The news has gone back and forth, the last few days, on just who may have been blown to bits by the CIA and possibly the Air Force in Pakistan last week. Various Abu Khababs and Ayman al-Zawahiris have been mentioned as having been slain, maybe. What seems generally agreed upon is that eighteen civilians, including five children and five women, were killed. I haven't even seen any speculation about how many were merely maimed. Rural Pakistanis ... what's a few wogs between friends, right?
I haven't been able to find any online evidence to which I can link, but I did happen to catch a little bit of "Hardball" (I think it was) on the tube on Monday evening. Former Democrat presidential candidate John Kerry was being interviewed, from India; he'd been in Pakistan earlier. Sure, he said, he fully supported Bush & Co in their aerial attack on this village, undertaken because some al-Quaeda celebrities were supposed to have been there at the time for a Muslim religious celebration of some sort. Yes, it's regrettable that some civilians might have gotten themselve dusted, and we're all appropriately heavy-hearted and long-faced about that, but you have to look at the Big Picture. War is hell, you know, but these guys might have been planning attacks on the United States!
Let's do a little thought experiment. Let us suppose that Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein (freshly escaped from prison), all four Dixie Chicks, Michael Moore, the freshly resurrected Timothy McVeigh, the freshly resurrected Adolf Hitler, the freshly resurrected Jeffrey Dahmer, and -- let's just go over the top here! -- the recidivist possible-insider-trader Martha Stewart were taking a little meeting in that village. And let us suppose that they were there specifically to plan serial nuclear terror attacks on the Super Bowl, the Academy Awards, the World Series, a Toby Keith concert, the NCAA Final Four, all however-many BCS bowls there are, Dale Earnhardt's grave ... and to cap it all off, they're planning a truly monumental combination insider-trading and murder-cannibalism party. We'd be justified in sending soldiers to kill these miscreants. We'd even be justified in sending soldiers who were certain to be killed on that mission. But would we conscript women and children for that mission -- women and children who had no idea what was going on, and would certainly be unwilling if they did know?
Well, that's what we did. Except that we didn't draft unwitting American women and children ... just towelheads. Does that make it OK? Obviously both El Supremo and his would-be successor, John Kerry, think so. Senator John "Lock-Step Maverick" McCain thinks so. As far as I can tell, pretty much everybody's happy, except for a handful of sorehead Pakistanis. (Oh, and me ... but neither I nor those Paks count for much of anything.)
When the next major terror attack on the U.S. comes -- and it will -- I hope we all remember this. But I bet we won't. Remember, we Americans have an absolute right to be as safe as possible, even from hypothetical threats. No matter how many swarthy foreigners have to give up their pointless little lives to improve our chances of safety by any minor amount, no matter how small.
God forgive us all.