Sunday, February 27, 2011

From Hiroshima to Iran

By Alan Caruba

These days it is fashionable to decry the use of not one, but the two atomic bombs that were used to convince the emperor of Japan and his warlords that the United States would destroy its cities if forced to invade. Within days World War Two was over.

America, since December 7, 1941, when it was the victim of a Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor, had been fighting in the Pacific theatre as well as in the European one. There was no doubt that, just as Germany had been reduced to rubble to achieve victory, so too would Japan if needed. Expectations of American casualties if an invasion was required were huge.

Long before September 11, 2001, war had been declared on America by Osama bin Laden, the mastermind of al Qaeda. The destruction of the Twin Towers shocked Americans. A decade later, however, they were debating whether Muslims have “a right” to build a mosque within a short walk of Ground Zero. That’s blindingly stupid.

Short memories can lead to big defeats. It is worth reminding Americans that our troops did not lose in Iraq. We went there to depose a psychopathic despot who killed his own people with impunity. We went there to see whether democracy could take root in a region where it never had. (Only a secular Turkey was the exception; its military kept the Islamists at bay, but that too is changing.)

In the midst of the turmoil that has taken much of the Middle East and northern Africa, along with the rest of the world, by surprise, it is worth noting that the only thing keeping Israel from being attacked and utterly destroyed and that is its nuclear arsenal.

A people who lost six million of their families, their brethren, whose motto became “Never again”, will not to fail to use them to defeat what has been grandly called “an existential threat.” There’s nothing existential about it.

The U.S. has developed a sophisticated arsenal of weapons in the years since 1945 and has become the world’s policeman, fighting a Cold War with occasional hot outbreaks in Korea, Vietnam, and elsewhere. We have tolerated a Communist Cuba just off the border of Florida. We have watched Venezuela go Communist.

We have not used our nuclear arsenal and we presently have a President who wants desperately to reduce it in order to appease the Russians who are not our friends.

I have no doubt that Israel will use its nuclear weapons and I can think of no reason why they should not.

It is the barbaric leadership of Iran that is the enemy, not its people. Israel understands that. Thus, attacks would likely target Iran's nuclear and military facilities, not its cities.

Throughout its sixty-two years, Israel been repeatedly attacked by Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria. Despite a cold peace with Egypt and Jordan, both nations find themselves challenged by a largely Islamist movement. Israel watches and waits.

As the first Iranian warships recently passed through the Suez Canal the Iranian puppets, Hamas, celebrated by firing two long-range Iranian-made Grad missiles rockets at Beersheba and Netivot from Gaza . It is a signal of what is to come

Israel, a democracy whose population includes over a million Arabs, has thrived. All around Israel the threat to its existence has continued. In this decade, it has required Israeli military operations against Lebanon’s  Hezbollah and, in Gaza, against Hamas. Absolutely nothing Israel has done to secure peace has been successful and yet it is constantly importuned to do more.

Only the fact that it has nuclear weapons and a trained, dedicated defense force has kept its enemies at bay. However, as the Iranians creep toward nuclear parity, it will demand a Hiroshima to thwart another Holocaust.

The Second World War was one of unimaginable carnage, but the allies were able to rebuild and even our former enemy, Germany, was converted to an integral power in Europe. The American occupation of Japan left it a truly democratic nation and an ally. A South Korea under the protection of America is an economic dynamo. We have embassies in Vietnam.

There are the lessons of history that entire new generations of Americans need to learn and need to understand.

The war to protect, restore, and project Western values was worth fighting. A war against an Iran that has declared itself an enemy is one that Israel will have to fight. Just as in 1945, nuclear weapons will restore clarity and peace.

© Alan Caruba, 2011


joetote said...

Your statement: There are the lessons of history that entire new generations of Americans need to learn and need to understand.

Never has any thing rang truer than those words! I have said many times in the past that not only do we Americans have short memories, but somehow we (and man as a whole) for whatever reasons refuse to learn from history. As such the same mistakes are made over and over.

i agree with all you say. Great piece!!

TexasFred said...

Regarding 9-11 and bin-Laden: Far too many Americans have very short memories, are ADD or ADHD, something like that, and apparently far too many have forgotten how to fight, and WIN a war...

If they can't watch DWTS or American Idol, it's not a part of the life they lead, and that my friend, is ALL a part of the dumbing down of America, if Steven Tyler doesn't say it, there's nothing there for America to hear...

Alan Caruba said...

I am sure you will both be amused that I have already received an email from someone in his 30s who referred to me as an old fart, senile, and crazy..."Dude."

I replied that he likely could not find his ass with both hands in a dark room.

I don't like being referred to as "Dude" and I will not be insulted without replying.

Anonymous said...

I agree, Alan.

I am heartened to see many programmes on satellite TV disecting and discussing the events of WW2. Lost films and analytical reference to battles, generals and all aspects of that fearful time should be continuously re-played to keep the horors fresh in The People's memory.

If we don't force feed this war and its causes down the 'So You Think You Can Dance' generation (well said, TexasFred) then there is a massive memory hole, and well -placed people just waiting to swallow-up and hide forever the facts and events.

Up here in North Luzon there are still people alive, my mother-in-law included, who remember all too well the Japanese invasion and the inhuman cruelties inflicted and how they had to flee for their lives. One does not see many Japanese tourists up here.

Some may say forgive and forget. Forgiveness is for the individual to consider, not collective forcing. Forget? Never, or you will suffer it again. History wins every time as is evident in the ruins of the past.

Clive in the Philippines

TexasFred said...

Well Alan, that's why we're cranky old BASTARDS and not cranky old *dudes*...


LarryOldtimer said...

There are great and daunting problems upon us. Our politicians, save a few, have no courage, and have no confidence in Americans.

Since I am 75 years old, and was a very cognizant child through those terrible earlier times, and witnessed the amazing courage displayed by ordinary American citizens, I know that when the chips are down, Americans will rise up to meet the challenge, and our most foolish pollutions can either like it or lump it.

I, for one, am able to rise to the challenge, and inspire the younger set to do so as well.

It will be most difficult, but I am not alone in this matter.

"Shady" said...

Alan, at least I have not been the only one to be called an "old fart" usual you are right on target. Great work.

Travis sez said...

Alan, this is necessary reading for people who begin with "Dude". With the situations we face, we need to keep our guard up, avoid distractions such as gowns, Oscars, Wisconsin cry-babies and watch Israel's back like no one else will. Our Student-Body Prez is in constant campaign mode giving high fives to Rahm E. Excellent job.

joetote said...

In this day and age, looking at reality from a mature standpoint is considered cranky I guess! LOL!

Will Harmon said...

We had better never turn our back on Israel. Nuclear war is coming to the middle east as foretold in scripture. In the end Israel will be standing and all the nations, Islamist or otherwise, that bring war on her will be reduced to ashes by God Almighty. Because of my belief and trust in the scripture I believe this will come to pass.

ajdshootist said...

Israel bought 3 or 4 Subs from Germany a few years ago all fire cruise missiles i wonder where they are at the moment,if they hit the Asswan Dam that take out Eygpt,if they have a sub say in the Black sea well its very near to Tehran and Damascus would be in range,we all know that Israel has nuclar weapons and i for one would not blame them for using them.

Alan Caruba said...

ajdshootist: That's a very timely reminder! Yes, one does have to wonder where those subs are.

joetote said...

I honestly had forgotten about the subs. Great comment ajdshootist!