Why So Long To Evacuate From Lebanon?

I have read several blogs where the authors have criticized the US for the amount of time it takes to evacuate the Americans caught in the crossfire in Lebanon. The criticism ranges from anger at evacuees being charged for the travel to the amount of time it takes to get people out of harm’s way. Even some of the evacuees look the gift horse in the mouth and complain about the procedures and the amount of time it takes. I remember when I was a firefighter and we would go to a house that was engulfed in flames. The homeowners, in some cases, would be giving us hell because they thought we caused more damage to their homes. They took out their frustrations on us even though we had nothing to do with the fire. I use to tell them, “I didn’t cause the fire I am here to end it.”

This, to me is the same mentality that some of the evacuees and those bloggers have demonstrated. The same people that gave Ray Nagin a pass on his efforts during Katrina are criticizing the US for its efforts. I have even heard the evacuation process compared to the government’s “slow” response to Katrina. Critics like to point to this as some confirmation that the government (lead by George Bush) is inept. These folks seem to forget that we are sending ships, some of them war vessels, into a hot spot where shooting is going on. The last thing we need is to have a rocket hit one of the ships, especially if it is full of Americans. People do not understand this and think that the US just snaps its collective fingers and people are magically evacuated.

One of the other things that causes the delay is checking the identification of the evacuees. I know that America’s left does not like people to have to show ID, especially during elections, but this is a matter of national security. Suppose I am Hezbollah, in concert with Iran, and I want to cause havoc for America. The heightened security after 9/11 has made it difficult to enter the US. I could send people through the Southern border but they might not make it. So, why not doctor up a few papers (like ILLEGAL immigrants do) and put a few terrorists on the ships with the others who are fleeing?

A terrorist group enters the US after a long flight chartered to evacuate people from Lebanon. They take advantage of the emergency to slip in and then slither away into the night. They hook up with other terrorist sleepers already in the US and begin to plot against our country. Six months after the evacuation it is a beautiful day in America. People are out shopping for Christmas presents and the malls are packed. As parents stand in line with their children waiting to have their pictures taken with Santa in malls across the country, a group of men are lying in wait. They have strapped explosives to their chests and have covered them with bulky coats. No one notices because it is cold outside. As parents wait to have the pictures taken these men move into the crowd. In a dozen or so malls across the US these men look at their watches. At the agreed upon time they rush into the center of the crown yell “Allahu Akbar” and detonate themselves. All across America hundreds of men, women, and children are killed, lying in mangled little pieces. In a moment, the once joyous occasion of Christmas becomes a nightmare. How symbolic for the Islamic terrorists to kill infidels during their Christian celebration.

A somber country tries to find out what happened and the men are looked at on mall security cameras. Eventually, a connection is made and there is a realization that they were evacuated from Lebanon in haste along with tens of thousands of other people. A commission is formed and they conclude that George Bush allowed these monsters into our country because he did not make the military take more time to check out the passengers. If only we had taken more time and looked at things closely. Signs of protest go up and bumper stickers appear “Bush was too fast and caused the blast” and “No blood for speed.”

This is why it takes a little longer for the US than some of the other countries. We have to carefully plan the movement of warships into a hostile region where a number of Mohammads would love to fire a rocket into them. We have to ensure that people have the proper ID and that we are not allowing terrorists an opportunity to sneak in. We have to make sure that millions of people in the US are not placed in danger because of a relative few in the Middle East. We also have to make sure that once we take evacuees into our control that we protect them.

To the people who think it takes too long, remember that we are trying to ensure the safety of more than just the people in Lebanon. We are also trying to ensure the enemy does not exploit the rescue efforts of the US. As for the money, take that up with Congress they passed the law. I figure that people paid to get there they should pay to get home but lack of money should not keep them from boarding (despite rumors that people have been denied, no one has).



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