When Israel announced that it was pulling its settlements out of the West Bank, rational people would have expected the Palestinians to rejoice -you know, dance in the streets like they did after 9-11.
Terrorists aren't rational people. Consequently, when Israel began leaving the West Bank, Hamas and Islamic Jihad started a renewed round of attacks on Israeli targets.
Why? Well, it seems those fanatics wanted their followers to think they were chasing Israel out of occupied territory. It's hard to look tough when the other guy is leaving peacefully.
The nitwits at MoveOn.org have taken PR lessons from Hamas - and some Augusta dupes are swimming in that same cesspool of stupidity.
A local group organized through the far-left organization says it intends to deliver a petition to U.S. Rep. Charlie Norwood's Augusta office at 1 p.m. today, calling for a week-kneed retreat from Iraq next year.
Actually, MoveOn.org's cut & paste petition says, "Congress must insist that America have an exit strategy from Iraq. We need a timeline that starts now and gets us out of Iraq in 2006."
Plans to reduce troop strength after Iraq's elections have already been underway (though our military leaders have to this point resisted ignorant demands that they announce a departure date). When those withdrawals eventually begin, these pathetic petitioners can claim they frightened Congress into buckling under, just like Hamas "forced" Israel to leave the West Bank.
This could be a great new strategy. Let's all pick a parade and jump in front of it, then declare we're drum majors. Let's see: I demand that Columbia County close down Evans Middle School. In fact, I want them out by next summer. (Yes, I know they're already building a new school and plan to be out in June; but when they leave, I can say it's really because I told them to.)
These MoveOn.org folks aren't going to get the last-helicopter-off-the-roof-of-the-embassy retreat that ended Vietnam. And they aren't going to get their wish that our military leaders announce, "Hey, terrorists; if you can hold out until, say, Sept. 6, 2006, we'll fold our tents, fuel our humvees and drive into the sunset. Then it's all yours."
If they did, the terrorists would do three things: Stockpile their ammunition; then, attack us on Sept. 5 so they could claim they'd chased us away; finally, renew their attacks on Iraq's elected leadership in an attempt to undo the freedom from tyranny our soldiers have died to purchase.
Then the followers of MoveOn.org -who continue to sulk because their hero, the traitor who called American soldiers "terrorists" just a few months after losing the 2004 presidential election -could declare victory, proclaiming the world a safer place.
I just hope the MoveOn.org turnout today is at least as underwhelming as it was a month ago, when political wanderer Sam Booher of Martinez (who once ran for Columbia County commission as a Republican) was part of a protest at Augusta Common over Medicare changes.
The media was far too gentle in pointing out just 19 people showed up for that demonstration. And the reporter was far too restrained by not laughing out loud when the spokesman for liberal U.S. Rep. John Barrow claimed that the rag-tag group proved "the power of the Internet."
A couple of weeks ago, Charlie Norwood and I had a good talk after I wrote that it's OK for him to step down to protect his health, and that he doesn't need to sacrifice his well-being to serve in Congress. He assured me he's feeling much better since his recent surgery, and intends to keep fighting for conservative principles in Washington.
Good for him. I hope he sticks around - and I wish it could last as long as MoveOn.org and its local saps keep proving the power of bad ideas over weak minds.
(Barry L. Paschal is publisher of The Columbia County News-Times. E-mail comments to email@example.com.)
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