How do wars end? They usually end the same way they always have. One side wins.
Will the US win the war against al-Qaeda and the Taliban? Probably, but not soon.
So many Americans have succumbed to political correctness that they are divorced from reality. In their thinking, America encounters cultural challenges accruing no ill effects.
Consider the “sensitive” issue of radical, extremist, jihadist Islam.
Giving “radical” and “extremist” some context, in 2010 the estimated world Islamic population was 1.6 billion, or about 23% of the world’s population. That said, if only a tiny fraction of the Islamic world population, say 1%, were “radicalized” that would result in about 1.6 million radicals worldwide. That’s a lot of fanatics prepared to commit murder and mayhem.
More context is revealed when reflecting on events over the past four decades. When connecting the dots reality begins to form a picture.
Bobby Kennedy was shot and killed (1968) by a Muslim extremist.
Eleven Israeli Olympic athletes (1972) were kidnapped and murdered by Muslim extremists.
The US embassy in Tehran, Iran, was stormed in 1979 and 52 American hostages were held 444 days by Muslim extremists.
Throughout the 1980s several Americans were kidnapped and killed in Lebanon by Muslim extremists. These same Muslim extremists laid waste to a previously beautiful country.
In 1983 the Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, was blown up by Muslim extremists using two truck bombs killing 241 Americans.
The cruise ship Achille Lauro was hijacked by Muslim extremists in 1985. American Leon Klinghoffer, 69, was murdered in his wheel chair and his body thrown overboard.
TWA flight 847 was hijacked in Athens, Greece, by Muslim extremists. Navy diver Robert Stethem was tortured and murdered and his body was thrown on the tarmac. The other 153 passengers were held hostage on board for two weeks.
Pan Am flight 103 was blown up in flight over Scotland in 1988 by Muslim extremists killing all 243 on board.
The World Trade Center was bombed the first time in 1993 by Muslim extremists
The US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were attacked with truck bombs in 1998 by Muslim extremists killing hundreds.
We’ll never forget what happened September 11, 2001, when Muslim extremists killed thousands in New York City and the Pentagon by flying jets into their targets.
In 2002, reporter Daniel Pearl was publicly beheaded by Muslim extremists.
These are a few of the incidents, the ones that made the headlines. This was just the beginning of the long war.
In Islam, as in the West, minorities sometimes dictate to the majority especially through threat and intimidation. The long war is more than an assault on the West. Throughout the Muslim world population Sunni, Shia and Sufi fight one another. Different versions of Islam held by various clerics lead to unbelievable violence. Saudi Arabia persecutes Shiites. Iran persecutes Sunnis and Sufis. Egypt persecutes Shiites. And so it goes.
Charges brought by Muslim against Muslim are no different than charges against Western infidels. They include, “fighting against God,” blasphemy, “hurting religious feelings,” “publishing untruths and disturbing public minds,” “dissension from religious dogma,” “insulting Islam,” “promoting pluralism,” and “propagating spiritual liberalism.” Punishments range from imprisonment to torture to beheading and are common from Indonesia to Africa.
Muslim reformers in the West are routinely threatened with death. Even non-Muslims in the US face intimidation. Random House refused to publish a romance novel about Mohammed’s wife, “Jewel of Medina,” to protect the safety of the author, Random House employees and booksellers.
Under intimidation, Yale University Press has removed illustrations of Mohammed from some forthcoming publications.
Molly Norris previously with the Seattle Weekly suggested people participate in “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day.” After death threats the FBI recommended she go into hiding where she remains and has reverted to a new identity.
Moral sensibilities have nothing to do with these self-imposed restraints. It has to do with fear. Nevertheless, political correctness demands that Americans be blind to events such as these.
Meanwhile, the long, slow war boils on even within our borders.
We may eventually wear down the extremists through force and ideological appeal. Al-Qaeda and fellow zealots will not gain their beloved transnational Caliphate. They will not destroy Western influence.
This prolonged war will come to an end the way all wars do. And, the victor will not be the Islamic extremists.