Terrorists Win Today


PDA






goblue
March 14, 2004, 05:22 PM
First off, let me say that I do not follow Spanish politics closely, so my observation here may be overly simplistic. But as I am watching the results of today’s elections in Spain, I cannot help but to think that the terrorists (be it Al Qaeda or ETA) have won a huge victory today.

It appears that Spain’s current ruling party, the Popular Party, and its Prime Minister, Jose Anznar just got a huge vote of no confidence. Early election results show that the Socialist Party has made unexpected gains in today’s election. Just 2 or 3 days ago, polls showed Popular Party would retain the prime-ministership, but the terrorist bombings March 11 changed the sentiment of a lot of people and mobilized many more people to the polls. Many more people voted to throw the Popular Party out than expected, as they blamed Anznar’s support of the war in Iraq and Bush as the primary reason that Al Qaeda terrorists targeted Madrid. Even if it turns out to be domestic terrorism from the separatist group ETA, many Spaniards are angry at the Popular Party’s hard-line stand against granting autonomy to the Basque and Cataloian regions and are angry at the fact that the Anznar government initially blamed ETA for the bombings.

It is quite apparent that the terrorist bombing has changed this election and that the terrorists got what they wanted. I am not necessarily saying that the terrorists wanted the Socialist Party, but they wanted to impact the elections and that is exactly what happened. The Socialist Party candidate has said that if he wins, he will pull troops out of Iraq and that the country’s support for the war in Iraq will change. Granted, the vast majority of Spaniards did not support the war in the first place, but still it seemed until just yesterday that the Popular Party would retain prime-ministership.

I do not know where Spain will go in its support of the US and the international war on terrorism, but it seems to me that Spain, through today’s elections, has stated that it wants to distance itself from the Coalition and in doing so hopes to not draw the attention of Muslim terrorists thereby avoiding another attack. No doubt about it, but today’s elections will weaken the international coalition, give anti-Bush people stateside more ammo to call for an immediate withdraw from Iraq, and strengthen terrorist resolve globally. Seeing the Madrid bombings as a victory, I now fear that terrorists may try to influence other elections, even our own, through very similar tactics as we saw in Madrid last week.

If you enjoyed reading about "Terrorists Win Today" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
Sean Smith
March 14, 2004, 05:58 PM
I suspect that the Socialist victory probably had more to do with long-developing political trends in Spain than the terrorist attack. Maybe I'm being idealistic, but I don't think the Spaniards are that cowardly. Remember, there were huge anti-terrorist demonstrations. As in, "F--- the terrorists!" type demonstrations.

Still, it is very troubling, because it creates the appearance that a terrorist attack altered the course of a national election. To wit:

-Polls say one thing.
-Attacks happen.
-Election result opposite of poll result.

And, of course, the Socialist foreign policy coincides with the desires of Al-Qaeda: get the "infidels" out of Iraq. Even if Al-Qaeda didn't do the attack, they would be happy with the election outcome, and be extremely encouraged by how it was seemingly caused by a single terrorist attack.

In fact, if I was a terrorist, in any country, I'd be extremely encouraged by what happened.

TBeck
March 14, 2004, 06:03 PM
I hope the Spanish people are satisfied with what they bought. From now on they can be sure there will be more bombings each time some Islamist wants to advance an agenda. Muslims have wanted to rule Spain since the sixteenth century. It looks like they may get their wish.

The only way you can appease an enemy who wants you dead is to DIE!!!:banghead:

M67
March 14, 2004, 06:59 PM
I think you're wrong.

I don't think Spaniards voted socialist because of this terrorist attack, and certainly not because they disagreed with the outgoing cabinet's hard line against ETA. Extremely few people in Spain, and that includes the Basque region, support those terrorists.

I believe a lot of people suspect Aznar and his cabinet of lying to them. I'm not saying he did, I don't know. But the suspicion is that he kept insisting that ETA was behind the bombings even though he knew differently, because he thought that would increase his chances in the election, as opposed to if Moslem terrorists did it.

I cant't think of many countries where a head of government is re-elected if the voters believe he has lied to them.

I actually think the Spaniards are less likely to be swayed by a terrorist action than Americans are.

It could simply be that the 43% who voted socialist, were unhappy with Aznar before this happened and had already decided to vote for the opposition. If so, they voted without letting the terrorists influence on their decision.

SIC TRANSIT GLORIA MUNDI
March 14, 2004, 07:25 PM
MADRID, Spain - Voters ousted Spain’s ruling party in elections Sunday, with many saying they were shaken by bombings in Madrid and furious with the government for backing the Iraq war and making their country a target for al-Qaida.

Official results showed the Socialists leading the ruling center-right Popular Party by 42.7 percent to 37.7 percent with 96 percent of votes counted. That would give the Socialists 164 seats in parliament compared with the Popular Party’s 148, but short of an absolute majority of 176. The Popular Party had 183 seats in the outgoing legislature.

advertisement

"According to the available data, the Socialist Party has won the general election. It is a clear victory,” said Jose Blanco, the party’s campaign manager.

The Popular Party conceded defeat to Socialist leader Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who will take over from outgoing Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar, a staunch supporter of the U.S.-led war in Iraq that most Spaniards opposed.

“My most immediate priority is to beat all forms of terrorism,” said Zapatero, asking for a minute’s silence in honor of the 200 people killed in the bombings on four packed commuter trains.

Angry electorate
Turnout was high at 76 percent. Many voters said Thursday’s bombings was a decisive factor, along with the government’s much-criticized handling of the initial investigation.

“The Popular Party has made me lose faith in politics,” said Juan Rigola, 23, a biologist in Barcelona. “It deserves to lose and to see the Spanish people turn against them.”

The electorate of 34.5 million included about 1.9 million mostly young voters added to the rolls since the 2000 general election.

Until the bombing, the conservative Popular Party was projected by most polls to beat the Socialists, although perhaps without retaining their majority in the 350-seat Congress of Deputies.

But the disaster, which the government initially blamed on the Basque separatist group ETA, threw the election wide open. The attack was followed by emotional rallies across the country.

In Washington, Secretary of State Colin Powell, asked what the United States knows about who might be responsible, told "Fox News Sunday", “Essentially what the Spanish know, and that is that they can’t yet place responsibility.”


March 14: National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice says it’s too early to determine who was behind the attacks in Spain.
Meet the Press




Powell also told ABC's "This Week", “I don’t think the case has been made that this will cause Spain to step back from the war on terrorism."

President Bush’s national security adviser agreed.

“The events in Spain are just more evidence of the lengths to which these killers will go to try and intimidate free people,” Condoleezza Rice said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Critics blast handling of probe
Critics accused the government, which had trumpeted its crackdown on ETA, of manipulating the investigation for political gain. That struck a chord with voters.

“I didn’t intend to vote, but changed my mind,” said Javi Martin, 30, who works for a TV station in Madrid. “And not because of the attacks, but because of the responsibility of the Popular Party. They gave out information drop by drop. It would have benefited them if it were ETA.”

Some voters were angry at outgoing Prime Minister Aznar, accusing him of making Spain a target for Islamic extremists because of his support for the Iraq war, despite the opposition of most Spaniards. Aznar sent 1,300 Spanish troops to Iraq after the conflict and 11 have died.

“I wasn’t planning to vote, but I am here today because the Popular Party is responsible for murders here and in Iraq,” said Ernesto Sanchez-Gey, 48, who voted in Barcelona.

Other voters, however, expressed support for the ruling party precisely because it endorsed the Iraq war, and for its crackdown on ETA.

Mari Carmen Pinadero Martinez, 58, a housewife, said she “voted to help the government end terrorism” as she cast her ballot near the downtown Atocha railway station where trains were bombed.

In El Pozo northeast of Madrid, site of one of the four blasts, a ruined train car was in clear view of the polling station as were flowers for the victims, signs stating “Paz” (Peace) and dozens of lit candles.

Some of the voters, teary-eyed, held onto relatives and friends for support.

Five people arrested
The Interior Ministry has announced five arrests in the bombing, including three Moroccans, and discovery of a videotape in which a man speaking Arabic says Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaida network claimed responsibility for the attack.

In Morocco, authorities said one of the five detainees had been under surveillance for months and was suspected of ties to Islamic radicalism.

On Sunday, a Basque-language daily published a statement by ETA in which the group for a second time denied involvement in the attacks.

A handful of young protesters screamed “murderer” at Mariano Rajoy, the ruling party candidate for prime minister, as he cast his vote in an elementary school outside Madrid. “We did not want to go to war!” they shouted.

Rajoy declined to comment on the arrests or videotape. “These elections come at a time of great pain,” he said.

Emotions run high
As Aznar voted in Madrid, some bystanders cheered him while others shouted, “Manipulator!”

“All Signs Point to al-Qaida,” the country’s largest circulation newspaper, El Pais, said in a front-page banner headline Sunday.

RELATED STORY
Complete text of videotape statement




The videotape was recovered from a trash basket near a Madrid mosque after an Arabic-speaking man called a Madrid TV station to say it was there, Interior Minister Angel Acebes said.

The political campaign was bitter between Rajoy, 48, a veteran Cabinet minister under Aznar, and Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, 43, a lawyer, member of parliament and the Socialist party’s general-secretary.

Before the attacks, polls gave Rajoy’s party a 3-5 percentage point lead over the Socialists in the race for the 350-seat Congress of Deputies.

Aznar did not seek re-election, complying with a pledge to not seek a third four-year term.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report

Sounds to me like intimidation won. Spain just blinked. This Al-Qaeda success will encourage more of the same throughout Europe.

Mark Tyson
March 14, 2004, 07:30 PM
Terrorism is effective when it reinforces an already existing political movement. There was already opposition to Spanish foreign policy in Iraq before the bombings. I get the feeling that the new government will cut and run.

“I wasn’t planning to vote, but I am here today because the Popular Party is responsible for murders here and in Iraq,” said Ernesto Sanchez-Gey, 48, who voted in Barcelona.

Sean Smith
March 14, 2004, 07:34 PM
But the suspicion is that he kept insisting that ETA was behind the bombings even though he knew differently, because he thought that would increase his chances in the election, as opposed to if Moslem terrorists did it.

That seems backwards. If everybody is about equally anti-ETA, that isn't a discriminator in choosing a party... it is a wash. An ETA attack would help nobody, since everybody would agree on the response (more or less), since almost nobody there supports the ETA anyway. It would seem to make more sense that most Spaniards do think it is the ETA, and so the attack doesn't change their voting because they belive that either party is strongly opposed to ETA terrorism. This of course assumes that the attack would affect voting either way.

Many of the anti-terrorist demonstrators' actions would seem to support this (e.g. having "NO TO ETA" written on their heads).

On the other hand, if they thought Al-Qaeda did it, and the attack had a strong impact on how they voted, then more Spaniards would logically vote for the party with the strongest anti-Islamic-terrorism record... which would probably NOT be the Socialists.

Hmm... of course, if everybody is equally anti-terrorist, and it seemed like one party was buggering up the investigation based on general stupidity, then voting against that party would be logical. However, the obvious appearance of the Spaniards being intimidated into voting a certain way by the terrorist attack is extremely unfortunate, regardless.

I actually think the Spaniards are less likely to be swayed by a terrorist action than Americans are.

Based on what? Their inherent ethical superiority to Americans? Or the fact that only about 1/10th as many people got killed in this attack as were killed on 9/11? :confused:

The relative popularity of Kerry would seem to put the lie to that notion anyway, given his inconsistency on just that subject.

Malone LaVeigh
March 14, 2004, 07:46 PM
The Socialists ran on a platform of getting out of Iraq. In that, they reflected the desires of the vast majority of Spaniards. So it should come as no surprise to anyone if they pull out. That means the will of the Spanish people wins, not the terrorists.

glocksman
March 14, 2004, 07:51 PM
I believe a lot of people suspect Aznar and his cabinet of lying to them. I'm not saying he did, I don't know. But the suspicion is that he kept insisting that ETA was behind the bombings even though he knew differently, because he thought that would increase his chances in the election, as opposed to if Moslem terrorists did it.

From the feedback I've heard from Spaniards on another board that I post on, a lot of the anti-PP (Partido Popular) vote comes from Spain's involvment in the Iraq war. Over 80% of the Spanish people opposed the involvment, and terrorism aside, the PP was going to bear the brunt of Aznar's decision to get involved.

What the terror attacks may have done were to motivate some of the fence sitters to vote Socialist because of the clumsy way Aznar was trying to pin the blame on the ETA.

If our elections had been held 3 days after 9/11 and the Bush adminstration was clumsily trying to blame Iraq while the news was reporting increasing evidence that al-quaida did it with Saudi backing, how big a loss do you think he and the Republican party would have suffered?

The PP got caught blatantly trying to use the incident to manipulate public opinion and they got smacked in the teeth by the voters for doing so.

7.62FullMetalJacket
March 14, 2004, 07:57 PM
This is SICK. Is Spain filled with the progeny of Chamberlain? "Oh, please don't hurt us again, we will do what you want." Sounds like sKerry's campaign theme.

HunterGatherer
March 14, 2004, 08:04 PM
I believe a lot of people suspect Aznar and his cabinet of lying to them. I'm not saying he did, I don't know. But the suspicion is that he kept insisting that ETA was behind the bombings even though he knew differentlyThat would be accurate even for the liberals in this country.

Here is what we know. For at least as long as I have been politically aware (just over 3 decades), death-cult barbarians have been running suicide missions and murdering innocents.

The President(s) of the United States, Prime Minister Jose Anznar, and others may have lied about/misconstrued available info about various death-cult organizations.

So, faced with people who will actually attempt to hunt and kill the death-cult barbarians, the liberals will side with said death-cult barbarians out of a sense of outrage over being lied to, or perhaps mislead, or just... well... because.

That sounds like every liberal A$$____ I know.

Personally, I don't care anymore. I pity the fool that would come after me and mine, and if the liberal sheeple want to stretch their necks for the butcher's knife, so much the better. I hate the SOBs anyway, and Allah only knows the herd needs thinning. As far as I am concerned, the more of them that get whacked, the better. More food, water, air, space for me, and fewer welfare scumbags to support into the bargain.

:fire: :fire: :fire: :fire:

mountainclmbr
March 14, 2004, 08:10 PM
The terrorists and the socialists hate freedom. They both got what they wanted.

Iain
March 14, 2004, 08:13 PM
We should also remember that elections promises are one thing, fulfilling them is quite another. The socialist govt may find that pulling out of Iraq may have certain consequences for Spain's relationship with the US and Britain. Who knows, early days.

Malone LaVeigh
March 14, 2004, 08:13 PM
Iraq <--> Terrorism

S**t <--> Shinola

HunterGatherer
March 14, 2004, 08:14 PM
Gee Glocksman,

If your theory is correct, and the socialist swine wanted ETA to not get the blame, then why, oh why did every euro-socialist under the Sun - from the leftist news organizations, to our very own uber-socialist agricola - try to pin the blame on them? Every other word out of their mouths was "ETA tried this just a few weeks ago" or "It wouldn't be unlike ETA to do a thing like this" etc...?

Which is it?

Oh, I forgot. We are talking about liberals and socialists. It's not supposed to make any sense. :banghead: :banghead:

HunterGatherer
March 14, 2004, 08:18 PM
Yeah Malone, I kinda see your point. Supporting the world chaos that terrorism brings to the world is beneath even the contempt of kindly ol' unka Sodom. :scrutiny: :fire:

Iain
March 14, 2004, 08:23 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/3511180.stm

I suspect that this will annoy some of you (not that it doesn't annoy me)

quotes:

"There seemed to be a collective desire in the intelligence community not to accept that a new Islamist front might have been opened up in Western Europe."

"First, there is the issue of whether governments will change their policies to try to placate the bombers or whether they will continue as before."

"A third consideration is security and how far the citizenry will accept disruption of ordinary life."

HunterGatherer:

On the other thread the other day someone used a Dr Cox-ism 'If you hear the sound of hoofbeats then go ahead and think horses, not zebra'. Which is a fair point, imagine for instance that a large bomb was planted in London (and the Madrid bomb had not happened) we would would probably go ahead and think of our homegrown horses (the Real IRA) as well as the zebra (al-Quaeda)

Trouble is, I'm getting confused as to which are the horses and which are the zebra. I'm getting to the point where, despite my knowledge of ETA, my first thought on Thursday was al-Quaeda.

longeyes
March 14, 2004, 09:36 PM
A lot of Spaniards just "don't want any trouble." That's how I read it. I suspect they'll get all the trouble they can handle--and more.

Trigger
March 14, 2004, 10:00 PM
I don't check this part of the forum much but I had to after reading about the Spanish elections. It's unfortunate that the Socialists got in. If the terrorist act effected the elections as I suspect, they are a weak minded nation. In America we stand firm and remain convicted. To cower, run, and hide is pathic.

I hope I'm wrong but in todays world with terrorism reprisal should be a badge of honor and not turned into disgrace.

If Al Quada was involved and the indications so far support that, the Spaniards bowed to terrorist pressure and tossed out a government that was good for an evil one.

A sad state the world is in. I'm just proud to be an American.

longeyes
March 14, 2004, 10:37 PM
Trigger,

We are THAT close to emulating the Spaniards. Every liberal I know--and there are many, from my checkered past--thinks we're at fault for "sticking our noses where they don't belong" and letting Hitler II "steal" the '00 Election.

Sometimes civilizations just reach a crossroads. I think we're there.

Sean Smith
March 14, 2004, 10:41 PM
If we are considering the election's effect on terrorist movements in general, it really doesn't matter what the intent of the Spanish voters was in giving the party in power an upset.

What matters when considering the election's effect on terrorist movements is how the terrorists will interpret it. Since they consider the Spaniards (along with the rest of the halfway civilized world) despicable, they will make their interpretation in that light. They attacked a bunch of decadent, self-satisfied infidels before their election, and it caused them to panic and vote out the previously favored incumbents who had supported the anti-Muslim invasion of Iraq. Cause and effect. Better yet, positive reenforcement. The strategy is vindicated.

Of course, the flipside of that is that the terrorists consider it a positive moral good to hurt us even when it DOESN'T contribute to their immediate strategic aims. They aren't like a rational nation-state in that respect. After all, 9/11 sure didn't keep the U.S. out of the Middle East, and ejecting foreigners from the Arab world is a major goal of Al-Qaeda... not increasing their numbers. But Al-Qaeda thinks it was a success, even though it was really a strategic failure, because they attach a spiritual and moral value to killing us above and beyond any strategic considerations. Being a martyr and sending infidels to hell is a positive moral good in and of itself, and Allah will sort everything out in the end anyway.

7.62FullMetalJacket
March 14, 2004, 10:56 PM
Well Said, Sean.

Malone LaVeigh
March 14, 2004, 11:03 PM
Yeah Malone, I kinda see your point. Supporting the world chaos that terrorism brings to the world is beneath even the contempt of kindly ol' unka Sodom. With all due respect, you missed my point. Our going into Iraq, and hence Spain's support, did nothing to combat terrorism a la Al Qaeda. In fact, is several respects, it helped make the world a less safe place. But that point would be obvious to any Spaniard today.

Sean: Then I suppose if you had been counseling the incumbent Spanish campaign, your advice would be to go with, "Yeah, we may have screwed up, but if you vote us out now, you'll be sending a bad message to the terrorists."

Hmm... just might work for Bush...

grampster
March 15, 2004, 12:48 AM
Quote:

"With all due respect, you missed my point. Our going
into Iraq, and hence Spain's support, did nothing to
combat terrorism a la Al Qaeda. In fact, is several
respects, it helped make the world a less safe place.
But that point would be obvious to any Spaniard today."

I keep getting frustrated by those on the
left who continually seem to not understand the long
view of things. You say the world is a less safe place, but
you never, ever put it into context. You say by invading Iraq
nothing was done to combat terrorism. Do you live in a vacuum? To continue
to turn ones back upon those that would kill you is foolish at the best.
Hussein supported terror and terrorists. The evidence is clear and
obvious to those who reasonably consider the facts and are able to accept it.

I submit we are engaged in the 3rd World War, the opening shot was
made decades ago and became self evident on Sept. 11, 2001.
It is a religious war, pitting certain sects of Islam and those
who disguise themselves as Islamist, but are megalomaniacal narcisists
against, well, the rest of the world. The trouble is a good deal of the
rest of the world doesn't seem able to cope with defining evil
and what is necessary to defeat it. Some can't seem to see
the forest for the trees and sit idly by criticising from the safety
of your armchair. I am continually reminded of the three monkeys
when I see the reaction of the left to evil deeds done by evil people.

What is so frustrating to me is the lack of solutions by the left in
response to acts of evil or terror. All I hear is talk, generalities and criticism.
Never any solutions. History seems to indicate quite
obviously that to submit to evil is to be guaranteed more of it. Despots
understand strength and power. The Middle Eastern culture has even a
better understanding of it than most others. To be weak invites terror.
Spain is weak in its resolve and would put its head in the sand as have other
European countries. They have paid the price for that and don't even
understand that they are despised for their weakness and subsequently preyed
upon for it.

The left is always braying that America's response to the threat that
Hussein posed was/is about oil. You are partly right, but sadly for all the
wrong reasons. Oil is the fluid that makes the world go round. Until
some free capitalist finds a viable alternative that is plentiful, has
easy access and stands to provide a lucrative profit, then oil is
king. Unless you are willing to give up your car, the lights and heat in
your house, food and your job and live under an abandoned viaduct
dressed in the skins of whatever critter you killed to eat,
then ya'll need to understand reality.

glocksman
March 15, 2004, 01:05 AM
Gee Glocksman,

If your theory is correct, and the socialist swine wanted ETA to not get the blame, then why, oh why did every euro-socialist under the Sun - from the leftist news organizations, to our very own uber-socialist agricola - try to pin the blame on them? Every other word out of their mouths was "ETA tried this just a few weeks ago" or "It wouldn't be unlike ETA to do a thing like this" etc...?

Could it be that those were merely guesses by people who weren't in a position to know the facts, whereas the Spanish .gov was aware of the facts that contraindicated the ETA accusation and yet continued to shout 'ETA'?

Nah, why blame it on ignorance and speculation when we can blame the World Leftist Conspiracy™ :rolleyes:

fallingblock
March 15, 2004, 01:38 AM
"But that point would be obvious to any Spaniard today."
************************************************************

THAT point is that doing the right thing isn't always popular;) .

Still, I'm glad the Spanish government did the right thing at the time.:)

The Socialists will no doubt learn their lessons in time, and deal with the islamofanatics forcefully. If not, then they can be voted out as well.

LAR-15
March 15, 2004, 01:39 AM
So what do the Socialists plan to do about Al-queda?

Have a sit down pot luck dinner with them?

Go on Dr. Phil with them and sort it out?

Malone LaVeigh
March 15, 2004, 03:25 AM
I keep getting frustrated by those on the
left who continually seem to not understand the long
view of things. You say the world is a less safe place, but
you never, ever put it into context.... I would submit that those who think a war will solve the problem are taking the short view. The problems we have in that part of the world have deep roots, many of which we planted ourselves. The problem is people who have been dispossessed by outside forces have long memories. Ask any southerner.

And BTW, putting "those on the left" and "you" in the same paragraph demonstrates a lack of understanding of my position.

I submit we are engaged in the 3rd World War, the opening shot was
made decades ago I submit it may make you feel better to see things in black and white, but they're actually a lot more complex.

What is so frustrating to me is the lack of solutions by the left in
response to acts of evil or terror. All I hear is talk, generalities and criticism.
Never any solutions. I don't know about you, but a lot of people who think there aren't any other solutions being offered wouldn't recognize any solution that didn't involve "an eye for an eye." Going to war and kicking a little butt might make you feel better in the short run, but there just might be a better solution. One that doesn't involve turning our country into something we wouldn't want to have for ourselves.

THAT point is that doing the right thing isn't always popular The "right thing" being whatever fallingblock agrees with... ;) (right back at 'ya)

So what do the Socialists plan to do about Al-queda? A little history here. Spain has been dealing with terrorists since before most of us were born. The worst phalangist repression didn't stop it. Economic development in the recent years has had a lot more success. Maybe they know more than we do about that. Why don't we wait and see what they do instead of making catty remarks?

fallingblock
March 15, 2004, 04:05 AM
"The "right thing" being whatever fallingblock agrees with... (right back at 'ya)"
************************************************************

Aw, Malone.....that's no fun!:D

The 'right thing' being the Spanish support for the war in Iraq.;)

Any Spaniard who believes they can disassociate that and the larger effort against terrorism in general is deluding themselves....as are a lot of anti-war Americans.



************************************************************
"A little history here. Spain has been dealing with terrorists since before most of us were born. The worst phalangist repression didn't stop it. Economic development in the recent years has had a lot more success."
************************************************************


Irrelevant history, perhaps?

ETA is not global in nature, not even national.... nor is it based in a fundamentalist religious movement.

************************************************************
"Maybe they know more than we do about that. Why don't we wait and see what they do instead of making catty remarks?"
************************************************************


More about dealing with ETA? Perhaps, but they are still a problem, although compared to islamofanatics, a minor one.:(

But, as I wrote above, if the Socialists don't catch on, and get with the program, they can be voted out.

Waiting to see what they do before complaining is indeed a good plan.:)

Sean Smith
March 15, 2004, 09:03 AM
Sean: Then I suppose if you had been counseling the incumbent Spanish campaign, your advice would be to go with, "Yeah, we may have screwed up, but if you vote us out now, you'll be sending a bad message to the terrorists."

Not necessarily. I'm just pointing out the obvious consequences of what happened.

7.62FullMetalJacket
March 15, 2004, 09:46 AM
New Spanish Leader Vows Iraq Pullout
Monday, March 15, 2004

MADRID, Spain — Spain's new Socialist leader Monday vowed to bring home the 1,300 Spanish troops now in Iraq by June 30.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,114185,00.html

Baba Louie
March 15, 2004, 09:53 AM
Going to war and kicking a little butt might make you feel better in the short run, but there just might be a better solution. One that doesn't involve turning our country into something we wouldn't want to have for ourselves. And what "better solution" are you proposing?
Like turning our country into one that decided "What if you had a war, and no one (from our side) showed up?"

They call that losing the war and then we all get to become Islamo-Socialists with a Gov't run by a group of Mulla's who will tell us what to think and when to think it? 1.6 billion followers of Islam coerced by a few thousand bomb-weilding fanatics can't be wrong, now can they?

Yes, we can just go peacefully into the night and all say Insha'Allah and give up the Republican experiment, eventually eliminating those few who insist on concepts of liberty and freedom for all. And I'm sure the majority of people in the world will do so, gladly, in the name of personal and societal safety... "See, if we just do what they say and want, they'll leave us alone. It worked for the Spanish, the North Africans, the middle Eastern and Indonesioans. It'll work here, just give it a chance. They promised they'll stop killing us if we just go along peacefully."

Sell that concept to the Israelis. Oops, there's a problem. They ain't buying into that for some obscure reason, now are they? They've BTDT and I don't think they liked the outcome.

So getting down to realizing that we ARE in a Religious War, pitting the newest branch of Allah/God of Moses, Abraham and Christ against the oldest branch of the same with the USA (being either mostly Christian or even worse from an Islamic POV...non-religious) standing in between the two, knowing what we know from the past few centuries actions...

What exactly DO you propose? What WILL you fight for? Safety or Freedom (whatever that is nowadays)? The Spanish voters chose safety. Maybe they chose wisely.

Here's the rub. If it worked in Spain, do you think anyone will apply that lesson here come this summer/fall to send a message to the sensible American voters in November? Betcha a dollar they do.

bountyhunter
March 15, 2004, 05:55 PM
It appears that Spain’s current ruling party, the Popular Party, and its Prime Minister, Jose Anznar just got a huge vote of no confidence. Early election results show that the Socialist Party has made unexpected gains in today’s election. Just 2 or 3 days ago, polls showed Popular Party would retain the prime-ministership, but the terrorist bombings March 11 changed the sentiment of a lot of people and mobilized many more people to the polls.

Your analysis is 100% accurate. The party which chose to follow GWB lockstep has incurred retaliation from Al Qaeda, and the citizens of Spain are furious that their leader has made them the subject of a terrorist war based on the fool's errand of Iraq. As most voter's do, they vented their fury on the incumbent party who made the stupid decisions with the ballot box.

bountyhunter
March 15, 2004, 05:57 PM
It is quite apparent that the terrorist bombing has changed this election and that the terrorists got what they wanted. I think it would be more accurate to say that the terrorists followed their floor plan which they have had all along: destabilize governments in countries which oppose them. OBL has made his "manifesto" public knowledge, so this is old news.

One point overlooked in the discussion is that the reason terrorism is such a popular method of getting regime change or forcing government capitulation is because it has always worked. When Ghandi (who was completely anti violence) went on hunger strikes in prison, his "pleas for change" were backed up by thousands of Indians rioting. In the 60's in the US, our government grew a conscience about racial inequality about the same time many major cities were burned to the ground by race riots. In Northern Ireland, the British swore they would never sit at the negotiating table with the "political" arm of the IRA (Senn Fein).... but last year, they did just that. Opponents said the IRA bombed them to the table, and I am not sure I could prove that position wrong. The one I remember most clearly growing up in the 60's was when we complained that 18 year olds couldn't vote, but we had to fight in the war..... then came the Weathermen, the Students For a Democratic Society, and the like where "nice" kids picked up AK's and started robbing banks and killing police.... and all of a sudden there was momentum for a law change and 18 year olds could vote.

Funny thing about violence.... it always seems to get governments to move when talking doesn't. Not sure that's a good thing, but it is a fact.

goblue
March 15, 2004, 06:02 PM
I think it would be more accurate to say that the terrorists followed their floor plan which they have had all along: destabilize governments in countries which oppose them. OBL has made his "manifesto" public knowledge, so this is old news.

The terrorists are more interestred in detabilizing governments that represent a threat to their ideals. Spain, the US, and any other non-fundamentalist Islamic government is a target for terrorists.

Hkmp5sd
March 15, 2004, 06:07 PM
It's merely the standard "blame everyone but the guilty" mindset many people seem to have these days. It's like blaming 9/11 on the US's oppression of the arab nations. Spain is blaming the support of the US as the cause of the attack while completely ignoring the group of terrorists that killed a few hundred of their citizens. If they pull the support, they can then stick their heads back in the sand and hope "terrorism" moves on to someone elses country. They don't realize that by giving in to the terrorists, they are opening themselves up to more attacks once the terrorists need/want Spain to do something.

Mark Tyson
March 15, 2004, 06:09 PM
A little history here. Spain has been dealing with terrorists since before most of us were born. The worst phalangist repression didn't stop it. Economic development in the recent years has had a lot more success. Maybe they know more than we do about that.

These are really totally different groups and ideologies you're comparing, one nationalist with pseudo Marxist trappings, and one religious. Opposition to the war did not save Turkey, Morocco or Australia's citizens from the wrath of the terrorists, and this act will not(in my view) save the Spanish. Australia's citizens were targeted because they supported the action in East Timor, where Indonesians had been committing horrible atrocities against the Christian minority for decades. This is the same war that's been going on since 632 and no concessions are going to satisfy our enemies. We can negotiate with terrorists if their demands are tangible and realistic(whether we should is another matter). However, delusional adherents to an militant version of Islam are not going to be reasoned with. Any concessions will only encourage them. This is evident from UBL's own words.

"Shades Black and White"

Yes, it's hard not to see these enemies in terms of black and white. In Iraq a vicious and evil dictator has been removed, one guilty of wars of aggression and horrendous violations of human rights. In Afghanistan they were annihilating music art and culture, burying homosexuals alive, shooting women for adultery, and making Jews and Hindus wear special markings on their clothing.

Yes, the US supported Iraq in the past. This role(I feel) has been exaggerated a little, and European powers as well as the USSR did the same. But this would seem to make it our responsibiilty to correct the sins of the past, not ignore the problem and let that wound fester for eternity so our friends can conduct business deals with the Hussien regime.

In Afghanistan we also made a horrible mess in the cold war, and we walked away at the end of it. We're responsible for that too, and we've destroyed the horribly repressive government that came to power. The security situation is still hairy, no doubt about it, and that will take time to fix. But now there is hope, in both those countries, something that didn't exist not to long ago.

TaurusCIA
March 15, 2004, 06:17 PM
Uh, no! They aren't furious they are frightened. Everyone will be the subject of terrorism unless they bow down to terrorists when they come knocking.

Let's all bury our collective heads in the sand now and maybe they won't notice us groveling over here in the dirt.

That whole statement is just sad. The only reason the pacifist countries haven't been attacked is that they serve a purpose for the attackers. Look back to Hitler and the neutral countries that secretly supported him out of fear &....profit.

XLMiguel
March 15, 2004, 07:41 PM
Well, the Spanish have shown their [lack of] mettle, even though no one is yet sure of who is responsible, ETA, Al Q, Indo-Morrocan pud-pullers, terrorist combination tapas plate, who knows???

Regardless, one does not sue [successfully] for peace from the kneeling position. Europe seems to have one hell of a learning curve:banghead: :banghead: :banghead:

Malone LaVeigh
March 16, 2004, 12:25 AM
And what "better solution" are you proposing?
Like turning our country into one that decided "What if you had a war, and no one (from our side) showed up?" Like turning our country into one that defends itself against real enemies and that doesn't set itself up as the global cop.
Sell that concept to the Israelis. Oops, there's a problem. Yeah, preemptive terror against occupied territories has worked soooo well for the Israelis.
What exactly DO you propose? What WILL you fight for? Safety or Freedom (whatever that is nowadays)? The Spanish voters chose safety. Maybe they chose wisely. I'll fight anyone that threatens me or threatens anyone that deserves defending. The Spanish voters expressed their outrage against a government that got them into a stupid war they didn't need to get into.

I don't know if they chose safety. It might be safer to stay the lackey of the world's only imperial superpower.
Opposition to the war did not save Turkey, Morocco or Australia's citizens from the wrath of the terrorists, and this act will not(in my view) save the Spanish. Well, Australia was part of the "coalition of the willing." Turkey's government wanted to support the war, but their legislative branch blocked it. Being a secular Arabic nation, they have a long history with the Islamicists and I suspect their problems reflect that more than what they did or didn't do in relation to the Iraq War. Same for Morrocco.
Yes, it's hard not to see these enemies in terms of black and white. In Iraq a vicious and evil dictator has been removed, one guilty of wars of aggression and horrendous violations of human rights. In Afghanistan they were annihilating music art and culture, burying homosexuals alive, shooting women for adultery, and making Jews and Hindus wear special markings on their clothing. No one's mourning the deposition of Saddam. Well, no one anyone cares about, anyway. That doesn't mean it was right for the US to take international law in their own hands. It's not what it did to them as much as what it did to us.


Some time back, my sig line said, "Finish the job." and "Throw out the liars that got us into this mess." I'd say now with Saddam out, our job is done. Maybe the Spanish felt the same way. At any rate, they got rid of their liars. Will we have as much character?

fallingblock
March 16, 2004, 12:46 AM
"One Worlders" like Soros, are you?

Not a disciple of Amatai Etzione?:eek:


************************************************************
"That doesn't mean it was right for the US to take international law in their own hands. It's not what it did to them as much as what it did to us."
************************************************************


That statement reeks of Etzione's philosophy.


When it is necessary for a nation to act in its own defense,
"international law" has no jurisdiction.

We went around the "unjust war" merry-go-round a year ago, and agree to disagree on the merit of the Iraq war. I support it, you oppose it.

But "international law?:barf:


************************************************************
"Like turning our country into one that defends itself against real enemies and that doesn't set itself up as the global cop."
************************************************************


There's another one of those misguided concepts.

How is it that claims are made that the U.S. is a "global cop",
while many complain that it is avoiding situations in North Korea, Haiti, Niger, Sudan, pick your favorite hot spot?:confused:

I prefer the world model with one big power to one with several aspiring contenders. ;)

For what it's worth, no nation can long afford such largess as the U.S. dispenses today.

Malone LaVeigh
March 16, 2004, 02:15 AM
When it is necessary for a nation to act in its own defense,
"international law" has no jurisdiction. Tell it to GWB. His only justification for the war was to enforce UN mandates. You wouldn't disagree with your leader would you?

I don't know much about Amatai Etzione. If his philosophy is that putting the country on a permanent war footing is bad for our civil rights, I agree.

So would James Madison.

Malone LaVeigh
March 16, 2004, 02:17 AM
I prefer the world model with one big power to one with several aspiring contenders. Then you have a lot in common with Al Qaeda.

fallingblock
March 16, 2004, 07:21 PM
"--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I prefer the world model with one big power to one with several aspiring contenders.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Then you have a lot in common with Al Qaeda."
************************************************************

No. Just the opposite. I think that one large NATION, constrained by what is arguably the world's finest constitution and dedicated to the ideals of liberty and equality is to be preferred over several lesser nations fighting for global control.

Al Qaeda has no resemblence at all to the former, and not even the legitimacy of the latter.


************************************************************
"Tell it to GWB. His only justification for the war was to enforce UN mandates. You wouldn't disagree with your leader would you?"
************************************************************


You folks in the "anti-Bush" camp are still stinging over that one, aren't you?

"Dubya" had the good sense to use the U.N. for once, instead of the other way around. We managed to get Hussein out of Iraq, and divide the middle east as well.

No, I don't have any quarrel with "Dubya" over that.:D


************************************************************
"I don't know much about Amatai Etzione. If his philosophy is that putting the country on a permanent war footing is bad for our civil rights, I agree."
************************************************************


No, Etizione is of the opinion that no nation should be able to act alone, even in its own defense. Kind of a silly notion, especially considering the U.N. and it's makeup. He believes war can be eliminated by following this philosophy. Of course, the alternatives to war may be even worse....

A 'permanent war footing' is appropriate when a permanent war is being waged. This war against the islamofanatics looks to be a long one.


************************************************************
So would James Madison.
************************************************************


I'm one of Jim's biggest fans! He drafted "the Sacred Second", among his many other accomplishments. The county I was born into was named after him, as was my high school.

I believe if Jim was to be returned to life today, given a briefing on what is transpiring and asked what to do, he'd say something roughly equivalent to "Bring it On".:D

I'd be a bit disappointed in him if he chose to shrink from the obvious threat to the U.S., citing problems with 'international law' or fear of terrorist attack.

Mark Tyson
March 16, 2004, 07:30 PM
Turkey's government wanted to support the war, but their legislative branch blocked it. Being a secular Arabic nation, they have a long history with the Islamicists and I suspect their problems reflect that more than what they did or didn't do in relation to the Iraq War. Same for Morrocco.

Turks aren't Arabic, and by saying that their problems are unconnected to their Iraq policy you are proving my point - that Islamists will never be appeased.

You were right about Australia - my mistake.

It's not what it did to them as much as what it did to us.

What do you mean?

Quick Draw McGraw
March 16, 2004, 08:59 PM
Malone LaVeigh said:
I'll fight anyone that threatens me or threatens anyone that deserves defending.
and also:
No one's mourning the deposition of Saddam. Well, no one anyone cares about, anyway. That doesn't mean it was right for the US to take international law in their own hands.
I humbly request that you clarify your statements a little bit. A pretty solid case can be made that Saddam was definitely murdering his people. You said yourself that no one is mourning his removal.

Do the Iraqi people deserve to be defended? I you answer yes, that means that you will fight for them, right? Is this, then, not an instance of the US taking international law in our own hands?

I know that Bush cited WMD and a threat to our national security more than he did the defense of a people from a murderous dictator. I'm pretty sure that Bush could have handled his position better approaching the Iraq war, but I also think that Saddam should have been kicked out regardless of whether he was a direct threat to us. He is a murderer in my eyes. I feel the same about him as I do about everybody else that I hear about in the news. In my opinion, they should all, at the very least, be locked away.

Anyway, I'm just asking you to clarify your position a tad. It seems that the situation in Iraq is one in which a people were in need of defending, so by this reasoning you would want to fight. It kind of contradicts your statement saying that the US should not play cop for the world.

Perhaps I'm mistaken and misunderstood you, but I'm just wondering...

Malone LaVeigh
March 16, 2004, 11:25 PM
Quick Draw McGraw: Do the Iraqi people deserve to be defended? I you answer yes, that means that you will fight for them, right? Is this, then, not an instance of the US taking international law in our own hands? ... In my personal life, and in the course of going about my own business, if I were to witness someone threatening an innocent person, I would defend them. That is not the same as going around looking for a fight to get into because evil is being done in the world somewhere.

Where would you have us stop? To follow your logic, we need to invade Russia, China, Korea (both), Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel, Sudan, Somalia, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Vietnam, Tibet, ... you get my point. No, this war was not for "Iraqi freedom."

Mark: Turks aren't Arabic, and by saying that their problems are unconnected to their Iraq policy you are proving my point - that Islamists will never be appeased.I stand corrected about Turks. Your point was that their policy didn't help them. I guess you want to have it both ways.
What do you mean? See below.
No. Just the opposite. I think that one large NATION, constrained by what is arguably the world's finest constitution and dedicated to the ideals of liberty and equality is to be preferred over several lesser nations fighting for global control. Which means you want YOUR group to control the world and are willing to let it kill people to do so because it's the best. That makes you different from Al Qaeda how?
"Dubya" had the good sense to use the U.N. for once, instead of the other way around. We managed to get Hussein out of Iraq, and divide the middle east as well. Yeah, and the rest of the world is begining to wake up pissed.
A 'permanent war footing' is appropriate when a permanent war is being waged. This war against the islamofanatics looks to be a long one.Especially if it serves a certain political agenda.
I'm one of Jim's biggest fans! He drafted "the Sacred Second", among his many other accomplishments. The county I was born into was named after him, as was my high school. Then you should read (http://www.fff.org/freedom/0893e.asp) him some time.

Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few. In war, too, the discretionary power of the Executive is extended; its influence in dealing out offices, honors, and emoluments is multiplied; and all the means of seducing the minds, are added to those of subduing the force, of the people. . . . [There is also an] inequality of fortunes, and the opportunities of fraud, growing out of a state of war, and . . . degeneracy of manners and of morals. . . . No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare. . . .

Quick Draw McGraw
March 16, 2004, 11:59 PM
Malone:

For the record, it's not MY reasoning. Sorry if I was unclear. It just seemed that when you said you'd fight for those who deserved to be defended, but that we shouldn't police other nations, it came off as contradictory to me. That's why I asked you to clarify, which you did.

Your point about having to invade all of those other nation has of course come up before in discussions like this, and it is valid. I don't think we should invade anybody, and I'm not convinced that we should have gone to Iraq. I most definitely won't vote for Kerry, and I'm trying to decide whether to vote for Bush or a third party.

Oh well, thanks for clarifying...

fallingblock
March 17, 2004, 12:03 AM
"Which means you want YOUR group to control the world and are willing to let it kill people to do so because it's the best. That makes you different from Al Qaeda how?"
************************************************************


No. I believe the facts support my contention that the U.S. is acting in the best interest of the western (free) world. Al Qaeda does not act from any desire for liberty or individual freedom. Religious fanaticism does not ethically confer the right to attack others.

The actions of the U.S., including the Iraq war, are in fact self-defense against the unprovoked attacks of Al Qaeda.

You may disagree, but there is a very real difference between Al Qaeda and the nation-state with elected officials and a liberal constitution.;)



************************************************************
"Yeah, and the rest of the world is begining to wake up pissed."
************************************************************


No, some of the weaker intellects of the world are beginning to succumb to the fears with which the terrorists manipulate them.:eek:


************************************************************
"Especially if it serves a certain political agenda."
************************************************************


And what would that agenda be, Malone?

Defeating the islamofanatics?

Making the job of 'terrorist' more difficult?


************************************************************
"Then you should read him some time."
************************************************************


Oh, but I have, Malone. I like to think Of Jim Madison as a mentor and friend.

One who wouldn't allow his nation and its core values to be blackmailed into defeat by a bunch of shadowy religious fanatics.:)


quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Of all the enemies to public liberty war is, perhaps, the most to be dreaded, because it comprises and develops the germ of every other. War is the parent of armies; from these proceed debts and taxes; and armies, and debts, and taxes are the known instruments for bringing the many under the domination of the few.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Madison would be quick to add that war still remains necessary from time to time, especially when there is a clear and capable threat to the nation state.

Jim was talking about maintaining a standing army here, and in the context of an 18th century worldview. Armies, debts and taxes are all permanent fixtures of the 21st century, and the current situation adds nothing much to that. I believe Madison would understand this, if he were to be restored to life today, having been the astute observer of mankind's follies that he was.

He'd also probably demand to return to the 18th century immediately!



************************************************************
" No nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare."
************************************************************

The islamofanatics are counting on this very concept.....

That a non-nation such as Al Qaeda may plunge nation states into a perpetual state of war, until the nation states self-destruct.

As those Spanish voters who voted from fear of terrorism seem to be calling on Spain to do.

The "state of war" is justified until the islamofanatics are all dead, imprisoned, or converted into honorable world citizens again.:D

The alternative of surrender to terrorists is not acceptable.

If you enjoyed reading about "Terrorists Win Today" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!