As some of you may have heard-
"Suspected insurgents killed four American civilian contractors in a grenade attack Wednesday in central Iraq, U.S. officials said.
Cheering residents in Fallujah pulled charred bodies from burning vehicles and hung them from a Euphrates River bridge.
Crowds gathered around the vehicles and dragged at least one of the bodies through the streets, witnesses said.
Residents pulled another body from one of the cars and beat it with sticks."
Mark Steyn comments-
"Finally, on this day, spare a thought for both the five fallen soldiers and for the four dead in Fallujah, civilian workers helping to reconstruct Iraq - in other words, the “war profiteers” damned by John Edwards, John Kerry and other fatuous twerps pandering to their deranged base for the last year. Maybe they even worked for – boo, hiss – Halliburton. These private companies are doing an incredible job in Iraq and they deserve better than to be demonized by Democrats for a cheap laugh at campaign rallies. "
Over at LGF, there is this post here we're we have been discussing the various steps the US military should take to end the resurgence of pro-Saddam Baathists from infecting more of Iraq. Some are obviously suggesting levelling the whole town, innocents and all. The argument supporting this is that the Arab culture is one that respects strength, not appeasement. A MOAB dropped in downtown Fallujah and everyone stands up to listen, so to speak. I disagree, but not entirely.
I agree that there needs to be a complete blockade, a seige if you will, of those towns in the Sunni triangle that wish to see Saddam returned to power. The reason they wish for this is that without Saddam, they no longer have a sugar daddy gaurunteeing their spot at the top of the food chain in Iraq. Until they are completely starving and without hope, they will continue to bomb and mob, all the while posing for the cameras to incite more hatred and support. No media, No phones, no food aid, no electricity, no oil, nothing. If you want to leave the town, you can't come back. If you want to stay, then either kill off those perpetuating this insanity, or turn them over to the CPA. I believe that we demonstrate our commitment in a forceful lethal way, without killing the whole village. And since there are many other parts of Iraq, the Kurdish areas for instance, that aren't Baathist holdouts, sooner or later those still in the triangle will realize that they can either join up with their counrymen or perish without them.
But there is no doubt that until we kill or disable those groups who are still willing to protest for the return of Saddam, these types of things will continue.
It really is sad, no matter how we react though. You had four people trying to help rebuild a villlages infrastructure, and for thanks they get lynched. I don't know how long the US can withstand the public disapproval of forceful retaliation, but we do need to be more aggressive in removing these threats, violently if need be. As long as we are using the military, they should be allowed to do what they best: Deliver lethal force in a surgical and efficient manner. We cannot let a movement like this grow in Iraq, as it will ferment in to a bigger problem.
Levelling the city is not an option, but lethal retalition is the best alternative.
UPDATE: The Folks at the Belmont Club Blog have a post detailing exactly what I just discussed- here is the relevant quote from General Kimmit-
Q Can I just ask one quick follow-up. Just does it not send out a rather dangerous message that these people can get away with this, pretty much do whatever they want? I mean, I was in Fallujah today and people were saying, "Yeah, the Americans were scared to come back in." Does that not send out a bad message of tolerance of violence?
GEN. KIMMITT: Ask them after the Americans have come back in.