Defend the Defenders

Josh in the comments section of a prior post insists on quoting the repeatedly discredited Juan Cole’s claim that those who advocate going to war are hypocrites unless they are willing personally to go and fight.

As I said in the comments, I believe in fighting crime, but don’t join the police. And I believe in fighting fired, but I don’t join the fire department. Josh responded:

oh, and you don’t think that imminent fires or rampant street crime is the greatest threat to the united states and freedom in general. that’s why i’m not calling you a chickenshit for not joining the fucking FIRE DEPARTMENT.

Ignoring the fact that Josh is getting too overwrought to engage in respectful discussion, I would note that if there were no police or fire departments, fire and street crime would be existential threats to our way of life. The reason why neither Iraq nor any other country is an exsitential threat to us is because we periodically fight wars BEFORE they get there. As Wolfwowitz said “we cannot wait to act until the threat is imminent. The notion that we can do so assumes that we will know when the threat is imminent.”

Josh and his ilk do not think the US can or should be the world’s police force. Perhaps they are right, but note the metaphor.

More recently, Josh posted a link to a site for sending whitefeathers to Jonah Goldberg. But, Jonah notes:

The reference is to WWI when women would give young men not in uniform feathers to shame them into enlisting. It’s a clever bit of web-bullying I suppose. But the analogy is stupid. Those women supported the war. The people reprising the role of WWI prim ladies on the homefront do not.

Perhaps Josh is on the verge of changing is mind and supporting the war. He does say:

go to iraq. sign up right now. you’re still young enough. i will support your actions utterly. i will help raise money so you have decent supplies and armor in your outfit. i’ll put a ‘support the troops’ bumper sticker on my car, proudly, and i will sing the praises of the men in iraq because THEY ARE MY FRIENDS who CHOSE TO RISK THEIR LIVES FOR WHAT THEY BELIEVE IN.

I appreciate that he would extend me this honor. But it is telling that he refuses to extend the same honor to our fellow citizens who are already doing so.

I just learned that a junior high school classmate of mine who joined the Marines and fought in both Gulf wars is about to stand trial for the murder of two Iraqis he thought were about to attack him. If conviced he may be subject to the death penalty. His mother is raising money for his defense at DefendTheDefenders. The website is down because it has exceeded its bandwidth but you can find out more details here.

I’ve donated to the fund and so has my brother. I don’t know whether Josh will or whether he is simply blathering. Anyone who wished to defend the defenders can Paypal funds to merriko AT


2 Responses to Defend the Defenders

  1. hey alex says:

    nah. i’d support you because you were doing something you didn’t need to do but did anyway because you believed in it.

    i suspect that you wouldn’t go over there and torture people.

    i don’t know your friend. would he?

    my challenge remains; you have not answered my question. why are the lives of the sudanese and the shiites more valuable than the lives of american poor?

  2. R Doyle says:

    >The reason why neither Iraq nor any other country
    >is an exsitential threat to us is because we
    >periodically fight wars BEFORE they get there. As
    >Wolfwowitz said “we cannot wait to act until the
    >threat is imminent. The notion that we can do so
    >assumes that we will know when the threat is

    Why don’t we throw people in jail before they commit crimes? We should be doing just that, using the same “pre-emptive” logic. We’ll just have to change that silly, liberal bill of rights guaranteeing due process. Or better yet, change the definition of due process. When someone is about to rob a bank, give ’em 5-10 years; how about life in prison or death for someone who may commit first degree murder? Pretty soon, we’ll have no crime, right? I’m looking forward to a bright future, protected by the Pentagon’s crystal ball, and the police’s crack team of crime psychics.

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