03 September 2006

The asymmetric humanity

There is a lot of talk about asymmetric warfare lately. How (if at all) could a regular army win a war against a guerilla movement, what are the pitfalls, respective strengths and weaknesses of each side. Less attention is given to the asymmetric treatment of the prisoners of the same warfare.

The headline in the Time Online Hezbollah wants to swap soldiers for child killer caught my attention briefly. The subject is being bandied for some time already, and the waters are murky. One thing for sure: the statement in the article "Qantar's role in the attack on the coastal town of Nahariya 27 years ago would make this an especially bitter pill for Israelis to swallow." is shared by all Israelis. The article reminds also what Samir Qantar is and what is his crime: "Danny Haran, 28, was shot at close range in front of his terrified four-year-old daughter Einat, whose head was then smashed with a rifle butt."

I have decided to compare the fate of this murderer with the fate of Ron Arad - the navigator and weapons system officer of IAF captured by Lebanese Shi'ite militia Amal in 1986.

Samir Qantar is alive and healthy. Nothing is known about Ron Arad since (approximately) 1987.

Samir Qantar is jailed in Israeli jail in known location. Ron Arad's location is unknown.

Samir Qantar is being visited, even by political "luminaries" like MK Dehamshe (who decided to present the murderer as an innocent lamb being incarcerated by Zionists). Who vistied Ron Arad (or the Israeli soldiers kidnapped lately) ever?

Samir Qantar is receiving medical assistance and food like any other prisoner. Nothing is know regarding Ron Arad in this aspect, but the conditions "enjoyed" by people kidnapped by various Muslim militias are well known.

To top this comparison: looking at the site of the Lebanese saint, I have discovered that he is actually a successful graduate student of "one of the Tel Aviv colleges" in sociology. The slime, you see, "always thought of education to be one of the most powerful tools in war" and "After a lot of efforts and a whole lot of years, finally Samir won his education battle and was registered in one of the colleges in Tel Aviv in 1992."... Interesting to know what kind of degrees are on offer to Israeli and Western kidnapped soldiers and citizens?

Yes, we are paying a stiff price of being a democracy and of adherence to the Western code of conduct with our prisoners. I know. But sometimes I wonder...

Cross-posted on Yourish.com