Contributor Post Created with Sketch. America, Alone, Is Enough to Win the Fight

 

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We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.
Alfred, Lord Tenneson, “Ulyssses” 

Susan Quinn wrote an excellent article earlier this week on America’s apparent lack of resolve in the face of Islamic terror. She’s not wrong in that there are seriously unserious elements to the left’s response to Islamic terror, one which mimics the response of countries in Western Europe who believe that accommodation, assimilation and multiculturalism are the correct ways to defang the cobra of radical Islam.

However, America is not yet Europe, and it never has been, either. There is a streak of rugged individualism inside the American culture that remains to this day. We will not fight radical Islam the same way that Europe has tried to fight it because, to paraphrase an unnamed German general after World War 2 was over, war is an inherently chaotic situation, and Americans thrive on chaos.

The decentralized threat of Islamic terrorism thrives in a centralized, top-down environment. A large bureaucracy like the European Union knows of only one solution to battle Islamic terror: Stronger laws, and more of them. This might work, if terrorists obeyed laws, but since they obviously don’t, such efforts are doomed to failure from the very start. The cycle of violence will continue until the citizens of Europe take up arms and rush once more to the gates of Vienna in order to defend their way of life.

Americans, for better or worse, have a long history of not waiting for the government to solve their problems, and there’s a significant portion of us who aren’t placing our trust in the Powers That Be to protect ourselves from radical Islamic terrorism on our shores. We look to face the decentralized threat of radical Islamic terrorism with a decentralized, aware, and empowered citizenry. We know and understand that the chances of being caught up in a jihadist’s attempt to please his twisted god are very slim, but we take the steps needed to protect ourselves and our loved ones because the possible outcomes of such an attack are horrific indeed. We do not look for trouble, but if trouble finds us, we look to end it, and quickly.

America is (still) not Europe, and there is no reason why we need to share Europe’s fate.

There are 26 comments.

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  1. Hypatia Inactive

    @kevincreighton, great post!

    And quoting one of my favorite poems, too!

    So, I hope you agree the first step toward not sharing Europe’s fate is not allowing ourselves to be overrun by jihadis as they have been. They can’t just walk in here ( except across the southern border, where we need a wall.). Our government is importing them.

    Only one candidate even talks about this.

    Most recently, the Left is trying to create a big furor over Trump’s comment that the father of a Muslim soldier wrongly accused him of never having read the constitution. .

    Please, let’s not be dumb enough to be distracted by this! It has nothing whatsoever to do with the temporary ban on entry by non-citizen Muslims which Trump proposed, which IS constitutional ( no, that’s not even a questionable issue) and which a majority of Americans favor.

    i agree that an armed populace puts us in a unique position to resist terror. Our right to bear arms is our immune system. But the strongest immune system will eventually succumb yo an overwhelming infection; you also need to control the microbial expansion.

    • #1
    • July 31, 2016, at 1:21 PM PDT
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  2. David Deeble Member

    Great post and very inspiring. But why should we think that America can shape events on the other side of the world, let alone has the desire to make what are deemed the gut-wrenching sacrifices necessary to do so?

    • #2
    • July 31, 2016, at 1:33 PM PDT
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  3. Al Sparks Thatcher

    David Deeble:Great post and very inspiring. But why should we think that America can shape events on the other side of the world, let alone has the desire to make what are deemed the gut-wrenching sacrifices necessary to do so?

    Ironically, we do have a lot of cultural influence around the world. On a lark, I have been listening to a radio station in Germany through the internet (Antenne Frankfurt 95.1) and I notice the pop songs they play are mostly in English, though maybe every 3rd song is in German. I suspect the number of German songs is mandated by law.

    I haven’t checked out the Middle East yet, but I’ve read that there are lots of Western songs played there as well along with other popular arts like movies and television.

    • #3
    • July 31, 2016, at 2:08 PM PDT
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  4. Doctor Robert Member

    Inspiring words but empty. Six citizens may prevent flight 93 from reaching the Capitol, but the WTC still came down and the Pentagon was still struck. Even enlightened, patriotic Americans cannot stop the flood of invaders being imported by our present regime. Even enlightened, patriotic Americans cannot determine national policy towards Iran, etc.

    As I have repeatedly posted elsewhere, including a response to Susan, this conflict could be easily won in a few weeks by a nation that cared to win it. You and I may wish to win, but our leaders do not.

    All shame be upon them.

    • #4
    • July 31, 2016, at 2:36 PM PDT
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  5. drlorentz Member
    drlorentz Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Doctor Robert: Inspiring words but empty. Six citizens may prevent flight 93 from reaching the Capitol, but the WTC still came down and the Pentagon was still struck.

    So that’s empty? Because not all of the attacks were prevented? Indifferent to the fact the Capitol was not hit?

    Doctor Robert: Even enlightened, patriotic Americans cannot stop the flood of invaders being imported by our present regime.

    No, but they can change the regime at the ballot box. The people’s representatives in Congress (still standing, apparently) can also stop the invasion.

    Doctor Robert:this conflict could be easily won in a few weeks by a nation that cared to win it. You and I may wish to win, but our leaders do not.

    All shame be upon them.

    Shame indeed. There are many fronts in this war. Persuading our representatives to act is part of the solution. Rallying the troops is part of that process.

    Heap scorn on the “empty words” if you like. The rest of us are joining the fight.

    • #5
    • July 31, 2016, at 2:58 PM PDT
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  6. drlorentz Member
    drlorentz Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Kevin Creighton: America is (still) not Europe, and there is no reason why we need to share Europe’s fate.

    This fact remains our best hope. Europe serves a useful purpose, though, as the canary in the coal mine. If we learn from their mistakes we may yet survive. I doubt they will.

    • #6
    • July 31, 2016, at 3:00 PM PDT
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  7. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I believe that America is not yet fitting that poem.

    Good article

    • #7
    • July 31, 2016, at 3:05 PM PDT
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  8. Front Seat Cat Member

    The story was good, but the title not so much. We cannot win alone, because this war is different than anything in history – it’s ideology claims allegiance to no country or single leader, but is everywhere and wins converts through Internet – doesn’t adhere to any war conduct. We need all countries on board to fight the radical Islam element in their countries. America can lead, but we need allies to win. We are already in those countries, but it is the locals in each country who want this element out and their lives back who will end this madness. It has to come from changing the hearts and minds of the people – we had their confidence after 9/11- we would not abandon them – but since then we left areas ill-prepared and the evil of ISIS, and all the spinoffs in other countries have been emboldened and continue to wreak havoc. The mess in Syria is really bad.

    • #8
    • July 31, 2016, at 3:25 PM PDT
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  9. drlorentz Member
    drlorentz Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Front Seat Cat: We need all countries on board to fight the radical Islam element in their countries. America can lead, but we need allies to win.

    Agreed, we need allies. Disagree that we need all countries. I think we can rely on the Anglosphere. Britain is not really part of Europe in the sense discussed in the OP as evidenced by Brexit. The Aussies will stick with us. Canada and New Zealand, too. Maybe even some other Commonwealth countries. That’s going to have to be enough.

    • #9
    • July 31, 2016, at 3:32 PM PDT
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  10. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Front Seat Cat:The story was good, but the title not so much. We cannot win alone, because this war is different than anything in history – it’s ideology claims allegiance to no country or single leader, but is everywhere and wins converts through Internet – doesn’t adhere to any war conduct. We need all countries on board to fight the radical Islam element in their countries. America can lead, but we need allies to win. We are already in those countries, but it is the locals in each country who want this element out and their lives back who will end this madness. It has to come from changing the hearts and minds of the people – we had their confidence after 9/11- we would not abandon them – but since then we left areas ill-prepared and the evil of ISIS, and all the spinoffs in other countries have been emboldened and continue to wreak havoc. The mess in Syria is really bad.

    Enough fire from the sky would work.

    We have to have the will. The only answer is to burn this rot from the face of the Earth, using whatever means are needed. Until we face that horrible truth, we will not deal with the problem. Islam as believed and practiced in the Middle East is as Evil as the Aztecs.

    • #10
    • July 31, 2016, at 3:38 PM PDT
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  11. Al Sparks Thatcher

    Doctor Robert: As I have repeatedly posted elsewhere, including a response to Susan, this conflict could be easily won in a few weeks by a nation that cared to win it. You and I may wish to win, but our leaders do not.

    Front Seat Cat: The story was good, but the title not so much. We cannot win alone, because this war is different than anything in history – it’s ideology claims allegiance to no country or single leader, but is everywhere and wins converts through Internet – doesn’t adhere to any war conduct.

    I identify more with the argument posed by @doctorrobert than I am @frontseatcat. We can win alone if we take the fight to the Middle East. We lost in Iraq because we didn’t have the will to stay. What we don’t have is unity in the U.S., and our leadership reflects that.

    We (meaning the U.S. as a whole) don’t have the will to win.

    Which means I don’t have much confidence in @kevincreighton‘s argument.

    • #11
    • July 31, 2016, at 3:40 PM PDT
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  12. Kevin Creighton Contributor
    Kevin Creighton

    Doctor Robert:

    Inspiring words but empty. Six citizens may prevent flight 93 from reaching the Capitol, but the WTC still came down and the Pentagon was still struck.

    We weren’t ready for such things. Being attacked on our soil by radical Islam wasn’t even close to being in the awareness of general public on September 10, 2001. What were the big stories back then? China’s manhandling of an EP-3 surveillance plane and the death of Chandra Levy. Despite being blindsided by the attack, Americans rose up and defended themselves with what they had at their disposal.

    We’re aware now. We know it may, nay, will happen again on our shores. They will pick the weak spots to attack, like an office party or a gay nightclub. It is our job to make sure that our weak spots are anything but weak.

    • #12
    • July 31, 2016, at 4:18 PM PDT
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  13. TKC1101 Inactive

    I had an uncle, a gentle man, who passed quite a few years ago. He was from another America.

    He was assigned a flamethrower and his mission was to burn our enemies alive with jellied gasoline in caves. It was a quite dangerous job and it affected him in many ways when he came home. I do remember his hands could not stop a mild shake.

    He was not a special forces soldier, selected and trained to be highly effective. He was an English teacher who was called, did what he had to do and went home, carrying the memories he could not forget.

    He had seen and lived through hell. He did his duty for his buddies and his country.

    I hesitate to think of the media and most people’s reaction today to his assignment. I would expect to hear the phrase ‘war criminal’ and others.

    To me, he was a hero.

    When we are ready to be that America again, we will win.

    • #13
    • July 31, 2016, at 4:24 PM PDT
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  14. Al Sparks Thatcher

    TKC1101 : I hesitate to think of the media and most people’s reaction today to his assignment. I would expect to hear the phrase ‘war criminal’ and others.

    Some modern historians have criticized the use of flamethrowers in the Pacific Theater of WWII.

    No matter how righteous the cause, going to war means making choices that are morally dubious resulting in innocent lives lost, other cruelties, and injustices. A democracy that does needs to have confidence in who they are to get through those tough choices and their consequences.

    We, including other countries in the west, no longer have that confidence.

    • #14
    • July 31, 2016, at 4:40 PM PDT
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  15. TKC1101 Inactive

    Al Sparks: Some modern historians have criticized the use of flamethrowers in the Pacific Theater of WWII.

    I assume those modern historians were present on Iwo Jima or Okinawa, and made this observation with their own lives in the balance, like all honest academics. What would we do without our heroic academics?

    • #15
    • July 31, 2016, at 4:44 PM PDT
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  16. Susan Quinn Contributor

    Well done, Kevin. Thank you for mentioning my post. These times are going to require resolve, courage, and even ugliness. To try to apply our sanitized version of how the world should work instead of dealing with how it actually works will lead to our destruction. The time is now.

    • #16
    • July 31, 2016, at 4:48 PM PDT
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  17. TKC1101 Inactive

    Susan Quinn: To try to apply our sanitized version of how the world should work instead of dealing with how it actually works will lead to our destruction. The time is now.

    Bravo. Susan. Bravo.

    We can be that, if we kick the current leadership to the curb. If the government will not fight, at least let the citizenry do it. A statists biggest fear.

    • #17
    • July 31, 2016, at 4:51 PM PDT
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  18. Painter Jean Member

    Great post, TKC (#13).

    • #18
    • July 31, 2016, at 5:14 PM PDT
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  19. Doug Kimball Thatcher

    Bryan G. Stephens:

    Front Seat Cat:The story was good, but the title not so much. We cannot win alone, because this war is different than anything in history – it’s ideology claims allegiance to no country or single leader, but is everywhere and wins converts through Internet – doesn’t adhere to any war conduct. We need all countries on board to fight the radical Islam element in their countries. America can lead, but we need allies to win. We are already in those countries, but it is the locals in each country who want this element out and their lives back who will end this madness. It has to come from changing the hearts and minds of the people – we had their confidence after 9/11- we would not abandon them – but since then we left areas ill-prepared and the evil of ISIS, and all the spinoffs in other countries have been emboldened and continue to wreak havoc. The mess in Syria is really bad.

    Enough fire from the sky would work.

    We have to have the will. The only answer is to burn this rot from the face of the Earth, using whatever means are needed. Until we face that horrible truth, we will not deal with the problem. Islam as believed and practiced in the Middle East is as Evil as the Aztecs.

    I suspect that Aztecs everywhere find this comment prejudicial. I, for one, am pro-Aztec. Bring back the obsidian sword, human sacrifice and proto-soccer played with severed heads! We could stop global warming with a few thousand sacrifices. Come on, people!

    • #19
    • July 31, 2016, at 5:41 PM PDT
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  20. Trink Coolidge
    Trink Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    TKC1101 : I had an uncle, a gentle man, who passed quite a few years ago. He was from another America.

    He was not a special forces soldier, selected and trained to be highly effective. He was an English teacher who was called, did what he had to do and went home, carrying the memories he could not forget.

    TKC1101. This is so painfully moving. Can you tell us that your uncle found some measure of peace . . . some oasis, even briefly where he found love and caring from family and friends. Did he know you held him in honor in your heart?

    How may we today assist the boys coming back from war zones with PTSS? I know it’s such an overused expression, but truly, it breaks my heart.

    • #20
    • July 31, 2016, at 8:50 PM PDT
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  21. TKC1101 Inactive

    Trink:

    TKC1101 : I had an uncle, a gentle man, who passed quite a few years ago. He was from another America.

    He was not a special forces soldier, selected and trained to be highly effective. He was an English teacher who was called, did what he had to do and went home, carrying the memories he could not forget.

    TKC1101. This is so painfully moving. Can you tell us that your uncle found some measure of peace . . . some oasis, even briefly where he found love and caring from family and friends. Did he know you held him in honor in your heart?

    How may we today assist the boys coming back from war zones with PTSS? I know it’s such an overused expression, but truly, it breaks my heart.

    He raised two fine sons and a daughter, his wife adored him, and he managed quite well. He just zoned out at times and tears ran down his cheeks. He was quiet about it and we all respected his need for quiet.

    He talked to me about it once, when I, as a nine year old who had just learned about Iwo Jima asked him what happened. He was quite patient and told me a story that lasted over an hour. He then asked me to remember it and I knew not to ever ask him again.

    I also never forgot it.

    • #21
    • July 31, 2016, at 9:16 PM PDT
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  22. Trink Coolidge
    Trink Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    TKC1101 :

    Trink:

    TKC1101 : I had an uncle, a gentle man, who passed quite a few years ago. He was from another America.

    He was not a special forces soldier, selected and trained to be highly effective. He was an English teacher who was called, did what he had to do and went home, carrying the memories he could not forget.

    TKC1101. This is so painfully moving. Can you tell us that your uncle found some measure of peace . . . some oasis, even briefly where he found love and caring from family and friends. Did he know you held him in honor in your heart?

    How may we today assist the boys coming back from war zones with PTSS? I know it’s such an overused expression, but truly, it breaks my heart.

    He raised two fine sons and a daughter, his wife adored him, and he managed quite well. He just zoned out at times and tears ran down his cheeks. He was quiet about it and we all respected his need for quiet.

    He talked to me about it once, when I, as a nine year old who had just learned about Iwo Jima asked him what happened. He was quite patient and told me a story that lasted over an hour. He then asked me to remember it and I knew not to ever ask him again.

    I also never forgot it.

    Thank you. I will sleep more peacefully for your kindness in sharing his story.

    • #22
    • July 31, 2016, at 9:39 PM PDT
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  23. Front Seat Cat Member

    Kevin Creighton:

    Doctor Robert:

    Inspiring words but empty. Six citizens may prevent flight 93 from reaching the Capitol, but the WTC still came down and the Pentagon was still struck.

    We weren’t ready for such things. Being attacked on our soil be radical Islam wasn’t even close to being in the awareness of general public on September 10, 2001. What were the big stories back then? China’s manhandling of an EP-3 surveillance plane and the death of Chandra Levy. Despite being blindsided by the attack, Americans rose up and defended themselves with what they had at their disposal.

    The Bush camp was on the job 9 mo. with all the latest info turned over from Clinton. They came in thinking Russia was the bigger problem, and cold war mentality. Intelligence was not communicating with FBI – after the attack, we came up to speed fast – but a lot of new technology and strategy had to be developed quickly – it was. The decision to go to Iraq where Al Qaeda was not, took 2 trillion dollars and many lives, and bogged us down. Now the Syrian mess that never ends. Radical Islam has spread to Asia, Africa, Europe-agree fire power, but shutting down their funding, Internet access, and recruiting help within their own areas will be ongoing -for a long time – they are so brutal, it is probably difficult to stop them.

    • #23
    • August 1, 2016, at 7:26 AM PDT
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  24. Quietpi Member

    I agree that America alone could win because of who we are, and the difference that we alone can make in the rest of the world. But only if “we” choose to fight. But “we” have chosen instead to capitulate at every opportunity – every “red line in the sand.” And so it goes. The current position? Others have said of our nations current position, with only slight hyperbole, “We have to get guns under control before some poor terrorist gets killed.”

    • #24
    • August 1, 2016, at 8:17 AM PDT
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  25. Quietpi Member

    Bryan G. Stephens: Enough fire from the sky would work.

    If you mean air strikes and drone strikes alone, no, it won’t. It’s going to take boots on the ground, in places and at times when appropriate. I don’t mean that the current rot can be ferreted out with conventional warfare, because this is not a conventional war. But just as it was ineffective – even counterproductive – when Clinton resorted to cruise missiles, drones, etc. and Obama is resorting to it, and Clinton will resort to it, the disease will only fester and spread.

    If, however, if you mean it as all-out war, without the stupid restraints (asymmetrical, not conventional), then yes it will work.

    • #25
    • August 1, 2016, at 8:26 AM PDT
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  26. Front Seat Cat Member

    Quietpi:

    Bryan G. Stephens: Enough fire from the sky would work.

    If you mean air strikes and drone strikes alone, no, it won’t. It’s going to take boots on the ground, in places and at times when appropriate. I don’t mean that the current rot can be ferreted out with conventional warfare, because this is not a conventional war. But just as it was ineffective – even counterproductive – when Clinton resorted to cruise missiles, drones, etc. and Obama is resorting to it, and Clinton will resort to it, the disease will only fester and spread.

    If, however, if you mean it as all-out war, without the stupid restraints (asymmetrical, not conventional), then yes it will work.

    The goal of radical Islam is to get us bogged down in a conventional war – resources, money, our soldiers – then they spread out and morph quickly to other places. I read that using new technology – unmanned weaponry and and even the private sector (research and development, and operatives) as well as recruiting undercover to halt their plots and advancement is working – but O was late in the game to see the benefits of this – and most importantly, giving hope to the people who live in these countries goes a long way – incentive to fight back – imagine how many Syrians would go home and rebuild if they could – how long have we been trying to oust Assad and now look – we battle his forces while Russia props them up.

    • #26
    • August 1, 2016, at 8:39 AM PDT
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