The PROBLEM, in American at least, is the craziness of the Baby Boomers, Left AND Right, who don’t see that islam is at war with us whether or not we want to be at war with them, and reacting accordingly.
When attacked, the proper response of a Great Power intent on keeping international peace – the ROLE of the Great Powers, what DEFINES Great Powers throughout history – is to respond disproportionately to destroy the enemy of global peace as quickly, with as little loss to their own citizenry and to the world financial system as possible.
The proper response to 9-11, after a decade of increasingly violent attacks by islam on America and the West, would have been to identify the center of finance and ideology of the problem (Saudi Arabia) and destroy it, much as we destroyed Tokyo, Berlin, Cologne, Dresden, Hiroshima and Nagasaki: Strategic bombing with no loss of American lives, using a few nukes to effect the proper outcome: No American lives lost, no trillions spent (that will impoverish the West for decades), problem correctly addressed; and, though terror would have continued for a bit as low-level backlash, the seriousness of this response would have stopped its funding and set a tone globally, that civilized people were NOT going to put up with this crap.
If Great Powers ALLOW themselves to be attacked, smaller powers will attack one another at-will. This always has resulted in a less-peaceful world, with greater loss of life to civilians everywhere, poorer nations the most.
Attacking – and destroying – this barbarism a decade ago not only would have been the correct historical choice for a Great Power to make to ensure a more-peaceful world, , it would have ended the problem of political islam begun by Jimmy Carter when allowing Khomeini back into Iran. More importantly for the future, it would have overturned the idea that Great Powers can be attacked with impunity by drawing a serious line that – seriously- civilization WILL defend itself.
Further, the barbarism of sharia would not have expanded across N Africa and S Asia (currently enabled by the American president), saving hundreds of millions of humans from its barbarity.
Instead we have been “waging” this nonsensical “war” at the cost of trillions of dollars and thousands of lives – and at an unknown & unknowable cost to future nonexistent generations because their never-to-be-parents lie dead in the sands of these barbaric lands.
People yammer about “innocent lives” in these lands and we can’t just nuke them. Really? Are those the “innocents” that stand around watching people being hanged, stoned, whipped, murdered — and do NOTHING? The innocents that raise, feed, house, clothe, organize, train and equip those trying to impose barbarity on civilization? Not every German was a NAZI and not every Japanese was a member of the Imperial Army – but the GOAL – destroying our enemies, overturning tyranny, returning freedom to peoples – overrode those concerns, and the fact that neither Imperial Japan nor NAZI Germany could have arisen or stayed in power had the citizenry seriously rebelled informed our decision to WIN THE WAR and DEMAND UNCONDITIONAL SURRENDER. And, guess what? BOTH Japan and Germany have been peaceful economic, political and military allies ever since, and their people freer than they have ever been.
Simply, we in the West have chosen THE WORST POSSIBLE RESPONSE to the 9/11 attacks, the attacks on Madrid and the London Tube, etc., and the continuing terror nonsense.
The responsibility for this lies with Republicans AND Democrats in America, and with the erstwhile democracies of the rest of the West, and all of the citizens of those nations.
Our “Leaders” talk about this “war” on terror as being a decades-long one. That is absurd. As I have a character in my geopolitical novel, China Rising, say in discussion regarding terrorism and its impact on the world, “Someone’s gotta take charge. Someone is going to take charge. Be nice if it’s America. But it’s going to be somebody.” In the novel, China assumes this role, rising as a Great Power, hence the title. But this is only a novel. The rise of islamist terror and the withering of Western power – for that very much is what we are seeing – power is not weapons, power is willpower — ought to shake every modern human being to his or her core, because modernity simply cannot coexist with islamism. And THAT is NOT a fictional statement.
But to think that a basically passive America will continue to lead as this barbarism continues is absurd. Someone WILL stop it – or it will win. There is no third alternative.
And nothing in history guarantees that a Great Power fiddling around instead of actively pursuing its role, must survive; it’s a nice conceit for those with no grasp of history, but it isn’t reality.