Tuesday, July 17, 2007

For the life of me, I can't figure out how incidents such as this, where at least 29 Sunni villagers were massacred by militant Shiites, can take place.

Why didn't the villagers arm themselves? They know they live in a dangerous place, they know that they have enemies who wish them harm, they know the Iraqi military and police are too incompetent/incapable of protecting them, and they know the US military is so stretched so as to be of no real help.

It would seem unimaginable that anyone is such a situation would leave themselves so unprotected. The Israeli settlers don't do it. Settlers in the old American west had their trusty Winchesters to defend the family homestead from marauding Indians.

And yet the Iraqis seem to have not only let their guard down, they seem to not even had a guard to let down. No AK47s in the family house. No armed patrols watching traffic approaching the village. No method of alerting other local villages - no ringing bells, no telephone hot line - to come help out.

I can't imagine how they would have left themselves so unprotected, how they could act like a bunch of San Francisco liberals.

I always hesitate to say of a victim that they had it coming, that they bear responsibility for what happened to them. But in this case, it is hard, real hard, to keep from thinking that these villagers all but put a 'SHOOT ME' sign on their backs.

And unfortunately, this was not an isolated incident. Multiple villages have suffered similar fates, and yet, they still didn't do what they needed to do to keep themselves and their fellow villagers safe.

If these people won't take action to protect themselves, are they really worth protecting?