Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Once again, I've neglected (and happily rediscovered) a fertile source of insight, amusement, and clever commentary. For example, you can find all three in one of today's articles at The American Thinker: "Terrorists Fight Like Girls", by Major Sharon Tosi Moore.
The title alone makes it worth reading... and the fact that it was written by an American female Army officer just makes the ironies all the more tasty. (I could easily see a Cox & Forkum cartoon coming out of this!)
Also to be found at TAT is a new series of articles, called "Prospects of Terror: An Inquiry into Jihadi Alternatives" by J.R. Dunn, exploring the history and prospective future of jihad. The first and second articles are now available, and both deserve your attention. (The first was the source of a thoughtful essay at The Belmont Club, also an extremely worthwhile read.)
Another interesting quote at TAT (a quote, alas, not an article) reads as follows:
“Anyone who declares war on Israel declares war on the European Union.” [said] Hans-Gert Poettering, German member of the European Parliament and chairman of the Group of the European People’s Party and European Democrats, the largest in the 732-strong EP. Poettering made the opening remarks Tuesday at a workshop on “The role of textbooks in the Middle East conflict” hosted by MEP Jana Hybaskova.Frankly, I think that anyone declaring war on Israel has a lot more to fear from the Israel Defense Forces than from the European Union. But it's always nice to know people care.
(Time will tell if this statement is anything more than a momentary aberration, of course. By the usual historical standards, Iran has already declared war on Israel.)
In any event, if you have not read The American Thinker lately, you should!
UPDATE: J.R. Dunn's third article on Jihad is out -- on the subject of what America can expect from the Jihadis in years to come, and vice versa.
It's not an easy or pleasant read by any means. He openly predicts that the United States will let its guard down in a big way after President Bush steps down; he matter-of-factly states that 'the Bush Doctrine is dead'; and speculates openly on the next major Jihadi attack on American soil, which is, he says, almost certain to be of the WMD variety.
He also proposes a bold answer to these concerns (while simultaneously admitting that he does not expect his answer to be implemented) -- the empowerment of the American people in their own defense:
Let’s consider a single possibility: how to deal with a new attack on an American target. The simplest and most effective method of meeting such an eventuality would be a people’s militia. This is a word that has been tarnished in recent years, so it’s best to emphasize that what is meant is how the term is used in the Constitution: the people assembled for the purpose of the defense of the public liberty. The threat to the United States is effectively universal; the response should be as well.(emphasis added)
. . .
At this point, victims of a disaster are supposed to sit and wait until FEMA shows up with its laptops and forms in triplicate. We saw how well this worked in New Orleans. Suppose instead we had one house in each neighborhood with a supply of atropine and potassium iodide, and people trained to use it? (The first of these is a specific against many types of nerve gas, the second a preventive medicine to stop radioactive isotopes from settling in the thyroid. Both are extremely simple to use, requiring little in the way of medical training.)
The armed units of such a militia would keep order and prevent terrorists from taking advantage of a strike. Medical units would carry out preventive treatment and first aid, evacuation units would either get people away from the scene or persuade them to remain in their homes, whichever response was appropriate, while acting as sources of legitimate information.
(Many people in this country already own suitable rescue vehicles; they’re called pickups and SUVs.)
One of the few heartening things about 9/11 was watching people appear from all across the country to aid and assist the city of New York. Firemen, policemen, and ordinary people got into their cars and drove sometimes thousands of miles, simply to lend a hand. That is the response we’d be looking to harness. There is nothing more American than this, and the fact that no effort has been made to take advantage of it is difficult to fathom. Consider what the Katrina farce would have been like with such an organization in place.
. . .
Of course, it won’t happen. It is straightforward, it’s workable, and it utilizes the American traditions of competence, community, and initiative. But it’s also against the spirit of the age, the rebirth of Big Government, the drift toward centralization and bureaucracy. In this paradigm, the U.S. citizenry is viewed not as a resource, as a reservoir of talent, ability, and good will, but as part of the problem, to be cajoled, hoodwinked, and manipulated into doing what the bureaucrats think is necessary. The results can be seen in Louisiana.
Please give this some serious thought. You can start by reading the whole thing... and then contemplating how you, personally, can be part of the solution and not part of the problem.
The War on Terror was not invented by George W. Bush, and it will not go away when he leaves. The world really did change on Sept. 11 2001, as the cliche goes, and it will not change back, no matter how much we wish it would.
This war will be with us for the long haul... because the Jihadis won't have it any other way. It behooves us to be ready for them.