Thanks Barry for linking to the TT.
Islamists to West: Put Up Your Hands and Hand Over Your Property!
By Barry Rubin
Two unarmed Finnish soldiers assigned to the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) were observing along the Israel-Syria border from the Syrian side. Armed men stopped their car. While the two Finns didn’t speak Arabic they were quickly made to understand that the men wanted their UN vehicle and their other possessions.
In short, the supposed representatives of the world’s community were being mugged and they could do nothing about it, or at least nothing but to give in.
A Finnish officer explained that the men weren’t in fear of their lives; the gunmen just wanted their property.
Now let me make it clear that I’m not criticizing the two soldiers. What are you going to do when you are unarmed and terrorists with guns hold you up? Yet this little story struck me as incredibly symbolic on several levels.
The world is constantly held up by terrorists and nowadays it tends to give in, if not to the specific operations to the narrative being imposed on it. We do see rescue operations sometimes—as in the Algerian army’s disastrous “rescue” in which all the technicians being held hostage at a gas field were killed—and sometimes we don’t, as in Benghazi while the U.S. government stood by as men it had sent into a dangerous situation were murdered.