ZenPundit
Tuesday, July 19, 2005
 
MY OWN PERSONAL BLOGGING OODA CYCLE IS SLOWING

I see from Dan that a huge blogospheric storm is brewing over Congressman Tancredo's comments. I'm sort of wondering where these folks were from 1949 -1991 when we had 250+ million Soviet citizens targeted for nuclear annihilation who had a lot less responsibility for what the Politburo did than what wealthy Saudi and Gulf state Arabs by the thousands have for Bin Laden's actions. This was American policy for so long that the prospect of global holocaust was considered a normal state of affairs for decades. I'm sorry, Hugh Hewett is simply ignorant here.

Tancredo's hamhanded, off-the-cuff, bluster looks positively milquetoast next to U.S. nuclear doctrine under Jimmy Carter. The purpose of making terrifying, credible, deterrence threats is to NOT have to actually use nuclear weapons. If a nuclear bomb goes off inside the United States tomorrow, I can just about guarantee that we will use nuclear weapons in retaliation against probably more than one terrorist-supporting country. If we are bombed it will because our enemies disbelieved that we would retaliate, not because we are clear that we will.
 
Comments:
i think there are two important distinctions to be made here.

first, tancredo is not in a policy position and thus plays more of a rhetorical role than anything else. his remarks were public and not definitive and can easily be read by radicals as proof of a clash of civilizations, thus feeding and not negating the current situation wrt the islamic world as a whole. it's in that context that tancredo's remarks are so grossly irresponsible. i appreciate that should such an event occur, retaliation may be overwhelming, but it simply isn't the place of a representative from colorado to dictate as such.

second, tancredo has a history of making remarks that seem both designed to inflame sentiments and reasonable enough to him. his advocacy or a total shut-down of the mexican border buchanan-style is quite relevant here. tancredo doesn't make just a few off-the-cuff remarks, he makes a career of it. that i find quite beyond any notion of responsibility of a us house representative.

if these comments could be tempered, that would be one thing. but they can't. i'm very much disappointed with my neighbors for condoning his bevaviour.
 
Hi jb

The transcript did not make Tancredo sound like Henry Kissinger on this issue, that's for sure.

I haven't followed Tancredo's career closely, he pops up in the chicago tribune primarily on immigration issues ( my position is that immigration is generally good, an uncontrolled border is not)though it sounds like he has been irritating you for some time now.
 
Hi Mark,

As you point out, it's amazing how many people have forgotten (or never knew, or were never taught) what MAD was. And that it worked.

While I'm at it, I must say I'm becoming concerned about the increasingly fashionable theory that Al Queda isn't using WMD so as to avoid retaliation. It's at least as likely that they're trying to make us think that, and to divert our resources and attention to preventing low-level attacks. Then, one day out of the blue . . .

The caliphate won't be reestablished by using conventional explosives. They know that. We know that.
 
Marc,

I agree.

I also believe the Bush administration has since 9/11, through deniable but credible cut-outs, put the " word out" on retaliatory possibilities. Coupled of course with the very obvious, open warning of the policy changes in the Nuclear Posture Review
 
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