Letters to the Editor

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WAR: Collateral damage acceptable to protect U.S. troops

Letter by Lyle Laws, Puyallup on Aug. 12, 2011 at 4:20 pm with 65 Comments »
August 12, 2011 4:39 pm

We should never go to war unless we are willing to use any and every means at our disposal to defeat the enemy and protect American lives.

No person with a conscience wants innocent civilians to be killed. But now, in this time of political correctness run amok, we are so concerned about collateral damage that we put our brave young men and women in much greater danger.

Did we needlessly sacrifice the lives of the 30 Navy SEALs by sending in an attack helicopter that could be brought down by a shoulder-launched rocket-propelled grenade when we might have been able to take out the Taliban target by using bombs and missiles that could have been could have been launched from a safe altitude?

How much did Islamic jihadists worry about collateral damage when they attacked America on 9/11? I am tired of hearing bleeding hearts saying that we shouldn’t resort to answering our terrorist enemies in kind because that would bring us down to their moral level. What moral level?

If Roosevelt and Truman hadn’t been willing to bomb ball-bearing factories in Germany and aircraft plants in Japan, knowing that thousands of civilians would be killed, we might well be reading history books written in German or Japanese.

As Union general William Tecumseh Sherman said in 1863, ” War is hell.”

Leave a comment Comments → 65
  1. aislander says:

    Sorry PC crowd, but American lives ARE more valuable to me. God can view it the way He wants to, but I care more about those closest to me than those we are fighting…

  2. There’s some debate as to whether a CH-47 Chinook was the appropriate aircraft for the mission. Obviously the landing area was not as secure as thought. When in Nam I never experienced a combat assault with a CH-47. The CH-47 is too vulnerable.

  3. aislander says:

    I heard they used the Chinook because of the high altitude…

  4. Sroldguy says:

    “…But the army found that, in the high altitudes of Afghanistan, the more powerful CH-47 was often the only way to go in the thin mountain air. While doing that, the army found that the CH-47 made an excellent assault helicopter. In many ways, it was superior to the UH-60, mainly because the CH-47 carries more troops and moves faster and farther…”
    http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htairmo/articles/20080305.aspx

    And who would ever think of more noise and flying a barn door near the enemy might be a problem?.

  5. alindasue says:

    Mr. Laws,

    You should have stopped at “We should never go to war…”
    War is never a good solution, and with this multi-front war it’s even less so.

    truthbusterguy’s, “Bring out guys home and let these ragheads just kill each other,” sentiments may be rather harshly worded, but I can’t say I totally disagree with him. The lives of our troops are being needlessly placed in danger so that our government can take sides in other countries’ civil wars. The only possible winners in these fights are defense contractors and warlords… and I’m not so sure about the warlords.

  6. concernedtacoma7 says:

    Lyle, your letter proves you quite ignorant in regards to a counter insurgency. Look at the USSR’s tactics in Afghanistan and how well did that work for them? Find me one example where sheer force defeated an insurgency. Every civilian we kill makes another brother, father, cousin, uncle an enemy of the US.

    I know from extensive first hand experience how challenging and frustrating it can be.

    And enough with the arm-chair generals questioning the tactics used in a war they cannot begin to understand. It was a very tragic loss of life and I am glad this board shows some in America still care. But I can safely say no one on this board has any knowledge of the tactics/equipment used today and criteria for their missions. Reading Tom Clancy does not make you an expert on anything.

    If you are getting this from listening to Savage, while normally he OK, on this issue he is an idiot.

  7. LarryFine says:

    Where’s the pictures and teeth gnashing by the msm operatives ???

    … ok, I’ve been gone week…I just got back and assumed…. stay tuned.

  8. Can someone tell me why we are still there? They don’t want us there, and we have no business being there. We are the invaders, the terrorists, and the murderers in their country. Aislander, I have to respectfully disagree with you. We banged the war drum on 9/11 to justify invasion because our innocents were murdered by Al Qaida- NOT the Taliban. Doesn’t mean that we have the right to go over and keep killing thousands of unarmed men women and children. In case you haven’t heard, Bin Laden is dead. He was taken out by the Navy Seals and he was in Pakistan.

  9. bobcat1a says:

    Why don’t we just carpet nuke the place. Problem solved, right, Lyle?

  10. One mans “collateral damage” is another man’s “murder”

    I’m certain that the Saudis that perpetrated 9/11 were following Bin Laden’s idea of crippling the economy and government of the United States. To them, if 3,000 innocent civilians got in the way….well…that’s just collateral damage.

  11. “Frida says:
    August 12, 2011 at 8:41 pm
    Can someone tell me why we are still there?”

    Two answers, Frida.

    1. Money, money and money (to be made by the war machines)

    2. Once you’ve been there 10 years, it takes a bit of time to safely exit. Remember how long it took to exit Vietnam?

  12. Frida enquires : Can someone tell me why we are still there?”
    Having a son-in-law currently in Afg. and a son previously and again to be deployed there, some points to consider:
    There is a vast amount of unmined lithium along the east central ridgeline.
    There is a collateral heroin-poppy trade (Karzai’s brother,,ahem).
    There is of course the Military-Industrial-Complex.
    There is the never ending but ridiculous incongruity (dream) of an “Islamic
    Democracy”of which, besides Turkey as an honorary member of the EU, there has never been a demonstration that shows anyone other than the original first party ever being elected, without the attendant assassinations ( Hariri-Lebanon).
    And by leaving abruptly (wish it were possible) would leave a vacuum that would be filled by a counterclockwise completion of the so called Arab Spring.
    I do not like our presence there, either.
    Perhaps there can be a Super (unconstitutional) Committee appointed to deal with this issue also…while congress is on its “entitled” vacation…

  13. Mr. Laws should stick to something he knows about (whatever that may be), this isn’t it. If he had bothered to look into the reason the SEALS went in was to help a unit of Rangers who were in trouble, so bombing was not an option. Not to mention this is an insurgency not a straight up war as some have mentioned here already. Why Mr. Laws feels qualified to make such silly statements with certitude is unbelievable.

  14. The casualties in July were horrendous –
    The U.S. Army suffered a record 32 suicides in July, the most since it began releasing monthly figures in 2009.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/checkpoint-washington/post/army-suicides-hit-record-in-july/2011/08/12/gIQAPWaQBJ_blog.html

  15. I’d like someone to give me an honest, accurate, realistic answer as to exactly what we are doing there anyway.

    A total waste with no foreseeable benefit to this country. And it has absolutely NOTHING to do with oil.

    No one can tell me that with the billions being spent in this mess, if we brought our people home, and stopped meddling in foreign entanglements, and got our own economy and manufacturing base back on the plus side, that this country might one day be great again.

    I tend to think I wont see it in my lifetime.

  16. harleyrider1 says:

    Good letter Lyle – long over due to be stated.

    People – stop with the “we’re there for lithium”, “we’re there for the heroin”, we’re there for the …”. You act you alone know why we are really there – and no one cares; that’s not the point of this letter.

    There was a time prior to 1950 when America went to war, America used every weapon in its arsenal. Then the face of America changed and Congress allowed “conflicts” where if the other side only had a stick, we could only use a stick.

    We have spent trillions on weaponry. We are the mightiest nation on earth. Bring all our troops home. WWII is over – scuttle and close the WWII bases in Europe and Japan – there’s a huge, huge savings. Bring all weaponary and troops home from Iraq, Afghanistan – and this President’s Libya. Another huge savings at millions of dollars – per day.

    Stop foreign aid for one year and balance our budget. Every country in the world knows we have over-spent. One year – balance the budget.

    Then going forward, let’s feed, build sanitary water systems, and provide medical for Americans first. If there’s extra money after that in our budget – then help other countries.

    No more “conflicts”. If we have to send military into any Country, we only do it if War is declared. Period. Then we fight it from the air.

    Is it selfish to do this? Do you take care of your family first or do you tell them they can’t eat tonight becasue you gave their food away? I’m sure you don’t.

    We need to return America to its basics and re-build our own infrastructure and help our own people. Don’t vote a political party line. Don’t vote some one for Presidnet becasue your friends are and they seem to know what they are doing. if you are reading this, you can Google. If you are reading this, you can think and now is the time to really question maybe some of our own thoughts that have been molded by TV, magazines, and yes, the Internet. We can do better. Back to the letter – Bring our troops home now.

  17. Why can’t we learn the lesson of Korea and Viet Nam? Or even from observing the USSR in Afghanistan? (there are plenty of other examples)

    Having superior firepower is not enough to put down an insurgency on foreign soil – it usually fails.

    America needs to stop jumping into these military entanglements with the hope that, this time, it will somehow turn out differently.

  18. I am tired of hearing bleeding hearts saying that we shouldn’t resort to answering our terrorist enemies in kind because that would bring us down to their moral level. What moral level?

    A rather insightful (though I think unintentional) comment from Mr. Lyles……America really should face reality when it comes to our record on war-making…..we cannot legitimately claim the moral higher ground.

  19. aislander says:

    The fact that we are putting American soldiers at greater risk to reduce civilian casualties DOES give us the higher moral ground. Mr. Laws questions whether that is a good tradeoff. I agree that, when we go to war, we need to do it quickly, thoroughly, and with minimal loss of American lives. Perhaps that will give populations some cause to reflect on their choice of leaders…

  20. alindasue says:

    aislander said, “I agree that, when we go to war, we need to do it quickly, thoroughly, and with minimal loss of American lives. Perhaps that will give populations some cause to reflect on their choice of leaders…”

    Alternately, we could choose not to go to war and leave the people with the leaders that they chose. Isn’t that the whole point of the “democracy” we are supposedly taking to them?

  21. alindasue says:

    aislander said, “So…what is it like in Pink Pony World, alindasue? War always has to be on the table as a necessary instrument of foreign policy–not as a first choice, but as a last one.”

    The problem is that war is like a loaded gun; you don’t bring it unless you intend to possibly use it. As an “instrument of foreign policy”, it is totally useless. Using the possibility of it as a tool doesn’t encourage trade or even productive discourse. All bringing war to the table does is show a country’s inability to productively do anything else.

    A country fighting to defend itself is one thing, but there are no good foreign policy reasons for starting a war.

    By the way, the ponies in my world are purple, not pink.

  22. taxedenoughintacoma says:

    TBG and alindasue agree on something!!!!!! There is hope for this world.

    TBG, she is right, tone it down a notch.

  23. concernedtacoma7 says:

    ‘we cannot legitimately claim the moral higher ground.’ Yes we can. Our enemy beheads their neighbors and enemies alike. They kill civilians on purpose. They provide no service to the people. Their acts of barbarism are so routine that no one reports on them.

    Have innocents been killed by accident? Sure. Difference is the whole ‘by accident part’.

    Before you pull out some ignorant talking points, Abu Ghraib, while a disgrace, is nothing compared to what our enemies do their own people. It is nothing compared to what has been historically done to POWs in past wars. Look at the treatment by Japan to the US POWs, Vietnam, etc. Some losers acted like frat boys hazing in an isolated incident does not compare to the routine treatment of POWs worldwide and through out history. The worst part of the whole event was how the left over reacted, blowing it out of propotion, and in the end endangering the troops downrange.

  24. Beerboy,

    I am a lot more concerned about the widows and fatherless children of the 30 Navy SEALS than I am about your philosophical moral high ground.

  25. Lyle – who said it was my moral high ground? I was referring to US….you know America.

  26. And besides….not sure how your armchair quarterbacking tactics would have completed the mission of saving the Rangers.

  27. They kill civilians on purpose.

    Don’t really have to go back to Dresden, Hiroshima or Nagasaki to find incidents when the US decided to bomb civilian populations.

    http://www.thedailybell.com/1913/US-Kill-Teams-Target-Afghan-Civilians-as-Trophies.html

  28. aislander says:

    War, like a gun, is a tool, and one must use the right tool for the right job. You’re quite right, alindasue, war would be the wrong tool in most circumstances. How would you have solved the problem of Hitler without it?

  29. Lars – re why we are there – great post – I agree with every one of your points.

    The two biggest mistakes were to occupy the country and try to rebuild it as a democracy.

    Alindasue and Islander,
    All nations have three rights:
    The right to exist free of forgiven occupation or domination.
    The right to their own religion and culture.
    The right to their own form of government.

    A just war is one fought in self-defense or to rescuer another nation from an aggressor, and embraces the principles of how the war may be conducted including no gratuitous violence, assassinations, or war against civilians.

    Until Hitler invaded Poland he was an internal German problem.

  30. aislander says:

    So…xring…wouldn’t it have been better to stop Hitler BEFORE he broke out and caused millions of deaths? And didn’t Czechoslovakia count?

  31. ” As Union general William Tecumseh Sherman said in 1863, ” War is hell.”
    And Brigadier General medal of honor winner Smedley D. Butler said” war is a racket.”
    Lets declare victory, pull out now, bring our troops home. These wars are un winnable, weve waged these wars of choice for so many years now, yet the average citizen could care less as they have no direct stake in them. The draft is gone. We’ve killed so many of our own young, impared the minds of so many more, wasted over a trillion dollars. How much progress has been made in all of this time? Zero progress is the honest answer.

  32. To those who answered my question as to why we are still there? I get it now, we are making up the destruction as we go along. And Aislander? Hitler was Germany’s problem – as tragic as it was in Germany before he invaded surrounding countries- the right time to squash him would be once he left his borders and not before. To do so before would create a martyr and an escalation.

  33. Bb misproportions history with –
    “Don’t really have to go back to Dresden, Hiroshima or Nagasaki to find incidents when the US decided to bomb civilian populations”

    The ever-red state collage (not college) fails history if not teaching that Dresden was where the main ball bearing factory was located. Bb would have us drop “Please cease and desist” orders over central Germany? sheeze…
    Hiro. and Naga. were given much advanced warning via communique from our Dept. of War to the Imperial Japanese government, WHERE have you been???
    The blood of Fat Boy and Little Man is expressly on the hands of the Shinto regime. Talk to ANYONE over 70. sheeze…

    Harleyrider…If you are referring to my post…I said here are some “points to consider”..I did not claim the entire library of reasons why we are “There” .
    This was meant as a direct response to Frida, who asked a very logical question.
    X-ring makes a very good point.
    The Russians..The British, the pre-Romani Indians and Alexander the Great learned (some sooner than others) that one cannot legislate coerced cooperation unless one has sustainable overwhelming force. The Romans of the 4th-5th century A.D. learned the hard way too.
    Refer to George Washington’s’ Farewell Address warning of “foreign entanglements”

  34. aislander says:

    Frida writes: “the right time to squash [Hitler] would be once he left his borders and not before.To do so before would create a martyr and an escalation.”

    That’s satire, right? You cannot be making a serious point. You DO know that, had Churchill’s counsel been heeded, tens of millions of lives could have been saved; that Germany was vulnerable and easily beatable by the French and British; that Hitler violated the treaty of Versailles and incursion into Germany was perfectly justifiable? “Create an escalation!” What could have been an escalation beyond World War II? And your vote cancels out mine…

  35. Islander,
    Hitler took both the Sudetenland from Czechoslovakia and all of Austria by political maneuvering.

    Lars,
    The tragic irony of the firebombing raid on Dresden was that during the war the city had never been a site of war-production or major industry.

    http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/firebombing-of-dresden

    On July 27, 1945, The Potsdam Declaration requested Japan to surrender unconditionally.
    The Japanese Civilian Government and Military Command chose to ignore the request, and the bombs were dropped on August 6 & 9, 1945. The Civilian

    Government and Military Command decided to continue to fight but the Emperor Showa ordered that the country surrender unconditionally on 14 August.

  36. oh larsman…..you really don’t deal with facts do you?

    The Bombing of Dresden was a military bombing by the British Royal Air Force (RAF) and the United States Army Air Force (USAAF) and as part of the allied forces between 13 February and 15 February 1945 in the Second World War. In four raids, altogether 3,600 planes, of which 1,300 were heavy bombers, dropped as many as 650,000 incendiaries, together with 8,000 lb. high-explosive bombs and hundreds of 4,000-pounders.[1] In all more than 3,900 tons of high-explosive bombs and incendiary devices were dropped on the city, the Baroque capital of the German state of Saxony. The resulting firestorm destroyed 15 square miles (39 square kilometres) of the city centre.[2]

    A 1953 United States Air Force report written by Joseph W. Angell defended the operation as the justified bombing of a military and industrial target, which was a major rail transportation and communication centre, housing 110 factories and 50,000 workers in support of the Nazi war effort.[3] However, several researchers have discovered that not all of the communications infrastructure, such as the bridges, were in fact targeted, nor were the extensive industrial areas outside the city centre.[4] It is argued that Dresden was a cultural landmark of little or no military significance, a “Florence on the Elbe” (Elbflorenz), as it was known, and the attacks were indiscriminate area bombing and not proportionate to the commensurate military gains.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Dresden_in_World_War_II

  37. stradivari says:

    It has been obvious from the start that the Bush administration started two expensive wars for no noble aor justifiable cause. The terrible toll on humanity and treasure was and is unnecessary. Waving the American flag and comparing today’s militarism with FDR’s movements favorably against Hitler’s war machine is just plain wrong.

  38. LarryFine says:

    ‘The paranoid sect of the looney left’ has circled the wagons and – just like Stalin’s purges – keeps seeing enemies where friends could be.’

    ;)

  39. championrd says:

    War is hell, but that partially because that’s where some men lose their souls and Lyle Laws has certainly lost his humanity.

    First, it is silly to criticize the political correctness of those on the other side when you use the politically sanitized term “collateral damage” to refer to the death of civilians.

    Second, the author conflates innocent civilians living in Afghanistan and Pakistan with the “Islamic jihadists . . . (that) attacked America on 9/11.” Those intimately involved in the attack on 9/11 were almost all Saudis – thus nominally allies – who have since been almost entirely killed or captured, including Osama bin Laden.

    Third, its silly for some to compare citizens in Afghanistan and Pakistan who are farmers and shopkeepers with citizens in Germany working in arms manufacturing in WWII. The Taliban isn’t shooting down US helicopters with apricots or pomegranates. In fact, their weapons aren’t even being manufactured in the Middle East, but the US, our Western allies or, at least, our friendly trading partners Russia or China, including the Chinese HN-5 anti-aircraft missiles. http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/TopStories/20070912/weapons_china_070912/

    I recommend people watch this Dylan Ratigan rant on the issue: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LjkQULrGeqI

  40. obamanothanks says:

    Anybody remember this song by Chicago? It’s more true now than ever !

    America needs you
    Harry Truman
    Harry could you please come home
    Things are looking bad
    I know you would be mad
    To see what kind of men
    Prevail upon the land you love
    America’s wondering
    How we got here
    Harry all we get is lies
    We’re gettin’ safer cars
    Rocket ships to mars
    From men who’d sell us out
    To get themselves a piece of power
    We’d love to hear you speak your mind
    In plain and simple ways
    Call a spade a spade
    Like you did back in the day
    You would play piano
    Each morning walk a mile
    Speak of what was going down
    With honesty and style
    America’s calling
    Harry Truman
    Harry you know what to do
    The world is turnin’ round and losin’ lots of ground
    Oh Harry is there something we can do to save the land we love
    Oh woah woah woah
    America’s calling
    Harry Truman
    Harry you know what to do
    The world is turnin’ round
    And losin’ lots of ground
    So Harry is there something we can do to save the land we love
    Oh
    Harry is there something we can do to save the land we love
    Harry
    Harry is there something we can do to save the land we love

  41. Pecksbadboy says:

    War, what war?

    Who is it declared upon?
    Who will surrender?
    What will the reparations be and from who?
    Why are we dying and for what?

    Please answer them and give us a need for killing innocent people.

  42. crusader says:

    Do we get to win this time?

    Rambo had it right all along.

  43. championrd,

    Reasonable people can disagree as to whether we should have become involved in a ground war in Afghanistan, but since the decision was made, we are betraying our troops if we don’t do everything in our power to protect them.

  44. Rambo had it right all along.

    …..that was a movie……

  45. ItalianSpring says:

    Right on Lyle.

  46. alindasue says:

    lylelaws said, “…but since the decision was made, we are betraying our troops if we don’t do everything in our power to protect them.”

    The best thing we can do to protect them would be to bring them home.

    We are “betraying” our troops by sending them on repeated tours in a war zone that is not really ours to be fighting in. Reading about soldiers who die during their third or fourth tour over there does more than make me cry. It makes me angry that they were send over there again to begin with.

  47. I see Larry has been reading his archives…..

  48. LarryFine says:

    I see bB is having flashbacks…

  49. concernedtacoma7 says:

    It is nice to see the left arguing against the intervention in libya.

    As much as the overwhelming majority would like war is not option for global superpowers. Since the dawn of governments the most powerful were consistently under attack. While geographically blessed with 2 large oceans for borders, our interests are very global. We cannot turn a blind eye to events that effect the US, even if they are thousands of miles away.

    “it is the Soldier who prays the most for peace because it is he that bares the scars and burdens of war”. From memory, think I got it right.

  50. who knew that deja vu had a name and it is Fine by me.

  51. It’s nice to see that ct7 is acknowledging that our military isn’t for Defense but for maintaining the empire……

    Oh wait….you didn’t say that? But then, “the left” didn’t say what you claim……

  52. scott0962 says:

    The author’s implication that Afghan civiilans deserve no consideration is wrong. Unlike WWII where we were engaged in a war with nation states and civilians were part of those nation’s war making machine (just as ours were) the people in Afghanistan are caught in a conflict between their elected government and it’s allies (that’s us) and insurgents. The people in these disputed areas often support whoever is pointing a gun at them at the moment and who can blame them? Their situation is a far cry from that of a civilian working in a munitions plant while his or her country is at war.

    The risk of collateral damage may sometimes be necessary in purely military terms but we should never let ourselves forget that those are real people too, it’s bad enough we kill or injure them, we shouldn’t be so quick to callously dismiss their deaths as somehow “deserved” because that’s exactly what Al Qaeda does. I’m afraid the letter writer just doesn’t understand that.

  53. tomwa007 says:

    aislander says:
    ” Sorry PC crowd, but American lives ARE more valuable to me. ”

    Are you saying that your God is better than any other God is? That is a stupid arrogant argument that brainwashed since birth or uneducated has used for 5000 years.

    You might as well say that people of any faith other than yours are stupid and ignorant and you as a supreme being will rate them as you see fit.

    Which religions practiced in the USA are right or wrong in your eyes?

  54. tomwa – the issue isn’t which faith is correct but how can anyone claim that the US mission in Afghanistan is to protect US citizens.

  55. Continuing on that thought…

    There are many examples of US generals making decisions that they knew would result in the loss of many US servicemen’s lives yet they decided that the sacrifice was worth it if the mission was furthered. What is the American mission in Afghanistan? And how many US lives is that mission worth?

  56. slugoxyz says:

    Ho hum. People who say “it would be better to simply not go to war” clearly take our freedoms for granted. They must live in this weird little bubble where they read about this political system or that one and they believe they know what sounds best from this academic perspective. Having served for 22 years, I can tell you that no one hates war more than a soldier. The difference between brave service members and you though, is that they realize that there are indeed times when you need to fight. Jesus turned the other cheek and I respect the notion. It just doesn’t work for a nation in these times. As long as we’re being ignorant, I will testify that I wish everyone just loved each other. Unfortunately, the way things are, if you slap me on the cheek, I’m going to defend myself with considerably more force than you attacked me with. That’s just the way I roll. In these times, if you turn the other cheek, they’re going to hit you again…and again etc.

    So, it isn’t about Lithium or empire maintenance. This war (both fronts) are ultimately about bringing the fight to the enemy. The enemy isn’t like the days of WWII or earlier wars where nations squared off and you could often tell whether a person was your enemy by their accent or their appearance. Our brave men and women stick their hand in a hornet’s nest each and every day so that the hornets sting them and don’t come here to our homes. You can say that some politician made the Muslim world hate us. That is ridiculous and exercising the same ignorance you accuse others of. Muslims hate you because of what you have. They hate you for the freedoms you exercise. They hate you for your sense of equality. They hate you because their clerics are bullies and hating you keeps them in power. If we did not stand with our great flag in their backyard, they would conspire to kill us here. Why? Because you are a threat to them. You are a threat to how they suppress women, how they suppress freedom. Your media is a threat to how they keep their people reverent by force. Our soldiers are a lightning rod to radical fundamentalism. Many of the insurgents we kill on a daily basis don’t come from Iraq or Afghanistan. They travel from their countries to strike at America in the Middle East or SW Asia. The minute we stop creating a presence, is the moment they begin to conspire about attacking us here in America.

    So, before you dismiss all war as illogical or accuse our leaders of supporting the military industrial machine (I’m sure that is a perk), think about your enemy. Maybe you don’t feel you have an enemy. Good for you. The problem is that you hiding your head in the sand doesn’t make that Muslim Jihadist any less likely to kill you the minute you let your guard down. So, by all means, promote peace but do it with a metaphorical gun in your hand. Having fought these people, I can tell you that they only recognize force of violence. They do not respect your attempt at peaceful isolationism because your culture (that insults them so much) extends to their lands, to their laptops, to their radios etc. You have to convince them that you are too hard a target and to seek victims elsewhere. Even that might not help. They often want to die so presenting a hard target only attracts them to martyrdom. Either way, you have to protect yourself and taking the fight to them is the single best way of keeping your innocent citizens safe. I don’t hate all Muslims. I have read the Quran and I believe it to be a religion of peace. I don’t think they are all my enemy. Just the ones that want to kill me. If you are Muslim and you simply want to live your life the best you can, then I am your fan. If you hate me because I love freedom. Then you are my enemy and I will do my very best to strike at you before you strike at me. It is sad but I just can’t afford to wait until you fly an airline into one of our buildings.

  57. IMO the melt sand and let God sort them crowd is taking their agenda from the God’s direction to Joshua at the Battle of Jericho. Except how can you carpet nuke them and spare the young virgins as God directs.

  58. BlaineCGarver says:

    My Reader’s Digest version is that if we engage in War, we should win it by any means necessary. Period. Let the World Court judge us, especially the next time we rescue some population or other from a Tyrant who enjoys paper-shredding his people….. I’m sick of bowing to world opinion, and would like to see the USA take care of Number One for a change. The hampster mascot of the Seal Team is worth more than every Rag Terrorist out there.

  59. Tomwa007

    First let me say your comment has nothing to do with the letter posted.
    Next, let me answer your questions.
    “Are you saying your God is better than any other God is?” Yes.
    This is the reason I practice my religion. If it were not so, I would be practicing another or none at all.
    “ That is a stupid arrogant argument that brainwashed since birth or uneducated has used for 5000 years.”
    Yet you put yourself forth as the supreme arbiter of religious truth. Are you including yourself in your condemnation?
    Next we have an extreme case of arrogantly false supposition. “ You might as well say……..”.
    “Which religions practiced in the USA are right or wrong in your eyes?”
    Right…..mine
    Wrong……all others
    Reason…..see above.
    My view on religion…. Let each practice as THEY see fit.

    God bless
    Or would you prefer Gods bless?
    PS I believe the time to be in Afghanistan is over.

  60. slugoxyz says:

    micklw: Thankfully, your intolerant and somewhat narrow view is not as pervasive as you would like. Do you know what the state religion is in America? We don’t have one. Do you care to take a stab at why? And the answer is not that we would all turn to you for the answer. It is because America is made up of a weird collection of everywhere. So, your religion (while probably being the same as mine) is not the best one. It’s just yours. As the character in The Devil Wears Prada says…”That’s all”.

    Your weird little narrow argument is actually a little funny (if you weren’t serious) so I thank you…I think. I got one of those weird little chuckles that you get when you aren’t sure if the crazy freak is kidding or not. You assume they’re kidding until the expression on their face tells you otherwise.

    In truth, you are practicing this religion because it’s what you’ve always known. Perhaps it is because you are not intellectual enough to explore other possibilities. At least I practice my religion based on my education, my exploration of other religions, my deep and profound thought on the matter and ultimately, my decision that mine is as good as any other at getting to the other side. All religions become a bit mythological when we dig our heels in and start claiming ours is better than anyone else’s and the written word is exactly as it is written. Faith becomes an ignorant hammer when you profess that everyone else is wrong (when you can’t exactly prove you are right). So, in this particular case, Lincoln is correct. “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool then to speak out and remove all doubt” (words to that effect).

  61. slugoxyz says:

    And tomwa007, don’t think that my last post somehow supports your posting. You’re as silly as anyone else. You said that “That is a stupid arrogant argument that brainwashed since birth or uneducated has used for 5000 years” I can barely make sense of it grammatically and how educated was mankind in the year 3000BC (roughly)? The 30th century BC saw early agriculture, the beginnings of Stonehenge, Jomon Period in Japan and the beginning of the early Dynastic Period in Mesopotamia. So, you just made that number up right? Oh good. You’re just who I want on my side to argue why we should all be tolerant and logical in our search for religious truth. You are just jerking your knee to say that the Christian Right is wrong but you’re using Eddie Izzard intellect to do it. “You’re wrong ‘cause you are” and “It is ‘cause it is!” Can we have just a sliver of logic in your statement please?”

  62. aislander says:

    Sorry, tomwa; my comment wasn’t about faith, it was about what matters to me. But, as long as you brought up the subject: Why bother to HAVE a faith unless you believe it is THE faith?

  63. Slugoxyz

    Intolerant? Perhaps you should re-read my “View of religion”.
    You cite your vast “deep and profound thought, education etc.” Did you not notice
    the deep and fundamental differences between some religions? What in my comment led
    you to believe that my choice was NOT well thought out? Make believe arguments with made up condescending superiority overtones really are not adult conversation. I do not have to prove to you that my religion is the right one. I only have to come to the conclusion that it is the right one for me.
    “In truth, you are practicing this religion because it’s what you’ve always known”. Another childish supposition neither based in fact and certainly not founded on some assumed intelligence.

    Let’s take an example: Religion #1 believes Jesus is God. Religion #2 believes Jesus is NOT God.
    Can you believe both? How? Are they both valid? Only to the person holding to one or the other.
    Are they equally valid? No, not to the person holding the opposing view. Does each person have the right to
    believe their view is the truth? I believe they do, why don’t you?

    You cite a character in a movie as saying “That’s all”. How about an appropriate one for you?
    Yosemite Sam…… “Carnsarn idiget”. Sorry, just trying to keep it at the level of your comment.

  64. slugoxyz says:

    Ahhh Mick. I suppose “well thought out” may be in dispute here. Your “well thought out” might not be as “well thought out” as say…mine. You want adult conversation but you say “which religions practiced in the USA are right or wrong in your eyes – Right – mine, Wrong – all others etc.” And you say that my blog was not adult conversation? The basis of your argument is that since you practice your religion, it is right (or else why would you practice it)? Really? You find that logical? So, I like the Yankees which makes them the best team simply because I like them? Kind of the same thing Mick. Based on your theory, if I believed that this person was inferior to that person based on skin color, it would be “my truth”. Yet does it make it “the truth”. I think not.

    Does each person have the right to believe their view is the truth? Uhh Mick, the truth is the truth whether you believe in it or not. If you want to discuss the philosophy of absolute truth, I’ll fetch but I don’t think you do. I am a big fan of scientific proof (the sun will rise tomorrow, I am almost positive). But when you start talking religion… Truth? Hmm. That’s a tough one. You seem to think that your view of religion is correct and therefore, that is your personal truth. Nice. Therefore, my favorite team is the Yankees so they are the best team? If I twist my brain to think like you, that’s where I go. No wait? I don’t think I like it here in Mick’s world. It’s just dumb and illogical.

    You have yet to achieve the level of my comment. And I just can’t bear to argue where you set the bar. I can step over your bar Mick. It’s not very high.

  65. Slugoyz

    As I said in my previous comment “right for me”. Now let us look at your convoluted logic. You say
    “since you practice your religion, it is right(or else why would you practice it?” “Really, you find that logical?” Yes I do. I do not think that it would be logical for one to practice a religion if they
    did not think it was the truth. Explain why you do. Perhaps it makes a difference if your faith is only
    carried on your sleeve instead of in your heart.
    “Your well thought out may not be as well thought out as mine”. A little egotistical conjecture here?
    Your references to race, a subject not even remotely connected to the discussion, is only
    a cry of desperation for an argument point. Less than honorable in light of the discussion.

    As far as the reference to the Yankees being the best because you think they are.
    Another desperate stab in the air. If they win the world series in a given year, they were clearly the best
    at that point in time. If they didn’t, well, you have a difficult argument on your hands. Have they been the best over many years? If so, you may have a good argument, it is all relevant to how the question is posed.
    No bearing on the present question.

    I am sorry you don’t agree that the religion I follow, and believe to be the truth, for me, is an unquestionable
    area of personal choice, as long as it hurts no other, just as your choice of religion is for you.

    I answered most of your points and questions. Quite unlike you with mine.

    “I don’t think I like it here in Mick’s world. It’s just dumb and illogical”

    When the debate is over, slander becomes the tool of the loser.

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