Here in the U.S., our Constitution gives every American the right to bear arms. While the Constitution says nothing about licensing, we have learned that licensing is a necessity to keep arms out of the wrong hands. It's not foolproof, as criminals know. But, licensing does stem the flow of arms into the wrong hands.
Is America more violent since licensing? Yes. But, violence has grown in America in proportion to the growth of population and the manufacture of weapons. Imagine what life would be like here if there was no gun licensing?
Does Iraq's current situation come to mind?
In Iraq, tribes, militias, private citizens, and gangs are armed to the teeth. Danger and death are daily threats for innocent civilians. No one can argue about the need to protect one's family. After all, this was the primary reason behind our own "right to bear arms". Guns were used to hunt and to protect in early America.
Iraq can be compared to the founding of our country. It took years for us to realize that our citizens would never give up their guns. As a compromise, licensing was instituted. Now, this is not to start a debate over "gun control". That debate will continue to rage in this country for years to come. Rather, this is merely to point out what Iraq needs to do to stem random violence and sectarian killing.
The Iraqi government needs to begin the process of licensing, soon. Let the people keep their weapons but make registration mandatory. Now, this should not include registration of RPG's (rocket propelled grenades), shoulder-mounted missiles, and the like, but, at some point, they need to begin the process of "search and seizure" of these mass-killing weapons. They are doing that now in connection with a crackdown on militias, terrorists, and common criminals. The average citizen should be next.
It will be up to the Iraqi government, not you or I, to determine what is "illegal". It's their call. It's their country. We cannot fathom their history of armed tribes and sectarianism. There are a multitude of religious leaders with their own small armies. It has been that way since the fall of Iraq. Can we blame them for wanting to protect themselves and their families during the chaos that followed? But, that time has passed. The new Iraqi security forces are nearly ready to take over and ensure the peace so that the Coalition can send their troops home.
Of course, I realize it won't be easy and that such a move will launch a debate over gun control in Iraq. Welcome to Democracy! Welcome to a free people deciding their own destiny, not at the point of a gun, rather with a Constitution and the Rule of Law as the new weapons of choice.
It will continue to be a struggle. Nothing great was ever accomplished by a weak people. The Iraqi's who do not falter will win the day for their nation, not the U.S., not the Coalition. We can only stand behind them to support them until they can do it without us. And, I believe, they will. The first step is weapon registration.
Jim DeSantis is a 15 year veteran of investigative reporting. He runs a Self Help Newspaper, On Line Tribune at http://on-line-tribune-front-page.blogspot.com featuring 14 sections packed with Free articles, courses, and ebooks on a variety of topics dealing with daily life. You are invited to submit your opinion on this or on any other topic to Jim's blog. If accepted, your opinion will be published as a Featured Article.
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
Question by ash_m_79:
Absence of democracy, Weapons of Mass Destruction and support to terrorism were the reasons given for the Iraq war or which the latter two were false. In fact Bush's close Ally Pakistan becomes a fitter case for a war if these are the conditions for an Invasion. True the Taliban were asking for it for a long time, eventually someone else would have kicked their @ss if it want for America. Did Bush's personal bias against Saddam lead America to war with Iraq? Did Bush play with the sentiments of the Americans and the support of the International countries after 911? Surely The U.S wouldn't have attacked Iraq if it wasn't for 911 which we know Iraq had nothing to do with. Surely the U.S public was lied about 911 and led to a war because of one man's bias.Answers
1. We went into Iraq because we had a cease fire with Saddam after the Gulf War. Part of that was to allow weapon inspectors unfettered access. He refused. We had 19 UN resolutions. By breaking the cease fire, we voided our part (stop military action). It was then on. I watched Pres Bush talk about this before we went into Iraq.
2. No WMD's? What was gassing the Kurds? What about the missles with mustard gas that was recently announced.
3. On supporting terrorism, Al Qaida was in most countries with dictators. Do you think they were in Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, and every other Middle Eastern country except Iraq? Think about it.
4. We would have had to go into Iraq without 9-11 because of my first answer.
I suggest taking the time to learn what actually goes on instead of asking questions based on lies perpetuated by liberals and our enemies.
It wasn't a mistake. It was done on purpose and the results are no doubt as expected too. You are assuming that the miss information was accidental if you cal it a mistake. It was obviously planned.
It was clear to almost anyone who cared to look that the majority of the world was unconvinced that Iraq had WMD's. Circumstances around the world trade center are unclear and at the best you can say the current administration new there was more to those attacks than what they're telling.
If you mean it was a mistake to let the Bush administration invade Iraq, this is probably true. Since the vast majority of people are not willing to believe their govt. would intentionally lie to them, and since most people want to think what they're told to think, it was an easy mistake to make.
The question is, now that the truth is starting to show it's head, are they going to do something about it. The question is much more complicated now than it was 5 years ago. The US has made a huge mess. By removing one of the major powers of the region and replacing that power with instability of civil war, can they just leave. Don't they have a responsibility to try and tidy up before they go?
Don't be sheep. Think for yourself. Eyes wide open.
As President Clinton said, "Those who have questioned the United States in this moment, I would argue, are living only in the moment. They have neither remembered the past nor imagined the future."
Mr. Clinton went on to say," But for all our promise, all our opportunity, people in this room know very well that this is not a time free from peril, especially as a result of reckless acts of outlaw nations and an unholy axis of terrorists, drug traffickers and organized international criminals.
We have to defend our future from these predators of the 21st century. They feed on the free flow of information and technology. They actually take advantage of the freer movement of people, information and ideas.
And they will be all the more lethal if we allow them to build arsenals of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and the missiles to deliver them. We simply cannot allow that to happen.
There is no more clear example of this threat than Saddam Hussein's Iraq. His regime threatens the safety of his people, the stability of his region and the security of all the rest of us."
Mr. Clinton's reasoning for this stance was crystal clear:
" Now, instead of playing by the very rules he agreed to at the end of the Gulf War, Saddam has spent the better part of the past decade trying to cheat on this solemn commitment. Consider just some of the facts:
Iraq repeatedly made false declarations about the weapons that it had left in its possession after the Gulf War. When UNSCOM would then uncover evidence that gave lie to those declarations, Iraq would simply amend the reports.
For example, Iraq revised its nuclear declarations four times within just 14 months and it has submitted six different biological warfare declarations, each of which has been rejected by UNSCOM.
In 1995, Hussein Kamal, Saddam's son-in-law, and the chief organizer of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program, defected to Jordan. He revealed that Iraq was continuing to conceal weapons and missiles and the capacity to build many more.
Then and only then did Iraq admit to developing numbers of weapons in significant quantities and weapon stocks. Previously, it had vehemently denied the very thing it just simply admitted once Saddam Hussein's son-in-law defected to Jordan and told the truth. Now listen to this, what did it admit?
It admitted, among other things, an offensive biological warfare capability notably 5,000 gallons of botulinum, which causes botulism; 2,000 gallons of anthrax; 25 biological-filled Scud warheads; and 157 aerial bombs.
And I might say UNSCOM inspectors believe that Iraq has actually greatly understated its production.
As if we needed further confirmation, you all know what happened to his son-in-law when he made the untimely decision to go back to Iraq.
Next, throughout this entire process, Iraqi agents have undermined and undercut UNSCOM. They've harassed the inspectors, lied to them, disabled monitoring cameras, literally spirited evidence out of the back doors of suspect facilities as inspectors walked through the front door. And our people were there observing it and had the pictures to prove it."
There was only one conclusion Mr. Clinton could make:
" Now, let's imagine the future. What if he fails to comply, and we fail to act, or we take some ambiguous third route which gives him yet more opportunities to develop this program of weapons of mass destruction and continue to press for the release of the sanctions and continue to ignore the solemn commitments that he made?
Well, he will conclude that the international community has lost its will. He will then conclude that he can go right on and do more to rebuild an arsenal of devastating destruction.
And some day, some way, I guarantee you, he'll use the arsenal. And I think every one of you who's really worked on this for any length of time believes that, too."
And Mr. Clinton's solution to this problem was claer as well:
" The hard fact is that so long as Saddam remains in power, he threatens the well-being of his people, the peace of his region, the security of the world.
The best way to end that threat once and for all is with a new Iraqi government -- a government ready to live in peace with its neighbors, a government that respects the rights of its people. "
One man's bias, of course.