Somehow the “moderate” Muslims who are supposed to counterbalance the “radical extremists” never stand up to be counted in any great numbers. There is no reason to believe that any significant number of Muslims are appalled by terrorism and stand ready to help us purge their faith of the few dangerous extremists who are responsible for it. Nevertheless many of our best and brightest do believe exactly that. This is the sort of wishful thinking that makes a mockery of military planning and gets people killed.
As Samuel Huntington famously observed, Islam has “bloody borders.” In our interconnected world those borders are everywhere. History fades seamlessly into current events leaving no doubt that, among modern religions, Islam is uniquely violent because it is uniquely prone to violence. We are reaping exactly what Mohammed sowed.
Ever since September 11 all our Muslim enemies have had the recipe for striking us without fear of retaliation. Get a terrorist group to front for you and avoid leaving proof beyond reasonable doubt of your involvement. If America responds at all it will flail away at the puppet while the puppeteer laughs.
Now that we have taught our enemies this lesson we can’t deter them. If they can melt our cities with nuclear bombs disguised as a yachts, freighters or truckloads of cargo from Mexico, they will. If they can infect a dozen jihadis with smallpox and set off an epidemic that kills millions, they will. If they can bring the horror of Beslan to our shores over and over again, they will.
Whatever they do, they will expect us to continue chasing shadowy terrorists leaving the terror masters free to sponsor more attacks. We have given them every reason to believe that they can safely pummel us into oblivion while we bicker about how to craft a proportional, narrowly-tailored response.
Winning our war means nothing less than separating the Muslim world from one of the central tenets of its faith. We have to teach a proud culture a bitter lesson. We have to convince it that Islam can only survive in the modern world by adapting to the reality that the infidel calls the shots. Muslims have to accept that our culture is dominant over theirs and, however much this offends their religious sensibilities, no amount of brutality and barbarism will change that.
They need to understand that sending terrorists to wage war against us is self-destructive lunacy, not a low risk way to soothe a well-earned inferiority complex.
To defend ourselves effectively we have lessons of our own to learn. We have to understand that millions of Muslims who are not active terrorists are nonetheless our enemies. We also have to understand that while we may have Muslim allies of convenience we have very few friends in the Muslim world.
Acknowledging all this is not bigotry. It’s realism. If we are going to survive we need a lot more realism.