by Greg Cain
Three years have passed since the attacks of September 11, 2001. Thankfully, nothing similar has since occurred within the American homeland, and things have pretty much gotten back to normal. Yet, rather than rejoicing at the present return to relative calm, many Americans choose instead to nurture a simmering resentment against the Bush Administration's war on terrorism. To fully comprehend the irony of the situation, it should be considered against the backdrop of the last enemy incursion on this continent that approached the enormity of 9-11. Three years after Pearl Harbor, the United States still faced another two years before victory would officially be declared. And by that time, American casualties numbered not in the hundreds, but in the hundreds of thousands.
In contrast, wars have been fought and won in two nations since 9-11, admittedly resulting in over one thousand American casualties. But while even one lost life constitutes a tragedy, the United States could nonetheless continue to suffer losses at the same rate, and it would still be a couple of years before those numbers equaled the loss of life in Manhattan on September 11.
Despite the efficiency with which American forces have routed one terrorist cell after another throughout the world, and with apparent indifference to the thoroughness with which the battle has been carried to the enemy's front (thus removing it from America's cities), cynicism and resentment abound. Worse yet, such sentiments are being shamelessly exploited by the liberal democrats. Something fundamental has changed in this country since the end of the Second World War, and even the national decline of morality cannot completely account for it.
With the advent of the Cold War, military posturing took on a completely different character from what it had been previously. Even as terrible as were the conflicts in Korea and Vietnam, their impact was mostly regional. Any international jockeying for supremacy, during the half-century following Japan's surrender, occurred under the ominous shadow of a largely unrecognized battle for technological dominance being waged between the United States and the Soviet Union. The nuclear stalemate between those two powers virtually ensured that, ponderous though the ebb and flow of the Cold War may have been, it occurred at a level far detached from the day-to-day lives of the common people.
Thus an entire generation grew up believing it possessed solutions for all the world's problems, yet armed with nothing more than its own arrogance. Never was it forced to face the consequences of its extreme naiveté, nor temper its advocacy of an unworkable utopia with reality. "Peace and love" were incessantly preached as answers to aggressive militarism, with no resulting risk to those who mindlessly promoted the notion of leaving the country vulnerable to its foreign enemies.
But harsh reality should have shattered all of the "enlightened" theorizing on September 11, 2001. Clearly, the terrorists of Al Qaeda proved beyond question that they could slip beneath conventional methods of protection and do great harm to Americans. Unfortunately, far too many Americans have simply presumed that, in the absence of subsequent attacks, they can now lapse back into their former state of blissful ignorance.
Worse yet, forces within this country's borders, and even among its political class, have incessantly distorted the terror war to their own political advantage, even if so doing poses further risks for the nation. Shortly after September 11, Congressional and Senate Democrats attempted to generate controversy by suggesting that the Bush Administration had possessed sufficient intelligence to preempt the attacks, but for some dark reason, failed to do so.
Now, in the aftermath of two highly successful military campaigns, both of which routed governments with long track records of anti-American activity, liberals have reverted to condemning the President for using excessive force against a power that they claim did not constitute an "imminent threat." This latest broadside against the President was epitomized by Al Gore's recent hysterical accusation that President Bush "betrayed America."
Can anyone really doubt that Saddam Hussein, with his record of brutality, genocide, and support of international terrorism, posed a threat to Americans, and that the entire world is better off without him?
It is Al Gore, Michael Moore, and their cohorts among liberal Democrats who, by their distortions of the truth, betray and thus imperil America. Heaven forbid that this nation should wait until Al Qaeda, and those powers that enabled it, unequivocally prove themselves to still be an "imminent threat."