Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Are We the Next Israel?

Christopher Hitchens writing in Slate:

What nobody in authority thinks us grown-up enough to be told is this: We had better get used to being the civilians who are under a relentless and planned assault from the pledged supporters of a wicked theocratic ideology. These people will kill themselves to attack hotels, weddings, buses, subways, cinemas, and trains. They consider Jews, Christians, Hindus, women, homosexuals, and dissident Muslims (to give only the main instances) to be divinely mandated slaughter victims. Our civil aviation is only the most psychologically frightening symbol of a plethora of potential targets. The future murderers will generally not be from refugee camps or slums (though they are being indoctrinated every day in our prisons); they will frequently be from educated backgrounds, and they will often not be from overseas at all. They are already in our suburbs and even in our military. We can expect to take casualties. The battle will go on for the rest of our lives. Those who plan our destruction know what they want, and they are prepared to kill and die for it. Those who don't get the point prefer to whine about "endless war," accidentally speaking the truth about something of which the attempted Christmas bombing over Michigan was only a foretaste. While we fumble with bureaucracy and euphemism, they are flying high. (emphasis ended)
Watching a news show or special or something several months back I remember them showing a schoolyard playground in Israel. Among the slides and swings and jungle gym were brightly colored bomb shelters. Even the youngest of the young children in Israel know that when the siren blows they have mere moments to get in the shelter. Every building, every event, every person is a target. Is that our future?

I agree with every word that Hitchen’s writes but I disagree with the finality with which he writes. There is a certain acceptance, an “it is what it is” about his words. I don’t accept that we are incapable of defeating our enemies. I want Hitchens to write one more paragraph, the happy ending, so to speak. I don’t think he’ll do that nor is it his job. We have an enemy bent on depriving us of our lives and our freedom. We must find the resolve to write our own happy ending.

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