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April 6, 2004
Voting For Terrorists

It's already starting, the spreading of the idea that a vote for Kerry is a vote for the terrorists. Andrew Sullivan throws it out there.

We'll be hearing this a lot, I'll wager. We'll be hearing about how this is the lesson we need to learn from the Madrid bombings. The Spanish were cowardly and wrong to vote out their leaders after they did so miserable a job of protecting them (and then lied about it).

It's an argument that will work on a lot of people. It's easy; throw a few quotes from terrorists or their associates saying that they want Bush out of power and you've created the link. A vote against Bush is exactly what the terrorists want. You don't want to give them what they want, do you?

The problem with the whole thing is that it's straight-up bullshit.

It's true that the terrorists want to disrupt our society, kill us, and exert power over our elections, but to think that voting against Bush plays into their hands is simpleminded to the extreme. It assumes that Kerry would just call off the war on terror, call up the terrorists and start negotiating. This is obviously absurd.

What a vote for Kerry will accomplish is that it will go a long way towards getting the world community back on our side in the fight against terrorists. With the world on our side, terrorists will find much less sympathy, much less quarter, and much less funding. The war on terror would actually be the war on terror, and not just a pretext for unilateral occupation of countries with no ties to terrorists.

A vote for Bush, on the other hand, galvanizes and vastly increases the strength and numbers of radical Islamists. It's delusional to think we can control those who wish to do us harm by force alone. We can't even begin to maintain control of Iraq; what happens when other countries start to erupt?

The truth is that if I were a terrorist, I would absolutely want Bush to be reelected. His policies play directly into their hands, fulfilling their prophecies and doing all of their recruiting for them. If America was widely seen as a benevolent friend, as willing to try to work with other cultures and points of view, terrorists would have a much harder time finding support.

Just like our pathetic leaders, they are nothing without an enemy.


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