Friday, September 11, 2009

Remembering 9/11

Today is September 11, the anniversary of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon that left almost 3,000 Americans dead.It was by far the worst and most successful attack by a foreign enemy on our shores.

There are the usual ceremonies going on, but I notice a different emotion in the air this year. A bit of unease and, dare I say it, shame. Both are very easy to understand.

President Obama made the expected sort of nuanced remarks about the thing today speaking at the Pentagon,dubbing this 'National service and remembrance day' or something like that, and urging Americans to attend inter-faith services.

While there's nothing overtly worrying about his remarks, it's his action that have people worried.

Obama's nine months in office have been distinguished by his apology tours and his blatant appeasement of the Muslim world while distancing the US from our traditional allies. He has cut defense spending heavily, (particularly in missile defense) while doing absolutely nothing to curtail Iran's rush towards nuclear weapons.If anything, Obama's feckless attitude has exacerbated the intransigence of Iran and our other adversaries , and the sort of advisers Obama has around him have reinforced that attitude.

The borders remain an open sieve, we’re releasing terrorists from Gitmo only to see them caught fighting us again, and most of the measures put in place by the Bush Administration that worked in keeping the country from another attack are being bypassed and curtailed as the Obama Administration turns the Justice Department loose on the very people we rely on to help us fight the war. And once Obama finishes his purge of the Justice and Intelligence communities by prosecuting those who were on the front lines after 9/11, I doubt we're going to have much luck finding people willing to put their necks in a Democrat noose in order to effectively interrogate someone or put in the extra effort to protect us. At a time when the Obama Administration has the FBI mirandizing captured Jihadis on the battlefield, you certainly can't blame them.

We’ve returned with a vengeance to exactly the kind of failed pre 9-11 policies that made Islamist terrorism a legal issue rather than an act of war.What we're mourning today is the culmination of how well those policies worked.

We’re effectively right back to where we started on 9/10, and we're simply recreating the climate that led to this nightmare in the first place.

While many Americans might have trouble putting their finger on exactly why they're so uneasy on this ghastly anniversary, but to me the feeling is palpable.I can literally smell it under the surface.

The other stench in the air, shame, is there as well.

To be blunt about it, 3,000 of our fellow citizens were butchered and we've essentially done very little about it. Oh, we put a few jihadi subcontractors in jail, even killed some, but 8 years later we've yet to actually look at the root causes and deal with the real perpetrators. We won't even allow them to be sued in court for monetary damages.

There's a psychological term known as 'category error', which is defined as the inability to solve a problem because of difficulty in naming it correctly.We've been suffering from it for quite some time now.

That's why we still haven't defeated a bunch of 7th century brigands in 8 years.

As a point of reference, it took us only four and a half years to utterly destroy the Nazis and the Empire of Japan at a time when we were far weaker and unprepared for war and our enemies were far stronger than the current ones.

We've been told that `this is a new kind of war' without borders or real enemies. That is, in a word, horse manure. Anyone who pays any attention at all knows exactly where the support network of jihad is located. And exactly where to find our enemies. As Mark Steyn memorably put it, they are hiding in plain sight.

We have, so far, not been willing to directly confront the Islamist nations that use groups like al Qaeda, Jamaat Islamiah, the taliban Hizb al-Tarir, Hezbollah, Hamas, the various Musim Brotherhood offshoots, and others like them these as terrorist proxies and jihad shock troops. Nor have we been wiling to confront Iran as it steadily arms itself with the most deadly arms mankind posseses. Until we do, we will be no closer to victory in this war than we are today.

And that's really the heart of the matter, and we should be ashamed of allowing it to occur.

Think I'm overstating? I want you to listen to something.

This is a link to the audio portion of a video made on the spot by KOMO News reporter Tami Michaels, and her husband, Guy Rosbrook, were in their room on the 35th floor at the Millennium Hilton Hotel in downtown Manhattan just across from the World Trade Center when it was hit.

The video has never been played on broadcast television, because it shows graphic images of people leaping to their deaths, but it was played at the trial of the so-called "20th hijacker," Zacharias Moussaoui. The judge wouldn't allow the jurors to hear what you're about to experience, calling it "too inflammatory" for the jurors but they got to see the video portion, with Michaels describing what was happening from the witness stand.

Remember as you listen to this the widespread celebrations in many areas throughout the Muslim world after the people in the Twin Towers were murdered in this fashion.

No wonder they have contempt for us. Coming from an honor/shame culture, their perception is that any other country would have marshaled all its power to avenge this and make sure it never happened again. That we did not strikes them as a sign of weakness and an invitation to further aggression.

To win this war, we will have to become more focused, more ruthless and more willing to do what it takes to defeat an enemy with whom there is no negotiating. Are we prepared to do that? And if not now, will it take another 9/11 to convince us?


Yokel said...

We cannot win until we (our nations) are prepared to identify our enemy.

Throughout the world, people are getting restive because their governments are refusing to acknowledge that it is Islamic ideology that was behind the 9/11 and similar attacks. The refusal of our governments to face up to our enemy is not only giving courage to our enemy, it is also giving credence to the conspiracy theories that claim our governments are in league with our enemies!

B.poster said...

I think you are spot on that there is some shame. After all, there are a significant minority of Americans who feel ashamed of their country and subscribe to the view that America "had it coming" or "America your chickens have come home to roost." These people will be found in any medium sized gathering. There emotions are probably going to be reflected in the overall mood of any gathering of people.

In addition to shame, I would also say there is something I would describe as "demoralization." The last 7 plus years have seen America withdraw from one place after another and suffer one defeat after another in proxy battles with its enemies.

Also, late in 2008 Israel had Hamas on the ropes and was close to defeating them. Here we had a chance to defeat a mortal enemy of America and for whatever reason Israel stopped short and the enemy is now stronger than it was before. The fact that the American government made no effort to urge Israel to keep going and even encouraged Israel to stop suggested to me that the American Government be it Republican or Democrat are not serious about American national security. To say this was demoralizing is an understatement. I know alot of others feel this way too. There emotions will be reflected in any medium sized gathering of people as well. How the emotions of feeling demoralized and feeling ashamed manifest themselves are very simillar.