Tuesday, November 06, 2007


Bono Councils Compromise With Al Qaeda

A preposterous notion

Via Instapundit, Tim Blair notes some "common sense" expressed by Bono:
There is an imminent threat. It manifested itself on 9/11. It’s real and grave. It is as serious a threat as Stalinism and National Socialism were. Let’s not pretend it isn’t.
Nice to see a celebrity of Bono's prominence saying this publicly. But I think the above quote is better described as a recognition of reality than a display of common sense. The question below makes reference to his just stated opinion that Bush's plan for Iraq wouldn't work:
So you mentioned this to Wolfowitz. Who else did you say this to? Did you say it to Tony Blair?

I said it in all my conversations. To Condi. To Karl Rove. I did not discuss it with President Bush. I try to stick to my pitch, and it's an abuse of my access for me to switch subjects. But I'm a lippy Irish rock star, and I'm more used to putting my foot in my mouth than my fist. So occasionally I'm just going to talk about it.

I want to be very, very clear, however: I understand and agree with the analysis of the problem. There is an imminent threat. It manifested itself on 9/11. It's real and grave. It is as serious a threat as Stalinism and National Socialism were. Let's not pretend it isn't.

I think people as reasoned as Tony Blair looked at the world and didn't want to be Neville Chamberlain, who came back from meeting with Hitler with a piece of paper saying "peace in our time," while Hitler was planning to cross the channel from France.

So what needs to be done?

There's a word all of us have learned to undervalue: compromise. Bill Clinton once rang us, because he was collecting opinions on whether he should give Martin McGuinness and Gerry Adams [of Sinn Féin, the political wing of the Irish Republican Army] a visa into the United States. I thought, "These people have put bombs in supermarkets, and many innocent people have lost their lives." So I said, "No. Don't dignify them." And he said, "But shouldn't you always talk to people?" And I said, "Yeah, but you dignify them."

I was wrong. Clinton did exactly the right thing in talking to the Provisional IRA and other extremist elements. Now they have to do the same, in my opinion, with Hamas, and they have to do the same with Al Qaeda. You have to involve them in dialogue.

But then you've also got to try to cut off the oxygen supply of hatred, which is false ideas about who you are as an American, who you are in the West. I know that sounds like limp liberalism, but it's really not.
Yes, it is.

Equating al Qaeda and Hamas with the IRA is ridiculous. With his talk of compromise in answer to the second question, Bono seems to contradict himself. Compromise didn't work with either the Nazis or the Soviets (presuming by Stalinism he was referring to the Soviet Union). Unquestionably, both struggles were made more difficult as a result of Western concessions. If al Qaeda is a threat on the order of Nazism and Stalinism, how can he possibly advocate adopting a policy with a such a disastrous track record?

Compromise with al Qaeda is impossible, as Captain Ed observes:
What does Osama want? He wants a world that bends its knee to Islam, one way or the other. He has actually made this plain in his propaganda, too, although Western analysts dismiss it as meaningless rhetoric. Osama doesn't see it that way at all. He offers the West the peace of submission -- to Islam, to Osama's authority, and to the Muslim world as our new benevolent despots.


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