Sunday, December 6, 2009
Today is December 7, “a date that will live in infamy”, Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt said – and indeed it does, although in most of the major media, it’s been forgotten. If any stories on the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941, appear, I haven’t seen them.
For those of you in Berkeley who eschew such memories, on this day, 68 years ago, 2,402 Americans were killed and another 1,282 wounded as 235 Japanese aircraft, in two separate waves, swooped down on a US Naval base in Hawaii in an allegedly surprise attack. Not as many as 9/11, true. But hardly a day to be forgotten.
The ‘what did he know, and when did he know it?’ question about FDR’s knowledge about the attack remains lost in history. Maybe he knew, maybe he didn’t. In any event, the attack on Pearl Harbor brought the US into WWII, which made possible the summary defeat of both Hitler and Japan. Books, stories and film recount how the greatest generation fought that war, ended the twin tyrannies, and ushered in a far less deadly cold war instead. The various countries of the world still didn’t like or respect each other, but for a respectable number of years, none of them set about trying to conquer the world again. They saw the consequences of taking on America, bolstered by the combined forces of Europe – minus Germany – and were deterred by the threat. In short, attacking the US had lost its luster as a viable battle strategy.
Up until the Islamists came into the picture, that is.
Muslim Arabs had been close confederates and allies of Hitler. At the end of WWII, they didn’t have the resources or technology to plot out their own plan to conquer the world, but with the world demand for their only natural resource – oil – rose, they came to take their place at the world table, albeit mostly as a spoiler. Because they controlled by default – mess with them, they turn off the spigot – a new era arrived in which the Middle Eastern Arabs played a pivotal role.
Then came terrorism.
The Arabs, unwilling or perhaps unable to develop military strategies of their own, they found a new banner under which to fight: for Allah they fought, dedicated themselves to defeating the world through jihad and to save it for Allah, through terror.
(Either that, or else it’s just a nasty bunch of fellows who like to rape, rob, pillage, burn and destroy, anyway, and saying they’re doing it the name of Allah gives them more latitude.)
What did the world do this time? Facing Islamists, the world tread softly. A “war on terror”, Bush said. Not a war on the enemies who killed 3,000 Americans in a single horrifying day.
Too afraid of offending someone’s ‘religious’ sensitivities, the countries of the world cowered, praised Islam as a “religion of peace” and assured Muslims we meant no harm, all we wanted to do was douse the flame of terrorism that burned in their midst. We did it for their sake, we assured ourselves and them, over and over. To this day, we refuse to recognize a proven and openly bloodthirsty “religion” as an enemy.
So where are we today? We’re waffling, all of us. Still unable to denounce Islam for what it is, for what it has become, we appease, we threaten sanctions, we backtrack, we compromise.
In the last two weeks, leaders of Israel and the United States both committed two totally ridiculous errors – no other word works, except maybe ‘insane’ and that’s not quite right, because they know full well what they’re doing, both of them.
In the US, the Community Organizer, after months of trying to pull off a Bubba-like ‘triangulation’ between his Democrats who want to flee from Afghanistan, and those who worried about our soldiers still over there, he placed term limits on the war, pre-announcing an end to the US effort. In essence, he said, “We’ll fight you for another year, and then we’ll quit, pull out and come home.”
How nuts is that? When do you ever tell an enemy that as far as you’re concerned, the war will end in a year? Before, in the entire history of the world, people who did that were called ‘traitors’ and they were shot at sunrise.
And then in Israel, Bibi did much the same thing when faced with a different issue. As the criminally naïve Community Organizer continued to put the screws to Israel, Bibi caved. Even though everyone on the face of the planet – excepting those who inhabit the White House – knows that “settlements” are not now nor have they ever been the issue, Bibi succumbed to White House pressure and announced a 10 month construction freeze in Judea, Samaria and – apparently -- Jerusalem.
How nuts is that? Assume for a moment that the “settlements” – Judea and Samaria – really did have something to do with Arab aggression. Of what possible negotiating value would a ten month freeze in construction have? None.
Absolutely none – as was instantly obvious. The Arabs, the Community Organizer and most of Europe instantly knee-jerked, “That’s not enough!” – and indeed, if the goal is to get rid of Israel as a whole, it isn’t. A ten month construction freeze accomplishes not one single thing – except imposing financial and quality of life penalties on the brave Zionists of Judea and Samaria.
(Assuming they go along with it -- at the moment, there are excellent signs of rebellion, and as much as I value unity, I applaud them for just saying no. It is never necessary to be complicit with your enemies in engineering your own death.)
So the Community Organizer pre-announces the end to the war, signaling that he’ll accept defeat in a year’s time or so, after thousands more American soldiers have died, fighting for what, exactly? Giving their lives to prevent a rift in the Democrat party? Is that what the American military is for? Photo ops and political cover?
While in Israel, Bibi announces a time-limited construction freeze, which has absolutely zero value, not only because “settlements” aren’t a real issue at all, but also because of course the whole world won’t accept it as enough anyway. It’s an insane action that serves only to damage Israeli citizens – all of us – not to mention further stalling any possible “peace” agreement that could be had.
Why isn’t there someone in the US or Israel who could have merely quoted one of Winston Churchill’s most magnificent speeches? True, their own speech writers can’t top Churchill, but still they could have quoted The Statesman.
Here’s what Winston Churchill said on June 4, 1940, when faced with Hitler’s threat to conquer the world:
“The British Empire and the French Republic, linked together in their cause and in their need, will defend to the death their native soil, aiding each other like good comrades to the utmost of their strength.
“Even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, we shall not flag or fail.
“We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France,
we shall fight on the seas and oceans,
we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be,
we shall fight on the beaches,
we shall fight on the landing grounds,
we shall fight in the fields and in the streets,
we shall fight in the hills;
we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in G-d's good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old."
Now there’s a leader.