November 25, 2006

A Certain Darkness Of The Heart
Islamo-fascism. A word frought with meaning to both the left and the right. Some may prefer the term jihadist, others islamist. But, in reality, regardless of what it is called, it is the same darkness of the heart. To some these are terms used only by an "islamo-phobe" by others, an apt description of the pseudo-political/quasi-religious expression of a group of people that have decided that their way to salvation is jihad and martyrdom. Would that it were not so, but it is, like it or not, and it describes "A Certain Darkness of the Heart."
The Iranians had no intention... of intervening in the occupation of the embassy

Remember November 4th, 1979? That was the day an act of war was perpetrated on the United States in the form of the Islamic Republic of Iran's invasion of, and occupation of the United States Embassy. Unfortunately for the United States and the 52 hostages held for the majority of the 444 days of captivity (the original number of hostages was 66 but 14 were released over a period of time for a variety of reasons) this act of war was not met by any action by the then President of the United States, Jimmy Carter. Carter had allowed the Former Shah of Iran, Reza Pahlavi who had stepped down in January of 1979 and the so called Islamic Republic, fronted by the "students" felt that America was "corrupting" their republic. The Iranians, of course, had no intention of interveining in the occupation of the embassy, though it should be obvious that the release of the hostages was later engineered by the Iranian governmnet because of their fear of what might happen when Ronald Reagan replaced Casper Milquetoast Jimmy Carter. Reagan had not focused much blaming Carter, but he did promise to rebuild the military and once again take America forward. The absolute landslide (almost 51% of the popular vote and almost 91% of the electoral vote) indeed must have given the Iranian's pause. Their "Islamic" republic faced with massive military retaliation from the United States as opposed to the withering leadership of Carter learned not to challenge the US like that again. But that didn't stop them for long, by 1983, using their proxy Hezbollah they once again attacked the Great Satan, this time not with students, but with bombs.

I recall the bombing of the Marine Barracks in 1983 and a fierce anger that welled up inside at a group of people that were willing to kill to make a pseudo-political point. President Reagan, rightly or wrongly, had sent the United States Marines into Lebanon to help quell the violence and hopefully bring about a solid peace. The French had also sent troops in with the same intent.

Reagan's response, to our later detriment was to pull out the troops and thereby set the stage for the radicalization of much of the Muslim World.
Sadly, one side of that conflict decided that a political statement had to be made and it was best made by committing an act of wanton murder. Car bombs in the Marine Barracks and in the French Foreign Legion Barracks killed 300 people as they slept in their beds or made quiet converstation, while they wrote letters home or played cards to while away the time. Reagan's response, to our later detriment was to pull out the troops and thereby set the stage for the radicalization. This singular act of the islamo-fascists was not about bringing peace to the area or retaliating against evil invaders; it was about fostering further hatred and bloodshed. The factions that perpetrated this act did not want peace, did not want a cessation of the bloodshed, did not want anything that might reconcile the differences between the factions engaged in essentially civil war for that would not suit their aim.

It is a truism in behavior modification that behaviors you want repeated you reward, and behaviors you want extinguished you either punish, cease rewarding and allow them to fall by the wayside. This has been proven time and time again in human behavior and the islamo-fascists have been amply rewarded time and again by the non-reaction, or worse, the placid acceptance of terrorism as a fact of life in this modern, psychotic reality we call the present. And yet, our leaders (and those of the western world) have not learned that truism. From Carter, to Reagan, to Bush 41 to Clinton to Bush 43, all have fallen short of the need to smack down this latest incarnation of the vile fascist ideology. True, all but Carter has lobbed more than a few bombs. Reagan punished Kadaffi with a few attacks, Bush 41 pushed back Saddam from Kuwait with mostly the approval of the world, Clinton lobbed a few missles and bombing runs, but in large, they all have not focused on the danger presented by the islamo-fascist. Indeed, neither has most of the world and the cancer has grown apace.

In current political thinking, the war in Iraq is not seen as a war against the islamo-fascist by most, it is seen rather, by many, as a flawed expidition based on inadequate at best, or faked intelligence at worst. Yet, the idea was sound, take out Saddam, a drive a wedge between two state sponsers of terrorism. Both Iran and Syria are part and parcel of the growing mindset of islamo-fascism present in the world today, and indeed, other middle east states join in this enterprise on the stealthy side. Some more so like Saudi Arabia who exports a Wahabbist extreemism to some less so like Pakistan whose intelligence apparat openly sides with Al Qaeda and the Taliban.

From Carter, to Reagan to Bush 41 to Clinton to Bush 43 , all have fallen short...

9/11 focused us on the need to destroy Al Qaeda in it's hatred of the US and the western world. Let no one doubt that Bin Laden and his fellow travelors want to do that indeed. From the train bombings in Madrid to the bus bombings in London, to the attempted attacks in Germany, to the nighclub bombs in Bali, and the "car burning" orgies of Paris, and the attempt to take down a dozen airliners plotted in England, there is a war going on, a war that is concieved in the mindset of the islamo-fascists and carried out across the globe.

We, in the west have political leaders who call Islam the "Religion of Peace" and perhaps it is. There is certainly evidence in the Koran to support that declairation. There is also evidence in the old testament of the Bible to state that there is much in the Judeo-Christian that is warlike and blood-thirsty. Yet, there are differences too. Much of the Koran is filled with extortations to force the non-muslim into either dihimmitude or death. You won't find that in the New Testament. You will see Muslim street demonstrations calling for the death of the so called "Great Satan" or Israel and the Jews, or even England, but you won't find huge crowds of Christians or Jews calling for the death/destruction of say Saudi Arabia or Syria or Iran, though, given the actions of those three countries that may come in the future, in fact, demonstrations against Syria and to a lesser extent Iran are now ongoing in Lebanon following the implication of at least Syria in multiple political assasinations, but that is for a latter post. You seldom (never?) see Christians rioting in the streets because Christ was the subject of a cartoon. A cartoon for Pete's Sake. And the Muslim Rioters? Why they held up signs saying "Death" and "Behead" to those who depict Mohammad in a cartoon. Not to say anything about shooting a nun in the back because the Pope quoted an Emperor speaking hundreds and hundreds of years ago.

Part of the current political divide in this country over the war in Iraq and the war on terrorism, between those who support the "pull out" crowd or at least support something similar and those who support the effort in Iraq and continuing the war on terrorism is the degree to which the individual, clique, political party or tribe see the threat of islamofascism.

In organizational psychology courses and management courses political tactics within an organization are often discussed. There are a number of such tactics and Andrew DuBrin has written extensively on their use and their benefits as well as their drawbacks. The internal conflict between Democrats and Republicans, or, if you will, between left of center and right of center often revolves around taking the opposite side of the argument, regardless of the rightness of any given argument. Thus, if the right calls for stern measures against islamo-fascists the left takes either an appeasement approach or the vaunted (but oh-so-difficult) cut and run approach. The political tactic often used in this conundrum is "embrace or demolish." In other words, do it my way or I'll cut you to pieces; if you do not see it my way, see my vision, I will make your life miserable. The Democrats famously used this as "The Politics of Personal Destruction" implying that the Republicans were the one's using this tactic, when in fact, it was entirely mostly the Democrats who used said politics. This is not to say that the Republican's didn't do their share. So we get such stellar terms as Rethuglicans, Dimocrats, etc. I've even used some of these terms myself, and meant them too. But no one has called me anything if not partisan and I make no claim to be otherwise. Anothe tactic is called "manipulate classified information." The Democrats accuse Bush 43 of doing just that when he gave reasons for going into Iraq, the Democrats believed it too, until they saw that they could make political hay out of saying "Bush Lied."

But this is not about the left or the right, except in-so-far as it applies to what to do about the islamo-fascists.

U.S. interests have been attacked again and again by the islamo-fascists. 1993 the first bombing of the World trade center, killing 6, wounding more than 1000. 1996 bombing of the U.S. military housing complex in Dhahran,Saudi Arabia, killing 19 American servicemen and wounding hundreds of people. 1998, bombing of two US Embassy's (again, and act of war according to international law) in both Keyna and Tanzania killing 264 people and wounding thousands. 2000 an attack against a US warship the USS Cole killing 17 and wounding 39. 2001, flying two airplanes full of passengers into the World Trade center, the Pentagon and one plane in which the passengers fought back but the plane crashed into a field killing all onboard. And still the mayhem goes on in Iraq where Muslim kills Muslim in sectarian violence and Al Qaeda and their ilk and supporters in Syria and Iran egg the whole process on.

You cannot talk to these people... You cannot reason with these people... for they are bereft of reasonThey [...] have no need to understand...

It should be a truism that if someone says that they want to kill you, you should believe them and take appropriate action. To date, many of us on the left and the right take Al Qaeda and the other islamo-fascists at their word, but disagree on what to do.

We have seen what doing nothing will do and we have seen it since the waining days of the Carter Administration. You cannot talk to these people for they think talking is just another way of whiling away the time until they can cut your head off. You cannot reason with these people for they are bereft of reason. Here recently, we had 6 Imams or Islamic Scholars loudly praying, acting "suspicious" and otherwise deliberately causing a ruckus. They excused this by saying that we, of the west, should have knowledge and understanding of Islam. They on the other hand, have no need to understand the very understandable fears of 6 Islamic men, acting strangely in a plane and reacting the way in which the passengers did. It boggles the mind.

And yet the need to do something should be paramount to all in the west, regarless of whether they consider themselves left or right, but that does not seem to be the case. For if we do not, we acques to this darkness of the heart, and we will drink bitter tea for a long time to come before the west finally rises up and smacks down the new fascism running rampant in the world. The Pope has been threatened in his upcoming trip to Turkey, Iran threatens to annihilate Israel. Gazans rain rockets on Israel for getting out of Gaza. CAIR defends the indefensible and the world stands by, watches, and shrugs its collective shoulders.

Perhaps Dr. Sanity said it best regarding the 6 Imams issue, but with applicability to my whole theme:

And, even more than all that, I am thoroughly disgusted with all western leaders who continually seek to appease what cannot be appeased; who in their cowardly fashion spout multicultural and politically correct nonsense as they sell-out Western values and freedoms; who want to endlessly "dialogue" with barbarians; who want to protect the rights of those who want to kill us; and denounce anyone who has the courage to stand up to the monsters of Islam. I am filled with inarticulate anger at the western media who, rather than fulfilling its historic mission to tell truth to power, now uses its enormous power to silence the truth.
The darkness of the heart continues to grow, and we have no will to sap its strength or its rate of growth.

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Filed under: War on Terror, Middle East Politics and Terror, and Militaria.

Posted by GM Roper at November 25, 2006 09:51 PM | TrackBack

Great post GM. You rightly point out about rewarding positive behavior and punishing negative to gain a desired response. You get more of what you subsidize. Pay farmers not to grow corn, more farmers do not grow corn. Pay teens to have babies, more teens have babies.

Capitulate to the demands of terrorists and you get more demands. If we do what THEY want in response to their actions, we will get more of their actions. It is a conditioned response, they learn to act in response to certain things.

Does the name Pavlov ring a bell? (I knew you would like that given your profession)

Posted by Big Dog at November 25, 2006 11:20 PM

In October, I wrote:

"The “holy war” against western culture is a total commitment to the destruction of non-Islamic beliefs. Extremists have actually undertaken several strategies to accomplish their long- range goals. We cannot ignore the fact that they have created insurgencies in Iraq, civil disturbances in western societies, and imbedded “sleeper cells” throughout the western lands, including the United States. They have instituted a sophisticated public relations campaign, designed to convince those who waiver that Muslims generally intend us no harm. Through campaign contributions, our lawmakers are co-opted (bribed is a better word) to support their cause. I recently learned that Muslims have been so successful, in fact, that now Canada is considering the creation of an autonomous region where Muslims can live under Shar’ia Law. To illustrate how wrong headed this is, where is an autonomous region for Buddhists, Hindus, or Taoists?"

"So yes, in fact we are at war. It is a “holy war” because the Muslims themselves have told us so. It is “total war” because our enemy is totally committed to our destruction. And in my view, the Muslims are likely to win this war. America has failed to unite behind the real possibility that our way of life – the freedoms we say we love and will protect, is in greater danger now than it ever was in previous generations. If the Muslims win this war, we’ll all convert to Islam, or we’ll all be dead."

Nothing has happened of late to change this view. And this is an exceptional post, GM.

Posted by Mustang at November 26, 2006 04:50 AM

Great post, GM!
I would only add, in President Reagan's own words:
President Reagan didn't want to pull the Marines out of Lebanon, and he wanted to retaliate.
Here are the reasons for his decision:
1. Our intel., at the time, could not identify those responsible for the bombing.
2. The Lebanese army refused to fight (deja vu).
3. The Democrat controlled Congress demanded an immediate withdrawal (deja vu deux).
4. The American people were generally apathetic about Lebanon, and the WILL wasn't there (deja vu 3).
5. Israeli PM Begin resigned.
Unfortunately, President Reagan had no choice but to pull the Marines out.
He knew the ramifications and consequences, but with virtually no support by Conress or the American people,
what could he do?
Read President Reagan's account. You won't be disappointed
in President Reagan after you see what he was up against.

Posted by Ben USN (Ret) at November 26, 2006 09:18 AM

Like most Americans, I hate to see our troops getting killed or injured in Iraq.
I understand why most on the left, and some on the right, want to pull our troops out, to prevent any further deaths and injuries.
But if we do cut and run, we will see more death and injuries to American civilians and civilians in other countries.
That is why our Military fight so hard, to protect their families, friends and neighbors.
Pulling the troops out now, is like telling police officers to stay at the police station so they won't get hurt, while the criminals kill and injure civilians at will.
It doesn't make sense, and that is why our Heroes in the Military want to stay and complete their mission.
The best way we can honor their sacrifices is to allow them to do their job, with unified support back home.

Posted by Ben USN (Ret) at November 26, 2006 09:30 AM

Ben, good link and summary on President Reagan's dilemma in Lebanon.

In a post in October ( ), we discussed an "observation on Arabs" by another blogger, who concluded that the West could only stop Islamic terrrorism by, what I interpret, destroying them.

That blogger's latest post as of today ( ) goes back to his analysis on Arabs and updates it for reactions--for which objections simply call him a "racist," which totally shuts off honest and possible solutions with politically correct attacks. So, his experience is right down the line with what your post reveals.

Posted by Woody at November 26, 2006 09:37 AM

Reagan wisely saw that Lebanon was a 'no win' for the U.S. and withdrew the troops. Clinton also wisely saw that Somalia was a 'no win' and pulled out.
Too bad the current occupant of the White House wasn't as smart.
We need to defeat militant Islmamism, but we're not going to do in a ground war. There's too many of them and they're too willing to die.

Posted by gregdn at November 26, 2006 11:56 AM

"Here recently, we had 6 Imams or Islamic Scholars loudly praying, acting "suspicious" and otherwise deliberately causing a ruckus."

I brought this up just the other day. It's an "in-your-face" kind of behavior. This was not at all common in the past. Before 9/11 how many times did you see a group of Muslims stand up and pray loudly in a crowded area and make anti-American remarks? I'll bet no one can cite a single instance. One can blow smoke up my patootie all day long with "They have a right!", but they can't fool me into thinking this wasn't an orchestrated event. Now they are testing the waters to bring about a self-fulfilling prophesy. "Americans are intolerant and ignorant boobs, so let's do something that will provoke the reaction we want so we can criticize it." They know that we are wary of abnormally overt behavior on planes, yet this is what they choose to do and then throw it in everyone's face calling them intolerant and bigoted. I mean who can argue that it's wrong to pray, right?

Posted by Oyster at November 26, 2006 12:06 PM

Came from Dr. Sanity's. Good post.

One of the goals of using terrorism, aka terrorizing, is to provoke a response that can then be 'spun' as disproportionate, thereby setting the grievance machinery in motion. Which sets the stage for another act of intimidation, an in-your-face-, dare. Which will either provoke a response or, the population being worn out by then, will simply allow itself to be dominated. So one eventually gets to either submission or bloodshed.

Posted by Cindi at November 26, 2006 04:17 PM

gregdn - well, that's certainly a common opinion, that getting out of these places would be all for the best. We certainly have tried it a few times. We still have problems with Islamic narcissists who want to destroy us.

Maybe it's not the withdrawing that encourages them, whatever bin Laden may say. Maybe it really is historical decisions made by Europeans decades and centuries ago. But just as an experiment, I'd like us to outright win a war just once, to see what happens.

Posted by Assistant Village Idiot at November 26, 2006 04:24 PM

Asst VI:
I consider Gulf War I a victory: we assembled a broad coalition, contained a clear case of aggression and forced Saddam back over the line.
Now, this did leave him in still in power, but it also kept Iran in check.

Posted by gregdn at November 26, 2006 04:52 PM

I absolutely concur with The Assistant Village Idiot. The whole bloody world is watching. All the nuances, terrifically good reasons, etc will NOT matter. If we are seen as slinking off, no matter how/why it is done....that is ALL that will be recorded and remembered. It will embolden our enemies and discourage our friends.

Stated in more simplistic terms: FIX....BAYONETS

Posted by tad at November 26, 2006 06:23 PM

gregdn... one of the problems from the Gulf War I is that by NOT taking out Saddam, the islamo-fascist sees us as being "weak" and that has encouraged them. This is a big time lesson in behavior modification as I noted. NOT punishing the islamo-fascist is seen as weakness, using nuance is seen as weakness... why do you think Al Qaeda rejoiced at us sending a Democratic congress up?

Posted by GM Roper at November 26, 2006 06:55 PM

I see the situation with terrorist as similar to the situation described in "Beast in the Garden" in which mountain lions increasingly encroached in suburban Boulder, CO. Many kept insisting they could peacefully co-exist with the mountain lions, even after a jogger was killed by one.

The only way we can peacefully co-exist with terrorists is for them and the countries that support them to be deathfully afraid of us. Unfortunately, to many people in the U.S., Europe and other places believe we can have "dialogue." You can''t deal with the devil.

Posted by DADvocate at November 26, 2006 06:59 PM

it should be obvious that the release of the hostages was later engineered by the Iranian governmnet because of their fear of what might happen when Ronald Reagan replaced Casper Milquetoast Jimmy Carter

The release of the hostages had more to do with the death of the Shah and the invasion of Iran by Iraq. Reagan's involvement with Iran mostly involved selling them arms, shuffeling the profits to the Contras and scapegoating Oliver North when the poop hit the fan. The 80's were good years for Iranian fundamentalism thanks to the Regan administration.

Posted by e. nonee mooseq at November 26, 2006 07:17 PM

I consider Gulf War I a victory: we assembled a broad coalition, contained a clear case of aggression and forced Saddam back over the line.

And that's your conceptual problem, gregdn. Gulf War I was precisely NOT a victory; it was a tie. Nobody gained anything; nobody lost anything. It ended with a return to the status quo ante. People can argue that this was the best attainable outcome for the cost we or the coalition were willing to pay (although the Kurds and Shiites we encouraged to revolt and left to die might disagree), but no one can reasonably argue that leaving Saddam in power was anything more than a truce that kicked the can down the road and guaranteed another war later. Which we're in now.

Pay now, or pay later. Later always costs more.

Posted by Kelly at November 26, 2006 10:23 PM

I like your post, and I agree with your conclusions. My problem is what exactly do you advocate? The response that this Bush made is going badly. You and most of your respondents feel that was the correct decision. But what do you say to the fact that Iraq was the wrong target? It has been clearly shown that Iraq and Saddam had no part in the 9/11 bombing. Almost all of the bombers were Saudis. The most dangerous Islamic sect is that called Wahabi. That is also a Saudi (state supported) group. Bin Ladin is a Saudi also a Wahabi.
So tell me, what would you do to stop the Islamo-fascist?

Posted by James S Melbert at November 26, 2006 11:18 PM a wedge between two state sponsers of terrorism

You got it, there. However, if the current news rumblings are accurate, it looks like we're about to throw in the towel by "negotiating a settlement" with Syria and Iran - under the window dressing of "realism" that our government may be able to sell to the American public as "peace with honor" but which the rest of the world will correctly see as an abject American defeat. And we will then have the Devil to pay.

You're spot on with your larger point about our growing acquiescence in (and consequent complicity with) the "darkness of the heart" as we lose sight of the genuine evil, the malice, the worship of death by the Islamists and their accolytes. As the darkness deepens, it becomes ever harder to see one's moorings.

Posted by civil truth at November 26, 2006 11:32 PM

I'm serious, if you have any idea at all, tell us. It's certain that no one in Washington has the inkling of an idea as to what to do. General Abiziad (sp) has no idea.
Also, I hear people say we have to finish the job. What is the job? How will we know that it's finished? What are our soldiers doing in Iraq? If they are there just to police and try to keep the Iraqi from killing each other. The war is over, and the occupation is failing. What are we accomplishing by staying?

Posted by James S Melbert at November 26, 2006 11:39 PM

Oyster, I think you're right about the imans. This was not insensitivity; it was a deliberate provocation designed to be a no-lose proposition. After all, Muslim clerics have been flying for years during prayer times (or been in other public spaces) and nothing like this has happened before.

If nothing happened, then the imans would have succeeded in expanding Islam into the public space and open the doors to widespread public prayers by Muslims at the "appointed" times five times a day.

And if they were stopped, then their allies would cry persecution and racism, etc. which would put pressure on allowing this behavior in the future.

Either way, they win...and we lose.

Taranto references the sensible alternative approach taken recently by Orthodox rabbis during airline travel.

Posted by civil truth at November 26, 2006 11:49 PM

Politics force everyone to take the easy route - the comfortable trip as far away from "pain" as possible since "pain" looses your election for you. THEN - if someone takes on the "heavy lifting" everything is forgotten and the "lifter" becomes a scapegoat and the momentum changes the task back to politics.

Posted by chrys at November 27, 2006 01:55 AM

GM's Corner says "It is a truism in behavior modification that behaviors you want repeated you reward, and behaviors you want extinguished you either punish, cease rewarding and allow them to fall by the wayside."

Yes! It is almost -- no I daresay it is absolute truth, that the Right has completely forgotten how to modify people's behavior with the rewards part of this equation. And no, I'm not speaking of Democrats, I'm speaking of Al Qaeda.

The Right is so wound up and afraid of "appeasement", and so bent on tit or tat, that they can't consider even tiny a move like "talking" is something that must be rewarded.

I'm sure you all have well behaved children, because your sole method is to beat them to keep them in line. Sure, they aren't terrorists, but humans respond the same whether they are children or terrorist camp trained adults. You can't simply beat your kids and expect good results.

Terrorists don't give us much to work with, but they do give bits and pieces, and it's possible to work with that.

If you want to keep trading dead bodies with terrorists for the next 100 years, just forget about this post.

Posted by Walkthisway at November 27, 2006 06:44 AM

Walkthisway, you misunderstand the post and the behavioral approach. You mention raising kids

I'm sure you all have well behaved children, because your sole method is to beat them to keep them in line. Sure, they aren't terrorists, but humans respond the same whether they are children or terrorist camp trained adults. You can't simply beat your kids and expect good results.
and you are correct in concept and totally wrong in application. If a child sticks his tongue out at his brother, a stern talking to is entirely appropriate, you don't beat the child senseless to correct a minor misbehavior. Nor, do you equate "killing" as a punishment with a swift swat on the seat of the pants.

That you obviously know the difference but choose to hide that in your post, indicates to me that you are not being serious in the least.

Too, would you honestly, offer to sit down and talk with someone who is actively swinging a spiked club at your head or would you violently defend yourself. That is closer to the real situation.

Look at this from the side of the islamofascist and their supporters, specifically the Saudi's. They "reward" the appeasement of the west with oil. Al Qaeda, indicate please, if you will, when exactly they have been willing to sit and talk?

When have any talks with either Iran or Syria proved to be beneficial in the least? How about the "talks" regarding Iran's work on nuclear weapons? That has worked real well hasn't it?

It seems that perhaps in your haste to be glib with a flip comment here, you forgot TR's advice: "Speak softly - but carry a big stick."

Posted by GM Roper at November 27, 2006 07:38 AM

If one of my kids was going around blowing people up, you can bet that he would get more than a "talking." Fortunately, American kids aren't doing the same things as Islamic terrorists. You can always count on someone from across the aisle to make such a comparison.

Posted by Woody at November 27, 2006 08:02 AM

No, I'm not being glib. When I said that a terrorist may indicate he may want to talk, this is a very small thing, but very important. He may not want to talk about anything that is even remotely possible to negotiate (the obliteration of Israel, for instance), but "talking" in and of itself is a much more positive thing than a beheading or a bombing. And it should be regarded as a positive thing to be rewarded, precisely because it is not one of those things.

GMsays -"Too, would you honestly, offer to sit down and talk with someone who is actively swinging a spiked club at your head or would you violently defend yourself."

What we do is, we find ways to reward the terrorist at the moments he's not swinging a club at our head. We don't necessarily ask them, we reward them when they perform correctly, however small that action may be, it will be moving them in the right direction.

It may be ridiculous to assume a house cat can be trained, but in fact you can train one to stand on its head if you're persistent. You reward for any small progress in the direction you wish to go.

And that last part applies to Iran and N. Korea. It's not about the worth of talking or not talking, it's about rewarding your opposition when they move in the direction you wish -- simple reinforcement.

Too long we've only paid attention to the "stick." That's why I said half of that important statement you made is going to waste.

I hope that was clear

Posted by Walkthisway at November 27, 2006 08:25 AM

Walk, my own opinion is that you think terrorists would respond like we would.

Posted by Woody at November 27, 2006 09:16 AM

Woody, it's certainly true that terriorests will respond in the same manner as we have.

Posted by James S Melbert at November 27, 2006 02:48 PM


What we do is, we find ways to reward the terrorist at the moments he's not swinging a club at our head. We don't necessarily ask them, we reward them when they perform correctly, however small that action may be, it will be moving them in the right direction.
The only problem Walk and Jimmy, is that when they talk, and we talk, you (certainly not me) see that as extending a reward for incremental positive behavior. They have shown, by their consistant actions, that they see it as weakening of our resolve/ability and respond (so far) with more terror. That is the problem with the whole islamo-fascist mindset, they are not reasonable people like I assume you are and they will not react in the same way that you would. At least that is the way I see it.

Posted by GM at November 27, 2006 03:59 PM

Bravo, GM!

Back in '83 I wrote my first high school "current events" report on that Hezbollah bombing. Most of my sources were from the New York Times (it's how I was raised, forgive me). The most memorable article was a Sunday "Week in Review" Page One story called, typically, "Elusive Targets."

Posted by Jeremayakovka at November 27, 2006 06:24 PM

Well, talking is certainly nice and all, but to what extent do you think the other side is willing to be honest and follow through? How many talks have we and others engaged in in regards to the Israeli/Palestinian issue? And to what extent has any progress been made? I wouldn't exactly consider Iran or Syria trustworthy.

Posted by Oyster at November 28, 2006 07:24 AM

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