Posted by Curt on 5 December, 2015 at 2:30 pm. 6 comments already!


Andrew C. McCarthy:

To protect American national security we must first understand what threatens American national security. We must grasp who our enemies are, what animates them, and how they work together — despite their internecine rivalries — to destroy us from without and within. We must stop trying to define “true Islam” and start restoring our own principles as our guide: liberty, equality of opportunity, the rule of law, and peace through strength.

The vast majority of Americans still believe in these principles. It is Washington that has lost faith. It is Washington that looks at liberty’s enemies and sees friends; that looks at anti-Western Islamic supremacists and sees “moderates” it can play ball with; that looks at lawbreakers and tut-tuts that “the system is broken.”

Reinvigorating American principles will require taming Washington. It calls for restoring the Constitution as a vital limit on government, not a relic . . . or an obstacle.

Ted Cruz gets this. Many Republicans talk the talk — we hear it in every election season, right up until it is time to stop campaigning and start governing. Senator Cruz walks the walk. That is why I believe he should be the next president of the United States.

Cruz understands that the most immediate enemy the United States confronts on the world stage is Islamic supremacism, which ignites jihadist violence through its state sponsors, terror networks, and activist organizations. The senator has not just fought against President Obama’s disastrous Iran deal, which enriches the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism while making it a threshold nuclear power. Cruz has concurrently pushed for the designation, at long last, of the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization.

The Shiite and Sunni branches of radical Islam have their differences with each other, but they are united in opposition to America, Israel, and the West. They are tied together by a common ideology: Islamic supremacism and its totalitarian legal code, sharia. The Shiite supremacist regime in Iran, its Hezbollah militias, and its Syrian client, Bashar al-Assad, clash violently at times with the Brotherhood and the jihadists that its Sunni supremacist ideology breeds — the Islamic State, al-Qaeda, and Hamas. Indeed, even within these factions there is bloodletting.

The rivalries are put aside, however, where America is concerned. That is why, for example, Iran has had a strategic alliance with al-Qaeda since the early 1990s. It is why Iran backs Hamas, the Brotherhood’s Palestinian jihadist branch. It is why Iran and Syria worked with Sunni terror cells to funnel jihadists to Iraq, where they attacked American soldiers. It is why the Brotherhood, for all its moderate pretensions, has preached and practiced jihadism and sharia encroachment against the West since its inception. It is why, when Washington plays with fire by aligning with “moderate Islamists,” it inevitably ends up arming violent jihadists.

Infighting inevitably breaks out between rival Islamic supremacist factions, as it has in Syria. When it does, it will often be the case that “the enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend.” That is how Senator Cruz recently put it in explaining that there is no American interest in the triumph of one set of our enemies over another.

It is disappointing to find Max Boot belittling this perfectly accurate observation as “simplistic.” But it is campaign season. Mr. Boot is an adviser to Senator Marco Rubio and, like much campaign rhetoric, his stumping is as incoherent as it is misleading: Just a few lines before implicitly conceding that Cruz regards Assad as America’s enemy, Boot bizarrely claims, based on nothing, that Cruz “imagines that Assad is a possible ally against ISIS.”

Speaking of imaginations run wild, noticeably absent from Boot’s critique of Cruz is the word “Libya.” That, you may recall, is where Senator Rubio and other Beltway Republicans decided it would be a fabulous idea to collude with President Obama and then-secretary of state Hillary Clinton to help Islamic supremacists oust the regime of Moammar Qaddafi. Up until the moment Washington switched sides, Qaddafi had been supported by the Bush administration, the Obama administration, and the bipartisan Beltway clerisy as a critical American counterterrorism ally.

A lot of us “simplistic” analysts who’d spent a bit of time studying radical Islam, and who are quite supportive of the use of U.S. power to quell jihadists (as opposed to, say, pursuing the illusion of sharia-democracy), objected that Washington’s “moderate Libyan rebels” were heavily infused with enemies of the United States — Muslim Brotherhood operatives and al-Qaeda-affiliated terrorists prominent among them. We warned that if Qaddafi were overthrown, Libya would disintegrate into a jihadist haven.

Today, Libya is a failed state: a jihadist sanctuary where Americans have been murdered, where Western nations and institutions have fled after repeated attacks, and where, in Sirte, the Islamic State now controls a “colony” just 400 miles from Italy.

When Ted Cruz says “the enemy of my enemy is not necessarily my friend,” he is saying we should resist in Syria a repetition of the Libya debacle, which begins with resisting the temptation — in Washington, the obsession — to presume that the Middle East teems with secular democrats. If that is simplistic, we could use a lot more simplicity.

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