I walked down Dunbar Street in Vancouver which had a clear view of YVR. Planes were lined up on the runway in a way I’d never seen. I had been watching the news and took my then 11 year old son up to the bank to pull some money on the principle that cash was always good in a crisis.
In the fourteen years that have passed I have had one more son. I have watched the evolution of the narrative from the Islam is not responsible to the “let’s not be Islamophobic” to the bizarre spectacle of the left trying to make a migrant wave into a test of compassion. I have watched the ham-fisted attempts of the Americans and their allies to fight sensitive wars against barbarians.I have watched victories in Iraq and Afghanistan turn to dust under the inept leadership of Obama and his coven of soft power ninnies. I have watched the West welcome Muslim immigrants with the barest of security checks. I have watched Islamic terror in France, Denmark, Sweden, Spain, England, the United States and, sadly, in Canada.
Several hundred years ago the black tide of Islam rolled across the Middle East, North Africa and on into Europe. Slaughter, rape and vast population displacements brought Islam to an unsuspecting world. And then, odd assortments of Europeans began to fight back. Crusades were launched to take back the Holy Places of Christianity from the Islamic invaders. The Crusaders were a brutal, bigoted lot, just as happy to kill Jews and Orthodox Christians as Muslims. But they understood the essentials: the invading Muslims posed an existential threat to Christian Europe and they had to be stopped.
We are all a little older and a little hardened to the sheer brutality of the Islamists. Some of us, mainly on the left, would like to believe that the terror of 9-11 and all the rest has nothing to do with Islam. They would like to believe that al Qaeda, ISIS, Hamas, Hezbollah, Boko Haram and the Muslim Brotherhood have nothing to do with Islam. They would like to believe that if we just left the Middle East alone to get on with its sectarian struggles and the eradication of Israel all would be well with the religion of Peace. When the alarm rang on 9-11 a large part of the left looked, saw largely brown people, concluded “racism” and went back to sleep.
The right’s reaction was, I’m afraid, conditioned by the left. Who wanted to be called a racist for pointing out that Islam was entirely incompatible with liberal democracy? Why court the harassment which attended to pointing out the female genital mutilation and keeping your women in bags was anti-feminist? Suggesting that Islam, at root, was medieval and, by doctrine, incapable of reform got you called Islamophobic and worse. So, unfortunately, the mainstream conservative parties – Republicans, Conservatives in Canada and the UK – bent over backward to disassociate terror from Islam. Even ISIS, that most fundamentally Islamist of organizations was touted by the right as an aberration, not Islam at all.
In the end we either learn the hard lesson of 9/11 – that Islam is antithetical to Western liberal democracy and the values it requires – or we don’t. So far we haven’t. So far we have pretended that radical political Islam is somehow an aberrant offshoot of a housebroken, enlightened Islam. We have ignored the fact that there is no moderate Islam. We ignore men like Turkey’s Erdogan who said,
“The term “moderate Islam” is ugly and offensive — Islam is Islam.“
Fourteen years ago, walking down Dunbar, I was expecting the other shoe to drop, another target for mass murder to be taken out. That day the Twin Towers fell, the Pentagon was attacked and half a dozen heroes died as the first casualties of the new war on Islam as they took back control of their plane before it could reach its target.
Read a bit of history and you begin to realize that Islam is, was and always will be the religion of the sword. Our leaders, left and right can pretend otherwise but, ultimately, containing and then pushing back the black tide of Islam is the only way the things we hold dear will survive.
The Crusaders were right.