October 25, 2003

Taliban Watch Instapundit's keeping score:

Taliban Watch

Instapundit's keeping score: America 100 and the Taliban 0. Great pic. Listen, she's doubtless got the best legs this side of Kandahar (when she's not chilling in Cali, where she's been living for quite a spell, having wisely vacated '96 era Talib-land for the more libertine climes of Orange County).

But here's what's really going on--and the score is decidely less resoundingly in America's favor. If you are, for instance, keeping score by looking at the amount of provinces Karzai-friendly (or tenuously allied) forces effectively control--it increasingly appears a significant number of provinces have now fallen under effective Taliban control.

The U.N., perhaps more risk averse post the Baghdad HQ bombing, is ceasing operations in four provinces (and says security conditions are such that armed escorts are needed in all districts of Kandahar).

While I'm on the topic of Instapundit, another quick remark. First, let me say how I respect this tremendously prolific and smart blogger. He's undeniably the Grand Central of the blogosphere and legions of us go there daily to see what's happening in the blogworld on any given day.

But this post was pretty crude and offensive, I thought. With all due respect, I might suggest that the good professor get out and about more often. He might even find out that not all those scurrilous Palis are genocidaires....

[Ed. note: Idiot, you've ensured even longer odds against getting those vaunted Insta-lanches going forward].

Yeah, I like heavy-traffic days as much as the next guy. But first, I figure that Glenn Reynolds is magnanimous enough to take such criticism in stride and link me if he thinks something in B.D. merits a link sometime down the road.

And second, I am simply uncomfortable, even in the context of making a point about NoKo, that one of America's leading bloggers writes phrases such as "(a) cynic might advise Israel to simply kill all the Palestinians" or "(t)he Israelis are, of course, too humane to subject the Palestinians to the genocide that the Palestinians would surely visit on them if positions were reversed."

This isn't about political correctness, naivete about irredentist impulses in the Palestinian polity, or otherwise making apologies for Palestinian terrorist activities.

But to somewhat breezily suggest a country undertake genocidal actions against a people and/or assume that said entire people would doubtless visit a genocide on another group is not evocative of reasonable, rational discourse. It smells, even in the context of the thoughts on NoKo, just shy of beyond the pale. You know, an inverted Easterbrookian feel of sorts (the Palis as genocidal savages, incapable of reaching a negotiated settlement, primitives, violence-prone, etc.)

And it's grossly speculative and somewhat incendiary, isn't it? Particularly coming from a YLS grad, law professor, and leading figure of the blogosphere commentariat (with all the presumed responsibilities such a background and/or role might suggest is merited).

Posted by Gregory at October 25, 2003 09:18 PM
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