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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review June 9, 2005 / 2 Sivan, 5765

Naive NYTimes should save its finger-wagging

By Ed Koch


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | This past Sunday, The New York Times' lead editorial supported the proposal of its columnist, Tom Friedman, to shut down the Guantanamo Bay detention camp. In my commentary of last week, I described why Tom Friedman's proposal is unacceptable for national security and other reasons. This week, I will focus on The Times' view on the matter.

The Times editorial discussed the report of Amnesty International "characterizing the Guantanamo Bay detention camp" as "the gulag of our times." The editorial states, "What Guantanamo exemplifies — harsh indefinite detention without formal charges or legal recourse — may or may not bring to mind the Soviet Union's sprawling network of Stalinist penal colonies. It certainly has nothing in common with any notions of justice or the rule of law."

The Times is wrong in suggesting that Guantanamo is a gulag (a Soviet-style forced labor camp). Stalin imprisoned millions of political prisoners and murdered more than a million in the gulags. That is not what is happening at Guantanamo.

The Times editorial exhorts, "If legitimate legal cases can be made under American law against any of the more than 500 remaining Guantanamo detainees, they should be made in American courts, as they should have been all along. If, as the administration says, some of these prisoners are active, dangerous members of a conspiracy to commit terrorism against the United States, there must be legitimate charges to file against them. Those prisoners with no charges to face should be set free and allowed to go home or to another country."

The Times goes on to urge "the administration must not ship them off to cooperative dictatorships where thuggish local authorities can torture them without direct American accountability — as they have reportedly done recently in places like Uzbekistan, Syria and Egypt."

The Times naively believes that the vast majority of those held are not jihadists, but innocent civilians unfairly taken prisoner by the American military, who simply want to rejoin their families and resume peaceful lives in their communities? I don't. I believe that, overwhelmingly, they want to kill us. If they are released, it is most likely they will return to fight again. To set these prisoners free would seriously threaten our American military personnel, in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and potentially American civilians and interests at home and abroad.

During the Civil War, President Lincoln ordered that there be no prisoner exchanges until the end of the war. The President issued that order to prevent those prisoners of war from returning to battle against Northern troops. His fears were founded on grim reality. Thousands of Confederate troops captured at Vicksburg were paroled, sent home after promising not take arms against the United States again. Large numbers of these paroled prisoners nevertheless returned to fight for the South in later battles.

The Times does not understand that we are at war with an enemy that believes it is entitled to butcher civilians and American and Iraqi army and police personnel with impunity.

A news article in the same Sunday Times reported that "Rebels killed nearly 800 civilians and more than 70 American soldiers (in May 2005)." Actually, it was 80 American soldiers. Since the start of the Iraq War in March 2003, the terrorists have killed 1,667 American soldiers and wounded 12,762. They have murdered more than 12,000 Iraqi civilians, military and police personnel, and injured 39,000 more.

Of course, all prisoners including jihadists must be treated honorably, which is an American tradition started by George Washington himself, who ordered that British prisoners in the Revolutionary War be given fair and honorable treatment. That is more than the British did for American prisoners, thousands of whom suffocated or starved on prison ships in the East River.

However, the jihadists at Guantanamo should not be released unless evidence provided by the prisoner or collected by our armed forces establishes a mistake has been made, or until the current war is concluded. It is a war which I fear will go on for many years.

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Hopefully the war on terrorism will end with a victory for our civilization, which accepts the principle of tolerance for other traditions and respects differences. There can be no tolerance for the rights of jihadists to impose their will on others by threat or force. Nor should we repeat the mistake of the Clinton administration, which viewed the 1993 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center primarily as a police problem. Terrorists should be recognized for what they are, not merely criminals but enemy soldiers pledged to our destruction.

Finally, I believe we have done our duty in Iraq and Afghanistan and made sufficient sacrifices in blood and money for our own citizens and for the rest of the world. Most nations of the world stood by and did not help us in Iraq and still are providing insufficient assistance. No help has been forthcoming, even though the Iraqi government has asked the United States to stay and help it, and despite the fact that as recently as June 2004 and again in August 2004, the United Nations authorized the United States to remain in Iraq.

It is time for us to turn everything over to the new Iraqi and Afghan governments, and provide them with the arms and funding they need to defend themselves and their citizens. It is ridiculous to think that Iraq with a current army of 165,000 and growing cannot defend itself from terrorists who are estimated to number fewer than 20,000.

Let The Times save its finger-wagging for other causes than the fight against terrorists. Until we withdraw our troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, hopefully by the end of the year, The Times should remember we are at war with terrorists and guerillas in both countries and the newspaper should conduct itself as it did in World War II, making certain that its editorials and news articles do not endanger American soldiers who are protecting this country and dying on the fields of battle.

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JWR contributor Edward I. Koch, the former mayor of New York, can be heard on Bloomberg Radio (WBBR 1130 AM) every Sunday from 9-10 am . Comment by clicking here.

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