America must recover a sense of history and place. History is the story of man, often simply the rpa-sheet of the crimes of mankind. When one flips through the events that make up the story of mankind, the crimnal and sinful nature of man beocmes so clear that pessimism inevitably takes hold. A Gibbon said "history is nothing but the catalogue of crimes, misdeeds...." A great truth uttered by a great man. America does not know where it came from,not in the least, and therefore does not know where it is going. This is a generalization of mine based on experience and I see it reinforced constantly. Take as it is.
But if we do not know where we came from then how on earth are we to know where our enemies, friends and neutrals in the world came from? How can we understand India's history without knowing our own? We cannot. Therefore we as Americans cannot possibly know why India and Pakistan hate one another. How can we claim rspect for another culure, but disrespect our own? These are all problems which education will have to solve. But it will not.
Who can we learn from in history? Our enemies, be they in China or Iraq, know well their own history. As societies steeped in tradition, often pseudo-tribal or tribal, it is passed down from father to son, from imam to individual, from commisar to citizen. We have no such imparting of knowledge.
I only use this as an exapmle of how history is viewed in other societies, its importance, and why we must ourselves launch into a study of it.
Islam is particularlly rooted in history. The very nature of Islam, dependant on the immulation of Muhammad, leads it toward the historical. This history breeds rage, whether it be the Mythical golden age, the formerly dhimmidied Jews who have relciamed their land, the depredations suffered in the colonial period, or the counter-attack known as the Crsudaes. So our enemies fight not so much for the now but for the legacy of their forefathrs in Islam. They march singing praised of Muhammad, Abu Bakr, Khalid, Nur-al-Din, Saldian, and the like. When you look to the history of Islam, you see a nearly ubroken series of conqusts. You might think them invincibel. The question is, why did'nt Islam succeed in conquering the world? Its warriors fly off to death with grins on thier faces? Thry fear nothing, fight well and take no pity.
The answer: The Mongols.
This is thhe point was getting to with all of my talk of history. Hugulau Khan was a Mongol warrior. He was a relative of Ghengis Khan.
He used terror to win his battles. He attacked the Caliph and destroyed Baghdad. The irrigation system was torn up. He killed nearly the entire population, sparing only the Nestorian Christians. At least 800,000 were put to death. The Caliph was stuffed in a sack and trampled over with horses. The Mosques were converted to stables, the imams put to the sword along with all the city's notables, the Korans were tossed into the Eurphrates. Thus Iraq was conquered. America could learn much from this.
-No promises of democracy
-no promise of reconstruction
-no Mongols put on trial for shooting the enemy
-no mercy given to muslims, not even their children
All these depraved acts served to terrorise the Muslims into submission to an infidel army. They never rose against him. In fact there was no resistance. Certainly no years long guerilla war. No Islamic observances such as beheading. Terror is such a dirty word, with all of its non-Western connotations of cowardice. Bush has used 'Terror" as a word to incite outrage. In fact, to incite that Western European knightly notion of chivalry. That chivalry which died a century ago, and in truth never applied to any culture but the European. Terrorism is the best tactic the enemy can use against us. Thus far it has worked and the saying goes that you cannot argue with results. It has worked primarily because those who commit the acts have no fear that their families mght be vaporized, or thier village burt down.
In the Cold War there was talk of a 'Missile Gap". In this War Against Islam there is a 'Terror Gap' which our leaders must allow our military to close. Otherwise, the Zarqawis of the world will multiply, and there will be no end in sight to the bloodshed.