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Stephen Harper is getting a grammar lesson

measure: 1 a : to choose or control with cautious restraint

Stephen Harper’s claim that Israel’s response to the capture of two soldiers was a measured response is obviously becoming less and less tenable with every Canadian evacuated, arrested, or killed. And what to make now of the fact that the UN has verified that the IDF was repeatedly warned in the hours leading to the deaths of the observers that the bombing was coming far too close to manned UN positions.

Ah that’s easy-peasey for Prime Minister Harper: the UN observers should obviously have left the post.

Methinks that Stephen Harper is going to learn the lesson that pro-war Republicans and Democrats may learn this fall: be very careful when you pick sides in, or start wars against terrorists; you generally are going to end up picking a political loser. And why is that? Because fighting terrorists with a military necessarily results in massive civilian casualties, and massive civilian casualties produces political backlash that will eat you alive even if you do win on the battlefield. A more useful approach would be to deal with the forces that created the terrorists in the first place and strengthen representative governments in areas where they spring up.

Of course that’s hard stuff, takes a long time, and it requires that you think about shit really hard before you do it. And it doesn’t make for flashy CNN war logos, martial music, and snappy soundbites.

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13 thoughts on “Stephen Harper is getting a grammar lesson

  1. If I say that the weather is nice today, on June 26th, does this statement get less and less tenable as the weather slowly gets worse and worse, eventually making my statement completely false by January?

    Stephen Harper didn’t say that anything Israel does is necessarily “measured”. Lets try to show at least some thinly-veiled objectivity, shall we?

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  2. Don’t forget billions in weapons sales. Shrub is a complete Bush lapdog. He’s also ignorant of the reality of the world around him. Most Neo-Can-Cons had no idea that Canadians actually vacation in Lebanon… What a bunch of tight-assed jack-offs. They’ll be out before they know it…

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  3. OB: the moment I begin pretending to claim objectivity is the moment I begin absolutely lying.

    Wilson: There is no question in my mind that Hezbollah is “cowardly” using civilians as shields – that is what terrorists do. And, if you read all of my post, it is the principle reason that I cite for needing a non-military solution.

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  4. When you deliberately target a civilian population, parts of that civilian population inevitably becomes militant. So really, the IDF is just pre-emptively killing future Hezbollah militants when it kills scores of children.

    Besides that, all darkies are terr’sts, right Wilson? How can one tell them apart? It’s hard work.

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  5. Hezbollah, apparently, like Hamas in Palestine are part of the social network. Members help provide citizens services such as schools and hospitals, if I have my facts right. So they are not just ‘terrorists’ lurking in with civilians. So even if all the males left their homes and gathered somewhere else to fight, their homes would still be bombed, cos it’s the area of the city they live in. Kind of like flattening the North-end of Halifax to get rid of..?.drug-dealers..Noticed some networks calling them ‘guerilla fighters’ instead…wondering what that turn of phrase means.
    Shame on Mr. Harper for blaming the U.N. victims for their own fate! He’s starting to get tangled in his own justifications..or concsience maybe?

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  6. Flash,

    Where in my post did I say the date of Harper’s pronouncement? The only date I quoted in my comment was July 26th, as the date it was written. This number was accurate. Thanks for your input though.

    And my criticism still stands that by claiming that Harper’s “measured response” comment applies to all of Israels actions, even after the date of the statement, displays a crippling bias and dishonesty, and taints any sort of reasonable analysis.

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  7. OB,
    Sorry for not substantively responding this morning – I was in a hurry, missed my bus and hadn’t had coffee yet. And blogger has been hit and miss all day, not sure why.

    My problem is really that Harper made the statement after over 100 civilians had already been killed, and the airport and other transportation facilities had been already bombed and/or destroyed. It was not a “measured” response then, and it’s gettin’ less measured by the day.

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  8. Kevvyd,

    That’s a reasonable response, I misinterpreted your words. I have been reading all day how “Harper thinks bombing the UN is measured”, “Harper thinks 400 dead civilians is measured” etc. etc. etc. when he didn’t say any such thing. You just kinda get sick of hearing people who are so full of shit, you know. Anyways, I enjoy your blog although I substantively disagree with much of what you say. Keep it up.

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  9. Oliphant,
    Point taken. I intended for my comment to make clear that Harper said the initial response was measured – I’m willing to bet that he doesn’t think that Israel’s actions since then come anywhere close. Unfortunately, I didn’t do a very good job, so apologies are offered for the snarkiness. I misinterpreted what you said, and leapt before thinking.
    Whatever you do, keep reading – you’re a rare animal when you can disagree calmly and rationally.

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  10. Oliphant,
    I agree that Harper, that most people are having problems with Israel’s actions since. I have not heard him nuance, alter, or clarify his position much since the outset aside for a few “regret civilian casualties” comments.

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