America will either win the War on Terrorism, or resign to living in fear and an ever-diminishing influence in the world.
The Democrat's Weekly Radio Address last weekend illustrates why their Party is currently unfit to wield power or set policy affecting National Security. The Democrats called for concentrating spending in the War on Terrorism on "preparedness" at home. Leaving aside the argument that this is a cynical ploy to create more government employees union jobs, thus empowering one of the Democrat's most faithful constituencies, let's take the suggestion at face value, as the Party's sincerely held viewpoint on how to win this war.
Democrats have drawn the policy distinction between themselves and President Bush. Their answer to terrorism is to stop going to war around the globe and beef up "preparedness" to prevent and respond to terrorist attacks in the U.S. A "catch the raindrops" approach, if you will. Moreover, Democrats routinely inveigh against the Patriot Act (for which they voted overwhelmingly), so their policy prescription is really "catch the raindrops with one hand tied behind our back."
The Bush Doctrine, which Democrats have never truly embraced, and acquiesced to at first only to avert electoral catastrophe, calls for the U.S. to hunt down, destroy and disable terrorist networks and the governments who sponsor and harbor them, thus taking the war to them, to prevent the terrorists from bringing the war to us. A simple truth that the President understands (and Democrats are clueless about) is that either you are moving the ball on your opponent, or they are moving the ball on you.
In the 2004 elections Americans will either agree with President Bush that the best defense against terrorism is a good offense, or with the Democrat's strategy of lay-low-and-maybe-the-terrorists-won't-bother-us. That choice will determine whether America proceeds to win the War on Terrorism, or resigns to living in fear, and to an ever-dwindling influence in the world.
A generation ago, Americans faced a similar choice. On the one hand was Jimmy Carter's worldwide retreat from Communist aggression, economic "stagflation," and dial-down-the-thermostat malaise, and on the other hand Ronald Reagan's "rendezvous with destiny" for the "shining city on a hill," that promised to restore America's economic greatness, and defeat our mortal enemy, the Soviet Evil Empire.
The right choice by the voters in 1980 led to unprecedented economic expansion, and a rising tide of freedom, democracy and American influence that transformed America and the world into a safer and better place. The stakes in the 2004 Elections are at least as great.