During World War II, British singer Vera Lynn comforted her war-weary fellow citizens with a poignant rendition of “The White Cliffs of Dover.” A portion of its lyrics goes:
There’ll be love and laughter And peace ever after. Tomorrow, when the world is free.
The shepherd will tend his sheep. The valley will bloom again. And Jimmy will go to sleep In his own little room again.
The appeal of the song lay in its promise that, once Nazi Germany was defeated, peace and normality would return.
And despite being threatened with invasion in 1940 and devastated by massive bombing raids in 1940-41, citizens of Great Britain could take heart in the following:
Nazi Germany had a capitol–Berlin–and a single, all-powerful leader–Adolf Hitler. Once Berlin was occupied and Hitler dead or captured, the war would be over.
And, for all their ferocity, German soldiers were easy to recognize: They wore gray uniforms, spoke German and waved flags emblazoned with swastikas or imperial eagles.
Wehrmacht soldiers marching through conquered France
Today, Western nations under attack by Islamic “holy warriors” face none of those advantages. Islam has no single capitol city–or leader.
The American occupation of Baghdad in 2003 triggered a nationwide insurgency. And deposing Saddam Hussein unleashed a religious war between Shia and Sunnis throughout Iraq.
Nor do Islam’s jihadist legions wear uniforms. Many of them don’t speak Arabic or wear clothing associated with Arabs, such as flowing robes and headdresses.
More ominously, millions of Islam’s potential “warriors” live within the very Western nations they despise. They can get all the instruction and inspiration they need to wreck havoc simply by going to the Internet. Or, if they have the money, by traveling overseas to such terrorist-recruiting centers as Syria.
And yet, faced with an unprecedented threat to their security, many Western leaders refuse to publicly acknowledge this fundamental truth:
Even if the West isn’t at war with Islam, Islam is at war with the West. Leaders like President Barack Obama, who insisted, at a White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism in February: “We are not at war with Islam. We are at war with people who have perverted Islam.”
And leaders like British Prime Minister David Cameron, who said on August 29, 2014: “Islam is a religion observed peacefully by over a billion people. Islamist extremism is a poisonous ideology observed by a minority.”
It was at this same press conference that Cameron announced that United Kingdom authorities would soon begin revoking the passports of British citizens traveling to Syria.
Arthur M. Cummings, the FBI’s executive assistant director for national security, has no use for such Politically Correct terms as “man-caused disasters” to refer to terrorism. Nor does he shy away from terms such as “jihadists” or “Islamists.”
“Of course Islamists dominate the terrorism of today,” he says bluntly.
In May, 2014, Steven Emerson, a nationally recognized expert on terrorism, posted an ad in The New York Times, warning about the dangers of PC-imposed censorship:
“Our nation’s security and its cherished value of free speech has been endangered by the bullying campaigns of radical Islamic groups, masquerading as ‘civil rights’ organizations, to remove any reference to the Islamist motivation behind Islamic terrorist attacks.
“These groups have pressured or otherwise colluded with Hollywood, the news media, museums, book publishers, law enforcement and the Obama Administration in censoring the words ‘Islamist’, ‘Islamic terrorism’, ‘radical Islam’ and ‘jihad’ in discussing or referencing the threat and danger of Islamic terrorism.
“This is the new form of the jihadist threat we face. It’s an attack on one of our most sacred freedoms—free speech—and it endangers our very national security. How can we win the war against radical Islam if we can’t even name the enemy?”
He has a point–and a highly legitimate one.
Imagine the United States fighting World War II–and President Franklin Roosevelt banning the use of “fascist” in referring to Nazi Germany or “imperialist” in describing Imperial Japan.
Imagine CNN-like coverage of the Nazi extermination camps, with their piles of rotting corpses and smoking gas ovens, while a commentator reminds us that “Nazism is an ideology of peace.”
Then consider these Islamic terrorist outrages of our own time:
- The 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., which snuffied out the lives of 3,000 Americans.
- The 2004 bombing of Madrid’s commuter train system.
- The attack on the London subway in 2005.
- The killing of 13 U.S. Army personnel at Fort Hood, Texas, by a Muslim army major in 2009.
- The hacking of a British soldier to death on a London street in 2013.
- The bombing of the Boston Marathon in 2013.
- The kidnapping of 300 Nigerian schoolgirls by Boko Haram in 2014.
In every one of these attacks, the perpetrators openly announced that their actions had been motivated by their Islamic beliefs.
In his groundbreaking book, The Clash of Civilizations (1996) Samuel Huntington, the late political scientist at Harvard University, noted: “The fundamental problem for the West is not Islamic fundamentalism. It is Islam, a different civilisation whose people are convinced of the superiority of their culture and are obsessed with the inferiority of their power.”
All-in-all, the future looks better for would-be Islamic conquerors than for those in the West awaiting the next Islamic atrocity.