Daniel Pipes is taking a hiatus from his column to teach a course at Pepperdine University in Malibu. In his last piece before the break, published today in the New York Sun, he details some of the reasons why we’re losing — in a conflict many Americans haven’t even yet noticed we’re fighting. (Many links in the original.)
After defeating the fascists and the communists, can the West now defeat the Islamists?
On the face of it, the West’s military predominance makes victory seem inevitable. Even if Tehran acquires a nuclear weapon, Islamists have nothing like the military machine the Axis deployed in World War II, nor the Soviet Union during the Cold War. What do the Islamists have to compare with the Wehrmacht or the Red Army? The SS or Spetznaz? The Gestapo or the KGB? Or, for that matter, to Auschwitz or the gulag?
Yet more than a few analysts, including myself, worry that it’s not so simple. Islamists (defined as those who demand to live by the sacred law of Islam) might do better than the earlier totalitarians. They could even win. That’s because, however strong the Western hardware, its software contains some potentially fatal bugs. Three of them “” pacifism, self-hatred, complacency “” deserve attention.
Pacifism: Among the educated, the conviction has taken hold that “there is no military solution” to current problems, a mantra applied to Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, the Kurds, terrorism, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. But this pragmatic pacifism overlooks the fact that modern history abounds with military solutions. What were the defeats of the Axis, America in Vietnam, or the Soviet Union in Afghanistan if not military solutions?
Self-hatred: Significant elements in several Western countries “” especially America, Britain, and Israel “” believe their own governments to be repositories of evil and see terrorism as just punishment for past sins. This “we have met the enemy and he is us” attitude replaces an effective response with appeasement, including a readiness to give up traditions and achievements.
This will be the focus of my next book, which is tentatively entitled, Why Christianity Is A Religion of Peace — And Islam Isn’t.
Osama bin Laden celebrates by name such leftists as Robert Fisk and William Blum. Self-hating Westerners have an outsize importance due to their prominent role as shapers of opinion in universities, the press, religious institutions, and the arts. They serve as the Islamists’ auxiliary mujahedeen.
Read it all.