Wednesday, February 26, 2003

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THOSE FATUOUS AND CYNICAL HUMAN SHIELDS: Tapped has admirably and appropriately scolded the antiwar protestors now heading to Iraq as "human shields," with the idea of thwarting U.S. bombing raids: "If you're opposed to war at any cost, risking your life to protest it has a certain nobility and purity to it. But by our lights, a line is crossed when citizens go from engaging in the political process to prevent a decision to go to war to actively impeding prosecution of the war once that decision has been made."

The situation is even worse than Tapped (or Salon) suggests. According to this Chicago Tribune story, the human shields aren't risking their lives.

Here's the key section of the article:

"'We are here for the people, not the government,' said Katarina Soederholm of Norway. She said she objects to the group being used for 'propaganda.'

The Iraqi government has given the volunteers unprecedented freedom to organize their protests, which have included a blood drive and several marches. The government pays for their hotels and provides other services such as phone lines and Internet access.

Soederholm was not part of the group going to the power plant.

'Too risky' was her assessment. 'I will go to a hospital,' she said, 'I don't want to be someplace where my life will really be in danger.'

Despite being called 'human shields,' many activists aren't prepared to die.

'I am not saying I will see this thing through to the bitter end,' said [Godfrey] Meynell, the leader of the group at the power plant. Most plan to leave before any attack starts."

If these protestors don't intend to be human shields when the war actually starts, why are they going to Iraq? What possible purpose could this activity serve other than to boost the Iraqi regime? How can these people be called anything but fools or traitors? [You do know that many of these people aren't Americans--ed. How about traitors to Western civilization? That works!--ed.]

The hypocrisy of these protestors' actions is so rank that they can do nothing to further their alleged cause of peace. There are unsavory members of both sides of this debate, but these people are lower than either Noam Chomsky or ANSWER on the food chain of stupid ideas.

[I thought you weren't going to write about the protestors again--ed. These people are far, far more insidious than run-of-the-mill protestors.]

UPDATE: I take back what I said about Chomsky -- click here for why.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Chris Lawrence, Virginia Postrel, and Tim Blair have some further thoughts on these nitwits.

posted by Dan on 02.26.03 at 09:55 AM