DEMOCRATS ON THE WRONG SIDE OF HISTORY (AGAIN)
First off, Howard Dean signed his own Presidential Death Certificate when he said that the capture of Saddam doesn't make the US safer. This is a guy the American people are suppose to vote into office because they think he will do a better job protecting Americans than President Bush? Since the capture of Saddam we have been able to launch raids against insurgents thanks to intelligence that was obtained with Hussein. And now there is news that Saddam's agents were able to infiltrate the US Command in Iraq, thereby perpetrating attacks from the inside:
"Among the documents found in Saddam's briefcase when he was captured last weekend was a list of names of Iraqis who have been working with the United States either in the Iraqi security forces or the Coalition Provisional Authority and are feeding information to the insurgents"
So now I am really confused as to how capturing Saddam Hussein hasn't made Americans safer, so please DOCTOR Dean, explain.
A classic quote from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi in a statement in December 1998 supporting President Clinton's four-day bombing of Iraq:
"Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process. The responsibility of the United States in this conflict is to eliminate weapons of mass destruction, to minimize the danger to our troops and to diminish the suffering of the Iraqi people."
In other news, Israeli Prime Minister gave what is the most important speech concerning the American lead "Road Map to Peace" yesterday which will have a drastic impact upon the nature of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict very soon. You can read the text of Sharon's speech at the Herzliya Conference here
, or read some of the points I will focus on below.
For starters Sharon made an important point that the main goal of Israel as a state isn't peace with the Palestinians or the Arab/Muslim World. The sole goal Eretz Yisrael (The Land of Israel) is Aliyah, or the ecouragement of Jews to move to Israel and become Israeli citizens; put simply the Jewish State isn't going anywhere. Much to the chagrin of Yasser Arafat and the rest of the tyrants in the Arab/Muslim World.
He also calls for the easing of restrictions upon everyday Palestinians:
"Israel will remove closures and curfews and reduce the number of roadblocks; we will improve freedom of movement for the Palestinian population, including the passage of people and goods; we will increase the hours of operation at international border crossings; we will enable a large number of Palestinian merchants to conduct regular and normal economic and trade relations with their Israeli counterparts, etc. All these measures are aimed at enabling better and freer movement for the Palestinian population not involved in terror"
I feel this is a good move by Sharon. I have said for a while that the people I really feel sorry for in this whole conflict is the Palestinian people. It is the Palestinian people who suffer under the rule of the terrorist and murder Yasser Arafat, not his wife who lives in the French Rivera on an American expense account and off of monies that Arafat has stolen from the UN and other NGOs. It is the Palestinian people who don't get to see their sons and daughters grow up and be successful doctors, scholars and/or artists because the terrorist infrastructure of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah, has so brainwashed them into thinking that walking into a cafe and blowing themselves up is the most important thing their lives could possibly accomplish. So in a way this is Sharon's masked statement of solidarity with the Palestinian people, he very well knows that Arafat & Co. are responsible for the state of the Palestinians and not Israel.
Second big move by Sharon:
" I have committed to the President of the United States that Israel will dismantle unauthorized outposts. It is my intention to implement this commitment. The State of Israel is governed by law, and the issue of the outposts is no exception. I understand the sensitivity; we will try to do this in the least painful way possible, but the unauthorized outposts will be dismantled. Period."
No one who wants a real solution to the Palestinian-Israeli problem can deny that Jewish settlement building into the West Bank is a huge problem in a final status agreement. And Israeli agreed, by signing the Road Map, to dismantle "settlement outposts erected since March 2001 (Road Map, Phase I)". Sharon had tried and was successful in removing a few settlements but no sooner had he done so that Israel was again attacked by suicide bombers. The dismantling of settlements was to be seen as a reward to and as a response to Palestinian leadership actively rooting out and dismantling terrorist organizations in the West Bank and Gaza. This clearly did not, and has not, happened; so why should Sharon be the one to me making unilateral decisions? Unfortunately, the answer is because Israel is a democracy. Accordingly Democracies stand for freedom, integrity, morality, and being the light when all else is dark (see WWII, Cold War, War on Terror). So now Sharon has decided to remove the outposts that are both an obstacle to peace as well as a strain on the capabilities on the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), and to include into Israel via the new security fence, those settlement areas which are older and are too large to be destroyed.
After discussing the settlements, Sharon spoke about launching is new "Disengagement Plan" which includes:
1. Redeployment of the IDF along the new security fence, significantly lowering the number of IDF members currently protecting settlements which will have been removed and thus also reducing friction between Palestinians and Israelis.
2. The construction of the Israeli security fence
will continue at an accelerated rate; which, as a result, will allow the IDF to remove roadblocks inside the West Bank and allow the easing of restrictions on everyday Palestinians.
So that is where the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is at this point. It is about time Sharon put some of the pressure back on the Palestinians and force them to decide which path they will trod: to terrorism and thus, misery for their own people or, negotiations and the physical destruction of Hamas. Israel will make the first move, the response (unfortunately) is up to Arafat.