RICHARD COHEN IS MAKING SENSE! (Hey, maybe he’ll get a show on MSNBC. . . .) Excerpt:
In 1962 Egypt’s President Gamal Abdel Nasser used poison gas in a now-obscure war in Yemen. Twenty years later, President Hafez Assad of Syria crushed a rebellion by bulldozing much of the city of Hama and killing anyone who got in the way. That same decade, Saddam Hussein of Iraq used poison gas against his enemies. The Middle East is a tough neighborhood.
It goes without saying that had Israel fought its Arab foes the way they themselves do, the world would scream bloody murder and bureaucrats at the United Nations would get carpal tunnel syndrome banging out condemnations. What’s more, tasteless references would be made to the Holocaust and how — such irony — the victims had turned oppressor and were using the methods of their one-time enemy.
The fact is, though, that Israel has largely eschewed such methods. It fights hard and sometimes ruthlessly — assassinations, for instance — but it has generally adhered to Western standards of warfare. It has the only army in the Middle East in which reservists have refused to serve for reasons of conscience — an option I wouldn’t recommend to any soldier in any Arab army. Israel, it can be argued, has the “most humane army in the world.”
Now where have I read that kind of thing recently?