Islamic Terrorism has become to the early 21st century, what Communism was to the late 20th century, the ultimate existential threat that the civilized world was forced to grapple with. In this article I will take a look at a few of the existing approaches, and their pros and cons, for winning the War on Terror.
1. Steal Their Thunder - It isn't the approach that comes to most average people's minds when it comes to dealing with terrorism, but it is the one favored in practice by most Western governments. "Steal their thunder" is a conventional enough defense strategy, in particular as practiced against Communist and Socialist groups, defusing their popularity by adopting a portion of their agenda as part of policy reforms.
Pros: On paper this approach doesn't require any casualties, just being good neighbors and making more room for a new culture. It also has the benefit of a pedigree going back several centuries, its defenders would claim that it helped neuter Communism in Europe.
Cons: Before, stealing their thunder, it's wise to consider whether we actually want that thunder in the first place. Europe may have avoided becoming Communist, but it has gone so far to the left, that it is no longer a competitive business environment and its index of human freedoms only looks good by comparison to a third world country. Skewing Europe and America toward Islam, would mean further diminishing freedom, and tolerating the ugly and brutal practices inherent in Sharia. And that is assuming it would actually work.
Worker's movements were domestic, Islamic immigrants are not. Accommodating them would require a profound loss of identity and giving in to a conquering minority that would in time become a majority.
2. Cordon Sanitaire - If we can't change Muslims, we can address the threat by creating Fortress States that cordon away the West from Muslim immigrants, while possibly deporting many existing Muslim residents. This would create an effective quarantine keeping Muslims away.
Pros: Dealing with the problem of a large Muslim population is vital for Europe's survival, especially when the discrepancy between native and immigrant populations is taken into account. Restriction and deportation would prevent Europe and other first world nations from being overrun.
Cons: Quarantine doesn't solve the larger problem of a newly aggressive Islam. Isolation can temporarily keep immigration and domestic expansion at bay, but that presumes a universal willingness to maintain that watch, and assumes that no more liberal government will come that will undo all that. Both assumptions are unlikely.
Nor does quarantine alone address what would happen when terrorists armed with unconventional weapons from Muslim states carry out attacks in order to force an end to the quarantine.
A quarantine solution alone would likely prove to be another Maginot Line, comforting in the short term, but ultimately futile.
3. Corrupt Them -It worked well enough for Communism, and it's simple. It lets Western nations stay Western nations while plying the "Noble Savages" with liquor, consumer items, sex, popular culture and all the works. The assumption is that Islam can't survive a hard core diet of the debauchery that helped destroy Western culture and pride.
Pros: It lets us keep doing what we're doing already. Democracy, Whiskey, Sexy, was an Iraqi slogan not that long ago.
Cons: For all their handwringing about Western degeneracy, Muslims are are already debauched, and invented forms of debauchery we've yet to get on to. A great deal of the drug traffic either originated or currently flows through Muslim countries. Imams and Mullahs in the Muslim world maintain control over alcohol and prostitution to line their own pockets. Homosexuality is far more common in the Muslim world than it is in the West, despite their reluctance to throw parades dedicated to it. So is pedophilia. Islamic paradise consists of sex with virgin demons. Narcotics such as Quat and Hasish are widely consumed by the general population.
About the only thing we can offer them are consumer goods, which the Chinese can too, and democracy, which they habitually use to elect Islamic psychopaths. So let's table this one.
4. Civilize Them - We can call this one by its fancier name of nation building, but it amounts to the same thing. We come in, clean up their mess, teach them about Democracy, talk them out murdering their daughters, and replace their failed states with secular Republics.
Pros: Cleaning up Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan and Egypt would probably neuter Islamic extremism. But of course there's also Indonesia, Kuwait and Bahrain. And it's anyone's guess where Jordan will be in a few years. Never mind Gaza.
Cons: We tried it in Iraq and it's pretty demanding. Even an actual Empire would find the job challenging. Not impossible, but it would require avoiding our failures in Iraq, a massive mercenary corps, and being willing to live up to the worst liberal stereotypes of us... all for a noble aim. Doable, yes. Fun, not so much.
5. Kill Them - This one is pretty straightforward. We have the lead in both conventional and non-conventional weapons. Any nation hosting Islamic extremists would have a year to take care of the problem, or we would take care of them. No nation building, just massive destruction aimed at their technological and transportation infrastructure reverting them back to 19th, if not the 18th century.
Pros: It solves much of the problem, especially when combined with a quarantine.
Cons: We would have to be willing to kill millions, directly or indirectly, while maintaining an alliance that would defy Russia, China and the First World nations that would accuse us of genocide. The real name for this war might well turn out to be World War III. It would take a Churchill or a Roosevelt to launch something like that, and while the world would be radically different afterward, it might well turn out to be radioactively different too.
Of course that still beats having out grandchildren grow up as slaves of the Ummah.
6. Divide and Conquer- As much as Muslims love to kill infidels, they love to kill each other even more. No one hates each other like family, and probably the only reason that Muslims didn't actually conquer a lot more of the world, was their inability to stop fighting with each other.
Divide and Conquer has worked well enough in Iraq, but it's not just Shia vs Sunni. The Muslim world is full of religious and tribal differences that can be exploited. With the right minds addressing the problem, schisms can be created, feuds can be sparked and the next 9/11 would happen in Saudi Arabia or Pakistan instead of New York.
Pros: Cheap and fun for the whole family. Or as Patton put it, "No poor bastard ever won a war by dying for his country . He won it by making other bastards die for their country."
Cons: 9/11 and a lot of Muslim terrorism is actually an outgrowth of conflicts within the Muslim world. When Bin Laden feuded with the Saudi royal family, he flew planes into New York and Washington. When Hamas and Fatah fight, they both send suicide bombers off to blow up Israeli targets. Even internal Muslim fights will always wind up involving us sooner or later.
On top of that internal Muslim warfare is the likeliest state of affairs to produce a Caliphate, which would turn out to be the ironic opposite of our original agenda.
7. Scare the Hell out of Them: Remember when Muslims were afraid of Bush, instead of throwing shoes at him? After 9/11 there was a sense that America might do anything at all, and fear rippled across the Muslim world. Then we sacrificed thousands of soldiers to police Iraqi neighborhoods, rebuild generators and provide clean water. Naturally the shoes followed. Nobody is afraid of Mother Theresa, even if she happens to be packing heat.
Pros: Fear is a great deterrent. No one sits down next to the crazy person on a bench because you don't know what he might do.
Cons: To keep people afraid, you have to find ways to keep upping the fear level. Or pretend to be psychotic.
8. Get Tough - One way to get the enemy to stop advancing, is to stop retreating. Right now the only one of these solutions that First World nations are prepared to embrace is, Steal Their Thunder, and even Civilize Them is considered controversial. Getting tough against all levels of Islamic conquest, from foreign insurgencies to domestic imposition and immigration, means refusing to tolerate any more.
Giving in or resigning yourself to the inevitable is the surest way to lose any conflict, violent or non-violent. Most of these solutions imagine a government and a public willing to face the crisis. But that can only happen when they realize that there is a crisis, and that retreat in the face of it will not be tolerated.
All these solutions naturally have their pros and their cons, as all solutions do. But for the moment Getting Tough is the solution we can realistically work for, and what that means is refusing to give up, surrender and go away and wait for the inevitable. It means fighting the good fight, and refusing to tolerate the intolerable, on the grounds that pundits and politicians demand that we should.
All the other solutions demand government action. This one is tailored for individuals, in communities and workplaces. To borrow a liberal term, Think Globally and Act Locally. Know about the Global Jihad and do what you can to refuse to tolerate it locally. That is where the resistance and any prospective solution begins.