A quote from this story stuck out to me -
President Bush rejected Lebanon's calls for a cease-fire in escalating Mideast violence on Friday, saying only that
Israel should try to limit civilian casualties as it steps up attacks on its neighbor.
The tone of this really pisses me off. It's not - "Ohmigod, they're killing civilians!", it's - "Hey, we're behind you, just try not to kill too many bystanders, ok?"
I don't really want to get into the particulars of this situation, it just makes me wonder when did we decide that killing civilians was ok, as long as the end is justified? We do it too. How many times have we heard about the "regrettable" loss of civilian life in Iraq, or more likely the unfortunate "collateral damage" that inevitably accompanies air strikes.
Yes, the terrorists have to hunted down, the insurgents have to be caught, Hezbollah has to be eliminated, but when did we decide that any action in pursuit of these goals was forgivable? Maybe we should conduct criminal operations in the US the same way. FBI gets word that there's a fugitive in some semi-public area or holed up in a house in a neighborhood. We could call in an air strike. That would mean zero law enforcement casualties and a high liklihood of success. So we might off a few civilians, but you have to break a few eggs to make an omelet.
Again, I'm not suggesting that we don't go after the bad guys overseas, just that we need an attitude adjustment. Our leaders have made the decision that American lives are more important than foreign lives, regardless of their innocence. Why else would we use air strikes in dense urban areas? Speed is a factor, sure, but limiting US casualties is the main reason we hear. We need to find ways to limit US casualties without trading the lives of civilians.
Hat tip to Shakes