I'm glad you hung this up for viewing again. It is the most incisive and bracing short analysis of the situation that I know of. It is to be hoped that many bloggers will link to it, and if many Americans read and understand it then further dangerously fuzzy analysis can perhaps be reduced.
Particularly telling is your warning against "normalizing" the Terrorist War. Ever since the '50s, it seems, we as a society have increasingly responded to problems by institutionalizing them, creating panels of experts to issue reports, setting up self-perpetuating government agencies and imagining that failed policies must be pursued with greater vigor and larger budgets.
If this becomes our way of dealing with our mortal enemies among the Muslims, the consequences will be unthinkable.
We can sort of live with an endless so-called war on drugs fought at the wrong level -- street busts of mostly small-time dealers -- because the social cost of narcotics trafficking, while dire, is not a threat to the very foundations on which freedom rests.
But we will defeat ourselves, and risk civilization itself, if we convince ourselves that the Terrorist War is just one more "issue" that we can talk, think, spend and organize our way through. Our enemies know better, and they will exploit our acceptance of them as part of the status quo. I dread what we may have to experience before we learn to use our strength wisely … but use it.Posted by Rick Darby at September 10, 2004 8:05 AM
Holy cow! Where den Beste does a great job of detailing the EXTERNAL challenge, this article defines the INTERNAL challenge we face, which is acknowledging the extremity of the danger.
In some ways, the George Lakoffs and Noam Chomskys possess tools the rest of us need to exercise and practice to a far greater degree. Language and symbolism are tactical and strategic weapons of war. On the other hand, simply recognizing that they are such is half the battle.
The somnambulance of our culture is precisely what the Liberal elite have been working so hard to achieve for the past decades. It is what allowed them to maintain their dominance of American politics for so many decades.
I have said elsewhere, that just a "few years ago, [LIBERAL]journalists were unable to untangle Clinton’s definition of the word “is.” More recently they’ve had difficulty grasping the idea that an “ally” is a country that supports goals to which they have agreed, NOT one that obstructs. In the last weeks before the Republican National Convention, they are confused over whether the function of journalism is to report news or suppress it."
Whether the liberal hypothesis has been promulgated sincerely or cynically, in the end it doesn't matter if Liberals cannot be persuaded to defend themselves from the onslaught of Islamic fundamentalism.Posted by David March, animator & fiddler at September 18, 2004 7:17 AM
When are we going to wake up? Will it take Washington DC, New York, Chicago, and other cities in ashes, and millions, yes, MILLIONS dead before we do what we must? I've read all the writers and listened to the talking heads and all I can glean is that we are waiting for the inevitable to occur before we act because the left wing in this country weakens us at every turn by forcing us to fight with one hand behind our back just as in Viet Nam. Why can't we remember the lesson of William T. Sherman and George S. Patton that when you fight a war, fight the war to win and preserve your civilization. Political correctness be damned. National survival is what counts.Posted by Chester Pogostin at September 10, 2005 2:30 PM
Though I disagree with some of your base assumptions, your article is coherent and well thought-out. Furthermore, your article highlights exactly why I, and perhaps many other political independents, hate George Bush-- he is dishonest and incompetent. Suppose that your article accurately captures the nature of the war, and the US' military intentions-- it certainly makes more sense than the confusing drivel coming from the administration. If Bush would just stop dissembling about the nature of the war and the scope of action needed then he might open himself up to the possibility of re-gaining some respect from those of us capable of critical thought. If he furthermore showed the leadership and resolve necessary to implement his clearly stated objectives, then he might actually recover some of his squandered political capital. However, as things stand now, Bush is the one pushing the "war on terrorism" and it's interminable process, rather than saying and doing what is necessary for a decisive victory.Posted by dissemblance at September 10, 2005 10:16 PM
This is the most important, best-defined essay I have read about our current status since 9/11 happened. I had pieced together many of the individual elements or components included in this writing, but this is the summary description that brings it all into wide-screen clarity. This MUST be passed on to friends, colleagues and main-stream Americans through email links and the like. For the record, I wouldn't have found this without Google's new Blog Search tool that they introduced yesterday. (No, I don't work for Google!) God bless you.Posted by Van Vradenburg at September 15, 2005 11:20 AM
Does it matter in the long run whether President Bush utters platitudes designed to assure "allies" that he knows we cannot trust but that he can use in the short run, if all the while he is pursuing a strategy that will disassemble the ideology that drives our enemies?
For instance he breaks bread with terrorists from CAIR but on the other hand introduces freedom into the midst of the Middle East. Freedom will ultimately dissolve the fantasy ideology of Islam.
PierrePosted by Pierre Legrand at November 15, 2005 10:23 PM
Superb analysis. Cogent and irrefutable, it needs to be read by anyone who has a brain. I assume blogging this will have your approval? Acknowledged, of course!Posted by Gravelrash at November 16, 2005 4:54 AM
Freedom as described in this essay is secular. Secular has no soul. A large part of the population feels this country is not worth fighting for. This attitude comes directly from freedom as described. The backbone of our nation has been Christianity, that religion has lost its way and no longer exist. This failure of the Western culture and the acceptance of the lie will lead to our destruction. As someone much wiser than I said, "Evil has many doors, the Lie is the key to them all".Posted by jeffersonranch at January 21, 2006 6:30 AM
I also linked to this essay: it is very well done and deserves to be widely read and understood.
http://spartacus.blogs.com/spartacus/2006/01/the_fire_next_t.htmlPosted by Spartacus at January 21, 2006 10:02 AM
Thank you SpartacusPosted by Gerard Van Der Leun at January 21, 2006 10:54 AM
Posting for Andy, who is caught by the spam filter:
For individuals living within western civilization, it comes down to "What
part of "we are going to kill you" don't you understand?".
About twenty percent of Americans don't understand, and double that number
that consciously refuse to understand out of BDS or mere political
The guy that blows up your family won't care how many times you saw
Faranheit 9/11 or how much money you gave to the DNC.
At least the muslims embrace "the enemy of my enemy is my friend".
Can't think of any effective, pragmatic strategy the western left has
embraced toward a higher ideal these last forty years. None.
They keep on bitching about evil right wingers. All well and good for
fundraising, I guess, but even Soros is going to get tired of the game
sooner or later.
AndyPosted by Gerard Van Der Leun at January 21, 2006 3:50 PM
I had read "The sword and the prophet" by Serge Trifkovic within a few weeks after 9/11. It told me all that was sufficient and necessary to know about the genesis of Islam, which is as you called it, the youngest of the monotheistic religions, at least by most accountings. I also fear that secularism has risen to such heights in the west, that the call to arms in protection of the homeland just might go unheeded, and even be reviled, as it so often is, presently.Posted by jOjOEofArcadia at January 21, 2006 4:29 PM
All Things Beautiful TrackBack Religious Dogma Has No Place In A Secular SocietyPosted by Alexandra at February 2, 2006 2:06 PM
I very much agree with your article. I however disagree with the idea that another attack will bring our country togather.
I do not like to be pessimistic but I believe that another attack will push us into submission to Islam. The reason I say this is the number of people I am associated with daily that have no committment or stomach for war.
If we had this same committment in WW1 or WW2 think of how different our world would be today.
Think of what we have taught the world about our country since 1945... Korea, we withdrew.. Viet Nam, we withdrew.. bombings at Marine Barracks in Lebonon, we withdrew.. the Cole, no action, over and over in the last 50 years we or an ally have been attacked and we've reacted only to withdraw before the job is finished, or worse, done nothing.
We have, by our actions, shown the enemies of our country that we no longer have the will to survive as a free nation.
As a friend once told me, "we talk the talk but can no longer walk the walk".
Are you ever going to finish part three of The Sacrifice and the Reckoning? I am looking forward to Operation Stick... I remember you said that thinking about such horror and devastation would take time and require quite a lot from you, but here we are in January 2007 and reality might just beat you to it.Posted by gabrielpicasso at January 13, 2007 5:00 PM
I've linked to you here: http://consul-at-arms.blogspot.com/2007/01/re-first-terrorist-war.htmlPosted by Consul-At-Arms at January 14, 2007 7:06 AM
"Paging General Curtis LeMay and General William Sherman. Paging General LeMay and General Sherman. Please pick up the red courtesy phone."Posted by Scott M at December 3, 2008 12:47 PM
"What we must press for in the Terrorist War is a victory so decisive that we can, in the end, avoid the larger war lurking on the not-so-distant horizon - - a true war between civilizations. That war, should it come, will not take the name of The Terrorist War, but of The Islamic War. "
Islam at its core is subjugation of the soul to the will of Allah. You must submit or be destroyed. There is no choice in the matter. That is what alienates it from its the Judeo-christian 'roots'. Come to think of it, I think this 'link' to Judeo-Christianity is a form of a Theological Mcguffin (Taqqiya, anyone?) so it may disguise itself as a great religion and not an ancient tribal artifact for galvanizing a people for a war of annihilation against its enemy (which ever enemy it is - whether it's another Islamic 'Tribe' or whatever group of people they want to harvest)
Where there is Islam, there will be war. They may be subdued decisively for a generation or two, but it will always take another form and with a renewed purpose inside a mosque somewhere because Allahs will is tied to submission of others by any means (quite a seductive 'Ring of Power' don't you think?). I have been told by a Muslim that the one road to power by sons of the wealthy, is to become a Mullah. Ring of Power indeed.
I believe Islamic War is inevitable.
Islam must be abolished and its works laid bare for what it really is: Evil.Posted by cond0010 at April 9, 2010 12:52 AM
One more thought.
I have noticed that where ever Islam has become dominant, it seems that the people of the area have become less civilized and more tribal - dividing themsleves along very clears lines of 'race', family ties, religious sect, political ideology, etc as it is those differences that allow them to do Allahs will against the other 'infidels' so that the targeted prey may be subjugated and their loot liberated. The over all result of this sociological balkanization is poverty. It is a definate step back in civilization (and civilized behavior).Posted by cond0010 at April 9, 2010 1:11 AM
What would happen if the US launched a missile with conventional war heads. Target: outposts and training camps. The warning would be the next one is real.
Would real nukes be launched in a counter strike?Posted by sTevo at April 25, 2013 3:28 AM
Holding Muslim populations at risk is a rational response to the jihad. Anything that assures local muslims they are safe after they attack us at home is benefiting the enemy, not us. It's part of the magical thinking, we can have a war but we need not wage one. The same "I'll always back the nice plan that requires nothing from me and leaves me feeling nice brings us commielibs and RINOs conspiring to bankrupt us and leaves the terrorist structure in place in numerous countries.
"We will make no distinction between terrorists and nations that harbor those terrorists."
If illegal enemy combatants use civilians as human shields those civilians become legitimate targets in the war. Geneva Convention III.
Fight like you want to win, not like you can avoid hurting feelings of the Saudis.
Lastly, our nuclear deterrent is no longer credible because we haven't had a leader in a long time that anyone in the world believes will use them. France has gone through this before our eyes. The thinking goes: we can dismantle our armed forces because we have enough nukes to destroy a threat that would destroy our state. The problem is our enemies learned to wage war in a low-intensity manner, and within our borders so that our nukes are irrelevant. We aren't going to nuke the Saudis, Pakistanis, or Iranians because that might bring a big war. And, we aren't going to round up the local muslims because that might hurt their feelings. So we continue with this half-war that doesn't resolve the issue and leaves us vulnerable for as far as the eye can see.
We haven't the courage to fight and win and we elect leaders that mirror that cowardice. To assuage our anxiety we take turns blaming the leaders.Posted by Scott M at April 25, 2013 11:57 AM
Scott M, Damn well said!Posted by Jimmy J. at April 25, 2013 2:27 PM
Thank you Jimmy J. I include myself in the indictment that may seem at times to be just an indictment of others. I'm not sure exactly how to best use my energy to advantage, but being a bit Aspy I can see things clearly in some ways since I'm not well-versed on the social conventions. It's a bit like being a foreigner and seeing things without the context that everybody else knows already. I just have my senses and an internet connection. So the things I say I mean as a spur to action, or a cold splash of water. If it seems to be an accusation, I'm included right along with everyone else.
We need to find a way to do things. We are walked on because we seldom act on our own behalf. Our side makes the best neighbors, builds great societies because we worry about the bigger picture. That is what makes us pretty ineffective in politics. Politics is about getting the things you want. The best benefit happens when all sides work for their own improvement. We cooperate with people that are working for their improvement. We can only make things better for us by working for our interests. We can't talk others into doing good things for us. We need to convince them we might just make their life hell if they tick us off. Being nice, will get us killed if we don't control that instinct.Posted by Scott M at April 26, 2013 12:18 AM
Still relevant after all these years. Our side has learned nothing.Posted by Jimmy J. at June 20, 2014 9:49 AM
Didn't Martha and the Vandellas have a song "Panic in the Streets"?
My uncle Letsgo Lozko liked ribs and watermelon but he never ate chicken wings.
He said it would be an insult to all his bantam chickens.
"Yesterday, December 7, 1941 - a date that will live in Evil Gun History - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by homophobic and anti-diversity haters who we don't yet know were really Japanese."
"Plus they were probably Republicans."
Posted by Rob De Witt at June 12, 2016 4:17 PM
Chester has it right and I risk repeating myself over time.Until the Soccer Mom's of the USA feel fear for their way of life, this country will not have the pure will to kill our enemies. YES! Sherman and Patton were all about using every resource to defeat the enemy and we need to dig them up and put THEM in charge now!
My father was born in 1939 and recalls his fear of the Nazi's coming to get him. Such nationwide catalyst, I fear, will be required before we actually get out of the "containment" game. FFS, even John Kerry foolishly commented during his failed presidential run about getting terrorism back to the "annoyance level". We still have people in charge who think that is attainable.
No more immigrants into this country without full vetting. Build the damned wall. Fight this war to win.Find someone to do this...fat ankled and hairy toed Hillary ain't it.Posted by Snakepit Kansas at June 12, 2016 4:28 PM
I live in a rural farming community between Phoenix and Tucson. An ISIS flag was found on the town mountain. Don't think it won't happen to you. I am pissed.Posted by Leslie at June 12, 2016 7:28 PM
Islam Delenda EstPosted by Nixobilly at June 12, 2016 7:36 PM
When Bad People Get Murdered By Other Bad People, It Doesnâ€™t Make Them Good, It Makes Them Dead."
- Ann Barnhardt
It's very interesting to note that now the American government and media is attempting to make holy martyred saints out of sexually depraved homosexuals.Posted by Denny at June 13, 2016 8:23 AM
Nice crowd you attract Gerard. Your numbers are dwindling but the toxicity is on the rise.
'Denny' is a real catch.
Nice crowd you attract Gerard. Your numbers are dwindling but their toxicity is on the rise.
'Denny' is a real catch.
Jeez, it seems I've typed so much about this matter. Fifteen years that I've been keeping track, of course, it's been much, much longer than that. I guess I'll just mention selective outrage. I saw it firsthand all those years ago, and I've seen it again. Those who voted for change are tongue-tied. Even those who ride for the rainbow brand. Not a peep. One person quietly mentioned in passing "oh, there was another attack" and then changed the subject. Ministry Of Fear.Posted by Will at June 13, 2016 12:39 PM
I apologize to Art Stoneless. I didn't know there were any queers listening.Posted by Denny at June 13, 2016 2:47 PM
A regular Algonquin Round Table here Gerard.Posted by Arthurstone at June 14, 2016 11:51 AM
Rather than trolling the American Digest, wouldn't you have more fun at one of your boyfriend's porn-sites?Posted by Denny at June 14, 2016 6:10 PM
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