The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Friday, August 08, 2014

Moral Close-Ups

It's hard to believe that any of the dozens of barbaric Islamist groups that populate areas of the Middle East and North Africa could be worse than Hamas. After all, Hamas places palestinian civilians (particularly children) in close proximity to rocket launchers aimed as Israeli population centers (almost 4000 launches over the past month). Hamas hopes for a propaganda victory when Israel tries to take out the launchers, and collateral damage occurs. For Hamas, human shields are a tactic, and Hamas's apologists within the Muslim community and among the useful idiots on the left take little notice. Even worse, once the fighting ceases, Western nations will give hundreds of millions of dollars of "humanitarian aid" to Hamas, who will not use it for the good of its citizens, but instead to acquire more rockets, build more terror tunnels, and enrich their leadership. Will we never learn?

But as bad as Hamas is, ISIS in Iraq is even worse.  ISIS is the culmination of a trajectory of evil that began with the Muslim brotherhood (you know, the group that our current administration labeled a "moderate"), metastasized into al Qaeda and Hezballah, then again into Hamas, Boko Haram, and now ISIS. Those of us who warned of an "Islamofacist" danger years ago, along with those who criticized Islam for not being far more aggressive in condemning and combating groups within its midst, have been proven right.

ISIS was allowed to grow and strengthen for more than a year. Early on, the group could have been crippled with U.S military action, but the Obama administration was singularly focused on leaving Iraq and couldn't be bothered. Over the past three months, ISIS has become a combat force which until yesterday, went unopposed by any western nation.

Barack Obama has finally approved "limited" U.S. military action again these Islamist barbarians, but it just might be too little, too late. Instead, he should have forcefully encouraged our military to obliterate ISIS where they stand—destroying their people, their weapons and their advantage. We have the firepower, we just don't have the will.

Richard Fernandez comments:
The Obama administration has reached what one might call the ‘Pol Pot Aftermath’ of its Middle Eastern policy. Michael Totten notes that ISIS is massacring the Yezhidis, people who practice “the original religion of the Kurds.” What is worse, according to the New Yorker magazine, this massacre is genocide ...

Of course the Yazidis are not alone in facing extermination. For the first time in nearly 2,000 years there are no Christians in Mosul. What no power of evil has been able to be accomplish in two millenia was achieved in a trice by the most moral administration in American history; perhaps by accident, perhaps by carelessness, perhaps even by design, but achieved nonetheless. Whichever way you look at it, that’s awesome.

The entire map of the Middle East has been transformed into a 21st century version of the European Bloodlands. But the most remarkable thing is this catastrophe was enabled in a fit of moral superiority. Roger Kimball, speaking to an audience in Sydney observed that most striking property of modern political correctness was narcissism. For the ultimate source of leftist legitimacy is the view that they are better simply persons than the rest; able to make moral judgments no one else can. Their self-regard is almost erotic. They’re in love with themselves. Or to paraphrase one the president’s campaign lines: ‘we are the people the world has been waiting for.’

We’re ready for our moral close-ups.
The Wall Street Journal comments on the atrocities that are everyday occurrence under ISIS:
In the corridors of realpolitik, it is always possible that even events that shock the conscience in seemingly faraway places will be seen as insufficient to justify U.S. involvement, especially after the opinion-poll fatigue of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

What is happening in Iraq, however, won't remain faraway. The men driving their Islamic State have no intention of settling down in dusty towns to a contented, Shariah-led home life. The Islamic State is a dynamic, messianic, outward-moving force.
And therein lies the problem. Islamist groups are on the move. They will not "remain faraway." They will not stop with Iraq, nor will they stop with Israel, or with Africa or even with Europe. Their evil ideology is bent on world domination, and they are using mass slaughter of other peoples, beheadings, violent intimidation, the destruction of any vestige of any religion they encounter, and a broad array of other terror tactics to achieve their goal.

It's time for the West to make a stand and to call on those who claim to be Muslim moderates to be on the front lines of that stand. Sadly, our current leadership prefers to sit far behind the lines, hoping against hope that bad things won't happen. That's fantasy, but then again, that's the hallmark of an administration that's more interested in a "moral closeup" that it is in doing what is right.