Friday, August 26, 2005

Beslan

Slaughter of the Innocents

As we approach the first anniversary of the siege of Beslan, amid all the rhetorical excess of those who would compromise or surrender the values which animate our civilization to the dark forces of FascIslam, and who equate us with their evil acts and essence – as if there were utterly no difference between our actions and motivations and those of these malevolent enemies of humankind – it is of vital importance that we remind ourselves just who it is that we confront in this epic struggle for the soul of all humanity.
On the first of September last year, more than thirty FascIslamic terrorists attacked an elementary school on the very first day of classes, taking more than a thousand two hundred children, teachers and parents hostage. Within three days more than 300 were slaughtered – bombed, burned or shot to death – including more than eight score innocent children. More than 700 others were maimed or wounded, the last comatose victim dying but a few short weeks ago. The FascIslamists proudly proclaimed responsibility for their actions. The little ones were, after all, the children of infidels.
Certainly, the grotesque incompetence of the Russian authorities contributed to the enormity of this human tragedy. But it isn’t Vladimir Putin and his neo-tsarism that is responsible for the pain and suffering and death, however negligent, ill-conceived and hazardous the Russian response: it is the terrorists themselves who perpetrated this act of evil.
Ten days after the anniversary of this mass murder of innocent children, an act of which our enemies boast with pride, we here in America will mark the fourth anniversary of another mass murder on our own soil, the maleficent and intentional slaughter of ten times the number who died at Beslan. As we do, we must remind ourselves that our greatest enemy in this global conflict is not our adversary, but ourselves – our own complacency, inertia, division and doubt. All too many Americans, thoughtless, ignorant and unreflecting, blame their own country for the evils wrought by our depraved jihadist enemies. Such myopia is not limited to the political left or right, but appears across the spectrum, from the Jerry Falwells and Pat Robertsons who blame our tolerance and social liberality and the Pat Buchanans who blame, implicitly, the Jews, to the far greater number of leftist apologists from Cindy Sheehan and Michael Moore to Noam Chomsky, who despise the very society which assures their liberty to speak.
Two and a quarter centuries ago, the greatest orator of what was truly America’s greatest generation – the first American generation – Patrick Henry proclaimed “Give me liberty or give me death.” These were not mere words. They posed instead the stark reality of the situation for that American minority whose courageous acts and enormous sacrifice gave to us this great land, which even today remains the world’s beacon of freedom. Those same words resonate today, for the present generation, not as rhetoric but as reality. Our choice, however much we wish to deny it, is a simple one – liberty or death.
For the sake of humankind, America must choose liberty, not death.

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