The D.C. area's suburban sniper reminds us of nothing quite so much as the importance of taking down Saddam Hussein.
Who does not want the sniper deposited in the arms of Allah? He wantonly kills some of his (presumably) own kind and terrorizes the rest. With a tarot "death" card dropped at one of the scenes of his mayhem ("Mr. Policeman, I am God"), he toys with the authorities, almost challenging them to stop him. ¶
Saddam is but a similar death merchant on a grander scale - a wanton killer with bigger toys. He has gassed neighbors as well as his own kind. He survives and rules through terror. He amuses himself with videos of torture. He fashions weapons to kill millions via nuclear and biochemical weapons. And he toys with the United Nations and Western democracies, defying them to do anything about it.
Yet, 57 percent of the Democrats in Congress voted against giving President Bush the authority to destroy Saddam and his arsenal. Apparently with their similarly fatuous ideologized brethren in the mainline churches, they fret about preemption and "regime change" and their self-defined doctrines of "just war." They prefer following the lead of a UN that daily reaffirms its own irrelevance - an irrelevance that matches their own.
All law-enforcement resources, plus the military, are being enlisted to find the sniper. The question is not whether they will succeed, but when. Is there a single individual with his brain engaged who does not earnestly desire the sniper's death? But regarding Saddam it's a more closely divided sentiment. ¶
Think about it.
In the House and Senate, 147 of 257 voting Democrats do not - that's NOT - want the president to take down Saddam. They say, for instance, that the Bush administration has insufficiently made the case linking Saddam to al-Qaida. And their ideological sisters at the mainline networks refused to carry the president's Cincinnati speech, in which he made the case once more.
In the UN, certain members of the Security Council - plus most of the Arab world, plus many of the European democracies - fret, dawdle, resist and throw up their hands. (What is it about those Europeans, whose bacon we so often have salvaged from the fire? Headline: "Preemption Doctrine Is Only Latest Policy to Irk Europeans.") ¶
In the churches and their agencies - from the Episcopal bishop of Washington to the Catholic bishop of Richmond, from the National Council of Churches to Habitat for Humanity - queasies insist on not getting with the program, and issue post-congressional-vote proclamations declaring their sweet abiding belief "that war with Iraq can(not) be justified under the principle of a "just war," but would be illegal, unwise and immoral." (One awaits breathlessly a similar proclamation regarding whether to war with the sniper.) ¶
In the Middle East, (1) the "moderate" regimes in Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia unrelentingly oppose action aimed at Saddam and his arsenal; (2) Kuwait, whose bacon we saved 11 years ago, et al. continue to cool on an American presence there; (3) the Saudis et al. continue to fund families of Palestinian suicide bombers while the Islamist world remains conflicted over whether the religion sanctions suicide bombing; (4) no Arab/Islamist regime offers to take in any Palestinian refugees from wars those regimes instigated, all seemingly support Yasser Arafat, and all - insistently anti-democratic - are unabashed in voicing their undying hatred for Israel, the region's only democracy. ¶
Meanwhile, let's see: ¶
Saddam makes his bombs and harbors (and probably funds and trains) al-Qaida terrorist fugitives. ¶
Via arrest, U.S. authorities break up cells in Seattle, Portland, Lackawanna and Detroit.
Norway's Nobel committee (a) blisters Bush for even thinking about taking down Saddam and (b) gives its Peace Prize to a naive dweeb of a former president, who does the same. And.
Al-Qaida regroups. Its largely sleeper remnants among other things (1) warn "the deputies of America" to depart the Muslim world; (2) bomb a synagogue in Tunisia (in April, killing 21, including 14 Germans); (3) bomb a bus in Pakistan (in May, killing 16, including 11 French submarine engineers); (4) blow a U.S.S. Cole-like hole in the French supertanker Limberg in the Arabian Sea earlier this month; (5) last week kill and wound Marines training in Kuwait; (6) murder by bomb a Green Beret in the Philippines, also last week; and (7) over the weekend blow up the Sari in (Hindu) Bali's Kuta Beach nightclub district, killing 200 from at least 12 mostly Western countries. ¶
Here's a solution. ¶
Instead of waiting for the irrelevants and the queasies and the malign to come around one day to right reason regarding the terror network, capture "god" and give him a job. Airdrop him and his white van into Iraq - with these instructions: ¶
"God" - Within six days, find Saddam and put a single bullet between his eyes. The nearby SEAL platoon will cover you to make certain that you make yourself useful by completing this assignment successfully, and that you do not rest until the seventh day."