Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Cal Thomas is a Loon

Shortly after 9/11, former Moral Majority poohbah Cal Thomas wrote a column defending the use of nuclear weapons in Afghanistan:

President Bush should consider emulating his predecessor, Harry Truman, and employ the use of at least tactical nuclear weapons against the Taliban should it be concluded that such a weapon might produce better results than the current bombing campaign. If this is war, why pull any punches?

Perhaps nothing short of nuclear weapons will deter for another generation the enemies of freedom. Like the fanatical Japanese of Truman’s day, the fanatical Taliban will not be dissuaded from murdering as many Americans as they can. This is not a time for diplomatic or political niceties. It is a time to wipe them out before they wipe any more of us out.

That’s the kind of fanaticism the United States faces in Afghanistan and in countries like Iraq. If we show them that our sword is bigger than theirs and, more importantly, that we will not shrink from using it to defend our people and our values, the likelihood we will have to do so again in the near future will be diminished.

Thomas, a syndicated columnist and Fox News contributor, has consistently flakked for the administration's interventionist hoohah. In a recent column entitled "Bush and Blair Get It," Thomas again chides war critics.

So what do Bush and Blair "get" that the rest of us don't? Well, says Thomas, "it is clear the terrorists intend to take their war inside Britain and the United States, as they did on 9/11 and in the train bombings in London and Madrid. There can be no conscientious objecting to this war if we want to remain free."

In response to Thomas, David Henderson asks, "Why are they the targets? Why doesn't Thomas mention Switzerland, Sweden, Holland, or any of the other countries in Europe in his list of targets? Why doesn't he mention Canada? Presumably, he doesn't think that people in these countries would also be victims of terrorists. But what distinguishes these countries from Britain and the United States?"

Henderson answers his own question:

There is one main difference: the U.S. and British governments have intervened in the affairs of Iraq and other countries in the Middle East, while the governments of Switzerland, Sweden, Holland, and Canada have not. So the lesson seems to be not that the U.S. and British governments should continue intervening, but that it should imitate these other governments and refrain from intervening. If you complained to me that you had been stung by hornets, and I wanted to help you avoid such bad consequences in the future, the first thing I would ask is whether you had stuck your hand in a hornets' nest. If you told me you had, I would suggest that you quit sticking your hand in hornets' nests.

Indeed, let us stop looking for monsters to destroy.


Anonymous mskee said...

Here's what I don't get.....how can anyone consider the use of nukes short of a clear and present danger of immense proportions? Considering the consequences in terms of deadly radiation pollution, I don't see a realistic way to contain it.

As to interference, I do believe there's reason to think that our "interference" has been going on a lot longer than Iraq. It seems every tinhorn dictator in the Middle East was at one time installed, supported and propped up by the US.

4:32 PM  
Blogger Lawrence said...

Aside from the fact that using nuclear weapons to "wipe them out" would require complete genocide to even touch on being effective, and even then it would create more opposition from other corners.

There would always be a new "threat" that needed wiping out. An amoral and monstrous path of action to be sure, but then again, crisis and creative use of new "threats" has ever been the stock and trade of the tyrant.

Nukes in the Middle East will have little effect on the terrorists freely walking over our Southern Border, except to embolden them further. I spend time frequently on the border in Texas and it is common knowledge that terrorists are active in Mexico. An operative's capture in McAllen made the national news, but there is much going on there that never does.

Worrying about the Taliban, Iran, Syria or whoever the bogeyman of the day is a waste of time if you let the unidentified human flood cross freely to the south. When (and it will be when) not if, the next attack occurs it will not come from jets or ICBM's from the Middle East, it will probably have walked across our Southern border while those in Washington, whose job it is to protect us, were playing global conquerers in the Middle East.

By their own actions, be they Republican or Democrat, our rulers show that they have no real concern for our security or safety, only for new excuses to increase state power at our expense.

5:11 PM  
Blogger Kerwin said...

China and The Western Nations mess with other countries on a constant basis. Some have used military means and others use "diplomatic" or covert espionage. That is what International community means. I believe we are just doing their dirty work in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Talk of Nukes sounds foolish to me. It is probably not serious. I do have some fear with Bush because he comes off as overzealous on the issue of terrorism.

The President has a tough nut to crack with Iran, but I think he will stick with his Iraq plan while trying to stall for time in order to get it to work.

2:17 PM  
Blogger Darrell said...


I hope that the casual and foolish talk about using nukes is mere rhetoric, but it really amounts to something like nuclear blackmail, which is what we're allegedly afraid of if Iran, or whomever, gets access to the bomb.

Mark, you are correct about our intervention in the Middle East, which has been ongoing since at least the 1950's. Why are we hated? In part because we're knocking over other folks sand castles in their backyards.

Lawrence, as you know, I share your concern about the security implications of our current immigration policy, or lack thereof. An increasing number of Middle Easterners are being detained at the border, which makes one wonder how many are sailing through.

7:27 AM  

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