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March 22, 2004
Just Desserts

About Israel's removal of the terrorist leader Ahmed Yassin, Andrew Stuttaford in NRO's The Corner asks,

Yassin was, undeniably, a bad man and there's no need to shed many, or any, tears over him, but can anyone explain what, exactly, was achieved by his killing?
I would think the answers would be obvious: deterrence and justice.

The deterrence angle is probably the weaker of the two. People who seek "martyrdom" are not too likely to be afraid of death, unless it comes without the usual innocent civilian victims. On the other hand, we don't often see the leaders of terrorist organizations like Al Qaeda or Hamas strapping the explosives to themselves. They'd rather send gullible fanatics out to do their dirty work. You'd think they were eager to get their 72 raisins, but apparently not. So perhaps those who have "terrorist leader" as their career goal will re-think their aspirations.

Punishment seems to be a more likely reason for Israel to have whacked that evil SOB. Justice doesn't need to be done in a courtroom, after all. But justice must not only be done, it must be seen to be done... and I'd wager there's not a single Israeli who doesn't know that Yassin is now terminated. The elimination of Yassin is, for Israel, as big as or bigger than the US exterminating Usama bin Laden in a spectacularly public fashion (which I hope we do soon... assuming he's not already a puddle of decomposing slime in a cave somewhere.)

Rot in hell, Yassin.

Posted by Russ at 05:20 PM, March 22, 2004 in Nat'l Security

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I could go for the punishment option but that's not what Israel did. You see, Israel occupies all of Palestine, their troops move anywhere they wish to go at will. It was only a short time ago when they drove tanks right through Yassar Arafat's home. Yassin was in a wheel chair and could have easily been arrested, brought to trial, then sentenced to death, but the powers that be were apparently afraid of allowing this old man the right to a trial as required by Isralie law, so they took him out instead. Could it be that Sharon has something to hide, something he didn't want Yassin to tell an Israeli Judge? To think that Sharon's government isn't at least half the problem is to deny the obvious.

Posted by: Yellow Dog '04 at March 22, 2004 06:51 PM

Comparing the Israeli government to the murdering terrorists is the worst sort of moral equivalence.

If the Israelis ever start sending suicide bombers to blow up Palestinian schoolbuses, then maybe I'll reconsider.

Posted by: Russ at March 22, 2004 07:00 PM