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The Dead Hand Journal

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04
The buried lead in this article from the UK Times:
21 Shia market workers were ambushed, bound and shot dead north of the capital. The victims came from the Baghdad market visited the previous day by John McCain, the US presidential candidate, who said that an American security plan in the capital was starting to show signs of progress.
Did nobody on McCain's campaign think this would happen? Or did nobody care?

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Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 7:02 AM
Huh?

C, where's the outrage for the guys who pulled the trigger?

John McCain walked through a market. Then some very bad guys murdered a couple dozen people there in an insane reaction to his walk. Since when do reasonable people allow murderers and thugs to dictate the limits of their freedom?

Your argument takes precisely the same form as the one that blames the victim of a rape because she wore a provocative skirt.
Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 7:05 AM
I went to South Central Los Angeles yesterday. From time to time I have written about gang violence there. After I left, three people were shot in gang-style killings. Is that my fault?

Is there a causal link between McCain's visit and the deaths? Even if the killers say that they committed their atrocity because of his visit, do we blame McCain or the terrorists who did the deed?

It's high time the world focused on the culprits in the war on terror, instead of the people doing their best to protect the world from these idiots. I fear it will take another direct attack on our homeland to put the focus where it belongs – on the Islamofascist terrorists who threaten us all.
Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 9:03 AM
So to answer my question, the owners of this esteemed blog apparently fall into the "nobody cared" category, that twenty one non-combatant civilians who were unlucky enough to be used as props in a completely unnecessary campaign photo-op by Senator McCain were murdered the day after it occurred.
Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 9:29 AM
C, people die every time President Bush opens his mouth... even when he says things that bear no relation to the people doing the killing. By your argument, should he keep his mouth shut all the time, for fear bad men will do unspeakable things in reaction?

Here's a point to ponder. Your thesis appears to be that McCain's camp should have guessed the probable reaction to his visit, and amended their actions accordingly. But if that's the case, then why wouldn't the murderers ALSO be able to guess the reaction to THEIR actions, and then act accordingly?

They do, of course. These murders were an act deliberately intended to provoke YOU into feeling and reacting PRECISELY the way you have... and it's working!

John McCain is a U.S. presidential candidate who, if elected, poses a very real danger to the interests of the people who committed these murders. And, by committing them precisely where and when they did, the murderers have managed to get YOU to enter a public forum and blame THEIR actions on a man who threatens their existence.

Think about that.
Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 11:51 AM
I think the point being made is McCain is drinking the kool-aid. To probe how safe and secure and how much "progress" has been made - he goes to Iraq to walk through the market.

When you go to a market place, is it your habit to don body armor, have the area cleared and secured, surround yourself with armed guards and have helicopters flying overhead?

The 21 people who were killed the following day just proves that the market is not safe, nor has much progress been made.

McCain's trip was nothing more than a kool-aid induced photo op designed to put a happy face on the war.
Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 12:04 PM
I'm not going to address whether or not McCain should have made his inspection trip. That is another matter. The discussion here is about whether or not (1) McCain caused the killings (or at least bears some responsibility for them, and (2) whether or not public people should allow their actions to be dictated by terrorists.

From my point of view, it is crystal clear that (1) It was NOT McCain who caused the killings, but the people who DID the killings. To assign McCain responsibility is as silly as blaming the guns that were used to do the killings. The key point here is that people are responsible for their own actions – the killings lie at the feet of the terrorists, NOT McCain. (2) The moment we start adjusting our behavior to accommodate potential terrorist actions is the precise moment the terrorist win the conflict. We can give no quarter, ever.
Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 12:10 PM
Excuse me,
but as the author of the OP I would like to clarify that the discussion here is

1) Did nobody on McCain's campaign think this (innocent people would be punished with death as a result of his photo-op) would happen?

2) Or did nobody care?

Feel free to start your own article if you want to discuss something else.
Anonymous
# Anonymous
Wednesday, April 4, 2007 12:37 PM
As I'm fond of pointing out, there is ALWAYS a third option.

C, suppose McCain had NOT gone to the market, but HAD gone to Iraq. Do you suppose that there would have been no killings, explicitly conducted in such a manner as to link them as closely as possible with McCain's presence? And would you then suggest that McCain ought therefore to have refrained from visiting Iraq AT ALL?

And, if you WOULD suggest that, then how do you reconcile this with the fact that Democrat politicians ARE allowed—by the terrorists—to visit Iraq without consequence to civilians? Or that failure to visit the war zone by one side can have real consequences in the U.S. presidential election?

Regardless of what you think about the war or our conduct of it, do you REALLY want to give terrorists capable of this kind of atrocity such a direct voice in the conduct of American politics?

So...

3. McCain's office considered the possibilities and concluded the following:

a) the only alternative to explicitly allowing terrorists to direct U.S. political affairs is bound to get people killed, so

b) it serves McCain's candidacy, the Iraqi people, AND the greater War on Terrorism to take as public a stand as possible and to force the terrorists to engage in an action that will do THEM the greatest possible damage.

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