Saturday, July 22, 2006

Easy For You To Say

empathy- identification with, understanding of, and vicarious experience of another person's situation, feelings, and motives.

Basically, I've reached the point of disgust, listening to all the commentary from apologists who rationally argue about justifications. Conventiently missing from the hawks logic, the most basic premise of all- compassion. Chastizing the "bleeding hearts" for demonstrating some empathy for fellow human beings, the "measured" response crowd never mentions the human cost- war is hell. Easy for someone sitting in their cozy world to merely fluff off horrific images and real tragedy.

It is amazing to listen to people speak with such cold detachment as if this current situation is the only option. It is as if the word "terrorism" absolves people from moral responsiblity and allows operations with impunity. I ask the apologists, what if you were there? What if you were an ordinary citizen, living in a world with little control and were merely a pawn in a calculated game played out by others? Wouldn't you hope that someone would speak for you? Because, the bottomline of this entire mess, it is largely the innocents that are victims and the world's inaction equates to passive approval.

The counter- what would you have the Israeli's due, nothing? Clearly the answer is no, however there are other options that don't necessitate cute terms like "collateral damage". Most of the Arab world had turned against Hezbollah, which equates to unprecedented support for Israel's predicament. This afforded an excellent diplomatic opportunity to stifle Hezbollah, prop up the fledgling Lebanese army, pressure Syria to cut off support and gradually marginalize the "extremists". What was required was restraint, a long-term view that didn't put Lebanon proper back at square one. The folly of the current offensive is revealed in the past- this tactic has already been tried and failed. The only road to long-term stability is developing the society, infastructure, economy, while simulatenously supporting the forces for good. The extremists don't evaporate either way, but the one path doesn't bring in the added human cost, which makes the choice obvious.

So, to all the rational apologists, go cut the lawn, hit the links, barbeque your steak and coldly debate why kids need to have their guts blown out, while their mother wails. Sorry for the inconvenience, but that is precisely what is happening and no amount of justification makes that okay. What if it was you? The ironic part, the "bleeding hearts" you ridicule would be the first to come to your aid.


Susan said...

Exactly!! If leaders say there's nothing they can do to stop, or not to start, this horror, then we should get new leaders. That is our responsibility as citizens.

Lept said...

Horrific how we find ourselves with a PM who agrees with the likes of Newt Gingrich (here).
...and a side issue for our Liberal Party hack friend: what would the stand of Ignatieff be, if he weren't just a candidate for the job?

Steve V said...


In fact our leadership has given a green light to this offensive. There is some culpability in saying nothing.


You might find this angle interesting. They may be behind the curtain, but they are clearly on stage.

Lept said...

and that's what is so flabbergastingly obvious about the Newt thing - the christian armageddonists taking over more quickly than anyone ever suspected.
Could this be the reform-achilles heel?

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