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Arnold Ahlert / Sep. 11, 2014

9/11 – Utterly Anathema to Progressive Ideology

On September 11, 2001 the forces of radical Islam perpetrated the worst domestic attack in the history of the nation. Thirteen years later, the reasons for that attack remain utterly anathema to progressive ideology. Nothing reveals the utter bankruptcy of the progressive love affair with moral relativism, non-judgmentalism and multiculturalism better than 9/11. For the briefest of moments, it became utterly impossible to convince the American public that evil is in the eye of the beholder, that we mustn’t reach any larger conclusions about those who killed nearly 3,000 Americans, or that Islamo-fascism and American exceptionalism have a more or less equal status in the panoply of world cultures. For the briefest of moments, American were snapped out of their self-absorbed and self-inflicted torpor, their pettiness, and their reflexive ideology. For the briefest of moments, the nation was united by a steely resolve, borne first out of fear, but morphing quickly into righteous anger.

On September 11, 2001 the forces of radical Islam perpetrated the worst domestic attack in the history of the nation. Thirteen years later, the reasons for that attack remain utterly anathema to progressive ideology.

Nothing reveals the utter bankruptcy of the progressive love affair with moral relativism, non-judgmentalism and multiculturalism better than 9/11. For the briefest of moments, it became utterly impossible to convince the American public that evil is in the eye of the beholder, that we mustn’t reach any larger conclusions about those who killed nearly 3,000 Americans, or that Islamo-fascism and American exceptionalism have a more or less equal status in the panoply of world cultures. For the briefest of moments, American were snapped out of their self-absorbed and self-inflicted torpor, their pettiness, and their reflexive ideology. For the briefest of moments, the nation was united by a steely resolve, borne first out of fear, but morphing quickly into righteous anger.

It is the remembrance of those attitudes for one day each year that scares the hell out of the American Left.

Thus they set about undermining those “threats,” and sad to say, they have largely succeeded. A large swath of the American public is now permanently disengaged, many of the things that divide us are laughably petty, and the contempt that most people demonstrate for those with whom they politically disagree, is palpably thick.

Worse, Americans are “war weary,” even as those who would exterminate us are anything but.

Maybe it’s time Americans realized that engendering such war weariness has been one of the American Left’s greatest triumphs. Maybe it’s time they realized the elevation of such despicable concepts as the Rules of Engagement, the “winning hearts and minds” strategy, a maniacal obsession with preventing civilian casualties even if it endangers American troops in the process, and scheduled troop withdrawals, are no accident. From Vietnam to the present, the American Left has made it Job One to eliminate the word “victory” from our wartime lexicon. And absent any hope of victory, a steely resolve becomes impossible to maintain.

And so we haven’t. We send American men and women into harm’s way only to make an utter mockery of their achievements. Fifty-eight thousand troops paid the ultimate price in Vietnam, only to see the American Left hand the entire Southeast Asian Peninsula over to the Communists, who created a million Boat People refugees and executed three million Cambodians, Laotians and Vietnamese. The surviving soldiers who returned home were treated like pariahs and called “baby killers.” Adding insult to injury, Hollywood made several movies depicting Vietnam vets as troubled time bombs waiting to explode.

To this day, the Left considers America’s defeat in Vietnam their greatest victory.

Fast forward to Afghanistan and Iraq, and the same template eventually emerged, even as the Left became more adept at concealing their contempt for the American military. “Baby killers” became “I support the troops, but not the war,” Afghanistan temporarily became the “good war” for no other reason than to contrast it with the “bad war” in Iraq, and the slogan, “Bush lied, people died” – a monstrous and throughly discredited lie in and of itself – became the vehicle the Left used to reignite a war weariness among Americans that is as dangerous as it is ill-advised.

As a result, it is groups like ISIS, Al Qaeda, Islamic Jihad, al-Nusrah, Boko Haram, al-Shabab and countless other Islamic terrorist organizations that are now imbued with a steely resolve, even as the march of technology ensures that a critical marriage between that resolve and that technology awaits. Yet even as that potentially disastrous reality presents itself, we are assured that there will be no American “boots on the ground,” no matter how deeply the threat metastasizes. Those who even suggest otherwise are dismissed as “neo-cons,” “warmongers,” or “imperialists.”

Spare me. And spare me the notion that if the Middle East isn’t willing to clean up its own act, we shouldn’t do the heavy lifting ourselves. That’s a wonderful idea – provided one is willing to live with the consequences. Ignoring the scope of terror is essentially what we did during the Clinton administration, despite several major terror attacks that occurred. These included the Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia, the U.S. Embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, the bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen – and the initial attempt to destroy the Word Trade Center. Throw in Clinton’s numerous refusals to capture Osama Bin Laden, based largely on the “law enforcement” approach to international terror, and it’s clear to see why the Islamists were encouraged to believe America was a “paper tiger.”

Following 9/11, it didn’t take long for the American Left to begin blaming Bush for “allowing” it to happen, because a presidential daily briefing warned the administration that terrorists were planning a major attack. Yet one need only imagine the alternative scenario to realize how disingenuous such criticisms truly were. Imagine Bush calling a major news conference and announcing U.S. troops would be going to Afghanistan to confront a potential threat to America being coordinated by a group named al Qaeda that virtually no one had heard of at the time. Does anyone seriously believe the same leftists who blame Bush for inaction would have applauded such a move? Or would they have called him an “irresponsible cowboy” as they did during the 2004 presidential campaign, when Democrat candidates Howard Dean, John Edwards and John Kerry decided that an anti-war platform utterly inimical to America’s national security interests was preferable to standing behind Bush – and American troops in harm’s way?

Question: if Middle East nations won’t defend their own interests and the Obama administration is incapable of forming a coalition to destroy ISIS, do we simply walk away from the job? Answer: only if you’re naive enough to believe what’s happening “over there” is going to stay over there.

It is apparent that Americans need constant reminding this nation is referred to as the Great Satan by those who constantly remind us that they will do anything they can to bring America to its knees. And while it is good the public has expressed a hearty support for “striking” ISIS, it remains unclear whether they understand that airstrikes alone will likely be insufficient to accomplish the much-needed task of breaking the enemy’s will, which is the ultimate prerequisite for achieving victory and discouraging jihadist wannabes.

That last part is critical. The fecklessness of the current administration has allowed “Jihad Chic,” as in idea that joining a group like ISIS is the ultimate antidote for a meaningless life, to flourish. And until it is made completely clear that joining ISIS or any other terrorist organization is a one-way ticket to the graveyard, it will continue to do so.

Unfortunately, the American Left believes precisely the opposite. They believe the more jihadists we kill, the more it encourages the wannabes to join their ranks. Perhaps nothing illustrates the disconnect between our current infatuation with politically correct warfare and the righteous ruthlessness of those who prosecuted WWII better than that. Those leaders and the Greatest Generation that followed them into battle weren’t marinated in the kind of psycho-babble that advocates meeting head-choppers and baby-killers “halfway” in the hopes that a mutual understanding will emerge. We lost more than 100 coalition soldiers in Afghanistan before our “enlightened” commanders determined that unarmed coalition troops cohabiting with armed Afghan trainees – in order to “build trust” – was a monumentally stupid idea.

Why do we embrace such monumentally stupid ideas? The American Left wants us to be loved and, as this president has so amply demonstrated, they are more than willing to apologize for the “sins” of a misbegotten America to garner that affection. And that is exactly why, even as the bodies remained buried under the smoldering rubble where the World Trade Center once stood, the hand-wringers were obsessed with one question: why do they hate us?

I didn’t care then, and I don’t care now. Furthermore I would contend such questions are not only a luxury for those who apparently feel protected enough to ponder them, but one that has prolonged the fight against Islamic extremism. And if that fight comes to the nearest American shopping mall, city square – or college campus, where such “high-mindedness” invariably flourishes – such luxuries will be seen for the bankrupt diversions they truly are.

Does it have to come to that? I certainly hope not, but even as I write this,  our border remains a sieve, our commitment to defeating ISIS remains questionable, and the poisonous political correctness that allowed our intelligence community to give Boston Bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev a pass despite warnings from the Russians – following the pass they gave Maj. Nidal Hasan, whose atrocity still remains labeled “workplace violence” to this day – does not bode well.

On June 19, 1879, Union General William Tecumseh Sherman told the graduating class of the Michigan Military Academy that “War is hell.” What too many Americans don’t want to understand is that war must be hell, or we will be forever doomed to the kind of half-hearted commitments that not only prolong it, but endanger this nation in the process. Those who envision any future negotiations – other than unconditional surrender–with an enemy that embraces nihilism to the point of armageddon, are naive. It is a naiveté that could literally blow up in our faces if we are foolish enough to abide it.

Memories fade after 13 years. Our resolve must be reinvigorated. Love is a beautiful thing, but it is no substitute for the mortal fear that must be sown into the hearts of our enemies. If we don’t break their will, they will certainly break ours.

© 2014 The Patriot Post.

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