a confrontation, a flash point, with Islamic terrorism in Iraq. We have focused the battle. We are killing bad guys there and the ones we get there we won't have to get here, or somewhere else. We also have a good shot at creating a democratic, peaceful Iraq,
which will be a catalyst for democratic change in the rest of the Middle East, and an outpost for a stabilizing American military presence in the Middle East for as long as it is needed.

The Europeans could have done this, but they didn't, and they won't. We now know that rather than opposing the rise of the Jihadist, the French, Germans, and Russians were selling them arms - we have found more than a million tons of weapons and munitions in Iraq. If Iraq was not a threat
to anyone, why did Saddam need a million tons of weapons?

And Iraq was paying for much of these French, German, and Russian arms with money skimmed from the UN Oil For Food Program that was supposed to pay for food, medicine, and education, for Iraqi children.

World War II, the war with the German and the Japanese Nazis, really began with a "whimper" in 1928. It did not begin with Pearl Harbor. It began with the Japanese invasion of China. It was a war for fourteen years before America joined it. It officially ended in 1945 - a 17 year war - and was followed by another decade of US occupation in Germany and Japan to get those countries reconstructed and running on their own again
. .. . a 27 year war.

World War II cost the United States an amount equal to approximately a full year's GDP - adjusted for inflation, equal to about $12 trillion dollars, WWII cost America more than 400,000 killed in action, and nearly
100,000 still missing in action.

The Iraq war has, so far, cost the US about $180 billion, which is
roughly what 9/11 cost New York. What will the next hit cost in dollars and lives if we wait until the Jihadist have nuclear weapons?? It has also cost over 2,000 American lives. The Jihadist murdered 2,800 on
9/11.

But the cost of not fighting and winning WWII would have been
unimaginably greater - a world now dominated by German and Japanese
Nazism.

Americans have a short attention span, conditioned I suppose by 60 minute TV shows and 2-hour movies in which everything comes out okay. The real world is not like that. It is messy, uncertain, and sometimes bloody and ugly. Always has been, and always will be.

If we do this thing in Iraq successfully, it is probable that the Reformation will ultimately prevail. Many Muslims in the Middle East hope it will. We will be there to support it. It has begun in some countries, e. g. Libya, Dubai and Saudi Arabia. If we fail, the Inquisition will probably prevail, and terrorism from Islam will be with us for all the foreseeable future, because the Inquisition, the Jihadist,
believe they are called by Allah to kill all the Infidels, and that death in Jihad is glorious.

The bottom line here is that we will have to deal with Islamic terrorism until we defeat it (or are defeated by it), whenever that is. It will not go away on its own. It WILL NOT go away if we ignore it.

If the US can create a reasonably democratic and stable Iraq, then we
have an "England" in the Middle East, a platform, from which we can work to help modernize and moderate the Middle East. The history of the world is the clash between the forces of relative civility and civilization,
and the barbarians clamoring at the gates. The Iraq war is merely
another battle in this ancient and never-ending war. Now, for the first time ever, the barbarians are about to get nuclear weapons unless WE prevent them.

The Iraq war is expensive, and uncertain, yes. But the consequences of not fighting and winning it will be horrifically greater. We have four options:

1. We can defeat the Jihad now, before it gets nuclear weapons.

2. We can fight the Jihad later, after it gets nuclear weapons which
may be as early as next year, if Iran's progress on nuclear weapons is what Iran claims it is.

3. We can surrender to the Jihad and accept its dominance in the Middle East, now, in Europe in the next few years or decades, and ultimately in America.

4. Or we can stand down now, and pick up the fight later when the Jihad is more widespread and better armed, perhaps after the Jihad has dominated France and Germany, which is well underway, and maybe most of the rest of Europe. It will be more dangerous, more expensive, and much
bloodier then.

Yes, the Jihadist say that they look forward to an Islamic America. If you oppose this war, I hope you like the idea that your children, or grandchildren, may live in an Islamic America under the Mullahs and the Sharia (Islamic law as dictated by the Qur'an), an America that resembles
Iran today.

We can be defeatist peace-activists as anti-war types seem to be, and concede, surrender, to Jihad, or we can do whatever it takes to win this war against it.

The history of the world is the history of civilizational clashes
-cultural clashes. All wars are about ideas, ideas about what society and civilization should be like, and the most determined always win.

Those who are willing to be the most ruthless win. The pacifists always lose, because the anti-pacifists kill them.

In the 20th century, it was Western democracy vs. communism, and before that Western democracy vs. Nazism, and before that Western democracy vs. German Imperialism. Western democracy won, three times, but it wasn't
cheap, fun, nice, easy, or quick. Indeed, the wars against German
imperialism (WWI), Nazi mperialism (WWII), and communist imperialism
(the 40-year Cold War that included the Vietnam War, itself a major battle in a larger war) covered almost the entire century.

The first major war of the 21st Century is the war between Western
Judeo/Christian Civilization and Wahhabi Islam. It may last a few more years, or most of this century. It will last until the Wahhabi branch of Islam fades away, or gives up its ambitions for regional and global dominance through Jihad, or until Western Civilization gives in to the
Jihad.

Senator John Kerry, in the debates and almost daily, makes 3 scary
claims:

1. We went to Iraq without enough troops.

We went with the troops the US military wanted. We went with the troop levels General Tommy Franks asked for. We deposed Saddam in 30 days with light casualties, much lighter than we expected.

The real problem in Iraq is that we are trying to be nice - we are trying to fight a minority of the population that is Jihadi, and trying to avoid killing the large majority that is not. We could flatten Fallujah in minutes with a flight of B52s, or seconds with one nuclear cruise missile - but we don't. We're trying to do brain surgery, not amputate the
patient's head. The Jihadis amputate heads.

2. We went to Iraq with too little planning.

This is a specious argument. It supposes that if we had just had the right plan the war would have been easy, cheap, quick and clean. That is not an option. It is a guerrilla war against a determined enemy and no such war ever has been or ever will be easy, cheap, quick, and clean. This is not TV.

3. We proved ourselves incapable of governing and providing security.

This too is a specious argument. It was never our intention to govern and provide security. It was our intention from the beginning to do just enough to enable the Iraqis to develop a representative government and
their own military and police forces to provide their own security, and that is happening. The US and the Brits and other countries there have trained over 100,000 Iraqi police and military, now, and will have trained more than 200,000 by the end of next year. We are in the process
of transitioning operational control for security back to Iraq.

It will take time. It will not go with no hitches. This is not TV.

Remember, perspective is everything, and America's schools teach too little history for perspective to be clear, especially in the young American mind.

The Cold War lasted from about 1947 at least until the Berlin Wall came down in 1989. Forty-two years. Europe spent the first half of the 19th century fighting Napoleon, and from 1870 to 1945 fighting Germany.

World War II began in 1928, lasted 17 years, plus a ten year occupation, and the US still has troops in Germany and Japan. World War II resulted in the death of more than 50 million people, maybe more than 100 million people, depending on which estimates you accept.

The US has taken a more than 2,000 KIA in Iraq. The US took more than
4,000 killed in action on the morning of June 6, 1944, the first day of the Normandy Invasion to rid Europe of Nazi Imperialism. In WWII the US averaged 2,000 KIA a week for four years. Most of the individual battles of WWII lost more Americans than the entire Iraq war has done so far.

But the stakes are at least as high . . . a world dominated by
representative governments with civil rights, human rights, and personal freedoms . . . or a world dominated by the radical Islamic Wahhabi movement, by the Jihadist under the Mullahs and the Sharia.

I do not understand why the American Left does not grasp this.

They favor human rights, civil rights, liberty and freedom, but evidently not for Iraqis. In America, absolutely, but nowhere else.

300,000 Iraqi bodies in mass graves in Iraq are not our problem. The US population is about twelve times that of Iraq, so let's multiply 300,000
by twelve. What would you think if there were 3,600,000 American bodies in mass graves in America because of George Bush? Would you hope for another country to help liberate America?

"Peace Activists" always seem to demonstrate where it's safe - in
America. For this privilege, they should thank US veterans.

Why don't we see Peace Activist demonstrating in Iran, Syria, Iraq,
Sudan, North Korea, in the places in the world that really need peace
activism the most?

The liberal mentality is supposed to favor human rights, civil rights,
democracy, multiculturalism, diversity, etc., but if the Jihad wins, wherever the Jihad wins, it is the end of civil rights, human rights, democracy, multiculturalism, diversity, etc. Americans who oppose the
liberation of Iraq are coming down on the side of their own worst enemy.

If the Jihad wins, it will be the death of Liberalism..in fact..of all of us.

Sadly, American Liberals just don't get it.

1:24 PM  

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