Moment of truth

Every election year we are told that this is the most important election in our lifetime. Usually this can be laughed off as political hyperbole, but sometimes it is true. The election of 1860 certainly comes to mind as an election of monumental impact on this Nation.  The election of Woodrow Wilson saw the end of American isolationism, while the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980 brought the beginning of the end of the Cold War.  Now we are facing an election of unprecedented importance; the future of the United States as a world leader and the survival of Western Civilization hang in the balance. We cannot afford to be complacent, and we cannot afford to lose; the stakes are too high.

There are critical moments that are pivotal in history, and often these moments go unrecognized at the time.  The battle at Marathon is a classic example; in 490 BC. 10,000 Greek soldiers defeated a Persian army of 100,000 and drove the rulers of the ancient world permanently from Europe. The Persians did not think this important.  They saw Greece as a puny backwater, and not worth mounting another effort to conquer. The Greeks, however, never forgot.  Alexander would teach the Persians the importance of taking their enemies seriously.  The Persians, you see, had a failure of will.

There are numerous examples of this throughout history.  Rome didn't want to tangle with Attila, and paid the price.  The Spanish failed to take Britain seriously until the Brits destroyed their Invincible Armada, The Russians learned the hard way not to take Japan lightly in 1905, and France learned a nasty lesson ignoring Hitler. 

Do you see a pattern?  All of these nations failed to deal with their enemies and subsequently began to deteriorate and/or collapse.  Their collective problem was that they had strength but had lost the will to do what needed to be done.  They had become paper tigers.

Osama Bin—Laden has said America is a paper tiger.  He attacked us repeatedly: the first World Trade Center attack, the Khobar Towers attack, the Embassy bombings, the U.S.S. Cole.  Bill Clinton was too busy selling dual use technology to the Chinese and cavorting with interns to respond. 

Then Al Gore plunged the United States into the nightmare of 2000.  It became obvious to anyone who was paying attention that the U.S. was bitterly divided along partisan lines.  When George Bush finally assumed the Presidency the Democratic Party refused to acknowledge his legitimacy.  Is it any surprise that September 2001 another attack came?  Bin—Laden had observed in Mogadishu that we would cut and run when attacked.  He saw we lacked the will for a fight.  The time was ripe for a spectacular attack on America itself, an attack to show the world our weakness.  Hence came 9—11.

We were very fortunate, for we had a strong President.  We invaded Afghanistan, and invaded Iraq.  We showed iron resolve.  We ticked off the corrupt Euro—elite.

But now we come to the Moment of Truth!  If we remove Bush from office, we may well be sealing our fate.  This is one of those critical moments in history upon which our fate and, in fact, the fate of Western Civilization depends.  Harvard Professor Samuel Huntington has written of the ``Clash of Civilizations`` and makes the argument that we are in a death struggle with the Islamic World.  He`s right; the terrorists are in every Islamic nation and have but one goal.  Islam is VERY serious about reasserting itself.  They intend to finish the job started by Muhammad, and WE stand in their way.  They intend to destroy us.

Too many Americans just aren't able to understand this.  This may well be the most dangerous time in all of our history.  China has been engaged in a proxy war with the U.S. The Chinese military says war with the U.S. is inevitable, and they believe we are a paper tiger. Pakistan acquired the Bomb through North Korean and Chinese technical help.  North Korea has nuclear weapons, and would not hesitate to use them on us if they feel regime survival is threatened.  Couple all this with the madness of these suicide—terrorists and you have a recipe for destruction — our destruction.

This election is about far more than George Bush and John Kerry.  It is about more than Republicans and Democrats.  It is about the soul of our Nation.  It is about answering the call of destiny, or taking the easy path.  The Bible says that the way which leads to destruction is broad and easy.  Are we going to take the broad and easy path?  Is the grit and sacrifice needed too much for America?  This may well be the most important decision we will ever make.

Many Conservatives are angry with George Bush because of his spendthrift ways and unwillingness to use his veto.  I have heard and read many conservatives who plan on staying home on election night, or are voting third party to send the President a message.  This is very foolish.  Even if you live in a ``safe`` state what you are doing is weakening the position of the President by reducing his popular tally.  Tom Daschle and friends used the election outcomes in 2000 to declare George Bush illegitimate, and they tried to marginalize him.  This played into the hands of the enemy then, and it will play into their hands now.  If we are too busy squabbling among ourselves we cannot fight the real enemy.  The radicals understand this; Americans die every day in Iraq to pay for our silly internecine political machinations.  Had we presented a united front in Iraq that phase of the war would be winding down.  The enemy would have had to cede Iraq to us. They know that they can win if they can get us fighting each other.  I fear they are right, and they may just win.

Do we have the will to fight this to the end?   This election will decide that question.  If John Kerry and the Democrats win they will begin scaling back on our military pursuit of those who would kill us. Even if George Bush wins, but the election is as close as in 2000, we may find our President unable to act as is necessary.  We need everyone out for this election; the stakes are just too high.  We cannot be too afraid or too complacent to act.  This is our moment of truth.  If our courage fails we may well join the ranks of Darius and the Persians as footnotes in history.

Timothy Birdnow is a writer in St. Louis

Every election year we are told that this is the most important election in our lifetime. Usually this can be laughed off as political hyperbole, but sometimes it is true. The election of 1860 certainly comes to mind as an election of monumental impact on this Nation.  The election of Woodrow Wilson saw the end of American isolationism, while the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980 brought the beginning of the end of the Cold War.  Now we are facing an election of unprecedented importance; the future of the United States as a world leader and the survival of Western Civilization hang in the balance. We cannot afford to be complacent, and we cannot afford to lose; the stakes are too high.

There are critical moments that are pivotal in history, and often these moments go unrecognized at the time.  The battle at Marathon is a classic example; in 490 BC. 10,000 Greek soldiers defeated a Persian army of 100,000 and drove the rulers of the ancient world permanently from Europe. The Persians did not think this important.  They saw Greece as a puny backwater, and not worth mounting another effort to conquer. The Greeks, however, never forgot.  Alexander would teach the Persians the importance of taking their enemies seriously.  The Persians, you see, had a failure of will.

There are numerous examples of this throughout history.  Rome didn't want to tangle with Attila, and paid the price.  The Spanish failed to take Britain seriously until the Brits destroyed their Invincible Armada, The Russians learned the hard way not to take Japan lightly in 1905, and France learned a nasty lesson ignoring Hitler. 

Do you see a pattern?  All of these nations failed to deal with their enemies and subsequently began to deteriorate and/or collapse.  Their collective problem was that they had strength but had lost the will to do what needed to be done.  They had become paper tigers.

Osama Bin—Laden has said America is a paper tiger.  He attacked us repeatedly: the first World Trade Center attack, the Khobar Towers attack, the Embassy bombings, the U.S.S. Cole.  Bill Clinton was too busy selling dual use technology to the Chinese and cavorting with interns to respond. 

Then Al Gore plunged the United States into the nightmare of 2000.  It became obvious to anyone who was paying attention that the U.S. was bitterly divided along partisan lines.  When George Bush finally assumed the Presidency the Democratic Party refused to acknowledge his legitimacy.  Is it any surprise that September 2001 another attack came?  Bin—Laden had observed in Mogadishu that we would cut and run when attacked.  He saw we lacked the will for a fight.  The time was ripe for a spectacular attack on America itself, an attack to show the world our weakness.  Hence came 9—11.

We were very fortunate, for we had a strong President.  We invaded Afghanistan, and invaded Iraq.  We showed iron resolve.  We ticked off the corrupt Euro—elite.

But now we come to the Moment of Truth!  If we remove Bush from office, we may well be sealing our fate.  This is one of those critical moments in history upon which our fate and, in fact, the fate of Western Civilization depends.  Harvard Professor Samuel Huntington has written of the ``Clash of Civilizations`` and makes the argument that we are in a death struggle with the Islamic World.  He`s right; the terrorists are in every Islamic nation and have but one goal.  Islam is VERY serious about reasserting itself.  They intend to finish the job started by Muhammad, and WE stand in their way.  They intend to destroy us.

Too many Americans just aren't able to understand this.  This may well be the most dangerous time in all of our history.  China has been engaged in a proxy war with the U.S. The Chinese military says war with the U.S. is inevitable, and they believe we are a paper tiger. Pakistan acquired the Bomb through North Korean and Chinese technical help.  North Korea has nuclear weapons, and would not hesitate to use them on us if they feel regime survival is threatened.  Couple all this with the madness of these suicide—terrorists and you have a recipe for destruction — our destruction.

This election is about far more than George Bush and John Kerry.  It is about more than Republicans and Democrats.  It is about the soul of our Nation.  It is about answering the call of destiny, or taking the easy path.  The Bible says that the way which leads to destruction is broad and easy.  Are we going to take the broad and easy path?  Is the grit and sacrifice needed too much for America?  This may well be the most important decision we will ever make.

Many Conservatives are angry with George Bush because of his spendthrift ways and unwillingness to use his veto.  I have heard and read many conservatives who plan on staying home on election night, or are voting third party to send the President a message.  This is very foolish.  Even if you live in a ``safe`` state what you are doing is weakening the position of the President by reducing his popular tally.  Tom Daschle and friends used the election outcomes in 2000 to declare George Bush illegitimate, and they tried to marginalize him.  This played into the hands of the enemy then, and it will play into their hands now.  If we are too busy squabbling among ourselves we cannot fight the real enemy.  The radicals understand this; Americans die every day in Iraq to pay for our silly internecine political machinations.  Had we presented a united front in Iraq that phase of the war would be winding down.  The enemy would have had to cede Iraq to us. They know that they can win if they can get us fighting each other.  I fear they are right, and they may just win.

Do we have the will to fight this to the end?   This election will decide that question.  If John Kerry and the Democrats win they will begin scaling back on our military pursuit of those who would kill us. Even if George Bush wins, but the election is as close as in 2000, we may find our President unable to act as is necessary.  We need everyone out for this election; the stakes are just too high.  We cannot be too afraid or too complacent to act.  This is our moment of truth.  If our courage fails we may well join the ranks of Darius and the Persians as footnotes in history.

Timothy Birdnow is a writer in St. Louis