Friday, June 20, 2003

RECENTLY, a number of senators who are usually clean and sober suggested that American troops should be inserted to separate the Israelis and Palestinians.

That just may be the worst idea raised by any Americans since our public-housing authorities proposed building high-rise ghettoes for the poor. All men and women of common sense and conscience should resist sending our over-stretched forces on a hopeless mission that would butcher our soldiers for nothing...

Let's be straight: There is no peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and there will be nothing beyond brief truces until the Arab terrorist organizations are destroyed - and until Israel dismantles its most offensive settlements in the West Bank and Gaza...

But American troops, if dispatched to the West Bank and Gaza, would only separate those who already want peace, while providing the hardliners among the Arabs with a fresh and galvanizing provocation. Our soldiers would be a magnet for every terrorist between Marrakech and Manila.

The best way to promote peace isn't to create a shooting gallery featuring G.I. Joe. It's to hunt down and kill every single terrorist. The terrorists, not the average Ari or Ahmed, are the problem. They want every Jew dead, and then they want the power to impose their perverted religious views on the rest of the Palestinians.

If you want to make peace, you must make it over their corpses...

The fact is that we have a very small military for our global obligations. The Army in which I served - during the Cold War - had 18 divisions, plus numerous independent brigades and separate regiments. Frankly, we didn't have much to do but wait and watch the Russians get drunk across the thousand-mile fence that divided yesterEurope.

Today's Army consists of 10 divisions. Half of those are committed to Iraq. More forces serve in the Balkans, Afghanistan, Korea and, in smaller numbers, in dozens of other countries. The Army's strategic reserve here at home is just about large enough to execute a Saturday night raid on a mid-size whorehouse.

For the missions we already face, we need an Army of at least 12 divisions. But the Army won't get those additional forces. Stymied in his attempt to chop several divisions from our already-lean ground forces, Defense Secretary Don Rumsfeld now proposes to transfer a quarter of a million military jobs to the private sector as a gift to big business.

I promise you: None of our soldiers wants FedEx delivering the ammunition during a firefight, which is essentially what Rummy's scheme proposes. It's a low-down shell game, designed to cheat our soldiers and our citizens.

Well - I don't know if it is designed to cheat the soldiers and citizens, but that would seem to be the effect.

A great read. Find it all here.

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