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Thursday, July 20, 2006

More On Israel's Disproportionate Response

Hugh Hewitt wrote this excellent essay on the liberal claim that Israel has responded to Hezbollah terrorism disproportionately. Israel's comparative population would mean that

Israel is a nation of 7 million people, with an active-duty military of approximately 200,000. America is home to approximately 300 million people, with a standing military of 1.4 million.
Thus, speaking proportionately, America's devastating loss of 3,000 on 9/11 would be the same as Israel's loss of approximately 70 of its civilians. Speaking proportionately, Hezbollah's ambush would have killed more than 470 and kidnapped 10. What would America do in response to such an attack in its civilian and military populations if mounted from Mexico or Canada?


And besides the instigating event, he explained:

One fourth of Israel has been confined to bomb shelters since Hezbollah began this war. And Israel is supposed to go only so far but not far enough to stop the rockets that have killed dozens of civilians?

Hezbollah has sophisticated weaponry as well, lethal enough to cripple an Israeli ship and kill four of its sailors, but Israel is supposed to allow an enemy sworn to its utter destruction to enjoy a safe haven within a marathoner's distance of its third largest city?

My comment to his post was:

Isn't the argument about proportionality merely the continued method of applying local criminal law concepts to national security issues? We heard the leading Democrats in the last election talk about bringing Bin Laden to trial, we have the Hamdan decision applying ciminal law concepts to terrorists. The whole of human action deserves the response of negligence law?
Democrats are applying their concept of criminal law proportionality to Israel. Remember Dukakis? He would not immediately kill the intruder who raped and killed his wife. That would be wrong, he said. That debate answer he gave embodies the liberal response to acts of war whether they are on an individual or global level. There may be some skewed feeling of moral superiority.

I prefer being safe. And so does Israel.

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