Islamist terrorists will strike on American soil again. They will
kill and maim our countrymen again.
The key word is
Undoubtedly they would prefer a
spectacular event along the lines of 9/11, but there are a number of
simple ways they could severely disrupt our way of life.
(I won't detail them here. The
fact that these ideas haven't already been tried indicates that at least
some of the bad guys have the creativity of a milk cow; let's not help the
enemy more than some of our politicians already are.)
When it happens, be careful to focus
on the big picture.
And be careful to identify which
politicians and journalists put partisan politics above patriotism in time
of war. (It is the method of dissent, not the presence of dissent,
that is at issue.)
Some of those politicians and
journalists will blame President Bush for so angering these
otherwise-benign serial murderers that they were moved to attack us
again. They will detail all of Bush's sins and bumbles and mistakes,
building to their wise and learned conclusion -- that Bush is responsible.
Those who forward such a theory will
expose their true agenda. Please
pay attention when it happens. And remember the word that they will
not be using: "Again."
The attacks of 9/11 happened even
though we didn't have troops on the ground in Iraq or Afghanistan, even
though we hadn't yet pantied the heads of prisoners with Victoria's
Secret's finest. (Actually, by the looks of it, make that Wal Mart's
As a matter of fact, when al Qaeda
bombed the USS Cole, our embassies in Africa, our military barracks in
Saudi Arabia, and the World Trade Center (in 1993), we responded with politically-correct,
nicey-nice, super-soft kid gloves. We
flexed our mighty cotton balls (yes, that's what I meant: cotton balls) by
arresting a few low-level operatives and lobbing a few cruise missiles at
some empty tents in Afghanistan and an aspirin factory in Sudan.
Nice of us. Non-threatening. Sweet, actually.
And yet, those ungrateful terrorists
didn't appreciate our marshmallow diplomacy. Instead, they went
ahead and murdered 3,000 of us on that September morning, in an attack
that was in the making for years.
So if their motivation for these and
other attacks couldn't have been George W. Bush (unless they really,
really hated the Texas Rangers), then what was it? If we had gone so
far as to pull all military forces out of the Middle East and abandon
Israel as an ally, do you think they would have left us alone?
If you do, then I suggest you listen
to the terrorists themselves. Their stated desire is that all
American military, business, and cultural influence be withdrawn within
our own borders. They hate us because in America women can be
doctors. They hate us because of Friends and ER and The
They hate us because educated people in their own
countries want the freedom and opportunity of which America is the
worldwide symbol. They learn about American-style freedom from
travelers, satellite TV, and the Internet; information about
freedom threatens radicals' influence at home. (Eisenhower declared
that the way to defeat the Soviet threat in the long run was to spread
hope for democracy among its people. He was right.)
They hate us because our government
doesn't force all infidels to bow to the radical Islamists' version of
That is why they hate us; they
themselves make it clear. That is why they bombed the Cole and the
embassies and the barracks and the World Trade Center. That is
why they murdered 3,000 on 9/11. And that is why they continue
to recruit new members and plan new attacks.
They do not hate us more because of
President Bush. How much more can they hate than to slaughter 3,000
innocent men, women, and children on American soil -- an atrocity planned
years before Bush was a blip on their radar?
We are at war. We must be united
against our enemy, just as we were united against Hitler and Tojo in the
last century. It would have been utterly absurd to have blamed Roosevelt
for the Battle of the Bulge, saying that if we hadn't provoked Hitler with
the D-Day invasion, he wouldn't have had to attack us after
It would have been utterly absurd to
have blamed Truman for American deaths at the hands of Japanese kamikazes,
saying that we provoked them into using such measures.
And it would be utterly absurd to
blame George W. Bush for the actions of an enemy sworn to destroy our way
of life. Like Pearl Harbor, they attacked us. Like the
aftermath of Pearl Harbor, we are carrying the fight to the enemy.
Now as then, the enemy who started the fight is desperate to survive and
win. Now as then, we will not be safe until we achieve victory over
(Think Hitler in his bunker.
Most Germans wanted to end the war long before Hitler died; leaders such
as General Rommel, commander of German forces at Normandy, saw the
prudence in suing for peace immediately after the success of the D-Day
invasion. But a small group of fanatics continued the fight until
they were literally expunged from the earth. Only after their
physical removal was peace and reason restored.)
While united in the cause of victory,
as a democracy we must encourage debate over how best to fight and win,
just as there was such debate in the last century.
But in that debate there is no place
for political opportunism. When terrorists hit us in the future,
some Americans (and at least one Canadian) will blame our current
President for the actions of fanatical killers who have been mobilizing
for at least a decade. Don't buy it.
But do note who does it. Do ask
yourself if they are putting politics above patriotism, and more
importantly, why. And do view their subsequent pronouncements
through that prism.
We are at war, and there are foxes in
the henhouse. Be watching when they reveal themselves.