The object of war is to break an enemy’s will and destroy his capacity to fight. Therefore, a nation divided in wartime is a nation that invites its own defeat. Yet that is precisely how Americans are facing the global war that radical Islamists have declared on them.
The enemies who confront us are religious barbarians, armed
with the technologies of modern warfare but guided by morals that
are medieval and grotesque. Their stated goal is the obliteration of
America and the conquest of the West. They have assembled a coali-
tion that includes sovereign states such as Iran and Syria, Muslim
armies such as al-Qaeda, Hezbollah, and Hamas, and terrorist cells
that are globally dispersed and beyond counting.
This jihad has access to biological, chemical, and possibly nuclear
weapons. It actively threatens the regimes in Lebanon, Afghanistan,
Pakistan, Somalia, Turkey, and Egypt. Among its allies are non-Mus-
lim states such as the Communist regimes in North Korea, Venezuela,
and China. Its enablers include Saudi Arabia, Russia, and the vast
political networks of the international Left. Its pool of sympathizters ers and supporters can be counted in the hundreds of millions, and
its political fronts are embedded in almost every nation and every
continent, including Europe and the United States.
The warriors of the jihad are promised salvation for slaughter-
ing innocents; their highest honor is to sacrifice themselves for Al-
lah by murdering infidels; their goal is to restore an Islamic empire
that once stretched into the heart of Europe, until it was defeated
in the battle of Vienna on September 11, 1683. Three hundred years
later, Osama bin Laden turned this date of humiliation into a day of
vengeance—and revival. Striking America’s homeland on September
11, 2001 jihadists murdered thousands of unsuspecting civilians, and
came within a terrorist attack or two of destabilizing the American
economy and unleashing chaos. As the victim of these unprovoked and savage attacks, and as the defender of democratic values in three world wars, America would seem a worthy cause. Instead, America is on the defensive, harshly criticized by its traditional allies and under political attack by significant elements of its own population.
In this epic conflict Americans appear more divided among themselves than they have been at any time in the century–and–a
half since the Civil War. Never in those years was an American
commander-in-chief the target of such extreme attacks by his own
countrymen with his troops in harm’s way. Never in its history has
America faced an external enemy with its own leaders so at odds
with each other.
— Party of Defeat co-written with Ben Johnson
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