This Administration is sounding a hell of a lot like the last one on the Israel-Palestine war. While Bush and Company have been smart in trying to get Arafat out of the picture, this pretense that the side that’s deliberately murdering innocents is equivalent to the side that attacks the head murderers is getting a bit hard to take.

We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place, until there is no refuge or no rest. And we will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists. (Applause.) From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime. — George W. Bush, September 20, 2001

We are paying lip service to this idea, but not much more:

“It is important that the Israelis and Palestinians realize that they took a different path than they’ve been on for a number of years,” she said. “And that step was to recognize each other as partners in building a Palestinian state, in building a secure Israel and Palestine, and in building a new kind of Middle East, and therefore, as partners, they need to work together from their own resources to get the job done.”

The Palestinian leadership, she said, is trying to strengthen security services that “have not been devoted to fighting terror” and have even abetted it in the past.

Palestinians must speak out strongly against terror and “they are going to have to do what they can” as they build their forces. –Condi Rice, today

I’m afraid we’re going to have to insist on the Yoda Rule here: [T]ry not. Do….or do not. There is no try.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.