Monday, September 14, 2009

Germans Near War

Since I'm having fun at the expense of the Germans today (see previous post), here's an article from the Economist about Germans and Afghanistan.

The Germans carefully inserted themselves in Afghanistan in a way that would make them feel good about their contribution to the defense of the West and be helpful to their American allies, while at the same time being in no danger whatsoever. Alas, the Taliban aren't playing according to the rules and when a German commander recenly felt himself threatened he called in the American airforce. Lots of people got killed, not all of them combatants, according to the partially sanitized report in the Economist.

The initial official German response was dishonest, and at home there's a growing constituency for getting out.

Two important differences between Israelis and other Westerners is that we've got to be more careful in the way we wage our wars, and we can't get out.


Victor said...

Yaacov, how many NATO airstrikes have there been now where 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 people are killed, where first NATO says they were all Taliban and then we are told they were mostly civilians?

Do you remember - of course you do - how in Lebanon and in Gaza the media talked up the *possibility* of a "mass casualty event" that would force Israel to end the war?

Do you remember - we all do - what that number was? About 50-100. Anything in that range, whether civilians or combatants (who really knows).

That's the margin Israel operates in. One bomb veers 20 meters to the right and Israel is dragged to sue for peace. Unacceptable casualties, we're told. Unacceptable.


According to the same calculus, NATO should have ended the war years ago! Every single WEEK there is a errant, mass casualty bombing in the 50-100 range. Sure, there is growing opposition back home, but because of NATO casualties, not Afghan deaths.

Ibrahim Ibn Yusuf said...


It's a minor point, but Israel is not considered the West -- not at least by its PM. See, for instance this statement from Netanyahu: "Alcohol is a national plague. In terms of alcohol and violence levels, we are low compared to the West, but we're rising... Alcohol is a major factor in causing violence."


The world understands that Afghanistan is a real war, not a toy war like Gaza. Casualties are more acceptable in real wars.

Believe me, there are no Americans willing to go to Afghanistan to see the war with their own eyes. By contrast, during the Gaza op a war tourism industry flourished whereby Jews flocked to Sderot to enjoy themselves watching the carnage live. That gives you an idea of the "danger" Israel faced. In that context, 400 dead children are unacceptable.

Victor said...

In that context, one has to wonder why Hamas would smuggle thousands of rockets and mortars into Gaza to launch, unprovoked, at Israeli communities.

Speaking of toy wars, I actually don't think the War in Afghanistan was perceived as a real war, until recently. I certainly remember Afghanistan being called "star wars", the "game boy war", etc. The fun ends once you have to restock bodybags.

Finally, your self-serving concern for children is disgusting. You rape the memory of innocents, smearing their blood for cheap parlor points, and do so with sadistic satisfaction. Can you name one of these children that you so anguish over, without Google, you sick piece of dirt? It's just numbers to you; liters of blood spilled for your pleasure. Just a game to you, this war, your hobby, to play word games with others' misery.

You're a disgusting person, in addition to a shameless liar. You need to close your eyes and understand how low you've sunk, how truly repugnant and revolting you are to be peddling the death of children you never once cared in the least for, until their blood served to enrich your recreational amusement.