I knew the events in the Middle East were big when the New York Times devoted nearly as much space to them as it did to a New York court ruling last week rejecting gay marriage.
Some have argued that Israel's response is disproportionate, which is actually correct: It wasn't nearly strong enough. I know this because there are parts of South Lebanon still standing.
Most Americans have been glued to their TV sets, transfixed by Israel's show of power, wondering, "Gee, why can't we do that?"
Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean says that "what's going on in the Middle East today" wouldn't be happening if the Democrats were in power. Yes, if the Democrats were running things, our cities would be ash heaps and the state of Israel would have been wiped off the map by now.
But according to Dean, the Democrats would have the "moral authority that Bill Clinton had" – no wait! keep reading – "when he brought together the Israelis and Palestinians." Clinton really brokered a Peace in Our Time with that deal – "our time" being a reference to that five-minute span during which he announced it. Yasser Arafat immediately backed out on all his promises and launched the second intifada.
The fact that Israel is able to launch an attack on Hezbollah today without instantly inciting a multination conflagration in the Middle East is proof of what Bush has accomplished. He has begun to create a moderate block of Arab leaders who are apparently not interested in becoming the next Saddam Hussein.
There's been no stock market crash, showing that the markets have confidence that Israel will deal appropriately with the problem and that it won't expand into World War III.
But liberals can never abandon the idea that we must soothe savage beasts with appeasement – whether they're dealing with murderers like Willie Horton or Islamic terrorists. Then the beast eats you.
There are only two choices with savages: fight or run. Democrats always want to run, but they dress it up in meaningless catchphrases like "diplomacy," "detente," "engagement," "multilateral engagement," "multilateral diplomacy," "containment" and "going to the UN."
I guess they figure, "Hey, appeasement worked pretty well with ... uh ... wait, I know this one ... ummm ... tip of my tongue...."
Democrats like to talk tough, but you can never trap them into fighting. There is always an obscure objection to be raised in this particular instance – but in some future war they would be intrepid! One simply can't imagine what that war would be.
Democrats have never found a fight they couldn't run from.
On "Meet the Press" last month, Sen. Joe Biden was asked whether he would support military action against Iran if the Iranians were to go "full-speed-ahead with their program to build a nuclear bomb."
No, of course not. There is, Biden said, "no imminent threat at this point."
According to the Democrats, we can't attack Iran until we have signed affidavits establishing that it has nuclear weapons, but we also can't attack North Korea because it may already have nuclear weapons. The pattern that seems to be emerging is: "Don't ever attack anyone, ever, for any reason. Ever."
The Democrats are in a snit about North Korea having nukes, with Howard Dean saying Democrats are tougher on defense than the Republicans because since Bush has been president, North Korea has "quadrupled their nuclear weapons stash."
It wasn't that difficult. Clinton gave the North Koreans $4 billion to construct nuclear reactors in return for the savages promising not to use the reactors to build bombs. But oddly, despite this masterful triumph of "diplomacy," the savages did not respond with good behavior. Instead, they immediately set to work feverishly building nuclear weapons.
But that's another threat the Democrats do not think is yet ripe for action.
On "Meet the Press" last Sunday, Sen. Biden lightly dismissed the North Koreans, saying their "government's like an eighth-grader with a small bomb looking for attention" and that we "don't even have the intelligence community saying they're certain they have a nuclear weapon."
Is that the test? We need to have absolute certainty that the North Koreans have a nuclear weapon capable of hitting California with Kim Jong-Il making a solemn promise to bomb the U.S. (and really giving us his word this time, no funny business) before we – we what? If they have a nuclear weapon, what do we do then? Is a worldwide thermonuclear war the one war Democrats would finally be willing to fight?
Democrats won't acknowledge the existence of "an imminent threat" anyplace in the world until a nuclear missile is 12 minutes from New York. And then we'll never have the satisfaction of saying "I told you so," because we'll all be dead.
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