Marines.Together We Served

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Progress

I just returned from my annual pilgrimage with my daughters to Hume Lake Christian Camp’s Father/Daughter Retreat. While there I was approached by a friend I see every year. He wanted to talk about the War on Terrorism. You see, he was having some doubts. So we talked. He’s much better now. The following is some of what I shared with him.

There is indeed progress in the Global War on Terrorism, what we call in the military, GWOT.

I’m very aware of the fact that the MSM (Main Stream Media, a misnomer if ever there was one) has reported mostly negative stories about America’s efforts to push back against the terrorists who have one purpose: rule by intimidation, or kill those who do not bow in subjection to their radically religious insanity. Repeatedly, Americans, specifically our military men and women, are portrayed in the media as the aggressors, bringing death and destruction on hapless, peaceful residents of far-away countries. So let me explain a few things for your edification.

First – America did not start this war. Islamic fanatics did. For the past several decades these terrorists have attempted to “beard the lion,” if you will. That is to say, they have sought to provoke the United States into a war they believe we cannot win. One thing they seriously misjudged was the resolve with which America would not only defend herself, but just how hard we would strike back. You see, these terrorists believe that we are soft and weak. They didn’t think we would stand up to them, let alone come after them with a vengeance. Surprise!

Second – A serious flaw in their thinking is that because we have so much of the world’s goods, and by any measure, are the wealthiest people to ever to occupy planet earth, we would be fearful of losing our material assets. Wrong! The reason America has such wealth is due to hard work and perseverance. Consider the generosity of the American people. While in the process of rescuing our own people from the ravages of successive hurricanes, we were sending relief supplies and military aid to a earthquake shattered region of Pakistan.

Third – The American military is the best trained and thoroughly equipped military in the world. The terrorists know they cannot stand against such well-trained soldiers. Terrorists operate mostly from emotion, whereas our military sets emotion aside in order to accomplish the stated mission. The one who fights from emotion, though unpredictable in his behavior, will exhaust himself and eventually make a fatal mistake. The one who fights with emotions under control will think clearly and overcome the adversary sooner or later. For instance, when you watch Islamists yelling and cheering in the streets, shooting their guns in the air (Where do they think those bullets are going?), shaking their fists and chanting their Anti-American slogans, the American military gives a collective yawn. They are unimpressed. Why? Because it’s all emotionally driven for show. I’ll take one Marine anytime against all the fist-shakers in the world.

Fourth – There is a growing shift, a change in the way people think, not only in the Middle East, but around the globe. Afghanistan is free from the rule of the murderous Taliban, and is emerging as a democratic state. Pakistan under President Musharraf, is actively hunting down terrorists in general, and Osama bin Laden in particular. Iraq is making great strides in shedding itself of the long tyranny of Saddam Hussein. Egypt held its first ever free elections since Hosni Mubarak took the reigns twenty-four years ago. Libya has voluntarily surrendered all efforts to make nuclear weapons. Lebanon told the Syrians to go home and leave their country alone. And now, Jordan has let terrorists know that coming into their country and killing other Muslims is not going to be tolerated, all of which spells the doom of the failed Islamic extremists.

There was an interesting article in the Christian Science Monitor on November 10th. It was entitled, “Qatar opens doors to first church in 14 centuries.” This short article may seem like no big deal, much ado about nothing. But, let me tell you this – for a conservative Muslim nation such as Qatar (Pronounced: “cutter” or “gutter.” Both are correct.) to not only allow a church building to be built within their borders, but to have the land donated by the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, is raising eyebrows all over the world.

Now add to this, the fact that churches in Baghdad are open once again, as are synagogues. Did you know, for instance, that there are thirty-seven synagogues in Baghdad alone?

The evidence that any country is making progress will be seen in the exercise of religious freedom. This is happening everywhere. It is having a wonderful affect, not only where American soldiers set foot, but in places we might least expect. Keep watching.

Ain’t it grand!

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