Tuesday, July 22, 2003


On the day after 3,000 people were murdered in World Trade Center buildings, very little was publicly known about the nature of the attackers. In the days and weeks afterward, the fuzzy images resolved themselves into concrete instances. First, the terrorist state in Afghanistan was captured, and turned upside down.  Then, the international network of funding sources and recruitment that ran through the Balkans, South Asia, Southeast Asia and the Middle East were patiently attacked. Then, a series of interceptions revealed a shadowy network of states which supplied deniable weapons to the armies of the night. There were Scud-bearing ships on the high seas, nuclear development facilities in remote Korean locations, mysterious mobile weapons laboratories. Some were captured, others watched. At each stage, the knowledge of the enemy became clearer. Names and faces, actual locations and physical objects took the place of code words on a list.

What emerged was staggering. The sheer scope of the War on Terror easily placed it in the category of a world war. From Kenya to the Sudan, from Yemen to Kurdistan, in London mosques, Parisian suburbs and Spanish cities; from Buffalo to Marin County to Vancouver; in Chechnya and in Moscow; in Pakistan and Afghanistan; in Kashmir and Iraq; in Israel and Lebanon; in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait; in Iran and Kazakhstan; in Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines; in all the ocean spaces of the world, the Islamic enemy was encountered. Small wonder that the Europeans advised America to surrender. A strange duality possessed the Liberal press, making it at once terrified that the enemy was too strong to resist; yet unwilling to admit that he existed at all lest that imply he should be fought. That was to be avoided at all costs.

In retrospect it is possible to see that the Liberal mind was stunned into submission, yet too shamed to admit it's own cowardice. After all, in terms of sheer numbers, the size of the Islamic enemy dwarfed any threat the West had faced in the past. In numbers uncounted, with oil money galore, it objectively dwarfed Hitler, before whom France surrendered in forty days. And it was embedded in the very fabric of the Europe. Thus much of Western Europe was determined to make this the greatest war never fought. What point to resistance? Yes, the end of West had come, but Marxism, to which many of them subscribed, had long predicted the day when when they would be punished for the sin of existing. All that remained was for the Leftist faithful to stretch out their necks upon the block.

Enter America.

If Europe survives another thousand years, it will never forgive the United States for spoiling their prophesied punishment. Just when Zed had come to the Vortex to bring Death the Liberator, some damned American gunslinger without the sense to feel doomed and guilty shoots Zed down. The hatred which the Left now feels for America has gone off the scale. Was it not enough for stupid America to destroy the Soviet Worker's Paradise on earth? Where have you gone, Uncle Joe, the Party turns it lonely eyes to you? Did it have to grind their heel into Marxist eschatology as well? Will the Americans not be defeated? Will they bring down the Mullahs and Kim Jong Il too? Is there balm after all in Gilead? It is, for many European post-modernists, an existential tragedy of the first order.

A specter is haunting Europe. It is the specter of simplisme.