The Zionist Conspiracy
Monday, December 12, 2005
David Brooks On Munich and Targeted Assassinations
Pretty good column by David Brooks in yesterday's New York Times.
Brooks properly criticizes Steven Spielberg's Munich, particularly for refusing to accept that Palestinian terrorists are "evil":
In his depiction of reality there are no people so committed to a murderous ideology that they are impervious to the sort of compromise and dialogue Spielberg puts such great faith in.
Because he will not admit the existence of evil, as it really exists, Spielberg gets reality wrong. Understandably, he doesn't want to portray Palestinian terrorists as cartoon bad guys, but he simply doesn't portray them...
In Spielberg's Middle East the only way to achieve peace is by renouncing violence. But in the real Middle East the only way to achieve peace is through military victory over the fanatics, accompanied by compromise between the reasonable elements on each side. Somebody, the Israelis or the Palestinian Authority, has to defeat Hamas and the other terrorist groups. Far from leading to a downward cycle, this kind of violence is the precondition to peace.
Brooks gets it wrong, however, on the subject of Israel's policy of targeted assassinations of terrorists, which Spielberg implicitly is strongly critical of, writing that, "over the years Israelis have learned that targeted assassinations, which are the main subject of this movie, are one of the less effective ways to fight terror... Over the past few years Israeli forces have used arrests, intelligence work, the security fence and, at times, targeted assassinations to defeat the second intifada."
Brooks underestimates the role that targeted assassinations played in defeating what he calls "the second intifada" and what I call the Palestinian terror war.
In fact, especially in Gaza, more than any other anti-terror method, Israel's targeted assassinations of senior terrorists, including Hamas leaders Salah Shehadeh, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and Abdul Aziz Rantisi created fear and discord within Hamas, prompting Hamas to tacitly agree to temporarily stop suicide bombings.