Sunday, August 20, 2006

The will to fight

I just finished reading an article at the New York Times, that bastion of liberal thought. That in itself is amazing.

What is even more amazing is the man who penned it. Ben Stein is probably the smartest man alive today in the United States. His command of the English Language is masterful. As with most truly great writers, his prose is simple, elegant, and eminently understandable. Go read it. Now.

Ben says, in part,
If we don’t win this war against the terrorists, there’s not going to be business as usual ever again. If the terrorists get to their goal, there’s not going to be a stock exchange or hedge funds or Bain Capital or the Carlyle Group or even Goldman Sachs. If the terrorists get their way — and so far, they’re getting their way — there’s not going to be business, period.
That describes my understanding of this war, and far more elegantly than I can say it. I believe that we are engaged in a war with Islamic jihadists and that the stakes are Western Civilization. Everything should be focused on the fight and everything else. Everything else. Everything else should be subservient to the goal of winning this fight. Everything else.

That includes all domestic considerations. If an asset is valuable in both foreign and domestic policy, then the use of that asset should be dedicated to defeating Islamic Jihad. If there is extra money available in the budget, then that money should be allocated to the war against Islamic fascism.

Some people believe that Islamic jihad isn't a threat here. Their memories are short, and they aren't listening to what the jihadis are telling us. They intend to conquer us and to impose a world-wide Islamic caliphate. That is their stated goal, and they are willing to do it incrementally, slowly, with great patience.

I would like, more than anything, to be left alone. To work my job, to help my children, and grow my grandchildren. To save my money, to work my little projects, to live out my life in this country I call home. Islamic jihad wants to change all that and it pisses me off. It's personal. They've told me they want to change my life.

Islamic jihadists have launched attacks against my country. They use American dollars to further their interests. They intend to bring our government to its knees and impose their will on our citizens. This war is intensely personal.

We can't even decide if we are willing to win.

5 comments:

Hobie said...

Good post Dennis. Absolutely true!

j said...

Unless there's a change in leadership we have already lost the war on terror.

oyster said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
oyster said...

I agree that we should be focused on the fight against Islamist terrorist groups. Sadly, the current administration has NEVER been 100% focused on defeating al-Qaeda. The Taliban is resurgent in the heroin-topia known as Afghanistan (and Waziristan). And while that worthwhile mission is left unfinished, we continue to sink more blood and treasure into Iraq, which is devolving into civil war. You can call Saddam Hussein many things ("a poor man's Stalin", for example) but one thing he was not was an Islamic jihadist. By any measure Iraq has become a strategic blunder of world-historic proportions, and has hindered, not helped, the GWOT.

Ben Stein is a Nixon apologist who recently said that the American economy is about to seriously unravel and that we should raise taxes to counter runaway deficits that will sink the dollar and promote inflation.

Anonymous said...

Oyster,
I recommend you get your head out of the wet sand and think about what you wrote. NO administration is going to be 100% focused on defeating al-Qaeda, because to do so would mean the exclusion of all other activities including taking care of all those poor criminals displaced by Katrina, funding for NEA, throwing money at teachers, and worrying about whether or not school kids have enough self-esteem.

If you continue to use ONLY the MSM and the NYT to get your news, it's little wonder you think Iraq is devolving into a civil war. Perhaps Saddam wasn't a Jihadist, but he certainly had no trouble FUNDING terrorist activities, including giving large amounts of money to families who performed suicide bombings against Israel, as well as performing torture and genocide (minor details to lots of liberals - just technicalities). The only thing that's a blunder about Iraq is that we haven't used enough overwhelming force, and worried far too much about useless world opinion (and the UN) to stomp the crap out of the rest of those still fighting us. However, leaving Iraq before it's stable would be a FAR worse mistake than not going in in the first place.

Bush has made LOTS of mistakes and pissed off a LOT of Americans, but not for the reasons the media likes to think. Even so, that DOESN'T mean we'd rather have a sniveling wimp Democrat for a President, nor for our Congressional representatives either. People are pissed at Bush because he hasn't shrunk government, nor cut spending, he's vetoed only ONE bill during his ENTIRE time in office, our borders are non-existent, we're giving people money and rights that don't even belong here, and he hasn't taken charge of the Republican party.

That said, I think you'd agree before GWB, there was NO GWOT. His predecessor certainly didn't do anything of value against terror organizations, as a matter of fact, if you want to blame 9/11 on anybody, blame it on Bill Clinton. Osama bin Laden has as much said so.

George Bush could certainly do a MUCH better job than he's doing now, however, his performance is already WAY above Bill Clinton's.