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Saturday, June 27, 2009

RE: Ralph Peters - Political Mannerism - Wishful Thinking and Indecisive Wars

“”Third, ending the draft resulted in a superb military, but an unknowing, detached population. The higher you go in our social caste system, the less grasp you find of the military’s complexity and the greater the expectation that, when employed, our armed forces should be able to fix things promptly and politely.”


I am a veteran myself (I volunteered) and I teach among youth of a lower socioeconomic group; some middle class but mostly lower middle class or poor. I have known hundreds of military recruits and have been visited by many dozens. In one AP class five of my student enlisted in the Marines and came back at the same time to speak to our classes (by the way the administrations –under pressure from families –particularly upper middle class families- DOES NO ALLOW recruiters to speak to classes during class team even as a guest speaker. The local Catholic High School does not allow recruiters on campus which I think is a disgrace). Recruiters are allowed to call students at home and make appointments at school. The are allowed to administer the ASVAB test.


“the privileged among us have lost the sense of grit in daily life. We grow up believing that safety from harm is a right that others are bound to respect as we do. Our rising generation of political leaders assumes that, if anyone wishes to do us harm, it must be the result of a misunderstanding that can be resolved by that lethal narcotic of the chattering classes, dialogue.


This is probably true in upper middle class suburbs but it is not true in rough and tumble Kern County where people hunt and shoot and play masculine sports with abandon. But I am sure it is true of the effete pansy metrosexuals but not –just look –among the NYPD.


“Last, but not least, history is no longer taught as a serious subject in America’s schools. As a result, politicians lack perspective; journalists lack meaningful touchstones; and the average person’s sense of warfare has been redefined by media entertainments in which misery, if introduced, is brief. “

MUNRO: this may be true but it not only the sense of history many Americans lack. It is the sense of race (in the meaning of race and line -descent). It is a sense of religion and tradition and the gratitude and continuity this gives.

Religion and tradition still have a pulse in America but are much diminished . Except in the military. I have never been in a college –even a Catholic college- were religion was taken as seriously and studied as seriously as when I served in the Marines (along with the Navy of course). Perhaps it is true there are (few or) no atheists in fox holes or in the fleet.

“”One of the many disheartening results of our willful ignorance has been well-intentioned, inane claims to the effect that “war doesn’t change anything” and that “war isn’t the answer,” that we all need to “give peace a chance.” Who among us would not love to live in such a splendid world? Unfortunately, the world in which we do live remains one in which war is the primary means of resolving humanity’s grandest disagreements, as well as supplying the answer to plenty of questions. As for giving peace a chance, the sentiment is nice, but it does not work when your self-appointed enemy wants to kill you. Gandhi’s campaign of non-violence (often quite violent in its reality) only worked because his opponent was willing to play along. Gandhi would not have survived very long in Nazi Germany, Stalin’s Russia, Mao’s (or today’s) China, Pol Pot’s Cambodia, or Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. Effective non-violence is contractual. Where the contract does not exist, Gandhi dies.

MUNRO: This is true of course and George Orwell made exactly the same point many years ago..Gandhi was lucky to know about the Magna Carta and that, ultimately, as in Ireland or Scotland and in the 13 Colonies, the British were not willing to rule as ruthless tyrants and exterminate their enemies.

“The problem is religion. Our Islamist enemies are inspired by it, while we are terrified even to talk about it. We are in the unique position of denying that our enemies know what they themselves are up to. They insist, publicly, that their goal is our destruction (or, in their mildest moods, our conversion) in their god’s name. We contort ourselves to insist that their religious rhetoric is all a sham, that they are merely cynics exploiting the superstitions of the masses. Setting aside the point that a devout believer can behave cynically in his mundane actions, our phony, one-dimensional analysis of al-Qaeda and its ilk has precious little to do with the nature of our enemies—which we are desperate to deny—and everything to do with us. “

MUNRO: Peters is exactly right. The elites believe religion is an illusion. But this illusion like the monsters from the Id is rushing to destroy and kill. It is no illusion. Bin Laden doesn’t know much but he knows one big thing:God is Great. That is the source of his terrible almost unbeatable power. He has faith that in the long run he and the believers will outlast the unbelievers and achieve a Manzikert and thus wipe out the legions of the Great Satan.

“A paralyzing problem “inside the Beltway” is that our ruling class has been educated out of religious fervor. Even officials and bureaucrats who attend a church or synagogue each week no longer comprehend the life-shaking power of revelation, the transformative ecstasy of glimpsing the divine, or the exonerating communalism of living faith. Emotional displays of belief make the functional agnostic or social atheist nervous; he or she reacts with elitist disdain. Thus we insist, for our own comfort, that our enemies do not really mean what they profess, that they are as devoid of a transcendental sense of the universe as we are. “

MUNRO: I think Peters is right in this. In my experience the many liberal arts university elite look at religion with horror and disdain and (in my view) deep prejudice. Many schools of (Teacher) Education have become schools of Deweyite Socialism , Secularism and Atheism. Marx and other Marxists are quoted incessantly as authorities but Cicero? Jesus? Lao Tzo? Augustine? Aristotle? How about Barzun or Highet? That Great Tradition is just cast aside but the New. I am very aware of what we are facing; I find it incredible that our elites do not know. But few of our elites were raised by a Regimental Sergeant Major who fought the Turks and who visited Hagia Sophia in 1919 and told me about it –it was a Mosque then now it is a museum but the important thing it is no longer a Cathedral of the Christian faith. He had fought and lived among the Believers and he did not like or trust them. But he said they had a burning, fanatical, undying faith. Give those devils dynamite, rifles, automatic weapons and a million rounds of ammunition and , he said, they would cause a lot of trouble. The only thing they understood (he did not say ‘they’) was a bayonet to the throat.


Behind all its entertaining bravado, Islam is fighting for its life, for validation.

Islam, in other words, is on the ropes, despite no end of nonsense heralding “Eurabia” or other Muslim demographic conquests…. If demography were all there was to it, China and India long since would have divided the world between them.

MUNRO: I disagree with Peters here. The problem with the West is DEMOGRAPHIC COLLAPSE combined with MASSIVE IMMIGRATION FROM THE third world. In Europe most of these are non-Christians. But he is right that Islam is fighting for its life and terrified that its youth will join the rock culture.

PETERS: The resultant rage is immeasurable; jealousy may be the greatest unacknowledged strategic factor in the world today.

MUNRO: Ah the one of the seven deadly sins! Of course jealousy is very important. It is the primary reason that Arabs , particularly Palestinians hate Jews. Jews are successful, victorious and rich. Palestinians are complaining failures. Peters is certainly right that we must be prepared for all kinds of war even a general war against China. Personally, I think war with China is inevitable or surrender that will yield to them South Korea, Japan and Taiwan.
Many writers assume that if the West fights Islamic fundamentalism then Islamic fundamentalism will lose.

But one must wonder. As a man of faith I see Islam as a culture of great staying power; the only sub-cultures in the West that can equal it as far as I can see are the Mormon Church and the Observant(Orthodox Jews). Christian Orthodox and Roman Catholic cultures still have some strength but are much weakened. They do not have the strength to confront Islam; ironically many secular European children today may intermarry with Muslims eventually or be converted to that tenacious faith. Nature and Faith abhor a vacuum. Spain in the year 1000 was about 60-75% Muslim and many of El Cid’s soldiers were Muslim or of Muslim or Mozarabe (Arabic-speaking) backgrounds. But the career of El Cid and the Reconquista arrested the Islamization of Spain until modern times. But Islam is making a come back in Spain and France and is arguably as strong today as it was in those countries in the beginning of the 8th century. Many Spanish names like Guadalupe, Fatima and Medina are of course Arabic; it would be ironic if Spain became Islamic after all over one thousand years after the death of El Cid (1099).

I have been a catechist for over 20 years and have travelled what used to be called Christendom. Areas that were truthfully 99% Christian only 80 years ago or 40 years ago are now mostly Christian in name only. Most of the youth are highly secularized and embrace abortion (as a form of birth control) as well as pre-marital sex and artificial birth control. Most have positive views of Planned Parenthood as a ‘good’ organization. It may be good but it is inherently an anti-family and anti-Catholic organization. Some would say anti-Western as well. I live in a conservative community and yes Catholics still have demographic strength as compared to mainline Protestants but I would say no more than 10% or 20% of the youth are serious, believing and enthusiastic Catholics. That’s enough to keep the old edifice going for a few generations particularly since this small minority may produce 30 to 50% of Catholic Children. It is as if there are two Catholic churches today; the Catholic Church of divorced childless Sotomayor and the Church of the faithful. The Gov. Sanford affair was disheartening to me, particularly, because his wife was a very well-educated Irish Catholic and had borne him four children which is unusual for a college educated American woman (Sara Palin is even more unusual in this respect) I wonder what impact Sanford’s infidelities will have on the faith of his wife and children.

If the West does not have the strength, politically and demographically and the will to defend itself within its own borders how can it possibly defeat fundamentalist Islam beyond its borders?

The shadow of Dhimmitude and Islamization is upon us all. Gibbon’s vision of Minarets at Oxford has come to pass already! Gibbon, if he were alive today would be shocked and frightened for the future of England and the West.

Praise the Lord say I –and pass the ammunition. We are going to need plenty of both if we are to survive as a society and as a culture.


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