Subject Areas


Islamist Terrorists

Are not civilized

Defending against terrorism: what should be done

The Christmas Day attack on our country refocused our minds on the fact that, just because we are Americans, we are targets of religious murderers. I recently returned from a trip to the countries that once were parts of the former Yugoslavia. As recently as 1994, some of these countries were fighting among themselves in what could be described as not-so-civil wars of independence. Not surprisingly, there remains considerable ill will among some of the parties. However, despite the region's troubled past, as tourists we were welcomed in each country (some of which are predominantly Muslim) and treated with courtesy and friendliness.

It was only when we began our flight home that we faced the threat of the irrational hatred of Islamic terrorists. I don't want to be deprived of the opportunity to visit foreign places, nor do I want to be blown apart in mid-air, so I propose our country take the following measures.

First: The president should face reality. He needs to stop pussyfooting around with talk about "alleged" bombers. This terrorist's underwear didn't catch on fire from spontaneous combustion. The president should be mad as hell with the nearly fatal ineptitude of our supposed government protectors. There is no reason why a government that spends months discussing trillion dollar programs can't find a way to solve computer database problems.
The president should also publicly express terrible anger at the demonic terrorists and their sponsors. Forget about being politically correct and tell it like it should be: "We are coming after you," and then actually do it. Our citizens should demand that at least as much of the president's attention be devoted to our protection as is given to politics, international junkets and vacations. We deserve to know that the president, flying on Air Force One, has in mind how vulnerable the rest of us are in our travels.

Second: What we don't know can hurt us and what we don't understand can be deadly. There is way too much about Islamic terrorism that our leaders apparently don't know or understand. When a group attacks us because we are Americans; that is war. Small attacks may be small-scale war, but they are war nonetheless. Bombs, whether dropped, carried or worn as underwear, are weapons of war. When armed foreigners deliberately blow up civilians anywhere, it is not a criminal activity, it is an act of war. Whether it happens here or abroad, it is still war. Foreign terrorists should always be treated as the deadly enemy fanatics that they are; not as domestic criminals. We must stop thinking that these things won't happen: they will. This Christmas Day terrorist, and the "shoe bomber" were inept; the 9/11 bombers were not.

Third: The "rules" of warfare dictate that only those who actively identify themselves as combatants are entitled to be treated humanely if they are captured. Those who hide in the civilian community and wage war have no such entitlement. Combatants in civilian dress have always been considered to be spies and saboteurs, and are customarily hanged or shot by the military. During our Revolutionary War, both British Maj. John Andre and American Nathan Hale were hanged as spies for being soldiers, but camouflaged as civilians. The same reasoning is valid today. Foreign terrorists captured while attacking civilians should be subjected to summary military trial then immediately hanged as the dogs they are. The only exception would be for those who provide sufficient information against their cohorts.

Fourth: If we believe some crimes, for example: "hate crimes," are more serious than others, then certainly mass civilian murder by religious fanatics should warrant appropriately severe consequences. Warfare against civilians has historically been considered a war crime. Supporting or participating in blowing up civilian buildings or airplanes is a war crime; and everyone complicit, foreign or domestic, should be treated as war criminals. Following World War II, those judged to have committed war crimes and those who ordered or permitted them were sentenced to death. We should prepare our legal system to deal effectively with terrorism by creating a war crimes law, and special, no-nonsense courts to punish those who abet terrorist war crimes.

There is no reason to suppose we can do anything to change the corrupted minds of the Islamist mass murderers. What we must do is to recognize that a state of war really exists and to ready our civilization to repel and defeat the enemy.


We can't "reason" with suicide bombers