Glenn Reynolds is quoting a passage from an upcoming book called Civilization and Its Enemies: The Next Stage of History. It’s a very important quote for this time:
Forgetfulness occurs when those who have been long inured to civilized order can no longer remember a time in which they had to wonder whether their crops would grow to maturity without being stolen or their children sold into slavery by a victorious foe. . . . They forget that in time of danger, in the face of the Enemy, they must trust and confide in each other, or perish.
They forget, in short, that there has ever been a category of human experience called the Enemy. And that, before 9/11, was what had happened to us. The very concept of the Enemy had been banished from our moral and political vocabulary. An enemy was just a friend we hadn’t done enough for — yet. Or perhaps there had been a misunderstanding, or an oversight on our part — something that we could correct.
And this means that that our first task is that we must try to grasp what the concept of the Enemy really means.
The Enemy is someone who is willing to die in order to kill you. And while it is true that the Enemy always hates us for a reason — it is his reason, and not ours.
The Enemy isn’t Islam. The Enemy is a perversion of Islam that would slaughter secular Muslims as well as the "Jews and Crusaders" the rail against. The Enemy wants all women to be covered from head to toe and utterly subjugated. The Enemy wants to execute homosexuals. The Enemy wants to end all dissent and institute a system of shari’a – a system of law that is believed to be the very will of God and unchallengeable by men.
The Enemy doesn’t care about Kyoto, or the ICC. The Enemy doesn’t care if a Democrat or a Republican is in the White House. The Enemy doesn’t care about the poor and the oppressed – the people they ruled were deliberately kept poor and oppressed. They only want one thing: the complete and utter subjugation of the world under their rule. They view the world under the lens of two houses: The House of Islam and the House of War. Those who do not submit must be destroyed.
Such an enemy cannot be negotiated with. Such an an enemy cannot be compromised with. Such an an enemy cannot be satiated by anything other than the complete and total victory of their ideology.
We’re at war, and it is a war that is shared by the entire civilized world. Some have chosen to fight, and others have chosen to ignore the threat. However, if we lose, we all lose, and if we win, all humanity wins.
It may no longer be popular to cast the world as a battle between good and evil, but it also the truth. Unless we can see that truth, we cannot understand what we must be done to defend the shared values of humanity.