Former British Special Air Service operator and now best-selling author, Andy McNab, writes in one of his great novels, I can’t remember which one, that in a fight, you never let your opponent move forward first. When you sense an impending fight, attack, or go on a defensive campaign from which you may never recover (dodging a punch never ended a boxing match–landing a punch has done so many times).
America had global salafists, such as al-Qaeda, on the ropes, but failed to finish them. And when the next round of the fight began, we weaved and bobbed to just survive until the bell rang, hoping the judges would give us the split decision.
But there is no bell and there are no judges.
In almost every country in which Islamic fundamentalists operate extensively, they have taken an offensive stance. In Yemen, Afghanistan Pakistan, Somalia, Lebanon, Sudan, Nigeria, Libya, and Egypt, it is not government power that brings fear, it is Islamist militias. The situation is far worse than it was prior to 9-11-2001 and worse than it was before 2008. The terrorists got the message: Americans want peace and aren’t willing to fight as hard as we are. America’s line in the sand was obliterated by mushy generalities and emphasis on American short comings. But fighting the global jihad with self-flagellating words is like fighting a termite infestation with peace offerings of cracker crumbs: The gesture makes the problem worse.
We can expect things to get worse. When America withdraws from its foolish foray into nation building in Afghanistan, it is unlikely that Afghan military forces will be able to hold back the tide of terrorists, criminals, and warlords that await. The Mother of all Mission Creep (MOAB-C) went from punitive raid to national level welfare. The saddest thought is that we had the war won already and let politicians use Afghanistan for campaign slogans.
Whomever holds the seat of President of the United States after the coming election with be faced with some very tough choices. The withdrawal from Afghanistan and resultant violence will inevitably draw criticism from political opposition. It may also boost morale for jihadists throughout the world. And yet, there seems no other option.
And yet this may not be the worst of it. The world is running out of time to deal with Iranian nuclear ambitions, and Uber-Militia, Hezbollah–better armed than 90% of the world’s nations–appears to be readying itself for war.