Fr. James V. Schall: Sword and Scimitar Is “a Detailed, Well-Researched” and “Most Welcome” Book


I am gratified the GOP still controls the Senate and displeased the Marxist oriented Dems is the majority political party in the House – all be it slim majority. The jury is out on how a divided Congress manages the rule of law in this nation, but if the proven Dem/media lies against President Trump the emerging proof of a lying smear campaign (HERE, HERE, HERE & HERE) against Justice Brett Kavanaugh is any indication – government gridlock is in the future for at least two-years.

But moving on … It is time to refresh our memory on just how dangerous Islam is to Western Culture. I’ve been reading Robert Spencer’s new book “The History of Jihad: From Muhammad to ISIS” – Book Review HERE.

 

And now another book exposing Islam’s history and true nature is out by Raymond Ibrahim: “Sword and Scimitar: Fourteen Centuries of War between Islam and the West”. After reading the book review on Ibrahim’s blog, I’ll picking that book up as well.

 

JRH 11/7/18

In this current state of media censorship & defunding, consider chipping in a few bucks for enjoying this Blog.

Please Support NCCR

*************************

Fr. James V. Schall: Sword and Scimitar Is “a Detailed, Well-Researched” and “Most Welcome” Book

 

By Raymond Ibrahim 

11/07/2018

RaymondIbrahim.com

 

Fr. James V. Schall during his final lecture at Georgetown University in 2012

 

James V. Schall, S.J. — a longtime professor of political philosophy at Georgetown University and author of On Islam — recently reviewed my book, Sword and Scimitar.  First published in the Catholic World Report, and titled, “On the Purpose of Islam: A Review of Raymond Ibrahim’s Sword and Scimitar,” it follows:

 

“Unlike most military histories—which no matter how fascinating are ultimately academic—this [book] offers correctives; it sets the much discussed historical record between these two civilizations straight and, in so doing, demonstrates once and for all that a Muslim hostility for the West is not an aberration but a continuation of Islamic history.” — Raymond Ibrahim, Sword and Scimitar: Fourteen Centuries of War between Islam and the West (New York: De Capo Press, 2018), xvi

 

“For unlike Manzikert (1071), which was more a Turkic victory, the conquest of Constantinople (1453) had greater significance for all Muslims. Even in Egypt, where the Ottoman’s chief rivals the Mamluks reigned, the ‘good tidings were proclaimed and Cairo decorated’ to celebrate ‘this greatest of conquests.’ The Sharif of Mecca wrote to Muhammed (II), calling him ‘the one who has aided Islam and the Muslims, the Sultan of all kings and sultans,’ and—further underscoring the idea that conquest over infidels is the epitome of Islamic piety—‘the resuscitator of the Prophet’s sharia.’” — Raymond Ibrahim, Sword and Scimitar, 247.

 

I.

 

Some things we prefer not to know. Among these, it often seems, is an accurate account of the origins, extent, and the means of expansion of Islam over its now 1200 year history. During this time period, the armies of Islam managed to conquer a good fifth of the world’s geography and population. This growth and expansion show few signs of abating, in spite of Islam’s expulsion from Spain in the fifteenth century and from the Balkans in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The main reason that Islam is not larger is because—and only because—it was defeated in some major historic battles. In recent years, with its high birth-rate and its immigration, Islam has a new lease on life in the West, particularly in Europe, from which it had been turned back in the eighth century at the battle of Tours and in the fifteenth at Vienna. Both Europe and America are now dotted with mosques in hundreds of places, the construction of which is usually financed by Saudi Arabia.

 

Sword & Scimitar bk jk

 

In this riveting account of the history of Islam’s military accomplishments, Raymond Ibrahim shows that Islam has followed a consistent policy that has combined politics, war, terror, and religion. Its purpose was, and remains, essentially religious, however unwilling we might be, because of our own presuppositions, to grant that fact. This purpose follows a reading of the Koran as Islam’s central guide and ultimate justification as the message of Allah to mankind. It also manifests the core reason why Islam, throughout its history, has sought to expand. Other motives—economic, ethnic, and political—were also present, but this religious motive was at its core. Until that core is rejected by enough individual Muslims, it will continue to inspire, , by ever varying means—sometimes peaceful, sometimes violent—this drive to conquer what is not yet under Islamic control.

 

What is difficult for many to understand is the persistence of a singular purpose, carried on century after century: the submission of the world to Allah. Both those who believe in nothing and those who believe in other gods are tempted to think such a concept to be preposterous or impossible. Yet this purpose is what motivated and inspired the Muslim caliphs, beys, emirs, sheiks, merchants, and peasants, whether Sunni or Shiite, to continue their mission no matter how hopeless it seemed at first.

 

This expansion involved massive genocides and slaughters in various parts of the world and in different eras, about which Ibrahim gives a detailed and often graphic account. But such shocking means, deliberately undertaken, do not obviate this prior religious purpose. Indeed, this religious purpose is part of the rationale of the expansion, which used whatever means that worked. The philosophical voluntarism that finally explained Muslim actions came into being to justify the use of violence in religion. As explained by al Ghazelli in the eleventh century, Allah could will the opposite of what he willed; everything depends on Allah’s will that is bound to no permanent truth.

 

II.

 

To understand Islam, it is necessary to follow its history, which is inspired by the Koran and its interpretations. Thus we have both what the Koran teaches and the historic record of what Islam did following upon those teachings. Noted historian Victor Davis Hanson, in the “Foreword” to Ibrahim’s book, gives a brief list of its major theses: 1) “Islamic armies saw themselves as expansionary and messianic, eager to engage the West and to annex its territory and convert its people”; 2) The wars against the West were not seen primarily as localized but “as religious rather than national or ethnic…their warring against the Westerners was so seen as mostly a monolithic struggle against Christendom rather than against particular European States”; 3) Islamic leaders have seen Christianity as inherently against Islam; 4) Muslims in Western states had much more freedom than Christians in Muslim states.

The book is a detailed, well-researched account of the major battles between Islam and the West. The same methods of warfare, conquest, and imposition of Muslim law occur again and again. The Crusades were not signs of Christian aggressiveness but of a final, usually desperate effort to protect themselves from Muslim incursions. Two things are striking in this presentation. The first is that the positive use of violence is considered a legitimate way to deal with those deemed as enemies of Islam. With almost monotonous regularity this factor is seen in every battle and its aftermath. It can be, from an Islamic perspective, justified from Koranic verses and from the historical record. The only time a Muslim doubts his faith is when he is soundly defeated in battle. But military defeat is only temporary. As long as the Koran is read, Islam will rise again. Islam, we see again and again, is both patient and unforgiving.

 

The second striking thing is the extent and prevalence of slavery, of slave markets, of the need of slaves to make possible the kind of life that Muslim leaders carved out for themselves. Most Americans are aware that slavery existed in their own country. What is not so widely known is the place of Arab middle men who were the slave brokers for both black and white slaves. Though slavery is found in many cultures throughout history, it was a constant element in Muslim life. And the slaves were not mostly black, but white; the choice slaves were acquired by raids along the European coasts or as the booty of conquest.

 

Near the end of the book, Ibrahim recounts the experience of the early American founders with Islam. The first American war, some might be surprised to learn, was with the Barbary Pirates in North Africa. The United States paid regular and enormous ransom fees to recover Americans held as hostages. Ibrahim cites the letter that John Adams and Thomas Jefferson wrote to Congress on March 28, 1786:

 

We took the liberty to make some inquiries concerning the grounds of their (Muslim) pretentions to make war against nations who had done them no injury, and observed that we considered all mankind as our friends who had done us no wrong, nor had given us any provocation. The (Muslim) ambassador answered us that it was founded on the laws of their Prophet, that was written in their Koran, that all nations who should not have acknowledged their authority were sinners, that it was their right and duty to make war on them wherever they could be found and to make slaves of all they could take as prisoners, and that every Musselman who should be slain in battle was sure to go to Paradise (284).

 

This analysis of Adams and Jefferson sketches and summarizes the essential theses of this book, which draws out in detail the record and working out of the Muslim practice of warfare and governance as seen embodied in its history.

 

III.

 

The book leaves us with several questions. Can one really be a faithful Muslim and not accept this history and its rationale? Can non-Muslims rest content that this religious warfare in various forms will not be unleashed on them whenever the opportunity arises? As Ibrahim points out, a Muslim is free to say in public that he will not practice violence provided that he secretly agrees in his heart that he will follow, when he can, the Koran and what it says about such violence.

 

A further issue is whether an accurate knowledge of Islamic warfare and history is not somehow illiberal, unfair, or, yes, provocative. Those who maintain, in spite of all evidence, that Islam is a religion of peace do neither Islam nor themselves any favor. We honor Islam best by judging it first by its own standards and purposes. In this sense, Ibrahim’s book is most welcome. It does not pretend that the record of what Islam does and says of itself is something else other than it is. And no one denies, of course, that Islam is composed of many internal struggles both of its theology and of its politics.

 

In many ways, Islam has been its own worst enemy. Efforts to democratize Islam have taught many Muslims how to use democratic processes for their long term goals. While Islam approves of conquest by arms, it does not disdain any other way to power if it can finally impose its law (Sharia). While there are no Muslim armies today capable of defeating any major power in the field, the use of terrorist tactics can, if unchecked, still effectively disrupt and even weaken any modern society.

 

IV.

 

In Belloc’s 1900 book Miniatures of French History we find a chapter entitled “The Breaking of Islam,” which is about the Battle at Poitiers and Tours in 732, a seminal battle that Ibrahim likewise covers. It was a battle that saved France and probably Europe. To explain why Islam was in France in the first place, Belloc wrote:

 

Mahomet, acquainted with the Faith, selected from manifold Christian truth what few points seemed good to him, and composed a new heresy alive with equality and the reduction of doctrine to the least compass. He denied the Incarnation and left the Eucharist aside. Mahomet had vision and heard divine commands. Stones spoke to him and he perceived the glories of heaven. But more than this…he was filled with a command to teach what he had seen and known. He must remake men. For this mighty task he found two mighty levers—brotherhood and simplicity—and to these he joined the delight of arms.

 

Belloc, as Ibrahim also notes, was far ahead of his time in seeing the meaning and scope of Islamic thought and history. Belloc paid the honor to Islam of taking its religious side, its history, and its messianic purposes seriously. He could do this because he could understand the call of its faith. This understanding of Islam’s faith is what is important in Sword and Scimitar. We cannot read Muslim history as if it is explained by the liberal mind that cannot (or will not) understand the call of such a faith over time. Christians have been mostly driven out of Muslim lands. They have suffered attacks and killings in our day, the same kind of atrocities that occurred again and again in the past. We pay little or no attention. Those most eager to dialogue with representatives of Islam usually do not know its history. They cannot understand why this dialogue results mostly in an effort to settle more and more of Mohammed’s followers in lands that Islam could not conquer before by arms.

 

Belloc, in his book The Crusades—in a section on the Battle at the Horns of Hattin (1187), after the crushing of the Crusaders’ last hold in the Holy places—said that if Islam ever gains the power again, it will do exactly as it did before. He wrote this in the 1930s; by the second decade of the 21st century, it is clear that he was right. Ibrahim’s book provides the background to verify this thesis.

 

Islam cannot reform itself by denying its own history and the methods to achieve its successes. And it cannot be Islam and deny what is in the Koran. Wherever the Koran is read carefully and seriously, the drive to world submission to Allah will reappear and continue. Sometimes it will be defeated; at other times it will succeed. Islam is content to wait, but it always is prodding. It understands that its immediate enemy is the West—not China or India or Russia. It has every reason to believe that it is gradually but definitely making inroads into Europe, often without the need of bloodshed. It has not repudiated terror, but it has realized the possibility of using Western political means to bring the Sharia into effect in any given city or country. If it can expand by democratic means as well as with terror and war, so much the better. The end remains the same–the conquest of the world for Allah, the mission assigned to it from the beginning.

 

Islam today is divided into various factions and dozens of states, some struggling against others. It has no final authority of interpretation of its texts; it has no unified army. The recent defeat of ISIS on the ground made clear that its expansion might now use other means. Historically, Christians and non-Christians falling under the control of Muslim majorities have been required to pay a fine and accept second class citizenship, convert, or die. Peace for Islam means the condition brought about when everyone is Muslim. Until then, a state of war with non-Muslims de facto exists. Again, the purpose of Islam is the subjection of all men and nations to Allah. Without this ultimate goal, Islam is not Islam. One cannot but admire this religious impetus, while, at the same time, doing one’s best to see that it never succeeds—both for the good of non-Muslims and Muslims alike. Sword and Scimitar offers a challenging and direct explanation why these things make sense.

____________________

© 2018 · RaymondIbrahim.com ·

 

 

 

About

 

RAYMOND IBRAHIM is a widely published author, public speaker, and Middle East and Islam specialist.  His books include Sword and Scimitar: Fourteen Centuries of War between Islam and the West (Da Capo, 2018), Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians (Regnery, 2013), and The Al Qaeda Reader (Doubleday, 2007).

 

Ibrahim’s writings, translations, and observations have appeared in a variety of publications, including the New York Times Syndicate, CNN, LA Times, Fox News, Financial Times, Jerusalem Post, United Press International, USA Today, Washington Post, Washington Times, and Weekly Standard; scholarly journals, including the Almanac of Islamism, Chronicle of Higher Education, Hoover Institution’s Strategika, Jane’s Islamic Affairs Analyst, Middle East Quarterly, and Middle East Review of International Affairs; and popular websites, including American Thinker, Bloomberg, Breitbart, Christian Post, Daily Caller, NewsMax, National Review Online, PJ Media, and World Magazine. He has contributed chapters to several anthologies and has been translated into dozens of languages.

 

Ibrahim guest lectures at universities, including the National Defense Intelligence College, has briefed governmental agencies, such as U.S. Strategic Command and the Defense Intelligence Agency, provides expert testimony for Islam-related lawsuits, and has testified before Congress regarding the conceptual failures that dominate American discourse concerning Islam and the worsening plight of Egypt’s Christian Copts.

 

Among other media, he has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, PBS, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, and NPR; he has done hundreds of radio interviews and two courses for Prager University, each of which has been viewed over a million times on YouTube.

 

Ibrahim’s dual-background—born and raised in the U.S. by Egyptian parents born and raised in the Middle East—has provided him with unique advantages, from equal fluency in English and Arabic, to an equal understanding of the Western and Middle Eastern mindsets, positioning him to explain the latter to the former. His interest in Islamic civilization was first piqued when he began visiting the Middle East as a child in the 1970s. Interacting and conversing with the locals throughout the decades has provided him with an intimate appreciation for that part of the world, complementing his academic training.

 

After a brief athletic career—including winning the 1993 NPC Los Angeles Bodybuilding Championship as a teenager—Raymond went on to receive his B.A. and M.A. (both in History, focusing on the ancient and medieval Near East, with dual-minors in Philosophy and Literature) from California State University, Fresno. There he studied closely with noted military-historian Victor Davis Hanson. He also took graduate courses at Georgetown University’s Center for Contemporary Arab Studies—including classes on the history, politics, and economics of the Arab world—and studied Medieval Islam and Semitic languages at Catholic University of America. His M.A. thesis examined an early military encounter between Islam and Byzantium based on arcane Arabic and Greek texts.

 

Ibrahim’s resume includes serving as an Arabic language and regional specialist at the Near East Section of the Library of Congress, where he was often contacted by and provided information to defense and intelligence personnel involved in the fields of counterterrorism and area studies, as well as the Congressional Research Service; and serving as associate director of the Middle East Forum, a Philadelphia think tank.

 

He also often functions as a journalist and has been a Media Fellow at the Hoover Institution and a CBN News analyst.  His knowledge of Arabic and familiarity with Middle Eastern sources have enabled him to offer breaking news.  Days before the Obama administration blamed an anti-Islamic movie for Muslim uprisings against a U.S. consul and an embassy in Libya and Egypt respectively, Ibrahim showed that the demonstrations were pre-planned and unrelated to the movie.  Similarly, he was first to expose an Arabic-language Saudi fatwa that called for the destruction of any Christian church found on the Arabian Peninsula.

 

Raymond Ibrahim is currently the Judith Friedman Rosen Writing Fellow at the Middle East Forum.

 

Intro to JWR Article by Victor Davis Hanson


The paradoxes of the Mueller investigation

 

John R. Houk, Editor

February 22, 2018

 

I find it very disturbing the U.S. Press (aka Lame Stream Media, Leftist Mainstream Media & so on) is so hot in Trump-hatred that they would rather distribute fake news or inflammatory opinions too often based on lies and/or twisted facts to incite Impeachment Proceedings against President Trump.

 

There has not been ONE reported connection between President Trump colluding with the Russians in the 2016 election cycle. NOT ONE!

 

HOWEVER, there has ample Congressional testimony of Dems (Crooked Hillary & Associates as well as Odious Obama & Associates) colluding the Russians over the 2016 election cycle.

 

As bad, some RINOs conspired with the Clinton Crime Syndicate (aka Clinton Foundation) to make some nefarious bucks by clearing the way for 20% of American uranium to end up into the hands of Russians. AND Mueller as the then FBI Director did nothing to alert the public of the conspiracy, indicating he might somehow be in on the Uranium One crime conspiracy.

 

Where is the U.S. Press on informing the public about more tangible crimes against the rule of law by these wicked Dems? It is beginning to feel like collusion with these characters: Obama, Obama’s upper echelon staff, Crooked Hillary & staff (both State Department & Campaign), Slick Willy (aka former President Clinton), the usual suspects of Slick Willy’s staff & associates, FBI upstairs staff, Intel Agencies of numerous alphabet acronyms AND various Dems still in Office.

 

Larry O’Connor interviewing Dr. Sebastian Gorka on WMAL radio about FBI-7th Floor (2/13/18)

 

 

JRH 2/22/18

Please Support NCCR

********************

The paradoxes of the Mueller investigation

 

By Victor Davis Hanson

Feb. 22, 2018

Jewish World Review

 

Special counsel Robert Mueller has indicted 13 Russian nationals for allegedly conspiring to sow confusion in the 2016 presidential election. The chance of extraditing any of the accused from Vladimir Putin’s Russia is zero.

 

Some of the Russians’ Keystone Cops efforts to disrupt the election favored Donald Trump (as well as Bernie Sanders). Yet Mueller’s team made it clear that the Russians neither colluded with any U.S. citizens nor had any material effect on the election’s outcome.

 

But from here on out, there will be ironies, paradoxes and unintended consequences with just about everything Mueller does.

 

Is it now time to prosecute foreigners for attempting to interfere with a U.S. election? If so, then surely Christopher Steele, the author of the Fusion GPS dossier, is far more culpable and vulnerable than the 13 bumbling Russians.

 

Steele is not a U.S. citizen. Steele colluded with Russian interests in compiling his lurid dossier about Donald Trump. Steele did not register as a foreign agent. And Steele was paid by Hillary Clinton’s campaign to find dirt on political rival Trump and his campaign.

 

In other words, Steele’s position is far worse than that of the Russians for at a variety of reasons. One, he is easily extraditable while the Russians are not. Two, his efforts really did affect the race, given that the dossier was systematically leaked to major media and served as a basis for the U.S. government to spy on American citizens. Three, unlike with the Russians, no one disputes that American citizens — Hillary Clinton, members of the Democratic National Committee, and anti-Trump partisan Glenn Simpson and his Fusion GPS team — colluded by paying for Steele’s work.

 

Mueller’s team has also leveraged a guilty plea from former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn for making false statements to FBI investigators. If the Flynn case is now the Mueller standard, then we know that a number of high-ranking officials are vulnerable to such legal exposure.

 

Department of Justice official Bruce Ohr deliberately omitted on federal disclosure forms the fact that his wife, an expert on Russia, worked on the Fusion GPS dossier.

 

Steele himself probably lied to the FBI went he claimed he had not leaked the dossier’s contents to the media.

 

Hillary Clinton aides Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills likely lied to FBI investigator Peter Strzok (who had also interviewed Flynn) when they claimed they had no idea that Clinton was using a private and illegal email server until the story went public. In fact, Abedin and Mills had communicated with Clinton over the same server — as did then-President Barack Obama, who likewise denied that he knew about the improper server.

 

Former FBI Director James Comey likely lied to Congress when he claimed that his exoneration of Clinton came after he had interviewed her. We now know from documents that he drafted a statement about the conclusion of the investigation even before he met with her.

 

As far as obstruction charges go, Mueller has other possible targets. Former Attorney General Loretta Lynch met secretly with Bill Clinton on a jet parked on a tarmac in Phoenix shortly before the Justice Department closed the probe of Hillary Clinton and chose not to pursue charges against her. Comey said Lynch asked him not to use the word “investigation” when discussing the Clinton email probe. Text messages between Strzok and fellow FBI official Lisa Page suggest that Lynch knew in advance about the conclusions Comey would reach in the investigation.

 

What is going on?

 

Mueller is under enormous pressure to find collusion between the Trump team and Russia, or to find that the Trump team obstructed justice by trying to hide such collusion. But neither likely happened. Mueller was appointed at a time of national hysteria, brought on by partisan journalism based on a leaked dossier — itself a product of a discredited British agent working with Russian sources while being paid by the Clinton campaign.

 

Worse still, the effort to hide the origins and the use of that dossier to obtain court permission to spy on American citizens may be a classic case of obstruction of justice.

 

Mueller’s existential problem has been with him from the start. Due to the shenanigans of his discredited friend Comey and a rabid media, he was appointed to investigate crimes that did not exist. But if they did exist, collusion and obstruction were committed by those associated with the Clinton campaign and even by members of the Obama administration.

 

Investigating any possible crimes committed by members of the Clinton campaign or the Obama administration apparently is taboo, given the exalted status of both. But every time Mueller seeks to find incidental wrongdoing by those around Trump, he only makes the case stronger that behavior by those involved in the Clinton campaign and the Obama administration should be investigated.

 

If such matters are not treated in an unbiased manner, we are not a nation of equality under the law, but a banana republic masquerading as a democracy.

________________

© 1997- 2018 Jewish World Review

 

About JWR

 

JWR is a free magazine published five days a week on the World Wide Web of interest to people of faith and those interested in learning more about contemporary Judaism from Jews who take their religion seriously.

 

Our inaugural editorial is also our mission statement.

 

Readers, individuals wishing to submit an article on “spec,” or make a tax deductible donation and those seeking advertising rates may contact JWR by email or by calling (718) 972-9241. Please note that all correspondence with JWR remains our property and may be used accordingly.

 

READ THE REST

 

Support JWR budget needs

 

A hard rain is going to fall


road-2-wwiii

Undoubtedly the gloom and doom prediction of an imminent explosion of WWIII (or WWIV – depending on who you read) is about to bust out. I came across a Victor Davis Hanson essay on the subject that the Jewish World Review correctly calls thought provoking.

 

JRH 9/22/16

Please Support NCCR

*******************

A hard rain is going to fall

By Victor Davis Hanson

Sept. 22, 2016

Jewish World Review

 

This summer, President Obama was often golfing. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were promising to let the world be. The end of summer seemed sleepy, the world relatively calm.

 

The summer of 1914 in Europe also seemed quiet. But on July 28, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was assassinated in Sarajevo by Gavrilo Princip with help from his accomplices, fellow Serbian separatists. That isolated act sparked World War I.

 

In the summer of 1939, most observers thought Adolf Hitler was finally through with his serial bullying. Appeasement supposedly had satiated his once enormous territorial appetites. But on Sept. 1, Nazi Germany unexpectedly invaded Poland and touched off World War II, which consumed some 60 million lives.

 

Wars often seem to come out of nowhere, as unlikely events ignite long-simmering disputes into global conflagrations.

 

The instigators often are weaker attackers who foolishly assume that more powerful nations wish peace at any cost, and so will not react to opportunistic aggression.

 

Unfortunately, our late-summer calm of 2016 has masked a lot of festering tensions that are now coming to a head — largely due to disengagement by a supposedly tired United States.

 

In contrast, war, unlike individual states, does not sleep.

 

Russia has been massing troops on its border with Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin apparently believes that Europe is in utter disarray and assumes that President Obama remains most interested in apologizing to foreigners for the past evils of the United States. Putin is wagering that no tired Western power could or would stop his reabsorption of Ukraine — or the Baltic states next. Who in hip Amsterdam cares what happens to faraway Kiev?

 

Iran swapped American hostages for cash. An Iranian missile narrowly missed a U.S. aircraft carrier not long ago. Iranians hijacked an American boat and buzzed our warships in the Persian Gulf. There are frequent promises from Tehran to destroy either Israel, America or both. So much for the peace dividend of the “Iran deal.”

 

North Korea is more than just delusional. Recent nuclear tests and missile launches toward Japan suggest that North Korean strongman Kim Jong-un actually believes that he could win a war — and thereby gain even larger concessions from the West and from his Asian neighbors.

 

Radical Islamists likewise seem emboldened to try more attacks on the premise that Western nations will hardly respond with overwhelming power. The past weekend brought pipe bombings in Manhattan and New Jersey as well as a mass stabbing in a Minnesota mall — and American frustration.

 

Europe and the United States have been bewildered by huge numbers of largely young male migrants from the war-torn Middle East. Political correctness has paralyzed Western leaders from even articulating the threat, much less replying to it.

 

Instead, the American government appears more concerned with shutting down the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, ensuring that no administration official utters the words “Islamic terror,” and issuing warnings to Americans not to lash out due to their supposedly innate prejudices.

 

Aggressors are also encouraged by vast cutbacks in the U.S. defense budget. The lame-duck Obama presidency, lead-from-behind policies and a culturally and racially divided America reflect voter weariness with overseas commitments.

 

It would be a mistake to assume that war is impossible because it logically benefits no one, or is outdated in our sophisticated 21st century, or would be insane in a world of nuclear weapons.

 

Human nature is unchanging and remains irrational. Evil is eternal. Unfortunately, appeasement is often seen by thugs not as magnanimity to be reciprocated but as timidity to be exploited.

 

Someone soon will have to tell the North Koreans that a stable world order cannot endure its frequent missile launches and nuclear detonations.

 

Someone could remind Putin that the former Soviet republics have a right to self-determination.

 

Someone might inform the Chinese that no one can plop down artificial islands and military bases to control commercial sea lanes.

 

Someone might make it clear to radical Islamic terrorists that there is a limit to Western patience with their chronic bombing, murdering and destruction.

 

The problem is that there is no other “someone” (especially not the United Nations or the European Union) with the requisite power and authority except the United States. But for a long time America has done more than its fair share of international policing — and its people are tired of costly dragon-slaying abroad.

 

The result is that at this late date, the tough medicine of restoring long-term deterrence is as almost as dangerous as the disease of continual short-term appeasement.

 

Obama apparently assumes he can leave office as a peacemaker before his appeased chickens come home to roost in violent fashion. He has assured us that the world has never been calmer and quieter.

 

Others said the same thing in the last calm summer weeks of 1914 and 1939.

 

War clouds are gathering. A hard rain is soon going to fall.

___________________

Victor Davis Hanson, a classicist and military historian, is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a recipient of the 2007 National Humanities Medal.

© 2016 by the Board of Trustees of Leland Stanford Junior University

About JWR

 

JWR is a free magazine published five days a week on the World Wide Web of interest to people of faith and those interested in learning more about contemporary Judaism from Jews who take their religion seriously.

 

Our inaugural editorial is also our mission statement.

 

Readers, individuals wishing to submit an article on “spec,” or make a tax deductible donation and those seeking advertising rates may contact JWR by email or by calling (718) 972-9241. Please note that all correspondence with JWR remains our property and may be used accordingly.

 

A FRIENDLY BUT SERIOUS REQUEST TO THOSE WHO PASS JWR MATERIAL ON TO OTHERS.

You are always welcome to spread the word. We encourage it! But in the future, please email your friends with just an article’s title a paragraph or two and the URL (web address) instead of  READ THE REST

 

 

 

The War Against Palin Goes On and On and …


Palin Targeted by Left

Victor Davis Hanson is educated in the Classics and Military History. Hanson is also a writer of the Right who is often described as a Neoconservative. If there is anything that is sure is that Hanson is one of those rare American intellectuals that has not succumbed his intellect to Leftist ideology that tarnishes American Culture.

 

Hanson writes with clarity on the idiocy of the Dems and Leftists heaping Goebbels-type propaganda disparaging Sarah Palin.

 

JRH 1/19/11 (Hat Tip: Conservatives 4 Palin)