Newt Gingrich has an excellent piece of analysis in the Washington Times on the challenges that global jihad confront us with and the type of leadership we need to guide us through the rest of this century.
Newt's right, unfortunately, that our current leadership has failed to really lead and do what needs to be done to defeat jihadism. President Bush's instincts have been good, but he has failed to explain to the American people exactly what is at stake and what is demanded of us. Good leadership requires good policies and the ability to articulate those policies to the people. Bush has certainly not done an adequate job of the latter, as his approval ratings show.
Gingrich lays out what must be done, specifically in Gaza, if we can have any hope of ultimately prevailing against those who are committed to our destruction:
The West will sooner or later have to confront several hard realities if it is to defeat its enemies.
First, terrorist organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah will have to be rooted out and destroyed. We do not today have the strategy, the doctrine or the techniques for defeating these kinds of organizations. In Iraq, after more than four years of effort, our current doctrine for population control and for effective local policing and intelligence is pathetic. To defeat ferocious committed and enthusiastically violent organizations like al Qaeda and the Taliban will take new energy, new drive and new determination on our part.
Second, the indirect strategies of propping up corrupt dictatorships have to give way to direct people-to-people help, securing private-property rights and direct financial assistance so we can improve their families' lives and they can be empowered to defend their neighborhoods from evil men. Hernando de Soto will be vastly more effective in designing this than all the bureaucrats at AID and the United Nations combined.
Third, the U.N. camp system of socialism with unearned anti-humanitarian charity has to be replaced with a totally new system of earned income and earned property rights to restore dignity and hope to every Palestinian.
Fourth, the current system of schools under both Fatah and Hamas control have to be replaced in their entirety with a system dedicated to genuine education and to teaching human rights rather than jihad and hatred.
Lastly, mosques can no longer be allowed to preach hatred and violence. The de-Nazification that seemed obvious in Germany in 1945 will have to be matched by a dehatred campaign today. The haters have to be defeated, disarmed and detained if the forces of peace and freedom are to win.
These steps are only the beginning, but the gap between our current pathetic reaction to the Hamas victory and the requirements of victory give some indication of how far the West has to go before it starts winning. In Churchill's phrase, we are not even at the end of the beginning. However, we may be at the beginning of recognizing that this will be a real war.
Churchill was not only a man of powerful intellect who possessed a clear-eyed view of human nature and realities, but he was also a soldier and fighter who believed in sacrifice and honor and refused to accept retreat or surrender. So where do we go to find another like him?
Certainly not the Democratic party which acts as if it is the fault of the U.S. and Israel that the jihadis hate us and that if we'd just retreat to our borders, and the Israelis would march themselves into the sea, peace would break out in the world. The Democrats offer us Hillary Clinton, Barak Obama, and John Edwards. No Churchills there.
Perhaps the Republicans have someone who can lead us through the perils which lie ahead, but if so, the opposition media will try their best to ensure that his candidacy is stillborn. What's clear is that we need someone with Bush's instincts, Clinton's intellect and articulateness, and Reagan's ability to inspire.
Pretty tall order.RLC