Another reminder of the increasing threat to Europe comes from the head of British intelligence. The director general of MI5, Eliza Manningham-Buller, said as many as 30 major terrorist plots are being planned in the country and that future threats could involve chemical and nuclear technology. She said young Muslims are being groomed to become suicide bombers and that MI5 agents are tracking 1,600 suspects, most of whom were born in Britain and are linked to al-Qaeda in Pakistan. Prime Minister Tony Blair, who once called for the expulsion of seditionist radicals and the closing of some mosques, has been rebuffed by the British courts, which continue to treat terrorism as a crime problem instead of a war. Radical Muslims have flooded Europe, but Europeans pretend they will not be harmed if they imagine the enemy poses no threat.
Both a novelist and a realist could write the following scenario: In an effort to take Iraq off the table as an issue in the 2008 presidential campaign, the Bush administration adopts most of the provisions of the Iraq Study Group. In a modern version of the Paris Peace Talks, which allowed the United States to have "peace with honor" and withdraw from Vietnam (resulting in the deaths, imprisonment and "re-education" of unknown numbers of Vietnamese who wanted to be free), the administration then orders a "redeployment" of forces after "negotiations" with Syria and Iran (recommended by Blair). This allows just enough time for American troops to leave before al-Qaeda murders the elected leadership and takes over Iraq.
Meanwhile in the United States, mosques and Islamic schools paid for by the extremist Wahhabi sect, multiply like fast-food franchises. Terrorists are imported and recruited from prisons. Al-Qaeda announces that weapons of mass destruction have been placed in key American and European cities. They demand that the United States withdraw its protection of Israel. If we refuse, they threaten to detonate their weapons, killing millions of people. What president, or prime minister, will reject that demand? After capitulating on the installment plan, who will have the political or moral capital (or military capacity) to stop Armageddon?
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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