[HUMOR] If I have learned anything from world leaders over the past several decades, it is that the war-mongering methods of people like Montgomery County Police Chief Charles Moose just don’t work. Police and government officials should stop their oppressive, mean-spirited hunt for the elusive “beltway sniper” and settle the sniper-victim conflict through peaceful negotiations, as I am sure officials in the United Nations would agree. Just take a look at what my illustrious leaders have been teaching me.

When Yassir Arafat founded the terrorist group Al Fatah in 1956 and became the leader of the terrorist organization PLO in 1968, my leaders were silent. Since then, Arafat’s organizations have been credited with executing American and Belgian diplomats, the Achilles Lauro hijacking, the Munich Olympics massacre, and countless other bombings and murders. Although many of these attacks have been targeted against Israelis, whenever Israel tries to defend itself from Arafat’s terrorism, my leaders tell the Israelis to put their weapons down and invite Arafat over for tea and polite conversation. Just the other day, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State William Burns urged Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to negotiate with the Palestinians at an international conference scheduled for the fall of 2003. At first, I might have thought that the Israelis should defend themselves against terrorists, but thanks to people like Mr. Burns, now I know better.

North Korea is a totalitarian regime with a long history of imprisoning and executing political prisoners. In the late 1960s, the North Korean government conducted the “Citizens Re-registration Project,” which categorized citizens based on their ideology. Shortly thereafter, the government executed 6,000 people and threw about 70,000 more into concentration camps. When North Korean officials recently admitted that they have been secretly developing nuclear weapons, my leaders told me that words, not actions, are the best way to deal with murderous tyrants. “The president,” White House spokesman Scott McClellan said, “believes this is troubling, sobering news. We are seeking a peaceful resolution. This is best addressed through diplomatic channels at this point.” Naturally.

Saddam Hussein is one of the most notorious murderers alive today. During the Anfal campaign against the Kurds, Hussein had tens of thousands of non-combatants executed, many of whom were women or children. He has also killed thousands with chemical weapons such as mustard gas and nerve agent GB, not to mention his demolition of entire villages or his connections with terrorist organizations. But U.N. officials have been advocating diplomacy, not bombs, when dealing with Hussein. “We do not want to give carte blanche to military action. That is why we cannot accept a resolution authorizing, as of now, the recourse to force without [the issue] coming back to the U.N. Security Council,” said France’s Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin. Since my President has not yet attacked Iraq, I guess he agrees: negotiation is always preferable to guns.

That is why I know that this little matter with the beltway sniper should be handled diplomatically. He has killed a measly nine people and wounded only two others. By anyone’s measure, he is nothing compared to the murderous regime of North Korea or terrorists like Yassir Arafat. Any policy that is capable of stopping these international killers could surely be used to stop some guy with a rifle in the suburbs. Armed with the abundant examples provided by our principled leaders in the U.N. and practical politicians in Washington, I have arrived at the inescapable conclusion that diplomacy, not the police, should be used to deal with the beltway sniper.

I would therefore like to propose a few suggestions that I hope would make my leaders proud. As in any situation of this kind, we must first and foremost obtain a U.N. resolution before acting. Only once the leaders of France and Russia are in full support of Police Chief Moose’s actions will we be morally justified in continuing. Second, we should publicly appeal to the sniper by offering to host a sniper-victim summit, perhaps at Camp David. At this summit, residents of the D.C area could sit down face-to-muzzle with the sniper and reach some sort of peaceful compromise to resolve their differences. Lastly, we should make an effort to see this issue from the sniper’s cultural viewpoint. Perhaps we should hire some students from U.C. Berkeley to come up with ideas of how this sniper-victim conflict might actually be the fault of the rich, imperialist United States–and Republicans. The students could all go to Washington to protest U.S. involvement in the internal affairs of the sniper-victim conflict, or to rally in support of a sniper’s right to his cultural tradition of placing bullets squarely in the chest cavities of innocent passers-by.

In any case, I am sure that everyone out there who is opposed to war with the despotic state of Iraq, everyone who thinks that the US should reach a compromise with the North Koreans as they improve their plutonium refinement skills, and everyone who thinks that Israel should capitulate to the demands of terrorist Yassir Arafat–I am sure that all of you will support me in my call to end the sniper-victim conflict through peaceful negotiation. Only after we withdraw our police from the suburbs of Washington can the vision of peaceful coexistence with snipers be realized.

On that note, I am going out to buy some Kevlar.

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Carter Laren

Carter is a part-time free-lance writer and Producer Advocate. He is also a former editor and contributing writer at Capitalism Magazine, where he primarily focused on self-defense and national-defense issues. While at the University of Pittsburgh, Carter was a regular columnist for The Pitt News. In his spare time, Carter instructs both law enforcement and fellow citizens in the defensive use of firearms and is a student of the martial arts.

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