Sunday, October 29, 2006

Ledeen In favor of Military Confrontation With Iran and Syria

1. "But one thing I do know: I would insist that my soldiers have the right of "hot pursuit" into Iran and Syria, and I would order my armed forces to attack the terrorist training camps in those countries. And I'm quite sure I'd go after the terrorist training camps in Pakistan, too. It seems the leader of the cell planning to blow up tunnels between New Jersey and Manhattan was headed for such a facility.

We can't have that.

[me: okay, so that was not an endorsement of attacking Iran, Syria and Pakistan?]

2. "It was depressing to read Thursday night's press conference with Steve Hadley and Condi Rice, because it was almost all about process, and not about war....

There are harsh parameters on this moment, which is an opportunity waiting to be seized. In another week or so the "international community" (the appeasers and "stability" mavens) will force Israel to stop....

But we have not heard anything about "seizing the moment." We hear lawyer talk and diplotalk, surrender talk and appeasement talk, and there is no action whatsoever. Is this not the time to go after the terrorist training camps in Syria and Iran? What in the world are we waiting for?

And finally, if we dither through this one, the next one will be worse. Maybe much worse. It's not going away. Stability is a mirage. Chamberlain had a choice between dishonor and war. He chose dishonor and got war anyway. You too, Mr. President. It's the way it works."

[me: okay, so that was not an endorsement of attacking Iran and Syria?]

3. "We need to sustain our game face, we must keep our fangs bared, we must remind them daily that we Americans are in a rage, and we will not rest until we have avenged our dead, we will not be sated until we have had the blood of every miserable little tyrant in the Middle East, until every leader of every cell of the terror network is dead or locked securely away, and every last drooling anti-Semitic and anti-American mullah, imam, sheikh, and ayatollah is either singing the praises of the United States of America, or pumping gasoline, for a dime a gallon, on an American military base near the Arctic Circle.

If we send in the United Nations, and turn over the construction of civil society to the NGOs, we're losers. Remember what the greatest generation of Americans did at the end of World War II: we occupied the enemy countries, and we imposed democracy on them, to their and our enduring benefit....

Don't kid yourself. We can still blow this thing, big-time. Every few days we show alarming signs of being "reasonable," and "evenhanded," apparently because somebody forgot that that's what got us into this mess in the first place. We must be imperious, ruthless, and relentless. No compromise with evil; we want total surrender. Once the ink's dry on the surrender documents, then we can start thinking about the best way to build theme parks in underground-tunnel networks.

Back at the beginning of our war, when I insisted that this was going to be a vast revolutionary war, and that we would transform the entire Middle East, few were inclined to agree. Now it is just barely over the horizon, but the tyrants, who are always looking as far ahead as they can, can already see it, and they are very frightened. The latest word from Tehran is that the mullahs are afraid that they will have the same destiny as the Taliban.

And why not? They even look the same.

[me: hmmm, sure sounded like a call to action. What was the fate of the Taliban again? Tehran should get what treatment in kind?]

4. "Despite all the easy talk about a new kind of terrorism, and a new kind of war, the models for what we have experienced and what we must do are quite old. The terrorists adopted the methods of the 1940s — kamikazes — with a bit of 1950s brainwashing added to produce a number of Manchurian Candidates. We dealt with the original kamikazes by improving our defenses so as to kill them before they hit us, and by destroying the country that launched them. We have to do that again.

Unless you have been gulled by the leaks from the misnamed intelligence community, you know that the terrorists represent the long arm of evil regimes. We therefore have a dual task: Kill the terrorists, and destroy the regimes that provide them with the critical infrastructure — training, safe havens, travel documents, technology, and all the rest — they need to operate."

5. It would be nice if someone in a position of power noted that the Iranians have committed an act of war on a NATO country, and that the other members of the alliance can be obliged to join in common action against the aggressor if the relevant terms of the treaty are invoked, as they should be. That should be the first move, showing the Iranians that the West is united and determined to act. It should be accompanied by the appearance of some vessels from what is left of Her Majesty's Navy, buttressing our own warships and--shhhh!--the French carrier now in the area. If we have actionable intelligence from the recent wave of defectors/prisoners, we should step up the campaign against Iranian officials and agents in Iraq. And we should undertake the legitimate self-defense to which we are entitled, by moving against the terrorist training camps, and the improvised explosive device assembly lines and manufacturing sites inside the Islamic Republic.

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