By Tony Blankley
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
September 12, 2005
Europe’s effort at cultural tolerance since World War II slowly morphed into a surprisingly deep self-loathing of Western culture that denied the instinct for cultural and national self-defense.
If Europe doesn’t rise to the challenge, Eurabia will come to pass. Then Europe will cease to be an American ally and instead become a base of operations (as she already is to a small degree) against us.
. . .
World War II was good, despite the millions of deaths, the limitations on daily lives, the encroachment on peacetime liberties and the arduousness of wartime life. The war was good because the sacrifice was for a noble cause, for the perpetuation of America and the American way of life.
The struggle against Islamist terrorism is an equally good war — and for the same reasons. We have just as great a responsibility to win our struggle against insurgent Islamist aggression as our parents and grandparents had to win World War II.
There is no other cause so urgent. If we do not pay with our sacrifices now, we (and our children) will pay in greater losses later. We must be prepared to be just as ruthless and rational as the “greatest generation” was in defeating fascism.
. . .
Up until now, we have never accurately named the enemy or the danger. If the government can’t speak the real name and nature of the enemy, it becomes impossible to explain, or even design, a policy for victory.
This is why Mr. Bush — who has tried to talk around the problem of radical Islam — has seemed (to his critics) foolish or deceitful, neither of which he is.
What we need is a clear congressional declaration of war, as prescribed by the Constitution.
Congress should declare war on the Islamist jihadists.
Naming the formal enemy limits the focus of our war effort to the militant Islamists who have declared jihad against the West. There are many terrorist groups in the world. Many are no threat to the United States. The current danger is the Islamist one.
Anatomy of a Photograph
The San Francisco Chronicle featured the original photograph on its front page in order to convey a positive message about the rally — perhaps that even politically aware teenagers were inspired to show up and rally for peace, sporting the message, “People of Color say ‘No to War!’” And that served the Chronicle’s agenda.
But this simple analysis reveals the very subtle but insidious type of bias that occurs in the media all the time. The Chronicle did not print an inaccuracy, nor did it doctor a photograph to misrepresent the facts. Instead, the Chronicle committed the sin of omission: it told you the truth, but it didn’t tell you the whole truth.
Because the whole truth — that the girl was part of a group of naive teenagers recruited by Communist activists to wear terrorist-style bandannas and carry Palestinian flags and obscene placards — is disturbing, and doesn’t conform to the narrative that the Chronicle is trying to promote. By presenting the photo out of context, and only showing the one image that suits its purpose, the Chronicle is intentionally manipulating the reader’s impression of the rally, and the rally’s intent.
Such tactics — in the no-man’s-land between ethical and unethical — are commonplace in the media, and have been for decades. It is only now, with the advent of citizen journalism, that we can at last begin to see the whole story and realize that the public has been manipulated like this all along.
Via Little Green Footballs, which regularly provides examples of misleading cropping.
Here’s another good one.
UPDATE: Hugh Hewitt reports on the Chronicle’s response to the criticism, and neatly summarizes:
Did the photo inform or mislead. It clearly misled. That’s the point. The only point.
"Some Americans want us to withdraw our troops so that we can escape the violence. I recognize their good intentions, but their position is wrong. Withdrawing our troops would make the world more dangerous, and make America less safe. To leave Iraq now would be to repeat the costly mistakes of the past that led to the attacks of September the 11th, 2001. The terrorists saw our response to the hostage crisis in Iran, the bombings in the Marine barracks in Lebanon, the first World Trade Center attack, the killing of American soldiers in Somalia, the destruction of two U.S. embassies in Africa, and the attack on the USS Cole. The terrorists concluded that we lacked the courage and character to defend ourselves, and so they attacked us. Now the terrorists are testing our will and resolve in Iraq. If we fail that test, the consequences for the safety and security of the American people would be enormous. Our withdrawal from Iraq would allow the terrorists to claim an historic victory over the United States. It would leave our enemies emboldened and allow men like Zarqawi and bin Laden to dominate the Middle East and launch more attacks on America and other free nations. The battle lines are drawn, and there is no middle ground: either we defeat the terrorists and help the Iraqis build a working democracy, or the terrorists will impose their dark ideology on the Iraqi people and make that country a source of terror and instability to come for decades." – President Bush (22 Sept 2005)
Via Security Watchtower.
The following is from a DOD press briefing on Tall Afar. The entire report is worth reading but this detailed description of the "terrorists" seems especially worthy of attention (via The Belmont Club):
I’d like just to briefly characterize the enemy, describe who we’re fighting here. This is an enemy, who when they came in, they removed all the imams from the mosques, and they replaced them with Islamic extremist laymen. They removed all the teachers from the schools and replaced them with people who had a fifth-grade education and who preached hatred and intolerance. They murdered people. In each of their cells that they have within the city has a direct action cell of about 100 or so fighters. They have a kidnapping and murder cell; they have a propaganda cell, a mortar cell, a sniper cell — a very high degree of organization here. And what the enemy did is to keep the population from performing other activities. To keep the population afraid, they kidnapped and murdered large numbers of the people here, and it was across the spectrum. A Sunni Turkmen imam was kidnapped and murdered. A very fine man, a city councilman, Councilman Suliman (sp), was pulled out of his car in front of his children and his wife and gunned down with about 30 gunshot wounds to his head. The enemy conducted indiscriminate mortar attacks against populated areas and wounded scores of children and killed many others. The enemy here did just the most horrible things you can imagine, in one case murdering a child, placing a booby trap within the child’s body and waiting for the parent to come recover the body of their child and exploding it to kill the parents. Beheadings and so forth.
fifth column fourth estate continues to undermine the good guys: Poll: Fewer than half think U.S. will win in Iraq:
On Thursday, Bush tried again to portray Iraq as a front on the global war on terrorism that began with the attacks of September 11, 2001, saying a U.S. withdrawal would only embolden terrorists.
CNN tried again to portray the situation as hopeless and to pretend the Jihadis in Iraq have nothing whatsoever in common with the 9/11 hijackers.
The Multiculturalists’ Anti-Anti-Terror War . . .
In the eye of the cultural marxist, only Westerners — White Christian Westerners — can be guilty of racism, not, however, Islamicists, even at the moment they are preaching and practicing undeniable, virulent racism. Somehow that racism is neither organic nor religious/cultural, but “caused by us, our fault.” How else could George Galloway justify his claim that: "[the US and UK] are the biggest rogue states in the world today"?
By Rabbi Aryeh Spero
Human Events | August 15, 2005
They pontificate for the human rights of others — especially the enemy — more than for our own because that highlights, in their mind, how much more noble they are than the rest of us — morally superior to you and me.
. . .
In the eye of the cultural marxist, only Westerners — White Christian Westerners — can be guilty of racism, not, however, Islamicists, even at the moment they are preaching and practicing undeniable, virulent racism. Somehow that racism is neither organic nor religious/cultural, but “caused by us, our fault.”
How else could George Galloway justify his claim that: "[the US and UK] are the biggest rogue states in the world today"?
Anti-terrorism bill seen as undermining civil liberties
Tania Branigan, political correspondent
Wednesday September 21, 2005
Liberal Democrats yesterday warned that the government’s counter-terrorism proposals would inflame community tensions and alienate young Muslims, as they unanimously passed a motion urging the party to defend civil liberties and oppose any move to water down human rights legislation.
. . .
Summing up the motion, Brian Stone, an activist from Hackney, London, said it expressed the heart and conscience of the Liberal Democrats. “The bombs were non-discriminatory. That day any Muslims in London were just as much [at] risk as I was. We have a government that seeks to imply that for some reason Islam is a crime and those who practise it are perpetrators. That’s what this motion is about.”
No, what we have is a sactimonious fifth column that seeks to imply that for some reason questioning Muslims is a crime and those who inquire are racist bigots. That’s what this motion is about.
Anyone who becomes alienated or inflamed by our attempts to protect ourselves is likely someone we need to protect ourselves from.
A Letter to All Who Voted for George W. Bush from Michael Moore:
I really want to know — and I ask you this in all sincerity and with all due respect — how do you feel about the utter contempt Mr. Bush has shown for your safety? C’mon, give me just a moment of honesty. Don’t start ranting on about how this disaster in New Orleans was the fault of one of the poorest cities in America. Put aside your hatred of Democrats and liberals and anyone with the last name of Clinton. Just look me in the eye and tell me our President did the right thing after 9/11 by naming a horse show runner as the top man to protect us in case of an emergency or catastrophe.
I want you to put aside your self-affixed label of Republican/conservative/born-again/capitalist/ditto-head/right-winger and just talk to me as an American, on the common ground we both call America.
Are we safer now than before 9/11? When you learn that behind the horse show runner, the #2 and #3 men in charge of emergency preparedness have zero experience in emergency preparedness, do you think we are safer?
Well, I don’t think we have much common ground and you’re a poor excuse for an American, but I’ll try to answer. You want to know if those of us who voted for George Bush feel safer. Unlike you I don’t claim to speak for anyone but myself. My answer is: hell yes assclown. Certainly safer than Al Gore, John Kerry, or you would have made us. Even after 9/11 none of you would have lifted a finger against the Taliban. None of you would have taken out Saddam and his sons. None of you would have confronted the Jihadi threat. Of course we’re safer now that Al Qaeda’s Afghani training camps are closed, Saddam’s WMD shell games are over, and Jihadis are flocking to paradise by way of Iraq. Of course you would have trouble seeing the value in any of this. You never recognized the threat, or blamed us for creating it ourselves. Sorry if I sound confused – you’ve never been very clear on that point.
Unlike you I don’t hold civilization or the people who sustain it to blame for the sociopaths who want to tear it down. Unlike you I don’t sympathize with those sociopaths and undermine those who fight them. And unlike you I don’t blame Bush or FEMA for Katrina. I blame the dehumanizing welfare state and the mentality of dependency engendered by it. And that was wrought by the kind of soft-headed leftist idealism you espouse. You alone are to blame for your short-sighted and self-serving partisan vitriol, your hypocritical holier-than-thou criticisms of the righteous, and your two-faced attitude toward your country and countrymen.
And on this sacred day of remembrance, do you think we honor or shame those who died on 9/11/01? If we learned nothing and find ourselves today every bit as vulnerable and unprepared as we were on that bright sunny morning, then did the 3,000 die in vain?
So a letter demonstrating your ignorance of what has been achieved and utter contempt for those who paid for it is how you honor those who died? On 9/11 I learned that we were vulnerable and unprepared. Today I see that we are better off, thanks to the efforts and sacrifices of many brave and mostly unsung individuals, to which those of us who cherish civilization all owe a great debt. I also see that you are just as narcissistic and pompous as ever. Mr. Moore, in all sincerity and with all due respect please write your next open letter in Arabic so your most ardent fans won’t need to translate it.
MAHER: Well, I’m thrilled you’re here. When all this went down the last couple of weeks, you know, a flood is kind of biblical, and I thought, let’s get someone on here who can – who has really seen it all, and who can compare this to other – how would you compare this to other fiascos and disasters that this country has seen?
VONNEGUT: Well, this country was already financially and spiritually ruined before the hurricane ever hit New Orleans. I thought about the tsunami hitting Indonesia. Nature was a piker compared to human beings when it comes to killing people. The tsunami killed, I think, I calculated about 3% as many people as the Holocaust killed.
Vonnegut could have really made Nature look like a piker if he had cited the much larger death tolls of the Soviets (20M) and Communist Chinese (40M). If I were a socialist I wouldn’t call attention to those examples either. He opposed the war in Vietnam, so maybe he’d be interested to know that the post-war deaths there (430K) also exceed the tsunami (123K). Probably not.
This financially and spiritually ruined country sent more aid to the tsunami victims than any other and played a critical role in ending the Holocaust. Both of Vonnegut’s examples contradict his point, which didn’t even answer Maher’s question. Nobody noticed, they were so eager to get straight to the insults:
MAHER: Well, what do you, as a writer, when you see President Bush, is there something tragic there? Is that a story that appeals to a writer? Because here’s a guy, like most tragic figures, who is trying very hard to avoid something. In his case, he was trying very hard to avoid the fate of his father. And then he’s undone by a war in Iraq and a hurricane.
VONNEGUT: Yes. [scattered applause] It’s a tragedy for me that he’s president of my country. [applause] And he doesn’t – you know, my book is called A Man Without a Country. Well, I’ve still got a passport, but if I showed this now in Portugal or Spain or Italy or Germany or France, or Denmark, or Japan or even Communist China, what it would say about me is that I am not only from the richest country in the world, but the dumbest country in the world. [laughter] [applause] Is our president a tragic figure? Perhaps, but he doesn’t know diddly-squat about economics or history or science, even how to speak well. [laughter] [applause]
Is Vonnegut a tragic figure? [laughter] Perhaps, but he doesn’t know diddly-squat about economics or history or science, even how to think well. [laughter] [applause] The next time he’s in another country he might consider how they compare to the US in economics, history, or science. [boos]
FLIGHT 93 MEMORIAL: FIGHTING BACK
By Michelle Malkin
The Flight 93 Memorial
The Belmont Club
The hijackers of Flight 93 were motivated by deeply held Islamic beliefs. Misguided or not they considered themselves Jihadis. Soldiers of Allah. They went down screaming “Allahu Ackbar”. This was not four guys out to make some money who just happened to be Muslim. Their goal was to kill and terrorize as many innocent civilians as possible because that’s what they thought their god wanted.
The innocent Americans trapped on Flight 93 quickly realized they were going to die unless they fought back. They fought and they died, but it wasn’t in vain. They thwarted the Jihadis and drove home, for those of us who were paying attention, what is still to this day the most valuable lesson in our struggle against their ilk: negotiation and wishful thinking is wasted on this villain, our only choices are to resist or perish.
The brave people of Flight 93 deserve a fitting and dignified memorial. Not an homage, intentional or not, to the religion that motivated their depraved killers.