Former Speaker Newt Gingrich may be the most notable public figure in some time to state the obvious: radical Islam is a clear and present danger to America.
In a speech last week at The American Enterprise Institute in Washington, Gingrich said, "this is not a war on terrorism ... this is a struggle with radical Islamists." The problem, he said, is that too many leaders are "sleepwalking" and won't face the threat.
Ask yourself: if you wanted to infiltrate a country, wouldn't a grand strategy be to rapidly build mosques from Ground Zero in New York, to Temecula, Calif., and establish beachheads so fanatics could plan and advance their strategies under the cover of religious freedom and that great American virtue known as "tolerance," which is being used against us?
The best people to consult on such matters are those with the life experiences and knowledge to credibly comment on the subject. After all, we can't expect those who wish to destroy us to tell the truth, can we? Except that they do tell it by their words and deeds throughout much of the world. The problem isn't that they're not telling. The problem is that too many are imprisoned in denial.
One such expert is Yoram Ettinger a former Israeli diplomat and current commentator. In a posting on the website ynetnews.com in which he comments on Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons and the West's feckless response through meaningless sanctions and empty rhetoric, Ettinger writes: "Western policy-makers grow increasingly reconciled to co-existence with a nuclear Iran. They assume that, notwithstanding the radical rhetoric, the Iranian leadership is pragmatic, cognizant of its limitations, unwilling to expose its people to devastating Western retaliation and considering nuclear capabilities as a tool of deterrence -- and not as an offensive weapon -- against the U.S., NATO and Israel.
"However, a nuclear Iran would constitute a clear and present danger to global security and peace, which must not be tolerated. In order to avert such peril, it is incumbent to disengage from illusions and engage with realism."
Realism is a quality clearly lacking in much of the rhetoric from this and previous administrations.
Ettinger continues: "Unlike Western leaders, the Iranian revolutionary leadership is driven by ideological and religious conviction, bolstered by ancient imperialist ethos:
"1. Jihad is the permanent state of relations between Moslems and non-Moslems, while peace and ceasefire accords are tenuous.
2. The Shihada commits every Shiite to kill and be killed, in order to advance Shiite Moslem strategy
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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