Saturday, January 10, 2015

10-Jan-15: A time for choosing

The Paris kosher supermarket last night: Europe meets its terrorism-minded
fellow citizens... and is found wanting [Image Source: Screen shotfrom video clip]
J.E. Dyer, a retired Naval Intelligence officer based in Southern California, writes incisively (at The Optimistic Conservative, and at Liberty Unyielding) about many of the issues that keep us awake at night. Her contribution to the urgent need for understanding what is happening in Europe and beyond, published last night under the title "Paris attack: The West’s time for choosing" is a wonderfully intelligent analysis with some concrete recommendations. Some extracts:
French and other European
Jews by the thousands
have made the choice
  • What the Kouachis and their co-jihadists have done is bring some elements of the urban civil war in Syria (and Iraq) to the streets of Paris.  There are estimated to be more than 1,000 French citizens who have self-deployed to fight with the jihadis in Syria... But there can be far more actual terrorists if this cohort turns itself into a terrorist army inside France...
  • In a sense, this event is bigger than 9/11, even though the body count is much smaller, and the terrorists’ methods are less spectacular.  The less-spectacular methods are actually an advantage for the terrorists, because the entry price for them is so low.  It takes far less prep time and fewer resources to bring off a series of armed raids, in a target-rich environment like a major city, than to use jumbo jets as guided missiles to attack iconic American buildings.
  • What people need to understand is that this is too big for the police to handle.  That’s why the French police have not been “in charge,” in the way we are accustomed to, at any point in this drama.  They keep being surprised and rear-ended; even now, the jihadi gunwoman we know about, Hayat Boumedienne, is on the loose, having eluded capture in the standoff at the Jewish market.
  • A free people cannot live that way. And if we are not a free people, then there is no point in the borders and constitutions we have now.  The value of everything is up for grabs.  A reset of some kind is inevitable, because the path we are on is unsustainable.
  • The change has occurred.  The war has started.  The problem is already too big for the police, as we commission them to operate in liberal Western lands.  To talk in terms of what the police “should have been doing” or “should have known” is to misunderstand entirely what is going on...
  • If we want to harden Western cities against jihadi attack cells, we will first have to coalesce around the elements of a Western-style strategy to win a war and then end it...
  • Many people will be reluctant to make that mental leap, but until we do, things will continue to get worse. This war-style strategic framework does not mean that we have to kill Muslims in our midst or evict them from Western nations.  It also doesn’t mean that we have to keep enlarging government and giving it more arbitrary power.  I don’t want to do any of those things, and won’t make common cause with anyone who does. But there are Western things we should be doing to change the momentum against radical Islamism...
Commander Dyer's cogent article goes on to articulate what some of those Western things are, and trust us when we say the choices are not easy or easily implemented. But as she notes at the end, "The time for choosing has arrived". That is plainly true, and has consequences.

No comments: