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Wednesday, August 20, 2003

The old gods of Canaan have returned.

I'll accept that the Religion of Peace™, properly understood, should not inspire the hideous suicide bombing that's become a matter of routine in Israel. It seems perfectly clear that the supporters and practitioners of the same would not feel out of place dashing infants to pieces in front of an idol of Moloch or Ba'al. Human sacrifice is the centerpiece of their understanding.

After all, consider this. Or the image of this.

The suicide bomber detonated the explosives in the center of a tandem bus, which has two passenger sections, shortly after 9 p.m. on a main thoroughfare in central Jerusalem.
The bus was headed from the Western Wall to an ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighborhood on the city’s outskirts, and families with children were packed in the seats and aisles.
Rescue worker Yehuda Meshi-Zahav, one of the first people on the scene, said he found a baby just a few months old, crying and alive. The baby is hospitalized and rescue workers later found the parents alive in another hospital, officials said.
“I had just come home from praying at the Western Wall and was heading home,” said Zvi Weiss, an 18-year-old seminary student from New York who sat in the front of the bus and escaped unharmed.
“The bomb went off at the back of the bus. Everything went black. I climbed out of the broken window and started running. All around me there were people covered in blood, screaming, some with limbs missing.”
The bomb was packed with bits of metal for greater deadliness, police said.
The blast, just across from a synagogue, was so powerful it blew a hole in the bus roof and shattered the windows of a passing bus. Rescuers used blowtorches to remove some of the wounded.
Crying children with tattered clothes and bloodied faces were led away from the bus, with one paramedic cradling a little girl in his arms. Doctors also leaned over a bloodied infant in an ambulance. Paramedics treated the wounded on the sidewalk, and body parts were strewn amid broken glass.

Lileks nails the problem:

The bomber was a father of two. A man who has children who walks down the aisle of the bus, looking at the children whose small short cheerful lives he is about to destroy, contenting himself with the knowledge that they are mere Jews - such a man has abdicated his humanity.

Such a man, and the men who assist him, must be hunted to the ends of the earth and quickly dispatched. Were such evils to boil out of our neighbors, we would not be so forbearing. In fact, the authorities who responded with forbearance or tictac responses would find themselves impeached. Or worse.

Finally, can we please retire the hellishly stupid phrase "cycle of violence"? As well as the term "militant"? Neither applies when one side employs men who gleefully detonate themselves on buses filled with children and the other side attempts to kill only those who plan such attacks. Or am I missing something? Should I be poring over my copies of Fr. Fahey to get the proper perspective?

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