You gotta love Gen Schwartzkopf

Sppedmode

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Every now and then it takes a true military mind to come up with a classic quote....

In a recent interview, General Norman Schwartzkopf was asked if he thought there was room for forgiveness toward the people who have harbored and abetted the terrorists who perpetrated the 9/11 attackson America.

His answer: "I believe that forgiving them is God's function. Our job is simply to arrange the meeting"
 

hobbsmeter

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That was great!

What a great quote! Was it a TV or magazine interview? I'd love to see the whole interview.
 

VaB

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Norman is the man, but...

http://www.snopes2.com/military/norman.htm



Legend: General Norman Schwarzkopf provided a pithy quote about whether we should show forgivenesss towards those who harbored terrorists.

Status: False.

Example:

[Collected on the Internet, 2002]
In a recent interview, General Norman Schwartzkopf was asked if he didn't think there was room for forgiveness toward the people who have harbored and abetted the terrorists who perpetrated the 9/11 attacks on America.

His answer was classic Schwartzkopf. He said, "I believe that forgiving them is God's function. Our job is simply to arrange the meeting."




Origins: This pithy quote began circulating on the Internet in December 2001. There's no evidence this was an actual statement made by General Norman Schwarzkopf -- despite the e-mail's claims of "a recent interview," mention of it doesn't appear in archives of news stories, and it's not likely the press would have let such a juicy quote just sit there if they'd been presented with it. So, unless and until someone can point us to an actual interview that contains him saying this, we're going to mark this one "False."

This is likely a case of a saying's being stuffed into the mouth deemed most appropriate for it. "Stormin' Norman" served as deputy commander of U.S. forces in the 1983 Grenada invasion and held a series of senior staff and field commands in the United States and Europe, but it was his command of the Allied forces in the brief desert war against Iraq in early 1991 that turned him into an overnight national hero and media darling. Those on the homefront appreciated his no-nonsense way of handling matters and grew to think of him as a straight-shooter whom they could trust to have an answer for anything, especially if that "answer" needed to be delivered in the form of decisive action taken against a dread foe.

General Schwarzkopf retired in 1991. He no longer leads the U.S. Army; that job has fallen to others. The fellow in charge of operations in Afghanistan is General Tommy Franks.

A list of "quotes" circulated in December 2001 contained a slightly different version than the one falsely laid at Schwarzkopf's feet: "It's God's responsibility to judge Osama bin Laden. It is our responsibility to arrange the meeting." This was credited to "Semper Fi," an abbreviation of "Semper Fidelis," the motto of the U.S. Marine Corps. Other newsgroup posts from the same time period attribute the saying to "United States Marines."

It's possible the current "arrange the meeting" quote is a misremembering of a pithy saying common to ROTC training in the 1980s: "Your enemy's duty is to die in defence of his country. Your duty is to see that your enemy does his duty."

Likewise, America has always had a special fondness for its tough-talking generals. General George S. Patton Jr. was heard to say, "May God have mercy upon my enemies; they will need it."

In October 2001, a similar quote also (falsely) attributed to Stormin' Norman appeared on the Internet:


[Collected on the Internet, 2001]
General Schwarzkopf was asked last week how it was possible to fight an enemy willing and ready to die for his cause.

His reply: "Accommodate him."




Barbara "best western accomodations" Mikkelson

Sightings: In a 27 February 2002 The Australian article titled "Messenger Killed But Message Got Through," journalist Janet Albrechtsen used the fake Schwarzkopf quote to illustrate America's "we're coming to get you" stance.

Last updated: 27 February 2002
 
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