ARE we losing the war?

John Quayle blueoval57 at VERIZON.NET
Wed Aug 16 22:46:33 MDT 2006

>We are losing the war
>By Linda Chavez
>Wednesday, August 16, 2006
>We are just weeks away from the fifth 
>anniversary of the September 11th attacks on the 
>World Trade Center and Pentagon, and yet we have 
>quickly forgotten the lessons of that terrible 
>day. We understood then that a group of Islamic 
>fanatics had declared war on the United States 
>and that our only option was to defeat them.
>Barely five years later, we seem to have lost 
>our resolve. But our enemies haven't lost 
>theirs, as the interrupted plot to blow up 
>U.S.-bound airplanes in Great Britain 
>demonstrates all too well. So what are the chances we will ultimately prevail?
>First, it's important we understand who the 
>enemy is and why they have targeted us. We are 
>not fighting a war on terror, despite the nearly 
>universal shorthand most of us have adopted. The 
>terrorists who flew airplanes into American 
>buildings, blew up hotels and nightclubs killing 
>Western tourists in Bali and Kenya, bombed 
>trains in Spain and England, and sent missiles 
>and suicide bombers into Israel are fighting a religious war.
>In their view, we are infidels who must be 
>converted or killed. There is no room in their 
>ideology for peaceful co-existence or detente. 
>And they are willing to sacrifice their own 
>lives -- and, most importantly, the lives of 
>their children -- in order to kill as many of us as possible.
>We have never faced an enemy like this before. 
>Even the Soviet Union at its most ruthless was 
>not as pernicious a threat. The Soviets wanted 
>territory and power, but they always acted 
>rationally. Mutual Assured Destruction worked as 
>an effective nuclear deterrent because the 
>Soviets would never have sacrificed their own lives just to kill us.
>Imagine how differently the Cold War would have 
>turned out if the Soviets were willing to 
>sacrifice Moscow in order to obliterate New 
>York. But we know that the Islamists are 
>perfectly willing to pile up body after body of 
>fellow Muslims so long as they can maximize the 
>body count of dead Christians and Jews. The 
>difference is that the Soviets wanted their 
>reward here on earth, while Islamic extremists 
>don't expect theirs until they die.
>In the face of this deadly purpose, we in the 
>West seem totally ill equipped for battle. 
>Rather than single-mindedly tracking down those 
>who want to kill us, we worry that we might be 
>infringing on their civil liberties. When we do 
>take action, as Israel did in attacking 
>Hezbollah in Lebanon, we become paralyzed with 
>remorse when innocent bystanders die, as they do in every war.
>Yet our enemies think nothing of strapping 
>explosives onto the chests of their own women 
>and children in order to kill us. How many times 
>have we heard the mothers of suicide bombers 
>praise their children's martyrdom and boast of 
>those they sent to the grave, while we shed 
>tears at the loss of innocent life?
>This is an asymmetrical war not because we have 
>more sophisticated weapons and they have only 
>crude methods with which to fight, but because 
>the moral constraints are so lopsided. Can you 
>envision Hezbollah expressing regret and sorrow 
>if one of their rockets had hit an Israeli 
>target killing two dozen women and children, as 
>Israel did when its bombs killed 28 (not the 54 
>originally reported) in Qana, Lebanon? We 
>cannot, and should not, adopt their perverted 
>morality, but we should recognize the imbalance for what it is.
>Unless we learn to see our enemies for who they 
>are, we cannot hope to win this war. We've got 
>to stop treating our own government as the 
>enemy. We have to quit worrying about whether 
>the rest of the world will love us when we take 
>actions to protect ourselves. We have to give up 
>the illusion that if we just retreat from the 
>world or abandon Israel the Islamist fanatics will leave us alone.
>We must recognize that it took most of a century 
>to defeat communism and it may take much longer 
>to vanquish Islamofascism. Our best hope for 
>victory may well be that radical Islam, like the 
>Soviet Union, will begin to collapse from within.
>Copyright © 2006 Salem Web Network. All Rights Reserved.
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