We hear growing impatience to end the war, by doing whatever it takes to win

We are hearing from our friends and neighbors an increasing impatience with “staying the course.” We are hearing, from conservatives and moderates, and a couple of liberals too, that it is ridiculous to be in a war longer than WWII with military nonentities. We are hearing a profound impatience with the lies of the MSM and the strange-sounding political correctness of the administration. We are hearing more and more the sentiment of using whatever force is required to just make this problem go away. We hear almost no concern with how America looks to the world, and little about morality, for that matter. We’ll try to summarize some of what we’re hearing.

We have chronicled on several occasions the finding that a significant portion of America has wanted the US to use much greater force in Iraq and elsewhere against our enemies. We are hearing that this sentiment has grown even greater in recent days. We hear American patience wearing thin, as many Americans think it is absurd for the world’s mightiest power to be hamstrung by Lilliputians without and weak politicians within. We think that is happening for a variety of reasons. The provocations from Iran continue, including their deadly nuclear program and proxy Shiite war in Iraq. (The comparisons of Iran with 1930’s Germany continue to multiply.) The Hezbollah war shows that weak responses are of limited value. And the Iraqis themselves — at least so far — seem unable or unwilling to live as a peaceful society, even though they have had plenty of time to do so; America has had to up its troop strength to do for the Iraqis what they can not or will not do for themselves. Meanwhile, Islamic killers everywhere demonstrate every day that they care as little for Muslim lives as they do for infidel lives. We hear a feeling of: screw them all.

In the broader struggle against al Qaeda and its allies, we sense a similar frustration. Why are we all putting our shoes through airport detectors rather than putting our Muslim enemies’ feet to the fire? Why are we not profiling and identifying the terrorists and likely future offenders and removing them from civil society? Why do we have to put up with politicians and a seditious MSM that pretend that Muslim terrorists in our midst, who kill our fellow citizens, are anything, anything but the Islamic killers that they claim they are?

Americans are by nature not imperialists. Americans do not want to rule foreign countries. But neither do they want to feel threatened by them. We hear this from conservatives, moderates and even some liberals: the rhetoric of democracy from President Bush was okay, but it has worn out its welcome, just as the embarrassing, strangely apologetic sucking-up about peaceful religion has. America does not need five years to wipe out this unworthy enemy. America does not have to put up with Islamofascists who intimidate our government from even calling them the Islamofascists that they are. We hear again and again from Americans who are sick of politicians who lie, kowtow and demonstrate weakness. (This point goes for controlling the border as well.)

Americans spend, give or take, half a trillion dollars on the military every year. They are also sick of a lousy return on investment. We hear this from our fellow citizens: why on earth are we monkeying around with a pipsqueak like Ahmedinejad and his little country with their teeny-weeny military that is a mere 1% of America’s? Why are we not kicking ass and taking names?

It’s more than that; we hear that patience with the “moderate Muslim” world to deal with the problem of their fundamentalists has pretty much worn out. Even though President Bush has been for the most part MIA on the ideological aspect of the war against Islamic fascism, the people have come to understand a fair bit about the enemy in the last five years. The American people understand that the enemy considers it a religious duty to wage war against America, and will not be satisfied until we are all converted or killed. For five years, Americans waited patiently for the moderate Muslim world to rise up in outrage about the atrocities being carries out in the name of their religiion. Instead, Americans have heard virtual silence about the outrages. It’s been an appalling performance. Worse still, what Americans have heard is absurd accusations of racism and whining about civil liberties from community spokesmen and lawyers, and this has worn out the patience of many Americans. It was asked of Don Rumsfeld some time ago if America was creating more Muslim fanatics and terrorists than were being killed in the war: we hear that the answer for many Americans has become, who cares? Kill as many as need to be killed. For many people the theoretical questions of who is right and who is wrong have lost their meaning; the question has become who will live and who will die — and we hear that Americans want to live.

Many Americans simply do not care what the French or the Russians or the Germans or even the English think of us — let alone the Islamic world. We want to be left in peace, and unmolested by third world enemies with their various complaints. Many Americans do not care if Najaf and Fallujah or Baghdad or Teheran continue to exist as places on a map. They just want to be left alone. And they want the people threatening not to leave us alone impotent or dead. We hear disgust at the notion that Americans have to sit around waiting for whatever it is Ahmadinejad will unleash whenever he has the capability — if he’s the new Hitler, don’t wait: get rid of him and his capabilities. Waiting is simply a formula for a million dead Americans before we take him out.

To many Americans, it appears as simple as a formulation from a US president a century ago. As TR put it: Perdicaris alive or Raisuli dead, No more pussyfooting around. That’s what we hear as a larger theme in the so-called anti-war sentiment of our time.

We hear this, even from conservatives: in a certain sense, President Bush has indeed failed America. But it is not by his bellicose ways. He has, in fact, not been warlike enough, according to the wishes of many Americans. There seems to be a view that you only have a limited time to prosecute a war with a national consensus behind you, so you better make that time count, and President Bush has not adequately done so. According to this view, the United States of America should have made it plenty clear over the last five years that the last people on earth that Muslim terrorists or Islamofascist ideologues want to screw around with is us — by overwhelming, and brutal, uses of force. (The complete destruction of Fallujah might have been helpful and instructive, for example; putting Marines on trial on the word of the enemy is exactly the wrong message to send.) To many Americans, the need for overwhelming, merciless force is the lesson of this war, as it should perhaps have been the lesson of Vietnam. Americans are impatient, and they will not tolerate being in a “state of war” indefinitely. Wars are meant to be won, not endured.

We hear from many Americans who now have a terribly itchy trigger finger versus America’s declared enemies. That may be a good thing, or it may be a very bad thing, from the standpoint of making policy for a great power. Nonetheless, it is a sentiment to be ignored by politicians at their peril.

UPDATE

It would be a very fair question to ask: just how do these sentiments translate into action or policy, and we don’t know that we have an answer to that question. But we have the feeling that soon enough, the frustration we sense may well translate into the mother of all disproportionate responses after some enemy provocation. We’re not there yet, but we are nearer the tipping point than ever.

6 Responses to “We hear growing impatience to end the war, by doing whatever it takes to win”

  1. DL Says:

    Okay -so who is the candidate to sincerly bring forth these views?

  2. Black Jack Says:

    Excellent post, accurate, timely, and well put. You have correctly given voice to a range of opinions MSM seeks to suppress. Thank you.

    As for a candidate who might advance these views, not one among the current crop would risk being eviscerated by MSM for expressing such unabashedly patriotic views. However, if Rudy Giuliani were to step up and say essentially the same thing, the voters would reward him with the presidency in an overwhelming landslide.

    And, if Giuliani, or any other US President, were to attack our enemies, immediately, directly, and violently, with all the force at our disposal, a grateful people would rise up in joyful celebration and put his face on Mount Rushmore.

  3. larwyn Says:

    Bravo again Jack!
    Wish you were on a front page.

    I picked up a poll call before the 2004 elections and responded to “way Iraq war was going” as not
    happy with – we weren’t using enough force.

    Think the DEMS are going to be surprised again this
    November. Of course they and their minions are the ones who formulate most poll questions and select those
    polled who will give responses that can be used in
    DEM talking points to keep them all encouraged by their virtual Potemkin Villages.

    Then they are shocked when the shallow facade falls, pushed over by the actual vote count.

    We need a Patton or Mac, one wanted to continue WWII
    by taking on the Soviets, the other wanted to cross the 17th parallel in Korea. Had they listened to Patton in first place there would have been little need for Korean War, even if China was under Mao, he would have been surrounded by non-communist Russia.

    We are really slow learners – the NEA & Academentia make sure of that. (compelled to stick that in at every opportunity).

  4. Hans Says:

    Amen to every word in your post! I’m so disgusted with the entire political class these days that I’m unable to even read, listen to, or watch the news without becoming overwhelmed by loathing. I’m resigned to thinking that the only thing that will get this country out of it’s stupor is the loss of a city or two and a two comma casualty count. The MSM has flipped to directly supporting the enemy in their Bush Derangement Syndrome and all I can think to do is refresh my armory inventory with more guns and ammunition. I’m sick and tired of being angry and disgusted. All I can think of is that the West will continue committing suicide until a significant shock wakes it up from its politically correct slumber, and then all hell will break loose. I believe in my lifetime I’ll see Dems, RINOs, Journalists, and Muslims hanging from lamposts. Oderint, dum metuant.

  5. Wildmonk Says:

    You say:

    “If he’s the new Hitler, don’t wait: get rid of him and his capabilities. Waiting is simply a formula for a million dead Americans before we take him out.”

    I don’t think that I exaggerate to say that this is perfectly ok with a sizeable portion of the anti-American chattering classes (not Liberals, by the way, but the harder leftists like Cindy Sheehan, Michael Moore, Noam Chomsky et. al.). I’ve heard the argument that, if waiting earns us some measure of redemption for past crimes – paid for in blood – then it would be worth it. From this twisted perspective, every act of self-defense by a country as strong as America is a crime, every act of pre-emptive defense an atrocity. Ignored in all this, of course, is any proportional understanding of the threats looming during the Cold War (or a belief that the wrong side has won) or any recognition that, despite our failings, we’ve tried harder than anyone to build an example worth emulating.

    But I would tell Hans to put away his guns. We should have no illusions; such people, while of disproportionate influence, are quite small in number.

  6. Steven M. Warshawsky Says:

    “It would be a very fair question to ask: just how do these sentiments translate into action or policy, and we don’t know that we have an answer to that question. But we have the feeling that soon enough, the frustration we sense may well translate into the mother of all disproportionate responses after some enemy provocation. We’re not there yet, but we are nearer the tipping point than ever.”

    I always enjoy your postings, Dinocrat. You have brilliant insights to offer seemingly every day. But, yes, I think you are evading the real issues here: What should be done? Is there political support at home (forget abroad) to do it? And who is the man who will lead us?

    It also is unclear what you mean by “the mother of all disproportionate responses” — it sounds like you are hinting at two possibilities: (1) an American nuclear strike against some Middle Eastern nation in retaliation for “another 9/11″ and (2) a violent popular backlash against Muslims in this country in response to the same event.

    Why do you believe that either option is likely to occur? Your own previous postings have explained, in a depressingly compelling manner, how we are *unlikely* to use WMDs in retaliation for acts of terrorism on even the largest scale (perhaps, even, a nuclear attack). We may embark on “regime change” in Iran as we did in Iraq, but that hardly would be disproportionate, right?

    As for some kind of “right-wing” backlash against Muslims in the US, that would be opposed by the collective might of our federal, state, and local law enforcement authorities. So it ain’t going to happen. A few incidents of violence certainly, but they will be quickly punished and castigated by the government and the media. No large scale “anti-Muslim” terror campaign is conceivable at this stage in our society’s history. Extensive social and governmental decay would have to occur before that happens. This is more the stuff of futuristic dystopia novels than contemporary political reality.

    The truth is that more non-Mulims will be killed in this country by Muslims, than vice-versa, for many years to come. (See Beltway snipers, El Al terminal shooting, Seattle shooting rampage, San Francisco SUV rampage, North Carolina SUV rampage, etc.)

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