Where Right and Left Collide: A Zeek Debate, p.3

between Jay Michaelson and Evan Sayet
Moderated by Dan Friedman

4. War on Terror

DF: It seems a commonplace that Democrats haven't got the will to be strong on terror, what could the Democrats do that could be more secure than the Patriot Acts and the Dept of Homeland Security?

JM: First, we have to fight our real enemies. There are people plotting to kill us, but instead of capturing Osama Bin Laden -- remember him? -- we went after Iraq, which had no connection to 9/11 and which posed no threat to us whatsoever. Now, Iraq is a breeding ground for terrorists. Is that progress? Meanwhile, Bush's pals in Saudi Arabia spread a vicious, America-hating distortion of Islam, and coddle terrorists. Why aren't we doing anything about that? Maybe because the Bush family itself is so closely related to the House of Saud. And our inaction on Iran and North Korea has made two new, unstable nuclear powers on this president's watch. Ask yourself: are you safer now than you were four years ago?

Second, we have to fight smarter. There are evil people in the world, with sophisticated infrastructure and deep roots. But the Bush administration's response has been like that of a 13-year-old bully in the schoolyard: hit and hit hard. That makes us feel good for a little while, but for every one terrorist we kill, we make ten more. Instead, what if we worked with our supposed allies in the Middle East, countries like Saudi Arabia and Egypt, to actually uproot the terrorists where they live, and to remove the root causes of terrorism? This doesn't mean being less tough; no one wants to uproot, kill, and destroy the terrorists more than I do. It means thinking with our brains instead of just with our guts. This president has neither the capacity nor the interest in reasoned debate, and his policies show it.

Third, I dispute the premise of your question. This administration has done an abominable job at homeland security. The Department of Homeland Security hasn't been given a chance, or a budget, to do the job it has to do; we're busy taking our shoes off at airports, but the INS, FBI, and CIA still don't talk with each other enough to keep terrorists off our shores. But the Bush folks choose to bestow a huge tax break on the wealthiest 1% of Americans, during a time of war, right when we need this money most for a strong defense.

As for the president, he has waffled, flip-flopped, hedged - he's done everything but lead. President Bush opposed the creation of the 9/11 commission, but then when the public supported it overwhelmingly, he supported it. He stonewalled them and refused to testify, but then when the outcry was too strong, he agreed to testify -- as long as no cameras were allowed, no notes could be taken, and Vice President Cheney was there to hold his hand. This is not the time to starve our government of resources, or waffle and flip-flop on these important issues. There has been a complete leadership vacuum on homeland security, and as a result, we are less safe now than we were on September 10, 2001.

ES: It's not so much that they haven't got the will it's that they simply do not wish to judge things as "good" and "evil" (or even better and worse). This leads the Democrat to INVARIABLY side with evil over good and wrong over right. Consider the following example:

It is standard practice at the leftist media outlets to never call Hamas, Islamic Jihad or Al Qaeda "terrorists." Their argument is that "one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter" (an argument hammered home by the Democratic Party's official propagandist Michael Moore who calls the terrorists in Iraq who blow up school children "the same as our Minute Men.").

This is important because it goes to the heart of Liberal "thinking." Truth isn't defined by facts and evidence but rather by "feelings." Since the terrorists "feel" that they are freedom fighters they are no different than our Founding Fathers.

Since the people who blow the skulls off of twelve year old children are no different than our own Founding Fathers then why do we love, say, George Washington but abhor, say, Yasser Arafat? The answer, to the leftist, is that Americans are evil, racist, xenophobes who only hate the Palestinians' "founding fathers" because of our own hate. When the time comes to actually fight the terrorists, then, the leftist finds himself protecting the "innocent victim" of America's horrible "racism."

It is no surprise, then, to see leftists running to the West Bank to act as "human shields" to protect the life of the vicious, corrupt, mass-murdering dictator while it is common practice from everyone from Noam Chomsky to the United Nations to condemn the democracy of Israel.

Again, Modern Liberals will ALWAYS side with evil over good, wrong over right, worse over better and failure over success because, having removed judgment from their social and political calculus the leftist has no explanation as to why things succeed and fail or why something is thought evil and other things thought good. The ONLY answer to them is that success has cheated / failure has been cheated, and good and evil are conclusions come to through the arrogance of believing in something bigger than personal opinion.

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October 2004

Empowering Jewish Progressives
Leah Koenig

Deconstructing Zell Miller (and Reconstructing Kerry)
Jay Michaelson

A Demonstration in Words
Hila Ratzabi

Where Left and Right Collide
a debate
moderated by
Dan Friedman

Art at War
Bara Sapir

Jews and Bush
An Online Resource Guide

Belly of the Beast
Cullen Goldblatt

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From previous issues:

Eminem & Class Rage
Dan Friedman

Radical Evil
Michael Shurkin

They Gonna Crucify Me
Ken Applebaum