I'm posting some comments I left over at Fred Butler's fine blog:
"Punishing residents of Gaza..."
And how did that come about? Maybe because Israel returned Gaza to the Muslims, only to be rewarded by having the Gazan Muslims use that as a base of operations to attack Israel.
Oh, and let's not forget that "humanitarian aid" is a perfect cover to smuggle in contraband weapons.
Here's a question for Jon: Why should Israel treat Muslims better than Muslims treat Muslims?
Muslims recruit young men and women to be suicide bombers. Muslims practice female genital mutilation. Muslims practice honor-killings (and gang rape). Muslim regimes practice torture. They torture their own citizens. Muslims practice child marriage and pederasty. What rights do Muslims have under sharia law?
Why should Israel be held to a higher standard in the treatment of Muslims than the way Muslims treat fellow Muslims?
Well, what about the Rachel Corrie affair?
"In 1981 Israel bombed a nuclear reactor in Iraq. American physicists examined the site and determined that it was not for the purpose of developing nuclear weapons."
Did you ever bother to ask yourself why a major oil-producing state like Iraq needed nuclear energy? Couldn't be the reactor has an ulterior purpose. Nah.
i) You seem to be using the dumb blond defense for Corrie. That she just didn't know what was going on. Maybe so, but that's a sexist assumption on your part.
ii) Perhaps she was just another dupe for the terrorists.
iii) In any event, she died in an accident.
iv) As far as white phosphorus is concerned, I don't think it much matters how you die. Whether you die from a falling tree, a 45 slug, or the H-bomb, dead is dead.
The morally relevant question is the provocation. Israel returned Gaza to the Muslims. The Muslims responded by turning Gaza into a base of operations from which to launch unprovoked attacks on Israel.
Israel is merely defending herself. And because Israel is such a geographically small country, she has very little margin for error.
Children of terrorists die when their terrorist parents use civilian population centers as a military base of operations. The terrorists are to blame for putting their kids in harms way.
"Or trying to proliferate nuclear weapons?"
There's nothing inherently wrong with nuclear proliferation. That's only a problem if nuclear weapons fall into the wrong hands.
“Iraq produces oil but I don't think they refine it.”
Even if they don’t, so what? They could build a refinery. Or partner with an oil company.
“Regardless Richard Wilson, chair of the physics department at Harvard, inspected the site and reported it was unsuitable for plutonium production.”
Even if that’s true, that’s after the fact. Better safe than sorry.
“How so? Corrie probably knew they had tunnels. Israel knew it. You and I know it. Does this make us terrorists?”
Now you’re playing dumb. It’s not just that she knew it. She was abetting the terrorists.
“They smuggle cars through the tunnels. It's not a big secret and doesn't make you a terrorist just because you know about it. You block people from getting basic food, like pasta, so they dig, and this makes them terrorists?”
I understand why you sympathize with Corrie. One dupe is sympathetic to another. The notion that tunnels were only used for pasta and not for weapons is symptomatic of your incurable credulity.
BTW, if you stand in front of a bulldozer, you take a risk. If I jaywalk across a freeway, and I’m run over, who’s to blame?
“As far as the attacks, they attack far less than Israel. They are getting bombed and shot routinely.”
Yes, even though the Gazans are basically Amish, Israel attacks them for the fun of it.
“The US reacted after 9-11 to the tune of at least hundreds of thousands dead.”
But I thought you just assured us that Saddam really did have a WMD program. So I guess you agree with Bush and Cheney.
“Our suffering is far less than what Gazans have endured, not to mention Lebanon.”
Couldn’t be that Lebanon is a staging ground for Syria and Hezbollah.
“Sure, some Muslims do some awful things.”
Yes, just “some.” A few isolated incidents. Anomalous, really.
“Here's the difference between me and Fred. I can condemn them.”
You condemn them with a token throwaway line.
“And on top of that I think the first crimes you should consider are the ones you are responsible for. If my child is a bully it doesn't suffice for me to reply and say ‘But the neighbor kid is even worse.’ I am not responsible for the neighbor kid. My first concern should be dealing with behavior that I have some ability to control.”
"That doesn't even make sense. Hezbollah was formed in response to the Israeli invasion that killed 17,000 civilians without provocation. The very existence of Hezbollah is a function of Israeli violence."
Walid Phares, himself an Lebanese émigré, doesn't share your narrative:
"The bombing prompted the nuclear program, Steve. The bombing run was the CAUSE of the progress of Saddam's nuclear program."
"But I didn't say the tunnels aren't used for weapons. Why shouldn't Palestinians have weapons? Israel has an illegal embargo on them that prevents them from getting food. Israel won't allow them to fish in their own territorial waters, driving starving fishermen back with gunboats. Israel destroys their means of making food, crushing chicken coups, plowing their orchards, blocking their water supplies. They are trying to get weapons and they should be. People under siege have a right to resist violently."
That's your spin. Here's a very different explanation: