The world is not quite as upside down as many of us might believe. After-all, it isn’t just today that we find ourselves fighting evil. It is also not all of a sudden that the world is facing war.
It is only that it has been so long since the last do or die conflict, which ended with the Second World War, that we have forgotten what it means to fight for our survival against an implacable enemy.
The world is neither a better nor safer place today, than it was some 60 years ago. And it never really was. We only believed that we were making progress because young men weren’t going off to war, with the exception of Vietnam in the late 60’s and early 70’s. And even with Vietnam, it was a war of choice, rather than a war of necessity.
But; away from the North American and the Western European context, war has been waged all around the world, and has never really stopped, even after the end of World War Two. It is just that war never reached our shores.
Fighting the Soviet Union during the Cold War, was a war of necessity. However; the battles were fought between surrogates. And not directly between the two major antagonists. And when push came to shove, as it sometimes did, and the super powers had reason to square off, such as during the Cuban missile crisis; we all shuddered. And it is time to shudder again. Perhaps even more so.
The enemy we face today subscribes to a religious and cultural mind-set, so alien to what the people who live in secular democracies can imagine, that it is nigh impossible to understand just how evil this enemy is.
We see Islamic parents sending their children into the streets to attack professional Israeli soldiers and their tanks, and can’t get our minds around how perverse this is.
We see Islamic parents rejoicing when their children blow themselves up, in order to blow up the children of other people. And instead of being revolted by this spectacle, we have instead found a way to victimize the killers, and demonize the victims.
We read about how 800,000 people were slaughtered in Rwanda, simply because they were of the wrong culture. Yet, we just can’t imagine the real horror.
We saw the Islamists dancing in the streets, all around the world, at the news and sight of the collapsing World Trade Center Towers. And that didn’t make us furious.
We accept that hundreds of millions of Moslem women are treated like slaves, and that doesn’t register either. We simply accept this atrocity as a “normal” part of their culture.
Far too many of us don’t realize just how determined and hateful is the enemy we face. And whether we want to fight them or not; ultimately, it is not going to be our option. The only option we have, is whether we are going to do battle with them on our terms, or on theirs.
The UN, and the lovers of the UN can pretend all they want, that this ethnocentric and cultural collision with a fanatical enemy can be resolved through diplomacy and dialogue. But then again, it is the same UN which ordered Canada’s General Romeo D’Allaire to stand down, as 800,000 Rwandans were being butchered under the gaze of his well armed UN soldiers.
And for all of those, who continue to debate if we should go to war or not. Someone should point out to them, that the decision has already been made. And not by us.
If the attacks on 9/11, the African US embassies, the USS Cole, the first World Trade Center attack, the Marine base in Lebanon, the taking of the US embassy in Iran, and so many other attacks against Western secular nations aren’t a declaration of war. Then nothing is.