Manliness and the War on Terror

David Warren on Men Without Chests.

Hat tip: Geezer at Innocent Bystanders, who also quotes C.S. Lewis.

I don’t think the west suffers from a lack of manliness yet, although we may be taming our upcoming generation. I don’t completely disagree with Mr. Warren about the journalists, but let’s not be overly general about the west.

The reason this War on Terror will last so long is that we’re fighting it in half-measures. Why do we do this? Bad strategery? No, it’s deeper than that. It’s our quintessentially American belief that freedom of religion is innate in all mankind. Thus, we don’t want to kill our terrorist problem at the root, which would involve making a lot of imams, mullahs and clerics dead or disappeared in the night. It would involve bombing madrassas where hatred of the west is not only spread, but where young clerics learn to spread it. I think we’re waging the War on Terror the way we are in hopes that if we liberalize these societies where such hate and violence are taught openly and fervently, that the problem will evaporate. I think we’re hoping that with the introduction of classically liberal ideals such as democracy, rule of law, private property, etc the impetus for terrorism will go away and then so will the terrorism.

But the homegrown bombers in London prove this wrong. These guys were young men, looking for a deeper faith and more meaning. Teenagers often take things to extremes. I don’t say this to excuse them for what they were planning, but to implicate others as well. And first on the list is the radical imams who brought these kids over from their parents version of Islam to their own death-loving kind. Next on the list is the rest of the Muslim community for not denouncing this kind of teaching openly and loudly. And last is the secular education system and entertainers who bash the west and its values as if the world had EVER offered a better alternative.

The answer to terrorists being “grown” in America or abroad is simple. We stamp it out wherever it’s taught, by violence when necessary. But we Americans don’t believe in religious wars. To paraphrase a recently popular movie though, we’d best start believing. We’re in one.

It’s not manliness we lack; it’s the will to do what’s against our shared American values. But as rogue states get ready to arm themselves with nuclear weapons, we’re running out of other options.

One Response

  1. […] Dex has a different angle, examining the topic of our general resolve, as a culture, to win this war, in conflict with our basic belief in freedom of religion: […]

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