People and organizations within and beyond Washington, D.C., public policy circles, including U.S. President Donald Trump, have expressed grave concern at the possibility that the United States is engaged in “endless wars.”
Practically since the birth of the United States of America, various ideologies have waged war against us. For the Islamists (Muslim supremacists), this was but continuation of their (at that time) uninterrupted 1,200-year war against a) non-Muslims everywhere; and b) Muslims whose version of the faith they didn’t agree with.
It wasn’t until President Thomas Jefferson decided to stand up to the endless, unprovoked, savage assaults against U.S. trade vessels by the Barbary pirates that violent jihadist acts against us stopped—for a while.
Since the 9/11 attacks, numerous influential Islamists have articulated a new strategy in their war against us: to draw us into military conflicts on their home turf that will bog us down in perpetuity, cost us a fortune in blood and treasure, and from which we will find it difficult to extricate ourselves—ever. Here are a few examples:
Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden said so explicitly, as reported by CNN on Nov. 2, 2004.
In a video first released by Al Jazeera, bin Laden said Al-Qaeda was “continuing this policy in bleeding America to the point of bankruptcy. Allah willing, and nothing is too great for Allah.” He added that the mujahideen had done the same thing to the Soviet Union in Afghanistan in the 1980s, “using guerrilla warfare and the war of attrition.”
He also said Al-Qaeda had found it “easy” to “provoke and bait” the Bush administration.
On Sept. 14, 2007, Anis al-Naqqash, a convicted Islamist terrorist in Lebanon, said the following, according to MEMRI:
“The American empire must die. The strategy that serves our interests is to get the U.S. embroiled in endless wars, which it cannot win.”
Trump has said on numerous occasions that he has no interest in the United States fighting endless wars, knowing full well that democracies are not capable of maintaining the public will to fight forever.
Thus, the obvious question is: Can we just stop fighting these wars, because we don’t like them and are not good at fighting them, and don’t want to incur the cost, in blood and money?
Unfortunately, the answer is no.
Whether we like it or not, the United States and all democracies (50 percent of the world’s population) are fighting an endless war against dictatorships (the other 50% of the world’s population).
We are under endless attack by two distinct enemies:
The “Greens”: Islamists, including those who perpetrate and fund terrorism, such as Iran, Islamic State, Al Qaeda and other violent groups, as well as those who are waging the “cultural jihad” to advance Islamism through non-violent means (most notably funded and supported by Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan).
The “Reds”: Communists and socialists (China and Russia, and also subversive domestic groups including ANTIFA and other far-left organizations).
So how do we defend ourselves from these two endless global and domestic threats, without bankrupting our government or sacrificing our brave soldiers?
As I have noted before, the best model to use is that of the Cold War, namely to treat war as a marathon rather than a sprint.
For more than 40 years, from 1946-89, we focused on containing the communist Soviet Union and all its satellite nations and regimes. Sometimes we fought physically, as in Korea and Vietnam, to help stop communist regimes from violently overthrowing and enslaving other nations. But primarily we fought through other means, such as cultural, economic, diplomatic and legal battles.
We also grew our economy exponentially, and became stronger, in multiple ways, every year—while the Soviets grew weaker.
Finally, after 43 years, the Soviet Union gave up, but the failed socialist ideology survived, both in Russia and in China, which—thanks to its economic reforms, which we helped enable—now poses a rising, existential military threat to the United States.
Further, we have allowed our schools and other major cultural institutions to be gradually infiltrated and influenced by proponents of socialist doctrines, to the point where, as documented in a detailed report by SaveTheWest editor and videographer Jon Sutz, “America At The Precipice”:
• “The Communist Manifesto” is the most-assigned economics textbook in U.S. colleges, assigned more than twice as frequently as any other economics book.
• 64 percent of Americans overall (across political parties) now agree with Karl Marx’s core socialist doctrine, “From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.”
• 58 percent of American millennials say they’d rather live under communism, socialism or fascism than under capitalism.
Similarly, nearly 1,400 years after the death of Muhammad, we are still fighting to protect ourselves from physical Islamist warfare (and cultural subversion).
If possible, these two fronts should be fought as cold wars, not hot ones. We should focus on containing both the Reds and Greens by confronting them culturally, economically, legally and diplomatically. We should also use our superior cyber abilities, and only employ our military assets when absolutely necessary.
We must maintain this marathon until the economic failures of the Reds and Greens forces their leaders to focus internally, on their own territories and citizens, and adopt more democratic systems.
We must be patient, as difficult as that is for democracies.
It certainly beats the World War II model of mutual death and destruction.
Ken Abramowitz is the president and founder of SaveTheWest.