Winston Churchill began one of his most memorable speeches by saying: “The news from France is very bad.” The news these days is not great; not on a par with the fall of France, admittedly, but not great. Multiple suicide bombings in Iraq with no respite in sight and the terrorists seemingly gaining momentum; Democratic presidential candidates flanking one another to the left, oblivious to the war–a war to the death, I believe–that we are engaged in; wildfires raging in California, rumored by some to have been started by al Qaeda (I don’t believe this simply because they haven’t claimed credit, and news coverage is their first priority); Saddam Hussein and bin Laden apparently still on the loose and, perhaps, gaining strength.
This morning the Trunk and I were talking about the strain of keeping up with largely-bad news on a daily basis. We wondered whether we should declare a moratorium on news for a while and maybe become a music criticism site. Or the Trunk could cover music while Deacon keeps us up to date on soccer and I look for photos of girls in bikinis to post.
Nah. We aren’t going anywhere. Our contribution is of course small; but we have no doubt that through this site and our other efforts we do contribute. And the instinct to fight is strong. I find myself reading transcripts of Churchill’s speeches; our era, I think, has some parallels to his, as the war rumbles into high gear amid widespread wishes that it would simply go away and craven hopes that through appeasement we can bribe our enemies to leave us alone. Tonight I came across these words of Churchill’s from his first radio broadcast as prime minister:
“Today is Trinity Sunday. Centuries ago words were written to be a call and a spur to the faithful servants of Truth and Justice: ‘Arm yourselves, and be ye men of valour, and be in readiness for the conflict; for it is better for us to perish in battle than to look upon the outrage of our nation and our altar. As the Will of God is in Heaven, even so let it be.’”
It is not clear to me that the war against Islamofascism can be won. Our enemy is the most brutal and implacable, perhaps, that we have ever faced. But won the war must be. So let us screw our courage to the sticking point, and fight in the fields and on the beaches. But forgive me if I find a bikini-clad girl here and there to lighten the moment.
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“Arise and take our stand for freedom as in the olden time.” Winston Churchill
“Proclaim Liberty throughout All the land unto All the Inhabitants Thereof.” Inscription on the Liberty Bell