On Saturday, our friend Lawrence Kadish had an op-ed in the New York Post recalling Winston Churchill’s courage and leadership in the context of our present conflict with Islamic terrorists. It is well worth reading:
During the summer of 1940, after losing thousands of men and virtually all of its ground armor and weapons following their evacuation from Dunkirk, many felt that — barring a miracle — there was no rational reason for Britain to stay in the fight. Joseph Kennedy, America’s ambassador to Great Britain and father of the future president, told Americans that “democracy was finished” in England, as he sought a meeting with Hitler “to bring about a better understanding between the United States and Germany.”
Britain’s new prime minister, Winston Churchill, saw things quite differently and used the soaring power of oratory to restore, rally and mobilize his citizens. There was never going to be “an understanding” between democracy and the Third Reich.
Seventy years later, America can learn lessons from Churchill’s galvanizing leadership and the strategy behind the Battle of Britain, as we confront today’s ongoing war against terrorism. There can never be “an understanding” with an ideology that despises democracy. There can never be “an understanding” with the type of suicide bombers who crashed passenger planes into New York, Washington and Pennsylvania. There must never be “an understanding” with those despots who, many perceive, have current-day ambitions resurrected from centuries past to achieve a new era of Islamic conquests.
But the White House also cannot hamstring our forces in the field, preventing them from deploying the full sweep of our military technology when needed to ensure the protection of our troops and the victory that will deny terrorists their safe havens.
Unfortunately, it is hard to see much resemblance between our current leadership and Churchill.