Political correctness dictates never to label as “crazy” beliefs held
by a culture. Instead, utilize euphemisms such as “unique,”
“intriguing,” or, at worst, “misunderstood.” The Islamic radicals that
just invaded Iraq from Syria hold to the belief that everyone in the
world that does not agree with them should be killed.
Hard to misunderstand that. To paraphrase the old country song, if calling them crazy is wrong, then I don’t want to be right.
then there’s us. After over a decade of failed experiments in
nation-building, there are still calls from some of our leaders for
immediate re-engagement in Iraq. Bombs, troops, helicopters – kill some
sense into ‘em. One measure of insanity is doing the same thing over and
over and expecting a different result. By that metric, where does that
crowd stand on the crazy scale?
It’s safe to say that we are done
nation-building in that part of the world. Fini. What seemed like a
noble but ludicrous proposition – transforming Iraq into a democratic
beacon for the entire Middle East – turned out to be just that. Admit
it, even if you are a Republican, when George W. first unveiled that
plan, you secretly rolled your eyes. It was just so George W.
if we are not looking to nation-build anymore and we are not looking to
topple a government, what is the ultimate goal beyond killing just as
many of them as we can? To feel good? Where are we hoping to be when
that dust settles? Would killing all of the crazies bouncing around in
the back of those Toyota trucks solve anything or accomplish any
long-term American objectives? Our own heritage should be exhumed.
Despite what else political correctness dictates, it’s fair to say we
are a nation founded in Christianity. So we know about Jesus. We know
that his teachings made for a better way of life, but it was his
crucifixion that made a religion. Killing a person tends to do the
opposite to the idea that person represents.
In the Middle East,
we are, and always have been, fighting an idea disguised as insane
people. It’s a simple idea but sometimes those are the most catchy, like
an early Beatles’ tune. It’s not an idea familiar in the Western World,
so we will never understand it. Not totally. We can kill the people who
hold the idea, but in doing so, we’re sanctifying the idea. I mean, 72
virgins is one thing, but 72 virgins and revenge on whoever killed your
family? That’s downright motivational.
What do you do for a part
of the world that has no aspiration other than to get its Jihad on? From
the American experience, the hope should be that they want to Jihad all
over each other, as they did quietly for centuries before we started
buying their oil. Now, that is apparently what they desire again if we
would just let them. Iran, if you think Israel is a problem, let us
introduce you to our little friends.
We are at a point in history
where we can be a peaceful country again. We are possibly one election
away from proceeding with energy independence and our first freedom from
the Middle East in almost three generations – long enough ago that no
one remembers a nation that wasn’t perpetually at war or on the verge of
war. No one else in the world is foolish enough to want to tangle with
our military. Although we can’t impose freedom on the world, it is
finally available to us again.
There are the innocents in Iraq
that will be brutalized by these invaders. But this is their war. We
have tried to fight it for them and that doesn’t work. We’ve learned
that nations aren’t formed through our sacrifice. If they are never
willing to fight, there’s nothing we can do for them in the end anyway.
is the danger of the formation of a terrorist state. Maybe, but let
them get bogged down with trying to govern. Heighten our intelligence,
build an invisible fence around it all and watch it like a hawk, as I’m
sure we do North Korea – a rogue state with nukes. Eventually, as this
terrorist state fights its neighbors over the years, it will forget all
about us. It’s a human tragedy but it’s not ours. We have officially
tried more than we ever should have to fix the unfixable, costing us
thousands of our own sons and daughters and billions of dollars. We are
only as crazy as our inability to learn. The last twenty-five years have
been, to say the least, instructive.
(This and other wolfrum columns can be read at toddwolfrum.com)