Tuesday, April 29, 2003

No One Showed up to “Greet the Press,” Big Surprise
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: May 1, 2003

Last Wednesday no one attended CSUN’s “Greet the Press” event except the guy who organized it (Dallas Fueston) and several other people. This paper has said that Mr. Fueston couldn’t understand why so few people turned out, despite heavy promotion of the event through flyers. Here’s a hint, if everyone wanted to sleep they could have just as easily gone home or stayed in their dorm.

Seriously though, I saw the flyers all over the place, but at no point did I ever come into contact with anything justifying the taking of my time to go to see it. It wasn’t made clear to me why I would be any better off going to “Greet the Press” event than just staying home and watching television, or writing those pesky term papers that are due. In fact the only real reason I can see for going to the event would be to have this silly charge, of the campus being “apathetic,” not leveled again.

As far as I can tell the students who attend this college have better things to do than to come and listen to journalists explain their craft, which I’m assuming you could hear in a journalism class if it interested you that much. All you have to do to tell that the people on campus care about politics and world around them is to ask them, any student here seems perfectly willing and able to forward their opinions on almost any conceivable topic.

To tell that perhaps there was a poor job done in marketing this event, or selecting it in the first place, one needs to recognize the fact that there are a great number of older students who go to UNLV, and the older one gets the more non-apathetic one usually becomes. Yet none of these older students, save for one senior citizen, showed up at this event. Even the people who are more likely to care didn’t care to “Greet the Press,” and to blame the students at large for this, saying that they are “apathetic” is to just keep up this cycle of stupid events that no one attends.

Perhaps if CSUN attempted to host debates on hot-button topics, that the students are arguing about all the time, between faculty or students, or bringing in academics for the specific purpose of arguing, then attendance would go up. Or if in marketing these things to students CSUN appealed to the self-interest of the students, making it clear why any given event is important to them, or providing vittles, given that it is our money they are spending anyway. It isn’t free pizza if we students are bankrolling CSUN.

Also, let’s be realistic, we’re not going to get a Berkeley-type (in terms of activism) campus in Las Vegas. There is already tons of stuff here for people who are just becoming adults to do, and campus events have to compete with these other activities for a person’s time. Also, a great number of those who attend class live on the other side of town and work as well and cannot be expected to show up at all campus events.

This is the reality of the situation on campus and instead of constantly crying about people not attending the snooze-fests they are planning, perhaps CSUN should reconsider what events they want to invest in and consider their audience a little better in the future.

On one last note, if the campus is truly just apathetic, why does CSUN keep hosting these types of events? Are they just stupid? If we’re apathetic to all of these, “Get to know your community” types of events perhaps they should cater to what the apathetic people want to see (gratuitous nudity) or perhaps they shouldn’t do anything at all and just send us students a refund check.

Thursday, April 24, 2003

What the Hell Was Santorum Talking About?
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: April 28, 2003

A political firestorm is beginning to erupt around Pennsylvania Republican Senator Rick Santorum over comments he made during an interview with the Associated Press. His comments were in response to a question about the pending decision from the Supreme Court on whether the States or the Federal Government can regulate consensual bedroom activity, like sodomy. He said, "If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual (gay) sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery, you have the right to anything. Does that undermine the fabric of our society? I would argue yes, it does." What the hell was he babbling about?

First of all he seems to think there is no right to privacy from the government, even in the case of intensely personal dealings that don’t violate anyone’s rights. This is alarming. A Senator in a leadership position of the supposed “limited government” political party seems to think you can in one instance, keep more of your money, but in the very next moment seems to think he can know what you’re doing in your home, because, of course, he may not agree with it.

Secondly he is comparing things inappropriately. You have no right to adultery, which is why if you commit it you’re punished in divorce court for violating your contract of marriage.
I don’t see anything criminal in bigamy or polygamy, if a man wants more than one wife and the women don’t mind then why should I care? This works the opposite way as well, for any of you women who want more than one guy, or girl, depending on your preference.

Incest is a more interesting problem. If it’s consensual then that is disturbing, but in most cases it isn’t, therefore making it rape and already illegal. But if it was consensual then I’m at a loss as to what the punishment should be. Jail? But how would that address the problem? Another article perhaps.

The point is that Santorum was comparing things not necessarily similar and it was all in an attempt to deny a basic right like one’s privacy from the government. If there were no right to privacy, as some of Santorum’s defenders, like Rush Limbaugh, seem to be implying, then why must the police get a warrant to search your home? If there weren’t a right to privacy then they would just be able to bust the door down search your place or just camp out in your house to await your committal of any given bedroom law. He is also implying that you don’t have any real right to your property or your life, by denying privacy.

He mentions that the fabric of our society is being undermined, what does that mean? Well I don’t know what he meant, because like all politicians, he didn’t bother to define himself, but I thought the fabric of our society was liberty and freedom and respect for individual rights and the rule of just laws. Perhaps the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence misled me at some point, but I doubt it.

In the end Santorum is merely illustrating the problem within the Republican Party. They proclaim to stand for limited government and capitalism yet some of their leaders seem to think you have no right your own body or your own privacy. You can’t have a free society without privacy and the absurd idea that we somehow cannot do as we please in our houses, assuming we aren’t killing people, is insulting and saddening.

I expect this kind of overt admission of tyranny from Tom Daschle and Ted Kennedy, but for Santorum it was unexpected. You can disagree all you want with homosexuality as a lifestyle and the bedroom practices of consenting adults the world over, but to use your disagreement as the basis of having the state interfere and outlaw those practices is despotic.

I advise all people who engage in unpopular or “illegal” consensual sexual practices to arm themselves. If Santorum or anyone else ever comes to your house to arrest you for such an “offense” then they have sunk to the level of every totalitarian the world has ever had to suffer through and deserves nothing better than befell those butchers. Police Officers, if they are in any way principled, should quit if ever given such an order, to arrest people for “illegal” consensual sexual practices.

Luckily I think the Supreme Court will finally do the right thing and get rid of the sodomy laws. Santorum should either educate himself as to what type of government he lives in or resign and head for Cuba or North Korea where he can meddle in and ruin peoples lives all day long.

Monday, April 21, 2003

Advice to Those Fighting to Legalize Drugs
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: April 24, 2003


In light of the Students for Sensible Drug Policy chapter at UNLV having its funding withdrawn, I think it’s time to rethink the strategy employed thus far that has led to the break between the national organization and our campus chapter.

As far as I can tell, the use of the marijuana plant upon flyers and organization literature, as well as on shirts, etc., angered the national organization to the point where they thought the UNLV chapter was doing more harm than good. They have a point, sensible drug policy includes more drugs than just marijuana, where are the shirts with lines of cocaine and heroin needles? But I don’t advocate wearing shirts that have drug paraphernalia on them in order to make the argument for drug legalization.

It’s not necessary, or even desirable, for one to use drugs or want to use drugs in order to want their legalization. There are two perfectly legitimate arguments to make for legalizing drugs, ones I rarely hear around here, and one very bad argument, which I hear far too often.

The bad argument first. It goes something like this, “Tobacco and alcohol kill far more people every year than marijuana and most other drugs, if not all of them put together, yet tobacco and alcohol are legal. Therefore, all other drugs should be legal too.” The reason this argument isn’t effective is because to make it you have to accept the premise that drugs kill people, whether it’s alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, heroin, ecstasy, or whatever. If you accept this premise as valid then the proper response is not to legalize all drugs, but to outlaw all of them because they are, in effect, murderers. It would be as if I said, “Handguns and rifles kills far more people every year than tanks and rocket propelled grenades, handguns and rifles are legal, therefore tanks and rocket-propelled grenades should be legal as well.” This is absurd reasoning though, inanimate objects can’t kill anyone and if you think they can then I suggest you do a little experiment. Sit in a room with a gun, a pack of cigarettes, and a bottle of gin. Don’t touch them; just wait for them to kill you. Time, though, inanimate as it is, will kill you.

The proper arguments for legalizing drugs are divided into two categories, weak and strong. The weak argument is this, “The constitution allows for no regulation of drugs by the Federal Government, therefore the DEA is an illegal institution.” This is true, but if the constitution were amended you’d have no ground to stand on. Plus you can then do nothing about the states, because they would be able to still make drugs illegal and enforce it. Plus there could be a law for anything, the Nuremberg Laws were used to justify Nazi atrocities; just because one has a law doesn’t make it right.

The strong argument is much more effective and can’t be assailed easily. It goes like this, “Humans are born with their lives and their liberty. They own their life and therefore their body. They can do with their body, as it is their inviolable property, whatever they wish, so long as it doesn’t violate the rights of anyone else (meaning it doesn’t infringe on the property, life, or liberty of others.) Drugs only damage the bodies and minds of those who use them. Therefore, they have a perfect right to buy or grow any drug they want and to use it.”

This does not mean that they can drive under the influence of drugs. Just as one cannot drive under the influence of alcohol, it would be illegal to drive under the influence of any other mind-altering drug.

It also does not mean that if you are worried about your friend or relative using drugs that your rights are violated. If you are worried then you have only recourse to private means of getting them to stop. If you cannot convince them to voluntarily stop using drugs that doesn’t mean you can bring the state into the matter to make you feel better, and the state has no right to intervene anyway.

It’s not cool to use illegal drugs, and I would never recommend it but I don’t presume to speak for the likes and dislikes of others and as I don’t want my rights violated I won’t violate other’s rights. As long as they don’t violate mine or anyone else’s in the process they can shoot up whatever the hell they want, if this means that they die from overdose then that is their own fault. I won’t and can’t be responsible for their mistake. Drug use is stupid, pointless, and contemptible, just as killing your dog would be, or raising a Nazi flag in your lawn, or burning a cross on your property. But you have the right, as you own your body, your lawn (presumably), and any animals, to do all of these things, but you also will be held responsible for all of them.

If you don’t get jobs because of your drug use, that’s your fault. If you die from drug use, that’s your fault. If all of your neighbors hate your Nazi-dog-killing ass, that’s your fault. Freedom means the freedom to do things, but also to live by the consequences of your actions. Just as if you speak publicly, and say something stupid or unpopular and then people don’t deal with you any longer. Unfortunately, the latter part of freedom is oft misunderstood and ignored.

Friday, April 18, 2003

Lenin’s Birthday
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: April 21, 2003

Nikita Khrushchev, Soviet Premier after Joseph Stalin, decided in 1955 that the country should celebrate their national political philosophy, communism. He chose as the day, April 22, Vladimir Lenin’s birthday, a tribute to the founder of the Soviet Union. When environmentalists decided that the Earth deserved a day of celebration in 1970, they could have picked any day of the year, as no one knows the exact day date of the Earth’s birthday. They chose Lenin’s birthday, just as Khrushchev had done. Was this just a coincidence? I think not.

Think of the parallels between Lenin and environmentalists. Lenin once said that, “It is true that liberty is precious; so precious that it must be carefully rationed.” Environmentalists second this wholeheartedly when they restrict the ownership and control of private property through the guise of saving the environment. The Endangered Species Act is used voluminously to take the property of anyone if an endangered species is living on it. President Clinton cordoned off thousands upon thousands of acres of land in the form of national parks with the alleged concern of saving the natural resources thereon from development. The federal government now controls nearly forty percent of all land in the continental United States. Lenin’s goal was to destroy private property and this goal is obviously shared by environmentalists.

Lenin’s political philosophy knew nothing of morality, he once said that, “There are no morals in politics; there is only expedience. A scoundrel may be of use to us just because he is a scoundrel.” Some environmentalists take this to heart as well, placing metal spikes in trees so that when these trees get to lumber mills the spike will ruin the saws and have in some cases injured or even killed mill workers.

Noted environmental genius, former Vice-President Al Gore, said in his book Earth in the Balance (not too melodramatic is it?), “Adopting a central organizing principle means embarking on an all-out effort to use every policy and program, every law and institution, every treaty and alliance, every tactic and strategy, every plan and course of action to use, in short, every means to halt the destruction of the environment.” He doesn’t condemn any action by individuals in this pursuit, nor does he at least advocate amending the constitution to make his goals legal. It is this mentality that Lenin was talking about, and that Al Gore encouraged; doing whatever is seen as necessary to gain victory for their cause. At least Lenin had the guts to call it what it was, communism, as opposed to Al Gore and others who claim to be protecting the Earth.

Of course the environmentalists could just have appropriately picked April 20, Adolf Hitler’s birthday. Hitler was a notoriously devout environmentalist, vegetarian, anti-smoker, and animal rights activist. Why didn’t they choose this date? Oh, yes, because then everyone would realize what their agenda is. Lenin’s birthday is less well known and Lenin’s history is shrouded in leftist propaganda, portraying his legacy as one of the many victims of Joseph Stalin. However Lenin’s reign of terror was just as deadly as Stalin’s and had Lenin not succumbed to death so soon into his rule he surely could have killed just as many as any other madman in the twentieth century.
Environmentalism is merely a politically viable excuse for the government to steal land, ironically in the name of future generations even though those future generations also can’t use it or benefit from any of the wealth contained in that land.

If you want to save the planet then get rich liberals like Ted Turner, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, and Oprah to buy it up and not let anyone use it. But the wholesale violation and destruction of private property rights is the method these people use, not because they are concerned for animals or the environment, but because they hate the rich (even the ones I just mentioned, except perhaps the celebrities) and the capable people of the world who use their reason to change worthless rock and elements into great inventions, food, buildings, and all the things that every environmentalist takes for granted, from the streets they protest on to the clothes they wear.

I’m almost half tempted to advocate eliminating private property around the world for a year so that everyone can see the catastrophe that would set in and the famine that would sweep the planet. Perhaps this would force the environmentalists to acknowledge the lunacy of their irrational hopes. But this would require them to look at reality and then act accordingly, something they have yet to do, so why should they start?

Monday, April 14, 2003

Cuba Under the Radar
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: April 17, 2003

Just last week three of the men involved in hijacking a Cuban ferry in order to flee to America were executed under the regime of Fidel Castro under the charge of terrorism. Where was the United States in all of this? Unfortunately while freeing a people and riding the world of a tyrant thousands of miles away in Iraq we’ve let a madman torture and terrorize the island ninety miles away from our coast for the last fifty years.

The incident with the ferry follows a series of airline hijackings in the past several months where Cubans have been fleeing Castro’s paradise to get to evil Capitalist America. The ferry incident was particularly tragic though as the men who took over the boat pointed it towards Florida and hit the throttle. The problem was that there wasn’t enough fuel and the boat stalled thirty miles away from Havana. This was the rational for not intervening; being thirty miles out the boat was still in Cuban waters technically. However, when it is in our power to save the lives of these people and help them escape from a brutal and tyrannical regime, shouldn’t we do it?

Even if you don’t support kicking that out of power, helping out some people who don’t want to live under oppression when they went to such lengths to escape and come to America isn’t much to ask at all. Instead the United States looked on while the standoff culminated in the seizure of the boat by Cuban Special Forces and then the subsequent executions of the men responsible for hijacking the ferry. Why did we do nothing? How could we watch on as people are killed for nothing ninety miles away?

Unlike the cause for the Spanish-American War, supposed Spanish suppression of Cuban nationalists, which was greatly exaggerated by American newspapers, we now have the exact opposite. We now have real, brutal, and systematic oppression of all human rights while the American media ignores it or even praises Fidel Castro’s regime, with ex-Presidents Carter and Clinton hamming it up with the dictator personally.

I don’t support getting rid of all dictators simultaneously with US military power for several reasons; 1) we’d have to greatly increase the armed forces which would cost more money than we currently spend on the whole budget, 2) some tyrants could nuke any armies we could put in the field (Kim Jong Il, Chirac, etc.), and 3) it would be unworkable as a policy because we would have to then help out all of these countries in fashioning constitutions and rebuilding any infrastructure we destroyed.

However in the case of Cuba the situation is different (each situation will be unique) as the island of eleven million has no particular loyalty to the Stalinist police state Castro runs and it’s proximity to us makes the job far cheaper and easily within our power to accomplish. But even if we don’t remove the outlaw regime in Cuba, to continue this policy of not helping out those who are escaping is unacceptable. Just as it would be unacceptable to not help fleeing slaves from the South in 1860 or Jews from the Nazis in 1942, one cannot morally stand by to watch fellow human beings slaughtered when they can stop it.

Some nativists will cry that we don’t need more immigrants, and if that is your argument then 1) you are an idiot, and 2) you should support the removal of Castro so that Cuba isn’t a place people risk and pay their lives to escape from.

Of course the same people who opposed the war to oust Saddam will not support a war to oust Castro because, like Saddam, he’s a socialist and therefore, their intellectual ally. But as they are so often wrong on everything I think listening to them on this matter would be just as stupid as it would be for anything else. For proof of this try getting one of these Peace Protestors to denounce Fidel. Good luck, because even if they say he is oppressive they’ll throw in a “BUT” and then proceed to tell you how great the education, health, sanitation, and power systems are in Cuba.

As one final caveat against this communist thug who runs Cuba, let us not forget that he is an international supporter of terrorism. And not the “terrorism” he accuses his poor people of (trying to flee his country) but real terrorism. Angola is a prime example of Cuban intervention and the training of communist militia units who then perpetrated terrorist acts on the Angolan people to affect a communist takeover and start a whole new brand of terrorism, a communist state. Luckily this was thwarted by U.S intervention in favor of the other side in the Angolan civil war, but why didn’t we just destroy the source of the problem, Fidel Castro?

Evil exists and there are hardly clearer examples of it than in Cuba. Perhaps we’ll someday deal with it and save the unfortunates who have and will continue to escape or at least attempt to do so. To not do so when we can is an implicit endorsement of Castro’s right to rule which he gave up when he took power.

Friday, April 11, 2003

VICTORY
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: April 14, 2003

Wednesday April 9, 2003 was a truly great day in modern history. Connecticut Senator Joseph Lieberman, a man whom I rarely agree with, declared that it was “VI Day,” for Victory in Iraq. But it was more than just that, it was a victory for all men everywhere against the irrationalism that has made people like Saddam Hussein possible.

Philosopher Ayn Rand once said that, “The spread of evil is the symptom of a vacuum. Whenever evil wins, it is only by default: by the moral failure of those who evade the fact that there can be no compromise on basic principles.” For far too long those in power have lived by compromise as the basis of dealing in foreign affairs. April 9 was another sign that that may be ending, slowly, but surely. Of course compromise is ok when the parties compromising at least agree in fundamentals. This is not the type of compromise Ms. Rand or I am referring too though.

Modern political philosophy is built on pragmatism, the belief that beliefs ought to surrender to whatever “works,” which ironically is defined differently depending on the particular beliefs of those deciding what “works.” This is the reason most people have given up on communism, because “while good in theory, it can’t work in reality.” Instead such people who think communism is “good in theory” now say that Democratic Socialism is the way to go, because that “works.”

The reason all of this is important to our War on Terrorism is simply that since Eisenhower let the Egyptian Socialist Dictator Nasser steal the property of the West, it has been acceptable, in American Foreign Policy, to either compromise vehemently with one’s enemies or just outright do nothing when provoked and attacked.
Nixon halted the Israelis from total victory in the 1973 war, so that the Arab aggressors wouldn’t be destroyed. Jimmy Carter, noted genius and paragon of peace the world over, let Iran fall apart and then did nothing when the Iranians openly declared their intention to destroy the west and America in particular, while holding Americans hostage. Luckily this cost him the Presidency.

Ronald Reagan made the situation worse by entering Lebanon and then running away when terrorists, sponsored by Iran, blew up a Marine barracks in Beirut. Libya openly sponsored all sorts of terrorist actions in Europe that ended up killing Americans. In return they received a few bombs, but the regime of Khadafi was left in place. George H. W. Bush liberated Kuwait from Saddam, but failed to liberate the Iraqis from him because the international coalition wouldn’t have approved, despite the moral question in play (if it is in one’s power to remove illegitimate tyrants, should one do so?) and his call on Iraqis to rebel and then not supporting them when they actually rebelled.

Bill Clinton continued this pattern by enduring numerous attacks, the bombing of US military apartments in Saudi Arabia, the first World Trade Center bombing, the Iraqi assassination plot against George H. W. Bush, the bombing of two of our African embassies by Al Qaeda, the attack on the USS Cole by Al Qaeda, and the flagrant violations by Saddam Hussein of his cease-fire obligations. For all this Bill Clinton chose to fight air wars in Bosnia and Kosovo instead, only occasionally firing cruise missiles at Bin Laden and Saddam.

George W. Bush probably would have been just as happy to continue in this shameful and inept manner except that the events of September 11, 2001 will not let him. Americans finally had to start dealing with terrorism and the states that sponsored it or be destroyed by them over time. We don’t compromise with the terrorist sponsoring states anymore once we focus of them, but we are still compromising with the United Nations, which is run by despots and tyrants no better than Saddam. Hopefully after the horribly long and useless process that preceded this operation in the War on Terrorism the Bush administration will not use the UN to defend America again.

The peace protestors were clearly wrong, as usual. The Iraqi people don’t love Saddam; they haven’t risen in a nationalist jihad to protect him from the American, British, and Australian forces in the country. They realized, unlike millions of people in America, that Saddam was a worthless illegitimate tyrant and were all too happy to be rid of him, perfectly willing to risk death from errant US bombs, missiles, and bullets. Hopefully the new Iraqi government, once it comes into being, will remember that millions of people all over the world fought to keep them oppressed and to allow Saddam to develop Weapons of Mass Destruction, which we are just now starting to discover.

You cannot compromise your ideals in politics, domestic or foreign. Slowly President Bush is realizing this. America must defend itself against the forces that are arrayed against it, whether it is Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction, Syria’s support for terrorism against our Israeli allies, North Korea’s willingness to sell weapons to terrorists, or Iran’s Islamist Jihad against the United States and their nuclear weapons program.

The irrational hope that you can defeat your enemies by compromising with them, or even more absurd, not fighting them at all, is what has gotten us to our current predicament. The only way to defeat our enemy is to hold to our values and destroy all who wage war against us, meaning the terrorists and the states that harbor and support them. The victories, which we have gained in Iraq and Afghanistan, will not end the terrorist threat when there are still governments in the region that are supporting Islamist Terrorism. To squander our momentum now and not press our counter-attack further would be a fatal mistake, one I hope that President Bush will not make.

Monday, April 07, 2003

Weren’t We Just Losing?
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: April 10, 2003

It was barely more than a week ago when pundits everywhere, from retired generals, to editorial pages on right and left were proclaiming defeat and quagmire for our troops in Iraq. A teacher remarked that the whole thing was a “debacle.” Rumsfeld and his horrible plan were to blame. Heads were going to roll.

Then, almost as quickly as the criticisms came the Iraqi army fell to pieces; even the vaunted “Fedayeen Saddam” were blown to bits on the road to Baghdad. Now the same people are hailing the plan they condemned as one of the greatest military operations in history, although the teacher I mentioned has fallen back on her “Blood for Oil” argument and some conspiracy allegations against the administration wanting to fight a perpetual war (despite the fact that Bush can only be President for eight years.)

What the hell happened?

Could it be that with the hopes in mind that the war would go badly and sink the Bush Presidency, the press jumped all over the couple of pieces of bad news and blew it into some sort of neo-Vietnam and Donald Rumsfeld into an inept putz the likes of Robert McNamara? It would appear so.

Sad that some of these people pin their hopes of political gain on a military “debacle” that means by implication the loss of a great many American lives. I wonder if they even know we’re in a war and have been since September 11, 2001?

Of course then potential rival of Bush in 2004, John Kerry, called for a “Regime change” in America, bringing into question whether or not he knows what government he lives under, since the word “regime” is usually used in reference to oppressive and illegitimate governments like Saddam’s. I think instead of wasting a good title like Things Fall Apart on a crummy book, Chinua could have documented the Democratic Party during the War on Terrorism instead, it would have proved far more interesting.

Funny that people that don’t have all the information and have never even seen the military plan that General Franks is working with ventured to put themselves so far out on a limb in judging it as soon as the enemy responded. Think of what these people would have crafted. They can’t handle casualties so they would have spent all their time crafting a plan where no Americans or innocent Iraqis could ever be killed. This may sound well and good, but the only way that could happen in war is to have no war at all. BINGO!

Could it be that they didn’t want war to begin with? Pat Buchanan and John McLaughlin are two noted right wingers who opposed going to war and then were two of the first to jump all over the plan when things seemed to go wrong, although in fairness to Buchanan, his criticisms were less asinine than McLaughlin’s. Nearly everyone else who opposed the war were either irrational religionists (the Pope) or lefties like Gore Vidal, and the nuts on the streets protesting. Big surprise that when the fastest military advance in the history of the world runs over a bump of opposition that all of these people, who opposed the military action in the first place, came out to criticize.

The dopiest thing said yet though is, “I still support the troops.” Oh really? Bush outranks everyone in the military, making him one of the troops. Do you support him? How can one support those who carry out an action one disagrees with? Did any Germans opposed to the Nazis say of the Hitler’s aggressions, “I don’t support wanton invasions and killing Jews, but I support the troops who are doing it”? I hope not. This is an extreme example of course, but the principle involved is no different.

According to those opposing the war, including certain Democratic congressmen who have called the war a “massacre,” this war will kill innocent women and children for nothing of course, because Saddam isn’t a threat. If that is what you believe, how can you then support the men and women actually killing the innocent women and children?

Too much muddled reasoning and too many false premises for one article really, but since we’re losing the war, or winning it, depending on anyone having been recently killed, it had to be done, for myself if not for everyone else as well.

Thursday, April 03, 2003

War Criminals, Who Should Deal With Them and How?
By Alexander Marriott
UNLV Rebel Yell: April 7, 2003

As the war goes on in Iraq we’ve already been confronted with what the Iraqi people have had to live with for nearly three decades, the utter savagery and barbarism of Saddam Hussein and his thugs.

With speculation about a possible chemical weapons attack, reports of executed American prisoners of war, and the continuing murder of their own civilians, the question arises, what do we do with these criminals after the war (assuming they live through it of course)?

One school of thought is to turn them all over, Saddam included if he is still alive, to the international court at The Hague to be prosecuted for crimes against humanity and war crimes. The theory here is that this will legitimize our actions with a veneer of international support and justice. But does this option really achieve a just end? The Hague can only impose a life sentence so that the countries that fund the international court can pay to keep Saddam alive for the rest of his life. Is this justice? A person can cause wholesale destruction for decades and slaughter countless numbers of people only to be jailed in the Netherlands where everything will be done to make sure his punishment is neither cruel nor unusual. Which in today’s terminology means he cannot go without gourmet meals, a television, access to any and all books he wants, and communication with the outside world. Not only this but his place of confinement will be a lightning rod for terrorists all over the world to plot his forcible release.

Another option is to copy our already established template from Nuremberg, except it would be in Baghdad. Let the Iraqi people try Saddam for his crimes against them, I’m sure there will be no shortage of people with horror stories about the murderous tyrant. Let his henchmen meet the same fate. And should a guilty sentence be reached then the mighty sword of justice will crash down upon them as it has been poised to do for years.

The liberated Iraqis will need this more than anything to dispel Saddam’s aura of invincibility and to take away any fear that he could return again as Napoleon did from Elba. Not to mention it sends the message to dictators all over the world that when people have their vengeance, it will be legal and merciless. Perhaps Fidel should start thinking about this, unless all of his people hijack their way out of Cuba before he is gone.

Not to detract from the seriousness of the matter at hand though. These savages who run Iraq are not only a threat to the people of these United States, but they are a blight upon the history of mankind. Their lack of respect for the sovereignty of individuals and their rights is truly despicable and sickening.

The people who get tried in these forums usually claim they were either “Only following orders” or that the court has no right to try them. The first claim is a denial of free will, which contradicts itself because how did the guy giving the order give it? The second claim is just stealing the concept of “rights” when it suits them.

They didn’t care about rights when they condemned people to torture and death for thinking differently. They didn’t care about rights when they raped women in order to force compliance. They didn’t care about rights when they used chemical weapons. They didn’t care about rights when they cut out tongues, when they used human shields, or when they abused and tortured our POWs. For them to claim afterwards that a court has no right to try them for these crimes and many more is merely the final crime of another group of tyrants. They are so used to just dictating the law, the economy, and everything else that they seem to forget objective law and the will to enforce it still exist in the world.

They will know this soon enough and it couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch.