Wednesday, July 21, 2004

US has bowed down to terrorists before

"The most prominent example of caving in to terrorists by the US happened in 1979 when Iranian militants seized the US embassy in Iran. The world's strongest military power was helpless in obtaining the release of 66 (later 52) diplomatic personnel. An ambitious rescue mission collapsed even before it started. No amount of saber-rattling and threats of retaliatory action could free the hostages. The ordeal ended two years later under an arms-for-hostages deal that saw the delivery of sophisticated war materiel to Iran (then engaged in a protracted war with Iraq) in exchange for the release of the hostages."

"Fear of further loss of lives also persuaded the US government to give in to terrorists when a car bomb smashed into a US marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, in October 1983 killing 231 American servicemen."

"In April 1983, terrorists rammed a truck loaded with explosives at the US embassy in Beirut, resulting in the death of 63 people, including 17 Americans. The action did not faze the US government. It said it would not bow down to the terrorists' demands to pull out its troops from that country.

Six months later, after the worst casualty record of American soldiers on a single day, a distinction that still stands up to the present, Reagan immediately ordered an immediate withdrawal of its troops from Lebanon. The policy of standing up to terrorism was promptly forgotten."

"The same scenario was repeated in Somalia in 1993. Upon the request of the United Nations, the first President George Bush sent 25,000 soldiers to that African country to prevent massive starvation of its populace brought about by anarchy. The warring tribal chieftains in that impoverished nation made it extremely difficult for the UN to undertake its feeding program. The US troops were tasked with maintaining peace and order as the UN tried to stave off mass starvation of the Somalis.

As things turned out, the Somali militia was not scared of the American soldiers and their sophisticated weapons. In November 1993, a ragtag army of Somali terrorists killed 18 US Rangers who were part of a contingent assigned to arrest a local warlord."

"Now, who has the habit of giving in to the demands of terrorists?"

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