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Courts Don't Liberate By: Nonie Darwish
FrontPageMagazine.com | Wednesday, February 26, 2003


After seeing the worldwide peace demonstrations last weekend, I have to admit that my confidence in human judgment, wisdom and learning from history has been greatly diminished. These demonstrators never stood by or demonstrated for the victims of the cruelty of Saddam. They do not see the relationship between their demonstrations and the empowerment of the terrorists, who will not miss one opportunity to terrorize the West. Saddam has a sick mind, burdened with pride and arrogance, yet he is being strengthened and legitimized by these demonstrators.

Many of these demonstrators have different motivations -- mostly naïve idealism. However, all protest organizers agree on one thing: they hate America and want to see it transformed from the democratic and capitalist entity that it is.

Many American and European leftists have become accustomed to the routine of Western style freedom. They love to burn the U.S. flag only because it is the biggest and most powerful country that will allow them to dissent. They think that all issues can be settled in a court or by UN bureaucrats just because it is only ‘fair.’ Oh, they believe in fairness but never think about how fairness is achieved; they have forgotten that human beings have always had to fight for their freedom, that it is never given for free. Freedom is not granted to nations by powerful courts or even good leaders. Freedom is a never-ending struggle. It is achieved and cherished through human striving and the pursuit of happiness. And the absence of war is not necessarily a state of happiness.

When Christianity was weakened all over the Middle East and Europe in the seventh century, Christians ‘turned the other cheek’ and the result was that Islam conquered one-third of the world, including the holy land of Jerusalem, claiming it for Islam. That was the result of not resisting and the policy of appeasement. It brought to humanity the worst struggle in human history, one that has still never ended: the Arab/Moslem struggle against Israel and Judaism, and the Christian West. This is more than a cultural clash; it is an avalanche of unfinished business.

The U.S. is actually exhibiting great restraint and self-control in the face of terrorism. In spite of this (or perhaps because of it) we are subjected to never-ending images of these self-hating, manipulative and manipulated demonstrators. There is no question that we have a legitimate cause to go to war with Iraq and end the instability of possible terror from Saddam’s operations. Americans must not put too much value on world opinion, since it was America itself that got hit on 9/11. The U.S. should never fall into a policy of appeasement with people who will not be satisfied until they crush the United States and the West under the heel of sharia. The terrorists did not strike France or Germany - they struck at the heart of America, and we have the duty to protect ourselves from such terror.

Much has been said, pro and con, about the war with Iraq. The West is indulging in a never-ending debate. This is healthy to an extent, but has turned into a game of delaying the inevitable, and that result is inevitably to our disadvantage. The debate game has now been manipulated by Saddam himself, who is feeding the so-called peace movement’s stalling tactics, which have aided and abetted Hussein's insanity. One thing the peace advocates must realize is that Saddam himself is the weapon of mass destruction. Perhaps internal instability and complacency are the inevitable bi-products of long periods of wealth and stability lead to this complacency....

Unfortunately our media pundits seem to be all too willing to allowing this useless charade to continue indefinitely. Many Arab countries who are aiding the U.S. in its war efforts are also aiding the anti-war movement; they speak from both sides of their mouths. This worked in the old days of local and international divisions in the media. However, this double-face in Middle East politics is now exposed for what it is.

Colin Powell’s speech to the UN should not have been a surprise to any well-informed journalist. The bottom line is that the safety of the U.S. from any future terrorist attacks cannot be accomplished as long as Saddam Hussein remains in power. Superficial endless debates will not help us combat terrorism. We have no choice but to get rid of this dictator, who I believe will not hesitate to give (or sell) terrorists access to biological and chemical weapons. Indeed, he may have done so already.

Iraq has been a danger in the Middle East for a decades. It is well known for having a violent political history and brutal past, even before Saddam Hussein. I believe that you get the leaders you are accustomed to. Iraqis are incapable of getting rid of Saddam on their own; they have become used to this kind of leadership. However, with our help, the Iraqi people can be liberated and given the opportunity to experience a change of direction toward democracy. An improving American (and world) economy will be but one side benefit of removing the Iraqi threat.

It is very hard to bring democracy to the Middle East, and I don’t doubt that the future of Iraq might end up in the hands of other dictators. We can only try to lead the world into democracy; we cannot force it on them. It has to come from within. But that should not stop us from taking out Saddam and his toys of mass destruction and set him as an example to other would-be dictators in the area.

When I was a child in the Middle East, I was once accidentally exposed to horrific pictures of torture of Iraqis; naked bodies hanging to die. Some were being dragged by cars to their deaths. It was similar to the style of brutality we in the West associate with the Middle Ages or to the crucifixions of Jesus Christ’s time.

Later, as a young woman in the Middle East in the late Seventies, I noticed that several neighbors who were retired army officers were being hired to work in Iraq, where their expertise was in demand. Iraq was steadily recruiting and hiring many retired military and leftist Arabs to work for them. I learned later that some never returned to their homeland.

At the time, none of this really caught my attention as being unusual, since most Middle East countries were always mobilizing for war against Israel. I now look back on these events and realize what Iraq, even before Saddam, was doing; it was filling the power vacuum left after Egypt signed its peace treaty with Israel. Iraq’s military buildup eventually resulted in one of the strongest militaries in the world, and all this power and oil money fell in the hands of a megalomaniac. Saddam Hussein would be a joke if the story weren’t so tragic. The video images (which he encourages) of fearful citizens kissing his hands while he is shooting bullets in the air and wearing an outfit out of a mafia movie (clothing fashion that is totally alien to Arab culture) make him appear ludicrous to any intelligent person. He wants to be the second Gamal Abdel Nasser, revolutionary leader of Egypt who brought pride of Arab nationalism against the West.  Indeed Saddam aspires to nothing less than being the hero and savior of a united (by and under him) Arab world and in his mind nothing is going to stop him.

The natural consequence of the military buildup, of course, was war; first with Iran, then Kuwait, firing Scud missiles over Israel and killing his own people in the most savage way. I truly believe that if Saddam is left in office, terrorism will thrive and fear will be in the background of any thinking American's mind, undermining America’s psyche and economy.

The misguided ‘peace-loving’ Americans portray Saddam Hussein and the Iraqi people as our victims! With all the history of Saddam, his obvious mental illness, and the many testimonies of Iraqi defectors, we are still debating the legitimacy of war and needing proof that he is dangerous!

Since President Bush was elected, the world has seen a U.S. media that disrespects its president and his legitimacy. I was in Paris before 9/11 and saw CNN belittle President Bush at every opportunity. I was told by a French woman that Bush is an idiot and a cowboy. When I asked her why she thought so, she answered “Don’t you listen to the news? That is what your American Media says!” And we wonder why some European countries hate us.

The Left in America uses international opinion to influence our government, and many foreign countries enjoy the power this gives them over the U.S. I heard the same U.S. media’s constant criticism of Bush when I visited my Middle East homeland for the first time in 20 years. My visit was an eye-opener to the rapidly accelerating anti-American propaganda and lies in the various Middle East newspapers. Unfortunately, CNN was not helping much to counter the Arab media’s misinformation and lies. Many Arab homes watch CNN, but what I saw and heard nightly was simply outrageous. CNN seems to think that journalistic objectivity means taking an anti-U.S. position at every turn.  The propaganda against Bush works in the Middle East; I have read many Arabic articles confirming this. Some Western media are emboldening the enemy and orchestrating an international campaign against Bush.

As an American of Arab origin, I laugh every time I hear someone in the media asking “How can you prove that Saddam and al-Qaeda are cooperating?"  How can anyone imagine that two outlaw organizations with a common enemy would not cooperate? They are both Moslem, Arab and live in the same neighborhood. Do these same people doubt that a fire can ignite when matches are struck near gasoline?

The danger from Iraq and its weapons of mass destruction is real. What is also real is an angry and hostile Moslem/Arab population whose media says that America and Israel are the cause of all their problems; it is a perfect lie to divert the attention of a vulnerable population from the corruption and atrocities of dictatorships. Arabs and their media have more sympathy towards Saddam Hussein and Iraq and more hostility and envy of the tiny victim country of Kuwait! Not surprising for a culture that only respects power.

It is sad to see the antiwar activists undermining President Bush and wishing him to fail when that can only mean harming the U.S. as a whole. They think the Democrats will come along and save the day afterwards, but a Bush failure will only compound the trouble inflicted by 9/11.

President Clinton closed his eyes to the terrorist attacks. He weakened our intelligence and ignored the cancer of terrorism. That may have gone unreported in our liberal media, but it did not go unnoticed in the Middle East. President Clinton missed many opportunities to have the great legacy he so desperately wanted. Instead of choosing to face the threat early on, he chose to bomb an aspirin factory. He only tried to give the impression that he was doing something by creating an image of a response to terrorism. In return, he was never criticized in the mainstream media or by the peace lovers, unlike the current president. He thought he could fool the Moslem extremists, but they sensed and were emboldened by his weakness. Later, they were further emboldened by reports that the younger Bush is an "idiot."

The sight of the twin towers and pentagon in flames should unify America against Middle East terror. Make no mistake, the so-called peace lovers are aiding and abetting the enemy. From a U.S. citizen of Arab origin, to the naïve American ‘peace at any expense’ lovers, I say, “Wake up!” The world is watching us and we have to unite behind our President in a war we cannot ignore.

As long as Saddam remains in power, their will be fear, death and persecution in Iraq, and fear and economic uncertainty in the world. Ignoring terror won’t make it go away.

Saddam’s influence is massively destructive.  It is time we got rid of him.


Nonie Darwish is an American of Arab/Muslim origin. A freelance writer and public speaker, she runs the website www.ArabsForIsrael.com. Her new book is Cruel and Usual Punishment: The Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law.



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