After the shock of 9/11 and three bitter and contentious presidential elections, we still find ourselves a nation divided, hopelessly divided between red states and blue states, conservatives vs. liberals, and patriots vs. multiculturalists. Fundamentally, the dispute centers on two vital questions: What was the national significance of 9/11, and what should be the nature of our response? At stake in these debates is nothing less than the future of our democratic society.
I contend that we have framed the debate in inappropriate terms. There can be no overarching liberal or conservative response to violent aggression. The only appropriate response must be one that is purposely tailored to the specific nature of the attack. In the hope of casting new light on this discussion, I propose an alternative paradigm: reframing the issues in masculine or feminine terms – that is, the masculinization or femininization of society.
History appears to support the view that during prolonged periods of peace (the absence of actual enemy attacks on native soil), societies tend to become more feminine.* This does not mean to suggest that societies in peacetime necessarily become soft or effeminate, rather, that they become more inward directed, more concerned with what might for the sake of argument be characterized as feminine issues—that is, social and domestic issues, principally concerned with personal rights and civil liberties, as opposed to more aggressive nationalistic pursuits such as military ventures or foreign affairs. As peace settles in those traditional masculine virtues—strength, courage, duty, loyalty, bravery, honor—which served the society so well in time of war, and may in fact have saved the very life of that society—are gradually shunted aside and devalued, eventually replaced by the gentler feminine virtues of patience, understanding, nurturing, tolerance, and love.
Over the years, I submit, the character of America has changed. Somehow we, the valiant, universally respected victors of World War II, have come to be perceived—at least by our enemies—as a weak, feminine, Godless nation, selfish, self-centered, worshipful of youth and pleasure, obsessed with all the classic vanities—wealth, health, weight, style, status, and safety. An unapologetically self-indulgent society, who eagerly spends $42 billion a year on cosmetic plastic surgery and anti-aging products.* A cowardly society, loathe to risk the slightest injury to its soft, well-pampered skin. Of course, this is a grossly distorted, overly-simplistic view which, at least as it applies to our courageous military is, thank God, just plain wrong. Indeed, it is arguable that this is merely the sour self-righteous Islamisist view of a successful Western capitalist democracy. However, there may be more than one element of truth in this unflattering portrait. We have indeed changed. And nowhere has this change been more perfectly exemplified than in our deeply conflicted reactions to the events of September 11, 2001.
Immediately following the attacks on New York City, the Peace Protestors were out in force, filing into Manhattan’s parks and squares with their obligatory candles and guitars.
Under this maudlin display of love and good will, it quickly became apparent that there were those among us whose sense of national pride had been so thoroughly compromised by insidious doubts and—mostly inaccurate—leftist propaganda that they actually began to wonder aloud if perhaps we didn’t deserve it.
How do we explain the startling contrast between these ambivalent reactions to the horrors of 9/11 and the almost immediate display of visceral anger in response to the Japanese attacks on Pearl Harbor in December of 1941; even though it could be argued that, though admittedly dishonorable and treacherous, the Japanese attacks were in fact a military attack against a military target, that actually resulted in less fatalities (2,403 compared to 2,986) than were incurred on 9/11—while virtually all of the 2,749 victims in New York City were innocent civilians. Where, one might ask, is our righteous anger? What has happened to that steely resolve which we so courageously sustained throughout those terrible war years? How did we lose our way? And how, after our final victory, did we fall from those bright heights of post-war optimism down into this dark abyss of doubt and disillusionment?
From Merchants of Shame: Hollywood and the Demasculinization of America by Roger W. Gardner
The Case of Lt. Col. West
OPERATION: IRAQI FREEDOM
Lt. Col. West fined $5,000
Avoids court martial for using shock tactics to save lives
By Art Moore
World Net Daily
An officer in Iraq who used shock interrogation tactics to thwart an impending attack on American soldiers was punished with forfeiture of two month's pay, according to his lawyer.
Previously faced with the possibility of a court martial, Lt. Col. Allen B. West accepted Article 15 non-judicial punishment from the commanding general of the 4th Infantry Division at a hearing today in Tikrit, Iraq, said Neal A. Puckett, a retired Marine officer.
Puckett said the loss of pay amounts to $5,000.
"I'm pleased that it's over with," West told WorldNetDaily by telephone from San Antonio, Texas. "But I thought that taking $5,000 away from a guy who is about to retire was a little bit unnecessary.
"I didn't think that needed to be part of a sentence in order to send whatever message the commanding general thought he needed to send," he continued.
"Simply a letter of reprimand should have done it," Puckett insisted.
West will return to Ft. Hood, Texas, as soon as transportation can be arranged and will be assigned to the Rear Detachment of the 4th Infantry Division as he awaits the processing of his retirement request.
The punishment does not affect his eligibility for retirement and pension, Puckett said.
West's commanding officer, Maj. Gen. Raymond Odierno, had authority to accept or reject the recommendation of administrative punishment from the officer who presided over West's preliminary hearing in Tikrit last month, Lt. Col. Jimmy Davis.
At his preliminary hearing, West acknowledged he allowed two soldiers to beat an Iraqi policeman who refused to reveal details of an ambush plot and fired his pistol near the man's head, threatening to kill him.
As WorldNetDaily reported, under threat of an attack, West took charge of the interrogation of an Iraqi policeman, Yahya Jhodri Hamoody, determined to flush out details as he warned subordinates "it could get ugly." Threatening to kill the Iraqi if he didn't talk, West fired a pistol near the policeman's head.
The scared policeman then immediately disclosed the information, leading to the arrest of two Iraqis last August and cessation of attacks on West's 4th Infantry Division battalion.
At the hearing last month, West was asked by his defense attorney if he would do it again.
"If it's about the lives of my men and their safety, I'd go through hell with a gasoline can," he said.
"But that's what's going on out there in the streets here, and that's how I feel about my boys," he told the hearing, held in one of Saddam Hussein's lavish palaces. "There is not a person in this room I would not sacrifice my life for."
But Army prosecutors believe his actions in the town of Saba al Boor, near Tikrit, violated the Uniform Code of Military Justice. He was charged with aggravated assault and faced a wide range of possible outcomes from no disciplinary action to a sentence of up to eight years in prison.
The prosecutors gave West a choice – face charges or resign within days of his 20 years of service, losing retirement benefits. West chose to face the charges and place his fate in the hands of Maj. Gen. Odierno.
Puckett said West can be contacted by e-mail and his wife has her own e-mail address.
Angela West has set up a legal fund for her husband with the following address: Allen West Defense Fund c/o Angela West, 6823 Coleman Drive, Ft. Hood, TX 76544.
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Lt.Col. West and the Feminization of American Culture
By KG at Crusader Rabbit
"The 'West Affair' has implications for the survival of American civilization. It is just that important. Great empires of the past have similarly dissolved, disintegrated, and disappeared as a result of the same malady that holds America in its grasp -- the feminization of their culture. Why few in America realize this truth in its stark reality and its dark implications for the future -- most concern themselves with the minute details of the media's entertaining but trivial political 'issue of the day' -- tells us more about America than it does about the primary actors in the 'West Affair.' "
The whole thing makes fascinating--if depressing--reading. How are we going to turn this trend around? Is it too late?