By Phil Lucas, Executive Editor, The News Herald, Panama City, Florida, Sunday April 4, 2004. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. The News Herald web site is found at http://www.newsherald.com/
If straight talk of savagery offends you, if you believe in ethnic and gender diversity but not diversity of thought or if you think there is an acceptable gray area between good and evil, then turn to the funny pages, and take the children, too. This piece is not for you.
We published pictures Thursday of burnt American corpses hanging from an Iraqi bridge behind a mob of grinning Muslims. Some readers didn't like it.
Mothers said it frightened their children. A woman who works with Muslim physicians thought it might offend or endanger them.
Well, we sure don't want to frighten, offend or endanger anybody, do we? That's just too much diversity to handle. I mean, somebody might get hurt.
We could fill the newspaper every morning with mobs of fanatical Muslims. They can't get along with their neighbors on much of the planet: France,Chechnya, Bosnia, Indonesia, Spain, Morocco, India, Tunisia, Somalia,etc. etc. etc. Can anybody name three ongoing world conflicts in which Muslims are not involved? Today, where there is war, there are fanatical Muslims.
We might quibble about who started what conflicts, but look at the sheer number of them.
One thing is sure. Muslim killers started the one we are in now when they slaughtered more that 3,000 people, including fellow Muslims, in New York City.
Madeleine Albright, the former secretary of state and reckless appeaser who helped get us into this mess, said last week Muslims still resent the Crusades. Well, Madam Albright, if Westerners were not such a forgiving people, we might resent them too.
Let's recap the Crusades. Muslims invaded Europe, and when they reached sufficient numbers, they imposed their intolerant religion upon Westerners by force. Christian monarchs drove them back and took the battle to their homeland. The fight lasted a couple of centuries, and we bottled them up for 1,000 years.
Now, a millennium later, Muslims have expanded forth again. Ask France. Ask England. Ask Manhattan. Two-and-a-half years ago fanatical Muslims laid siege to us. We woke up to the obvious. Our president announced it would be a very long war, then took the battle to the Islamic homeland. Sound Familiar?
Let's consider the concept of a "long war.! " Last time it was 200 years, give or take. Anybody catch Lord of the Rings? You know, the good part, the part that wasn't fiction, the part that drew us to the books and movies because it was the truest part: the titanic struggle between good and evil, between freedom and enslavement, between the individual and the state, between the celebration of life and the worshipping of death.
That's the fight we are in, and it never ends. It just has peaks and valleys.
There may be a silent majority of peaceful Muslims - some live here - but that did not save 3,000 people in the World Trade Center, the million gassed and butchered in the Middle East, the tens of thousands slain in Eastern Europe and Asia, the hundreds blown to bits in the West Bank and Spain, or the four Americans shot, burned and hung like sausage over the Euphrates as a fanatical minority of Muslims did the joyful dance of death.
Maybe we are so tolerant, we are so bent on "diversity," we are so nonjudgmental, we are so wrapped up in our six-packs and ballgames that our brains have drained to our bulbous behinds. Maybe we're so addled on Ritalin we wouldn't know which end of a gun to hold. Maybe we need a new drug advertised on TV every three minutes, one that would help us grow a backbone.
It doesn't take a Darwin to figure out that in this world the smartest,the fastest, the strongest, and the most committed always win. No exceptions.
Look at your spouse and children. Look at yourself in the mirror. Then look at the pictures from the paper last Thursday. You better look at them. Those are the people out to kill you.
Who do you think will win? You? Or them? Think you can take your ball and go home and they will leave you alone? Read a little history. Start with last week, last month, last year, and every other year back for half a century. Then go back a thousand years. Nobody hides from this fight.
Like it or not, that's the way it was and that's the way it is.
But many Americans don't get it.
That's why we published those pictures.
If they jarred you off the sofa, if they offended you, if they scared your children and sent you into a rage at mass murderers or heartless editors, then I say, it's a start.
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