Osama bin Laden must be squatting in a cave somewhere, wondering why some of us Westerners just don't get it. Since 9/11, the guy has released more recordings than Steely Dan on crack in repeated attempts to inform us that we're all at the top of his hit list, and he has even thrown in a few extra bombings just to drive the point home. Some of us who are quick studies got the message long ago. Personally, a few hijackers turning Manhattan and DC into scenes out of the movie "Independence Day" did it for me. However, the American Left and the Canadian government (not to mention a majority of the Canadian population) seem convinced that Osama and his thugs wouldn't have any need or desire to do us any kind of damage, if only we would just stay out of their affairs and kindly refrain from going over and splashing around in their Middle Eastern swamps.
If any thick-skulled Lefties needed yet another wake-up call, it came this week in the form of a communiqué from al-Qaeda's Abu Hafs Brigades, published in the London-based Arabic daily Al-Hayat, in which the group claims responsibility for the blackout that plagued the Northeastern US and significant parts of Canada. This same group that has claimed responsibility for the deadly bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Jakarta, Indonesia earlier this month is now saying that it hit two main power plants supplying the East of the US, as well as major industrial cities in the US and in Canada, "[America's] ally in the war against Islam, and their neighbors." The communiqué assured that the operation "was carried out on the orders of Osama bin Laden to hit the pillars of the US economy," as "a realization of bin Laden's promise to offer the Iraqi people a present."
Got that yet, Canadian Government and all you peace-loving Lefties out there? Inaction will not help you. You're a target, too! The Qur'an makes it clear that you are, in no uncertain terms:
"Prophet, make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrites and deal rigorously with them. Hell shall be their home: an evil fate." (Sura 9:73)
"Those who believe in the cause of Allah, and those who reject Faith fight in the cause of Evil. So fight ye against the friends of Satan." (Sura 4:76)
"Fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war)." (Sura 9:5)
In Amir Taheri's Holy Terror: Inside the World of Islamic Terrorism, Iran's Ayatollah Kohmeini drives the point home: "Islam makes it incumbent on all adult males, provided they are not disabled or incapacitated, to prepare themselves for the conquest of [other] countries so that the writ of Islam is obeyed in every country in the world...But those who study Islamic Holy War will understand why Islam wants to conquer the whole world...Those who know nothing of Islam pretend that Islam counsels against war. Those [who say this] are witless. Islam says: Kill all the unbelievers just as they would kill you all!"
So much for Islam being a peaceful religion. Even the Islamic extremists are calling the anti-war protester types who defend them "witless" idiots. For those who have doubted the existence of a connection between Iraq and al-Qaeda, we now know that the al-Qaeda-linked terrorist group, Ansar al-Islam, was being harbored in northern Iraq before the war. Most recently, US Central Command in Iraq has concluded that al-Qaeda and its allies have taken over the Sunni insurgency war in Iraq, and are targeting US and UK troops.
If Democrats and other left-wingers had their way, the US would pull out of Iraq (thereby declaring only a partial military victory), bring the troops home, and focus on securing the homefront in order to prevent attacks on domestic soil. However, this is precisely what the US must NOT do!
Those who criticize the Bush administration's plan with respect to Iraq and the war on terrorism fail to understand that we're dealing with a new kind of warfare, heretofore unseen by the West. American military historian, William S. Lind, calls it "Fourth Generation Warfare". Lind developed the concept of generations of modern war in a series of lectures he gave to Marines in the mid-1980s. The First Generation is war of line-and-column tactics. Second Generation warfare, developed by the French Army during and after World War I, is based on the methodical application of firepower to cause attrition. It maintained the military culture and illusion of order. Third Generation warfare accepted the chaotic and disorderly nature of warfare. The German Army during and after World War I used this messy "maneuver warfare" to its own advantage. Fourth Generation warfare has now emerged--with battles no longer taking place within the confines of nation-states, but rather anywhere and everywhere, with allegiances being formed on the basis of cultural and/or religious ties--not because of mutual loyalties to a particular state. These are exactly the phenomena we're witnessing right now with the odd couplings of secular Iraqis and Islamic extremists; and with the do-it-yourself suicide bombers who figure that they, too, can create their very own homemade cruise missile--by strapping a bomb to their chest and blowing themselves to Kingdom Come (or wherever Allah and his virgins happen to be hanging out nowadays).
There is no point retreating from Iraq, or ignoring the fact that they really, really do hate us over there. Yes, the war on terrorism is going to be costly--but it's a price that needs to be paid now, or the invoice will be sent to us later in some form or another--perhaps pasted to the back of some swarthy extremist hell-bent on martyrdom. And America's traditional allies need to quit with the hand-wringing, realize that they're targets--no matter how much they figure that distancing themselves from the US and any offensive action in the war on terrorism will spare them--and start fighting this war. Make no mistake--it IS a war that we're fighting. The other side has already decided that for us. It's just that some still don't recognize that it's a non- traditional, Fourth Generation war. The swamp needs to be drained, but the US needs--and deserves--far more help and support in pulling the plugs. Packing up and getting out of the Middle East now would only serve to convince terrorists that they can successfully terrorize the West into submission. Then watch the shrapnel fly!
Uday Hussein said it all in one of his final statements to an Iraqi media officer: "I think the Americans are serious this time. George Bush isn't Bill Clinton." Right. And thank goodness Clinton and the Democrats aren't still in charge. The only thing Bill Clinton's inaction and "compassion" managed to buy us was the disaster of 9/11. If that didn't signal a desperate need for a change in our approach to terrorists, I'm not sure what would.
As White House spokesman Scott McClelland said this week: "The US Military is going after these foreign terrorists and finding them. And they will continue to do that and defeat them wherever they may be." Ronald Reagan didn't defeat Communism overnight. It took sustained effort and a driving ambition in spite of setbacks to defeat that enemy. In the same way, George W. Bush is going to go handle this war with patience and tact while still moving readily forward. Terrorism is the new Communism--George W. Bush's very own "Wall" to tear down. Anyone who holds dear Western values and their own safety should be helping him hack away at it. Eventually, with determination and support, it too will fall.