Friday, November 04, 2005

VDH Friday

Today's piece from Victor Davis Hanson looks at the global plague of Islamism, and what the world must do to stop it.
...the world — if it is to save its present liberal system of free trade, safe travel, easy and unfettered communications, and growing commitment to constitutional government — must begin seeing radical Islamism as a universal pathology rather than reactions to regional grievances, if it is ever to destroy it materially and refute it ideologically.

Yet the antidote for radical Islam, aside from the promotion of democratization and open economies, is simple. It must be militarily defeated when it emerges to wage organized violence, as in the cases of the Taliban and al Qaeda in Afghanistan, Zarqawi’s terrorists in Iraq, and the various killer cliques in Palestine.

Second, any who tolerate radical Islam should be ostracized. Muslims living in the West must be condemned when they assert that the Jews caused 9/11, or that suicide bombing is a legitimate response to Israel, or that Islamic immigrants’ own unique culture gives them a pass from accustomed assimilation, or that racial and religious affinity should allow tolerance for the hatred that spews forth from madrassas and mosques — before the patience of Western liberalism is exhausted and “the rules of the game” in Tony Blair’s words “change” quite radically and we begin to see mass invitations to leave.

Third, nations that intrigue with jihadists must be identified as the enemies of civilization. We often forget that there are now left only four major nation-states in the world that either by intent or indifference allow radical Islamists to find sanctuary.
A key point is that
we need leaders who have to ability to explain far more cogently and in some detail — rather than merely assert — to the Western public the nature of the threat we face, and how our strategy will prevail.
People (including myself) like to blame the media for the messages that the public receive, but in the end, it is up to our nation's leadership to articulate a clear message about the nature of the challanges that we face.