Sunday, June 19, 2005

VDH essay on "The Sorry Bunch"

Victor Davis Hanson is a brilliant writer and he's got a penchant for cutting through the smoke screens put up by the Western Left in clear prose. "The Sorry Bunch" is his essay on the NRO this week and it once again nails it. Merely implying that the Left in this country hates America is enough to invoke instant indignation. Not that the Left these days can really argue the point, they just get their noses out of joint over it and hit the replay button on the latest Nazi/Soviet/Cambodian comparison seeking to equate real torture and real murder and real tyranny with a made-up story about a Koran. Well, the truth hurts.

::::::::Indeed, it is far worse than that: Our own fundamentalist Left is in lockstep with Wahhabist reductionism — in its similar instinctive distrust of Western culture. Both blame the United States and excuse culpability on the part of Islamists. The more left-wing the Westerner, the more tolerant he is of right-wing Islamic extremism; the more liberal the Arab, the more likely he is to agree with conservative Westerners about the real source of Middle Eastern pathology.

The constant? A global distrust of Western-style liberalism and preference for deductive absolutism. So burn down a mosque in Zimbabwe, murder innocent Palestinians in Bethlehem in 2002, arrest Christians in Saudi Arabia, or slaughter Africans in Dafur, and both the Western Left and the Middle East's hard Right won't say a word. No such violence resonates with America's diverse critics as much as a false story of a flushed Koran — precisely because the gripe is not about the lives of real people, but the psychological hurts, angst, and warped ideology of those who in their various ways don't like the United States.

The revelation this past week of Senator Durbin's hateful, wildly inaccurate remarks have brought forth a realization in me. It is long past time for those of us who have a clear view of the fact that we're in a war, and that war wasn't started by us, to speak up clearly and to the point about what we're doing and why. VDH's article also has a warning for those of us who have been gritting our teeth as the Left spews out unsupported allegations and ludicrous moral equivalences.

::::::::A war that cannot be won entirely on the battlefield most certainly can be lost entirely off it — especially when an ailing Western liberal society is harder on its own democratic culture than it is on fascist Islamic fundamentalism.

So unhinged have we become that if an American policymaker calls for democracy and reform in the Middle East, then he is likely to echo the aspirations of jailed and persecuted Arab reformers. But if he says Islamic fascism is either none of our business or that we lack the wisdom or morality to pass judgment on the pathologies of a traditional tribal society, then the jihadist and the police state — and our own Western Left — approve.

The problem the administration faces is not entirely a military one: Our armed forces continue to perform heroically and selflessly under nearly impossible conditions of global scrutiny and hypercriticism. There has not been an attack on the U.S. since 9/11 — despite carnage in Madrid and over 1,000 slaughtered in Russia by various Islamic terrorists during the same period.

Rather, the American public is tiring of the Middle East, its hypocrisy and whiny logic — and to such a degree that it sometimes unfortunately doesn't make distinctions for the Iraqi democratic government or other Arab reformers, but rather is slowly coming to believe the entire region is ungracious, hopeless, and not worth another American soldier or dollar.

It's time to stop with the staying politely in our seats and folding our hands in our laps while we chant (to ourselves?) that the Left's got a right to their opinon and the right to speak while we have to simply sit there and say nothing. That confronting this unpatriotic and un-American attitude here within the borders of our own country is something best avoided. When idiots like Durbin make their remarks, we call them on it and demand they back it up. Durbin needs to see, in bright light and bloody color, the atrocities committed by the Nazis, by the Soviets, and by the Khmer Rouge. He needs to see all that - and so does the rest of America - and then see the worst Gitmo has offered. That a guard handled a book without gloves on, indeed.

I'm not yet sure what I can do, aside from blog about it as I have been. But I'm going to find out what I can do to get the real facts in front of my fellow Americans so they can see the hypocrisy and loathing of the Left for what it is. Then they can decide and have done with it.