Saturday, July 09, 2005

The Fate of the Whigs

Map of Jihad, Jihadist AttacksExhibit A. Here's a very quick quiz: which snippet is the work of a New York Times op-ed piece and which is the product of the Arab News (hat tip: Best of the Web)?


Words of condemnation and solidarity are fine and great in their symbolic value, but they are not enough unless backed by practical measures in cooperation with Britain and the rest of the civilized world to defeat the evil forces of terrorism.

To win the war against terror, and it must be won, we need to understand the terrorists' strategy and tactics. First they need a motive, second an operational capability to carry out attacks, and third an aim. The last is almost impossible to identify in the case of Al-Qaeda, since it is not clear what constitutes a strategic "victory" for them. . . . Al-Qaeda's terrorists have no respect for human life.



That fear has already led to questions about why the British security agencies did not anticipate the attacks, why the wealthy nations have not done enough about the root causes of terrorism and why Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden continue to function after almost four years of the so-called war on terrorism. Many will wonder why the United States is mired in Iraq while Al Qaeda's leader still roams free.

Ready for the answers?

#1 is from the Arab News: Adel Darwish Editorial

#2 was authored by the New York Times: London Under Attack

Exhibit B: consider the following snippet from Hugh Hewitt's interview with the towering intellect known as Thomas Oliphant:

Hewitt: you really think that that bombing would not have happened there a chance in your mind, that it wouldn't have happened yesterday, had we not invaded Iraq?

Oliphant: Yes, I think there is.

Exhibit C, from MSNBC's Connected, Ronald Reagan Junior suffers catastrophic punishment at the hands of Christopher Hitchens who patiently explains a tiny fraction of Iraq's links to terror:

CH: Do you know nothing about the subject at all? Do you wonder how Mr. Zarqawi got there under the rule of Saddam Hussein? Have you ever heard of Abu Nidal?

RR: Well, I'm following the lead of the 9/11 Commission, which...

CH: Have you ever heard of Abu Nidal, the most wanted man in the world, who was sheltered in Baghdad? The man who pushed Leon Klinghoffer off the boat, was sheltered by Saddam Hussein. The man who blew up the World Trade Center in 1993 was sheltered by Saddam Hussein, and you have the nerve to say that terrorism is caused by resisting it? And by deposing governments that endorse it? ... At this stage, after what happened in London yesterday?...

RR: Zarqawi is not an envoy of Saddam Hussein, either.

CH: Excuse me. When I went to interview Abu Nidal, then the most wanted terrorist in the world, in Baghdad, he was operating out of an Iraqi government office. He was an arm of the Iraqi State, while being the most wanted man in the world. The same is true of the shelter and safe house offered by the Iraqi government, to the murderers of Leon Klinghoffer, and to Mr. Yassin, who mixed the chemicals for the World Trade Center bombing in 1993. How can you know so little about this, and be occupying a chair at the time that you do?

Hitchens goes on to explain:

More than 4,000 people have died as Islamic terrorism has spread across the world over the last decade [ed: see illustration above] ...

Liberals are nevertheless convinced that this latest attack must be due to the war in Iraq. No word yet on the others.

Consider, then, the mantra of the left: "we would be safer had we never invaded Iraq". The staggering illogic of this meme is well summarized by James Lileks:

I know the 90s don’t matter at all; I know that nothing we believed in the 90s has any relevance, but you might want to heed a fellow named Osama who declared war on the West, and cited the sanctions against Iraq as one of his causus belli.

Let us assume then that the Iraq campaign had never taken place. By now either the sanctions that so inflamed Osama’s sensibilities would still be in place, or they would have been removed due to international pressure. Saddam would still be in power, free to spend the Oil-for-Food money as he pleased, lavishing stipends on Palestinian suicide bombers, building up his own weapons programs without fear of international interference, having weekly meetings with Zarkawi. (Who would have been something other than a terrorist, of course. A chiropractor, perhaps. Or a botanist.) The situation in Lebanon would be unchanged; Libya would be happily pursuing its own agenda. And we would be safer?

The American people, of course, know better. They are not stupid. They are not steeped in illogic. In ever increasing numbers, the country is turning crimson. The states growing the fastest are red. 97 of the 100 fastest growing counties are red. Captain Ed:

It appears that while Dean rages and foams at the mouth, ostensibly trying to rally the troops, what their interest groups have seen is the face of a long, long time in the minority. Their current leadership may well preside over the steepest decline in recent American political history, and unless the Democrats take steps to change them for responsible voices of loyal opposition soon, they will find themselves not just threatened with generational minority status but possibly with the fate of the Whigs.

Indeed. A significant segment of today's left appears to be made up of a fascinating combination of demagogues, obstructionists, serial fabricators and plain, old-fashioned simpletons who are incapable of adding two and two. Thankfully, such a combination won't win elections and may, in fact, force their very extinction after a few more election cycles.

Abraham Lincoln: "We have, as all will agree, a free Government, where every man has a right to be equal with every other man. In this great struggle, this form of Government and every form of human right is endangered if our enemies succeed."

DJ Drummond: The American Way

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