"History is philosophy teaching by example." (Lord Bolingbroke)

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Sunday, July 18, 2004

Victor Davis Hanson asks: Another 9/11?

Victor Davis Hanson on "Another 9/11?"
Encountering rationality in a morass of banality is like tasting cold, clear water on a hot, humid, hardworked day. It is, to paraphrase a television chef, "Ooooh, soooo good!" Victor Davis Hanson's article, "Another 9/11?" is just such an experience, contrasting good thinking to the cultural gigo we experience daily.

He examines the issue of possible attack by Jihadists on America, again.

He opens the article with these words:

"Almost daily we are assured that another attack on the homeland, commensurate with 9/11, is inevitable. What a scary mood of fatalism we are in! Where will it happen? The Olympics? The party conventions this summer? A week before the election? Chicago? L.A.?

"Our experts weighed in over the 4th of July weekend and seemed to disagree only over the method of the mass murder to come. Will it be chemical, biological, radiological, or involve hijacked planes, car bombs, or waves of suicide terrorists? We talk endlessly about "they" without ever specifying exactly who "they" really are who are planning to butcher us at home."

From here, he sets context by spelling out the current cultural depravity which competes with cultural cowardice, in this "election season,"  bringing out the worst in those having positions of power and influence over the country.

But, then, he focuses sharply:

"What to do? The key for the United States — in very quiet and deferential tones, in private, and to the albeit illegitimate leaders of these relevant countries — is to convey the message that if there should be a repeat of 9/11, the United States will hold any countries responsible who are proved to have aided or sheltered any of the guilty. Now what does that overused and near-meaningless phrase "hold responsible" really mean? A repeat of Afghanistan and Iraq in places like Iran or Syria?"

Oh, my God, what will Goofy Anus in the U.N. say? What will France and Germany do? We might really get disliked now. How dare anyone get so explicit and certain!

Well, it gets better from here. I would advise the ball-less to bail out right now. What follows is Reason 101, and it ain't PG-13:

"We should be clear about a proper response now and inform the appropriate parties exactly of the real damage that they should expect — and it won't be moral fuzziness about guilt over endemic poverty, ancient support for the shah, past Aramco antics, the misery of the Arab Street, and all the other bottled causes and complaints that the Middle East counts on for its accustomed pass from a supposedly neurotic, decadent, and self-loathing West."

Why, he can't say this! This is outrageous! Who is to say that we should lord it over these cultures? They're just as good as we are, and their differences are just as valuable as what we hold dear. Right? Right? Right?

Read on:

"Perhaps it would be best to inform hostile countries right now of a (big) list of their assets — military bases, power plants, communications, and assorted infrastructure — that will be taken out in the aftermath of another attack, a detailed sequence of targets that will be activated when the culpable terrorists' bases and support networks are identified and confirmed. We would have to draft a formal declaration of war — as we should have against the Taliban, bin Laden, and Saddam Hussein — against those countries that harbored or even aided the next 9/11-like cell. Both sides should anticipate the consequences should another 3,000 Americans be incinerated at work."

Now, those are the words and thoughts of a MAN, a RATIONAL MAN. I feel so good just reading them.

I love what Victor Davis Hanson writes. It is all good, but, sometimes it is great. This is one of those times.

I've got to reread this while I am getting another tall glass of that cold, clear water...


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