Finding Truth in Nate’s Post

The blogosphere had a lot of reaction to Nate of VN’s post in which he criticized America (to put it gently), to which my co-blogger Mr. McClarey has already responded. Nate has wisely revised his post so that the main sentence reads:

America is one of the greatest forces for evil in the world in the history of mankind.

I think there is some truth in this statement.Now, I don’t think it’s a terribly useful endeavor to start judging whether America is the most evil country ever or close to that. I have no idea what the standard which we could use to judge such a question would be, much less figure out how to quantify the evil done in comparison to past evil. For my money, America has not shut off access to the sacraments by slaughtering priests or closing Churches so I would have a hard time accepting that America is one of the worst countries ever.

What I like about Nate’s statement is that is mentions force. It is undeniable that America is or at least was the most powerful country in history. We don’t call the president the leader of the free world for nothing. Politically, Economically, Culturally, and Militarily America exerts considerable power, both directly and indirectly. America has often used or attempted to use this power for good, in order to improve the lives of people globally.

However, when America fails in its mission, this power can wreak extensive damage and evil. We here can all agree that the evil of abortion just within the United States has been terrible; America has often tried to use its power to bring that evil into other places of the world. We can see this too in the Middle East; America’s efforts to secure our oil supply and secure Israel has caused tremendous trouble in Egypt and elsewhere. I would also argue the nuclear weapons we developed are another example. We could debate this, but there are many other examples of when America exerted its power in a less than Christian way. When this force goes wrong, it has the power to force a lot of evil consequences.

To make my argument irrefutable, I shall quote Spider-man: With great power, comes great responsibility. America has great power, and thus has great responsibility to use that power well and to avoid doing evil with it, as it can wreak great evil with it.

Now, what’s my point? Simply this: America’s great power for evil places upon us as American citizens an even greater responsibility  to be active in our world. We as Catholics need to undertake the greatest efforts to ensure our country acts properly. This includes direct action (like voting) and indirect action (blogging; witnessing to Christ in our lives; etc.). It probably ought to make us fearful of the power and seek to reduce it via principles of subsidiarity.

America’s power can do a lot of evil. Even if we argue about how the history of how well that power has been used, the extent of that power makes serious demands upon us both as Catholics and Americans, regardless of which site we blog at.

After all, Spider-man said so.

26 Responses to Finding Truth in Nate’s Post

  • American Knight says:

    Spiderman is right. We do have a greater responsibility because of our greater power and that applies to Catholics in America all the more. May God have mercy on us.

    There is a problem with this kind of statement though. I am not criticizing you for stating it, I am merely trying to urge caution – probably for my own thoughts more than yours. How do we define America? Is America our general government? Is it our state governments? Our communities? The Christian faithful in American? The secular progressives? Our trans-national financial elite? John Edwards, poor mess that he is, may have been on to something. He talked of two Americas. Perhaps there are more than two.

    Some of us are on the front lines trying to make a difference in light of the fullness of truth. I think this blog does a fine job of that, so does LiveAction and 40 Days for Life. Many of us are more protestant than Protestants. Way too many of us are more secular than some secular progressives. It is very dangerous to indict an entire country based on the perverse actions of some, numerous as they may be. Especially a country as plural as we are. Can we blame all the Russians, or even the majority of them, for the Soviet threat? From one perspective, yes. And we can blame all Americans for the scourge of abortion, for we have allowed it to happen for my entire lifetime and contributed to its evil with our sins. However, sinners we are and sinners we shall remain until we are perfected by the One Who is like us in everything but sin. The question is can you truly blame repentant sinners for the sins of those who wield power and abuse it without remorse or repentance?

    On balance, the dream that is America, is a force for good in the world. Numerous evils have been destroyed because of us and practically no one else. Most of the evils we do are actually initiated by the parasitic infiltration of our once Republic. The numerous people who have had conversions to Christianity in general and our Holy Church in particular, the Tea Parties, even an apostate like Glenn Beck (although his anti-Catholic bigotry is on the increase – pray for the lost brother) are screaming for us to turn back to God.

    I don’t think the issue is that America is too powerful, the issue, as you brought up, is subsidiarity as embodied in our foundation in federalism. America needs to be more powerful, much more powerful, yet that power has to be restrained by the Constitution and the separation of powers, especially between the general government and the states and commonwealths.

    We also have to firmly establish that the principles of this country are Christian – whether intended or not. The reason 1776 was not 1789 is the Christian character of the majority of people who came to these shores. Sadly since the Christian principles this country was established upon are Protestant and had a strong Masonic influence, they are prone to decay at a faster rate than if the principles were articulated from a Catholic perspective. We had our chance several decades ago and we became protestants instead.

    The powerbrokers and transnational financiers are bringing about a new world order through chaos in the Middle East, economic collapse in the West and the rising Communist threat from the East. We do have a responsibility to check that and overwhelm it with power – yet that power can only come from one nation under God.

    Good post.

  • Art Deco says:

    America has often tried to use its power to bring that evil into other places of the world.

    How so?

    We can see this too in the Middle East; America’s efforts to secure our oil supply and secure Israel has caused tremendous trouble in Egypt and elsewhere.

    Care to elaborate?

  • Mark Noonan says:

    Art Deco,

    What is meant by, “secure Israel” is “why don’t we stop supporting the Jewish democracy and just cut a deal with the barbarians who wish to kill her?”. Its easier that way – always and ever it is easier to find flaws in a fellow democracy than to confront the tyrants out to kill the democracy. What is most absurd about such a view – especially for an American – is that THERE IS NO WAY TO KNOW if support for Israel inflames actual Moslems in the Middle East against us. Its not like they have free elections there where someone running on a “kill the Jews” platform bests the “why don’t we build up our own nation?” platform. The only place we’ve had a semblance of such in the area are Iraq and Afghanistan…and I note that anti-Israel actions appear low on the priority list.

  • Mark Noonan says:

    The thought that America is a force for evil in the world – let alone the main or even one of the main – is absurd. But for America, no civilization would exist in this Year of Our Lord, 2011. It would all have been destroyed – by some form of hateful, anti-human, anti-Christian ideology which grew out of the intellectual swamp called the “enlightenment”. Gravely flawed as are all human institutions, the United States is not only the most powerful nation in human history, but by far the very best.

  • American Knight says:

    Mark, I agree, we are the very best when compared to all others; however, we are to aspire to more and the fact is that we are sliding toward more and more evil. We must turn this tide and it is up to the Christian faithful to do it.

    As for why Moslems hate Israel. Why not? Moslems, at least those who are committed (large numbers of Moslems are secularists), must fight and die to subjugate Dar Al Harb (the House of War) to Dar Al Islam (the House of Peace). That means that anything which is not entirely under Moslem law (and the particular brand of the victor – Salafi, Khomeini, whatever) the Moslem is obligated to wage war. Israel is convenient, America is the most powerful; however, the disdain would continue anyway.

    Israel has committed atrocities against the indigenous (1940s) population of Palestine; nevertheless, the Palestinians faced worse from Moslem regimes. If we were to solve the problem in the Holy Land and have peace between the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza and Israel, Moslems would still hate Israel and America. It will not end, it will not stop until the Moslems are dead or, preferably, converted through the intercession of Our Blessed Mother Mary.

  • G-Veg says:

    Suggesting that a people or their countries are a force for good or for evil is problematic from the starting gate. The generalization that is required makes it an absurd argument.

    Was Rome a force for good or for evil? I suppose that depends at least on who you are and when you lived. Looking back, we can glory in her art, architecture, laws, etc. We can also pull out Christian martyrdom, the destruction of the Temple, slavery, and the leveling of Carthage to make a founded charge that Rome was utterly contemptible.

    We can go through that exercise for each of the predecessors of our culture and, at each juncture, be spot on with more than adequate evidence to illustrate our points. But, what is the point of the exercise?

    I suggest that the entire discussion comes from the mistaken belief that there is such a thing as “human progress” – to my mind, an absurd belief not founded on experience at all. In comparison to ancestors our lives are longer, healthier, and less given to the vagaries that plagued every generation before us. We are also isolated, self-absorbed, ever more alienated from nature and God, and encumbered with worries that drive more of us insane than ever. Are we “better” off? Are we “worse” off? How do we even analyze that?

    Scripture and Catholic teaching concentrate on our individual relationship to the world and people around us. It is only these relationships that we are responsible for. Do we pass by the hungry and the cold with downcast eyes and hands in pockets? If so, WE pay the consequence, not some amorphous “society” or “nation.” So it is with all sin.

    I don’t believe that America is blessed or cursed by our individual behavior. That is a Westboro Baptist absurdity. I DO, however, believe that God and Satan use the world and all of its institutions as they will. Where America does good, God’s hand is sovereign, where it does ill, He permits Satan to corrupt.

    I don’t have any idea why this is so but I am pretty sure that America’s manifest blessings are not given on my account any more than my legion of faults appear on yours.

  • Art:

    America has often tried to use its power to bring that evil into other places of the world.

    How so?

    Well, when we’ve funded abortions and contraception overseas, particularly in developing areas like Africa.

    Am Knight:
    How do we define America? Is America our general government? Is it our state governments? Our communities? The Christian faithful in American? The secular progressives? Our trans-national financial elite? John Edwards, poor mess that he is, may have been on to something. He talked of two Americas. Perhaps there are more than two.

    You make a good point, one which I think shows how hard it would be for us to determine whether “America” does more good than ill.

    I used America in its broadest sense, to include not just the government but its businesses and its citizens. So just voting the right way isn’t enough; a change in culture that affects all areas of life.

    Mark Noonan:
    But for America, no civilization would exist in this Year of Our Lord, 2011. It would all have been destroyed – by some form of hateful, anti-human, anti-Christian ideology which grew out of the intellectual swamp called the “enlightenment”. Gravely flawed as are all human institutions, the United States is not only the most powerful nation in human history, but by far the very best.

    It’s true that the United States did a lot of work to help prevent the world from being overrun from Communists or Nazis. But “by far the very best?” As with Nate’s claim, I think arguing the US is the very worst or the very best is useless. How to compare America’s slavery & abortion to the crimes of other nations.

  • R.C. says:

    We have used our power in such-and-such a way; and we know what happened as a result.

    Question: What would have happened, had we done otherwise?

    Can you answer that question? I’m not sure I can. And a far smarter and wiser man than I (C.S.Lewis) once put it into the mouth of his fictional avatar of Christ (Aslan) to say that “No one is ever told what would have happened.”

    Has the U.S. been a net force for evil? I suppose one would have to examine all the wars, all the economic output, all the diplomatic actions, all the disaster-rescue operations, all the private charitable contributions, all the production of movies (good, bad, tasteful, pornographic), all the medicines, all the timewasters…all of it, and ask in each case, what alternative action did we almost take?

    Then I suppose we could assign a net evil-or-good score (say, on a range from negative 10 to positive 10) to the action we took, and to the alternative action we would otherwise have taken, and subtract the road not taken from the road taken, and total up all the scores, and say: This is how good (or evil) America has been.

    A pointless exercise, I suspect.

    Better to note, in a more general way, the areas in which we usually stumble and try to avoid them in the future.

    And of course it might be good to remember not to be too wound up in America, for all her momentary importance. For in a choice between making America saintlier, and making you saintlier, it’s objectively more useful to make you saintlier.

    Does that seem shocking? Well, keep in mind I don’t mean by that that you shouldn’t be a good citizen, with all that entails. So no one is saying you can’t work on both America and your soul.

    But here are my reasons for saying that in the event of an either/or choice, you should prioritize the sanctification of your soul: First, it’s entirely within your power (with God’s help) and your responsibility to work for the sanctification of your soul; whereas political activism may not be your calling, and for most of us, nobody ever listens. (Really, why am I bothering to type this note? Habit, I suppose.)

    But second (and far more important) America is profoundly temporary. We will all outlive her. After all, in a few hundred years, will America still be here? Maybe, maybe not; but in a few thousand, I guarantee she won’t. In ten thousand? Please. In a few billion years? Not even the sun will be what it was. And that’s all assuming the Lord doesn’t come back this time tomorrow.

    But you? You’ll still be around, for good, or for ill. Every Christian ought to give a thought to who he plans to invite to his forty millionth birthday bash, and whether there is a patron saint of party favors. He also has to give a thought to whether he, himself, will make it to his forty millionth birthday party, or whether he’ll be in less comfortable environs.

    Yes, the investment in sanctification here and now is a good investment. Next to that, America is a passing fancy. It’s a saintly thing to work for good, so work for the betterment of America when the opportunity arises. But do so for Christ’s sake, not America’s. That’s the work made of gold and precious jewels (1 Cor 3). America, in the final analysis, may be so much straw.

  • Elaine Krewer says:

    “It is a serious thing to live in a world of possible gods and goddesses, to realize that the dullest person you meet may one day be something which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship; or else a horror and a corruption which you meet now only in a nightmare. All day long we are helping each other to one or the other of these two destinations. There are no ordinary people. You have never met a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations, these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we work with, play with, marry, snub, or exploit: immortal horrors or everlasting splendors.” — C.S. Lewis, “The Weight of Glory”

  • Art Deco says:

    Well, when we’ve funded abortions and contraception overseas, particularly in developing areas like Africa.

    Intermittently, mostly through donations to United Nations agencies. Regrettable, but a very small part of the United States Government’s activities, and an exceedingly small part of the troubles that Africa faces.

    You still have not explained what ‘tremendous trouble’ in Egypt or any other place is a result of American foreign policy in the Near East.

  • Phillip says:

    “How so?

    Well, when we’ve funded abortions and contraception overseas, particularly in developing areas like Africa.”

    This is of course true. Though other countries on their own and through the UN also promote this. If I recall correctly, the American Mexico City Policy sought to prevent funding for abortion overseas. This policy was initiated by Reagan, stopped by Clinton, reinitiated by Bush and stopped again by Obama. (Notice a pattern?)

    There is no societal evil of course. Evils in society are the sum of individual sin. As noted above, we need to change culture. But that change, as others have noted, needs to come through our personal conversion at every level. Thus moral businesses will grow as will moral hospitals, moral courts etc.

    This will happen with politics also. When there are moral politicians, there will be moral policies. Until then we will have support for abortion overseas when the one individual who can overturn policies like the Mexico City Policy in office does not act morally in this regard. That individual is the President. And the President now is Obama. Thus, at least in regard to this specific policy, Obama is perhaps the greatest force for evil. At least this specific evil. He and those who have enabled him to be so.

  • Mark Noonan says:

    American Knight,

    My assertion is that we don’t really know what the average Abdul on the street really thinks about such things – hey, maybe 90% of Moslems are raving Jew haters who will endure all manner of oppression and death just to kill an Israeli; but you and I don’t know that. No one does. Only when a Moslem nation has a free and fair vote can we get an indication of Moslem desires. From what we can see, we have the anomaly of Gaza, and the rest of the free votes (or, at least, quasi-free votes) showing that Moslems are, well, people…while some lip service might be given to anti-Israeli sentiment, the primary concerns are jobs, schools, health care…that sort of thing. And I bet a re-vote in Gaza – if it could be fairly done – would result in Hamas being ejected from power (seems to me that they were put in to power mostly on the strength of their not being in power at the time). “Kill ‘em all” isn’t a good campaign slogan.

    As for conversion – ultimately, that is what it will take to establish peace and justice everywhere.

  • Mark Noonan says:

    Michael,

    We expended 600,000 lives paying for our sin of slavery – I think that if the shedding of blood is necessary for the remission of sin, then we’re no longer bound by that one.

    All human societies will have failings – America is no different from any other nation in this regard. But America could have subjugated the whole world in 1945 – there was no one to stop us. But, we didn’t. No one can compel the United States to come to the aid of another nation. But when disaster strikes it isn’t even a debate here – the President is ardently backed by his fellow Americans is expending whatever is necessary to aid the suffering. The graves of America’s war dead are spread over the globe – not one of them died to enrich himself, but in order to help others, often those who didn’t even share his nationality.

    There has never been anything quite like the United States. We have fallen low in some areas – ending abortion is key to the long term health of our nation. It would be better if American Catholicism became more ardent (dare I say it, more militant?); it would be best if we Catholics would not just man the ramparts of civilization, but would march out to conquer the citadels of the foe. We can always be more wise, more generous, more patient…but we’re still the best.

  • American Knight says:

    Mark,

    The false god of Democracy is the folly of fools. Democracies will always become some form of tyranny. This is why the Founding Fathers gave us a Republic that uses democratic processes and not an outright Democracy, more properly called a Mob-ocracy. Open elections amongst a people that are not predisposed to a democratic process is just as dangerous but the danger is manifest sooner.

    Egypt has no legal protection for freedom of religion and does not forbid a Mosque-ocracy (some erroneously refer to this as theocracy, but that simply means a government by God, which is always a good thing). The current agitation is designed to create a Hegelian choice that leads to nothing good either way. We are forced to choose a secular autocrat or a degenerate Islamist state. This is a false choice. Egypt needs time, with a tethered Mubarack at the helm to develop laws that prevent an Islamic takeover and eliminate the structure for a dictator. The preferable choice for Arab, Persian, Turkish and Moslem dominated lands is a parliamentary monarchy for a generation or two and then a move to some form of Republic. Without a fundamental reform of Moslem ideology these nations will always tend to conquest and empire because that is the only way Mohammad was able to spread his cult.

    If we have free elections and wait to see what happens, as you suggest, what we’ll find is that we blew an opportunity to help subjugated minorities like women, Coptic Christians (mostly Orthodox, some Catholic) and others from having their rights protected because Islamists or Socialists will rule Egypt. Socialists will always collapse because of the unworkability of that fallacy, Moslems will endure because of the twisted theological power of their fascist/socialist imperial/conquest impulse.

    Islam is a religion of power, conquest, plunder, unchecked passion and Empire. Waiting to see if that is true or not as akin to choosing to murder someone just to see if they’ll actually die. Somethings are evident before they are actualized. A Moslem/socialist autocracy/oligarchy is inevitable in an Egypt with open democracy. The price of waiting to see what happens will be the slaughter of a large percentage of 15 million Christians.

  • Mark Noonan says:

    American Knight,

    Well, of course our system of government is best – a blend of monarchy, oligarchy and democracy with a series of strong, sovereign States to act as a check upon the central power…pity we’ve strayed so far from that. But, still, in the end the only way to ascertain if a government has the consent of the governed is to poll the voters at regular intervals.

    But, still, I don’t believe that for the most part people will consciously choose evil in a democratic process. Give Joe Moslem his choice and my bet – which may be proved wrong, of course – is that he’ll choose to live and build rather than kill and destroy.

  • Art Deco says:

    Give Joe Moslem his choice and my bet – which may be proved wrong, of course – is that he’ll choose to live and build rather than kill and destroy.

    As a rule, people’s expressed preferences in voting are congruent with maintaining certain minima for a constitutional state. The exceptions are often political-sociological perfect storms: brief periods where abusive populist movements carry the day (Germany in 1929-33, Czechoslovakia in 1945-48) under conditions of abnormal stress. Regrettably, the Arab world and adjacent loci in the Near East and Central Asia are the vast exception. The disastrous attempt at constructing a liberal democratic order in Algeria in 1988-91 should be kept in mind. I would give it a fifty-fifty shot in Egypt as regards the possibilities of parliamentary government in the first instance. Even if constitutionalist parties carry the day, you still have the entropic tendencies which infect elected administrations in the third world and result in a lapse into military government or some other sort of authoritarian order (or a lapse into insurgency or civil war).

  • American Knight says:

    Mark,

    Please don’t take this is as a personal insult. Your attitude seems naive at best and stinks of Dhimmitude. Perhaps you don’t know too many Moslems or Arabs, Turks, Persians and others infected by Mohammad’s disease. Maybe they are merely lying to you because they think you are a stupid, duped Westerner (a very common attitude). Either way, the sad fact is that the Mohammaden cult has infected most of the Middle-East and many in the West too. Islam as a twisted ideology, it is very worldly couched in poorly copied Judeo-Christian and Zoroastrian imagery and it is totally imperial and legalizes plunder, rape and all manner of other ills.

    Good people indoctrinated in this ideology will vote for autocracy almost every time you give them ‘free’ elections. Save for perhaps Lebanon, but then again, it is the only Middle-Eastern nation with nearly half Christian population.

  • American Knight says:

    I am not saying that freedom and democratic processes cannot work in the Middle-East. It is natural for humans to seek freedom. The matter is the structures of freedom don’t exist because there are too many interested parties in keep in the status quo. They may want to fight each other for that control, but they certainly don’t want people to have it. The best way to keep people down is to cage them in a prison of the mind. Islam was designed to do that and it is effective. It takes a generation or two that learns the ways of self-determination (vis. political and civil rights) for democratic processes to actually work. Most of the Middle-Eastern people’s don’t have that yet. A constitutional or parliamentary monarchy with the help of free people from the West is the best transitional structure to facilitate a democratic process. Removal of one authoritarian for another or an Islamist despotism is only going to perpetuate the cycle of imprisonment. For some in the world with the lust for power in their hearts, that is the most profitable method.

  • Mark Noonan says:

    American Knight,

    I have known a few Moslems over the years – work with one to this day, as it turns out. I don’t know how fully devout he is, but he does keep the fasts…and considers his homeland, Pakistan, to be absolutely bonkers…but also certain that the ultimate source of the trouble is India stirring up hatreds and rivalries. I’ve known several Iranians over the years and when you seek out definitions of the words “lady” and “gentleman”, you can’t go far wrong by just pointing to an Iranian. A bit of the plight of Christians in Moslem lands has been brought home to me by striking up a friendship with a West Bank Catholic (immigrated to the US, now a citizen). There is a dislike for Israel in him (though not a hatred; certainly no desire to see harm done to Jews) and a sympathy for the Moslem Palestinian point of view (but not blinded to the rank corruption and cruelty in some of the Moslem leadership). The main thing I take away from such associations is that they are just people.

    Naturally, it would be better if they were Catholic people. One of the worst things which ever happened to the world was the failure of the Crusades. Additionally, it is getting pretty conclusive by now that no Christian (or, indeed, non-Moslem) can trust himself to Moslem rule. In light of this, my favored policy would be to set up Christian States (or, at least, internally self-governing enclaves) where ever sufficient Christians live in Moslem lands. Mohammed’s heresy is poisonous and we should seek means to undermine it and eventually do away with it…but, meantime, my view is that we’re more likely to get a reasonable Islam out of votes than we will out of tyrants.

    This is not to say that the people won’t vote for tyrants who will then go to war against all that isn’t Islam…but I doubt it would happen much, or at all. People – even Moslem people who have been hoodwinked by Islam – don’t really want to die in endless war.

  • American Knight says:

    Mark you and I agree on far more than we differ, so for fun, let’s just focus on where we differ :) Unstructured democratic elections in Moslem lands will lead to Marxism, jihadism or a sick totalitarian blend of both. Following that will always be war.

    People who happen to be only culturally Moslem aren’t really Moslems. That does not mean they cannot be devout worshipers of God, as they understand Him, it means that they have not adopted the Code of Mohammad, just the minimal piety. I think this is where the hope for Moslem dominated lands is. Unlike Christianity the Moslems were not given the deposit of faith, essentially, Islam suffered from the Protestant heresy with the death of Mohammad. Islam would have died in the Arabian desert if not for the Code of Mohammad, jihadism. As an imperial force of plunder and conquest, along with the legitimation of twisted human passions led the charge for the conquest of Christian lands by Moslems. Belloc states that the corruption of the Christian Roman Empires led to the appeal of Islam, which liberated the slave, the debtor and the taxpayer if they converted to Islam. We face a similar situation today thanks to the corruption fostered by our fiat money schemes and the general lack of religion among our youth.

    I agree with you that pious Moslems who do not follow the Code of Mohammad would not choose to die in endless wars, but many, far more than most of us think are not pious Moslems. Many Moslems are jihadists and an overwhelming number are young men indoctrinated into jihadism through coercive measures including homosexualism and materialism. In some respects a large army of jihadists is the new Hitler youth. Perverted through homosexualism, releasing the basest human passions making them dangerous killing machines. Rather than the supremacy of the Aryan race, they seek the supremacy of Islam (although the inherent racism leads to hatred for Jews and blacks – in Arabic called a’abeed, which means slave – and strife amongst the Turks, Arabs and Persians as well as other minorities).

    Nazism was not resisted adequately by moderate Germans and jihadism is not being resisted by ‘moderate’ (more appropriately secular) Moslems. Jihadism is a force that needs to be defeated based on its intrinsic evil, met on the battlefield of ideas and the field of war – this is not avoidable. This is not the first time God has allowed the rise of Islam to chastise an apostate Christendom (Western Civilization), we have met God’s challenge before and we can meet it again, but only with Catholic Heroes leading the charge. It is time for saints to rise up and that requires humility and pious obedience. It is time to pray.

    Coming from the Middle-East and having Moslems and secularists in my extended family I can assure you that the committed will lie to you, the lukewarm will be swayed by pride to support the jihadi line and the cowardly will bow to the power of Islam. Either you are with the devil, a Dhimmi or stand against evil – those are the choices. It is in the honestly pious that we can find an ally and they are not as vocal as the jihadis, nor as powerful in mass propaganda as the oil regime autocrats or the Marxists. The battle for the Middle of the Earth is the clash of civilizations and the only way we can liberate the poor people of the Arab, Persian, Turkish and Moslem lands is through military confrontation of the jihadi threat and delivering the ideals of Western democratic processes and witnessing to the truth of the Liberator of the Oppressed – Jesus the Christ.

    Of course, we must remember that evangelizing in Moslem lands carries the penalty of death as does conversion away from Islam. We are at war, some of us just don’t know it . . . yet.

  • Mark Noonan says:

    AK,

    Before we can mount a Crusade we’ll have to re-convert our own civilization – meanwhile, its a matter of what, practically, is best for American interests. Backing tyrants doesn’t work – we’re about to have one heck of a mess in Egypt and a mess which will be exacerbated for us by the fact that in the Egyptian mind we’re tied to the old regime while the Moslem Brotherhood (falsely) represents an improvement. Had we always stood aloof from the Nasser/Sadat/Mubarak regime, we wouldn’t have that particular problem…and our efforts to convert the Moslems of Egypt to at least a semblance of decency would be more fruitful.

    We have two wars to deal with – the current one with Islam (or, at least, a section thereof) and the coming war with China (while nothing is certain, any reading of history prepares the mind for the fact that once the militarists are in the saddle, they’ll attack). The war with China is the more immediately threatening, while the Islamist threat is more fundamental and long term. My view is that our policy towards Islam must be that of trying to settle them down, lest we get stuck with a two-theater war once China moves. How to settle them down is the tricky business – if we still lived in Christendom, it would be easier…but as we live at the tail end of a post-Christian world, it is hard to get people to understand the nature of the threat.

    And, so, we’ll just have to weave our way through…though we can take our opportunities as they come. For instance, the next time Hezbollah opens up on northern Israel, we can intervene as “peacekeepers” with the actual goal of forcing Hezbollah out of southern Lebanon and setting up a refuge for the Lebanese Christians…we can also work towards at least an autonomous Assyria in Iraq and some sort of internal self rule for the Copts in Egypt. Meanwhile, a judicious application of American power and bribes can help us to neutralize the Islamists, at least to the point where those who seek to directly attack us have less opportunity for recruitment, training and action.

    Ultimately we cannot hope to fight of Islam until we provide a better alternative – a Christian West which will be every bit as moral as desired without all the barbarism and secret depravity exhibited in Islam.

  • American Knight says:

    Mark,

    I totally agree, although, I think we are already in a two theater war. We are engaged in a soft-war with jihadism (much softer since Jan 2007, and especially Jan 2009) and an economic war with the Communist/Capitalist Chinese. I think this is WWIV (the so-called Cold War being WWIII) and it has already begun and it will take place in the Middle-East – that’s where the oil is and that is the land mass division between the ‘free’ West and the ‘communist’ East (although sometimes I can’t tell the difference).

    We have to employ all methods and I agree that cleaning up our own house is priority one. However, before we launch a Crusade, I am not sure we could do such a thing with our increasing irreligiousity, we MUST defeat the jihadi’s militarily, while we undermine them ideologically. To undermine them, we have to reChristianize the West as a moral alternative to Islam and support and inspire the non-Marxist prodemocratic forces in the Middle-East (women, Christians and other minorities like Kurds and Druse).

    In a conventional war with China – we lose. In a nuclear conflict with China – everyone loses. The Bible doesn’t seem to point to China as the outside enemy, it seems to point North to Gog from Magog and have you noticed how quiet Putin as been through all the recent Middle-East action? I know we can’t know the future, but it is eerie.

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